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Archive 2013 · Gitzo 2012 systematic tripods vs pre 2012 systematic trip...
  
 
bob_wfmc
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · Gitzo 2012 systematic tripods vs pre 2012 systematic tripods?


Hi all,

I was hoping to solicit some advice. I am looking to add a 5XXX series systematic tripod to my gear and wondered if the improvements brought forth in the 20012 update (safety catch on the plate, new plate shape, integrated feet) were worthwhile upgrades over the pre 2012 line? More importantly, Gitzo upgraded the weight limits of the systematics with the 2012 revision - the 5XX2 series is now rated for 80-ish lbs up from 50-ish. Have there been meaningful changes to the design to increase the load capacity or is this marketing? Specifically, I'm looking at the 553X or 554X (X = 1 or 2) as an additional support for an 800mm lens. FYI, I currently have a 3341XLS and a 1541T - my spouse wants to use the 3341 with her shorter FL teles.

Thanks!



Feb 15, 2013 at 07:02 PM
peter_n
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · Gitzo 2012 systematic tripods vs pre 2012 systematic tripods?


bob_wfmc wrote:
Have there been meaningful changes to the design to increase the load capacity or is this marketing?


IMO it's marketing with in some cases poorer specs. I use a 3451LS that has a load capacity of 40 lbs. I don't have a camera that weighs 40 lbs. Do you have a camera that weighs 80lbs?

In my case the 3541LS was replaced by the 3542LS which has a longer folded length, is 13% heavier, and is much more expensive. In other words a retrograde design, and I'm so glad I bought a systematic when I did. Here's the Gitzo announcement web page - make of it what you will... "New construction and bonding techniques have almost doubled maximum payloads by distributing weight more efficiently to the 6X carbon fibre legs". It seems that perhaps you're paying for styling and better glue.

Their prices are now up in the RRS stratosphere and you might want to look at the RRS offerings as an alternative. The TVC-33 and TVC-34L are said to be in the Gitzo 5-series range WRT performance according to users.





Feb 15, 2013 at 09:03 PM
Lars Johnsson
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · Gitzo 2012 systematic tripods vs pre 2012 systematic tripods?


peter_n wrote:
IMO it's marketing with in some cases poorer specs. I use a 3451LS that has a load capacity of 40 lbs. I don't have a camera that weighs 40 lbs. Do you have a camera that weighs 80lbs?

In my case the 3541LS was replaced by the 3542LS which has a longer folded length, is 13% heavier, and is much more expensive. In other words a retrograde design, and I'm so glad I bought a systematic when I did. Here's the Gitzo announcement web page - make of it what you will... "New construction and bonding techniques have almost doubled
...Show more

It's not only about load capacity. Even Gitzo themself say on their website and in their catalogs that the series 3 tripod 3541LS works good with lenses up to 500mm. And he like to use it with an 800mm lens. I own both the Systematic 3541LS and the 5541LS. And their is a rather large difference in stability between the series 3 and series 5 with that long lens.



Feb 16, 2013 at 03:35 AM
Lars Johnsson
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · Gitzo 2012 systematic tripods vs pre 2012 systematic tripods?


As I wrote before I have both the 3541LS and 5541LS. I have played a bit with many of the latest Gitzo Systematic tripods in the shops and on a couple of Photo Fairs. The top plate have a new design and is probably a little bit better. But also larger. It's a big top plate. And they have both spikes and rubber feets.
But I belive the difference is not so big. And the stability will be fantastic even if you buy the older 5541LS.
How much different is the price between the new and old for you?



Feb 16, 2013 at 03:43 AM
sjms
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · Gitzo 2012 systematic tripods vs pre 2012 systematic tripods?


I think you will find though that in fairly short order the systematic properties of the older models will fade rather rapidly since there is the built in incompatibility of the "new and improved" ones . in short the older systematic components will be short on availability and tall on price if you want them and if you can get them.

as to the spiked feet, well, they were simple add-ons on the previous versions and all the did was throw a coating on them throw them in on the package and roll it up with the price increase. I use the Gitzo spikes and feet on my RRS as the RRS ones are just too aggressive for my current usage/needs.

as to the "improved" spider design. it gave them the opportunity fix some basic design issues and to make other makers components incompatible on one shot. gotta keep the bloodline pure.



Feb 16, 2013 at 02:54 PM
EB-1
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · Gitzo 2012 systematic tripods vs pre 2012 systematic tripods?


sjms wrote:
as to the "improved" spider design. it gave them the opportunity fix some basic design issues and to make other makers components incompatible on one shot. gotta keep the bloodline pure.


I think improving the tripod was the main goal. They don't gain much by making their own accessories obsolete.

EBH



Feb 16, 2013 at 03:39 PM
sjms
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · Gitzo 2012 systematic tripods vs pre 2012 systematic tripods?


improvement yes along with sort of a backhanded fix.

yes they do: additional sales. those who sell off their old ones will now include the additional components that will not fit the new one. then of course you need to replace them on the new version. I'll look into it a bit more but I'll guess that the notch and clip are the only real change. no other dimensional differences for the systematic system. just enough. to make a difference (and they did it before).

apple: design new plug and give it a fancy name and in its case a crappier build. charge for adapters.



Feb 16, 2013 at 04:37 PM
peter_n
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · Gitzo 2012 systematic tripods vs pre 2012 systematic tripods?


sjms wrote:
I think you will find though that in fairly short order the systematic properties of the older models will fade rather rapidly since there is the built in incompatibility of the "new and improved" ones . in short the older systematic components will be short on availability and tall on price if you want them and if you can get them.


This was my thinking too and as I recall it's true for the leveling base, but the RRS leveling base fits on the older systematics anyway. At the end of last year I bought all the components I thought I might need for my 3-series and ordered all the parts from the "old" parts list. To my surprise the delivered center column was the part for the new tripods, it was longer by 1 inch and actually less expensive! And unaccountably it was shipped directly from Manfrotto Distribution, not the retailer. So some "new" systematic components may well fit the "old" systematics.






Feb 16, 2013 at 05:08 PM
 

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sjms
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · Gitzo 2012 systematic tripods vs pre 2012 systematic tripods?


excellent news for the Gitzo user of older gear. but does it go the other way?


Feb 16, 2013 at 05:49 PM
EB-1
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p.1 #10 · p.1 #10 · Gitzo 2012 systematic tripods vs pre 2012 systematic tripods?


Whatever it is, I'm not too thrilled with larger, heavier, and more expensive.

EBH



Feb 17, 2013 at 02:43 AM
peter_n
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p.1 #11 · p.1 #11 · Gitzo 2012 systematic tripods vs pre 2012 systematic tripods?


sjms wrote:
excellent news for the Gitzo user of older gear. but does it go the other way?


No idea.





Feb 17, 2013 at 04:34 PM
bob_wfmc
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p.1 #12 · p.1 #12 · Gitzo 2012 systematic tripods vs pre 2012 systematic tripods?


Thanks for the responses everyone. Based upon what I have read, the newer Gitzo models are probably not worth the extra $$$. The only feature of interest to me is the safety plate. That said, the increased pricing of the new 2012 models appears to have caused some appreciation in the used market of the older tripods models. Using a recent auction as an example - people on flea bay are willing to pay $900 for a 5540LS


Feb 27, 2013 at 05:27 PM
peter_n
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p.1 #13 · p.1 #13 · Gitzo 2012 systematic tripods vs pre 2012 systematic tripods?


Bob WRT the safety plate I have one for my 3541LS but it's a systematic so you can't use the plate all the time and I'm using my leveling base a lot. What I did to relieve my anxieties was buy a Torx head bit on eBay that fits my 3/8" socket wrench. Using the head bit with a wrench handle allows you to seriously tighten that base screw to a level that's impossible with the little key that comes with the tripod. I also use the head bit to tighten the leg joints.

There's probably a used price differential in Gitzo systematics that parallels the new prices, at least here in the US. The most popular new systematics have been the 3-series and they seem to get bigger discounts than the 5-series and get them more frequently. I bought my 3-series a couple years ago for $540. There's just a lot more 3-series tripods out there, a guy on another forum got a 3541LS + Markins Q10 on an eBay auction for $700 last week, the thing is hardly used. Like new.

eBay prices can be a bit off the wall sometimes. If you get two bidders who are determined the sale price can be wacko. You should put a WTB listing here in Buy & Sell, on photo.net and forums that cater to landscape photogs and suchlike. You might get a bite but you probably need to be patient. A Gitzo 5541LS with safety plate sold in the Buy & Sell here on FM a couple weeks ago for $785.




Feb 27, 2013 at 07:53 PM
bob_wfmc
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p.1 #14 · p.1 #14 · Gitzo 2012 systematic tripods vs pre 2012 systematic tripods?


Peter -

Thanks for the info. I just found a great deal on a 5541 package with many extras.



Mar 06, 2013 at 11:54 PM
peter_n
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p.1 #15 · p.1 #15 · Gitzo 2012 systematic tripods vs pre 2012 systematic tripods?


Great! Very happy for you Bob!




Mar 07, 2013 at 09:39 PM





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