Tag Archives: manfrotto fluid head

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I'm sure many of you already know about this particular Velbon fluid head. It's been a hit for a while now, and I thought it was finally time for me to test one out. As much as possible I love shooting with smaller cameras, and this fluid head was a great surprise. Works great as a spare head on the Konova slider instead of using the static Ball Head (and cheaper too).

If you're just starting out with a GH2, Olympus Pen, or Sony NEX-5n camera you'll get some truly fluid movements with this sub $30 dollar fluid head. It's no wonder this fluid head gets rave reviews over at Amazon and B&HPhoto websites. Best bang for the buck no doubt. Here's a few things to keep in mind about the Velbon. It's plastic, all plastic (except for a bit of metal on the pan bar). Although it doesn't feel fragile to break in under your camera, it's not designed to be thrown underneath all your other heavy equipment or to be tossed around.

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Size Comparison (Left) Manfrotto 701HDV (Right) Velbon Fluid Head

Don't get the bundled tripods as i've heard nothing but horror stories. You'd be better off buying another one like the 190XDB from Manfrotto (found here). Don't overload the thing. I used a Canon 5D Mark II and Canon 100mm Macro F/2.8 which worked well, but the head does not have a 'balance' feature so it wanted to tilt forward with the heavy lens. It's too bad the build quality comes in short, because the performance is truly amazing for such a cheap head. Often you'll find the head on sale as low as $26 dollars, and for a spare head on your DSLR video slider, track dolly, or even one for your Monopod it's a deal. You can find them on sale at B&H (click here)

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find-price-button Velbon PH-368 Video Fluid Head

or at Amazon (click here) available at both B&H and Amazon (click here)

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find-price-button Velbon Fluid Video Tripod head - via Amazon

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There's been a few announcements of Sachtler's latest Ace fluid head + tripod, and it's finally available for pre-order. What's all the buzz about? Well Sachtler tripod systems normally run several thousands of dollars. In fact, just a pan bar alone for a Sachtler Fluid head could run you well over $300 dollars. So it's surprising that this new Sachtler Ace Tripod system is as affordable as Manfrotto gear. With all of the incredible shrinking video cameras, my guess is Sachtler will stay in this space and produce more affordable systems going forward. There's just too much they're missing out on by staying overly high end.

So what could hold back product sales? Well for one, Manfrotto's pretty much cornered the market in Quick Release adapters. Choosing a Sachtler over a Manfrotto 501HDV tripod system like these (click here) means you'll lose the ability to move from one rig to the next with ease. Oh and hopefully the bad rap that Litepanels is having won't affect the sales of this product, because Sachtler is also a Vitec ground brand. There's already several comments about banning Vitec products since that Litepanels announcement.

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find-price-button Sachtler ACE Fluid Head Tripod System

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