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06-05-2019, 07:15 PM   #1
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What used Tripod head should I get?

Hi guys! My pan tripod head that came with my tripod I got a few years ago died on me and I don't really want to fix it because I don't really trust it. The main part of the tripod however is rock solid and I love it so I want to get a "new" head for it but I have no clue what's good. I do some minor video stuff, but it's mostly for photo work so the type of head doesn't particularly matter either, I just need something solid that's easy to get on and off and will hold my KP fine.

My price range is around 50-100, though lower would be better for me.

06-05-2019, 07:54 PM   #2
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Best tripod heads $50-100 - Google Search
06-05-2019, 08:00 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by jlstrawman Quote
Was looking for some personal favorites from you guys.
06-05-2019, 08:22 PM   #4
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I've been using this for a few years Slik SH-705E 3-Way Pan/Tilt Head 615-335 B&H Photo Video

I'm a pretty basic tripod user, though - I don't try to pan along with moving subjects or anything like that. The Slik has operated smoothly and perfectly with my K-3 II + battery grip + lenses up to 3kg.

06-06-2019, 05:18 AM - 1 Like   #5
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It's kinda big and clunky by today's standards, but I've used a Bogen/Manfrotto 3047 pan/tilt head for years. It takes the hexagonal quick-release plates and is sturdy enough to handle pretty much anything you'd care to mount on it. But best of all...they're cheap these days. With a little looking, you could probably pick one up for $20-30 on Ebay.
06-06-2019, 05:25 AM   #6
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I really like my old Vanguard head, bang for the buck it's excellent. Recently I've been using Sirui heads quite a lot, they do not reinvent the wheel but work exceedingly well. they have all the same perks and flaws as other brands at a lower price. Take a look at the K10x head which, despite being the smallest in their K line, is strong enough for just about anything I've thrown at it.
06-06-2019, 06:17 AM   #7
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I second getting a Manfrotto 3047 and yes they can be had for cheap. I paid $35 for one at a brick and mortar this past winter since I went and built a big super heavy duty tripod for astrophotography and needed a head for it. I liked the head so much better than the little ballhead on my regular tripod that I now move that old head between them as needed. I should probably see if the store still has a few more rolling around and just go buy them so I don't have to keep moving it from tripod to tripod.
06-06-2019, 07:30 AM   #8
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My Favorite is the RRS BH-55 ball head, but that is why out of your stated price range.

On another, lighter weight tripod I use a Oben BE-117T ball head.It works well for photos and it has panning capability
I use a K50 and K3 on regularly .

The only thing I don't like about it is the position of the slot for tilting, I'm right handed and tilting up steeply requires the lock knob to be on the left.

A minor thing, really. Runs about $90 at B&H

06-06-2019, 10:40 AM   #9
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One thing that should always come up when discussing tripod heads is plate compatibility.

Manfrotto is a big name and they have their own plates, which are only compatible with their heads and a few others who want to follow them.

A few "entry-level" companies(for lack of a better term) use proprietary and

Almost everyone else (I've read the number 85% but can't vouch for it) use Arca-Swiss. This means that you can swap heads, plates, get a cheap plate from eBay, use systems like Peak Design's Capture Clip, use your friend's tripod, without ever worrying that your plate and head will fit.

To me, using an Arca-Swiss compatible system isn't even a question.
06-06-2019, 11:07 AM   #10
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the OP might want to check this area of the forums out:

Tripod Heads - Pentax Camera Accessory Review Database
06-06-2019, 11:36 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by ZombieArmy Quote
Was looking for some personal favorites from you guys.
QuoteOriginally posted by luftfluss Quote
I've been using this for a few years Slik SH-705E 3-Way Pan/Tilt Head 615-335 B&H Photo Video

I'm a pretty basic tripod user, though - I don't try to pan along with moving subjects or anything like that. The Slik has operated smoothly and perfectly with my K-3 II + battery grip + lenses up to 3kg.
^ ^ ^

I have the same head that I use for video or for other cases where a ball head is cumbersome. Addendum: Panning action is fairly smooth, but requires a measured touch.


If I were in the market for a tilt-pan head, I would likely also consider:

https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/221363-REG/Slik_615_700_700DX_3_Way_Pan.html

...has higher capacity and more substantial base for smoother pan.


Steve

Last edited by stevebrot; 06-06-2019 at 12:07 PM.
06-06-2019, 11:48 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by bdery Quote
One thing that should always come up when discussing tripod heads is plate compatibility.

Manfrotto is a big name and they have their own plates, which are only compatible with their heads and a few others who want to follow them.

A few "entry-level" companies(for lack of a better term) use proprietary and

Almost everyone else (I've read the number 85% but can't vouch for it) use Arca-Swiss. This means that you can swap heads, plates, get a cheap plate from eBay, use systems like Peak Design's Capture Clip, use your friend's tripod, without ever worrying that your plate and head will fit.

To me, using an Arca-Swiss compatible system isn't even a question.
I tend to agree, but will note that many proprietary QR plates as well as traditional non-QR platform (1/4-20 screw only) may be securely mated to an Arca-Swiss clamp.

For a 2-way pan-tilt with Arca-Swiss (has flip-to-vertical hinge), this model may be worth considering:

Field Optics Research FPH-200 Pan Head FPH-200 B&H Photo Video

I use this light Arca-Swiss clamp mated to my Manfrotto MH-494 Mini Ball Head (simple platform) to add QR support:

https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/1028649-REG/desmond_dac_x1_level_50mm...lamp_with.html


Steve

Last edited by stevebrot; 06-06-2019 at 12:18 PM.
06-06-2019, 12:00 PM   #13
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I have a Sirui K-30x that is in excellent condition that I've been thinking about selling since I upgraded to an Acratech.
I'd probably sell the Sirui for $80+shipping, if you're interested, PM me.
06-06-2019, 04:43 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by TaoMaas Quote
It's kinda big and clunky by today's standards, but I've used a Bogen/Manfrotto 3047 pan/tilt head for years. It takes the hexagonal quick-release plates and is sturdy enough to handle pretty much anything you'd care to mount on it. But best of all...they're cheap these days. With a little looking, you could probably pick one up for $20-30 on Ebay.
I was about to recommend this very head. Used it for years until I switched to ball heads. The QR plate is very secure, but unusual - I don’t think many other heads use it. I have a useless extra plate laying around somewhere because I forgot to sell it with the pan head.

Last edited by monochrome; 06-06-2019 at 08:52 PM.
06-06-2019, 07:43 PM   #15
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I've used an Induro SA-23 Ballhead for about ten years, but I did replace the quick release system to be arca compatible a few years ago. I have 3 smaller Mefoto tripods that are arca compatible too. One oif those had a mini arca type system, I replaced that with the standard size also. I have a friend that is a gunsmith, he did a little machining on it to make it work. Now I have multiple tripods and several plates that are all interchangeable. The Induro head is very solid, but probably replaced by now.
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