tripod and light kit advice/opinions

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    • #43445

      i am looking into purchasing a good tripod and inexpensive light kit. i have been browsing online and found a few peices of equiptment i like and that seem appropriate for my needs. since i have never had the opportunity to use the exact items i am considering purchasing it would be greatly appreciated if someone can give me some advice or opinions on the items i am looking into.

      first i will start with the tripod. i am looking at the bogen 745b legs and 501 head. i like this set up because it has a leveling head and you can get it to sit very close to the ground. does anyone have experience with this tripod? do you like dislike it? is there anything else available that is compareable but at a lower price?

      the light kit i found is made by impact and is a three light kit totaling 1250 watts. it comes with two 12" reflectors one 5" reflector, bulbs, case, umbellas, and light stands. for the price it seems to me like a good kit, but i have never used lights like this. the only kits i have used are some lowell kits i take out from my school and they are much different from this kit in construction. i think the kit i am looking at is called a photoflood kit. has anyone used these types of lights, and how well do they work? i would assume that you would not have as much controll over the light because they do not have any sort of barn doors. also do you have to reflect these lights off of a wall or the umbrellas included in the kit or can you point them directly at the subject?

      any other input or things to consider would be greatly appreciated. following are the links to the two pieces of equiptment i am considering.


      light kit

      thanks in advance for any help, it is greatly appreciated.

    • #182382

      The head worries me – I actually have two of them – one branded manfrotto and the other Vinten badged. They are ‘ok’ but the construction is quite basic. The drag, for example, just compresses the two mating surfaces, and works, but does result in a slightly jerky start and stop. One of my heads was a little sloppy, and I overtightened the adjuster and snapped the internal threaded rod. The head also has no counterbalance, meaning heavy cameras have a tendency to fall forward or backwards. The 503 head has a spring to help with this problem.

      For the same sort of money you can get a Libec which I also have. This is a little better in the head department, and the legs are pretty resistant to wind up.

      Lighting wise, most video users don’t use umbrellas that much – a red head or dedolight kit is smaller, lighter and less prone to damage. If the umbrellas are cheap enough, then worth it – as long as one can be used as a key. My barn doors spend most of their time just holding diffuser.

    • #182383

      thank you both for your input.

      from what was said and after reviewing the specs on the 503 head it seems like it will be worth the extra money to go that route insead of the 501. also considering that this peice of equiptment will last a long time it seems appropriate to spend the extra money and get something i will be satisfied with, and not wanting to upgrade shortly down the road. what about the legs i mentioned, 745b, are thoes good or is there another set that would be better?

      paulears, can you clarify what the other light kits you are talking about, i am not familiar with the terms or kits you mentioned.

      the kit i was looking at only costs $200 so i was thinking for the money it may be decent, but i could be wrong. like i said the lights i have expierience using are way out of my price range so i am pretty clueless as to what is available for someone on a lower budget. any other opinions on this light kit or suggestions would be very helpful.

    • #182385

      Check this one out….

    • #182384

      If the head is a 503 – good, if a 501 not so good.

    • #182386

      which set of legs would be better and why, 351 or 745?

    • #182387

      thanks for the advice compsolver.

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