A Panning Head is used to shoot panoramas, a series of photos that overlap to digitally stitch them together for wide dramatic scenes.
Just when I thought there wasn’t much out there in the market, a little research proved that wrong.
As an alternative and on the cheap and cheerful side I tested the Manfrotto 804RC2 Pan Tilt Head with Quick Lock. I still maintain the quality and value for that product, but I was missing the simplicity and set up speed of the ball head. I’ve been using a ball head for sometime, but without the panning feature.
I just ordered the Photo Clam from Seoul, South Korea via eBay, more specifically the PC-40NS Black Photo Clam. Seems not a lot of major retailers have caught onto to this yet, not even B&H. The PC-40NS is rated to hold up to 35 kg (77 lbs) and other models well over 90 kg (200 lbs). Photo Clam is known for it’s super smooth movements and secure locking, I’m looking forward to testing this product.
With the lack or retail support in North America on the date of this article, eBay served the purpose with a Power Seller rated supplier where you could knock the “Buy Now” price down a little with counter offers.
Photo Clam Features
- Easy to handle plate clamp. A knob on the side of the quick shoe, allows for easy handling of the plate clamp.
- Powerful Main Ball . Load capacity of the ball is key. The ball head is secure and holds at any angle. No slipping or distortion.
- Ultimate Multi-Functional Grip. Main handle has a dial with a scale from 1 to 12. Allows for free movement of the ball head. Turning the dial knob clockwise, friction increases, locking the ball head into position.
- Secret function / Control Screw. By turning the screw with the tip of your thumb, minimum friction force is set, allowing the multi-functional grip to be loosened to the set position.
- One Touch Safety Button. One-touch slip stopper at the bottom of the Quick Shoe secures your camera and guards against accidental detachment and mishaps.
- Tripod Connecting Socket. Under the ball head, the 3/8″ socket is industry standard and compatible with most tripod brands.
- Designed to handle extreme outdoor weather conditions.
- Perfect alignment with two built-in spirit levels.
- Compatible with most camera brands and sizes.
- Optimal adjustments, secure and precise positioning with friction screw adjustments.
- Offers exact degrees of precision for 360 horizontal pans with the panoramic base and locking knob.
Industry standard 3/8″ female thread on the base, mounts to most tripod brands like Manfrotto, Gitzo, Velbon, Slik and more.
For mounting your camera or lens, you will need a double dovetail (aka Arca-Swiss) type of quick release plate.
- Buy a standard size plate which will fit practically any camera or lens system with ease and stability.
- For utmost security, stability and aesthetic integration, buy one of the Photo Clam camera-specific enginereed quick release plates. These plates are custom fitted to the body of the particular model of camera you own, ensuring the most secure connection between tripod head and camera.
PS. By the time I completed writing this, a twist. More to come…
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