Panning and handholding big glass can be done with practice and proper technique, but at times, you are going to need a break. Enter a gimbal head. A gimbal head is a type of tripod head that has an arca quick release mount, adjusts tilt, pan and rotation as well as perfectly balancing the lens so it can be moved in any direction but still sit perfectly level when left untouched.
Many choices are out there for gimbal heads and each photographer has opinions on which ones work best. At them time of this post, Google returns 450,000 hits on gimbal heads. I did my research and narrowed it down to the original Wimberely Gimbal. I thought about carbon fiber, but as anything carbon fiber, it came down to price. The Wimberely is not cheap either listed at $595.00 USD, but as compared to carbon fiber head listed at $900 and up, it is a steal. I have good sticks to put it on and the Wimberely is tried and true. lets look at this unique head.
The head weighs 3.15 pounds and is crafted from anodized powder aluminum. It supports up to 150 pounds of camera gear and once locked down, it does not move. it supports arca type compatible quick release base and has soft touch knobs for easy use, even with gloves. Its elevated tilt mechanism and adjustable platform make the camera lens’ center of gravity and tilt axis of the head be perfectly aligned. Overall this is a must have accessory if you own a telephoto lens.
Update: I have since switched to the ProMedia Katana Gimbal. You can see my review of this gimbal head here.
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