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Author Topic: Camera stability with generic base plates  (Read 734 times)
Sebastian Boll
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« on: February 28, 2013, 06:11:20 AM »
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Hello there,

I'm interested in your experiences with the stability of (ball head-mounted) DSLRs on generic base plates. I've recently assembled a tripod system and am now struggling with only one (dreaded and well-known) issue: frame the picture, lock down the ball and the camera comes down slightly, requiring you to frame again. At least in my case, the culprit is clearly the connection between base plate and camera; I can easily and visibly move the camera relative to the plate by tipping on the front of the lens or even just grabbing it by the grip and moving it. Everything else is solid.

At first I thought this might be the fault of the plate that came with my Induro ball head, but I've now tried an RRS generic plate and the issue is the same, as it is when screwing the camera directly onto the tripod base. Is this is a problem that just can't be avoided? Do I have a bad setup? Or might it be an issue with the camera itself (a Pentax K-5)? Any thoughts on this would be much appreciated.

Best regards,
Sebastian
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markmullen
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« Reply #1 on: February 28, 2013, 06:36:56 PM »
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Rather than a generic plate I think you'd get better results from a camera specific plate. My 5D3 has a Kirk L bracket, I check it from time to time but it hasn't needed tightening up in the year I've had it and never moves at all.
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Ellis Vener
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« Reply #2 on: February 28, 2013, 07:47:36 PM »
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I've never seen that happen with any make of Arca-Swiss compatible plate I've used (Jobu, Graf, Arca-Swiss, Kirk, RRS, Induro, Foba, Acra-Tech, Sunway Foto). Are you sure you have tightened it enough?
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Ellis Vener
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Creating photographs for advertising, corporate and industrial clients since 1984.
Sebastian Boll
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« Reply #3 on: March 01, 2013, 07:02:03 AM »
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Thanks for your answers.

Rather than a generic plate I think you'd get better results from a camera specific plate.
I'd love to, but RRS and Kirk have stopped producing their L-brackets for the K-5, and I can't find anything else that would fit.

I've never seen that happen with any make of Arca-Swiss compatible plate I've used (Jobu, Graf, Arca-Swiss, Kirk, RRS, Induro, Foba, Acra-Tech, Sunway Foto). Are you sure you have tightened it enough?
Yes, any more and I probably would have broke something. What cameras did you use those plates with? Any APS-C-sized DSLRs?
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francois
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« Reply #4 on: March 01, 2013, 07:09:48 AM »
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I'd love to, but RRS and Kirk have stopped producing their L-brackets for the K-5, and I can't find anything else that would fit.


Sebastian,
Have you tried something like the Really Right Stuff Multi-Cam L Plate or the Acratech Universal "L" Bracket?

Edit: try to search on eBay too.

Edit 2: I have no personal experience with the generic L brackets mentioned above.
« Last Edit: March 01, 2013, 07:11:42 AM by francois » Logged

Francois
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« Reply #5 on: March 01, 2013, 08:34:22 AM »
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Are you sure it isn't the tripod mount on the camera that is loose? Have you tried any padded plates? Have you tried putting a  adhesive backed rubber or cork sheeting on one of your existing plates?
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Ellis Vener
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Creating photographs for advertising, corporate and industrial clients since 1984.
markmullen
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« Reply #6 on: March 01, 2013, 11:26:55 AM »
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I've not used one but there are Arca compatible L brackets on ebay for your K5

http://www.ebay.com/itm/FITTEST-FK5L-L-Plate-Bracket-QR-Pentax-K5-Body-Fully-Arca-Compatible-/170916359410
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Sebastian Boll
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« Reply #7 on: March 01, 2013, 12:25:02 PM »
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Thanks for the eBay links. I had already searched there, but for some reason none of those offers (not even the worldwide ones) had appeared on the German site.

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Are you sure it isn't the tripod mount on the camera that is loose?
Funny, I just tried putting in the screw without the plate and the bottom of the thread broke loose, despite me exerting only very moderate force. The thread itself seems to sit tight, but it's hard to tell for sure, and I'll certainly have it checked.

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Have you tried any padded plates?
Yes, the original Induro plate has some rubber texture, and it does seem to be superior to the RRS plate.

An RRS representative suggested to me flexing of the camera body might be the cause of the problem. I wouldn't have thought of it myself (this is supposed to be a flagship DSLR after all), but from the looks of it, it doesn't seem unlikely at all.

Any other K-5 users here who have experience with tripod-mounting?
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maxgruzen
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« Reply #8 on: March 01, 2013, 09:08:33 PM »
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I'venever had that happen with any plate/camera setup! Once you tighten it down its doesn't move. You have a warped plate or a bum camera bottom.
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