Test Results

The performance of the FLM Berlin is nothing short of exceptional.  The stiffness is the is up there with the with the best available tripods.  The pitch stiffness is not quite as high as we would expect given the yaw stiffness.  Normally the pitch stiffness is higher by roughly a factor of 3.  I suspect that the pitch stiffness is slightly lower than expected in this case due to the cork pad on the top plate.  The cork is slightly softer than what we typically see on the top plate of most tripods.  This creates a small amount of give, reducing the pitch stiffness.  This is fairly minor though, and there is plenty of pitch stiffness available.  The damping is also impressive, the pitch damping particularly so.  Again I attribute this to the cork pad on the top plate.

Test Results

Yaw Stiffness1995 +/- 3 Nm/rad
Yaw Damping0.543 +/- 0.054 Js/rad
Pitch Stiffness4622 +/- 17 Nm/rad
Pitch Damping1.44 +/- 0.14 Js/rad

The stiffness and damping data are the averages of 10 trials for each measurement.  The reported error is the standard error, except in the case of the damping data. I have set the error in the damping at 10% as the standard error metric does not appropriately capture the error in fitting to the data.  All of the reported specifications are measured, with the exception of the weight rating. The tripod is measured at full height, with the center column (if applicable) down.

Recommended Gear Limit

The exact gear limit is highly dependent on the external conditions such as wind, and technique, such as the use of a cable release.  Under perfectly still conditions using perfect technique, sharp images can be obtained using any tripod

Example Test Data

The following data is example raw data from the stiffness and damping measurements.  The relevant information with regards to the tripod performance is entirely contained within the stiffness and damping figures presented above.  The plots below are solely present so that the tested stiffness and damping figures are believed. Each plot and the corresponding Fourier frequency space plot correspond to one of the ten trials done on each axis to obtain the test results.  For a more in depth discussion on the meaning of these graphs, see the methodology section and the understanding the test results page.

Beautiful data set here.  Excellent fit gives us good confidence in the results.

A lot of damping in the pitch direction, which always makes the measurements more difficult.  The data here is very clear though, and we have a good measurement.