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FORUMS General Gear Talk Tripods, Monopods & Other Camera Support
Thread started 27 Jan 2018 (Saturday) 17:07
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Gimbals - Mongoose vs LensMaster

 
juanpafer
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Fort Myers, FL
Jan 27, 2018 17:07 |  #1

I am getting a 500L mkI and need a head for it. I currently have an Acratech GP that works very well with my 100-400, but it will probably wont with the new lens. I am interested in this type of very light side mount gimbals (Mongoose and LensMaster) but do not know if I will regret it and should go with a full gimbal or if one of the two is much better than the other (the LensMaster is much cheaper but seems to have very good reviews; I have seen the Mongoose with a 600 mkII and was very solid)
Any thoughts?


Juan

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johnf3f
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Wales
Jan 27, 2018 18:10 |  #2

I have the Lensmaster RH1 (side mount) and find it very good for my 300 F2.8, however for a lens like yours I would prefer a full Gimbal personally. The Lensmaster RH2 springs to mind as a great value option but, as in most things, if you spend more you get more.

For my large lens I use a Wimberley 2 and rate it as the best that I have tried - so far...... The new Gitzo Gimbal looks interesting but I have yet to try one. There are also from nice alternatives from Jobu and others.

Happy hunting :-)


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

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juanpafer
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Jan 28, 2018 05:03 |  #3

John, thanks for your reply. I will take a look at the RH2. Do you think that a sidekick is out of the question with the Acratech?


Juan

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graham121
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Pakenham, VIC, Aus
Jan 28, 2018 06:32 |  #4

Cannot comment on the mongoose but I have the Lensmaster RH2 and am very happy with it - 500ii with 2x works just fine.


A coupla bodies and a few lenses

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johnf3f
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Jan 28, 2018 18:49 |  #5

juanpafer wrote in post #18550752 (external link)
John, thanks for your reply. I will take a look at the RH2. Do you think that a sidekick is out of the question with the Acratech?

I am not a fan of side mounting on heavy/long lenses. There are two reasons for this - firstly me! I am far less adept at locking the lens foot into place and am paranoid that I will drop something expensive. Remember this is just me and my inept hands.
Secondly there is no adjustment for vertical balance - you know the one most people forget about! When both the horizontal and vertical balance are set the lens will stay put at any available angle with no tension on the pivots. Note the vertical balance is never along the axis of the lens - due to the camera on the back. This isn't a big deal but it can be annoying - especially with a gripped or Pro body.

Were you using a lighter lens then I think a side mount head would be fine - I do use one after all, but a near 4 kilo lens + camera? A full Gimbal is the better solution in my experience here.

Just my thoughts.


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

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FPP
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Perrysburg, OH
Jan 28, 2018 21:15 |  #6

juanpafer wrote in post #18550752 (external link)
John, thanks for your reply. I will take a look at the RH2. Do you think that a sidekick is out of the question with the Acratech?

I have the sidekick and it worked fine with my 100-400 but with my 150-600C, it works but I believe a full gimbal would be better.


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ShadowHillsPhoto
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Schoharie, NY
Jan 29, 2018 09:23 |  #7

I personally use a Wimberley with my 600mm IS II (and a 500mm v1 before that), but I had a chance to check out the latest Mongoose that someone was using with a 500mm IS II and it's a very impressive head. I'm not a huge fan of sidemounts and I don't like the cradle they offer (no vertical adjustment), otherwise I would consider one. It's very well made and I can see the appeal. I think it would handle your 500mm v1 just fine.




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Vintage ­ Racer
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France
Jan 30, 2018 02:08 |  #8

I use the Lensmaster RH2. - Brilliant build quality and great value for money!




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Tom ­ Reichner
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Omak, in north-central Washington state, USA
Jan 31, 2018 01:00 |  #9

juanpafer wrote in post #18550376 (external link)
I am interested in this type of very light side mount gimbals (Mongoose and LensMaster) but do not know if I will regret it and should go with a full gimbal . . .

Any thoughts?

johnf3f wrote in post #18551276 (external link)
I am not a fan of side mounting on heavy/long lenses.

Secondly there is no adjustment for vertical balance - you know the one most people forget about! When both the horizontal and vertical balance are set the lens will stay put at any available angle with no tension on the pivots. A full Gimbal is the better solution in my experience here.

ShadowHillsPhoto wrote in post #18551632 (external link)
I personally use a Wimberley with my 600mm IS II (and a 500mm v1 before that) . . .
I'm not a huge fan of sidemounts and I don't like the cradle they offer (no vertical adjustment), otherwise I would consider one.

.
I have to side with John and Shadow Hills, inasmuch as gimbal preferences are concerned.

I use a Wimberley 2 for all of my Gimbal needs. . I have a Wimberley 1, but it is not machined to close tolerances like the v2 is, and I only have it as a desperation backup (should the need ever arise).

I seem to use every last bit of balance and versatility that can possibly be wrought from my Wimberley .... not to mention the ease and speed of mounting a big heavy lens to it. . When you take your big lens off of the tripod, and put it back on the tripod, literally dozens of times every day, that actually makes a big difference.

I can't imagine trying to make due with less adjustment versatility, nor with more vulnerable balancing. . What the Wimberley costs in terms of dollars and weight, it more than makes up for with its ultra-fine tension adjustments, its balance, and it's adjustability. . After seeing people use side-mount gimbals, I can't even imagine trying to use one myself, especially after I've been "spoiled" with the Wimberley v2.

.


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juanpafer
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Fort Myers, FL
Feb 03, 2018 14:59 |  #10

Thanks for your input everyone.
I contacted Rob and went for an RH2.
I will report back when I receive it.


Juan

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Gimbals - Mongoose vs LensMaster
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