Davis & Sanford Pro Vista Video Tripod w/ FM18 Fluid Hea

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    • #43448

      Any opinions on this product? It’s priced right ($200 @ B&H) and certainly has the features I desire, just wondering if anyone has any experience with this tripod?

    • #182390

      I’ve purchased/used one of these before. I will say for $200 its pretty good. It can’t handle much of a beating though, we had one of the "spreaders" snap on us due to a baggage handler mishap. The great thing is, we sent it back and the company TOTALLY stood behind the thing and shipped us an entire new one. Very impressive. Its much better than the cheapies that you see on ebay "Professional, Heavy Duty, etc" tripods. It offers a claw ball and decent height and light weight. The head is ‘fine’ not ‘great’ and like the poster before said, its not a ‘pro’ tripod just a very good cheap tripod. If you’re a student or a serious amateur. Buy this OR consider the the Libec TH650. I bought one of these as a student 7 years ago and have BASHED the bejeezers out of it and its still working great. Lightweight but heavy duty with a claw ball. Head is ‘fine’ not great. But I’ve made thousands and thousands off this little $140 tripod.

      Good luck in your search. I’ve found that the next best step up is the Bogen 3192 with 316 head (allows for full size video cam and teleprompter) and moves pretty good. Its around $1200.

    • #182391

      I just took a look at the description of that tripod on the B&H website. Has a lot of features you’d expect on a much more expensive model (crutch-style legs, mid-leg spreaders, bubble level, good max height). For that low price, they might have cut back on something (durability? smooth panning?). But still, it sounds like the best bet if you’re only going to spend $200 (and you won’t be rough-handling it).

      You should look at the "Tips and Techniques" sections of episodes 27 and 28 of Videomaker presents (on the Videomaker website here). They give excellent advice on tripod selection.

      My 3 cents worth, πŸ™‚
      Ken Hull

      P.S. — If you could spend a little more…. the Bogen / Manfrotto 3046 Tripod Legs for $229.95, and the Bogen / Manfrotto 3433 (501) Pro Video Head for $149.95 would be a most excellent combination! (Or the Bogen / Manfrotto 501HDV Fluid Video Head for $173.95 adds a counterbalance spring. Useful if people are taking turns operating the camera.) Ahhhh….decisions, decisions! πŸ˜•

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