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Thread: Ball or Pan-tilt head for 8x10?

  1. #1

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    Ball or Pan-tilt head for 8x10?

    I'm preparing to fire up a Burke & James 8x10 that's been in storage for many years.

    In my day to day work with 35mm size digital cameras I use an Arca B-1 ballhead and love it. However, I'm suspecting this may not be the best choice for a much larger and heavier view camera and that a pan-tilt head would be better. I've got a set of legs that should be adequate, but would need a new head.

    If you've used both a ballhead and a pan-tilt head with your large format camera, especially 8x10, I'd be interested in your thoughts.

  2. #2
    Tin Can's Avatar
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    Dec 2011
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    Re: Ball or Pan-tilt head for 8x10?

    That's a heavy camera

    I use a G1570 M

    Ries is the recommended gear here
    2022

  3. #3

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    Re: Ball or Pan-tilt head for 8x10?

    I tried a ball head with a 4x5... once. Too hard to control. 3-axis head is best for anything bigger than MF.

  4. #4

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    Re: Ball or Pan-tilt head for 8x10?

    Arca Z1 under my Wehman, Wehman with Arca-rail for balance, the Burzynski (60mm? ball ) I used on my Linhof Kardan was bought by a friend who wanted it back. The clamp on my Arca is big enough for the wider Linhof rail, so the weight can also can be balanced on this.

    Sent fra min SM-G975F via Tapatalk

  5. #5
    Tin Can's Avatar
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    Re: Ball or Pan-tilt head for 8x10?

    I also use a FLM with 100mm half ball and no head.
    2022

  6. #6

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    Re: Ball or Pan-tilt head for 8x10?

    Quote Originally Posted by Oslolens View Post
    ...the Burzynski (60mm? ball ) I used on my Linhof Kardan was bought by a friend who wanted it back...
    Not surprising; it's a great head.

    Here's how I use mine under a Phillips Compact II:


  7. #7
    Drew Wiley
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    Re: Ball or Pan-tilt head for 8x10?

    I don't use any kind of head for 8x10. I bolt the camera directly to the platform top of a Ries tripod via the standard turnbolt below. A ball head has the weak link of a stem - logically, a worst case scenario for a heavy camera. A half-ball design might work, or something like a Ries pan/tilt head.

  8. #8

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    Re: Ball or Pan-tilt head for 8x10?

    I'll assume that your B&J is the wooden Commercial view and not the Grover rail view camera

    Gitzo G 1575 M Professional Ball Joint Head/Off Centre Ball Head: A nightmare to work with because of its off center head.

    Gitzo G 1570 M Pan-tilt Head: Excellent with a large platform to rest the camera on.

    Any Ries J250 Head: If chosen, call them up and ask them which head to recommend for your camera.

    B&J tilt top head for their "Portable Studio Stand" tripod: Tilt top head with piano hinge. Excellent and can be found for around $50 which has to be the best bargain out there.

    Large RRS ball head: I adapted a Kessler Crane Kwik Release Receiver to it. Never thought I'd use my 8x10 on a ball head, I was wrong with this combination.

    I've always bought my heads used but in "mint-" condition. Not the newest model if possible. Pretty much saved 50% or more over acquiring a new head.

  9. #9

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    Re: Ball or Pan-tilt head for 8x10?

    I prefer the Gitzo G1570M for my 8x10 Deardorff, but a RRS BH-55 works fine for my 8x10 Intrepid.

  10. #10

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    Re: Ball or Pan-tilt head for 8x10?

    I use a Ries J100 with double tilt head for my Wehman 8x10. It's more like a platform than a head and is very sturdy. I wouldn't consider a ball head myself but to each their own.

    Ries is expensive new but you get what you pay for. I bought my head and tripod used off eBay for a really good price. They looked like they were hardly used, even the spikes. You have to be patient though.

    If you do go the ball head route don't buy one of those off set ball heads. I bought a used Gitzo off set ball head for 35mm once. I hated the thing and put it back on eBay.

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