ball head users

Discussion in 'Medium Format Cameras and Accessories' started by medformatjunkie, Oct 10, 2005.

  1. medformatjunkie

    medformatjunkie Member

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    Was wondering if anyone has or have used a Giotto's MH 3000 ball head? I've been thinking of getting one for my Bronica SQAi system, putting it on my Manfrotto 3021BPRO. I've heard some horror stories about their MH 1000 head so I'm a little leary. Any advice? Thanks!
     
  2. bobbysandstrom

    bobbysandstrom Member

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    All I can say is the Arca Swiss B1 ROCKS! I've gone thru numerous heads and that is the one that hands down beats all others. I use it with everything from medium format up to 8x10 tachihara (15lbs or so). I use it with a Gitzo tripod. IMO, the system is definitely worth the investment.
     
  3. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member

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    I'm not a fan of ballheads, but I did want to have a small one for my most compact tripod, so I looked at the Giottos MH1000, Linhof Ballhead 1, and one other of comparable size--maybe Kaiser. I went with the Linhof. Of the Giottos and the Kaiser, I think one had a nice big ball, but not a smooth pan, and the other had a really smooth pan, but too small a ball, and the Linhof had a good sized ball and smooth pan movement. I think you'll find a similar pattern as you scale up to larger versions.
     
  4. david b

    david b Member

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    I have the Kirk BH-3. It is the best I've ever had. I had the BH-1 and it was too big for my Mamiya 7 and Hasselblad set-ups.

    The Kirk would hold your Bronica with no problem.
     
  5. brent8927

    brent8927 Subscriber

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    I use the Bogen 3021BPro too for my Hasselblad, and I use the 488 ballhead for it; it works quite well and is pretty rugged, and more importantly, cheap! My guess is if it works for a Hasselblad it'll work for the SQ; I think the weight is probably the same.

    If you have the money though, the Arca B1 really is the best. I used one for my 4x5 and then my Hasselblad for a while; it was simply a dream. I only sold it because I needed money (poor college student... of course if I were poor I couldn't afford a Hasselblad, but seriously, all my money goes into photo equipment!) and also because it's a precision instrument, so it wouldn't take a beating as well as the Bogen head could, and if the Bogen head broke, it wasn't too much to replace (about $80.00).

    A salesman at Keeble and Schuchat Photography in Palo Alto told me that the Giottos ballheads were just cheap Itlian knock-offs of the Kaiser ballheads, and weren't worth looking at. Of course, if it works it works, I just never tried them out.
     
  6. Dave Parker

    Dave Parker Inactive

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    The Giottos are good quality ball heads with lifetime warrantee on them, I never seen a broke one the whole time I sold them, as far as the Arca taking a beating, I am hear to tell you, you can beat them to death and they will still keep working, I have an Arca head that is many years old and has been carried through Ice, Snow, Sand, Mud and just about anything else you can think of and I have never had a problem with it at all, it will defenately take a beating, far more than any of the bogens I have ever had..

    Dave
     
  7. Paul Sorensen

    Paul Sorensen Subscriber

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    I had a MH-1000 and really liked it. It locked down very well and seemed well made. I am not sure what horror stories you have heard, but the thing I noticed is that they have a ridicluously high listed maximum load. I got rid of the head when I realized that it was not stout enough to support my 10 lb Cambo 4X5 without some vibration. For my Mamiya 645 I loved it, and I still wish I had it for that, but I can't justify having two tripod heads.
     
  8. Dave Parker

    Dave Parker Inactive

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    Paul,

    How can anyone not have more than one tripod head???

    LOL

    Dave
     
  9. Paul Sorensen

    Paul Sorensen Subscriber

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    I know, eight cameras and but one tripod head. Unfortunately, something had to go of I would have hell to pay. :smile:
     
  10. resummerfield

    resummerfield Subscriber

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    I like the Arca B-2 better for heavier cameras, as it seems to give better control. Put it on a heavy wooden tripod and I'm sure it would hold way over 50 pounds.
     
  11. medformatjunkie

    medformatjunkie Member

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    Well, thanks everyone. Price is defenitly a concern on my part. Thats why I was looking at the giotto's. I have had my eye on the 488 also. I know all about the Kirks and Arca Swiss. I guess I'll just have to squirrel away more money. I quess some more filters will have to wait!
     
  12. André E.C.

    André E.C. Member

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    I`m using one Manfrotto 488 RC0 Ball, so far, so good!
    Not expensive and do the job well.

    Cheers

    André
     
  13. Tom Hoskinson

    Tom Hoskinson Member

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    The Arca/Swiss B-1 does hold over 50 pounds (it's rated at 65, I believe). I've gone to 40+ pounds with mine (on a carbon composite tripod) with plenty of margin remaining.
     
  14. waynecrider

    waynecrider Member

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    I use a MH1000 for my MF cameras and occasionally for my Graphics. It drifts a little when putting a Crown in the vertical position but it's still useable. I like their reversable head that gives you the two different stud sizes.

    Recently I looked at the Bogen 488 series with quick connect. I probably would buy this one next. http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/con...=&ci=140&ac=&Submit.x=13&Submit.y=9&Submit=Go
     
  15. John Koehrer

    John Koehrer Subscriber

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    A salesman at Keeble and Schuchat Photography in Palo Alto told me that the Giottos ballheads were just cheap Itlian knock-offs of the Kaiser ballheads, and weren't worth looking at. Of course, if it works it works, I just never tried them out.[/QUOTE]
    Actually the Giottos are made in China. They are pretty well made for the price point. Similar to Bogen in quality they are nowhere near the quality of the other heads you're looking at.
     
  16. Paul Sorensen

    Paul Sorensen Subscriber

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    I should have mentioned that I had an inexpensive Manfrotto head with the resin ball, I think it was about $50 or so, and it was really bad. It wouldn't lock down enough for me with the 645 and felt very flimsy, that is why I ended up getting the Giottos which was much better.
     
  17. jadphoto

    jadphoto Member

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    Hi,

    You may want to check out the new Really Right Stuff BH-40.

    They're currently back ordered but they expect a shipment soon.

    Joe D.
     
  18. Shawn Rahman

    Shawn Rahman Subscriber

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    Wow - what of the Arca B-2 could possibly justify the $775 price?