TRIPOD HEAD GUIDE




BALL HEADS


BH-55: The heavyweight ball head, top of its class in terms of lock-up strength.


Who's it for?

-Any photographer who demands the frame of a composition be preserved and resistant to drift and vibration under any circumstance.
- A fine-art photographer who shoots still subjects at slow shutter speeds for long-exposures.
- A landscape photographer who works in the elements with very narrow apertures for maximum detail and DoF.
- A product/food photographer who focus brackets using an ancillary macro slider.
- Any photographer using an effective focal length greater than 400mm on a fixed, unmoving subject.
- Astro-photographers and astronomers.
- Studio photographers who rarely move their tripod.
- Any photographer who does not mind managing a 2lb ball head for the sake of rock-solid rigidity and lock-up strength to obtain the sharpest image quality possible.

Best tripod union: RRS Series-3 tripods


BH-40: A lighter, mid-size solution which still features independent panning base and/or drag set control.


Who's it for?

- A traveling photographer seeking a lighter alternative to the weight of the BH-55, but still requires a robust head for stationary subjects.
- A photographer who will not use lenses that exceed 400mm in effective focal length, and if so, are agreeable to using higher ISOs and/or wider apertures in order to keep the shutter speed fast enough to avoid soft images resulting from lens vibration.

Best tripod union: RRS Series-2 tripods


BH-30: A small but robust ball head with an independent locking knob for the panning base.


Who's it for?

- A photographer primarily on the go, who barely stops moving longer than it takes to click a shutter.
- A travel photographer whose mobile support system must be balanced with ancillary pieces of gear and baggage.
- A street photographer who primarily shoots handheld but may need to use a tripod occasionally for portraits, low-light moments, scene setting, or cityscapes.
- A photographer working with glass no longer than 300mm in effective focal length.

Best tripod union: RRS Series-1 tripods


BH-25: An ultralight ball head for specialized small-gear support applications.


Who's it for?

- A vlogger with a simple, efficient table-top setup.
- A podcaster in need of an articulating mic head.
- A photographer using inconspicuous ‘pocket-pod’ support when shooting in locations that prohibit full-size tripods.

Best tripod union: TFA-01 Ultra pocket-pod




MICRO BALL HEADS


BC-18 & BPC-16: Surprisingly robust despite their extremely compact profile


Who's it for?

- Useful for cameras ranging from mobile phones, to compact “action cams” such as a GoPro, to point-n-shoots, to full-size cameras with prime and short zoom lenses. In addition, the micro ball heads can be used to support accessories such as monitors, mics, flashes, remotes, etc. The BPC-16 features a 360-degree panning ring, whereas the BC-18 does not, but has a stronger lock-up.

Best tripod union: TFA-01 Ultra pocket-pod, or an RRS Multi-Clamp




GIMBAL HEADS


PG-01


The PG-01 is a compact multi-row pano head suitable for creating panoramas with lightweight mirrorless bodies and smaller dSLRs with short zoom and prime lenses.

Best tripod union: RRS Series-1 & Series-2 Tripods


PG-02


The essential head for photographers creating stitched-frame panoramas; the full-size Pano-Gimbal head allows for both horizontal and vertical rotation to create a multi-row panorama image. In addition, the PG-02 is also a robust and capable gimbal for smoothly tracking moving subjects when shooting wildlife, sports, fashion, and portraiture.

Best tripod union: RRS Series-3 Tripods


FG-02


The Fluid-Gimbal head is identical in appearance, operation, and application as the Pano-Gimbal head, but features internal fluid-damping that provides for adjustable levels of resistance on both the tilt and pan axes. Ideal for cinema applications where delicate control of track/pan shots are essential, the FG-02 is still recommended for still photographers who desire a personalized feel of operation when shooting in different circumstances.

Best tripod union: RRS Series-3 Tripods