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Welcome to the GigaPan Forum!

This is the place for Gigapan.com members to offer peer-to-peer support for exchanging tips, ideas, comments, etc.

Those who need direct technical assistance with their GigaPan EPIC Series imagers, stitching software or gigapan.com membership account should contact us.

Forums » General Gigapanning » Tripod Poll

Tripod Poll
Tim Smith Tim Smith
Total Posts: 8

I’m in the market for a good, sturdy tripod to mount my Epic 100 and D90 on. I’ve been “window shopping” past week or so and my head is pinning with so many options including Manfrotto, Dolica, Slik, etc. I’d like to hear from anyone with similar setups and what kind of experiences you’re having. I don’t think I need a fancy head and would probably be satisfied even with a simple plate to mount the Epic 100 on…and level it with the leg adjustments. Thanks!

Tom Nelson Tom Nelson
Total Posts: 49

If you can find a used wooden tripod on eBay, they’re cheap and very sturdy. Here are some ideas for homemade mounts:
You might be especially interested in the triangle mount. Most of my vacation panos are done with it.

Tim Brown Tim Brown
Total Posts: 54

After years of using a crappy lightweight tripod I finally bought one of these:
http://www.amazon.com/Slik-400DX-Tripod-Quick-R… I’ve been very happy with it. quite sturdy, not too heavy or expensive. Seems to work fine even with my Epic Pro.

Peter Mills Peter Mills
Total Posts: 1

I have a 190XB manfrotto tripod that I’m quite happy with. It has a 486RC2 ball head which I find really convenient for levelling but it’s kind of like balancing on the end of a stick – looks wonky but seems to work. With my pro I have had vibration issues in high wind environments such as in the mountains but I suspect that would be the case with most anything. I suggest take your unit to a reputable camera store and try it on several in the store – they’d probably love to see it!

Phil Hotten Phil Hotten
Total Posts: 21

I used to use a cheap $90 tripod. I have since purchased a Velbon Rexi http://www.velbon.co.uk/products/photo/ultra_RE…. I dont use a head other than the gigapan

John Opie John Opie
Total Posts: 25

Hi -

I have an ancient Gitzo Reporter that I used with my Epic 100 (and the beta unit), but moved to a Manfrotto 028b with a very large ball head from Manfrotto (from my view camera days…) when using the Gigapan Pro. The 028b is fairly large, but I’ve carried it all day in NYC doing gigapans and it was eminently carryable. It extends well above my head without extending the central column and gives me that extra bit of extension that really helps…the cost isn’t too outrageous, as it uses aluminum rather than carbon or other exotic materials, but it is extremely solid and hence an excellent performer with the Gigapan Pro…


Tim Smith Tim Smith
Total Posts: 8

Thanks very much all. Good info. I had thought about a surplus surveyors tripod….don’t need a fancy head if the legs are easily adjustable but again, I’m for easy too. I shot a pan yesterday in about 15-20 mph wind on a cheap (but old) Star tripod with a 30 pound counterweight. The legs were planted well but the rack and pinion column had a little movement. Keeping an eye on Craigslist. Happy Holidays!

Mattapoisett, MA

David Zakary David Zakary
Total Posts: 18

I’ve got a Manfrotto I’m pretty happy with. I need to gat a better head for it though. The current one won’t support the Epic Pro particularly well. Anyone have any suggestions on a good head. Usually shooting with a 70-200 2.8 on a D300.

Terry Foss Terry Foss
Total Posts: 16

I have been quite happy with my Acratech Ultimate Ballhead. It supports the Epic Pro with a D200 just fine. Easy to level the Epic Pro. Also a nice general purpose head.

Uri Fans Uri Fans
Total Posts: 21

Thanks Terry Foss. I had never heard of Acratech. Although more than I would like to pay ($290, unless you know where to get a lower price), it does seem the best priced head that can support the weight of the Pro, camera, and a long lens.

Aloysious A Gruntpuddock Aloysious A Gru...
Total Posts: 29

Having used surveying tripods I tend to treat ‘photographic’ tripods with some disdain. When leveling, I was used to getting 1mm accuracy at 30m, even in windy weather. Once surveyed about 2km over rough terrain with a closing error of less than 10mm.
You can get used ones for around £30 off ebay. They are relatively heavy (even the aluminium ones), but they are rock solid.

Uri Fans Uri Fans
Total Posts: 21

“When leveling, I was used to getting 1mm accuracy at 30m, even in windy weather”

That’s terrific, but it seems overkill for panos, given the amount of overlap.

“They are relatively heavy (even the aluminium ones)”

No kidding. I can’t imagine taking one on vacation. It would also take up a lot of room in the car on a driving vacation.

Forums» General Gigapanning » Tripod Poll