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PostPosted: Sat Aug 18, 2012 3:48 pm 
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Joined: Wed Sep 29, 2010 10:22 am
Posts: 12
Location: Walsall, UK
Hello all,

I am currently looking at two of the Giottos VGRN Vitruvian models (http://www.giottos-tripods.co.uk/index. ... ae6ded2454). The VGRN9265+5501-652 and VGRN9255+5400-652.

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For ease of reference I am posting some stats here:

VGRN9255+5400-652
SRP £200 inc vat
Material
Aluminium
Folded Height 40cm
Minimum Height 27cm
Maximum Height without Centre Column 142cm
Maximum Height with Centre Column 165cm
Weight 1.55kg
Maximum Weight Capacity 6kg
Number of Leg Sections 5

VGRN9265+5501-652
SRP £260 inc vat
Material Aluminium
Folded Height 40.3cm
Minimum Height 28.6cm
Maximum Height without Centre Column 147cm
Maximum Height with Centre Column 171cm
Weight 2.03kg
Maximum Weight Capacity 9kg
Number of Leg Sections 5

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Since I am only going to hold a d7000 along with a mid sized lens, weight capacity on both is fine. In most aspects they are identical. I am not opting for carbon fibre because the price difference is huge but weight isn't (about 0.3kg).

On the heads, the VGRN9265+5501-652 has a friction control dial where as the VGRN9255+5400-652 doesn't, but the weight difference is 1.5kg to 2kg.

This will be my first tripod and will be used for landscapes mostly.

My question...is a friction control dial worth 0.5kg?

Also both are priced at £170. I am open to other suggestions but for weight, size when collapsed these seem the best option.

Thanks

Dave.


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PostPosted: Sat Aug 18, 2012 8:45 pm 
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Joined: Mon Sep 13, 2010 7:01 pm
Posts: 1228
Location: NW England
Hi Dave.
I bought a Giotto MTL9361B Pro Tripod & Giottos MH1300-652 Series II Ball Head, from different suppliers (Jessops & WEX) but totalling approx £230)

Check that the tripod is tall enough for your needs, prerferably without fully extending the centre column for stability, especially if you might be shooting directly upwards (night sky etc) Also decide if you want a tilting centre column, which can be useful for macro shots.

It also might be better buying a ball-head that is rated higher than you think you need, they certainly give you more confidence & you might actually need the higher rating if you get heavier gear in the future. I personally like the `friction` control.

It's a bit of a juggling decision I guess.....your needs at present, cost, weight, size etc. but better if poss to buy correctly 1st time, which saves money in the long run.

Good luck deciding & let us know what you decide. :wink:

P.S.
Don't forget to factor in the extra weight of hanging a bag from under the tripod, or placing weight on top of your set up if needed, in a breeze etc.
PPS. Buy an extra quick release plate too. (ready for your next, long lens? purchase :wink: )

_________________
Image btw,He who dies with the most toys, WINS!
Nikon D800E & D700 bodies + Nikon 200-400mm F4 VR1, 50mm F1.4G, 16-35mm f/4G VR, 105 F2.8 VR macro, 70-300mm lenses. A couple of filters, Giotto tripod & ballhead. Lowepro Slingshot 302 AW
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 19, 2012 8:11 am 
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Joined: Wed Sep 29, 2010 10:22 am
Posts: 12
Location: Walsall, UK
Thanks for your reply :).

I am 5ft 9 (175cm) so both of these seem about the right height fully extended without centre column. Compared to other tripods they seem quite tall, especially considering how small they shrink down to.

For £170 I think both of these are really good value for money, especially considering the the combined weight of the tripod and head is only 2kg. This seems comparable to most other carbon fibre combinations on the market.

These come as bundles with tripod, ball head and bag. I think this is so it can be reduced down to a very small size because the legs fold 180 degrees. I have checked with Giotto and they said that the tripod can take any Giotto head but it would be unlikely it could fold back on itself.

I didn't really think about hanging weight so maybe better to opt for the larger of the two.

Both these models also have a really nice feature where one of the legs can be converted into a monopod. This will be ideal as a starting point for when I inevitably buy a long lens. I currently have a 35mm 1.8 and 17-105mm.

I am not fussed about Macro at the moment but I guess I could always purchase a table top tripod or something in the future if I wanted to pursue that. Afterall, never say never!

To a point I am not concerned about cost. I want to buy something which will last and is able to grow with me as I improve and build up my kit. I was looking at the Manfrotto 190CXPRO4. One nice thing about that tripod is the resale value seems to be very high. There aren't many of the Giotto VGRN's around to gage how well they would resell if I ever wanted to upgrade or change. On the other hand the 190CXPRO4 is much smaller in height, less load capacity, costs more and once you've added a head it is comparable in weight.

Thanks

Dave.


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