Top quality ballheads can support heavy loads, lock solidly, and move smoothly. All top quality ballheads are faster to use and inherently more stable than any 3-axis "pan-tilt" tripod heads. Aiming and horizon leveling can be accomplished as one instinctive motion, and rigid lockup takes just a quick twist of one control. The best ballheads also offer variable "drag" (tension) that makes them easy to control. Tripods with ballheads are also much easier to carry and pack than tripods with pan-tilt heads—no long, protruding handles.
At left is our BH-55 LR ballhead. At right is the Manfrotto 229 pan-tilt head. Tripods with ballheads are much easier to carry and pack than tripods with pan-tilt heads—no long, protruding handles.
The best ballhead will...
Be beautifully designed and machined.
Be super smooth; quick locking.
Be absolutely rock solid when locked and not "creep", even when used with a heavy lens.
Be relatively compact compared to competing products, but can handle greater loads.
Be faster to use and easier to transport than any 3-axis, pan-title type of tripod head.
Also, Really Right Stuff ballheads have...
A drag set knob with indicator scale. With the BH-40 and BH-55 ballheads you can set the drag tension you prefer
Dual drop notches to allow camera to be tilted 90° over into vertical or forward to shoot downward without repositioning the ballhead.
Exclusive drum and symmetrical progressive band brake to securely lock panning base.
Patented Really Right Stuff lever-release style quick-release clamps.
Custom padded pouch for the BH-55, BH-40 and BH-30, to protect the head from grit and dust.