Ninja 3 or 5: Budget Constraints

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  1. Ninja 3 or 5: Budget Constraints

    #1

    Join Date: Nov 2009
    Location: Adelaide South Australia
    Posts: 6

    G'day
    Greetings from South Australia. I am a complete newbie to panoramas. I work for an Australian University and want to make panoramas into tours for educational purposes. I recently purchased a Nikon D5000 and an 18-200 mm lens.

    From what I can figure based on the info on this site ... I think I need a Ninja 5 head. I would like to get a Nikkor fisheye lens but am afraid the cost too expensive right now and I need to wait. I think if I get say a 55mm standard lens the weight of the camera plus lens is light enough for a Ninja 3.

    Is this the correct logic? What head should I get? The cost difference between 3 and 5 could pay for the extra lens.

    Any advice on which head and extra accessories I need would be a great help

    Regards
    Allan
  2. Re: Ninja 3 or 5: Budget Constraints

    #2
    Users Country Flag
    Join Date: Apr 2008
    Location: Hong Kong
    Posts: 2,413

    Quote Originally Posted by AllanADL View Post
    G'day
    Greetings from South Australia. I am a complete newbie to panoramas. I work for an Australian University and want to make panoramas into tours for educational purposes. I recently purchased a Nikon D5000 and an 18-200 mm lens.

    From what I can figure based on the info on this site ... I think I need a Ninja 5 head. I would like to get a Nikkor fisheye lens but am afraid the cost too expensive right now and I need to wait. I think if I get say a 55mm standard lens the weight of the camera plus lens is light enough for a Ninja 3.

    Is this the correct logic? What head should I get? The cost difference between 3 and 5 could pay for the extra lens.

    Any advice on which head and extra accessories I need would be a great help

    Regards
    Allan
    if you want to make spherical pano, you should get a fisheye lens. The Samyang (or other names) 8mm fisheye is quite cheap.
    http://shop.ebay.com/i.html?_nkw=8mm...1&_from=&_ipg=
    It works fine with NN3.


    Nick



    Fanotec
    We listen. We try harder.
  3. Re: Ninja 3 or 5: Budget Constraints

    #3
    Users Country Flag
    Join Date: Aug 2008
    Location: Netherlands
    Posts: 1,740

    Hallo Allan,

    just one question, do you have a 18-200 VR or VRII lens? You know you have to shoot round about 20 photos for a single row and 230 for a spherical with a nikkor 50mm/f1.4? You could better use your zoom lens at 18mm with about 3 rowa and 30 shots. But i need to know your lens to help you further.

    As nick said, a fisheye would be the best solution.

    Heinz
  4. Re: Ninja 3 or 5: Budget Constraints

    #4

    Join Date: Nov 2009
    Location: Adelaide South Australia
    Posts: 6

    Quote Originally Posted by hindenhaag View Post
    Hallo Allan,

    just one question, do you have a 18-200 VR or VRII lens? You know you have to shoot round about 20 photos for a single row and 230 for a spherical with a nikkor 50mm/f1.4? You could better use your zoom lens at 18mm with about 3 rowa and 30 shots. But i need to know your lens to help you further.

    As nick said, a fisheye would be the best solution.

    Heinz
    Thanks guys for the help

    Heinz I have a Nikkor 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VRII lens - I hope that helps.

    Appreciate a fisheye would be much better and am nervous about a brand other than Nikkor .... does marketing work or what :-) Anyone got further advice on the best brand quality for value. I appreciate the help re Ebay and there seems a lot of choices.

    Also is there some other lens I guess the lowest mm or widest angle the better that might be a compromise

    ONE MORE THING: Would my camera with the 18-200 lens be too heavy for a Mk 3. Also I have just purchased a tripod with a capacity limit of 4 lbs for travel .... am I pushing that with a head and my present camera configuration please.

    Again really appreciate the help .... I see virtual tours as a really under-utilised media type for higher education assessment - looking forward to developing something for example as part of scenario based learning

    Regards
    Allan
  5. Re: Ninja 3 or 5: Budget Constraints

    #5
    Users Country Flag
    Join Date: Apr 2008
    Location: Hong Kong
    Posts: 2,413

    Quote Originally Posted by AllanADL View Post
    Thanks guys for the help

    Heinz I have a Nikkor 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VRII lens - I hope that helps.

    Appreciate a fisheye would be much better and am nervous about a brand other than Nikkor .... does marketing work or what :-) Anyone got further advice on the best brand quality for value. I appreciate the help re Ebay and there seems a lot of choices.

    Also is there some other lens I guess the lowest mm or widest angle the better that might be a compromise

    ONE MORE THING: Would my camera with the 18-200 lens be too heavy for a Mk 3. Also I have just purchased a tripod with a capacity limit of 4 lbs for travel .... am I pushing that with a head and my present camera configuration please.

    Again really appreciate the help .... I see virtual tours as a really under-utilised media type for higher education assessment - looking forward to developing something for example as part of scenario based learning

    Regards
    Allan
    About Samyang, this may help.
    http://www.panoguide.com/forums/qna/7448/

    I am not sure about 18-200mm. It can be too long for NN3.

    Nick



    Fanotec
    We listen. We try harder.
  6. Re: Ninja 3 or 5: Budget Constraints

    #6

    Join Date: Nov 2009
    Location: Adelaide South Australia
    Posts: 6

    Quote Originally Posted by nick fan View Post
    About Samyang, this may help.
    http://www.panoguide.com/forums/qna/7448/

    I am not sure about 18-200mm. It can be too long for NN3.

    Nick
    Hi Nick
    Thanks for this. That forum thread was very interesting and one thing it did highlight was how much I have yet to learn about spherical panos etc. The Samyang looks really like a contender.

    Can anyone confirm or otherwise that my present 18-200 mm lens on a Nikon D5000 is too big/heavy for a NN3

    Regards
    Allan
  7. Re: Ninja 3 or 5: Budget Constraints

    #7

    Hello Allan,

    I have used my Nikon 18-200mm VR (but not VR II) lens on my Nikon D60 with my Nodal Ninja NN3 to produce successful Spherical Panoramas, but it does need a lot of images and additional Control Points when using PTGui to blend the images.

    The D5000 is 10mm and 14mm larger (D60 = 126 x 94 x 64mm, D5000 = 127 x 104 x 80mm) and 75g more than the D60 and the VR II 5g heavier, but the same size as the VR.

    http://www.hugha.co.uk/NodalPoint/Le...om_lens_@_18mm

    The nodal point on the Nikon 18-200mm VR is 32mm back from the front of the lens
    http://www.hugha.co.uk/NodalPoint/Index.htm#Results_

    Best regards, Hugh.
  8. Re: Ninja 3 or 5: Budget Constraints

    #8
    Users Country Flag
    Join Date: Aug 2008
    Location: Netherlands
    Posts: 1,740

    Hello Allan,

    just tested the 18-200mm VRII today with the D200. Till now i could proof the following settings with NN5 RD16 CP-2. Lower rail setting is 56 for the D200. For the D5000 it is 55 with NN5/CP-2, 59 for NN3/CP/2.

    Here are the settings: 18 103, 24 100, 35 90, 50 74, 70 52. Stopped with 135 which i have to confirm tomorrow, but it might be at 28, you have to use the special small knob. Cause the D5000 has another position of the tripod mount, 42mm instead of 40mm with the D200 you should go 2mm backwards. Knowing this, you can use settings from cameras with 40mm tripod mount distance to lens flange like D90 D80 D200 D3.

    Don't forget to order the EZ-Leveller II, which you can mount directly to your tripod without a ball head. You will be happy with this.

    To proof your lower rail setting you may use this link: http://www.easypano.com/forum/displa...1&TopicID=4162

    And welcome in the world of panos.

    Heinz
  9. Re: Ninja 3 or 5: Budget Constraints

    #9

    Quote Originally Posted by Hugh View Post
    Hello Allan,
    I have used my Nikon 18-200mm VR (but not VR II) lens on my Nikon D60 with my Nodal Ninja NN3 to produce successful Spherical Panoramas, but it does need a lot of images and additional Control Points when using PTGui to blend the images.
    The D5000 is 10mm and 14mm larger (D60 = 126 x 94 x 64mm, D5000 = 127 x 104 x 80mm) and 75g more than the D60 and the VR II 5g heavier, but the same size as the VR.
    http://www.hugha.co.uk/NodalPoint/Le...om_lens_@_18mm
    The nodal point on the Nikon 18-200mm VR is 32mm back from the front of the lens
    http://www.hugha.co.uk/NodalPoint/Index.htm#Results_
    Best regards, Hugh.
    Hugh - I see you are using this with the Leica GeoSystem - one minor suggestion would be to mount your camera with hand grip on the up side. Makes things feel a bit more ergonomic.
    Cheers
    Bill
  10. Re: Ninja 3 or 5: Budget Constraints

    #10

    Quote Originally Posted by AllanADL View Post
    G'day
    Greetings from South Australia. I am a complete newbie to panoramas. I work for an Australian University and want to make panoramas into tours for educational purposes. I recently purchased a Nikon D5000 and an 18-200 mm lens.
    From what I can figure based on the info on this site ... I think I need a Ninja 5 head. I would like to get a Nikkor fisheye lens but am afraid the cost too expensive right now and I need to wait. I think if I get say a 55mm standard lens the weight of the camera plus lens is light enough for a Ninja 3.
    Is this the correct logic? What head should I get? The cost difference between 3 and 5 could pay for the extra lens.
    Any advice on which head and extra accessories I need would be a great help
    Regards
    Allan
    Hey Allan,
    I see you are getting some good feedback - here's a bit more.
    While you could get by using this camera and lens on NN3 at the wider focal lengths (18mm) it is very near the upper weight limitations of the product - some sag may occur especially with longer exposures. The lens Nick suggested is a popular one and certainly worthy of consideration if you are favoring full spherical panoramas up to 360x180 degrees using your D5000 on NN3.

    Our least expensive option to accommodate your current needs is the NN5L. The stand alone version is only US$329 and even less if you can find one used (contact one of the resellers in your region). The NN5L will not only accommodate your camera and 18-200mm lens but give you much more room to grow later down the room. The image quality of the 18-55 would be better than the Samyang but obviously requires more images to produce a panorama. So the initial investment on your part would be less if opting for the NN5L.
    Here is a chart at the bottom of this page to give you a "general idea" of the number of shots required to shot at a given focal length.
    http://nodalninja.com/product_selector.html

    Hope this helps
    keep us posted on how you go
    Cheers
    Bill
  11. Re: Ninja 3 or 5: Budget Constraints

    #11

    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Bailey View Post
    Here is a chart at the bottom of this page to give you a "general idea" of the number of shots required to shot at a given focal length.
    http://nodalninja.com/product_selector.html
    The chart only gives the number of shots for a single row 360 degree panorama. A guide for the total number of shots needed for a full 360x180 panorama can be found at http://www.vrwave.com/.

    John
  12. Re: Ninja 3 or 5: Budget Constraints

    #12

    Join Date: Nov 2009
    Location: Adelaide South Australia
    Posts: 6

    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Bailey View Post
    Hey Allan,
    I see you are getting some good feedback - here's a bit more.
    While you could get by using this camera and lens on NN3 at the wider focal lengths (18mm) it is very near the upper weight limitations of the product - some sag may occur especially with longer exposures. The lens Nick suggested is a popular one and certainly worthy of consideration if you are favoring full spherical panoramas up to 360x180 degrees using your D5000 on NN3.

    Our least expensive option to accommodate your current needs is the NN5L. The stand alone version is only US$329 and even less if you can find one used (contact one of the resellers in your region). The NN5L will not only accommodate your camera and 18-200mm lens but give you much more room to grow later down the room. The image quality of the 18-55 would be better than the Samyang but obviously requires more images to produce a panorama. So the initial investment on your part would be less if opting for the NN5L.
    Here is a chart at the bottom of this page to give you a "general idea" of the number of shots required to shot at a given focal length.
    http://nodalninja.com/product_selector.html

    Hope this helps
    keep us posted on how you go
    Cheers
    Bill
    Guys

    What can I say .... I have trained for 10 years in Higher Ed to show academics/teachers how to, among other things, build learning communities. You guys practice it. Thanks so much for all the great advice.

    Let me ask some more questions to make sure I understand. Bill and others are suggesting - with some added interpretation. It would be best to buy

    1. The NN5L - the complete package maybe from the estore which has a sale price of US $349.95 at present exchange rate that is about A$393.00 (Aust dist selling price is A$450.00)

    2. Hindenhaag said not to forget the EZ-Leveller II that looks like it is US$110 approx

    3. Do I need a Rotator or is that in the NN5L package?

    Ok with this pano head system I can use the D5000 with the 18-200 mm lens and just take more pictures per pano until I can afford

    4. The Samyang 8mm f/3.5 Aspherical IF MC Fish-eye for NIKON which on ebay I can buy for US$290

    All I need then is the software .... open to recommendations especially for a MAC?

    BTW 10 years ago I was given a Manfrotto 303 head see here: http://services.manfrotto.com/303SPH/. It was way before spherical panos and I haven't used it for years ... so Im starting again. Is it worth anything and should I sell it? ... it is a heavy puppie.

    Again thanks for all the great advice I am on a steep learning curve

    Regards
    Allan

    P.S. If there are any educators/teachers especially Higher Ed reading this and use panos and tours for learning objects please contact me? The pedagogical possibilities are exciting


  13. Re: Ninja 3 or 5: Budget Constraints

    #13
    Users Country Flag
    Join Date: Apr 2008
    Location: Saddleworth UK
    Posts: 242

    Your heavy manfrotto 303 would certainly help fund your new Kit.

    The EZ leveller is a nice piece of kit and does make things easy. However though I have one, I do not use it, as I became very efficient levelling my Nodal ninja by levelling the legs of my manfrotto tripod,this was Long before the Levellers were available.
    Some people never acquire the facility to do this and for them a leveller is not only nice, it is essential.

    But the purchase of one could be put off at the start.

    The most popular software is PTGui. Though I use PTAssembler (perhaps not the best for 360x180)
  14. Re: Ninja 3 or 5: Budget Constraints

    #14
    Users Country Flag
    Join Date: Apr 2008
    Location: Hong Kong
    Posts: 2,413

    Quote Originally Posted by AllanADL View Post

    1. The NN5L - the complete package maybe from the estore which has a sale price of US $349.95 at present exchange rate that is about A$393.00 (Aust dist selling price is A$450.00)

    2. Hindenhaag said not to forget the EZ-Leveller II that looks like it is US$110 approx

    3. Do I need a Rotator or is that in the NN5L package?

    4. The Samyang 8mm f/3.5 Aspherical IF MC Fish-eye for NIKON which on ebay I can buy for US$290

    BTW 10 years ago I was given a Manfrotto 303 head see here: http://services.manfrotto.com/303SPH/. It was way before spherical panos and I haven't used it for years ... so Im starting again. Is it worth anything and should I sell it? ... it is a heavy puppie.
    If you buy from estore, you should take the shipping cost and possible import duty into account.
    NN5L package includes the default rotator. You can also consider the NN5L RD8 package. RD8 is more robust, precise and easy to use than the default rotator.
    You can sell your 303SPH and buy the fisheye lens. Or you can keep it and buy the fisheye lens instead of NN5L. Both ways works fine.

    Nick



    Fanotec
    We listen. We try harder.
  15. Re: Ninja 3 or 5: Budget Constraints

    #15

    Quote Originally Posted by AllanADL View Post
    1. The NN5L - the complete package maybe from the estore which has a sale price of US $349.95 at present exchange rate that is about A$393.00 (Aust dist selling price is A$450.00)
    Regards
    Allan
    Hey Allan, The prices for all resellers seem high because they include GST/VAT/Customs fees etc. Because they buy in bulk after all is said and done it is cheaper to buy from them than it would if you went through the website.
    thx
    Bill

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