EZ-lever or ball head - do I need it?

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  1. EZ-lever or ball head - do I need it?

    #1

    Hi everyone,

    I'm quite new to VR phopography any my learning curve is still pretty steep. I've done lots of PTGui and Phoposhop tutorials together with several hand held panos. I came to the point of considering NN pano head purchase but I'm not sure if should I buy an EZ-lever or a ball head as well. I would appreciate an opinion of more experienced users of how can I benefit from this stuff. Does I really need it?

    Thanks,
    Marcin
  2. Re: EZ-lever or ball head - do I need it?

    #2
    Users Country Flag
    Join Date: Apr 2008
    Location: Saddleworth UK
    Posts: 242

    Quote Originally Posted by Marcin Krugly View Post
    Hi everyone,

    I'm quite new to VR phopography any my learning curve is still pretty steep. I've done lots of PTGui and Phoposhop tutorials together with several hand held panos. I came to the point of considering NN pano head purchase but I'm not sure if should I buy an EZ-lever or a ball head as well. I would appreciate an opinion of more experienced users of how can I benefit from this stuff. Does I really need it?

    Thanks,
    Marcin
    Need is somewhat subjective.
    I now use my NN directly on the legs and level by adjusting them alone.
    Others find that very frustrating to do.
    The less stuff between the camera and legs the better to reduce vibration.
    If I could not manage with legs alone the Ezlleveller is by far the best option as it is short squat and stable.

    A ball or other sturdy head is a necessary item for general non pano photography any way, and at the very least I always have one in the car, but do not always carry it in my bag.

    Terry
  3. Re: EZ-lever or ball head - do I need it?

    #3

    Quote Originally Posted by Marcin Krugly View Post
    I'm not sure if should I buy an EZ-lever or a ball head as well. I would appreciate an opinion of more experienced users of how can I benefit from this stuff. Does I really need it?
    Thanks, Marcin
    Hi Macin, welcome to the forum.
    I believe for most a good ball head would work just fine. Personally I like the 3265 vertical hard grip ball head by manfrotto. It provides for easy use and leveling - ok I kick a leg or two on the tripod to tweak from time to time to help tweak level but who doesn't . The ball head also allows for a smaller footprint when shooting the nadir (down shot).
    The EZ-Leveler works great for leveling no doubt and I certainly suggest getting one but only if you find yourself having difficulty leveling with existing gear.
    Cheers
    Bill
  4. Re: EZ-lever or ball head - do I need it?

    #4

    When I had my NN3, I put it directly on my Manfrotto tripod, and used the leg adjustments to level (time consuming)

    When I bought my NN5, I bought the EZ Leveler as well, and I love it!

    I setup my tripod, and don't worry about it being level (well, it should be close to level, you don't want it leaning over at a steep angle)

    I put the EZ-Leveler directly on the tripod and attach the NN5. Then I adjust the EZ Leveler.

    Then I'll add my camera to the NN5 and readjust to make sure it's still level. I'll loosen the tripod head so I can rotate the vertical shaft (I do this so I can center up my first pano shot through the camera) lock the shaft, then readjust the EZ Leveler.

    I'd say buy it and skip the ball head. Ball heads are great for regular photography but for panos, I found it difficult to lock in a precise level (because it moves on all axis at once). The leveler lets you dial in 1 adjustment at a time.

    Kirk




    --
    Kirk
    Moss Creek Media
    www.MossCreekMedia.com
  5. Re: EZ-lever or ball head - do I need it?

    #5

    Quote Originally Posted by Marcin Krugly View Post
    I'm not sure if should I buy an EZ-lever or a ball head as well.
    For 360x180 bubble panoramas, the tripod doesn't need to be level. I bought the EZ-leveler about a year ago and haven't really used it since...

    Pierre
  6. Re: EZ-lever or ball head - do I need it?

    #6

    Yes, levelling a 360x180 panorama in programs such as PTGui, Hugin and Autopano usually takes less than a minute if there are some vertical features present or there's a clear view of the horizon. The technique is easily learned. It is nevertheless helpful on occasion to have a properly levelled head. I use a Manfrotto tripod with a built-in 50mm ball head which is very fast and sufficiently accurate for my purposes. See the tripod illustrated at http://tinyurl.com/6fluuc .
  7. Re: EZ-lever or ball head - do I need it?

    #7

    Join Date: May 2008
    Location: Alberta, Canada, Eh ?
    Posts: 48

    Quote Originally Posted by John Houghton View Post

    . . . . I use a Manfrotto tripod with a built-in 50mm ball head which is very fast and sufficiently accurate for my purposes. See the tripod illustrated at http://tinyurl.com/6fluuc .
    Any problem with seeing the bubble level on the NN3 with your arm reaching down to the locking knob, or do you just level the tripod with it's bubble? I've liked the concept but haven't tried it for myself.

    :?:



    Edmonton, Canada, Eh ?
  8. Re: EZ-lever or ball head - do I need it?

    #8

    There's no problem reaching down to the adjustment knob. I don't level the tripod itself - I just use the bubble level on the NN5. The ball provides up to +/- 20 degrees of pitch adjustment.

    John
  9. Re: EZ-lever or ball head - do I need it?

    #9

    All,

    Thank you for your input. I have now much better feeling of what can I expect from an EZ-lever and a ball head. Hope to have more such valuable conversations here on NN forum!

    Thanks,
    Marcin
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