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FORUMS General Gear Talk Tripods, Monopods & Other Camera Support
Thread started 13 Jan 2018 (Saturday) 18:44
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Tripod Head Question

 
ruaslacker2
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Jan 13, 2018 18:44 |  #1

What type / style of head other than a gimbal Head should I use for my 150-600 lens ?


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Snydremark
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Jan 13, 2018 20:15 |  #2

ruaslacker2 wrote in post #18540335 (external link)
What type / style of head other than a gimbal Head should I use for my 150-600 lens ?

Quick n dirty answer; go find an Arca-Swiss compatible ball head in your price range, with the knob release, and have fun. They are made in all price ranges and unless you're using in really demanding circumstances, even the lower end ones should do reasonably well.

The one brand I'd stay away from is Manfrotto. Their ballheads are made slightly out of round and have a tendency to droop after you make your adjustments.

Figure out how much your lens + camera weigh, double that and then check the weight rating of the unit you are looking at to make sure it's equal or greater.

For greater adjustability, make sure the unit has a secondary tension adjust to allow you to fine tune the tension so that you can use a bit of effort to move and aim, but hold the camera where you left it when you let go.


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SailingAway
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Jan 14, 2018 12:05 |  #3

I’m using a Wimberley Sidekick on my 150-600, and like it very much for tracking action. It attaches to a conventional Arca-Swiss ballhead, I don’t need to carry a second rig. The size match seems about right as well. Unclamp it and throw it in the bag... Fast and easy.

It’s worth considering what you’re shooting. Action is easier with a gimbal, or, a semi-gimbal like the Sidekick.


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johnf3f
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Wales
Jan 14, 2018 15:24 |  #4

Why not a Gimbal?

Naturally it depends on your personal requirements but I can't think of a better type of head for this sort of lens - but that is only me.


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CyberDyneSystems
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Jan 14, 2018 16:02 |  #5

SailingAway wrote in post #18540670 (external link)
I’m using a Wimberley Sidekick on my 150-600, and like it very much for tracking action. It attaches to a conventional Arca-Swiss ballhead, I don’t need to carry a second rig. The size match seems about right as well. Unclamp it and throw it in the bag... Fast and easy.

It’s worth considering what you’re shooting. Action is easier with a gimbal, or, a semi-gimbal like the Sidekick.


The advantage here is that with the right ballhead, you get a head for all uses, and add the sidekick when you want to use a Gimbal with your long lens.

Very good ballheads to use with Sidekick include Markins, Sirui K30/K40, RRS BH55, etc.


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RPCrowe
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Jan 18, 2018 21:38 |  #6

Actually while ball heads and gimbal heads are great, if you are concentrating on moving subjects a decent fluid dampened pan tilt head is great.
They are not all that good for non-moving subjects but are great for cars, birds and some sports. They were originally built for cinema and video shooting.
Best of all they can be had at relatively low prices because of less demand.
https://www.ebay.com ...d-Heads/30095/bn_5511306​7 (external link)


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SailingAway
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Jan 18, 2018 22:01 |  #7

Adding it up in my head it seems a little excessive, but I currently have 6 (!) video style heads and 2 still ball heads in the fleet. I did give one away last year! Really do need to thin it out a bit. I’m a video guy who rediscovered still photography, but that’s another story.

A video head *is* great for tracking, like RPCrowe said. Being a pan/tilt head, it does need to be leveled, or your horizon goes off as you track. Commonly in video, that’s done with a half-ball and bowl, sometimes called a claw-ball. The smaller size in general use is a bowl of 75mm in diameter, more than adequate for any but the largest lenses.

But those are some big heads! Even the small ones with that leveling system will weigh at least 3 or 4 pounds. That’s a lot for what most people want to carry for a field tripod.

There are smaller fluid-effect pan/tilt heads. I bought a used Manfrotto 128 and stuck a cheap Arca-Swiss clamp on it to use under a Canon 70D for video. But those don’t have a leveling system - you need to level the legs. This is probably the most popular head for birders with spotting scopes.

My most expensive video head comes with 3 settings for pan drag, 3 settings for tilt drag, and 10 steps of adjustable counterbalance. Video cameras tend to be much more top-heavy than still cams, so dialing in counterbalance is real handy.

OK, brief summary: watch the weight of any video head you’re considering, think about leveling, and, do avoid fixed counterbalance springs. They will always be the wrong amount, in my experience.

YMMV!


From the upper left corner of the U.S.
Photos, Video & Pano r us.
College and workshop instructor in video and audio.
70D, Sigma 8mm, Tokina f2.8 11-16, Canon EF-S f2.8 17-55, Sigma f2.8 50-150 EX OS, Tamron 150-600VC. Gigapan Epic Pro, Nodal Ninja 5 & R10.

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Tripod Head Question
FORUMS General Gear Talk Tripods, Monopods & Other Camera Support


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