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Old February 5th, 2008, 07:06 PM   #1
New Boot
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: London UK
Posts: 7
Head properties.

I think I made a heavy mistake when buying a heavy fluid head as I rarely do pans or tilts and most of the shots are with the head locked.

What I found is important is, when focussing on a distant small object, there should be little movement in the image when the head is locked.

This varies enormously between heads, sometimes two framings, and should be included in head assessment.

I realise that if the rig is balanced there should be no need even to lock the head but this is hard to do when changing the focal length on a big lens with an extending focus ring.

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Old February 5th, 2008, 08:21 PM   #2
Inner Circle
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Fairfield, Dunedin, New Zealand
Posts: 3,627
Images: 18
Hi Anthony..................

I think you'll find, Anthony, that one of the most likely areas for movement of the camera with any rig is the tripod itself.

There really isn't much room for manouvre with a modern ball head as far as movement goes.

If something's moving, it's most probably the tripod.

Just my experience.


PS. For a bit more information on tripods and their operation, you may want to check this thread out.


Last edited by Chris Soucy; February 5th, 2008 at 08:30 PM. Reason: 'Cos I can!
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Old February 6th, 2008, 06:58 AM   #3
New Boot
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: London UK
Posts: 7
Head properties explained.

What I was trying to get across was that when you frame a distant bird, say,
and lock the head then let go of the pan-handle to avoid "cardiac footage" the ****ing thing drops sometimes 2 frames or more so you have to realign the shot.

With a stiff tripod this should not happen unless there is movement in the head itself.
If, as I did, you bolt the head to an immovable base and apply a load to the head, usually vertically, some heads move even though they are locked.

In my Cartoni example tightening the base reduced this to near nil and I will be surprised if other heads do not show a similar irritating fault.

My other point was that an expensive and heavy fluid head is in fact unecessary unless you need to pan or tilt whilst filming or recording.

Incidentally birders with tripods viewing shore birds a long way away, invariably, in my experience, in wind, , and usually rain, really suffer from image micromovement because they usually have cheap light tripods. They usualy keep their hand on the scope to minimise this.

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