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Archive 2012 · Tripods, question I haven't seen answered
  
 
Charles Gallo
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p.1 #1 · Tripods, question I haven't seen answered


Hey Gang,
I looks like it MIGHT be time to replace my Gitzo G220. Love it except for 3 things
1)Weight - those old 'heavyweight' Al tripods are well, heavy
2)Too SHORT - I either have to bend over or raise the center column
3)stiffness when using long lenses - seems 'good enough" unless I have to raise the center column, or worse, BOTH sections of the column

Not going to get into Gitzo vs RRS vs Induro vs whoever your favorite is right now

The question is: (using Gitzo terms)
I could buy a fairly tall 3 series tripod with 3 sections that gives me a working height (sans center column) of around 60 inches - give or take
OR
Buy a 4 series FOUR section that IF I put out the lowest leg section gives me more than that, but with the lowest section in, is in the same kind of working range

I know everyone always says 'better 3 sections than 4' - but the idea of having the stiffness of the 4 series if I have the lowest section IN appeals to me - how do they compare - a 3 series, 3 section, all legs out vs a 4 section 4 series, lowest legs IN



Nov 25, 2012 at 04:41 PM
Red Rover
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p.1 #2 · Tripods, question I haven't seen answered


CG, I am also debating between 3 or 4 leg models. What 4 section tripod are you looking at that is as tall with the 4th section in as a fully extended 3 section model? I have not seen any but would be interested.


Nov 25, 2012 at 05:27 PM
Charles Gallo
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p.1 #3 · Tripods, question I haven't seen answered


Well, I'm thinking say something like a 3531 (50 inches no center - 24 inches closed, ) vs say a 4542LS (61 inches with all 4 sections - 24 inches closed) or even a GT4552GTS - which is 94 inches - or even one of the smaller 4 series, and give up some height

Basically the question is - how does a 4 section 4 series match up stiffness wise (even with the 4th section out or without it out) vs a 3 series 3 section. We all know you generally don't try to use a 4 section because the bottom section is light, but does going up a series compensate?



Nov 25, 2012 at 05:54 PM
EB-1
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p.1 #4 · Tripods, question I haven't seen answered


There is not so much difference between 3 and four sections as there is between series. A 4 series with four sections should be very solid.

EBH



Nov 25, 2012 at 07:19 PM
Ruahrc
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p.1 #5 · Tripods, question I haven't seen answered


We all know you generally don't try to use a 4 section because the bottom section is light, but does going up a series compensate?

Is this really true? I see so many here and elsewhere choose 4-section legs because they fold up a little shorter, and have never heard of anyone complaining that extending the last section makes their tripod too unstable. Maybe they all do it without saying because it's obvious, but I have never seen anything to that point.

I think back in the day, the 4th section may have made an appreciable difference in stability. However, it would seem to me (judging by the comments and anecdotes I have read) the more recent leg lock designs (especially from those of the top-tier manufacturers like Gitzo or RRS) are good enough such that a 4 section tripod has no practical stability loss over a similar 3 section.

FWIW I have a 3-section tripod but I chose it not for stability but rather for ease of use. I exchanged the compactness of a couple inches' worth folded length for having 33% fewer leg locks to undo when extending the tripod. 3 vs 4 section stability did not affect my decision at all.

Norman



Nov 25, 2012 at 07:26 PM
 

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sjms
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p.1 #6 · Tripods, question I haven't seen answered


from a technical standpoint there are some differences between RRS and Gitzo that can and should be taken into account. and its only to your advantage to do so if just for an education. they are not in the realm of "favorites" kind of stuff either. just cold hard info for you to ponder.

I own 3 tripods in use
2 RRS and 1 Gitzo.

I use all the sections on my tripods on an as need basis. kinda pointless getting something and not using it. I don't consider any of my tripods lowest leg a compromise.

I don't consider induro an option when these two are involved.



Nov 25, 2012 at 10:09 PM
Charles Gallo
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p.1 #7 · Tripods, question I haven't seen answered


Yes, I know Induro is way below the other two, and I've played with the other two. I guess it is the older bias I have against 4 section pods - back when, there was a BIG jump in diameter to go to the 4th section


Nov 25, 2012 at 10:31 PM
peter_n
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p.1 #8 · Tripods, question I haven't seen answered


With modern twist locks there seems to be very little difference if any in rigidity between 3 and 4 section legs. A few years ago I dithered for several weeks in a store between a 3 and 4 section Gitzo and eventually got the 4 section.

Then a couple years ago I did the same thing with series-3 systematics but with much shorter dither time and again got the 4 section. To be honest I couldn't tell the difference. A while back a guy over on Nikonians tested a 4 against a 3 and found the 4 was actually better.

Like most I go for the smaller folded size of the 4 section as I sometimes take my main tripod on a plane for trips.




Nov 27, 2012 at 03:52 PM
Strobo
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p.1 #9 · Tripods, question I haven't seen answered


peter_n wrote:
With modern twist locks there seems to be very little difference if any in rigidity between 3 and 4 section legs. A few years ago I dithered for several weeks in a store between a 3 and 4 section Gitzo and eventually got the 4 section.




Like you say 3 or 4 section doesn't make much difference in rigidity these days. The 3 section will be slightly faster to set up and take down, and I've always chosen a 3 section just for that reason.



Nov 29, 2012 at 07:43 AM





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