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FORUMS General Gear Talk Tripods, Monopods & Other Camera Support
Thread started 13 Jan 2018 (Saturday) 23:02
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Sirui ballheads

 
SkedAddled
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Jan 13, 2018 23:02 |  #1

Okay, I haven't paid much attention to the industry and these forums for a while,
but upon my return to really explore the posts and comments, I find Sirui mentioned
frequently and with high praise. I've explored their website and read some reviews
and watched a few videos, so I'm probably gonna pull the trigger on one(or two) within
a couple of months. They're well-priced, much admired by many, seemingly of solid
and well-engineered construction...

Fortunately, Arca-compatible QR plates are super-inexpensive from many of the
ebay sellers, so that wouldn't be much of a spending outlay for just about anyone.

The reason for this post, then?
Well, I'm tired of the Manfrotto ballhead on my 055XPROB legs, as well as the Amvona
ballhead I upgraded to on the little 725B DIGI. Both legsets are of great quality
and very well-suited to my needs for either, but the heads leave me wanting
something of a higher quality. Sirui seems to have that, and without the exhorbitant
price-tags which normally are attached to such seemingly high-level gear.

Having said the above, I now turn to the selection.
I'm considering the K-10X or K-20X for the 725 legs and a K-20X or K-30X for the 055 legs.
The 055 currently has a Manfrotto 488RC2 on it, with the 725 having its little-brother
sibling of an Amvona clone; I think it was the 486, but don't recall.


So the real meat of this post is to ask you good folks just how well these heads perform
in real-world conditions. When I use a tripod, it's frequently in dusty, dirty environments
such as abandoned buildings, where I'm almost constantly on the move. But I use them
in settings such as museums and similar venues, where I enjoy having a solid mount
for different shutter speeds and such. My gear certainly doesn't weigh a lot: I shoot
with a 50D ungripped and my heaviest lenses must be only a couple of pounds each
(75-260 4.3 Soligor and Tamron SP 60-300mm 3.8-5.4), but I don't lug them around
when I'm stalking around in the more forebidding places. Much of the time, my Tamron
SP 28-80 3.5-4.2 is on the camera, and it's a light lens.

Thoughts, comments and rebuttals are welcome.


CraigΣ 10-20|Tamron SP 28-80|Tamron SP 60-300|Soligor 75-260|Soligor 400|Soligor C/D 500|Zuiko 50 f/1.8|More Manual-Focus glass
Of course I'm all right! Why? What have you heard?!?

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johnf3f
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Jan 14, 2018 15:22 |  #2

I do not own any Manfrotto ball head but I have tried most of them - which is why I do not own one. I was never happy with their locking abilities (except for the "Hydrostatic" models) there always seemed to be creep and their QR systems are not my preferred choice.

I own the Sirui K40X head and find it to be a very good piece of kit. It is complete overkill for your stated needs however. Given that you want two setups I would suggest that you consider a K20X first and see how you get on with it - I suspect that it will do all that you want but as you want a light and a heavy system it is bound to fit well with one of them. Then you can decide if the K10X or K30X would be the better option for the second head. Just a thought.

Whichever Sirui model you decide on I think you will have a pleasant surprise after the 488;-)a


Life is for living, cameras are to capture it (one day I will learn how!).

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FarmerTed1971
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Jan 14, 2018 15:32 |  #3

My K-30 is solid. Love it.


Getting better at this - Fuji Xt-2 - Fuji X-Pro2 - 18-55 - 35 f2 WR - 50-140 - flickr (external link) - www.scottaticephoto.co​m (external link)

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CyberDyneSystems
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Post has been last edited 1 month ago by CyberDyneSystems. 3 edits done in total.
Jan 14, 2018 15:52 |  #4

The 488 rc2 is tiny and weak compared to the Sirui heads, the K20 would be much sturdier. Moving up to K30 would get you the ability to handle REALLY heavy lens/body combos without breaking a sweat. I would assume therefore it will be significant overkill on the 55 legs you are putting it on.

So I am with John, get yourself a K20 X and try it on your larger tripod. In this way, you can't lose,. it is likely going to be the improvement you want on the legs, and that will give you the frame of reference to get the K10 or G20 for your smaller tripod.

If it's NOT everything you dreamed of, the K20 could go on your smaller legs, and then you could go K30 for the larger,. giving you lots of overkill on both sets of legs :)

The only reason I would change my suggestion to the K30 for starters , is if you want to;

A- Upgrade legs in the near future
B- Want to add a sidekick for a gimbal set up with a long lens.


In general I feel Sirui heads are in fact the best balance between quality, strength, weight and cost available.
You can get better, you can get cheaper, but the power to weight ratio and cost to quality ratio in this line is simply unequaled.


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SkedAddled
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Jan 14, 2018 17:15 |  #5

You guys offer good sense.
Seems logical too, now that the idea's been put in my head, to start at the middle
to begin with. That'll let me evaluate perfectly well if I'd want to put the 30
on the big legs, or the 10 on the small if the 20 delivers for my big stuff.

Thanks for your feedback guys; much appreciated.


CraigΣ 10-20|Tamron SP 28-80|Tamron SP 60-300|Soligor 75-260|Soligor 400|Soligor C/D 500|Zuiko 50 f/1.8|More Manual-Focus glass
Of course I'm all right! Why? What have you heard?!?

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CanonCameraFan
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Jan 15, 2018 20:22 |  #6

The advice up above is better than any i could give. I rarely use my tripod of ball head. But, I must say I found a real bargain by looking through the For Sale section here on POTN (where i buy much of my equipment now) and was thrilled to get a PhotoClam PC-40NS for maybe $80-100. It is certainly better than any of the Manfrotto heads I had in the past 35 years.


EOS 7D w/BG-E7 (3), 550EX (3), 430EX II, Vivitar 285HV, Opteka 6.5mm/3.5, Canon EF-S 10-18/4.5-5.6 IS STM, Canon EF-S 24/2.8 STM, Canon EF 40/2.8 STM, Canon EF 100mm/2.0 USM, Canon EF 70-300mm/4-5.6 L IS USM, Canon 77mm 500D Macro, Tamrac 614 Bag & 787 Backpack, Crumpler 8 MDH, 7 MDH, 6 MDH
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Tyguy
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Jan 16, 2018 09:24 |  #7

I've heard recommendations for the K40 as well... Bought a used copy which should arrive today. Maybe it's going to be a bit big for my 055XPROB? I use it for things like an astro tracking mount and a ballistic chornograph, so would rather have a bit too heavy than too light. Maybe the K30 would have been good enough after all, but the price difference wasn't big.


-Tyler
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FarmerTed1971
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Jan 16, 2018 09:29 as a reply to Tyguy's post |  #8

The diameter of the K40 is larger than the base on the Manfrotto 055. The K30 is perfect.


Getting better at this - Fuji Xt-2 - Fuji X-Pro2 - 18-55 - 35 f2 WR - 50-140 - flickr (external link) - www.scottaticephoto.co​m (external link)

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CyberDyneSystems
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Jan 17, 2018 11:25 |  #9

Tyguy wrote in post #18542171 (external link)
I've heard recommendations for the K40 as well... Bought a used copy which should arrive today. Maybe it's going to be a bit big for my 055XPROB? I use it for things like an astro tracking mount and a ballistic chornograph, so would rather have a bit too heavy than too light. Maybe the K30 would have been good enough after all, but the price difference wasn't big.


Off the top of my head, that K40 is rated for something like 4X the weight of the legs... ;)


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Tyguy
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Jan 19, 2018 09:00 |  #10

Yeah, I guess it's a little bigger. And rated heavier than the legs. Just means I need new legs :) Really love this K40 though!


-Tyler
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mikeinctown
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Jan 30, 2018 13:39 |  #11

FWIW the K-30 IIRC is cheaper through Greentoe than is the K-20. (I've also been looking for a new head to go with a set of Benro carbon legs I picked up over Cristmas.


Canon EOS 1D X | Canon EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM, EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM | Sigma 150-600mm F5-6.3 DG OS HSM | C |

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SkedAddled
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Feb 02, 2018 16:59 |  #12

mikeinctown wrote in post #18552605 (external link)
FWIW the K-30 IIRC is cheaper through Greentoe than is the K-20.

Thanks Mike, but I just pulled the trigger on a K-20X from a local eBay seller. Haven't looked into Greentoe
enough to decide if it's the way to go for me.

I expect to receive the K-20X February 6 or sooner. The 488RC2 is removed from my big legs,
and they'll receive the Sirui upon arrival for immediate evaluation. Already have 8 Arca-type plates
from another eBay seller in anticipation of a much better overall experience, with 5 of the plates
already fastened to cameras and lenses. :-)


CraigΣ 10-20|Tamron SP 28-80|Tamron SP 60-300|Soligor 75-260|Soligor 400|Soligor C/D 500|Zuiko 50 f/1.8|More Manual-Focus glass
Of course I'm all right! Why? What have you heard?!?

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KaosImagery
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Feb 03, 2018 15:36 |  #13

I had the 055XPROB / 488RC2 combo, it was a very decent tripod, but I wanted to go Arca style for compatibility. After some research I purchased the K-30X and it was a huge improvement over the 488.

Later on, I upgraded to an Induro carbon fiber set of legs which was lighter for travel, sturdier and better to handle in cold weather. The K-30X was a great match for that. I sold the Manfrotto gear.

Late last year I decided I wanted a second tripod to support the other end of a slider, and for shooting two cameras and the same time and automatically ordered another K-30X, eventually adding a nice Benro cf set of legs.

I am very happy with these ball heads.

FYI, Greentoe is a reverse auction site, you offer what you are willing to pay and the site tries to find a vendor that will accept the offer. I have purchased quite a few things through there including a 5D4 and always had good experiences. Deals come and go depending on how hungry the vendors are, but there can be a fair savings over retail. You just have to be patient, it may take a week to make a deal.


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SkedAddled
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Feb 05, 2018 18:36 |  #14

Well, you guys were spot-on.
The K-20X arrived today.

It's a significantly large improvement over the 488RC2.

Build quality appears better in all regards, finish is of a finer
quality, it's lighter in weight and smaller in size, and on top
of all that, it most certainly supports substantial weight.

My favorite feature, which I hadn't experienced until now,
is the separate tensioner adjustment. This alone makes the
price of admission worth it.

All in all, Jake was exactly on target:

In general I feel Sirui heads are in fact the best balance between quality, strength, weight and cost available. You can get better, you can get cheaper, but the power to weight ratio and cost to quality ratio in this line is simply unequaled.

Certainly the K-10X will be more than enough for my smaller legs, as the K-20X is
certainly more than capable enough for my currently heaviest gear I'm likely to put on it.

Thanks for steering me, everyone.
I'm a very happy camper now.


CraigΣ 10-20|Tamron SP 28-80|Tamron SP 60-300|Soligor 75-260|Soligor 400|Soligor C/D 500|Zuiko 50 f/1.8|More Manual-Focus glass
Of course I'm all right! Why? What have you heard?!?

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johnf3f
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Feb 06, 2018 18:16 as a reply to SkedAddled's post |  #15

Thought you might like the K20X!

I wasn't certain whether it would suit your light or heavy setup m- but it was bound to suit one of them!


Life is for living, cameras are to capture it (one day I will learn how!).

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Sirui ballheads
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