View Full Version : focus rails for stacking??

28-03-2011, 3:40pm
I would like to get in to focus stacking and need some advice on focusing rails and (as per usual) I have ended up confused!!

I have a Manfrotto 804 RC2 tripod and a Nikon D90.
I have done a search on the net and have found the following:

Manfrotto micro positioning plate but reviews say it wobbles and is @ $215

Velbon Super Mag which seemed to have good reviews. It is about $200 as well plus a 12 months aus warranty.

Then there is a 4-way slider for about $40 from Link Delight (huge price difference!!)
I have also looked at the Kirk and Right Stuff sliders but I am not sure that I can afford them:(

Has anyone got any of these rails? This may sound a silly question but do you need more equipment to make these things fit on the tripod??
Any help would be much appreciated:)

28-03-2011, 4:09pm
Hi Sally. As you know, I use the Link Delight 4 way slider. This one has the standard 1/4" Whitworth thread like most tripods use. If the Nikon D90 fits on you tripod then so will the slider.
I would suggest that the Link Delight will do the job quite effectively until you get skilled enough to progress to subjects much smaller than mosquitos.

There is a new slider on the market called Stackshot. It is the holy grail of sliders. http://www.cognisys-inc.com
It is electronic and will automatically do all the stepping for you. But, it comes at a price..... over US$500 for the rail, about US$90 for a cable release to go fro it to the camera, and extra if you want to connect it and control it from Zerene Stacker.
Packaging and shipping is a further US$70 plus Australian duties when it lands in Australia. Wow. It is getting fairly expensive.

28-03-2011, 4:45pm
Thanks John..The Link one sounds perfect as a starter (and the price is right:)). I really didn't want to spend a fortune at this stage being a beginner at just about everything AND not having very much equipment as yet but I am really interested in this focus stacking. I had a look at your flowers and they are wonderful..I like the idea of getting a sharp flower but not having to use F22 etc! That Stackshot sounds brilliant (what did you say about Tatts Lotto:)).
Sometimes there is just too much info on the net and it becomes very confusing!
Thanks so much for all your help:)

28-03-2011, 4:51pm
I have the Velbon and really I have to say that it's pretty dismal.

I now use two of the Manfrotto slide plates that gives me X&Y movement and they're rock solid.

28-03-2011, 6:33pm
Thanks,Jim...don't think I want a dismal one:)

23-06-2011, 3:55pm
Hi All,

I have two Manfrotto 454's that give me X & Y movement as well. They were the only ones that I found to lock down tightly. You can either fit all your gear straight onto them or use quick release plates.