Tripod Heads

Two week ago I wrote about tripods and why you should use them. Today I am writing about tripod heads. There are many different kind, ball head, fluid heads, gear heads, etc. 

I am not going to cover all of them today, just two that I use regularly.

  1. Ball Head

A ball head is simple a ball in a socket.  This means that they are easy to use.  They are good for sports and wildlife photographers.


  • Easy to use
  • Light
  • Smooth Movement
  • Small Size


  • Not precise

I absolutely love my gear head for real estate, macro and landscape photography.  I have the Manfrotto MHXPRO-3WG which is a three-way geared tripod head.  This means you have precise control on each axis – x/y/z.


  • Precision adjustments
  • General stronger head, meaning heavier cameras
  • Clutch for large movement, gears for smaller
  • Resistant to dust


  • Big and bulkier than ball heads
  • Require more adjustments than ball head

Just a few thoughts on these.  I have both and use both, really depends on what I am shooting.  On a final note, the quick release is very important.  Because both of my heads are Manfrotto I made sure they both use the same quick release mount for I could easily move from one tripod to the other.

Happy snapping!

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