My review of Giottos MT9180 tripod and MH1001 ball head.

Started Feb 16, 2006 | Discussions
cleanmaxx brian Senior Member • Posts: 1,086
My review of Giottos MT9180 tripod and MH1001 ball head.

Hi all,

Just wanted to give an update. I got the Giottos MT9180 Tripod ($138.00) and the Giottos MH1001 ball head($68.88). Over all impression...this is money very well spent! This is the most stable, strongest, most feature packed tripod I have ever seen for the money...period! It is a little on the heavy side (5.7 lbs for the tripod with aluminium legs and available height of 71 inches) but it allows for a larger camera weight (26lbs!). The tripod has quality written all over it. It comes with a nice sholder strap as well as a bag that is plenty big enough to carry the head attached. The ballhead also feels like a very well made unit. The only thing I wished it came with is the quick release. It is a $34.95 option that I will pick up tomorrow.

Click this link for a picture of the ball head:
http://www.hpmarketingcorp.com/images/Giottos/MH%201001

Highly recomended!!!
--

Brian - KM 5D!!! Canon s10-sold and still working! Canon S400-a great point and shoot!
My picture page:
http://www.pbase.com/cleanmaxx_brian/

My 91 Nissan Sentra SE-R
http://www.jbl.com/car/featured/installs/sentra.asp

Ben Nason Regular Member • Posts: 100
Thanks for the review!

Right now I'm using an old all metal Davidson StarD pan-head tripod. Its very basic, heavy and older than I am, so I am looking for a good tripod to replace it.
--

http://homepage.mac.com/alphamatrix/

OP cleanmaxx brian Senior Member • Posts: 1,086
Re: Thanks for the review!

I think you would be very happy with this one!
--

Brian - KM 5D!!! Canon s10-sold and still working! Canon S400-a great point and shoot!
My picture page:
http://www.pbase.com/cleanmaxx_brian/

My 91 Nissan Sentra SE-R
http://www.jbl.com/car/featured/installs/sentra.asp

mcilenti Contributing Member • Posts: 834
Re: Heck of a salesman...

I'm going to BH photo to take a look. Sounds good to me.

Thanks
Mike

mcilenti Contributing Member • Posts: 834
Re: Heck of a salesman...

$154.00 and $89.00 at BH photo. Where did you get it for $138.00?

Mike

OP cleanmaxx brian Senior Member • Posts: 1,086
Re: Heck of a salesman...

http://www.einsteinproducts.com/servlet/StoreFront

They have a pretty big e-bay store. They have starting bids and buy it nows...I placed my bid at their starting price and that is what I won it at. Looks like a lot of people are doing this too... Even shipping was fair! They only charged $1 for adding the ball head to the tripod.

Here is what tripods and heads they are selling now:

http://photography.search.ebay.com/_Tripods-Monopods_W0QQcatrefZC12QQfrppZ25QQfsooZ1QQfsopZ1QQsacatZ30090QQsassZeinsteinproducts

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Brian - KM 5D!!! Canon s10-sold and still working! Canon S400-a great point and shoot!
My picture page:
http://www.pbase.com/cleanmaxx_brian/

My 91 Nissan Sentra SE-R
http://www.jbl.com/car/featured/installs/sentra.asp

5D DjD Contributing Member • Posts: 653
Thanks for the heads up... (NT)
-- hide signature --

...Dennis

mcilenti Contributing Member • Posts: 834
Re: Thanks for the heads up... (NT)

Ditto on the heads up

Ben Nason Regular Member • Posts: 100
Re: My review of Giottos MT9180 tripod and MH1001 ball head.

I wonder if you could post some pics of the the built-in three-way head and how it operates as I am not sure I really need a ball head at the moment. From looking at the pictures I take it in order to do the macro boom thing you would need an additional head?

Also could you comment on your impressions of the durability of the screw system on the telescoping legs?
--

http://homepage.mac.com/alphamatrix/

cheshirecat Contributing Member • Posts: 920
Re: My review of Giottos MT9180 tripod and MH1001 ball head.

I teamed it with a manfrotto grip head 322rc2. Works well - pics in thread below

http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/read.asp?forum=1035&message=16987963
--
Peter
E1, A80
http://www.dawnandpeter.fotopic.net

OP cleanmaxx brian Senior Member • Posts: 1,086
Re: My review of Giottos MT9180 tripod and MH1001 ball head.

Hi Ben,

The shots I posted really show how it works... You could also check out http://www.giottos.com for more pictures.
These are pictures I found on the web...

As for the legs...also very sturdy, especially for a 4 leg!!! The twist grip for the legs also feels real good and solid. The grips are rubber so they are easy to twist.

Brian

Ben Nason wrote:

I wonder if you could post some pics of the the built-in three-way
head and how it operates as I am not sure I really need a ball head
at the moment. From looking at the pictures I take it in order to
do the macro boom thing you would need an additional head?
Also could you comment on your impressions of the durability of the
screw system on the telescoping legs?
--

http://homepage.mac.com/alphamatrix/

-- hide signature --

Brian - KM 5D!!! Canon s10-sold and still working! Canon S400-a great point and shoot!
My picture page:
http://www.pbase.com/cleanmaxx_brian/

My 91 Nissan Sentra SE-R
http://www.jbl.com/car/featured/installs/sentra.asp

brobar Contributing Member • Posts: 506
My sentiments exactly...

I received my Giottos MT 9170 tripod and MH 5001 head this week and was going to do a review but what can I say that hasn't already been said? It is definately worth the money... I ended up getting the tripod and head for $186 shipped. It is a little on the heavy side but I like the sturdy feel. It is quick and easy to setup... easy to carry with the shoulder strap, and very VERY flexible (this setup can contort to about any angle imaginable).

I'm very pleased with mine!

-Brock
A few of my images: http://www.brockbarnes.com

OP cleanmaxx brian Senior Member • Posts: 1,086
Re: My sentiments exactly...

Good to hear Brock,

I am amazed that this tripod is not more popular?!?!?! Comparing it to the "other guys" it seemed like a steal!
Brian

brobar wrote:

I received my Giottos MT 9170 tripod and MH 5001 head this week and
was going to do a review but what can I say that hasn't already
been said? It is definately worth the money... I ended up getting
the tripod and head for $186 shipped. It is a little on the heavy
side but I like the sturdy feel. It is quick and easy to setup...
easy to carry with the shoulder strap, and very VERY flexible (this
setup can contort to about any angle imaginable).

I'm very pleased with mine!

-Brock
A few of my images: http://www.brockbarnes.com

-- hide signature --

Brian - KM 5D!!! Canon s10-sold and still working! Canon S400-a great point and shoot!
My picture page:
http://www.pbase.com/cleanmaxx_brian/

My 91 Nissan Sentra SE-R
http://www.jbl.com/car/featured/installs/sentra.asp

tme Regular Member • Posts: 161
Re: My sentiments exactly...

Well the only thing I dun like about it is the twist legs... flip clamps are easier to open and the tripod deploys faster... that's about but I like the ability to deploy horizontally the centre column very much...

OP cleanmaxx brian Senior Member • Posts: 1,086
Re: My sentiments exactly...

My old (cheapo) tripod had flip clamps...and they always hooked on stuff. But yes, they were a bit faster.

Brian

tme wrote:

Well the only thing I dun like about it is the twist legs... flip
clamps are easier to open and the tripod deploys faster... that's
about but I like the ability to deploy horizontally the centre
column very much...

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Brian - KM 5D!!! Canon s10-sold and still working! Canon S400-a great point and shoot!
My picture page:
http://www.pbase.com/cleanmaxx_brian/

My 91 Nissan Sentra SE-R
http://www.jbl.com/car/featured/installs/sentra.asp

denisg
denisg Senior Member • Posts: 1,329
1 Year On........

........and all is not roses. The shoulder pad that slides on the strap is a disgrace and the stitching comes apart very quickly. Mine fell off after only a couple of outings and others have reported similar. The legs that lock in any position don't unless you constantly address the bolts on the back of the locking tabs which you shouldn't have to do. MUCH more seriously though is the pathetic excuse for a head mounting bolt. That is a serious engineering spec error and completely mocks the supposed load weight. It is so weak that long lens work has to be looked at very carefully. If, like myself and a few others you like to mount camera and lens to the tripod and carry the whole thing ready to use over your shoulder, don't do it with this tripod. At least make sure if you do that you are still holding the camera strap. The bolt just shears and off falls the camera/lens assembly. Ouch!!. I stupidly recommended one to a friend and it nearly cost our friendship and his S3 Pro + 500 lens.

The problem is the bolt caters for both 3/8" and 1/4" heads and the wall thickness of the 3/8" section is too thin. They should have supplied two seperate bolts, solid steel.

Having said that, properly set up, there is very little you can't do with the thing and I have used mine in some strange places. It takes a bit of getting used to but even with the faults above I wouldn't part with mine. I just wish they had engineered it better even at a higher price.

Denis.
--
DenisG.
Pbase supporter
http://www.pbase.com/denisg

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OP cleanmaxx brian Senior Member • Posts: 1,086
Re: 1 Year On........

Hi Denis,

I just took mine apart and I see exactly what you mean. I do not (nor ever will) need the 1/4 inch threads so I am going to replace that whole assembly with a steel 3/8 bolt. Thank you VERY MUCH for the heads up!!! (I love this forum!)

As for the sholder pad/strap, no big deal for me as I won't be hiking much with it...but again I will kep an eye out.

I will also keep an eye out on the leg bolt but I do not think it will be a problem on mine...we will see

Thanks again!
Brian

denisg wrote:

........and all is not roses. The shoulder pad that slides on the
strap is a disgrace and the stitching comes apart very quickly.
Mine fell off after only a couple of outings and others have
reported similar. The legs that lock in any position don't unless
you constantly address the bolts on the back of the locking tabs
which you shouldn't have to do. MUCH more seriously though is the
pathetic excuse for a head mounting bolt. That is a serious
engineering spec error and completely mocks the supposed load
weight. It is so weak that long lens work has to be looked at very
carefully. If, like myself and a few others you like to mount
camera and lens to the tripod and carry the whole thing ready to
use over your shoulder, don't do it with this tripod. At least make
sure if you do that you are still holding the camera strap. The
bolt just shears and off falls the camera/lens assembly. Ouch!!. I
stupidly recommended one to a friend and it nearly cost our
friendship and his S3 Pro + 500 lens.

The problem is the bolt caters for both 3/8" and 1/4" heads and the
wall thickness of the 3/8" section is too thin. They should have
supplied two seperate bolts, solid steel.

Having said that, properly set up, there is very little you can't
do with the thing and I have used mine in some strange places. It
takes a bit of getting used to but even with the faults above I
wouldn't part with mine. I just wish they had engineered it better
even at a higher price.

Denis.
--
DenisG.
Pbase supporter
http://www.pbase.com/denisg

-- hide signature --

Brian - KM 5D!!! Canon s10-sold and still working! Canon S400-a great point and shoot!
My picture page:
http://www.pbase.com/cleanmaxx_brian/

My 91 Nissan Sentra SE-R
http://www.jbl.com/car/featured/installs/sentra.asp

5D DjD Contributing Member • Posts: 653
Re: 1 Year On........

Denis - good points to be aware of. My Manfrotto mono-pod has the spring loaded outer 3/8" threads around the solid smaller 1/4" thread. It's very common. My very old Velbron Video tri-pod only has the smaller solid thread for the head to attach to and it use to hold a big video head and a monster vhs camcorder on it. I now have a head that I use on both and I use a 1/4" to 3/8" adapter kinda like this.

I think having it screw onto the 1/4" stud is stronger than the spring loaded sleeve threads built in. I just let the spring loaded piece retract as I thread it on.
--
...Dennis

brobar Contributing Member • Posts: 506
That is a good idea

Where can you get an adapter like that? I want one just to be on the safe side!
--
-Brock
A few of my images: http://www.brockbarnes.com

OP cleanmaxx brian Senior Member • Posts: 1,086
Re: That is a good idea

Update:

I went to Home Depot and picked up a 3/8 inch bolt that is 1 inch long and it is SOLID NOW!!! In fact, the head itself has provisions for this "normal" bolt! (The OEM bolt uses a larger head)

Problem/issue/complaint issue SOLVED!

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Brian - KM 5D!!! Canon s10-sold and still working! Canon S400-a great point and shoot!
My picture page:
http://www.pbase.com/cleanmaxx_brian/

My 91 Nissan Sentra SE-R
http://www.jbl.com/car/featured/installs/sentra.asp

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