Buying a tripod. 055XproB. Looking at heads

Discussion in 'Photography Equipment & Products' started by CxThree, Apr 18, 2009.

  1. CxThree

    CxThree TPF Noob!

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    Hi,

    My wife is buying me a set of 055XProB tripod legs for my birthday. I am trying to decide on a head. I am leaning toward the ball head. Specifically, I see good reviews on the 488RC2.

    In my research, I have hit the following unanswered questions.

    1) What is the difference in the 488RC2 and 488RC4?
    2) It seems that the 488 series is a 468 with a pan lock?
    3) Any major advantage of ball heads to 3-ways? Just personal taste?
    4) I also like the 322RC2, but it's a bit more expensive. Worth it?

    Any feedback is appreciated here.


    BTW. I chose the 055xPROB because of it's reviews, name brand, and height. I am 6'3".
     
  2. CxThree

    CxThree TPF Noob!

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    OK. After further research, I have found the answer to question #1. The RC4 is larger and has a level built into it. Some people say it's fine on a 40D, and others say its too large. It seems most people stick with the RC2.

    I guess that also adds some light to question #3 above. I am guessing the 3 way heads are easier to level?
     
  3. Garbz

    Garbz No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    1. The difference says it's all in the headplate. I don't think anything can be too large. I have a 488RC0 on my 055ProB (non X) legs, and it's huge, but that hasn't caused any problems at all with any of my cameras.

    2. Pretty much yes, the panlock is great too.

    3. No advantages, different purposes. The 3 way allows you to adjust things quickly on the fly, there's only one latch that unlocks all degrees of freedom. (well 2 with the panlock). But that said they are no good for fiddly work. If you're into landscapes, perfectly straight horizons and taking your time to get the framing perfect then a 3-way head is for you. I'm about to buy a second smaller lighter tripod with a 3-way head on it just for landscapes and hiking.

    4. Was looking at it, but I find it hard to justify having a tripod that costs more than 1/4 the cost of my camera body. A tripod should be steady and functional, and the 488RCx plus 055ProB fits both. It's all just a little heavy.
     
  4. Overread

    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member Supporting Member

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    corrected ;) :)

    AS for the 322RC2 its a good head for lighter lenses as its quick to alter, but if your using a zoom lens, manual focus or a heavier telephoto lens then it starts to get a bit tricky to use. This is because you can't turn all the pressure off and leave it off - you have to have a hand on the gripper - so if your following something moving you can't both move the head and also adjust the zoom or support a heavier lens with your hand.
    Its a good generalist head and with lighter setups and AF it works well.
     
  5. blash

    blash TPF Noob!

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    1) 488RC4 is built for medium format cameras that have a bigger base to support. Although DSLR's will fit on a 488RC4, if you ever quick-release the 40D off your tripod you could have the 488RC4 running into your wrist, whereas you wouldn't have that problem with the 488RC2.
    3) Much, much easier to frame. Can't say a 3-way is better than a ballhead until you've tried a ballhead.

    Small warning about the legs - they're nice legs, but they aren't $500+ carbon fiber legs. They're pretty good, but they're not God - they won't hold up in high winds and they won't hold up if you put anything heavy on it. I bought it because I can't afford to put anything heavy on it to begin with, but with those L lenses... you might want to invest in something better and get it right the first time.
     
  6. CxThree

    CxThree TPF Noob!

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    Thanks.

    Which CF models are you suggesting?
    Also, some have mentioned I might want to look at Giottos, but I know absolutely nothing about their models. What is comperable to these legs and what would be their CF versions?
     
  7. Defy

    Defy TPF Noob!

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    I have the same legs and i went with the C2 because i can leave it on the camera all the time and it doesn't intrude! But either way those legs with a ball head is perfect. It has no problem holding my 70-200 2.8 but i don't know if i would trust it with anything bigger than a 400mm prime.
     
  8. CxThree

    CxThree TPF Noob!

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    Great feedback. I think I am going to start another thread for clarity on some of the higher end models of Manfrotto and Giottos CF models. I want to be sure about the purchase. A new thread may be the best way to get feedback. I will research the forums a bit then post a new thread.

    Thanks again for all the feedback. I think the 055xprob and 488rc2 are my choice for now. Just want to see how much I would need to put with this purchase to step up.
     
  9. Garbz

    Garbz No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Thanks overread I was out of it when i posted that.

    Errr your kidding right? One guy in our local photo club supports his Burke & James 108 8x10" view camera on it, and the other his D300 + grip + SB-800 + 200-400mm f/4. Unless you are talking 600mm and larger lenses I doubt you'll have weight issues with these legs at all. Also give me heavy metal legs rather than light carbon fibre ones in windy conditions any day :er:.
     

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