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In-depth tripod overview: Gitzo Systematic Sequence 3 (GT3543LS): Digital Pictures Overview

The Gitzo GT3543LS on the seashore, with the Gitzo GFHG1 Fluid Gimbal Head on high, holding a 500mm lens and full-frame digital camera.

Gitzo Systematic Sequence 3 (GT3543LS) | $1000

Gitzo was based in France as a tripod and digital camera firm by Arsène Gitzhoven in 1917 and has been producing superior tripods with interchangeable platforms, columns and leveling units for greater than 40 years. Their naming conference of designating sizes by numbered ‘sequence,’ and modular platforms as ‘systematic’ tripods, has been round so lengthy that many different producers use these as a reference level when describing their very own wares.

Way back, Gitzo merged with the Italian tripod maker Manfrotto, and each at the moment are part of the Vitec Imaging Group of corporations. In the present day, the mixed Manfrotto/Gitzo manufacturing facility in Bassano del Grappa, Italy, produces extra tripods than virtually each different producer on the earth, utilizing a mixture of automation and streamlined meeting honed over many many years. The sheer scale of output makes their continued high quality all of the extra spectacular.

Key specs and what’s included

  • Max. peak 146 cm (57.5″), or 148 cm (58.2″) with 50mm ‘large toes’
  • Minimal peak of 9 cm (3.5″)
  • Folds to 55 cm (21.6″) with 14 cm (5.5″) diameter
  • Weighs 1.94 kg (4.27 lbs) with flat platform
  • 25kg (55.1 lbs) load restrict
  • Three leg angles (23° / 53° / 86° )
  • 4 leg sections (33mm high leg diameter / 29 / 25.3 / 21.8mm)
  • 70mm platform side-clamped with launch button
  • Massive weight hook beneath platform
  • Bubble stage included on apex
  • Detachable 33mm toes on normal 3/8″ thread
  • Contains mud bag, instruments, directions and 50mm large toes

Gitzo up to date their ‘Systematic’ tripod line in 2016, with new supplies and designs, and nonetheless affords many systematic choices for his or her tripods; from video bowls and leveling balls, to sliding carbon-fiber heart columns and geared columns. Past these, there are a bevy of assorted toes, starting from snowshoes to numerous lengths of spike and mushroom-style rubber toes, all utilizing a standard 3/8”-16 threading, so even rock claws or toes from different producers can be utilized. Given the prevalence and longevity of Gitzo Systematics within the market, authentic Gitzo equipment are straightforward to search out new at numerous retailers, in addition to on the used market.

In comparison with others

This tripod was examined and in contrast with its modular apex friends. Left to proper; ProMediaGear TR344, Actually Proper Stuff TVC-34, Sirui SR-3204, FLM CP34-L4 II, Leofoto LM-364C, Gitzo GT3543LS.

The Gitzo GT3543LS was examined and in contrast alongside tripods in the identical class of ‘Sequence 3’ (33-36mm high leg tube diameter) ‘Systematic’ (modular apex with detachable platform) kind, by way of dimension and utility, together with merchandise from Sirui, Actually Proper Stuff, ProMediaGear, Leofoto and FLM. We’ll be publishing full evaluations of these fashions within the coming days and weeks.

All of those tripods had been utilized in 4 seasons of sand, snow, mud, rain and saltwater; arrange within the bog-like Atlantic salt marshes and the wind-swept Appalachian mountains. They’ve been loaded with gimbal heads, ball heads, geared and pano-heads, and as much as 4kg (8.8lb) lenses connected to cameras starting from APS-C to medium-format, taking pictures something from long-exposure landscapes to excessive telephoto birds-in-flight. The one check they didn’t undergo was being rough-handled on the airport, due to pandemic journey restrictions.

Top comparability

Under is a relative peak comparability between the Gitzo GT3543LS and a 6 foot (1.83m) photographer.

Excessive Mid Low

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First impressions

The large, however shallow apex with the Gitzo/Manfrotto 3/8″ threaded ‘Straightforward Hyperlink’ accent port.

On the high of the GT3543LS is the big, solid magnesium systematic apex, completed within the sturdy ‘noir décor’ speckle end frequent to all Gitzos. Every leg clevis is equally constructed and completed, with a spring-loaded, ratcheting leg angle cease. The usual Gitzo ‘Secure-Lock’ platform is secured within the side-clamping apex with a re-positionable locking lever and a security launch tucked beneath. A beneficiant weight hook is beneath the platform.

The four-section legs are labeled as utilizing ‘Carbon eXact,’ which, in response to Gitzo, ‘optimizes the fiber composition for every tube dimension, utilizing HM (Excessive Modulus) carbon fiber within the narrower tubes to make them stiffer.’ This can be a good factor, because the GT3543LS has the thinnest relative leg tubes on this class of 3-series tripods. Along with this, the leg locks are the ‘G-Lock Extremely’ kind, which suggests they get tighter as extra strain is utilized, and are nicely sealed towards dust and moisture. Many different producers use comparable leg locks, however might not have catchy names for them.

The 50mm ‘large toes’ that come pre-installed are sturdy and nice for studio work, however require cautious positioning for excessive angles and have a tendency to gather particles when used within the subject. The included normal 33mm bullet-shaped toes are small in comparison with the mushroom-head toes on different tripods on this group. Their slender width means the leg locks can hit the bottom earlier than the toes do when the legs are totally splayed out.

The three/8″ threaded ‘Straightforward Hyperlink’ attachment port for equipment is slightly massive and atypical, in comparison with the 1/4” threading seen on most equipment and different tripods. This simply requires a reducer bushing (included with most heads today) to connect that ‘magic arm’ or clamp to carry a telephone, battery pack or different small gadget. Actually, the variety of ‘Straightforward Hyperlink’ equipment even provided by Gitzo or Manfrotto appears very slim, so the selection to make use of that is considerably baffling.

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Use within the subject

The Gitzo GT3543LS is a big merchandise to pack into the sphere, each in apex diameter and the varied components that stick out, and we seen this a bit greater than with the opposite tripods on this class, regardless of the Gitzo having the smallest leg thickness. Within the studio, the top-heavy dimension isn’t an issue, and people ‘large toes’ can keep put in for spectacular stability, however the carbon fiber and sturdy construct ask to be taken out to the broader world. The very large apex creates a thick-on-one-end package deal that isn’t straightforward to pack away, so it begs for the (optionally available) strap or padded bag to hold it. For brief walks, extending one leg and utilizing the entire thing as a giant mountain climbing pole labored fairly nicely, however once more, it was a noticeable distinction to the competitors.

The leg angle locks are straightforward to tug out from the entrance, however laborious to push from behind resulting from their slim internals. The ratcheting motion is constructive when pulling the leg down, and it’s straightforward to set the angles of every leg. Sadly, the legs could be pushed beneath the apex and simply hold going since there isn’t a heart column to cease them, leading to an odd angle that generally makes packing up all three legs of the tripod a bit tougher than it must be. Many different columnless tripods on this class have a tough cease on the stowed place.

The well-tested Gitzo G-locks, which lock and unlock with a reassuring tactile really feel, make extending and securing every leg of the tripod a pleasure. Greedy all three locks directly is straightforward with the rubber grips, even with gloves on, however they do require extra rotation than the opposite leg locks on this group.

The tubes themselves are very exactly mated and wish a little bit of a pull to totally prolong, which suggests the Gitzo legs won’t ‘cascade out’ on their very own when unlocked. Nonetheless, adjusting every leg size as soon as prolonged continues to be pretty straightforward and managed, regardless of this exact match.

The well-proven Gitzo Secure-Lock platform is one of the best in its class, with a sturdy, textured plastic disk over a machined aluminum platform. This gives a greater grip and a few vibration isolation when in comparison with an all-metal platform, and the inclusion of a tiny set-screw can insure that any head will keep connected. Eradicating and changing it with a video bowl or heart column accent with a 70mm diameter is each straightforward and safe, due to the Secure-Lock recessed security catch beneath the apex.

With a gimbal and huge lens on high, or a panoramic head and leveling gear, the Gitzo GT3543LS by no means feels overburdened or unstable. The marginally steeper leg angles, at 23°, present the required peak to be aggressive with comparable tripods of this dimension, however theoretically may cut back stability. Nonetheless, that principle isn’t validated, and within the subject and studio, this tripod handles weight and motion with aplomb. Really, Gitzo’s refinement throughout generations of this kind and dimension of tripod appears evident in the way it all simply quietly will get out of the way in which and lets the digital camera and scene be the main target.


Cleansing the GT3543LS is pretty easy, and leg disassembly is briefly described within the included directions booklet. The leg locks have apparent gaskets sealing them from the weather, and the one-piece shim makes the entire course of straightforward. Nonetheless, as with all Gitzo merchandise, spare components are straightforward to search out if wanted (even lengthy into the long run).

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Check outcomes

Vibrations could make even the sharpest lens prove mushy, blurred pictures, and might destroy lengthy exposures. Within the typical use instances for this class of tripod, lowering the results of vibration turns into extraordinarily necessary, since longer focal lengths and better resolutions enlarge the results of any motion, and environmental vibrations like wind and water can have an growing impact on bigger legs and equipment. Digital camera vibration could be mechanically minimized with mirror lockup, digital shutters, and a distant shutter launch, whereas including weight to the underside of the tripod (with the burden hook or a tripod stone bag) may also help stabilize the entire setup. Nonetheless, not all sources of vibration could be eradicated, so we examined whether or not the tripod will dampen them or transmit and replicate them to the digital camera.

The tripod legs had been totally prolonged, and our vibration analyzer for heavy-duty tripods (an iPad on a 3.2 kg (7 lb) cantilevered weight) was mounted on to the flat platform’s 3/8″ threaded bolt with an extended lens plate. An industrial solenoid valve with a plastic hammer was used as a supply of vibration (a knock to the underside of 1 leg). The ensuing graph of all three accelerometers exhibits each the resistance of the tripod to the preliminary shock, in addition to the speed of decay for residual vibration inside the tripod.

Gitzo GT3543LS vibration resistance check outcomes – click on for a bigger graph

*Be aware that this graph is relative solely to this class of tripods. The load and check gear was adjusted to supply a conclusive consequence for this dimension of tripod.

The Gitzo GT3543LS carried out extraordinarily nicely within the vibration check. The preliminary shock was considerably transmitted to the digital camera place, however the carbon fiber legs and magnesium elements dampened the vibration rapidly and admirably. This efficiency is among the many better of this class of tripods, notably when factoring within the comparatively thinner legs of this Sequence 3 tripod.

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Gitzo has been the primary (and generally final) phrase in high-end and heavy-duty tripods for a lot of many years, and their improvements and affect are clearly seen in each different tripod of this kind available on the market. The oldsters in Italy have refined their choices to such a level that the entire system this ‘systematic’ tripod falls beneath has change into a regular by way of large tripod expectations, and even nomenclature.

It might not be the tallest, lightest, or most compact, but it surely has only a few flaws and
performs admirably

The GT3543LS, or ‘Gitzo tripod Systematic, sequence 3 lengthy, 4 sections’, stays aggressive inside any such tripod due to its efficiency over many checks and rugged places. Amongst comparable tripods from ProMediaGear, RRS, FLM, and others, it might not be the tallest, lightest, or most compact, but it surely has only a few flaws and performs admirably in each scenario and check. Plus, any Gitzo is normally essentially the most accessible and extensively supported tripod of this kind worldwide, which makes it a secure wager as a stalwart companion for a few years.

What we like

  • Reliable construct high quality
  • Distinctive vibration resistance
  • Units the usual for apex insert and foot sizes
  • Worldwide gross sales and help community
  • Spare components and repairs straightforward to acquire

What we do not like

  • Not compact or simply packable
  • Systematic equipment are costly
  • Fiddly leg angle locks
  • Premium listing value

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