This is what I am saving for: A Slik Professional/4/DX700 and one of the big ballheads.
Reason? Slik is half the price of Manfrotto and just as good. My father has a heavy Slik and it's wonderfull - I fell in love with it instantly.
Most of the discussions I have read either revolves around Manfrotto and Arca Swiss heads or they quickly diverge from the original subject into one-manfrotto-contra-the-other.
I would like to hear from some users of Slik professional tripods. I would like you to declare your love openly. Don't let the Arca/Gitzo/Manfrotto mafia keep you quiet
Thomas Heissel Dall,
astronomer and photographer
#1. "RE: Slik Pro*** and ballhead" | In response to Reply # 0b18c96specr Basic MemberTue 12-Sep-00 06:41 PM
I have a Slik Pro 700DX tripod and find it well constructed and lightweight for it's type. I am still using the pan head that came with it and it seems to be fine for the type of equipment I own and the type of shooting I do.
I find the tripod a bit heavy for hiking with all my other equipment, but that's about the only real complaint I have. I like the quick release mechanisms for the legs and the tripod is sturdy - I have no problems with my F100/MB15 and 80-200 f2.8 combination.
I compared it to a number of Manfrottos and I believe that the Slik in the best in it's price range. I realize that Slik's lower lines may not be the best quality, but the Pro line appears built to last.
BTW, I paid $230 CDN for the tripod.
#2. "RE: Slik Pro*** and ballhead" | In response to Reply # 1Tue 12-Sep-00 08:53 PM
thanks for your reassuring comments! I have received a good offer on a 700DX with the standard panhead, and I think I am going to take it!
(mail order in Spain - that's a pain)
Thomas - a Dane in Spain
#3. "RE: Slik Pro*** and ballhead" | In response to Reply # 2avm247 Charter MemberWed 15-Nov-00 08:23 PM
LAST EDITED ON Nov-16-00 AT 04:18 PM (GMT)
just wondering, did you end up picking up the 700dx? any comments or thoughts? are you still using the standard panhead or did you also jump on the Arca-Swiss bandwagon. (I've been tempted but my 3-way head still works, albeit not as fast.)
How are things in Spain?
I enjoyed the photos of that you recently posted of your daughter(?) and the "angels".
#4. "RE: Slik Pro*** and ballhead" | In response to Reply # 3BJNicholls Charter MemberThu 16-Nov-00 12:13 AM
I just wanted to jump in and give my negative experience with the Arca-style system. Yes, the system is universal. Yes, the aftermarket plates prevent twisting and the system is strong once your gear is safely clamped down.
It's not always easy to tell when your camera plate is in the dovetail. The only way to be sure is visually confirm position before you tighten the clamp. I learned the consequences with my recent disaster with my new 24-85 Nikkor. The precision of the machining and anodizing actually works against you by making the parts butter-smooth (and slick). You get very little tactile feedback on proper positioning.
Frankly, despite all the hype for Arca plates, I find the Manfrotto quick release to be superior. It audibly and visibly click into place and has a security interlock. The negative is the larger plate size and (except for one plate model) the lack of anti-twist.
I don't mean to avert the discussion from the higher line Slik tripods. I've read good things about them. I just wanted to put in my two cents on the downside of joining the expensive cults. I'm thinking of selling my Arca-style stuff and perhaps try the Northstar system that has been discussed here.
#5. "RE: Slik Pro*** and ballhead" | In response to Reply # 4avm247 Charter MemberThu 16-Nov-00 01:33 PM
Thanks for the information on the A-S idiosyncrasy. That's one that I have not heard/read about. I would assume, then, that this also applies to the "knockoffs," too.
From what I've heard, the A-S ball head is extremely smooth operating, while the Bogen/Manfrotto leaves a lot to be desired.
#6. "RE: Slik Pro*** and ballhead" | In response to Reply # 5BJNicholls Charter MemberFri 17-Nov-00 06:40 PM
Actually, I'm using knockoffs. My F100 has a Kirk Precision plate and the ball head I'm using is made by Markins (Korea). I also have an Arca-style clamp from Kirk that I can mount to my other heads. The action of the Markins ball head is excellent, my real complaint is with the Arca dovetail quick release design.
Most folks who get into the Cult of the B1 buy Really Right Stuff or Kirk plates, not Arca plates which aren't custom fitted to specific equipment. All these products are precision machined and have a similar slippery smoothness. Aesthetically, such gear is a joy, but textured surface might actually work better.
The Arca B1 has three big drawbacks that kept me from joining the one true cult. It's very expensive, you have to wait forever to buy one, and the ball mechanism can jam if you don't leave the friction lock loose when you're transporting it. When I read the techique for freeing up a jammed B1, I decided to go with a similar, less expensive, jam free alternative.
#7. "RE: Slik Pro*** and ballhead" | In response to Reply # 3Mon 21-May-01 11:01 AM
thanks for the nice comments about my photos I have not been posting much recently: been busy with my thesis, moving etc. Will try to start posting again as I work through the pile of photos waiting to be sorted...
I am now back in Denmark at least for some months, but I eventually got the DX700 with the standard 4way pan head. I eneded up ordering it from Adorama in the USA... as I said before: mail order in Spain is a pain! But that's a story for another forum.
I am overly satisfied with it! It is so easy to use, yet sturdy and stable. I have no trouble with my long glass + F4. And the easy adjustment of the legs + the leg angle adjustment is invaluable when setting up on uneven (rock) terrain.
My only pre-concern was that I thought I needed a ball-head, but the 4way head works fine for me so far. I have not been doing long hikes with it yet, so the weight has not been bothering me. I will put it to the test some day -- when I get back into mountainous terrain
Thomas - a Dane no longer in Spain