How to justify the price difference?

Started Jan 21, 2013 | Discussions thread
akustykmagmanetpl Contributing Member • Posts: 791
Re: How to justify the price difference?

as a hobbyst - no, I don't think it is reasonable to pay that much money on a tripod, unless you plan to use it day in and day out for 10 years.

I have 5 year old Velbon CF 630 legs which work great despite quite heavy usage in terrain (on average I think 3-4 hours a week being constantly extended, collapsed, repositioned, carried, etc.). I don't think anything will happen to it for another 5 years. the price was 210 EUR back then when Carbon legs were still a bit of novelty, while comparable models of Gitzo were around twice this price.

as for ballheads... I've never used Gitzo or anything considered uber-great: Markins, RRS,... I've had 2 Manfrotto ballheads which were utter garbage (222 and 486, both brutal in terms of build quality, mechanics and sturdiness). then Benro B1 which was quite good but after two years didn't work flawlessly any more (perhaps 5D + 300/4 was a little to much for this one). now, since about half year, I have Sirui K-30x. lovely piece of engineering working uber-smooth and nice. it didn't cost fortune (130 EUR, AFAIR) but half year is not enough to say anything about durability. I hope it lasts for some 4-5 years then it will be money well spend. if it's more - I'll be all smiles.

I'm myself not interrested in Gitzo - I have Arca-compatible accessories and don't want any proper formats which are incompatible with anything else. but when it comes to ballheads and RRS/Markins/Arca - their prices and support are not that great in Europe so their purchase seems much less justifiable than in US, I guess. Even with their great manufacturing standards, there's still chance something goes wrong with RRS/Markins/Arca and it's not cool if you have to wait long for replace unit being shipped from US... with Benro/Sirui there's abundance of options in the shops which makes it easier to service or even replace the ballhead when necessary. at the end of the day 1 fine Markins ball head cost about the same as 2-3 similar* ballheads from Sirui or Benro. I myself went with Sirui, in worst case I can just replace it and it's still cheaper than similar Markins in Europe...

* - similar in term of functionality. opinions about mechanical quality and durability may vary, I've never had Markins at all (not to mention for extended period of time nor being able to sample multiple pieces) so can't say it by myself.

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