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by miker on Tue Mar 06, 2018 1:04 pm
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[font=verdana, sans-serif]Here's a shot of the equipment I've assembled to do panos.  I have a device to level the tripod on the bottom, next an indexed pano head which works great, a RRS BH30 balll head,[/font][font=verdana, sans-serif] a nodal rail[/font][font=verdana, sans-serif] and attached to that is my camera.  The problem is it's really shaky and not stable at all.  Each item is useful.  What equipment do you use to shoot panos?  All of this stuff?  I just receive the tripod leveling head today and I guess I could return it but it would be very handy for leveling the tripod.  My tripod is also kind of light duty for mirrorless cameras.  Your opinion and advice would be greatly appreciated. [/font]
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by E.J. Peiker on Tue Mar 06, 2018 2:47 pm
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I'd get rid of everything except the BH-30 and the nodal slider.  then replace the mounting head on the BH-30 with a panorama clamp.  You don't need that thing that locks out the angles at all - just look through the viewfinder or the rear LCD and watch the progression as you pan so that the next shot is always when the center of the previous shot hits the edge of the frame.  Doing this basically cuts the height of your stack down to simply the ballhead (with new panorama clamp) and the slider.
 

by Anthony Medici on Tue Mar 06, 2018 3:04 pm
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From the setup you have above, the BH-30 is an extra piece and should be removed.

The simplest single row panning setup is a level tripod (or tripod with leveling base), a pano head or clamp that is also level, the nodal rail and camera.

The next step higher is to add an L-Bracket for the camera so that you can do vertical images instead of horizontal ones.

What you added, and technically doesn't work, is the ball head, which I assume you are using to point the camera so that it is not level during the pan. Generally, this does not work since the resulting images could be angled to one another making it impossible to stitch. A simple way to fix it so that you can point the camera in a direction other than keeping it leveled, is to add a monopod head instead of the ballhead where the ballhead is shown so that the movement can only be perpendicular to the panning direction. This isn't the best approach but it does the job. The best approach is to add an L-Bracket with a panning clamp which gives you another panning direction perpendicular to the original base direction. (search for Really Right Stuff and see how their full panning setup is)

The problem with all that equipment is that it is heavy which means taking less lenses or other equipment with you when you are planning to do this.


In review... Start with a level tripod or leveling base. Then the panning clamp. Then an L-Bracket with a panning clamp on one of the part of the L. Then the Nodal Rail. Then an L-Bracket on the camera so that you can take horizontal or vertical images. (The last part isn't needed if you always take them vertically.)

If you don't use the L-Bracket with panning clamp then you need a monopod head to adjust the direction of the camera from level. That would require an L-Bracket on the camera to take vertical images.

And then remove the monopod head if you're willing to only shoot level pano's. If you shoot wide enough to cover what you want, you then crop the image in post to adjust up or down.
Tony
 

by Anthony Medici on Tue Mar 06, 2018 3:06 pm
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EJ's will work though in practice you need to watch the angle that the panning clamp is at since the images are a straight line revolving around the direction the top of the ball head is at. :)
Tony
 

by SantaFeJoe on Tue Mar 06, 2018 3:15 pm
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Not trying to be a wise guy, but get a solid, decent quality tripod as your base and then keep things low to the top of the tripod. With a weak tripod and all those joints/connections, you will never maintain stability. That’s also true even with a solid tripod. And don’t use a center column.

Joe
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by E.J. Peiker on Tue Mar 06, 2018 3:49 pm
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Anthony Medici wrote:
EJ's will work though in practice you need to watch the angle that the panning clamp is at since the images are a straight line revolving around the direction the top of the ball head is at. :)

The panorama clamp has a bubble level in it so that can easily level out the top.  But either of our methods will be much better than what is shown.
 

by E.J. Peiker on Tue Mar 06, 2018 3:51 pm
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SantaFeJoe wrote:
Not trying to be a wise guy, but get a solid, decent quality tripod as your base and then keep things low to the top of the tripod. With a weak tripod and all those joints/connections, you will never maintain stability. That’s also true even with a solid tripod. And don’t use a center column.

Joe


If it's the tripod I think it is, the Redged TSC-428, that is a very good travel tripod capable of easily being a stable platform for the gear shown and in fact something significantly more substantial.
 

by miker on Tue Mar 06, 2018 4:41 pm
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It's an RTA 432 and seems quite stable and I think plenty good for mirrorless. I very rarely use the center column, only if I have to shoot over something.
 

by E.J. Peiker on Tue Mar 06, 2018 4:52 pm
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miker wrote:
It's an RTA 432 and seems quite stable and I think plenty good for mirrorless.  I very rarely use the center column, only if I have to shoot over something.

Yeah, that tripod is solid, no issues there.
 

by SantaFeJoe on Tue Mar 06, 2018 4:53 pm
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E.J. Peiker wrote:
SantaFeJoe wrote:
Not trying to be a wise guy, but get a solid, decent quality tripod as your base and then keep things low to the top of the tripod. With a weak tripod and all those joints/connections, you will never maintain stability. That’s also true even with a solid tripod. And don’t use a center column.

Joe


If it's the tripod I think it is, the Redged TSC-428, that is a very good travel tripod capable of easily being a stable platform for the gear shown and in fact something significantly more substantial.


I'm only going by what he said about his tripod being kind of light for a mirrorless camera (in original post) unlike what he states in his last post. My point is that there are a minimum of 6 connections (probably more) between pieces and that makes for lots of looseness. A simpler rig would be sturdier. It looks about 9" tall above the center column and even more above the top of the legs. That’s pretty much what you said in your first reply, cut down the stack.

Joe
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by SantaFeJoe on Tue Mar 06, 2018 6:24 pm
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Regarding other comments above, a good, but complicated reference can be found here.

Joe
Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist.  -Pablo Picasso
 

by balazs on Fri Mar 09, 2018 8:25 am
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I think you need the pano rotator only for astro panos, where you can not see a thing trough the viewfinder. As others pointed out, your week point is the head, where if you shoot a not straight (level) panorama, or a multi row panorama, the ballhead will too easily ruin the leveling. The monopod head (or a pan and tilt head but pan is redundant in this setup) is a good suggestion IMHO. I solved the problem by switching to a Uniqball head, which act as a pan and tilt head in this setup.
 

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