The first thing you need to decide when buying a monopod is whether you need a head. There are a number of different heads available, including ball heads, tilt heads and gimbals. While a monopod is a great way to take photos, having a good head can make the difference between taking a great shot and a bad one.
Ball heads are the most popular monopod head. They provide a wide range of angles and allow the photographer to make quick adjustments. Most models include a second knob to rotate the head in all directions. These are great for both beginners and professionals. Some heads also have a quick-release clamp.
Another important feature to look for is a ball head’s ability to support a long lens. A long lens can weigh a lot, so a head must be able to handle it. You should also consider the size of the setup. If you’re using a monopod with a small camera, you may want to look for a smaller diameter ball. This will reduce weight and increase stability.
Some other features you might want to look for are the ability to make pan and tilt adjustments. Pan and tilt heads are heavier and bigger, but they offer much more accurate adjustments than other types of heads. They are a great addition to a monopod and they’re ideal for panoramic photographers.
Another great feature to look for is a leveling bubble. It allows you to correct horizon lines for images that have a horizon in them. With a bubble, you can save time cropping and retouching your photos.
You’ll also want a head that has a locking collar. This will prevent your camera from moving as you adjust the head. Other heads include lever-release clamps, which are faster to use in the field.
One of the most well-known monopod heads is the Neewer. This model includes a non-skid handle, a 360-degree panoramic view, and a bubble level for balance. Among other things, it comes with Arca-Swiss style plates. Compared to other monopod heads, it has a sturdy, stable design.
Another great option is the Gitzo Monopod Head. It’s inexpensive and has excellent build quality. Plus, it can be used on a monopod or a tripod. It’s priced at $260 MSRP, so it’s a bargain. Even better, it can hold a 50lb load.
If you’re a professional or serious amateur, a high-end monopod can be a good investment. Having a leveling bubble on your monopod is a must, especially for panoramic photographers. It can make sure you don’t end up with an upside down or blurry image.
Finally, the Vanguard Alta BH-250 tripod head is a budget-friendly addition to your monopod. It supports 44 pounds of weight and includes a quick-release plate. That makes it easy to move the head down or up.
The only downside to this head is that it doesn’t support 600mm prime lenses. However, it’s a solid choice for many people, and its low price makes it an excellent value.