Ravelli AVT Video Camera Tripod with Fluid Drag Head – Worth It?

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ravelli-tripod

I've received several inquiries about this particular Tripod with Fluid Head, but i've no clue. Since there's a continuous amount of questions, maybe this post will spur up some comments about it. Marketed as the Ravelli AVT Video Camera Tripod with Fluid Drag Head, it's possible it could be sold under different names as well. I think I remember seeing something similar over at B&H Photo Video. Quick release plates look very similar to Manfrotto designs, so I wonder if it's cross compatible.

Other Technical details:
* Compact And Light Yet Still Supports Cameras Up To 16LBS
* Geared Center Elevator With Hand Crank
* 3 Channel Quick Release Locking Leg Sections
* New Horizontal Quick Release Latches. (allowing you to release all leg locks at once)
* Padded Foam Grips On Two Of The Three Legs To Safely Grab And Move Your Tripod

Anyone seen this on the streets, or have any more information if it's better than the Fancier or Weifeng stuff?

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Ravelli AVT Video Camera Tripod with Fluid Drag Head



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15 thoughts on “Ravelli AVT Video Camera Tripod with Fluid Drag Head – Worth It?

  1. Ricky

    @ conrad

    It is funny that amateurs talking bullshit about tech gear and rating the gear negativ. The head is a 1:1 copy of a former manfrotto head (early product from 1980s) and was later copied by american & Uk manufacturer (like Sanford & Davis etc). I worked with the same head in 1991 with 16mm film and it is "okay" for Amateurs/Semi-Pro.

    Its a 60 bucks product and so never compare it to 199-650 doller fluid head...its does not make any sense. It is a cheap video head and does its job well. If you think that you can work on pro productions with it? No way! But still its a neat product for a very nbeat price for any beginner or amateur

  2. conrad

    I will second any comments suggesting that the quality of these tripods are poor. The head is horrible, and is not well designed. I've used them before, but haven't been for the last several months, and as I go through a ton of gear, I'm having a hard time trying to remember the specifics. There were problems with tilting and the drag adjustment. And out of the three legs that were cycled among the rental house I work with, 2/3 legs quickly developed tension issues. They were also clunky and over sized for what they are. A certain pass.

  3. peederj

    Here is my Amazon review of the pro version. I have no affiliation with Ravelli or Cheetah Mounts or Amazon and took no consideration for this review, just a satisfied customer.

    This review is from: Ravelli AVTP Professional 75mm Video Camera Tripod with Fluid Drag Head (Electronics)

    Is it really worth buying the Sachtler?

    The question is, how many shots are going to be blown using this setup that would have been pulled off flawlessly on the Sachtler. If the budget allows for it, sure, get the Sachtler...no one got fired for buying a Sachtler, right? But this thing could be used by anyone for any digital work anywhere, and the better operators are going to be able to pull off the shot the same.

    The main thing the head is lacking is a counterbalance spring on tilts. If you need that, then yes buy a better head.

    The thing that turned me off in the photos on this listing were the cheap rubber feet. Well I am happy to announce that the feet have been upgraded to the same spike/rubber combo used in the APGL4. They've also added a retractable leg holding cord. The photos on this listing should be updated...those cheap feet are a turnoff and they realized that.

    The pan is stiff at its fastest setting, but that is probably right. If you are using a very light camera and no sandbags it could be a problem I suppose. Some people have been able to loosen the screw deep inside there. I don't think I will bother trying. Rather, after exercising the unit and breaking it in, it smoothes up and I have been able to do whip pans etc. perfectly well. There is little or no backlash...the rubber band trick can get rid of all of it.

    People have reported a stuttering or grinding sound developing on pans, I have diagnosed this and it is the pan locking mechanism being set too loose by the operator. So set the pan lock just loose enough for your pan, no more, and you won't have the stuttering.

    The tilt grip oddly came set up for lefties, it is reversible easily enough and now it makes sense. Al the tightening handles are repositionable, you pull them out and reposition them without affecting the screw, this solves the problems some inexperienced people have reported on e.g. loosening the quick release plate or the tilt lock hitting the pan arm. Neither happens when properly configured anyway.

    I am not a fan of the hard rubber handles, I shaved down the poor molding and sharp edges with a knife, but I do imagine they will last for a long time compared to more comfortable foams. In general, you will need to go over the whole unit tightening stuff up and touching up, but that is to be expected from such a bargain. If you are not handy with things, I think you should get a friend who is to help you on your shoots.

    The legs are as good as you need, heavy, but I was able to hang off them without slippage. You can consider the head a freebie if you want, it's good enough like I said, or you can put e.g. a Manfrotto 504HDV on these legs if you want.

    I declare this and its photo brother APGL4 just fine and everything that costs more is a luxury.

  4. I suppose my version is the pro version. it looks like this one, but does not have a center crank. Mine is built like a tank and is therefor on the heavy side. It's ideal for a long slider as Sean mentioned.

    My only complaint after using it for some time is the rubber pads on the feet have to be carefully monitored or you may lose one. I've had to backtrack and go looking for one that fell off.

    I like the head but the quick release plate is not the same as on the Manfrotto monopod. This one is wider.

  5. Sean O'Donnell

    I have the Pro model and it works great for me. Made a zaza slider and mounted one of the quick releases to it. The quick releases are awesome for stuff like this. To answer shams: Mine is centered and works great, though I have only shot with a small camcorder and small dslr.

    Cheetah mounts however doesn't sell extra release plates so I am looking for some, or something that is compatible. Does anyone have a lead on any?

  6. JR

    looks like a davis & sanford fm18 head, the fm18 is a decent head, not great just good enough to achieve smooth motion, no quick release, the plate is a pain to remove and to lock on the head.

  7. Motegi

    I have the same tripod legs that I got with a trigger release head. The legs are strudy but HEAVY.

    The Ravelli was on my short list but your reviews of the Weifeng 717 pushed me in that direction instead.

  8. Charles

    I have been using one for a year, it has been fantastic. rock solid and operates smooth as silk. I use it with a Pany HMC40 daily. I do think these cheap tripods and heads are a gamble. Some are great, others are junk, even on the exactly same model. Myguess is it breaks down to little quality control. If you get one that is not perfect, exchange it for another. I pick this one over my more expensive heavier one every time.

  9. shams

    Will this be steady if i used it for holding up a slider from the middle, and will the head work for dslr slider.

  10. Korogodsky

    I purchased this tripod and the avtp about a year ago. I ended up returning this model but kept the avtp. The cranking mechanism failed after first use. The company told me I could try to take it apart and modify it like a previous user did. I decided not to do that. They refunded me the money and paid for it to be shipped back. Cheetahmounts had great customer service, no hassle. By the way the quick release plates on these tripods are larger than the manfrotto one I tried this a while back. I am very pleased with the avtp though. Very solid, decent pan and tilt action, heavy, nice locking system for legs. I own a 701hdv head, in comparison I can say that it isn't as smooth as that one but it's damn close. Going back to the avt, totally not worth it in my opinion. The legs didn't lock well. You have to adjust each leg to level. The rubber feet SUCK. I would say the head isn't as good as the avtp even though they are so close. You have been warned. If you have any questions that I havn't covered feel free to ask.

    I love this site. Woooohooooo!

  11. I second Andy's comments. The legs are actually quite sturdy, HEAVY, like 7-10 pounds I think. The head is not fluid. It's smooth but not fluid and there are cheap plastic pieces that break off. The case that came with mine (a green canvas piece-o) is not magnificent either. In all cases, I've used it for interviews to good effect as in small reframings but it doesn't give you long fluid pans like a real fluid head. I'm going to buy a real head and stick it on these legs.

  12. Andy

    Unfortunately they aren't too hot. The legs are wobbly and it's difficult to pan and tilt smoothly at the same time.

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