Quote Originally Posted by laz
Okay, I'm now also shocked. Were these decent brands? How did you compare them, doesn't B&H just have a single display for each model?

That's the one I settled on and I really like it for my LF. (I purchased it on-line )

Bob, my friend Shaun and his wife have a pair of Swarovski spotting scopes on apparently identical 3021Gs. New-style, with the flip locks. His is rock solid, hers is wobbly. Same vintage, too.

At B&H, I started with tripods whose prices I was willing to pay. Not one had enough torsional rigidity to use with a 700. Not one.

My wife saw this, saw my discomfort, and told me to try 'em all, regardless of price. So I did. Only two of the tripods in the store passed. One was a huge CF Gitzo priced at nearly $900. The other use a used small Zone VI whose legs insisted on splaying; not a problem on dirt, a bad problem on harder surfaces. She who must be obeyed told me to buy the Gitzo. I'm ashamed to report that I didn't obey her. Oh, yeah, B&H is a Berlebach dealer but when we were there no Berlebachs were on display.

My torsional rigidity test is pretty simple. If I press against the platform or touch the head's pan handle (or camera), does the point of aim shift? As far as I can tell, this always happens because of flex between leg sections. And yes, I try to tighten the leg locks as much as possible before trying to make the thing flex.

If so, not a good tripod for use with long lenses. For shortish lenses, certainly up to 200 mm on 35 mm still, my test doesn't make much sense.