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Thread: video head for manfrotto tripod

  1. #1
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    Default video head for manfrotto tripod

    Hi,

    I am looking for a relatively cheap video head for my existing manfrotto x190prob tripod which I already have form my photography days.

    There are some selling on ebay for 14.99 which look like proper fluid heads but I am wary of the cheap price. Has anyone bought one of these?

    Thanks

    Caline

  2. #2
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    You will not get a fluid head for 15. You might get a chinese copy of a Manfrotto but it won't be a fluid head and it won't be anywhere near as good as a genuine Manfrotto.

    I'm sorry to be the bearer of bad news but, at your level of videomaking and with your camcorder you should be looking at least at a Manfrotto 501 head at 120ish or, preferably, the 503 at about 220. I've got the 503 on a "gun and run" setup and it really is a lovely bit of kit for the price.

    Trust me on this one, a decent head/legs kit will improve your videomaking. If you buy cheap, within a few days' use it will start sticking and juddering. It's really boring to say this but, in videomaking, you get what you pay for.

  3. #3

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    Many years ago I thought the 'fluid head' sign meant 'the biz'.
    After using many brands in anger including manfrotto (good) through miller (better) to vinten vision (best so far) It's true that the best really does cost big bucks.
    Good tripod heads are worth their weight in gold and it's only when you push them beyond the 'locked off' that you appreciated it.

    Try a full zoom into something, then either a tilt or pan from a standing start to stop and you'll understand the difference. Get the best you can afford and it will pay dividends.
    My opinions are just that . . . Mine. It's not personal, but is based on my emotional and professional reaction to requested critique. If you choose to ignore constructive comments, I'll just assume you're a vanity poster and not posting to improve your filming and editing skills.

    Ex A.P.V Videomaker of the year - Ex M.M. IOV Come join my EXclusive club

  4. #4
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    Oh no!
    Thought that might be the case!
    So, either of that manfrotto heads would be good for filming weddings/events?
    Looks like I am going to have to dig deeper into my pocket that I thought for all this gear! Lets just hope I can get the results I am looking for, he he.
    Still need some longer life batteries. I don't want to buy the canon own as they cost a fortune and I have purchased non canon batteries for my 400D and not had any probs.
    Can anyone recommend non canon batteries for the XM2?
    Cheers

    Caline

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  6. #6
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    At the risk of sounding blunt... you get what you pay for.

    The heads you mention are okay-ish but you will quickly grow out of them. They're better than the 15 junk and better than something from Velbon or Hama but you really should buya 501 or 503 at least.

    Really, for weddings, you should be looking at Manfrotto, Miller, Vinten or Sachtler heads at about 500+, so the 501 is a bargain!
    Last edited by Rembrandt Rob; 11-19-2008 at 03:38 PM.

  7. #7
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    I believe you, I only wish I had more money!
    I'll probably go for the 501.
    Got a bargain 2nd hand bag off ebay, so saved some cash there.
    Think hubby will get me a mic for xmas (AT8797).
    Need to get kitted up for 1st 'proper' wedding in Jan. I have done a few weddings but not with my XM2. I am determined to do a great job!

    Cheers for the advice

    C

  8. #8
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    You're welcome.

    I assure you I'm not being a forum snob and insisting that anything less than "pro" gear is rubbish. It's just that you've picked two purchases which will last you a long time if you invest wisely. If you buy a cheap tripod head it will be money wasted as it will quickly become jerky and unreliable. In the same way, you'll quickly realise how sound is important and a cheap microphone will sound awful once you get aclimatised to listing to what you're recording.

  9. #9
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    One thing I've found is to consider your camera weight. I think it's fair to say that it's anticipated that 'pro' cameras will need heavier heads in more ways that just it's robustness and weight, I also find it means heavier fluid feel too. Even with the damping level completely released they are too 'heavy', and If I mount one of the larger ones on to my 190 pods then some actions will actually tilt the tripod believe it or not. Not likely at a wedding, but to be considered I think.

    The consequnce of this for me with my tiny cameras is that my 128's are really no worse that my 501 and another older heavier jobby I have, the number of which escapes me at the moment, with just a small camera mounted alone.

    So, to get the true benefit of the better heads I've had to add lots of weight, some 2.5 kg on a balance beam and an additional camera, then it makes sense, and only on a substantial tripod.

  10. #10
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    I am considering the above post and wondering if the 501 will be too heavy on my 190 xprob legs with my XM2 attached?

    I have noticed that video tripods have wider legs at the top (camera) end. Does this add to stability and am I being silly thinking I can use my photography tripod for video?

    Thanks

    C

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