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$99 or $500 Gimbal
  
 
Lars Johnsson
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p.2 #1 · $99 or $500 Gimbal


Javier Munoz wrote:
A gimbal is an amazingly simple piece of equipment. The price that Wimberley et al charge is on the outrageous side of the equation. Gimbal heads should be priced similarly to the manfrotto 393. Having a sturdy piece of metal with a couple of knobs at 100USD is not far-fetched.

BTW, it is my understanding that RRS also outsources its products.


The Manfrotto 393 is a much more simple equipment. And RRS is only made in the USA.
If it's so easy to make a good gimbal head for a very low cost, why don't you start to make and sell them then, You will be a millionaire rather quick.
And Zeiss or Leica lenses should only cost $ 100-200, It's just a pice of metal and glass........



Apr 19, 2012 at 04:49 PM
Bifurcator
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p.2 #2 · $99 or $500 Gimbal


I think you would be surprised at what a totally low volume gimbal heads sell in. I think if you could make them for $10 and sell them for $100 you would still barely be able to make your house & car payments from the proceeds - and that's if you have the killer web page and advertised/sold on all the auction sites too.

And I think that is exactly why Wimberley wants almost $600 for something that I agree should cost closer to $100 for. (OK, $200 max...)




Apr 19, 2012 at 05:18 PM
Lars Johnsson
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p.2 #3 · $99 or $500 Gimbal


Bifurcator wrote:
I think you would be surprised at what a totally low volume gimbal heads sell in. I think if you could make them for $10 and sell them for $100 you would still barely be able to make your house & car payments from the proceeds - and that's if you have the killer web page and advertised/sold on all the auction sites too.

And I think that is exactly why Wimberley wants almost $600 for something that I agree should cost closer to $100 for. (OK, $200 max...)



I don't think they sell in that low volumes. Most people I know that owns a big tele also own some kind of Gimbal head. And there are very few brands making them if you compare to ballheads or tripods. And remember that a good ballhead nearly cost as much as a good Gimbal head



Apr 19, 2012 at 05:26 PM
Bifurcator
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p.2 #4 · $99 or $500 Gimbal


Sometimes more.

But if they sell in any kind of notable quantities then I'm with Javier in thinking - Whaaadaaripoff!

But that's OK, I think that about a lot photographic equipment. Mostly lighting equipment but some support systems too.

It would be different if minimum wage was $30/hr or something tho.




Apr 19, 2012 at 05:45 PM
Javier Munoz
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p.2 #5 · $99 or $500 Gimbal


Lars,

I like what I do for a living but I can assure that they can be made 2-3 times cheaper with similar quality. I would just not make so much profit as they do. But I agree with Bifurcator, the main issue might be on the lack of market. I am sure everyone you know with large lenses has a gimbal head (myself included) but there are not that many people with large lenses as you might think.

Regarding RRS, I stand corrected. I barely remembered a thread from a while ago where somebody argued that they were made in Asia.

BTW, Leica should not be sold at 100-200 since the amount of precision required to grind, shape and polish the glass and assemble it to the metal backbone far exceeds that of a Gimbal. (not to mention R&D investments) Still, I think that most of Leica products could be correctly priced at 500-1000 USD. You are paying a whole lot of money for bragging rights



Apr 19, 2012 at 06:09 PM
Lars Johnsson
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p.2 #6 · $99 or $500 Gimbal


Every lens, camera, ballhead should and could be sold for one third of the real price according to the forum experts


Apr 19, 2012 at 07:22 PM
Bifurcator
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p.2 #7 · $99 or $500 Gimbal


So true.

Also a lot depends on what the company thinks the living standards should be for it's workers and management. I might be able to make and sell something like that Gimbal head for $100 to $200 from within the USA but everyone in the company and their kids are going to pay for it via a lower standard of living. No private schools for little Johnny, most employees driving 8 year old used cars, vacations scaled down to near-by drives, no nice office space and uglier working environments, and so on. I know that from having done it in the distant past - though not with photography equipment.

Lenses are a totally different story tho. High quality glass-works, R&D, engineering, marketing, packaging, shipping, and after sales support are freek'n expensive! Someone like Leica for example I guess doesn't actually have much of a margin - maybe 10% or so max.

Someone like Panasonic can charge less because there's very little engineering, almost no R&D and a simply farcical after-sales support program. And even with all the skimping and reneging they do they still charge a lot for a really low quality product. I think Sony thought not to skimp quite so much on some of their lens models and just paid Zeiss to do most of the hard parts - which is smarter IMO.






Apr 19, 2012 at 08:17 PM
Sjjindra
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p.2 #8 · $99 or $500 Gimbal


Bif

Thanks for the heads up. I just ordered one.

Just a comment, if I understand correctly (I am no expert though) a patent only provides protection for from 14 to 20 years so the inventor can make profit for developing the product. We often see knock-offs and generics become legally available when a patent expires. Then it is a matter of quality and a competitive pricing.

Thanks again.

Edited on Apr 19, 2012 at 10:37 PM · View previous versions



Apr 19, 2012 at 09:46 PM
Javier Munoz
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p.2 #9 · $99 or $500 Gimbal


Lars Johnsson wrote:
Every lens, camera, ballhead should and could be sold for one third of the real price according to the forum experts


Lens and ballheads (lens plates, camera and flash brackets, quick releases, focusing rails....) work with higher profit margins. Cameras dont get that much money.

At any case, it is not my intention to change people ways. If the price of those products suits you and you are OK with their ways then by all means invest in that equipment. I happen to be an "in betweener". On one side I am against knock-offs but I am also against what I consider rip offs.



Apr 19, 2012 at 09:57 PM
Bifurcator
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p.2 #10 · $99 or $500 Gimbal


Sjjindra wrote:
Bif

Thanks for the heads up. I just ordered one.

Just a comment, if I understand correctly (I am no expert though) a patton only provides protection for from 14 to 20 years so the inventor can make profit for developing the product. We often see knock-offs and generics become legally available when a patton expires. Then it is a matter of quality and a competitive pricing.

Thanks again.


Yeah, that sounds right. And then the patent comes up for renewal or something right? Why, how old is the WH-200 patent?

And actually from what I understand if you invent something it's like automatically patented - err, you have protection under patent law for some length of time (maybe the same as if you filed in the first place).

But I dunno if there is any stated purpose behind patent law or not. I mean I dunno if it's specifically for securing a profit with the intent of further development or more based on the private ownership of the workings, purpose, and shape of an invention - or what.




Apr 19, 2012 at 10:16 PM
 

Search in Used Dept. 



Lars Johnsson
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p.2 #11 · $99 or $500 Gimbal


Javier Munoz wrote:
Lens and ballheads (lens plates, camera and flash brackets, quick releases, focusing rails....) work with higher profit margins. Cameras dont get that much money.

At any case, it is not my intention to change people ways. If the price of those products suits you and you are OK with their ways then by all means invest in that equipment. I happen to be an "in betweener". On one side I am against knock-offs but I am also against what I consider rip offs.


You (or I) don't know anything about that. You are just guessing and giving your opinion here. Some lenses or ballheads have high margins and others low. And the same with the other stuff you write about

And yes I'm sure there are high profit margins on these lenses.

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/585950-GREY/Canon_2042B002WB_EF_S_18_55mm_f_3_5_5_6_IS.html

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/543923-GREY/Canon_2044B002AA_EF_S_55_250mm_f_4_5_6_IS.html

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/477230-GREY/Nikon_2170_18_55mm_f_3_5_5_6G_ED_II.html

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/819774-REG/Rokinon_500P_500_mm_f_8_0_Telephoto.html

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/247091-USA/Nikon_2137_Normal_AF_Nikkor_50mm.html

And here are some ballheads that have those high margins you write about

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/300403-REG/Slik_618_606_SBH_60_Compact_Ballhead_60.html

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/272512-REG/Sunpak_620_711_Medium_Ballhead_Supports.html

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/527934-REG/Giottos_MH1104_330C_MH_1104_Pro_Series_II.html


Edited on Apr 19, 2012 at 10:30 PM · View previous versions



Apr 19, 2012 at 10:26 PM
tuanv1980
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p.2 #12 · $99 or $500 Gimbal


Not sure if I want to roll the dice with thousands of dollars worth of equipments on knocked off.


Apr 19, 2012 at 10:27 PM
Bifurcator
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p.2 #13 · $99 or $500 Gimbal


very understandable!

I doubt I'd put the Canon EF 800mm F/5.6L IS USM on it either.

But for a $15,000 lens I guess I could afford a $600 mount.








Apr 19, 2012 at 10:36 PM
Javier Munoz
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p.2 #14 · $99 or $500 Gimbal


Lars Johnsson wrote:
You (or I) don't know anything about that. You are just guessing and giving your opinion here. Some lenses or ballheads have high margins and others low. And the same with the other stuff you write about

And yes I'm sure there are high profit margins on these lenses.




Do you really want to play that game?


Try this

http://www.amazon.com/Leica-50mm-SUMMICRON-M-Black-System/dp/B00007LKHY

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/303253-REG/Wimberley_M_8_Module_8_M_8_Perpendicular.html

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/276977-REG/Wimberley_P_5_P5_Universal_Quick_Release.html





Apr 19, 2012 at 11:53 PM
Thatspeck
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p.2 #15 · $99 or $500 Gimbal


C'mon Javier, that $52 universal quick release plate is made with "silky smooth anodized aluminum". That stuff is like $20 and oz. just for the material...


Apr 20, 2012 at 02:19 AM
cputeq
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p.2 #16 · $99 or $500 Gimbal


Hrm, awesome find and thank you for posting it.

I've been wanting to get the gimbal experience with my old Rokkor 600mm f/5.6 (on a NEX 5N no less), but I really didn't want to buy a gimbal head that costs more than the damn lens does.

This might just convince me to try it out.


So, if I have a big lens and I buy this, would I need to buy a special lens plate, or does this gimbal also come with that plate?




Apr 20, 2012 at 04:49 AM
Lars Johnsson
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p.2 #17 · $99 or $500 Gimbal


Javier Munoz wrote:
Do you really want to play that game?

Try this

http://www.amazon.com/Leica-50mm-SUMMICRON-M-Black-System/dp/B00007LKHY

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/303253-REG/Wimberley_M_8_Module_8_M_8_Perpendicular.html

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/276977-REG/Wimberley_P_5_P5_Universal_Quick_Release.html



But you wrote that lenses and ballheads had high profit margins. I wrote that some have low margins and others high margins. And you did prove that my point was right here some has low and other high margins.



Apr 20, 2012 at 05:03 AM
Sven Jeppesen
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p.2 #18 · $99 or $500 Gimbal


tuanv1980 wrote:
Not sure if I want to roll the dice with thousands of dollars worth of equipments on knocked off.


+1



Apr 20, 2012 at 05:09 AM
Sven Jeppesen
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p.2 #19 · $99 or $500 Gimbal


Javier Munoz wrote:
A gimbal is an amazingly simple piece of equipment. The price that Wimberley et al charge is on the outrageous side of the equation. Gimbal heads should be priced similarly to the manfrotto 393. Having a sturdy piece of metal with a couple of knobs at 100USD is not far-fetched.

BTW, it is my understanding that RRS also outsources its products.


I think it's funny that somebody living in San Francisco Bay claims that RRS outsorce their product. RRS are from San Luis Obispo California And make their products in your own state and country



Apr 20, 2012 at 05:13 AM
justruss
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p.2 #20 · $99 or $500 Gimbal


Of course, a student of innovation, IP, and modern capitalism might have a longer view on patents:

The rule is that on one hand patents can spur innovation, while on the other hand patents can indeed become an obstacle to innovation. Protection of innovative ideas so that prices can be kept high to recoup "invention costs" (time, money, other) creates an incentive to experiment and innovate. But, patents can also be used to prevent leaner, better competition from finding money on the table (which is about as close as one gets to a definition of capitalism finding efficiencies) and taking it-- or tinkering with someone else's product to make it both better and cheaper.

Allow for very broad patents, and nobody can tinker.
Allow for very narrowly defined patents, and patents don't protect.
Allow for very long-lasting patents, and at a certain point you prevent ongoing progress/innovation/efficiency seeking behavior.
Allow for only very brief-lasting patents and you lose longer-term, more costly innovation-- at least if we're assuming our system of reward is monetary and not of some other unit (like respect, legacy, stewardship; it's safe to say our current system rests on monetary reward).

So in this conversation about IP, patents, efficiencies, and economics-- notably in markets that don't agree on the rules of IP law-- there are few black and white cases. One can argue in many directions-- moral, economic, etc-- and one should probably consider the divergence between Law as it is and Law as it could be to achieve "best" outcomes. The two often do not align in practice for a variety of reasons (one of which is influence of money, which, ironically, can be produced in large quantities on the bases of the laws said money can influence...)

None of this is taking a particular stance on this particular product. But I think it's worth keeping in mind.



Apr 20, 2012 at 06:26 AM
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