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Author Topic: Panorama equipment choices  (Read 7250 times)

cameraGreg

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Panorama equipment choices
« on: July 28, 2006, 01:15:19 pm »

I am considering the purchase of some panorama equipment that will be used with a Gitzo tripod and Kirk BH-3 ballhead <http://www.kirkphoto.com/ballheadbh3.html>.  The ballhead already has a built in panning base, although it’s not as precise or easy to read as the PCL-1, below.  The choices I’m considering are one of the following:

1) An Acratech Leveling Base <http://acratech.net/miva/merchant.mv?Screen=PROD&Store_Code=AOS&Product_Code=LB&Category_Code=Ballheads> between my tripod and ballbead

OR

2) Really Right Stuff’s PCL-1 Panning Clamp <http://www.reallyrightstuff.com/pano/index.html> attached to the top of the ballhead

Either of these will then be used with one of Really Right Stuff’s nodal sliding clamps.

The Acratech is lighter and cheaper, but the PCL-1 may be more convenient.
I am wondering which of these would provide a sturdier mount and/or be more flexible and convenient.  Any thoughts and comments are appreciated,

Thanks,
Greg
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amplexis

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Panorama equipment choices
« Reply #1 on: July 28, 2006, 01:46:35 pm »

hello,
you don't say what camera body or what lens range you prefer to shoot with. i use a 20d with the 50 1.8 or the 70-200 f4 as my principal tools. with the 50 i do 36 shots per rotation and with the 70-200 set around 100mm i do 72 cliks. i use a modified nodal ninja with a manfrotto 300N Panoramic Rotation Head. if you wish to shoot with wide angle lenses you have more choices. i shoot 200-400 shot panos stitch em and i am starting to print out images big enough to cover walls and ceilings. the kaidan rig is probably good for bigger pro cameras.
enjoy,
vincent
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DarkPenguin

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Panorama equipment choices
« Reply #2 on: July 28, 2006, 03:07:28 pm »

How did you modify your nodal ninja?  I use an acratech leveling bas and have the arm portion of the nodal ninja attached to a kirk rail.  I've also attached a kirk clamp to the nodal ninja arm.  This lets me lock everythng nicely in place, reduces weight and lets the NN swing arm attach to my camera without removing the L bracket.
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amplexis

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Panorama equipment choices
« Reply #3 on: July 28, 2006, 04:20:10 pm »

i drilled and tapped the basebar so the manfrotto would screw into the basebar, and i mounted a rrs clamp on the arm. it continues to evolve.
vincent
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stever

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Panorama equipment choices
« Reply #4 on: July 28, 2006, 06:32:37 pm »

i use a 20d with an RRS L-plate (i really like to shoot vertical panos for the extra resolution) which i usually leave on the camera, and a RRS MPR-CL which is compact and light weight and also useful for Macro work.  i recently used this with the 100-400 - the Nodal Ninja certainly is priced right but does not look too good for long lenses

the problem with putting the Pano Base on top of the ball head is that the camera must then be shot level rather than tilted slightly up or down with respect to the horizon - the other problem is that i find leveling a camera on a ball-head is a bit fiddly

can somebody with more experience comment on this?
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cameraGreg

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Panorama equipment choices
« Reply #5 on: July 28, 2006, 07:29:29 pm »

Hi,
Sorry I forgot to list my equipment: 20D, 10-22mm, 50mm f/1.8, 18-55mm kit lens, and 70-200 mm f/4.

This brings up another question: what lens(es) do you use for panos and why?  I see myself, at least initially, with the intent of only stitching a few/several landscape images together, and not a 360 degree pano.

Thanks,
Greg
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DarkPenguin

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Panorama equipment choices
« Reply #6 on: July 28, 2006, 08:08:01 pm »

I typically use 28mm or 50mm.  They have little in the way of distortion so they stitch nicely.
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stever

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Panorama equipment choices
« Reply #7 on: July 31, 2006, 02:17:09 am »

I do landscape panoramas with a longer lens (vertical) for maximum resolution - but if your're doing indoor/architechtural you'l l need shorter focal length

With digital you can take as many images as you need to get it right.
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rvanr

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Panorama equipment choices
« Reply #8 on: July 31, 2006, 06:24:16 am »

One important part of the toolkit for panoramics is the stitching software. I bought PanoramaFactory and like it a lot.

The results are good and it is very flexible: you can choose to automate the whole process if your images align very well (and using the equipment mentioned in the posts above they should do), but if you want to make adjustments it is very easy to do the whole or part of the process 'manually' giving you all the control.

Ruud
« Last Edit: July 31, 2006, 06:24:46 am by rvanr »
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marcmccalmont

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Panorama equipment choices
« Reply #9 on: July 31, 2006, 05:07:05 pm »

Quote
I am considering the purchase of some panorama equipment that will be used with a Gitzo tripod and Kirk BH-3 ballhead <http://www.kirkphoto.com/ballheadbh3.html>.  The ballhead already has a built in panning base, although it’s not as precise or easy to read as the PCL-1, below.  The choices I’m considering are one of the following:

1) An Acratech Leveling Base <http://acratech.net/miva/merchant.mv?Screen=PROD&Store_Code=AOS&Product_Code=LB&Category_Code=Ballheads> between my tripod and ballbead

OR

2) Really Right Stuff’s PCL-1 Panning Clamp <http://www.reallyrightstuff.com/pano/index.html> attached to the top of the ballhead

Either of these will then be used with one of Really Right Stuff’s nodal sliding clamps.

The Acratech is lighter and cheaper, but the PCL-1 may be more convenient.
I am wondering which of these would provide a sturdier mount and/or be more flexible and convenient.  Any thoughts and comments are appreciated,

Thanks,
Greg
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Marc McCalmont

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Panorama equipment choices
« Reply #10 on: July 31, 2006, 05:23:17 pm »

Quote
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Since I already owned a good ball head I purchased the Really Right Stuff’s PCL-1 Panning Clamp and have had great results. Once you have a bubble level on the clamp you use it a lot, more for single frame shots than panaramas, I mount the camera with the clamps knob pointing away from the camera and have the level insight as a reference. I do not use any nodal clamps. My workflow is as follows: find the brightest part of the scene and set a manual exposure to push the exposure to the right, shoot the overlaping frames, process the raw w/ DXO optics,
Find the frame with the best color and color match the frames in CS2, stitch them in Panorama factory. Stunning results (EOS 5D, 24-105 is) I hope this helps-Marc
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Marc McCalmont

TTHU

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Panorama equipment choices
« Reply #11 on: August 14, 2006, 10:16:14 am »

Quote
How did you modify your nodal ninja?  I use an acratech leveling bas and have the arm portion of the nodal ninja attached to a kirk rail.  I've also attached a kirk clamp to the nodal ninja arm.  This lets me lock everythng nicely in place, reduces weight and lets the NN swing arm attach to my camera without removing the L bracket.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=72021\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
I use Nodal Ninja PT, with my Fuji S3Pro, and I see all Nikon 50/1.8, 35/2, 24/2.8 have same nodal point in PT. I don't know why, but I do it  very well, when stitching, even with 42 files (about 2,9 GB in 16 bit color, with Autopano Pro).
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