Kukkudrill From Malta, joined Dec 2004, 1123 posts, RR: 4 Posted (10 years 10 months 4 weeks 1 day 12 hours ago) and read 2101 times:
I'm looking to replace my tripod and I'm considering a Manfrotto with a separate head. My question is: is a ball or a 3-way head best for aviation photography? The particular situation I have in mind is where you need to pan left to right and tilt up and down to get different subjects from the same spot, while remaining level with the horizon. Ball heads are cheaper and seem to offer greater ease of movement, but would it mean having to realign with the horizon every time you tilt or pan? Or is this something that sounds more of a problem in theory than in practice? Grateful for advice.
Make the most of the available light ... a lesson of photography that applies to life
Wietse From Netherlands, joined Oct 2001, 3809 posts, RR: 53
Reply 1, posted (10 years 10 months 4 weeks 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 2075 times:
If you require one of the three axles to remain fixed, you can't use a ball head. If you release the ball head, it will go all around the axles. In this instance you can use a 141 or 029 Manfrotto head, lock the axles apart from the rotating (horizontal axle) and you have a horizontal panning device.
Cschleic From United States of America, joined Feb 2002, 1418 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (10 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 days 8 hours ago) and read 2032 times:
Some ball heads allow from swiveling the entire unit without relasing the ball head. The Kirk ball head does that, but it's not cheap...$300+. But with any tripod head, the tripod itself has to be level, otherwise panning won't be level with the ground. Some tripods have levels in them, or you can get a small plastic spirit level that fits into the camera's flash hot shoe. Or just set a small string level on the tripod.