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Levelling head

Discussion in 'Other Cool Gear, Camera Bags, Camera Straps' started by Gilles, Aug 24, 2005.

  1. Use to adjust the angle you take your picture by +/- 5 degrees.

  2. PGB


    Jan 25, 2005
    This looks interesting. How is the operation of it. Is it cumbersome to do in the field? Do you find it was a worthwhile purchase?

  3. It looks like a pretty nice piece of gear. My problem is I rarely take time to level my tripod and pretty much do it by eyeball. Perhaps if I were doing Pano's this would be worthwhile for me. Thanks for sharing.
  4. I bought it because with a big load on the ball head it's very difficult to lock the head exactly where i want, it always slip about 1 or 2 degrees, with the micrometric screws you can adjust it exactly where you want. Those are mostly used by peoples who do architectural photography.
  5. papa85

    papa85 Guest

    Here is what I use.

    Here is what I use
    RRS B55 Ballhead, Gitzo 1321 Leveling head, Gitzo 1325 CF tripod.


    There is also a Sidekick mounted on the ballhead. It is a sweet setup. :wink: Serves me well. :eek: 
    The leveling head is ulta quick to level. On the last photo you will see a short rod sticking down in the center of the tripod, with one hand you losen it and level to the bubble then tighten. Takes 5 sec. to adjust and of course it is ultra solid, it's a Gitzo. :smile:
  6. Tony, how good is the B55, when you lock the camera/lens on it does it stay where you want it or do you have to use the levelling plate to make fine adjustment?
  7. papa85

    papa85 Guest

    :Money: Solid
    Hi Gilles
    I can tell you this, that when I use the B55 with my D2H and 300mm 2.8, it stay precisely where I want it with no fine adjustments.The lens weighs 5lbs. I have had other ball heads and none can compare to the B55. It is a precision piece of equipment.( like everything else that RRS makes) As you know , to have a solid unit it take more then a good head, it is the total package. The foundation is the secret, That is why I chose the Gitzo 1325. :smile: :smile: I just got my macro lens and i will be putting it thru a test with micro fine tuning. I would have to say that I would be very surprised if it would need any fine tuning.
    It has a large ball so there is a larger surface that makes for a strong lockup.
    Another feature of the Ball head is that is is a low profile head, it is closer to the tripod that make for a more solid connection. Hope this helps . It is not cheap ,but I will never need another Ballhead. :smile:
  8. Tony do you have an L shape plate that permit to use the camera horizontaly/vertically that would increase a lot the stability than to take the camera and lens to the side of the ballhead?
  9. papa85

    papa85 Guest

    Hi Gilles,
    Yes I do. The only way to fly. It is of course a RRS L bracket. Also use the RRS quick release clamps with the Wimberly Sidekick. :smile: :Whistle: :eek: 
  10. Robin Casady

    Robin Casady

    Aug 13, 2005
    I bought a Manfrotto 3416 Leveling Base that looks just like yours, but yours seems to be labeled 338. Mine was very heavy, and the adjustment was extremely stiff. It didn't really need the locking nuts. I took it apart, cleaned up the threads, lubed it with a teflon oil, and it was still too stiff for comfort. My intention was to use it for panorama leveling.

    I gave up on it and got the Gitzo G1321 Level Base for a G-1325 tripod. The 1321 is much faster and easier to use.

    I use a Markins M20 ball head. I had an Arca-Swiss B1 (actully still have and need to sell it). The M20 is lighter weight than the B1 and just as secure. I have not trouble with precise adjustments.
  11. Robin,

    I hate to hijack the thread from the topic of levelling heads, but I am considering getting the Gitzo 1325 with a Markins M20 as well. Is a column (eg. 1327 instead of 1325) a good idea? And what about the Markins plate TB30? Does it work, or is it beneficial with the 1325 (I know it does with 1327) or is it not necessary because the G1325 already includes a plate? Also, does the G1325 include a hook, or is it only included as part of a column (eg G1318)? As you can tell, I am a bit confused... :confused:  :rolleyes:  :smile:

    Tony, your setup looks really good. I take it that you guys highly recommend the levelling plate G1321, huh? Man, that setup ends up costing as much as a pro lens, but I really believe in buying right, buying once! :tongue:
  12. Robin that's exactly the same plate #338 Canada and #3416 USA, I prefer that it be stiff, once you adjust it don't move at all, i don't even bother to use the locks.
  13. papa85

    papa85 Guest

    Hi Philippe,

    Phillippe, How you doing? :smile: I have tried 3 different setups in the past. you are right. do it right the first time and you will be money ahead. :Money: I was shooting at the Ding Darling preserve in Florida (on vacation) and ran across a group of professional bird shooters and they all were using the same setup. that is why I chose to buy the same. it has been a very solid comfortable and lasting unit. My theory is, :Wink: look at what the big guys are using and if you can afford it do the same. You will not be unhappy with the setup. But a word to the wise It will turn heads, keep an eye on your unit. :Guns: The 1325 comes with just a flat plate , the 1321 comes with the short twist handle no hook. but I was always able to wrap my camera bags strap around the neck of the tripod to add center weight. I find with this setup it almost eliminates the need to do so... Hope this helps in your decision.
    PS Check out my post on Leveling heads for photos
    have a great day Phillippe :biggrin: :smile: :eek: 
  14. jb007

    jb007 Guest

    Gitzo comments - aimed at Philippe

    Philippe, (G for Gitzo) G1327 has a different centre arrangement to the G1325, so they are not fully interchangable, also the G1325 is very high indeed can't imagine needing a centre column for height. So, gentle suggestion consider the G1325 preferably with the G1321 too if you do landscapes, architecture, or other pics where a level horizon etc. is useful; for birding type shots you may not need the G1321, but apart from the weight, it doesn't hurt to have it. My 2p. Oh, have you d/l the PDF files from Gitzo & RRS? They help visualise what you need.
  15. Thank you for that message! And to Tony too. I made my decision and ordered the Gitzo 1325, the G1321 levelling head, the Markins M20L ball-head and some plates from Kirk. I really believe in buying everything correctly, once... and avoid the never-ending upgrade cycle.

    Hopefully, everything will come in by the week-end. I am as giddy as if I bought another pro-lens... but that's just fitting, because it did cost just as much! Ouch... :eek:  :wink:

    Thanks again. This forum rocks! :smile: :biggrin:
  16. papa85

    papa85 Guest

    Philippe, :smile:
    You won't regret it. Good choice. Let me know how you like it. :biggrin:
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