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Thread started 01 Jan 2014 (Wednesday) 21:29
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Ball Head - suggestions

 
Dennisaurous
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Jan 01, 2014 21:29 |  #1

Hello photographers,

I hope everyone is having a great 2014- Happy New Year's to all.

I am new when it comes to tripods and ball heads so I'm seeking suggestions. I searched the forum but would also like to see what others have to say...

I just got a Manfrotto 055CXPRO4 tripod and was wondering what are some suggestions on ball heads. I would like the quick release plate to be compatible (thought not 100% necessary) with my Black Rapids RS-7 strap.

I was thinking of sticking to Manfrotto as a brand - 055 magnesium ball head is a consideration.

My budget is around $300.00. Any inputs / guidance is greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance.


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Tc202
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Jan 01, 2014 21:40 |  #2

I would buy a really right stuff ball head. Many different options. I would recommend the BH-40 LRII. Even though it's 395 it is worth every penny. I own the BH-55 and love it. Buy once and never buy again ;)


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Dennisaurous
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Jan 01, 2014 22:08 |  #3

Tc202 wrote in post #16570562 (external link)
I would buy a really right stuff ball head. Many different options. I would recommend the BH-40 LRII. Even though it's 395 it is worth every penny. I own the BH-55 and love it. Buy once and never buy again ;)

thanks for the suggestion - something to look into and consider.


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Sirrith
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Jan 01, 2014 22:18 |  #4

Don't go Manfrotto for the heads. There are plenty of better choices out there. Don't stick with the Manfrotto release system either. The Arca-Swiss style is better and more popular across brands.

I second the RRS BH-40 recommendation, I really like mine.

Alternatively there's Acratech and Markins, or Induro (cheaper).


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Colorblinded
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Jan 01, 2014 22:34 |  #5

I'm quite fond of the Markins heads.


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peter_n
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Jan 02, 2014 09:06 |  #6

The Manfrotto heads have received mixed reviews on this board, especially their quick release system. As others have said, you'll be much better off in the long term if you get a ballhead with an Arca-Swiss type of quick release. You have a good budget and there are plenty of good heads out there at that price.

Take a look at Photo Clam, Feisol, Sunwayfoto and Benro heads for example. The Sunwayfoto XB-44 (external link) has received good reviews and is within your budget (just), it also comes with a lever release clamp and a panning clamp for about $20 more. The base diameter of this head is 58mm and it has a 44mm ball diameter so it's a mid-size ballhead.


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328iGuy
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Jan 02, 2014 09:23 |  #7

I went from Manfrotto to RRS and will never look back. Far superior in all ways!


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Colt4570
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Jan 02, 2014 14:19 as a reply to  @ 328iGuy's post |  #8

Between 300 and 400 depending on the model, but Acratech has worked well for me.

http://acratech.net/ (external link)


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tvphotog
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Jan 02, 2014 15:08 |  #9

Colorblinded wrote in post #16570669 (external link)
I'm quite fond of the Markins heads.

Will whole-heartedly second this. I have a Q3t on my travel tripod and an Q20 on my Gitzo series 3. My opinion is that Markins is a better, more reliable product than the comparible RRS heads.

However, I would definitely get an RRS lever quick release to put on the ball. I've ordered them from RRS and had them both sent to Markins, where Markins installed them on the two ballheads and shipped the completed items to me.

I also have the RRS monopod head with the same lever QR, and an RRS L bracket on each of my bodies.

Buy from the companies that make the best components to integrate with one another. Your Manfrotto sticks are perfect; match them with companies that make the best heads and the best quick releases. No matter how hard each company tries, they can't be the best at everything.


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Dennisaurous
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Jan 02, 2014 20:21 as a reply to  @ tvphotog's post |  #10

Thanks for all the great input. I'm looking into all the mention manufactures and I have a questions regarding the Really Right Stuff BH-40 LR with B2-40 clamp.

I noticed that this does not include a quick release plate. I look at the their Canon plates and saw that only an L-bracket is available. Is this my only option?


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bpalermini
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Jan 02, 2014 22:10 |  #11

No, they also have universal plates. I have one like THIS (external link). But they have MANY (external link) to choose from.


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DanPics
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Jan 02, 2014 23:04 |  #12

I use Benro and am very happy. Much more reasonable than the Really Right Stuff. I use the big older style Benro with a 500 F4.




  
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afoton
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Jan 03, 2014 02:21 |  #13

tvphotog wrote in post #16572307 (external link)
Will whole-heartedly second this. I have a Q3t on my travel tripod and an Q20 on my Gitzo series 3. My opinion is that Markins is a better, more reliable product than the comparible RRS heads.

However, I would definitely get an RRS lever quick release to put on the ball. I've ordered them from RRS and had them both sent to Markins, where Markins installed them on the two ballheads and shipped the completed items to me.

I have both a RRS BH-40 and a Markins Q3T. As long as the Q3T is working, I prefer that one. But my Q3T is not working at all in the cold, colder than about -5°C. I have used my BH-40 down to about -37°C without any issue. So in the winter, I only use the BH-40.

When it comes to the clamp, I prefer the Markins screw clamp over the all the RRS clamps, so i will never replace the clamp on my Q3T ;) But this is just about personal preferences. I have both a lever release clamp on the BH-40, but I don't like that one.




  
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Charlie
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Jan 03, 2014 02:38 |  #14

based on your gear, a horusbennu lx-5 should easily do the job:

http://www.ebay.com …ain_0&hash=item​3cbcef1138 (external link)

I cant say I understand the really high end setups, especially since this $80 setup gets me really stable shots. Has fine tuning like advance heads as well.


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Lowner
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Jan 03, 2014 03:05 |  #15

Colorblinded wrote in post #16570669 (external link)
I'm quite fond of the Markins heads.

Me too, I use the M10 with an RRS quick release Arca Swiss clamp. I found the Manfrotto head suffered badly from droop and its totally cured with the Markins.


Richard

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Ball Head - suggestions
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