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FORUMS Canon Cameras, Lenses & Accessories Canon Accessories 
Thread started 12 Feb 2014 (Wednesday) 12:56
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gitzo legs now which Ball head?

 
peter_n
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Feb 14, 2014 20:35 |  #31

Scott is the owner of the company and the main mechanical design guy, so he certainly knows what he's talking about! I have a new GP as well after trying one out last year, I also have an Acratech Ultimate on my travel tripod. The heads are really nicely made and from owners' reports very durable.

If you shoot in extreme environments they're virtually maintenance free because of their open designs. Right now we're having a bad winter here in New England but no issues with my ballheads unlike previously. I'm sure you'll have the same experience Andrew.


~Peter

  
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Colt4570
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Feb 16, 2014 03:50 |  #32

peter_n wrote in post #16690199 (external link)
Scott is the owner of the company and the main mechanical design guy, so he certainly knows what he's talking about! I have a new GP as well after trying one out last year, I also have an Acratech Ultimate on my travel tripod. The heads are really nicely made and from owners' reports very durable.

If you shoot in extreme environments they're virtually maintenance free because of their open designs. Right now we're having a bad winter here in New England but no issues with my ballheads unlike previously. I'm sure you'll have the same experience Andrew.

+1, Great design and great cutomer service. I have had the GP for about 2 years and really like it.


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czar2000
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Feb 19, 2014 10:56 |  #33

I'm about to buy Acratech GP-S head but can not decide which clamp to go. Lever or Screw? Why?
I have used to RRS screw clamp and want to know Acratech's compared to it.


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peter_n
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Feb 20, 2014 08:29 |  #34

I prefer screw clamps to lever clamps and bought an Acratech GP with a screw clamp last month. I didn't like using their screw clamp because (a) wide open a RRS plate is a very tight fit into the clamp if you top-load like I do, (b) the clamp closes very quickly so I was unsure about whether I had it fully locked, and (c) the knob on the clamp is pretty small.

I sent the clamp back and got their lever clamp and I'm much happier with that, it's easier to use and just feels more secure. I've never used a RRS screw clamp but I've used a number of Markins screw clamps and like them a lot. The Markins knobs are big and I've never worried about a secure connection with those clamps.

The Acratech clamp appears to be designed to be as quick to use as a lever clamp, especially with the fast-locking mechanism which I assume is done with a coarse thread on the clamp spindle. A tighter thread makes for more turns for a given movement but at least you can turn it and you get the sense that you've really tightened the camera into the clamp. I never got that feeling with the Acratech clamp.

For things Acratech you should read this thread as it includes at least one person who had issues with their lever clamp as I recall.


~Peter

  
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mswobo
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Feb 20, 2014 09:03 |  #35

I think all your choices are winners ... once you have one you will be thrilled... Markin owner here... love mine on my gitzo...tried acratech fabulous product. Had an Acra Swiss was awesome but heavy.

Good luck..


Nikon D850 and a bunch of stuff, I have learned a lot here when I was shooting Canon, staying to keep learning..."Every time I set up I learn something new".

  
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sawsedge
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Feb 20, 2014 09:38 |  #36

peter_n wrote in post #16703813 (external link)
I prefer screw clamps to lever clamps and bought an Acratech GP with a screw clamp last month. I didn't like using their screw clamp because (a) wide open a RRS plate is a very tight fit into the clamp if you top-load like I do, (b) the clamp closes very quickly so I was unsure about whether I had it fully locked, and (c) the knob on the clamp is pretty small.

I sent the clamp back and got their lever clamp and I'm much happier with that, it's easier to use and just feels more secure. I've never used a RRS screw clamp but I've used a number of Markins screw clamps and like them a lot. The Markins knobs are big and I've never worried about a secure connection with those clamps.

The Acratech clamp appears to be designed to be as quick to use as a lever clamp, especially with the fast-locking mechanism which I assume is done with a coarse thread on the clamp spindle. A tighter thread makes for more turns for a given movement but at least you can turn it and you get the sense that you've really tightened the camera into the clamp. I never got that feeling with the Acratech clamp.

For things Acratech you should read this thread as it includes at least one person who had issues with their lever clamp as I recall.


I felt the same way with the Kirk fast screw clamp that I tried. It does not provide the same sense of security as my older slow (many turns!) screw knobs. I ended up with a RRS lever clamp, which locks just as tightly as my old screw clamp.


- John

  
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czar2000
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Feb 20, 2014 11:15 |  #37

Thanks for the inputs. I will ask if Acratech sell ball head only.
Since I will be using RRS L plate for 5d3, I'd like to stick with RRS clamps .


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sawsedge
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Feb 20, 2014 11:56 |  #38

czar2000 wrote in post #16704151 (external link)
Thanks for the inputs. I will ask if Acratech sell ball head only.
Since I will be using RRS L plate for 5d3, I'd like to stick with RRS clamps .

That won't work on the GP-series of heads. They use a different mount.

My RRS clamp sits on an Arca-Swiss Z1.


- John

  
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peter_n
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Feb 20, 2014 14:01 |  #39

czar2000 wrote in post #16704151 (external link)
Thanks for the inputs. I will ask if Acratech sell ball head only.
Since I will be using RRS L plate for 5d3, I'd like to stick with RRS clamps .

You can't buy the GP series of Acratech heads without also buying an associated clamp. I use a RRS lever clamp on my Acratech Ultimate head but that head doesn't invert so they sell it without a clamp if that's what you want.

An Acratech lever clamp will work fine with your RRS L-bracket.

sawsedge wrote in post #16704242 (external link)
That won't work on the GP-series of heads. They use a different mount.

John is correct, getting an Acratech clamp is a requirement if you want to use the full functionality of the head. I'm using both the Acratech and RRS lever clamps and have no preference in use, but the Acratech clamp is much lighter than the RRS clamp.


~Peter

  
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czar2000
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Feb 20, 2014 14:36 |  #40

OK now I got it.
If their clamp is as good as RRS I will go with it.
Thanks guys


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spooled180
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Feb 20, 2014 17:26 |  #41

Thanks Peter and sawsedge for all the help.
I will be selecting the gp with lever clamp as I have also heard it is not only light but reliable and smaller in size. Plus Scott has great customer service. Along with an amazing warranty.


Canon: Flm: Kirk: Rrs: Sirui: Vanguard

  
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peter_n
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Feb 21, 2014 11:58 |  #42

spooled180 wrote in post #16704952 (external link)
I will be selecting the gp with lever clamp as I have also heard it is not only light but reliable and smaller in size. Plus Scott has great customer service. Along with an amazing warranty.

I think you'll be pleased with your choice. Below is mine with its new lever clamp holding on tight to a TLR. So far so good with the clamp, it's not self-adjusting like my RRS clamps but I've set it once for a RRS plate and haven't had to adjust it yet. That's a Sunwayfoto plate on my Rolleiflex and that plate is a perfect fit for the clamp too.


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spooled180
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Feb 21, 2014 16:36 |  #43

That is a nice looking setup. Do you have any concerns with the neck of the gp being taller than others. In this link http://www.ronmartblog​.com …atives-to-rrs-bh.html?m=1 (external link) though it is old and seems to be unfair to the GP due to its design says it is a concern. I doubt I see putting more than 20lbs on top.

Just curious to see what you think and if you feel the same as the article or see it my way of a unfair review and see no concerns also. Thank you again.

-Andrew


Canon: Flm: Kirk: Rrs: Sirui: Vanguard

  
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peter_n
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Feb 22, 2014 08:43 |  #44

^ I'm going to apply what psychologists call a halo effect to this. I read the comment on the GP's ball stem, then moved on to the Arca-Swiss Z1 review directly underneath since I've used a Z1 for a few years. I immediately saw this: "No variable tension knob as it simply isn’t needed." Not only did he completely miss the tension control in the ball locking knob, he obviously also missed the indexed ring that allows you to set and reset the ball drag tension for different rigs very quickly. If you read the comments no-one has picked him up on this either.

It's unbelievable, and presumably he didn't even ask himself "what's that little silver knob inside the main knob for?" or "what's this indexed ring on the main knob for, it doesn't seem to do anything?".

If he skated over the review of the Z1 then he must have skated over the others too, so I'd just ignore what he says. Also I would trust Scott Dordick's engineering know-how against this guy's opinion any day.


~Peter

  
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sawsedge
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Feb 24, 2014 12:39 |  #45

peter_n wrote in post #16708577 (external link)
If he skated over the review of the Z1 then he must have skated over the others too, so I'd just ignore what he says. Also I would trust Scott Dordick's engineering know-how against this guy's opinion any day.

I would say he did that with the Kirk BH-1 review as well... if not, he got a very bad copy.


- John

  
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gitzo legs now which Ball head?
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