Manfrotto Heads for Hasselblad

Discussion in 'Medium Format Cameras and Accessories' started by arigram, Jul 15, 2008.

  1. arigram

    arigram Member

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    I hope you can help me out with this decision.
    I have a Manfrotto 055 tripod which I use in the studio for my Hasselblads. It has been so far equipped with the Basic 3-way head with quick release plate 141RC. After a few years of using that combination, I decided that some gripes that I have could result in getting a new head.
    - The plate doesn't seem to hold perfectly still
    - The plate even screwed tightly does not hold the Hasselblad perfectly, especially with heavy lenses and when tilted, the camera tends to loosen up and shift position.
    - The movements of the axis don't seem smooth enough even after being lubricated with gun oil.

    I've tried a ball-head (486RC2) and didn't seem comfortable. But maybe a bigger one would.
    I've looked at the special hexagonical plate Manfrotto has for the Hasselblad and understood that I need a new head for it. It is an expensive investment and I don't have the luxury of trying it out before buying.
    So, my question to you is:
    - Will the hexagonical plate hold the camera as tightly and steadily as it should?
    If the answer is yes, I will probably go for the Pro 3D Head (229).
     
  2. Andrew Moxom

    Andrew Moxom Member

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    Arigram, yes it will work fine. I used a hexagonal plate for years with a Hasselblad on a benbo tripod. It is a strong mount. I'm not sure about whether it was made especially for the Hasselblad though? I used a regular manfrotto hex mount
     
  3. arigram

    arigram Member

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    Thank you Andrew,
    I am referring to this plate:
    [​IMG]
    It seems to have a ridge that may hold the camera straight with no chance of it tilting to the sides as it does with regular heads.
    I am trying to find out if its worth it to shell out money for the new head and plate, because I really need the camera to be more secure than it is now.
     
  4. arigram

    arigram Member

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    Anyone has any experience with the Pro 3D Head (229)?
    I need to know if its smooth.
    The head that I have now, needs some pushing to move in millimeters, so its not really smooth
    and can be a pain when trying to get a good composition with you need precision.
    But, no, I don't need a gear head, don't need THAT much precision and they are way too slow for my needs.
     
  5. dpurdy

    dpurdy Member

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    Ari I use hex plates with my Pentax67 and Rolleiflex and I have several.. A few of them are not solid and jiggle. Others are rock solid. I recently got a Gitzo ball head (Gitzo G1227M) and I absolutely love it. It was not all that expensive and is very solid with a bogen hex holder on top. It takes a bit to get used to reaching for a knob to loosen rather than handles where you expect them but it is so compact and works very well.
    Dennis
     
  6. RobC

    RobC Member

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    Suggest you try a slik 700DX head. It has circular mounting plate which drops into the head and clamps. This head has really good three way pan tilt. Smooth and locks solid but very easy to adjust position.
     
  7. Soeren

    Soeren Member

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    Ari I also have a 055 with a 141 (non RC) head. I have set my mind on an Arca Swiss Z1 ballhead as my next.
    Kind regards
     
  8. Greg_E

    Greg_E Member

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    The cut out part is normally filled with a rubberized cork material to help prevent things from turning. Used to use those with video equipment a long time ago. The larger ball head should be better, but they only have a single large model now, and it is rather expensive. So much so that you should be able to find a good used Arca for nearly the same price. Calumet has a nice big ball head too, and of course Really Right Stuff.

    The larger ball gives more contact area, which provides a stronger hold. And on the larger heads there is a drag adjustment to help keep the camera from getting away when you unlock the ball.
     
  9. Jerevan

    Jerevan Subscriber

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    I have had the 229 (designated as 029) head. I used it with a Mamiya RZ and some of my numerous TLR. No problems what so ever. I think it would work great with the Hasselblad plate mentioned above. If you have to have a ballhead, the only one worth mentioning in my experience is the Arca Monoball.
     
  10. 2F/2F

    2F/2F Member

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    The 4x4 square plate is pretty darned universal, *extremely* secure, and is probably almost perfect fit for a Hassy. It is by far my favorite quick release plate ever made. It fits almost everything, and there is no chance of any slippage whatsoever due to the large rubber area. I have one permanently attached to my Sinar so I don't have to buy the over-$300 (used!) Sinar tripod head. The standard Bogen hex plates don't work on their tripod couplers. Sinar's attempt at making overpriced proprietary equipment a necessity has been blown by Bogen with a $40 part. I have a few more that work great on all sorts of cameras. This plate is not much, and a used 3047 head will be cheap, smooth, and handle anything you can put on it. You can probably find a 3036 or 3051 tripod with this head on it in near mint condition for $200 or under, then resell sell the legs with your current head if you don't want them. That would be the cheapest way to procure a 3047 head.

    B&H link:

    http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/554277-REG/Bogen_Manfrotto_030L_030L_Large_4x4_Square.html

    In use:

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 15, 2008
  11. arigram

    arigram Member

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  12. Greg_E

    Greg_E Member

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    The QR system should be removeable so that you could use any QR system that you want. My ball head has 2 screws that hold the QR system to the head, a large one to bear the brunt of the work, and a small one to keep it from rotating. Remove those 2 screws and I should be able to mount any other QR system that I want as long as the holes line up.
     
  13. arigram

    arigram Member

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    I am trying to find a solution so I don't have to fork out 200 euros for a new head...
     
  14. Greg_E

    Greg_E Member

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    My used ball head cost almost that much. I finally came to the conclusion that if I wanted something good, I was going to have to fork out more money than I really wanted to spend.

    That said I have had good luck with an old Bogen 3025, and I thought they had a heavier duty version but I don't see it listed. The 3025 was just a little on the light side for my Mamiya 645 1000s camera, prism, and 210 lens, so not sure if I would suggest it for your needs.

    If you think the head is up to the task, can't you just replace the QR system? It looks like your head uses the same RC2 QR plate that I have on my ball head. If so I am not having problems keeping the camera locked down, maybe all you need is a new plate? If not then other parts of the QR system may be worn.
     
  15. BrianShaw

    BrianShaw Member

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    I use Bogen/Manfrotto 486 ball head with the Hasselblad quick release gizmo quite successfully. It is an inexpensive combination that actually works. I don't like the Bogen/Manfrotto hex-QR plates on any camera except my LF monorail.
     
  16. arigram

    arigram Member

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    I don't really like that ball head, or at least it doesn't work with me. I prefer the three way heads.
    I am interested though, why don't you like the hexagonical plates?
     
  17. BrianShaw

    BrianShaw Member

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    I suprised myself to find out that I liked the ball head. I resisted them for years. We all have our preferences and biases... and that's OK!

    I use Hassy both on and off of tripod. The hex plate is big and clunky when handholding the camera. I also find it difficult to get it tight enough to keep the camera from spinning. My hex plates have the finger-screw and locking ring rather than the slotted screw that you posted earlier int he thread. On my LF camera I tightened it to the mounting block with a wrench since that camera is only used on a tripod. For a permanent mounting situation I've found the hex plates quite acceptable.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 16, 2008
  18. vic vic

    vic vic Member

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    ari hi ..
    i have 486rc2 ballhead that goes with 190proxb as my small mobile tripod.. it is very nice for compact camers, say rolleiflex or hasselbald swc903 and alike. well maybe it is better to use it even for hasselbald with normal setup (waist levl finder and 80mm) than not using tripid at all :smile:
    but for 055 any version of 488 is far more balanced and it should keep the hasselblad (and say 120mm planar and alike) with smoothness and full confidance. wether u want a ballhead or not it is another question ... the pro 3d u mentioned is very good too, and though i dont have it, but i used it alot of times and it is smooth and sits into place even with accurate repeated re-adjustments..
    anyway, all in all, a 055+488 (or alternative 3d head) is just great.. as far as i know only the foba and the linhof (both = $$$$$$) feel better (and mainly as a matter of luxury compared to manfrotto) ...
     
  19. vic vic

    vic vic Member

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    ah.. about the geared head ...
    thats a tricky question, at least for me since i do love the ballheads.
    but u can use a geared head very fast too, remember, u have an option to open that gear and use it free handed for fast placement and then continue fine tunning with the gear.. it works fast, i wouldnot say it is slower than 3d head in almost any case in practice. ballhead is a different story of course, faster but when u need super accuracy in fixing the stuff in place it needs some relaxation, coordination and patience :smile:
     
  20. Allan Swindles

    Allan Swindles Member

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    I use a Manfrotto 055 with a basic 3 way head, no Q/R plates but with Hasselblad's Tripod Mounting Unit. Q/R and solid as a rock, even with the 350mm. Highly recommended.
     
  21. Brandon D.

    Brandon D. Member

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    Manfrotto 488RC2

    Just recently, I bought a Manfrotto 190CX3 and a 488RC2. The lightweight combo worked great for my Hasselblad 501C.
     
  22. John Koehrer

    John Koehrer Subscriber

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  23. André E.C.

    André E.C. Member

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    I have the 229/055CLB combo Ari, the 229 it's very smooth, yet a bit heavy and together with the 055CLB, nothing impossible, but surely not the lightest setup around.
    I've used ballheads before with my Blad, I surely prefer this 3D from manfrotto, go for it, I'm sure you will be happy!


    Cheers


    André
     
  24. Thanasis

    Thanasis Member

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    Kalispera Ari,

    I have the 229 head with the standard hex quick release plate. I bought this head specifically to make sure that it could take the Hasselblad weight and size with the 80mm lens attached. I was going to fork out for the special Hassy quick realease plate but i decided to go with the standard plate initially and then, if there were any issues, i would then buy the special Hassy plate. I have had no reason to change the plate. The standard plate that comes with the Manfrotto 229 head works beautifully as does the head itself. It is quite heavy but extremely stable and precise. It never feels loose. I have stood on windy cliffs and windy beaches and it has been rock solid. I am using it with the Manfrotto 055XProB tripod legs. The head is built like a brick shithouse and did i mention that it is solid? It is easy to use with the hard rubbery handles on each of three controls and has spirit levels up the wazoo. It also comes with a 3/8" and 1/4" screw on the plate for camera mounting. I use the 3/8" screw for the Hasselblad and the 1/4" for my smaller camera.

    I recommend the 229 head and standard plate but if you really want to be sure then, by all means, buy the 229 head with the Hasselblad plate. I have found that the standard plate works fine (and works with all my other non Hasselblad cameras too).

    I'd be very interested to hear how your results compare.

    regards,
    Thanasis