The new Ultimate M2 with the second generation RD8-II.  

In the panorama field, hardware is also part of the success. You can discuss here about it: camera, computer, pano head, anything
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Destiny
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by Destiny » Thu Dec 27, 2012 11:38 am

Thats a good price. Very affordable for most pano users.. A good review too..

I use my NN4 all the time as a tripod extension head, so when I use my D90 with 18-105mm to attempt to capture wide/high architecture, I would like to be able to tilt the camera down 5 degrees rather then 15 and again up 5 degrees rather than 15. The fact is, a 15 degree pitch is too much... I might do 3 rows of 10 images so what I have to do is remember a reference point on the building, and guess a 20/25% overlap.. The 15 degrees will not give me that so I have to tighten up the rail anyway, without it finding an increment to click in which I do not like doing..

Now I have my 14-24 I do not really have to do that when set to portrait, but it has little zoom so not good all of the time.. One row is better since it stitches better.. Its the same as capturing the images by hand. But difference is, I can bracket the images since its mounted on a tripod..

Destiny..
Primary School Teacher - Hobby Virtual Tours and 3D/360 Object/Product Photographer - Our aim is to create a 3D/360 Virtual Tour Shop/Store with links to 3D/360 degree products. My gear, VR Drive II - D90 - Nikon 10.5 fisheye - Nikon D800 with Nikon-Nikkor 14-24 - NOVOFLEX Magic Balance - Acratech GP Ball-head - Nodal Ninja 4 + RD-16 Rotor - Manfrotto 190CXPRO4 Carbon Fiber Tripod :) :)

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mediavets
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by mediavets » Thu Dec 27, 2012 12:18 pm

Destiny wrote:Thats a good price. Very affordable for most pano users.. A good review too..

That US$ 590 does not include a rotator.

I use my NN4 all the time as a tripod extension head, so when I use my D90 with 18-105mm to attempt to capture wide/high architecture, I would like to be able to tilt the camera down 5 degrees rather then 15 and again up 5 degrees rather than 15. The fact is, a 15 degree pitch is too much... I might do 3 rows of 10 images so what I have to do is remember a reference point on the building, and guess a 20/25% overlap.. The 15 degrees will not give me that so I have to tighten up the rail anyway, without it finding an increment to click in which I do not like doing..

You've lost me. What focal length are you using when shooting on the NN4 with your 18-105mm lens?

If you mount the camera lens in portrait orientation - which is what is intended with NN pano heads - the 15 degree fixed increments with locks on the pitch axis work firn for all lenses up to 100mm (35mm equiv.). You can adjust the 'base' value for pitch - "...the upper rotator can be installed with an offset of +/- 5, 7.5, or 10 degree from the horizon..." - so for example I have mine adjusted so that I can have a pitch value of -10 for my Nikkor 10.5mm FE, then moving up I have +5, +20, +35, +50, +65 and so on. That then supports a shooting pattern of 6-around at -10 and one or two up at +65; or a shooting pattern of 6-around at -10 and 6-around at +50 - which are the two shooting patterns I prefer with my DX body and the Nikkor 10.5mm FE.
Last edited by mediavets on Thu Dec 27, 2012 5:45 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Andrew Stephens
Many different Nodal Ninja and Agnos pano heads. Merlin/Panogear mount with Papywizard on Nokia Internet tablets.
Nikon D5100 and D40, Sigma 8mm f3.5 FE, Nikon 10.5mm FE, 35mm, 50mm, 18-55mm, 70-210mm. Promote control.

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klausesser
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by klausesser » Thu Dec 27, 2012 4:32 pm

Folks: there are some long-time hardcore panorama-cracks out there who use self-made manual heads of the rather primitive kind.
And they get phantastic and perfect results.

How comes? They simply know very well what they do!

So . . . . :D

best, Klaus
Simplicity is the keynote of all true elegance. Coco Chanel

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HansKeesom
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by HansKeesom » Thu Dec 27, 2012 5:50 pm

If nodal ninja had not had such a nice collection of tools, I would have made one myself ;-)
Regards, Hans Keesom
I stitch and render for other photographers. Price: 25 euro or less, no cure no pay. If you want to concentrate on your business let me do the stitching for you. Free TB of Dropbox space when you have more then 250 euro business a year.

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Christian Stüben
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by Christian Stüben » Thu Dec 27, 2012 6:30 pm

Destiny wrote:Yes, I have read about focus creep before.. So what lens do they use to capture this

To avoid lens creep you don´t need a prime lens, you only need a simple rubber tape. Tie it around your lens body, so that both lens body and focus ring are covered. So the lens can´t creep any more.

greetings from germany
Chris


See the blue rubber tape:
Image
---
always remember, the world is a flat disk.

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mc
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by mc » Tue Jan 08, 2013 2:02 pm

Klaus, I've been lurking reading your posts since March regarding the Panoneed. Glad to hear it's finally due this month.

Will it have environmental sealing? It sounds like the designer pays great attention to detail...that would be a helpful one particularly to keep dust out of any oiled gears.

Also, instead of allen wrenching everything, will it have arca-swiss compatibility?

Has he possibly thought of a spring loaded sort of clamp that would click into place and hold the vertical arm rather than having to use that screw every time it's assembled?

Which controllers will it work with? The same touch controller that works with Panogear and any others?

If you shoot 50 gigapanos on a long trip are all the XML files stored on this controller and then have to be copied off to the computer for stitching in Autopano? How many can the device store? Are the named sequentially so one could later match them up to the appropriate group of photos?

Thanks for any answers...I appreciate your time and look forward to more details, videos, how-tos or anything you may be preparing for the launch.
mark

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by klausesser » Tue Jan 08, 2013 3:50 pm

mc wrote:Klaus, I've been lurking reading your posts since March regarding the Panoneed. Glad to hear it's finally due this month.

Will it have environmental sealing? It sounds like the designer pays great attention to detail...that would be a helpful one particularly to keep dust out of any oiled gears.

Also, instead of allen wrenching everything, will it have arca-swiss compatibility?

Has he possibly thought of a spring loaded sort of clamp that would click into place and hold the vertical arm rather than having to use that screw every time it's assembled?

Which controllers will it work with? The same touch controller that works with Panogear and any others?

If you shoot 50 gigapanos on a long trip are all the XML files stored on this controller and then have to be copied off to the computer for stitching in Autopano? How many can the device store? Are the named sequentially so one could later match them up to the appropriate group of photos?

Thanks for any answers...I appreciate your time and look forward to more details, videos, how-tos or anything you may be preparing for the launch.
mark

Hi Mark!

Sealing: not to my knowledge. It´s built very fine and rigid, but sealing - guess it can be done in the case it´s clear against what you need to seal it. Using such a device in muddy, dusty or heavy rainy environment i wrap something around camera and head leaving just a small-as-can-be hole for the lens to look through. That always workes well. Usual rain isn´t a problem - if you can use the camera, you can use the head.
The gears are protected of course - to which degree they´re SEALED should be answered by Josef.
Arca:. there are customizable rails. When you order it with an Arca mount you´ll get it.
Clamp: the vertikal arm can be collapsed and fixed with a srew. That takes about 3 seconds . . ;) I actually transport it in a Peli-case with camera and lens attached and adjusted - ready to shoot.
Controller: basically it´s the same kind as for the Merlin but with another firmware. I guess it can be changed if you have a Merlin´s controller already. Will ask Josef.
Storage: 1000 XML-Sessions of 200 images each. They´re organized by date and time - this way they can be identified and matched to the pictures very easily.

best to you, Klaus
Simplicity is the keynote of all true elegance. Coco Chanel

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by gkaefer » Tue Jan 08, 2013 5:24 pm

klausesser wrote:Controller: basically it´s the same kind as for the Merlin but with another firmware. I guess it can be changed if you have a Merlin´s controller already. Will ask Josef.

I remember Josef told me that the normal T&C handcontroller (panogear package and used for single Merlin) is the same device. After firmware exchange (can be done by user) it cant be used anymore with the Merlin/Panogear.

Georg

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klausesser
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by klausesser » Tue Jan 08, 2013 7:20 pm

gkaefer wrote:
klausesser wrote:Controller: basically it´s the same kind as for the Merlin but with another firmware. I guess it can be changed if you have a Merlin´s controller already. Will ask Josef.

I remember Josef told me that the normal T&C handcontroller (panogear package and used for single Merlin) is the same device. After firmware exchange (can be done by user) it cant be used anymore with the Merlin/Panogear.

Georg

Hey Georg!

That´s what i meant.

best, Klaus
Simplicity is the keynote of all true elegance. Coco Chanel

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by mc » Wed Jan 09, 2013 12:39 am

Klaus, thanks so much for the quick and thorough response (and George too). I'm in a dusty environment where also discreetness is of great value. It appears that the Panoneed collapses into a neat rectangle which could hide away in a large backpack along with other gear. I expect the spring loaded click idea on the elbow joint is not what a brilliant but pragmatic engineer would think was necessary...it's what Steve Jobs would do though! It'll be on version 2 I bet. Tell Josef to not get mad at me but to think about it

If you reduce the number of sessions can you then increase the number of shots? I ask because I would hope to be doing near 180 degree panos with a Canon 400mm 5.6. That would take I believe hundreds of shots to complete and I wouldn't know what to do with two or three 200 shot sessions that needed to be appended together before going into Autopano. Unless that's easily done?

What really caught my attention initially with the Panoneed was that it has a motion sensor that can optionally be set to only allow a shot after it senses no motion at least as I understand it. It also appears to make lavish use of thick aluminum so it appears as if it would more sturdy than the tripod and could bear heavier loads than the Panogear. (I do hope the connecting point to the tripod can effectively stabilize 13 pounds that wants to rock back and forth as a 5d with a 400 swings around). It also appears that it would pack slimmer and 'cleaner' than the Panogear. What are some of the other 'selling points' that you think will help justify it's much higher price over the Panogear. Obviously as a hand-made over-engineered device there's no comparison so I mean in regards to function.
Thanks again for any comments and my congrats to Josef on his masterpiece.
mark

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klausesser
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by klausesser » Wed Jan 09, 2013 2:16 am

mc wrote:I expect the spring loaded click idea on the elbow joint is not what a brilliant but pragmatic engineer would think was necessary...it's what Steve Jobs would do though! It'll be on version 2 I bet.

No. One of the most significant points on a panohead is stability. You can´t have as much stability using a clamp than you have using a screw.
And i doubt very much Steve would have sacrified functionality for laziness ;):cool:

mc wrote:If you reduce the number of sessions can you then increase the number of shots?

I´m afraid you misunderstood ;) - of course you can have more shots in each pano anyway when you use viewer panoramas instead of 1000 (as a matter of fact it´s more than 1000!)

mc wrote:What really caught my attention initially with the Panoneed was that it has a motion sensor that can optionally be set to only allow a shot after it senses no motion at least as I understand it.

That´s right.

mc wrote:It also appears to make lavish use of thick aluminum so it appears as if it would more sturdy than the tripod and could bear heavier loads than the Panogear. (I do hope the connecting point to the tripod can effectively stabilize 13 pounds that wants to rock back and forth as a 5d with a 400 swings around).

Yes - 8-10Kg payload, 1-4Nm torque.

mc wrote:It also appears that it would pack slimmer and 'cleaner' than the Panogear. What are some of the other 'selling points' that you think will help justify it's much higher price over the Panogear. Obviously as a hand-made over-engineered device there's no comparison so I mean in regards to function.
Thanks again for any comments and my congrats to Josef on his masterpiece.
mark

The longer i accompany the developement of the head i must state: i understand now very well, what´s the reason for the remarkably higher prices of other commerciallly built heads . . .

best, Klaus
Simplicity is the keynote of all true elegance. Coco Chanel

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by mediavets » Wed Jan 09, 2013 1:34 pm

mc wrote:What are some of the other 'selling points' that you think will help justify it's much higher price over the Panogear. Obviously as a hand-made over-engineered device there's no comparison so I mean in regards to function.

Range of adjustment on both axes; ability to handle much larger and heavier camera/lens combinations; speed; precision, robustness...

Are those 'selling points' enough to be going on with (over and above those characteristics you have already identified such as the motion sensor)?
Andrew Stephens
Many different Nodal Ninja and Agnos pano heads. Merlin/Panogear mount with Papywizard on Nokia Internet tablets.
Nikon D5100 and D40, Sigma 8mm f3.5 FE, Nikon 10.5mm FE, 35mm, 50mm, 18-55mm, 70-210mm. Promote control.

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by mc » Thu Jan 10, 2013 9:43 pm

Thanks Kraus and Andrew for your responses. Kraus I'll concede...but we prefer 'convenience' to laziness. Plus Josef will need some new challenge to entertain him after launch. It does still look a bit awkward to stick fingers between sheets of aluminum to tighten it else always needing an alen wrench handy. They appear but I'm assuming there are ruler markings somewhere to help with nodal point issues?

Andrew, I see you have a Merlin but seem impressed with the Panoneed. Will you be getting one because the Merlin has just fallen short in various areas?

thanks, mark

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mediavets
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by mediavets » Thu Jan 10, 2013 10:17 pm

mc wrote:Andrew, I see you have a Merlin but seem impressed with the Panoneed.

I am impressed by the thought that's gone into it and because it's been designed and built from the ground up as a pro-grade robotic pano head and to overcome all the limitations of the Merlin (even after Josef's enhancements) and to match the capability of other fine robotic heads but at a lower cost.

The close involvement of a demanding pro photographer (Klaus) at every stage of development means it should be highly practical and versatile in use too.

Will you be getting one because the Merlin has just fallen short in various areas?

I doubt it but only because I'm just a poor hobbyist.
Last edited by mediavets on Thu Jan 10, 2013 11:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Andrew Stephens
Many different Nodal Ninja and Agnos pano heads. Merlin/Panogear mount with Papywizard on Nokia Internet tablets.
Nikon D5100 and D40, Sigma 8mm f3.5 FE, Nikon 10.5mm FE, 35mm, 50mm, 18-55mm, 70-210mm. Promote control.

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klausesser
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by klausesser » Thu Jan 10, 2013 10:28 pm

mc wrote:Plus Josef will need some new challenge to entertain him after launch. It does still look a bit awkward to stick fingers between sheets of aluminum to tighten it else always needing an alen wrench handy.

I don´t understand. I use the head now for about two years during it´s several developement-stages. The screw can be tightened in seconds and fixes the vertikal arm absolutely tight until you loose it.
Where the heck is your problem? Nobody who has ever used a robotic head and long lenses would switch from a screw to a clamp for fixing the vertical arm on a head.

mc wrote:They appear but I'm assuming there are ruler markings somewhere to help with nodal point issues?

What do you think?? This head isn´t a toy, man - it´s a professional piece of tool. OF COURSE there are ruler markings . . :rolleyes:

best, Klaus
Simplicity is the keynote of all true elegance. Coco Chanel

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by mc » Fri Jan 11, 2013 9:39 pm

Kraus, I'm a fan of the Panoneed because a talented pro photographer has been involved in the development and I'm grateful for your advice, insights and answers to my questions. I certainly didn't intend to communicate criticism of a device I've never used. But my Really Right Stuff PG-02 Pro Omni Pivot package is a piece of industrial art...probably there's a German engineer in that company. The PG O2VA has two beautiful knobs and both are quite effective driving the two clamps. There's always room for improvement which is the reason I use a Mark 3, not 1. Market feedback is also something that is seen my some companies as valuable in any form. But obviously the screw may be a stroke of brilliance in its simplicity and effectiveness. Personally I'm delighted there's no RRS style huge knob sticking out of the Panoneed. So they were really comments mostly said with a sense of fun and I'm sorry if they may have come across differently.

As for the markings I deleted that question for the reason you stated...but put it back in because the environment seemed so friendly.

I'll fade back into lurking and look forward to seeing the fruit of those 2 years of work.
mark

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klausesser
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by klausesser » Fri Jan 11, 2013 10:29 pm

mc wrote:I certainly didn't intend to communicate criticism of a device I've never used.

Hey Mark!

Please don´t get me wrong: no problem at all with criticism! In fact that´s what moves things forewards!
Regarding the mechanism to fix the vertical arm: Josef actually works on a solution to turn the vertical arm around at 180° after the last shot for doing a Nadir shoot downlooking alongside the tripod. From that reason a clamp
would be the wrong solution anyway.

Nothing against RRS - but the Panoneed is somewhat different under all aspects. It´s motors and (worm)gears provide a very high torque - and everything needs to be fixed very rigidly when it moves a heavy load . . . a big mass must be set into moving and stopped down to the exact position (0,036° precision on each position!). Here every part of the structure counts - and must not be irritated.

best, Klaus
Last edited by klausesser on Fri Jan 11, 2013 10:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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mc
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by mc » Sat Jan 12, 2013 1:15 am

Thanks Klaus. Josef is lucky to have you on the team. Can't wait for the product PDF and website or whatever is coming.
mark

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klausesser
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by klausesser » Sat Jan 12, 2013 2:06 am

mc wrote:Thanks Klaus. Josef is lucky to have you on the team. Can't wait for the product PDF and website or whatever is coming.
mark

Hey Mark!

I´ll keep you informed. We´re doing the last designing and texting actually.

best, Klaus
Simplicity is the keynote of all true elegance. Coco Chanel

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