I'm looking to buy a video head for my Manfrotto 3021 tripod (old school, heavy, but it has served me well and does everything I need it to do). I've been considering the Manfrotto 504HD. I'm using a Canon 7D, and want to add a rail and follow focus setup in the future, as well as be able to handle the configuration and weight of several current accessories (Zoom H4n, mic).
Anyone used the 504HD? Any other suggestions? My aim is to keep my kit lean and focused. Thanks for sharing.
I have a manfrotto 516 video head. It's pricey, but do you want to put your expensive camera & rigging on the cheapest tripod you can get? It's got plenty of capacity for rails, mattebox, viewfinder, etc. I used to put a 12 pound 3 chip betacamSp camera on it, so it's got plenty of capacity for the DSLR.
It's true that it's not as smooth as a Vinten or one of the other "professional" heads, but with a little planning you can still get a smooth tilting or panning shot.
If you look to buy a used one of eBay, be aware that the heads do loose their fluidity over time, and either make sure the seller knows what they're talking about when they tell you it's in mint shape, or that they'll take it back if you're not happy.