Using a monopod??

Started Apr 11, 2013 | Questions
den did
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Using a monopod??
Apr 11, 2013

Do you use a ball head with a monopod or just mount the camera on top of it?

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newtoy
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Re: Using a monopod??
In reply to den did, Apr 11, 2013

Direct with L-plate and clamp only!

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Wyville
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Re: Using a monopod??
In reply to den did, Apr 11, 2013

den did wrote:

Do you use a ball head with a monopod or just mount the camera on top of it?

It depends a lot on the use. If you don't need to tilt a lot, mounting the camera/lens directly or via a quick release plate on the monopod is perfectly fine. If you do need to tilt, a tilt head is the best option. Some wildlife and sports photographers also use a gimball head, but that's really useful only with big lenses. A ball head is rarely done. Most find it too unstable, but some people like it nonetheless.

I use a monopod and tilt head for wildlife/bird photography.

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BackroadsTraveler
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Re: Using a monopod??
In reply to den did, Apr 11, 2013

den did wrote:

Do you use a ball head with a monopod or just mount the camera on top of it?

I use a monopod with tilt head (one direction of movement) extensively. The tilt comes into play with semi-macro work, and when trying to shoot from low angles, but allows me to keep the stability of the monopod.

If I couldn't have the tilt head, however, I'd still use the monopod with camera attached directly to base.  You just limit yourself somewhat with that set up.

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afoton
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Re: Using a monopod??
In reply to den did, Apr 11, 2013

I use a ball head on my monopod. I like that much better than a 2 ways tilt head.

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hotdog321
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Re: Using a monopod??
In reply to den did, Apr 11, 2013

I use a monopod with a unidirectional tilt head, NOT a ball head. Especially if you ever plan to use a massive lens like a 600 f/4 or 400 f/2.8. Years ago I bought a really massive Gitzo ball head and it just flat could not support a really big lens. It would slip out of position no matter how hard I torqued it down. Finally the expensive ball head split on the side and was ruined!

Furthermore, a ball head tends to allow the monopod or camera to flop wildly if it is loose, endangering yourself and anyone else around you! I've been using a Manfrotto tilt head with quick release plate for 15 years and never looked back.

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irvweiner
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Re: Using a monopod??
In reply to hotdog321, Apr 12, 2013

Simple and rugged, after several decades, I have settled into the Manfrotto 680B monopod with the 678 folding base and a Markins ballhead. The 678 has 3 legs mounted on a short tube 'set-screwing' around the monopod leg. The 3 leg assy fits inside the monopod leg and can be released, spread open and remounted giving a monopod with short tripod legs.

This setup is invaluable for removing the weight of a long tele/zoom off my arms and shoulder--and allows me to permit the 3 legged monopod to stand upright without support when I need to remove a lens, memory card or trail snack from my camera bag. Think: No Hands

For wildlife or pano/landscape photography the camera literally floats. The Markins ballhead smoothly lets me track wildlife in motion or precisely frame a multi array 'pano'--And locks rock tight without creep. Mount a standard cork ball on the monopod and enjoy the benefits of a rugged hiking 'stick'!   The monopod setup will set you back <$100, my Markins is not included since it also lives on my real tripod--but not very often now.

good luck  irv weiner

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afoton
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Re: Using a monopod??
In reply to hotdog321, Apr 12, 2013

hotdog321 wrote:

Furthermore, a ball head tends to allow the monopod or camera to flop wildly if it is loose, endangering yourself and anyone else around you!

On a monopod, that is no problem, as I always have a hand on the camera

But on a tripod, this can be a real problem, and that is why I allways check that the ball is securely locked down before I leave a camera on a tripod.  If it was not so heavy, I would prefer a solid three way head on tripod, but I use ball head there also (just because of the weight).

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hotdog321
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Re: Using a monopod??
In reply to afoton, Apr 12, 2013

Oh, it can be a real problem if you are hustling up and down the sideline at a football game! Nothing like whacking somebody with a floppy 5 or 6' aluminum pole to win friends and influence people!

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afoton
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Re: Using a monopod??
In reply to hotdog321, Apr 12, 2013

hotdog321 wrote:

Oh, it can be a real problem if you are hustling up and down the sideline at a football game!

OK. Life is too short to be used at a football field, so I don't have that problem

There was a tilt head (Sirui L-10) on my monopod, but I didn't like it. And I had a cheap, but sturdy ball head that worked a lot better to my taste. The pano base on this ball head was not working well, so it was unusable on a tripod anyway.

For me it is all about what do the job for me. I don't know what will work for OP, but he was just asking what each of us use.

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hotdog321
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Re: Using a monopod??
In reply to afoton, Apr 12, 2013

Agree completely. I was just pontificating and sharing my experiences.

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