Benro S2 tripod head

sk1

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http://www.benrousa.com/products_details_S2#features

http://www.adorama.com/BES2.html

I really like the looks of this thing, not so happy with the manfrotto ball head on my current setup....I think these came out just this last October. I am pretty sure I have to get one and try it lol. What do you guys think? Pair that up with a lightweight tripod and I'm thinking I'll have a darn good setup. I hate my vanguard/monfrotto one currently.

edit: video with spotting scope
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PtOcXkImIj0

edit edit: another video
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NxolhiA--8A
 
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sk1

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sure hope so, might order it very soon......will let you guys know if i do and get my hands on it
 
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sk1

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well, 3 to 7 business days now....if anyone is interested i'll let you guys know what i think
 

trdhunter

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Let us know. Im currently shopping for a tripod and head and comparing all the options. Anyone have any experience with vanguard tripods?
 
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sk1

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I will let you know how it is as soon as i can....it arrives wednesday but ill be out hunting all day, not sure if i will look at it much until thursday.

i have the vanguard 233ao tripod right now and its not for me........there is absolutely nothing "wrong" with it, just not the setup im looking for.....i think you need to be more specific about what you're looking for rather than just dropping a brand name....and find what ones fit that category then review them. on adorama and the bhphotovideo site you can specify weight, height, min height, price range, all that stuff to help you find a few tripods you want to consider

i just took a shot in the dark after hours and hours trying to decide what tripod i wanted and ordered this one: http://promaster.com/products.asp?product=XC525 ....why? it has the specs i was looking for, 59" tall, and folds down to 15" for packing.....it comes with a ball head and with the head included it weighs 2lbs 12oz, ill just swap out the head with that benro s2. i wanted this tripod: http://promaster.com/products.asp?product=7511 but its a few inches shorter than i like and didnt want to pay the $299

there are not alot of reviews to be found on the promaster tripod i ordered, but im fairly confident i will like it, time will tell, that arrives wednesday also
 

trdhunter

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Thanks. I am not sure exactly what I want as far as weight. Looking for all around use with some backpacking but I have been thinking of buying a small tripod also for the pack. In general, what is the minumum weight you would recomend for 80mm+ spotter and still be stable? Also have a gift card and noticed that sportsmans carries vanguard and not much else. From what I looked at, was not impressed as they were large and heavy.
 
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sk1

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Well, you may want to do a separate post in the optics section to get some tripod advice or help with your decision.....by no means am I an expert on the subject.

When you say minimum weight to support an 80mm spotter, do you mean the weight the tripod itself is rated to support, or how much the tripod itself weighs....most 80mm spotting scopes weigh somewhere around 4lbs, and depending on the head on the tripod another 1lb or so. Then if you attach anymore things like a camera for digiscoping that's a little more weight to support. So I would think you need to consider all that when looking at how much weight a tripod is rated to support. As long as it meets your weight requirements i think you should be fine, and obviously some are still more stable than others, i would imagine the leg thickness or diameter when extended can play a role i this....and thats when it comes down to looking at reviews and talking to people in making your final decision.

As far as the weight of the tripod itself, my primary use is backpacking so im going for as light and as stable as possible......while still having a relatively short minimum height for putting in my pack, my current one compresses to 24" and my new one will be 15", for me, 24" was just too long for how I use it. Weight of the tripod I would imagine when not packing the heavier it is the more stable to some extent, but I wouldnt be buying an overweight tripod if using it for backpacking. I would say 3 to 3.6lbs or so is average, and the price starts going up as you start to go sub 3lbs. If you only occasionally use it for packing i would think there is nothing wrong with the 3 to 3.6lb average or so, unless you are extremely weight conscious. Now one benefit about buying a tripod that is rated to support more weight than just your scope, is the ability to hang your pack or bow or something off of the hook on the bottom of the center column (not all tripods have this hook). This will help for more stability and less shaking on windy days.

This is me completely talking out my ass here, just my opinions from my limited experience and reading and researching to choose a new tripod. I do recommend making a separate post in optics and taking advice from others as well.....but it will be more helpful for them to give you advice if you can specify to a certain extent what you think you're looking for out of a tripod.....max height, min height, backpacking or not, etc

Hope that helps a little!
 

trdhunter

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Thanks, that helps. Just way too many options out there and I am not happy with my current tripod and do not want to keep buying until I get it right. I will do some more research and once I am sure what I want, Ill ask for some recomendations. Good luck with the new head and looking forward to hearing how it works out.
 

Matt Cashell

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Well sk!,

I ordered the Benro S2 w/ extra plate to give a whirl. A .8 lb. fluid head for under $80 seems like a good option, and I look forward to trying it out.
 
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sk1

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Well sk!,

I ordered the Benro S2 w/ extra plate to give a whirl. A .8 lb. fluid head for under $80 seems like a good option, and I look forward to trying it out.

that's cool, sorry i didnt give you better thoughts on it yet!! you'd be a better one to give it a review anyways as this is my first experience with a fluid head....let me know what you think, i like it alot
 
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sk1

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ill let BB respond with his thoughts, maybe he has had more time behind it since i asked him about it....although i agree with him that it has quite a bit of resistance, that is my only complaint but i still like it and plan on using it next season.
 
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Matt Cashell

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This head has some potential. It has a smooth action, and works well with a full size spotter. the resistance is firm for a head this size, but it is not really a problem.

The build quality is appropriate for the price point. This is no Jim White head, but it seems alright so far.
 

S&S Archery (Rob)

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This head has some potential. It has a smooth action, and works well with a full size spotter. the resistance is firm for a head this size, but it is not really a problem.

The build quality is appropriate for the price point. This is no Jim White head, but it seems alright so far.

Do you still have this head, and if so, how do you like it?
 

Matt Cashell

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I do still have the head, but I don't use it anymore. Over time, I came to realize It just wasn't as smooth as I expected from a fluid head, and I ended up just using a Manfrotto ball head.

Perhaps a different unit would have been smoother, but my copy seemed OK to begin with, but didn't really grow on me.
 

S&S Archery (Rob)

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Yea, we stopped carrying the VH-1. Doing a ton of research led me to think that the S2 IS the VH-1. Comparing them in our shop, we could only find minor differences, and the fit, feel, and function were identical.
 
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