Experiences with larger Gitzo carbon-fiber tripods

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Now that they have been out for awhile, does anybody have any good, bad, or indifferent experiences with the newer Gitzo Carbon Fiber tripod leg sets? Specifically I am looking at the G1325, G1348, G1349 or G1548 models. Thanks,

-- Ellis (evphoto@insync.net), July 08, 1998


I have owned a G1349 for about 18 months, and have been using it with a Linhof Technikardan 45 for about 10 months. I find that this tripod is amply stable and free from vibration, even at full leg extension, and I greatly value its combination of light weight and versatility.

I find the rapid center column useful with 35 mm cameras; however, I find even a relatively light view camera is awkward on it -- one must support the weight of the camera with one hand while locking the column with the other. When using my Linhof, I remove the column and use the tripod as a G1348.

I have no complaints about this tripod and wouldn't hesitate to buy another.

-- Sean Donnelly (donnelly@c-com.net), July 19, 1998.

I own and use Gitzo 1227, and used to own Gitzo 1548, which I recenltly sold, and just ordered Gitzo 1325.

For 35mm system 1227 is terrific. It weighs next to nothing, is very stable, and has only 3 leg section, which simplifies its setup a lot. It is perfect, provided you don't use any very long and heavy lenses (I think AF-S 80-200 with 2x teleconverter or 300/4 are about the max).

For 4x5 -- I use Arca Swiss F Metric (somewhat heavier than plain F) 1227 is usable, but not great. It might be just paranoia, but I kept feeling it was about to turn over, esp. if knocked accidentally.

1548 is an unbelievable tripod -- feels like a large oak table as far as stability. It has a large flat platform, and very thick legs. The reasons I sold it, opting for 1325, are that it is too heavy, too bulky (due to large platform), and has 4 leg section (which is a huge pain in the neck as far as I am concerned). If you are shooting out of the car, or are very very very athletic,

I did not have a chance to use 1325 yet, but played with 1348, and other than the 4 section legs (1325 has 3 section legs) and the column I not only don't need, but actually hate (1325 has no column), I found 1348 to be the best compromise. It weighs 1.5 lbs more than 1227 (which is quite a bit), but 2 lbs less than 1548. Also, having thinner legs, and smaller platform on top, it is less bulky, which makes it feel even lighter incomparison to 1548.

To summarize, if you shoot 8x10, or work exclusively out of the car, or shoot with huge heavy lenses, you probably (but not for sure) need 1548. If you shoot 4x5 and below, and if your 35mm lenses weigh and cost less than your car, you will most likely find series 3 a much better buy. (Note that 1325 is only $630, so it's just slightly more expensive than 1227, whereas 1348 is a LOT more expensive, and 1548 is a killer). Finally, if you only shoot 35mm and have no plans for lenses longer/heavier than 300/4, I'd recommend Series 2.

-- Sergey Zhupanov (zhupanov@usa.net), January 04, 2000.

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