panorama software,virtual tour software
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Joined: 2009-06-02
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2009-07-26
#1

Tripods & Nadirs?

Ok, next dumb questions) And yes, anytime I am learning something new, I CRINGE when I read it years later, thinking, dang, why was I so dense?! lol It takes awhile of repeated answers to build the neuron connections....well, that's my story and I am sticking to it! ;)

I saw the 10 minute pano video from 360precision (expensive head!) and the guy casually takes the nadir shot handheld. I read various stuff about tripods needing small footprints to minimize interference, then I see this expensive carbon fiber tripod with a carbon arm that can be set horizontal. A mere $500 or so dollars! lol. Manfrotto has their version for around $180.

I have also heard that any semi-cheesy tripod that isn't put in a breeze will do, so i am in tripod acquisition mode right now.

One would think that the nadir shot needs to be perfectly straight down and shot at the same height as the horizontals, but I guess the software must resolve that otherwise people would not be shooting nadirs hand-held. Anything I should know about when shooting the nadir hand--held?

Or are these tripods with an center post that can articulate over to the horizontal the cats meow for shooting nadirs?

The other issue for me is the tripod weigh. I am already overweight on both checked bags, so get stuck with those fees, PLUS a 3rd checked bag, which costs a mere $350 USD these days. NOW add a D300, 2 lenses, a pano head and a heavy tripod, and there goes the 4th checked bag, another $350 round trip :( What a bargain! lol

So tripod weight is an issue, so I am open to suggestions.




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2009-07-26
#2
Firstly the 360P brand is a total waste of money. Whilst nicely made, they are not required and heavily over priced.

Shooting hand held (nadir) for stitching with Panoweaver requires you to be as close to -90 degrees at the same height as possible. Other software (PTGui Pro only) allows for an offset hand held nadir shot and can be stitched in with the Viewpoint offset feature (once you know how!).

Using a tripod with a tilting centre column is useful for Panoweaver but you will need a counter weight and locking Panohead.

Keep in mind that you can convert your panorama image to cube faces and this will help you position a hand held nadir shot with layers in Photoshop. This also is where having the smallest possible tripod/panohead nadir is of value and why shooting -15 degrees with the Nikkor 10.5mm fisheye is a better shooting method.

Obviously for weight Carbon Fibre tripod will win in this case. All your camera gear if packaged correctly should be part of your carry on hand luggage.

Regards, Smooth
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2009-07-26
#3
In my hand carried luggage, which is WAY overweighted, I carry more of the underwater HD video production gear.....Now I can add the D300 and lenses to that backpack, which already has no room.

I have taken to using cargo pants and a photographers vest, and I put tons of equipment in that, then once past the knucklehead who gets off on weighing carry-ons, I take it all out and put it back into the backpack.

Below is the Manfrotto whose center column can be rotated horizontal for a nadir shot.
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2009-07-26
#4
Quote: Originally posted by EBMN on July-26-2009

Below is the Manfrotto whose center column can be rotated horizontal for a nadir shot.



Know it well, I have one - Manfrotto 190XPROB.
There is also a big brother the 055XPROB from memory.

Regards, Smooth
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2009-07-27
#5
I guess one needs to adjust the legs on that tripod to get the bubble level...
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2009-07-27
#6
You won't be concerned with the onboard tripod bubble level. The one you need to concern yourself with is the one on the Panohead. You level this up at position 1 (0 degrees) and leave the level alone for the complete panoramic shoot. You do not re-level between shots.

As for the actual levelling you have multiple options. Yes, you can use the legs. Or you can add a self levelling centre column. Or introduce a quick leveller like the Manfrotto #222 Pistol Grip, Manfrotto #322RC2 Action Grip, Fanotec E-Z Leveller and the list goes on and on.

Regards, Smooth
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2009-07-29
#7
I broke down and got the carbon fiber version of this Manfotto tripod as it weighed quite a bit less, which for checked baggage is a big deal these days.