Looking for a light weight Ball Head for Gitzo GT1542T Series 1 Traveler 6x Carbon Fiber Tripod

Started Dec 15, 2012 | Discussions thread
OP Digitalshooter2 Contributing Member • Posts: 573
Re: Looking for a light weight Ball Head for Gitzo GT1542T Series 1 Traveler 6x Carbon Fiber Tripod

mosswings wrote:

Digitalshooter2 wrote:

All good suggestions. I have not bought the Gitzo 1542T yet but so far I have not liked any of other competitors. I know this lens may be a bit too much but rest of my lenses are much smaller. I plan to use a lens mount bracket with this tripod to balance it better.

What about Markins Q3t, RRS bh-30 or Photo Clam PC-33NS for this tripod and set up? Are they all smooth and fold completely well?

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You're smart to use the lens mount bracket.

I'll give an example from my own experience. I have that Feisol 3441S tripod and a CB30C (Feisol) ballhead. It works OK with my biggest combo, a D90 with 70-300 f5.6, but I can't set a good level of friction on it; the ball is simply too small to allow it. A 33mm ballhead will be better, but not by very much. A 36-38mm ballhead is a much better choice for this combo, because of the severe imbalance you get from the off-center lens torque. I can easily position this pairing with a PRO-38 or Sirui K-20X (note that the PC-33NS is an older model that is being replaced by the PRO-34). The RRS ballhead is a great one, but pretty small. Any of these smaller ballheads will hold your biggest lens if the weight is well centered and you're in landscape position. They just won't be as easy to operate and will creep at odd angles.

Of the trio you've suggested, the Q3T is the best fit for you if you go for a traveler style tripod. I'm not sure about the compatibility of the RRS head with a traveler style tripod. In any case, The Q3T is very well proven. The PRO-34 will be a very good head that will fit as well, but I'd try for as much ball diameter as I could...so that knocks it and the RRS out of the running. If you were mounting a smaller camera body than the 5D with smaller lenses, I'd say the 30-34mm ballhead would be OK; but if this is to be your primary tripod going forward, go as large as you can.

I did some more research based on comments by experts here and I am kind of leaning towards Q3T myself due to its better fit but what is missing in it and why would other folks here like PRO-34, K-20x or RRS-30 or RRS-40 be better for GT1542T Series 1?  Is it just the price?

One more questions:  For Q3T do I have to get RRS plates or Markins plates are good to use?  Why everyone is buying RRS plates?  Are they chaeaper than other brands or lighter or...?

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