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Vinten VB-AP2M Vision Blue System with Mid Level Spreader

B&H # VIVBAP2M Mfr # VB-AP2M
In Stock
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You Pay: $1,359.00
Product Highlights
  • Vision Blue Head
  • 2-Stage Aluminum Pozi-Loc Tripod
  • Mid-Level Spreader / Soft Case
  • Continuously Variable Counterbalance
  • Adjustable Camera Mounting Plate
  • Illuminated Blue LED Leveling Bubble
  • Pan & Tilt Lock
  • Load Capacity (Head) up to 11 lb
  • Load Capacity (Tripod) up to 55 lb
  • 2-position Central Selector (Spreader)

The Vinten VB-AP2M Vision Blue System with Mid Level Spreader is designed to provide the experienced camera operator with professional support to match the extremely high performance of today's lightweight camcorders and DSLRs equipped for video. It includes a Vision Blue Head, Two-stage Aluminum Pozi-Loc Tripod, and a Soft Case.

The Vinten Vision Blue Pan and Tilt Head incorporates adjustable continuously variable counterbalance, LF drag assemblies for pan and tilt motions, and an adjustable camera mounting plate with 1/4" screw and pin. Easy to access placement of pan and tilt brakes, drag controls, and counterbalance enables you to easily adjust camera settings.

Illuminated level bubble allows for head adjustment in locations with low lighting levels, and can provide 15 second illumination by pressing the push button. The Vinten Perfect Balance technology enables load balance between 4.6-11 lb (2.1-5 kg) with a low center of gravity of around 2.2” (55 mm), and allows the Vision Blue Pan and Tilt Head to balance the smaller lightweight cameras.

Equipped with the Vinten lubricated friction (LF) technology, it provides smooth movement of the camera. In addition, the pan and tilt brakes are located on the left side of the Vision Blue Pan and Tilt Head, and enable each axis on the head to be locked at any selected position. The camera can be mounted on the head with the help of a side plate attached to the camera, and then loaded from the back of the platform and fixed securely with a side plate clamp.

The Two-Stage Pozi-Loc Tripod (3819-3) made of aluminum is light at 7 lb (3.2 kg) and features a maximum load capacity of 55 lb (25 kg). The Pozi-Loc technology employed by this tripod makes use of an innovative cam-operated clamping system that offers easy 90° on to off turning while providing a visual indication that the tripod is securely fastened. The height of the tripod is adjustable from 16.4” (41.6 cm) to 61.5” (156.2 cm).

Designed for 75mm ball base range of Vinten heads, the Mid-Level Spreader (V4032-0001) is a lightweight (1.05 lb / 0.48 kg) component offering stability to tripods. With individually extendable arms and 3 lock knobs, the spreader offers flexibility in spreader radius, and for setting up the VB-AP2M Camera Support System on uneven grounds. In addition, a 2-position central selector can be used to determine overall footprint of your tripod.

The Rounded Soft Case (3358-3) compatible with the Vision 3, 6, 8, and 11 with two-stage Pozi-Loc tripod protects the equipment during travel, and allows you to carry them safely.

Vision Blue Head

Easy to access placement of pan and tilt brakes, drag controls, and counterbalance enables you to easily adjust camera settings
Illuminated level bubble allows for head adjustment in locations with low lighting levels, and provides 15 second illumination to the level bubble by pressing the pushbutton
Perfect Balance technology enables load balance between 4.6-11 lb (2.1-5 kg) with a low center of gravity of around 2.2" (55 mm), and allows the head to balance the smaller lightweight cameras
Vinten lubricated friction (LF) technology provides smooth movement of the camera
Pan and tilt brakes are located on the left side of the head, and enable each axis on the head to be locked at any selected position
Can be mounted on the head with the help of a side plate attached to the camera, and then loaded from the back of the platform and fixed securely with a side plate clamp
Features pan bar mounting points located at the rear of the head on either side of the camera mounting platform

Two-Stage Aluminum Pozi-Loc Tripod (3819-3)

Incorporates an aluminum construction
Lightweight - 7 lb (3.2 kg)
Comes with Pozi-Loc leg clamps offering easy setup
Tripod height adjustable from 16.4-61.5" (41.6 -156.2 cm)
Handles maximum load of 55 lb (25 kg)

Lightweight Mid-Level Spreader (V4032-0001)

Designed for 75mm ball base range of Vinten
Lightweight at 1.05 lb ( 0.48 kg)
Individually extendable arms and 3 lock knobs offer flexibility in spreader radius, and for setting up the VB-AP2F Camera Support System on uneven grounds
Enables individual telescopic adjustment of each leg and provides a wide range of stable footprints
2-position central selector can be used to determine overall footprint of your tripod

Rounded Soft Case (3358-3)

Compatible with the Vision 3, 6, 8 & 11 with two-stage Pozi-Loc tripod
Protects the equipment during travel and allows you to carry them safely
Vision Blue Head
Load Capacity 4.6 to 11.0 lb (2.1 to 5.0 kg) @ approx. 55 mm CofG
Tilt Range ±90º
Ball Base 75 mm
Pan Bar Single fixed length
Camera Fixing Standard Vision AS two-way sliding plate with one 1/4" camera screw and pin
Levelling Bubble Illuminated high contrast blue LED
Drag Control Calibrated infinitely adjustable LF drag system
Counterbalance Infinitely adjustable perfect balance
Color Black
Height 4.8" (121.9 mm)
Length 5.1" (129.5 mm)
Weight 5.3 lb (2.4 kg) inc. pan bar, camera plate and bowl clamp
Two-Stage Aluminum Pozi-Loc Tripod (3819-3)
Height Range 16.4 to 61.5" (41.6 to 156.2 cm)
Weight 7 lb (3.2 kg)
Maximum Load 55 lb (25 kg)
Rounded Soft Case (3358-3)
Compatibility Vision 3, 6, 8 & 11 with two-stage Pozi-Loc tripod

REVIEW SNAPSHOT®

by PowerReviews
VintenVB-AP2M Vision Blue System with Mid Level Spreader
 
4.7

(based on 21 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (16)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (4)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (1)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (0)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (0)

89%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Stable (11)
  • Unfolds quickly (5)
  • Easily adjusted (4)
  • Good footing (4)
  • Lightweight (4)

Cons

  • Heavy (4)

Best Uses

  • Video (6)
  • Stabilization (5)
  • Weddings (4)
  • Sports/action (3)
  • Travel (3)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Film professional (4), Pro photographer (4), Tech savvy (3)
    • Was this a gift?:
    • No (17)

Most Liked Positive Review

 

Compared to Sachtler carbon fiber sticks

My shooting partner has the Sachtler FSB-6 and carbon fiber leg set. I was VERY jealous of him. But got this instead on a recommendation from B&H.
Read complete review

My shooting partner has the Sachtler FSB-6 and carbon fiber leg set. I was VERY jealous of him. But got this instead on a recommendation from B&H.

What I like about the Vinten better:
* costs less
* the legs are MUCH more sturdy
* goes higher, goes lower,
* spreader goes farther = stability
* the head is SOLID and has a larger platform on top
* like the large footprint of the rubber feet. Bigger is better.

What I like about the Sachtler better:
* it is lighter (the specs on the Vinten are off. It weighs 14lbs out of the bag.
* the side-load snap plate on the Sachtler head is fantastic and much faster (and fits Manfrotto QR plates)
* the legs ARE faster to adjust height since there are only three locks

What I don't like about the Vinten:
* being British, nearly all the parts are oddball size. The QR plate? Price one. There's nothing else that fits, so you're stuck if you need a second.
* the threads out of the half-ball… goodness only knows what they are. I cannot find a bolt to fit them anywhere (needed to put it on a 100mm high HighHat and failed). Even the MFG mechanical specs on it don't match what I actually have.

The case is ok. The action on the head is nice, but not much different than the Sachtler counter balance. Do note that as you crank up the counterbalance on the Vinten you DO lose range of motion. A LOT of range at the higher settings. You don't lose that on the Sachtler.

I think the "low" end of the range for "perfect balance" on the Vinten is about right. You do need at least 3 lbs to get it to sit nice, more is better. So forget a 5D making it balance nicely… it will spring back (but you can always lock it off).

Overall, I think it's a great value. Super, super solid legs that are not much heavier than the CF Sachtler ones. The head is nice (but heavy) and works very well.

VS

Most Liked Negative Review

 

good tripod but man is it heavy and big

Two years ago, when I bought this for [$]bucks, it was the only decent tripod in town for the smaller cameras. All the reviews were raving about how it compared to the...Read complete review

Two years ago, when I bought this for [$]bucks, it was the only decent tripod in town for the smaller cameras. All the reviews were raving about how it compared to the ten thousand dollar tripods. I guess they were all big burly guys, because nobody talked about what this thing weighs. I don't even want to know exactly how many pounds. It's heavy. Does not pick up and move easily. It's a bit of a pain, even though the fluid head is great. And for all the cost of it, the sticks still have plastics parts in important places where they are crucial and can be easily broken. Not sure this was worth the money at all. Great for studio work or some place where you have a static shot.

Reviewed by 21 customers

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(1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

 
3.0

good tripod but man is it heavy and big

By Planet

from Dallas, Texas

About Me Pro Photographer

Verified Buyer

Pros

  • Good Stability

Cons

  • Cumbersome
  • Heavy

Best Uses

  • Video

Comments about Vinten VB-AP2M Vision Blue System with Mid Level Spreader:

Two years ago, when I bought this for [$]bucks, it was the only decent tripod in town for the smaller cameras. All the reviews were raving about how it compared to the ten thousand dollar tripods. I guess they were all big burly guys, because nobody talked about what this thing weighs. I don't even want to know exactly how many pounds. It's heavy. Does not pick up and move easily. It's a bit of a pain, even though the fluid head is great. And for all the cost of it, the sticks still have plastics parts in important places where they are crucial and can be easily broken. Not sure this was worth the money at all. Great for studio work or some place where you have a static shot.

Share this review

 
5.0

Amazing

By Jim

from Ashland, Oregon

About Me Pro Photographer

Verified Buyer

Pros

  • Folds Small
  • Good Stability

Cons

  • Heavy

Best Uses

  • Great For Every Shot
  • Great For Every Video Sit
  • Landscape/Scenery
  • Sports/Action
  • Video
  • Weddings/Events
  • Wildlife

Comments about Vinten VB-AP2M Vision Blue System with Mid Level Spreader:

Professional Videographer. Exceptionally smooth. Exceptionally sturdy. Exceptionally accurate. I've been in this racket for 35 years and never had a better tripod and head,

  • Was this a gift?:
  • No

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5.0

This is Your Best Friend

By BitterJester

from Highland park, IL

About Me Pro Photographer

Pros

  • Crisp Stop And Start
  • Good Stability
  • Smooth pan and tilt
  • Unfolds Quickly

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Sports/Action
    • Travel
    • Video
    • Weddings/Events
    • Wildlife

    Comments about Vinten VB-AP2M Vision Blue System with Mid Level Spreader:

    Sure, it's great to have a camera with the bells and whistles, but you need to put it on something that lets your camera shine. The Vision Blue has been in use with our company for 2 years and I'll be buying its the big brother, soon. With an HPX250, C300, or other lighter weight camera, this tripod, if set properly, means smooth pans and tilts and crisp stops wether you're at 18mm or 200mm. We shoot a mix of subjects, but I really appreciate it most when shooting live performance because it allows me to follow the subject and never have to fight the head. I'll never go back to the lower end Manfrotto tripods. As compared to Sachtler, I think it it comes down to preference, and I still like the Vinten better.

    • Was this a gift?:
    • No

    Share this review

     
    4.0

    Great overall

    By Indefilm

    from Oklahoma

    About Me Business Owner

    Verified Buyer

    Pros

    • Easy To Use
    • Professional Quality
    • Smooth Panning

    Cons

    • "perfect Balance" Bad

    Best Uses

    • In The Studio

    Comments about Vinten VB-AP2M Vision Blue System with Mid Level Spreader:

    I took my time searching for a new tripod in this price range and felt that the Vinten Vision Blue was the direction I wanted to go. I wasn't dissapointed at all with the smooth panning of the Vision Blue head. It is butter! The plate easily attached to my current C300 rig and was ready to use. The only grip that I have about this head is that the locking mechanism on the back which is called "perfect balance" isn't working for my camera. No matter how I position it on the tripod it doesn't fully stop the camera from slowly dropping. Even if I dile it in 100% it doesn't hold. That's a huge dissapointment and I'm considering a return for that reason alone. We'll see, maybe it's a defect on this particular head.

    • Was this a gift?:
    • No

    Share this review

     
    5.0

    Great value

    By Chrisccw

    from Houston

    About Me Tech Savvy

    Verified Buyer

    Pros

    • Lightweight

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • Stabilization

      Comments about Vinten VB-AP2M Vision Blue System with Mid Level Spreader:

      I own an old vision 10 and protouch 10, and this vision blue blows them away!

      • Was this a gift?:
      • No

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      (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

       
      5.0

      Compared to Sachtler carbon fiber sticks

      By NoCoErik

      from Northern Colorado

      About Me Aspiring Film Maker, Film Professional

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

        Cons

          Best Uses

            Comments about Vinten VB-AP2M Vision Blue System with Mid Level Spreader:

            My shooting partner has the Sachtler FSB-6 and carbon fiber leg set. I was VERY jealous of him. But got this instead on a recommendation from B&H.

            What I like about the Vinten better:
            * costs less
            * the legs are MUCH more sturdy
            * goes higher, goes lower,
            * spreader goes farther = stability
            * the head is SOLID and has a larger platform on top
            * like the large footprint of the rubber feet. Bigger is better.

            What I like about the Sachtler better:
            * it is lighter (the specs on the Vinten are off. It weighs 14lbs out of the bag.
            * the side-load snap plate on the Sachtler head is fantastic and much faster (and fits Manfrotto QR plates)
            * the legs ARE faster to adjust height since there are only three locks

            What I don't like about the Vinten:
            * being British, nearly all the parts are oddball size. The QR plate? Price one. There's nothing else that fits, so you're stuck if you need a second.
            * the threads out of the half-ball… goodness only knows what they are. I cannot find a bolt to fit them anywhere (needed to put it on a 100mm high HighHat and failed). Even the MFG mechanical specs on it don't match what I actually have.

            The case is ok. The action on the head is nice, but not much different than the Sachtler counter balance. Do note that as you crank up the counterbalance on the Vinten you DO lose range of motion. A LOT of range at the higher settings. You don't lose that on the Sachtler.

            I think the "low" end of the range for "perfect balance" on the Vinten is about right. You do need at least 3 lbs to get it to sit nice, more is better. So forget a 5D making it balance nicely… it will spring back (but you can always lock it off).

            Overall, I think it's a great value. Super, super solid legs that are not much heavier than the CF Sachtler ones. The head is nice (but heavy) and works very well.

            • Was this a gift?:
            • No

            Share this review

             
            5.0

            Stunning

            By Old Bull

            from Orange County, CA

            About Me Semi Pro

            Verified Buyer

            Pros

            • Excellent In Every Way
            • Good Stability
            • Unfolds Quickly

            Cons

            • NONE

            Best Uses

            • Duh

            Comments about Vinten VB-AP2M Vision Blue System with Mid Level Spreader:

            Head - Heavy, sturdy, smooth, professional quality. No whip-back on pans. Reliable partner in shooting where you have no attention on the tripod because you know it will always perform for you.

            Trustworthy.

            Variable pan and tilt drag by wheels, easy to find by touch and can be effortlessly adjusted while shooting. No clicks or steps on drag controls, infinitely variable in the slightest increments.

            Blue LED on level bubble, auto turns off in 20 sec. Runs on miniature 12 v battery. Looks cool. Functions perfectly.

            Exquisite manufacturing, beautiful design.

            Legs - Pozilock locks are very tight and positive. A little stiff now, but that's ok as I think they will loosen up a bit with more use. Very sturdy. Easy to drop legs on set up. Tripod opens up for very low position for ground-level shots. Very sturdy. When camera is in full zoom at 22x, tripod head and legs hold it steady so virtually no movement on image.

            Using Panny 160A, loaded (with battery, LED, 7" monitor with its battery, shot gun, cables, shoe adapters, articulating arm and wireless receiver.) Holds all steady.

            Spreader - Mid-level spreader has markings along the top of arms so you can see to what degree each extension is opened to match all three to the same length. Adjustable with locking wheels on each arm. Again, very well constructed, easy to use and adjust.

            Bag - Bag is beautiful and fits the system well, not too big, not too tight. Two inside pockets. One easily fits pan handle. Smaller pocket holds accessories.

            Zippers are heavy duty. Large outside clear plastic document sleeve holds paperwork, manual, if you want. (I'm currently not using it.)

            Love this system. Will be using it for a long time. A keeper.

            • Was this a gift?:
            • No

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            5.0

            Great legs

            By Mark

            from Tarzana CA.

            About Me Film Professional, Tech Savvy

            Verified Buyer

            Pros

            • Folds Small
            • Good Stability
            • Lightweight
            • Unfolds Quickly

            Cons

              Best Uses

              • Movies
              • Stabilization

              Comments about Vinten VB-AP2M Vision Blue System with Mid Level Spreader:

              Fantastic tripod system, I've owned Sachtler 20 & 30's and for the buck this is by far the best deal out there, very smooth head, great design and a fantastic deal from B & H

              • Was this a gift?:
              • No

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              (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

               
              5.0

              Not a Dream, but the Reality is Great!

              By Mizamook

              from Homer, AK

              Verified Buyer

              Pros

              • Good Stability
              • SMOOTH

              Cons

              • Heavy

              Best Uses

              • Field work

              Comments about Vinten VB-AP2M Vision Blue System with Mid Level Spreader:

              This tripod is awesome. Not perfect, but as I consider it "entry-level "prosumer"", for the price, I am happy.

              A bit heavy for the field, but it is a "good" heavy. There is not a single detail of this tripod and head that does not scream quality. It is very impressive.

              The spreader is very versatile, but a bit fidgety - not as fast as other mid spreaders I have used, but easy to get used to. I love being able to set up in ANY terrain, and being able to remove the spreader and drop the whole thing onto the deck for low angle shots. When necessary, the legs/spreader configuration can be VERY wide!

              The head pans and tilts smoothly. There is a bit of springback, but not overmuch. A bit of work with it, and I was able to modify my actions to compensate, and I have not had any problems since. Just a matter of "touch".

              The action does seem to be sensitive to temperature, but it is very easy to adjust for. It is good to make a habit of compensating for temperature BEFORE you make that once in a lifetime diagonal tracking shot!

              The spring lanyard is vital when carrying on shoulder. Another habit to develop: Secure the legs together, carry, then release them, set up. Because of the versatility of the spreader, the third leg does not stay together with the others of its own accord.

              The bowl clamp is great. Very handy, easy to tighten just so, does not slip, and the range of adjust-ability is surprising. To get a quick level takes about 10 seconds, up to a minute to dial it in. The bowl is a little hard to nudge slightly....this is a small detail for me.

              I have not lost a shot due to wind since I started using this tripod. I haven't really pushed th envelope too much yet, and do use additional weight and shelter when possible, however. It is light-years better than my old sticks and head, but those were so cheap it's not worth mentioning.

              If not careful, one can induce vibration by bumping the pan handle or gripping the focus ring or adjusting something on the camera in a heavy-handed way. I was a bit disappointed by this, but again, I needed a tripod that is as light as possible, in my price range, and was steady in most wind, and panned/tilted smoothly enough to not embarrass myself.

              This one fits the bill.

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              • No

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              (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

               
              5.0

              Smooth!

              By Evalano

              from Portland, OR

              About Me Film Professional

              Verified Buyer

              Pros

              • Good Stability
              • Lightweight
              • Unfolds Quickly

              Cons

                Best Uses

                • Movies
                • Stabilization

                Comments about Vinten VB-AP2M Vision Blue System with Mid Level Spreader:

                This tripod is fantastic! It's easy to set up and break down, very sturdy, and most importantly, the head is incredibly smooth. The illuminating bubble leveler is a great addition. The mid-level spreader adds stability but a little tricky to use at first. The only issue I have had is that mine arrived with a crack in the ball mount clamp. This led to it being shattered the first time the head was removed and placed on a crane. I spoke with customer service at Vinten though and they were very easy to deal with and sent a replacement part immediately and I was able to begin using the tripod again quickly. I highly recommend this tripod, but definitely check all the parts to make sure everything is good before getting rid of your old tripod and using this in the field.

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                • No

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                (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                5.0

                Great Tripod for an HPX-250

                By M2 Digital Post Inc.

                from San Diego, CA.

                About Me Independent Production

                Verified Buyer

                Pros

                • Good Stability
                • Unfolds Quickly

                Cons

                  Best Uses

                  • ENG
                  • Stabilization

                  Comments about Vinten VB-AP2M Vision Blue System with Mid Level Spreader:

                  Having recently purchased a Panasonic HPX-250 I needed a better set of sticks for it. I had been using a Manfroto rig for a while but it just wasn't smooth enough. While the Manfroto is fine for our in-studio stuff with a teleprompter The Vision Blue has become our workhorse for EGN field recording.

                  In the past I have spent a lot of time with a Sachtler and truly feel it is the best, but the Vision Blue is just a good for a small format camera, and at a much lower price point. The head is as smooth as silk and with Vinten's perfect balance system you can truly use the drag controls for what they were intended for. I would have no problem at all recommending the Vision Blue to any professional camera operator.

                  • Was this a gift?:
                  • No

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                  5.0

                  Vinten quality at economical price!

                  By ScubaDave

                  from New Jersey

                  About Me Video Professional

                  Verified Buyer

                  Pros

                  • Folds Small
                  • Good Stability
                  • Infinite adjustment

                  Cons

                    Best Uses

                    • Stabilization

                    Comments about Vinten VB-AP2M Vision Blue System with Mid Level Spreader:

                    Was going to buy a $400 Manfrotto product, but saw this in B&H's store and decided to go the extra bucks. So far, this is a great tripod. It's smooth, and the Counterbalance is a fantastic feature. Put the camera on the head, balance it by moving the plate, set the counterbalance and the darn thing stays at whaatever angle you leave it without messing with the drag controls.

                    That means you can use the drag controls to actually control your movement, instead of using them to set the balance. About time someone made that easy for us non-tripod experts.

                    The mid-level spreader instructions are confusing. It says to "turn the moulding." However, their idea of a moulding is actually the roundish center piece in the spreader. Once I figured that out, it was a snap.

                    A side note, on Vinten's website, there's a link to "Ask Pete" who is the Vinten Blue product manager. I emailed him on Friday afternoon (which wouild be Friday nigh in England) and had a response waiting on my computer Saturday morning. IOW, Vinten people check their company emmail over the weekend. Pete helped me figure out the spreader adjustment. Kudos to Pete & Vinten for such a high level of customer service.

                    Don't put your expensive camera on a cheap tripod - this is definitely worth the investment!

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                    • No

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                    (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                     
                    5.0

                    Amazing

                    By Jimmy Jam

                    from Orlando, FL

                    About Me Pro Photographer

                    Verified Buyer

                    Pros

                    • Compact
                    • Easily Adjusted
                    • Good Footing
                    • Lightweight
                    • Locks In Tight
                    • Smooth Movement

                    Cons

                      Best Uses

                      • Home
                      • Landscape/Scenery
                      • Outdoors
                      • Portraits
                      • Sports/Action
                      • Travel
                      • Video
                      • Weddings/Events
                      • Wildlife

                      Comments about Vinten VB-AP2M Vision Blue System with Mid Level Spreader:

                      I work for a video production company that uses the heavier duty Vinten sticks and heads and this thing has all of the bells and whistles of the big guys in a smaller package. Well worth every penny and then some. Super great value and quality.

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                      • No

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                      (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                       
                      5.0

                      Superb in every way

                      By jigbobby

                      from Oak Harbor WA

                      About Me Casual Photographer

                      Verified Buyer

                      Pros

                      • Easily Adjusted
                      • Good Footing
                      • Locks In Tight
                      • Smooth Movement

                      Cons

                      • Heavy

                      Best Uses

                      • Video

                      Comments about Vinten VB-AP2M Vision Blue System with Mid Level Spreader:

                      THis tripod is unbelievably smooth. No drag-back, no jerky starts, even at the highest drag setting. If you want smooth pans, to the point of not even being noticed, then this is for you. However lighter camcorders like my Canon XF100 are too light for the balance settings; hopefully this will be addressed by Vinten with a heavier mounting plate or something. Other than that, and being a tad heavy, this tripod is perfect.

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                      • No

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                      (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                       
                      4.0

                      Great But Watch Out For Stuck Plate

                      By Jamie L

                      from San Francisco, CA

                      Verified Reviewer

                      Pros

                      • Easily Adjusted
                      • Good Footing
                      • Locks In Tight
                      • Smooth Movement

                      Cons

                      • Plate Screw Sticks

                      Best Uses

                        Comments about Vinten VB-AP2M Vision Blue System with Mid Level Spreader:

                        I absolutely love this tripod head. Everything you love about the larger Vinten heads now designed for todays lighter cameras. The balance springs are still a bit too strong for a camera as light as a T2i or 60D with the plastic kit lens, but throw a nice heavy L-series or larger zoom lens on them and it works great even with such a small camera.

                        The only problem I've run into with the Vinten Blue is the tripod plate screw and pin. The screw is designed to only unscrew a certain distance out of the pin before it locks to prevent it from falling out of the tripod plate completely. This stops the user from unscrewing it all the way and possibly losing the screw and pin. It's a nice design feature, but I've learned the hard way that when attaching the tripod plate to certain cameras and accessories with a deeper than normal hole, the screw locks into the pin before it's come far enough out of the hole to remove the plate. Sometime it just sticks a bit and a little wiggling will get it loose. With the Zacuto Gorilla Baseplate it is particularly troublesome. I've had it become so stuck that it took over an hour and the work of three people pulling in different directions to get the plate off.

                        I spoke with a Vinten tech and he said they were aware of the issue but had no advice other than the 3 person solution. So, if you're buying this for your DSLR with Zacuto hardware, you might want to test it out yourself before committing to it.

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                        • No

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                        (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                         
                        5.0

                        Love this tripod - very pleased.

                        By Matt

                        from Bay Area, CA

                        Verified Buyer

                        Pros

                        • Easily Adjusted
                        • Good Footing
                        • Locks In Tight
                        • Smooth Movement

                        Cons

                          Best Uses

                          • Video
                          • Weddings/Events

                          Comments about Vinten VB-AP2M Vision Blue System with Mid Level Spreader:

                          I am extremely happy with this tripod system. I recently upgraded from Bogen Manfrotto systems (501, 503, 516) heads. I did a lot of research online as to what tripod would be the best for a budget of $1,300 or less and selected the VInten Blue. I recently received it, tested it out, and used it to shoot a wedding last Saturday, and I must say that I am very impressed. Everything about the system is well thought out and professional. The legs lock and unlock with a distinct mechanism so that you can adjust them confidently and quickly, there is a built-in mechanism that is a clever way to secure the tripod when it is collapsed, the ball head is much easier to adjust than other tripods I have used, the perfect balance system is extremely nice (allows you to tilt the head forward or back, and when you release the head it stays at that angle perfectly), the pant and tilt drag can be dialed in and there are numbers for the drag so that it's repeatable, I like that you can illuminate the level bubble so that you can make sure the head is level in dark environments, the bag works well, and the #1 feature is that the head is extremely smooth. I was shooting video with a Canon EF 70-200mm lens at the 200mm end, and I could easily make very smooth adjustments that were extremely fluid. So much better than my previous experience with tripod heads. It's not cheap, but you get what you pay for, and this is a high quality system. I wish that the sticks could get the head up a little higher (more than 6 feet or so), but I could have always bought a different set of sticks for that :) Also, the mid-level spreader was a little tricky for me to figure out at first (because I hadn't used one before and because there are instructions for the legs and head that came with it, but not the mid-level spreader), but it's easy to connect and disconnect, and I figured it out soon enough. Great tripod system.

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                          4.0

                          Value

                          By cbap

                          from Toronto, ON

                          About Me Film Professional

                          Verified Reviewer

                          Pros

                          • Durable
                          • Easy To Use

                          Cons

                            Best Uses

                            • Documentaries
                            • HD Shooting
                            • Shooting Indoors
                            • Shooting Outdoors
                            • Travel

                            Comments about Vinten VB-AP2M Vision Blue System with Mid Level Spreader:

                            I spent hours researching this and without a doubt, it's a clear value winner in the tripod category. You cannot buy a better video tripod on a dollar-by-dollar basis.

                            It's good enough for any professional shoot. But, the point of buying this is really to minimize your load - so it's obviously best to use it with smaller cameras.

                            Worth noting that the head is built to counterbalance more than to solidly lock off. If you're within the weight limit it's great. For example: it works beautifully a canon XF300. But you will be seriously uneasy using it with a standard broadcast camera, or (god forbid) a teleprompter.

                            One unexpected downside is the plates can be difficult to source and are expensive.

                            • Was this a gift?:
                            • No

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                            4.0

                            Incredibly Stable!

                            By Ed

                            from North Coast state

                            About Me Tech Savvy

                            Verified Buyer

                            Pros

                            • Good Stability

                            Cons

                              Best Uses

                                Comments about Vinten VB-AP2M Vision Blue System with Mid Level Spreader:

                                After four years of shooting oral history interviews using a still camera tripod, I graduated to shooting motion videos. I quickly learned that I needed a more capable set of sticks and head. Not one to rush into a purchase, I perused the web for products available and reviews by professionals. I finally settled on the Vinten Blue System based on price and performance. I cannot wait take begin shooting in the field with this new equipment. The testing I have done to date indicates that I will not be disappointed.

                                • Was this a gift?:
                                • No

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                                (4 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

                                 
                                5.0

                                Smooooooooooooooth!

                                By The House Snooper

                                from South Bend, IN

                                About Me Broadcast Professional

                                Verified Buyer

                                Pros

                                • Good Stability
                                • Smooth pans tilts

                                Cons

                                  Best Uses

                                  • Commercial Production
                                  • Video Production

                                  Comments about Vinten VB-AP2M Vision Blue System with Mid Level Spreader:

                                  I run my own production company and was due for a tripod upgrade. After much research and debate I decided on the Vision Blue. [...] I've used it on a few shoots now and it works very well. The Perfect Balance setup is a time saver when trying to grab shots at a moments notice. Doing pans, tilts, moving shots or any combination while zooming in or out are effortless. The legs are easy to set up and sturdy, I just wish they were carbon fiber. Overall a good buy, it won't let you down.

                                  • Was this a gift?:
                                  • No

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                                  (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                                   
                                  5.0

                                  Excellent tripod for the price

                                  By Steve

                                  from Vermont

                                  Verified Buyer

                                  Comments about Vinten VB-AP2M Vision Blue System with Mid Level Spreader:

                                  Once it is dialed in for your camera, it has a solid feel and smooth tilts and pans. I really like the quarter-turn click locks on the tripod legs. Excellent carry bag too.

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