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Donald Kauffman

Choosing boom pole

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Hi folks

 

I'm investing in my first good quality boom pole but have no way to try before I buy unfortunately. I'm trying to limit myself to around €600 and have been looking at the Ambient QSX 5100 and the Panamic Maxi 5811.

 

I'm trying to find sort of an all rounder to do for both drama and docs, although I know there'll have to be some compromise. Does anyone have experience with either of these poles? Do you prefer one brand over the other? 

 

I'd love to get some feedback before making a decision. There doesn't seem to be much 'in practice' information about either of them 

 

Any advice much appreciated 

 

Cheers

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I have used Panamic poles for decades.

Reliable strong and easily serviced

I have two KTek booms that I love also

 

Some boom operators favour Ambient!

 

Cheers

 

mike

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I love my VdB poles. I have an 18 foot and a 9 foot. The 18 foot is my go to for narrative collapses enough to get in some pretty tight spaces. They are fairly rigid and the bottom section is great re: handling noise. And you can easily add or remove a cable without and soldering. This works great when doing different types of gigs where an internal cable or lack of cable would be desirable.

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PSC was my go to (I don't boom anymore, sadly). K-tek is the most common pole I'd dare say. A solid buy. 

Ambient is probably the one I'd get now if I had another swing at booming. Very solid, which I like since I want the transmitter on top of the pole 

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Panamic is a great choise, but if you want to use it also for documentaries why go with a boompole that collapses to 1,50m? Thats fine on a cart but no so fine for docs. I have the Panamic Mini 53-5807 that's about the same extended length (4 meter) but is a 5-section instead of a 3-section so it collapses to 1 meter (2/3rds of the one your looking at) so more suitable for an all-round boompole IMO.

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20 minutes ago, Frido Beck said:

Panamic is a great choise, but if you want to use it also for documentaries why go with a boompole that collapses to 1,50m? Thats fine on a cart but no so fine for docs. I have the Panamic Mini 53-5807 that's about the same extended length (4 meter) but is a 5-section instead of a 3-section so it collapses to 1 meter (2/3rds of the one your looking at) so more suitable for an all-round boompole IMO.

Have you used an Ambient QXS? Do you know how they do compare?

 

QXS580 is excellent for a lot of different jobs. 80-330cm and 620gr. It is very sized convinient and fits well to various mid size Orca/K tek boom bags.

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2 minutes ago, Kisaha said:

Have you used an Ambient QXS? Do you know how they do compare?

 

QXS580 is excellent for a lot of different jobs. 80-330cm and 620gr. It is very sized convinient and fits well to various mid size Orca/K tek boom bags.

No I don't have work experience with Ambient boompoles. I just checked out the length the original poster has in mind (about 4 meters extended) so I mentioned another model that may be better suited for the needs mentioned. (narrative & documentary)

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If youre looking for something to move between drama and doc Ive found a pole that can go from approx 3-12ft to cover most situations.

 

For travel gigs I find it useful to pick up a smaller pole, which also comes in handy if you need to jump in a car or boom around other tight spaces.

 

You wont go wrong with any of the brands mentioned above...

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QXS Series from Ambient; wear the collars from QS Series.

The collars from QS is the best at the market right now IMHO.

One of the thing I like at QS Series.

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2 hours ago, VAS said:

QXS Series from Ambient; wear the collars from QS Series.

The collars from QS is the best at the market right now IMHO.

One of the thing I like at QS Series.

 

Those collars are quite nice, but I prefer those of a Panamic boom. Those things just ooze quality and craftsmanship 

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I mainly work with Ambient poles. The Ambient QXS series uses quite thin walls (1 mm)  which work well up to ~2.5 meters. All above that and the pole is going to bow like hell (depending on the mic). In 2016 I did a TV series and our long pole was a QXS 5130. Fully extended I had to move the pole almost a second before the CMIT in a basket with fur would move. Quite unprecise. I now own a Ambient QP 480 which uses 1.5mm walls instead of 1mm. It is a huge difference in terms of stiffness and precise movement.

 

If someday I need to get a very short pole (< 2m), it´s going to be a QXS. Otherwise QP or QS.

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11 hours ago, Frido Beck said:

Panamic is a great choise, but if you want to use it also for documentaries why go with a boompole that collapses to 1,50m? Thats fine on a cart but no so fine for docs. I have the Panamic Mini 53-5807 that's about the same extended length (4 meter) but is a 5-section instead of a 3-section so it collapses to 1 meter (2/3rds of the one your looking at) so more suitable for an all-round boompole IMO.

 

It's such a shame the Panamic Mini 53-5807 doesn't have a detachable tip. I have three Panamic poles all with detachable tips and this pole would be a very welcome addition/the missing piece. Alas Panamic said it wasn't possible to get this pole custom built with a detachable tip. Maybe it's time I hassled them again.

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Thanks so much everyone for the replies. The collapsed length is certainly an issue I have been thinking about but for my budget I have been trying to stay around the €600 mark which is why I was looking at the Panamic 5811.

 

I had pretty much decided on Panamic anyway and these comments have confirmed that. I'll just have to work out what I can afford to go with. The Mini 5807 certainly does sound like the ideal candidate.

 

Thanks again

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2 hours ago, Nate C said:

 

It's such a shame the Panamic Mini 53-5807 doesn't have a detachable tip. I have three Panamic poles all with detachable tips and this pole would be a very welcome addition/the missing piece. Alas Panamic said it wasn't possible to get this pole custom built with a detachable tip. Maybe it's time I hassled them again.

I can understand. personally I don't like the Panamic detachable tips (or any other detachable tip on boompole that's specific to a certain model/manufactorer, I also have a really small PSC boompole that has its own specific detachable tip). I use a third party quick release. I love my Mini 53-5807.

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2 hours ago, Donald Kauffman said:

Thanks so much everyone for the replies. The collapsed length is certainly an issue I have been thinking about but for my budget I have been trying to stay around the €600 mark which is why I was looking at the Panamic 5811.

 

I had pretty much decided on Panamic anyway and these comments have confirmed that. I'll just have to work out what I can afford to go with. The Mini 5807 certainly does sound like the ideal candidate.

 

Thanks again

Buy once cry once 😀

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I've been quite pleased with my Ambient Qx580. My work has a 90% doc vs 10% scripted ratio and I find it covers 99% of my overall needs. 

With a protective case it also fits perfectly in tripod bag when traveling by plane. 

 

This comes down to personal preference, but I like also boompoles that you can have semi tight, instead of the fully loose or lock models.

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