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Thread: Tripods : Panoramic heads

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    Administrator ricktas's Avatar
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    Tripods : Panoramic heads

    I take quite a few panoramic photos and up till now have just used either hand held and swivel from the hips, or a standard 3 way tripod head. Wondering if anyone has a 'proper' panoramic head, that suits Manfrotto tripods, and what model, what can you tell me about it, good, bad, etc
    "It is one thing to make a picture of what a person looks like, it is another thing to make a portrait of who they are" - Paul Caponigro

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    Hi Rick, This might help, You need a head with "Nodal Point Rotation" , Anyway Just Google that and it might help, You can by the rig, or make it very easily , I'm told , See if this works http://www.potd.com.au/forum/viewtopic.php?f=27&t=2991
    Last edited by William; 19-11-2010 at 2:03pm. Reason: Link did'nt work
    Canon : 30D, and sometimes the 5D mkIII , Sigma 10-20, 50mm 1.8, Canon 24-105 f4 L , On loan Sigma 120-400 DG and Canon 17 - 40 f4 L , Cokin Filters




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    Rick the Really Right Stuff site has a good explanation of their rails and pano setups. I use a Manfrotto (055MF3) and RRS setup.
    DM
    Nikon, Really Right Stuff, Gitzo, Manfrotto, Mac
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    thanks Guys! Not sure if I am going to get one, but worth looking into. I think my pano's are pretty good now, but if I can improve them by ensuring nodal panning, it can only be a good thing.

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    I'm looking into it too, Manfrotto have some good stuff. They all picture DSLRs huns sideways though, and as the H2 ia square format how's that going to make a difference? There is a lot to look into.
    Odille

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    Haven't got a Manfrotto (I've got a Vanguard) and to be honest I don't achieve any better results than just using a 3 way. The only benefit I see is being able to get your overlaps exact with each photo, but with a good eye you can achieve that anyway. In short, wished I had of saved my money.

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    Ausphotography Regular bobt's Avatar
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    Once upon a time I would have thought it a good idea. These days the software is so good that it's pretty easy to get good panos without even trying that hard!

    I have created panos from hand-held shots that weren't even taken with a pano in mind, yet the software plucked them out and stitched them without any real intervention by me.

    There are lots of other things which will return a greater reward than a pano head (IMHO of course).

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    I use a Manfrotto 405 geared tripod head,I chose the 405 because of the precision control it provides which is extremely useful for QTVR and panoramic applications. It has no less than three spirit levels on it and in addition to the ones already on my Manfrotto 028 tripod, so if anything is even slightly off kilter i'll be promptly informed. I'll admit for 35mm DSLR cameras the smaller 405 would me more appropriate but I also work with 4X5 and 8X10 format view cameras, so the extra load capacity isn't wasted.

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    I have a panosarus http://gregwired.com/pano/Pano.htm, I only do single row panos and it's vastly overkill for that.... but cheap. It's downfall is it's bulky and it adds weight. In hindsight I wish I had gotten a RRS "Pano Elements Package: For single row" which was about 3 times the cost, half the functionality but way more portable.

    The hardest bit is getting the entrance pupil right, but it only is an issue if there is both something in the foreground and the background. Panos where everything is moderately distant can be shot handheld (because the software is pretty damned amazing). In fact my favourite panos were all done handheld using a Canon Power shot (side note panosonic point and shoots suck for it because you can't lock down enough settings)
    Sean O'Brien
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    I made my own Rick.

    I put a post on it somewhere on here.Cant remember where.

    Derek
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    "I'll admit for 35mm DSLR cameras the smaller 405 would me more appropriate..."

    quick correction here, I meant the Manfrotto 410 - which is more compact than the 405 which is a brick-and-a-half. Although, I recently bought another 405 for my heavy weight gitzo tripod which I am using for my medium format super telephoto lenses.

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    Morning folks, I`ve been playing with panoramic photography for some time and arrived at the following conclusions:
    1 if you are taking a pano of a landscape with no foreground detail you don`t need a pano head........probably don`t even need a tripod.
    2 if your subject has foreground features, fences or paths or any straight lines that are close to the camera you do need a good tripod and a panohead.


    This was taken with a tripod but no special head. notice lines don`t match up


    This was taken with my homemade pano head, everything seems to line up.
    Photo`s like this must have good pano head to cancel the parallax error.

    How ever having said this all of the commercial heads I`ve looked at are a blatant rip off.

    The pictures were taken with a head that I knocked up out some scrap Aluminium angle, about $5.00 dollars worth of screws and about 30 minutes of spare time. There are a number web pages that tell you all you need to know:

    http://archive.bigben.id.au/tutorial...oto/nodal.html

    http://wiki.panotools.org/Entrance_Pupil_Database

    These are a couple of good ones to start with.

    Simmo
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    Pentax K20d,Pentax DA 16-45 ED-AL,Pentax DA L 55-300, Sigma DC18-200,Sigma 150-500

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    I really dont think they are necessary, even with a close forground. you will prob find that the nodal point of your lens is only about an inch from the sensor plane anyway. I use an L bracket to centre the camera in vertical orientation and thats it, i have never had stiching problems with numerous programs.
    Dan
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    Thanks everyone

    Quote Originally Posted by dantheman View Post
    I really dont think they are necessary, even with a close forground. you will prob find that the nodal point of your lens is only about an inch from the sensor plane anyway. I use an L bracket to centre the camera in vertical orientation and thats it, i have never had stiching problems with numerous programs.
    Dan
    I agree and that is what I do now, just thought it worthwhile discussing the use of a dedicated pano head.

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