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Tripod Heads: 3 Way Or Ball?  
User currently offlineAstro777lover From United States of America, joined Nov 2008, 212 posts, RR: 1
Posted (5 years 4 weeks 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 4358 times:

I am going to get a manfrotto tripod soon and I want to get a good head for some money.

I am looking at the 3 way pan head and a ball head. Would do you guys think would be the best choice? I've read good things about both so i am not sure what to do.

Thanks,
-Austin


Canon EOS 450D, Canon 70-200L 2.8 IS USM, Canon 580EX II
13 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineSpeedbird2025 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 1, posted (5 years 4 weeks 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 4345 times:

Hi Austin..

I personally prefer a three way pan head.. Makes it very easy to make quick adjustments.

Not too sure what city in FL you are in, but my advice is go to a good camera store and mess around with the different tripod heads. You will know what is comfortable for you.

I know in Houston we have a few camera stores that have most of the good tripod heads on display.

--Nate


User currently offlineAstro777lover From United States of America, joined Nov 2008, 212 posts, RR: 1
Reply 2, posted (5 years 4 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 4326 times:



Quoting Speedbird2025 (Reply 1):

Yea we used to have a camera store right here in the mall but it closed down so the closest one is like a 30 minute drive. I have a slik tripod now with a 2 way pan head but it was like 30 dollars so i have an idea what it is like. I probobly will go to a camera store soon cause i really want to get one soon.


Thanks,
Austin

P.S. I live right outside of orlando



Canon EOS 450D, Canon 70-200L 2.8 IS USM, Canon 580EX II
User currently offlineJRadier From Netherlands, joined Sep 2004, 4725 posts, RR: 50
Reply 3, posted (5 years 4 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 4324 times:



Quoting Astro777lover (Thread starter):
I am going to get a manfrotto tripod soon and I want to get a good head for some money.

The first question is what are you going to do with it (what kind of shots)?



For once you have tasted flight you will walk the earth with your eyes turned skywards, for there you have been and ther
User currently offlineAstro777lover From United States of America, joined Nov 2008, 212 posts, RR: 1
Reply 4, posted (5 years 4 weeks 1 day 8 hours ago) and read 4316 times:



Quoting JRadier (Reply 3):
The first question is what are you going to do with it (what kind of shots)?

Pretty much everything, aviation, night photos, landscape, wildlife, macro.



Canon EOS 450D, Canon 70-200L 2.8 IS USM, Canon 580EX II
User currently offlineBertoli From Brazil, joined Jan 2006, 4 posts, RR: 0
Reply 5, posted (5 years 4 weeks 1 day 8 hours ago) and read 4309 times:

Hi,

It depends on what you're planning to do. Ball heads are less bulky and quicker to set up than pan & tilt heads , but are less precise on adjustments. If you need precision adjustments (like adjust precisely a horizon on a photo) , pan & tilt is the right one for you. If you look for a compact head and quicker to adjust, go for a ball head.
I personally have chosen a 484RC2 for my setup and I'm very satisfied with that.

Cheers.


User currently offlineJRadier From Netherlands, joined Sep 2004, 4725 posts, RR: 50
Reply 6, posted (5 years 4 weeks 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 4304 times:



Quoting Astro777lover (Reply 4):

Pretty much everything, aviation, night photos, landscape, wildlife, macro.

that's a tough one....

I got all 3, ballhead (mainly for on the monopod or quick-action shots), a 3-way (not really used anymore) and a geared 3-way which absolutely rocks for aviation night shots as you can be extremely precise in adjusting the head.



For once you have tasted flight you will walk the earth with your eyes turned skywards, for there you have been and ther
User currently offlineAstro777lover From United States of America, joined Nov 2008, 212 posts, RR: 1
Reply 7, posted (5 years 4 weeks 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 4273 times:



Quoting JRadier (Reply 6):
I got all 3, ballhead (mainly for on the monopod or quick-action shots), a 3-way (not really used anymore) and a geared 3-way which absolutely rocks for aviation night shots as you can be extremely precise in adjusting the head

Yea i heard the geared head is great for macro and like you said night shots, well i heard they were also expensive.

Quoting Bertoli (Reply 5):

I will probably go with the 3 way pan head for now and if i save more money i can get a ball head to have both.



Canon EOS 450D, Canon 70-200L 2.8 IS USM, Canon 580EX II
User currently offlineCpd From Australia, joined Jun 2008, 4881 posts, RR: 37
Reply 8, posted (5 years 4 weeks 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 4271 times:

3 way is the better bet for aviation photography, due to the precision with which you can set up the head for things like panning.

I have Manfrotto 055XPROB and 808RC4 combination.


User currently offlineAstro777lover From United States of America, joined Nov 2008, 212 posts, RR: 1
Reply 9, posted (5 years 4 weeks 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 4269 times:

I was thinking of this combination:

Manfrotto 055XWNB + Manfrotto 804RC2 (3 way pan)



Canon EOS 450D, Canon 70-200L 2.8 IS USM, Canon 580EX II
User currently offlineHias From Germany, joined Sep 2000, 349 posts, RR: 12
Reply 10, posted (5 years 3 weeks 4 days 16 hours ago) and read 4162 times:

Quoting Cpd (Reply 8):

I have to agree to Cpd. I have almost the same tripod (055 PROB) with the same head and its just great for night shots, especially with heavy weight lenses.

Regards

Mathias

[Edited 2009-12-01 04:40:50 by hias]

User currently offlineDvincent From United States of America, joined Jan 2007, 1753 posts, RR: 10
Reply 11, posted (5 years 3 weeks 4 days 15 hours ago) and read 4148 times:
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Keep in mind that a good ball head with a pan axis lock (like the 488RC2) will give you a single pan adjustment when you need it and be overall faster to use because to adjust a ballhead you just need one control to adjust. Three way heads are better for video, IME.


From the Mind of Minolta
User currently offlineWhisperjet From Germany, joined Nov 2007, 571 posts, RR: 8
Reply 12, posted (5 years 3 weeks 4 days 12 hours ago) and read 4134 times:
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Quoting Dvincent (Reply 11):
Keep in mind that a good ball head with a pan axis lock (like the 488RC2) will give you a single pan adjustment when you need it and be overall faster to use because to adjust a ballhead you just need one control to adjust.

Good point! I mainly take nightshots of planes right after pushback which makes a very short time frame of ~ 90 seconds. The faster I have the head adjusted the more shots I can take.

I don't think precision is very important for aviation photography.

Stefan



Nobody is perfect - not even a perfect fool.
User currently offlineAstro777lover From United States of America, joined Nov 2008, 212 posts, RR: 1
Reply 13, posted (5 years 3 weeks 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 4089 times:

I think i will get the 3 way pan because i have used it before and am used to it, and if i ever find a camera shop near me i can go in and try a ball head or find someone that has one i could try out.

Austin



Canon EOS 450D, Canon 70-200L 2.8 IS USM, Canon 580EX II
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