Specifically relating to the F5, I wonder if people use the arca-swiss ball heads, with the "really right stuff" plate attached to the F5.
Also, if you have a telephoto such as a 500 or 600, do you get the "really right stuff" plates?
These items are really expensive comparatively, but if they are really worth it...
I have a Gitzo presently, with a Gitzo head, which is a ball joint. It is a little "soft" though, so when I am pivoting (as if you are following a bald eagle flying past you), I feel this excessive movement. It is not a snug fit.
Divine inspirations, anyone?
P.S. I am close to buying the F5, but am looking at having B&H throw in an arca-swiss.
"Today is the tomorrow that yesterday you spent money like there was no."
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#2. "RE: Tripod stuff" | In response to Reply # 0BJNicholls Charter MemberSat 27-Apr-02 07:02 PM
Ditto on the "good luck"!
If you're doing a lot of photos of moving birds, look into a Wimberley gimbal or sidekick head. Kirk Enterprises also makes a gimbal mount. With big glass, this is the best way to have stability and tracking. No ballhead will allow such freedom of movement without getting too floppy.
All of the above use Arca-type plates and yes, the system is expensive but it works very well. The custom plates prevent any twist of the plate on your cameras and lensmounts. The plates are light and slim, so you can leave them on and have much faster setup for tripod use.
In addition to Really Right Stuff (RRS), Kirk Enterprises also makes high quality custom Arca-type plates for most bodies and lens mounts.
Look at the tripod discussions about the merits of various ballheads...
#3. "RE: Tripod stuff" | In response to Reply # 2longlens Charter MemberSun 28-Apr-02 03:38 AM
I have used the Arca Swiss B1 , with the RRS F5 plate for about two years, now on the Manfrotto Carbon 1 tripod. It is excellent, no problems. I don't do bird or flight photography, and the longest lens is a Nikon 300 mm(also w/RRS plate). I would buy the system again, but have not used the Kirk ballhead, which some prefer to Arca Swiss. The Kirk plates are similar to RRS, are slightly heavier. Hope this helps. Good luckl.