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PostPosted: Tue Jul 14, 2009 3:50 pm 
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After using a Manfrotto monopod (680B) for not even a year, it's lock system and weight have started to concern me. I find myself leaving the thing at home because it's too much of a nuisance to lug around all day.

So I started looking for an alternative. I'm a pretty tall lad, so height was a priority. And since the lock system of my current Manfrotto is not something I'd buy again, I thought of Gitzo. They build lightweight support by using carbon fibre and I've heard great things about their G-lock system. Browsing through the models, I decided the GM3551 would be the monopod for me.

So... I checked it's price. Oh my! €215,- for one single leg! I knew they were expensive, but that much?

So, my question is: Does Gitzo really make the difference. Apart from it's carbon fibre and G-lock system, what else would give it such a pricetag?

Thanks in advance for your replies.

- Bjorn -

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 14, 2009 10:20 pm 
When i first read all the specs i was thinking "Sweet this is the monopod for me"... but when saw that $300 price tag, maybe its not for me. I'm still searching. i can't afford one for a while though.


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PostPosted: Wed Jul 15, 2009 8:31 am 
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The price tag is what concerns me as well. Is it really worth that much money?

Whatever monopod you decide to get, make sure the locking system is quick and easy to operate!

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PostPosted: Wed Jul 15, 2009 9:20 am 
You're buying a MONO pod, how heavy can it be? I mean think of all the weight you're saving by not carrying the whole tripod. I personally don't think you NEED a carbon fibre monopod.


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PostPosted: Wed Jul 15, 2009 9:53 am 
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True, Greg. I'll have a look at the other monopods with G-lock system! :wink: Might be a whole lot cheaper...

- Bjorn -

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PostPosted: Wed Jul 15, 2009 10:06 am 
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Hi Bjorn,

My own choice of a Gitzo tripod was driven by dimensions and weight and I couldn't find a suitable alternative. That's said, I'm still very pleased with my choice.

Yes, Gitzos are expensive but compare with the Induro MXC45 which is about one third cheaper. The MXC45 is slightly shorter and has a significantly lower maximum load and is heavier as well, but if you don't expect to lean too heavily on it while out hiking maybe it will suffice. Perhaps the durability and build quality aren't quite the same but unless you are lucky enough to live close to a tripod mega-store it's very difficult to find out as reviews are so thin on the ground. My gut feeling, based on the specification comparison between the Gitzo and the Induro, is that the Gitzo may well be worth the cash if you need its extra capabilities but then, as a Gitzo owner, I'm biased. ;)

Bob.

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PostPosted: Wed Jul 15, 2009 10:22 am 
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Thanks Bob for the reply. I knew you have a Gitzo tripod, so I was hoping for you to come across the thread! :wink:

I've had a look at the Induro tripod, but I'd have to import that from another country to get it (it's not available in Holland, not in any of the stores I know at least). So shipping costs would make it expensive anyway. And I've kind of fallen for the Gitzo brand.

I did take Greg's advice though, and found another Gitzo monopod that would suit me, the GM3350XL. It's pretty similar, here's the specs (blue = GM3551 / red = GM3350XL):
Max. height: 192cm / 186cm
Min. height: 54cm / 52.5cm
Sections: 5 (both)
Weight: 0.62kg / 0.86kg

The price difference is not too big, €149,- for the GM3350XL and €215,- for the GM3551.

I'll think about which one to get, and I'll definitely go to the local photography-superstore to try some Gitzo stuff!

- Bjorn -

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PostPosted: Wed Jul 15, 2009 2:33 pm 
Oooh I like.... 200 USD still more that i wanted to spend though. but it sounds like this may be the worth it as it would last longer than a different brand. but still, i don't even know if i like monopods yet. i need to try one out before i make this kind of investment.


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PostPosted: Wed Jul 15, 2009 2:36 pm 
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You'll love a monopod. I use mine very often (which is why I'm considering buying such an expensive one), and hardly ever use a tripod. Then again, I don't do much landscape or night-time photography. I often take the monopod along when I shoot indoor events at, say, school.

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PostPosted: Wed Jul 15, 2009 8:01 pm 
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Visit the Kamera-Express store Bjorn, that's where I tested the monopods, and ultimately bought the velbon one. Again, it's carbon, has a twist-lock system (not likely to loosen over time), weighs .7 KG and is 170 cm high for the pro 7 version. I'm 1,92 cm, and I find myself using less than 170 CM when standing straight up with my 70-200 collar-mounted.
Price: 105 euros. ;)

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PostPosted: Wed Jul 15, 2009 8:46 pm 
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Kamera Express is one of my favourite stores, not too far away and the have lots of stuff. I'll definitely go there to do some testing!

- Bjorn -

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 16, 2009 11:49 pm 
I have been looking at mono pods for a while now and i think i'm going to buy a gitzo, most likely this one:

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/553781-REG/Gitzo_GM2541_GM2541_6X_Carbon_Fiber.html

all the same features as the original one you looked at only it holds 26.4 pounds instead of 39.6

if i needed support for more than 26.4 pounds i would use a tripod. :lol:

Its hard to buy expensive stuff online when you've haven't seen it in person!

Did you have a chance to check some monopods out in person Bjorn?


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 17, 2009 9:53 am 
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Tomis wrote:
all the same features as the original one you looked at only it holds 26.4 pounds instead of 39.6
...
Did you have a chance to check some monopods out in person Bjorn?

Well, the max. weight differs, and the length. That monopod only goes up to 160cm, whereas the one I was originally looking at, goes up to 192cm...

I haven't had a chance yet to look at the monopods. I will though, sometime soon.

- Bjorn -

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 17, 2009 10:13 pm 
oh i see. I wish we used the metric system in the US. 160cm means nothing to me (i feel so arrogant!) i have to look that up on google... ah 5 feet 3 inches! i'm almost 6' (180 cm). Do you think that 5'3" (160cm) is tall enough for me to stand up and look through with my 70-200mm collar mounted (collar to view finder is 11cm)? and i'll probably have a ballhead/quick release on there as well so that adds another 2.4" (6cm). so my view finder will be approximately 176mm high. My eye level is 166cm so i think i can do just fine with the shorter one. i wouldn't even need a ballhead/quick release! or wait can you use a monopod for sports photography without a ball head?


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 17, 2009 10:51 pm 
Hang on a minute everyone, i thought that the purpose of IS/VR/OS, was that you didn't need to take a tripod or monopod with you :!: So why do you need a monopod so much Tomis and Bjorn??


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