Best Tripod Heads in 2022: Reviews and Buying Guide

best tripod heads

If you’re looking for the best tripod heads, there are many options. There are ball and gimbal heads, and there are also a few different kinds of heads.

If you want to skip the reviews, we say get the Manfrotto 502HD Pro.

Best Tripod Heads Reviews

Product
Benro GD3WH 3-Way Geared Head
Our Pick!
Manfrotto 502HD Pro
Manfrotto XPRO Magnesium Ball Head
Best Price!
SmallRig Mini Ball Head
3 Legged Thing AirHed Pro
Preview
Benro 3-Way Geared Head (GD3WH), Black
Manfrotto Video Head with Flat Base and Fixed Lever, Video Head for Compact Video Cameras and DSLR...
Manfrotto MHXPRO-BHQ2 XPRO Ball Head with 200PL Plate and Two ZAYKIR Quick Release Plates
SmallRig Mini Ball Head, Tripod Head Camera 360° Panoramic with 1/4" Screw 3/8" Thread Mount and...
3 Legged Thing AirHed Pro Lever Tripod Head - 360 Degree Arca Swiss Compatible for Heavier Cameras...
Individual Release Controls
UNI Safety Payload
Triple Locking System
QR Plate Screw
Supports Heavier Cameras
Individual Rotating Control Knobs
Robust Construction
2 Leveling Bubbles
360 Degree Swivel Tripod Head
Powerful Locking Mechanism
Arca-Swiss Compatible QR Plate
Fluid and Fully Adjustable
Polymer Rings
Tracking Progressive Panning
Arca Swiss Compatible QR-Octa Plate
3 Bubble Levels
Slide Plate
Magnesium Body
Aluminum Alloy
360˚ Panning Range
Product
Benro GD3WH 3-Way Geared Head
Preview
Benro 3-Way Geared Head (GD3WH), Black
Individual Release Controls
Individual Rotating Control Knobs
Arca-Swiss Compatible QR Plate
3 Bubble Levels
Buy now
Our Pick!
Product
Manfrotto 502HD Pro
Preview
Manfrotto Video Head with Flat Base and Fixed Lever, Video Head for Compact Video Cameras and DSLR...
UNI Safety Payload
Robust Construction
Fluid and Fully Adjustable
Slide Plate
Buy now
Product
Manfrotto XPRO Magnesium Ball Head
Preview
Manfrotto MHXPRO-BHQ2 XPRO Ball Head with 200PL Plate and Two ZAYKIR Quick Release Plates
Triple Locking System
2 Leveling Bubbles
Polymer Rings
Magnesium Body
Buy now
Best Price!
Product
SmallRig Mini Ball Head
Preview
SmallRig Mini Ball Head, Tripod Head Camera 360° Panoramic with 1/4" Screw 3/8" Thread Mount and...
QR Plate Screw
360 Degree Swivel Tripod Head
Tracking Progressive Panning
Aluminum Alloy
Buy now
Product
3 Legged Thing AirHed Pro
Preview
3 Legged Thing AirHed Pro Lever Tripod Head - 360 Degree Arca Swiss Compatible for Heavier Cameras...
Supports Heavier Cameras
Powerful Locking Mechanism
Arca Swiss Compatible QR-Octa Plate
360˚ Panning Range
Buy now

Benro GD3WH 3-Way Geared Head

Sale
Benro 3-Way Geared Head (GD3WH), Black
786 Reviews
Benro 3-Way Geared Head (GD3WH), Black
  • Independent movement in 3 ways - allows precise positioning
  • Individual release controls - allows larger camera movement for approximate positioning
  • Individual rotating control knobs - allows complete precision with camera positioning
  • Arca-Swiss compatible QR plate - compatible with other heads in Benro range
  • 3 bubble levels - assists in accurate levelling for precision positioning

The Benro GD3WH 3-Wall Geared Tripod Head is a versatile and easy-to-use tripod head that features a built-in bubble level. Made of magnesium alloy, the Benro GD3WH is lightweight, durable, and easy to adjust. It’s a great option for architectural and studio photography.

The GD3WH offers the fine adjustments of a pro-level geared head, but it’s priced well under $200. It also includes an Arca-Swiss mount for quick-release plates. This allows photographers to switch between handheld and tripod shooting.

Unlike conventional ball heads, geared tripod heads allow you to position your camera on a geared track, so you can easily level it. They also lock into place, which is convenient for precise alignment. This type of head also has two spirit levels and a quick-release system, which helps speed up the shooting process and minimize movement.

Another great option is the Manfrotto Fluid Drag System head. This head has counterbalances that prevent the tripod from swaying, and it also comes with a buttery pan for panning shots. You can also use the head for cinematographers as well, but you may need to adjust it before using it for still photography.

Choosing a tripod head is important if you want to take great photos. There are many different types of tripod heads on the market, and they all have different features and benefits. Choose the one that best suits your specific needs. For example, if you shoot a lot of wildlife, you may want a geared tripod head.

Before buying a tripod head, take a look at its weight capacity. The weight capacity of a tripod head should match the weight of your rig. Make sure you choose a sturdy tripod before making a purchase. You may also want to choose a head with a quick-release plate if you frequently switch between handheld and tripod shooting.

Manfrotto 502HD Pro

Sale
Manfrotto Video Head with Flat Base and Fixed Lever, Video Head for Compact Video Cameras and DSLR...
2,196 Reviews
Manfrotto Video Head with Flat Base and Fixed Lever, Video Head for Compact Video Cameras and DSLR...
  • UNI Safety Payload means your gear is safer than ever. We updated how we measure payload for this...
  • PROFESSIONAL: The 502HD PRO video head has a robust construction and is equipped with patented Manfrotto...
  • COMPATIBILITY: The Manfrotto video head is designed for compact video cameras and DSLR cameras. The slide...
  • TWO VERSIONS: The video head is available in a flat base version, which is this head and has the letters...
  • FLUID MOVEMENTS: Thanks to the sliding system, the pan tilt movements of the head are fluid and fully...

The Manfrotto 502HD Pro tripod base includes a wide platform for HDSLR bodies and a sliding plate for balancing the camera. This head offers smooth shots and fine control for up to 5kg of equipment. Its professional fluid cartridges on the pan and tilt axes make movement effortless.

This tripod head is available in flat and ball bases. It has a 75mm base and features patented bridging technology. It is ideal for shooting HDSLRs and compact camcorders. This head is compatible with a wide variety of lenses and is available in two versions: ball base and flat base.

The Manfrotto 502HD Pro tripod base is compatible with a variety of lenses and other accessories. You’ll be able to use it to capture beautiful photos or shoot HDR videos. This tripod head allows you to adjust tilt and pan, and its bridging technology ensures that it will stay steady even if you’re moving quickly or taking pictures. Its pan range is a whopping 360 degrees.

The Manfrotto 502HD Pro tripod base also features an integrated sliding quick-release plate. This tripod base offers easy connection with third-party tripods. This tripod head is compatible with both 1/4 and 3/8-inch screws. Its sliding quick-release plate is easy to install and remove.

Manfrotto XPRO Magnesium Ball Head

Sale
Manfrotto MHXPRO-BHQ2 XPRO Ball Head with 200PL Plate and Two ZAYKIR Quick Release Plates
  • Triple Locking System - 3 wedges enclose the sphere to guarantee camera position & stability
  • 2 Leveling Bubbles - for fine adjustments with the locking knobs open
  • Polymer Rings - no more messy grease while maintaining smooth and accurate movement
  • Magnesium Body - Lightweight & Extremely Portable
  • Includes - Manfrotto 200 PL Plate

The Manfrotto XPRO Magnesium Ball Head Tripod Head is designed to support up to 10kg and weigh just 520g. It features a large ball for stability and a grease-free polymer housing. The head is also equipped with two leveling bubbles and a locking lever. A safety catch prevents the head from slipping out of place when opening and closing the clamp.

Although the Ball head isn’t the smallest or lightest tripod head on the market, it is highly reliable and built from aircraft-grade aluminum. Its textured knobs allow for precise adjustments and ensure smooth panning. You can use this head to take stunning pictures of the stars or of your family.

This is a higher-priced version of the previous ball head, but it is lightweight and won’t add too much weight to your kit. Its smooth ball movement and locking levers ensure stability and ensure smooth panning. It is compatible with a variety of mount designs, including Arca-Swiss quick-release plates.

Besides the XPRO Magnesium Ball Head, this Manfrotto XPRO Ball Head will also come with a top lock. It is one of the world’s best tripod heads for videography and long-exposure photography. It is made in Italy and is compatible with Arca-Swiss plates.

SmallRig Mini Ball Head

SmallRig Mini Ball Head, Tripod Head Camera 360° Panoramic with 1/4" Screw 3/8" Thread Mount and...
  • 【UNIVERSAL COMPATIBILITY】SmallRig mini ball head features 1/4 " thread QR plate screw, 1/4 to 3/8...
  • 【360 Degree Swivel Tripod Head】 Ensure 360° panoramic rotation for panoramic shooting, -90°/+45°...
  • 【PRECISION PANNING BASE】The base of SmallRig ball head is finely laser-engraved in 5° increments...
  • 【ALUMINUM ALLOY MATERIAL】: Made of aluminum alloy, the Max load is 4.4lbs/2 kg, Very strong and...
  • 【HIGH STABILITY】: Low-profile ball head design creates a stronger locking force and higher stability....

The SmallRig mini ball head is compatible with most tripods and camcorders. It has a 1/4″-thread QR plate screw for tripod mounting, as well as a 3/8″-thread bottom screw. It has a -50-degree/+50-degree lateral tilt, making it ideal for shooting horizontally with your camera.

The SmallRig Mini Ball Head is an ideal choice for compact DSLR cameras, mirrorless cameras, smartphones, and action cameras. It can support up to two kilograms, and it features multiple angle adjustments. The tripod also features rubber feet for a secure foundation.

These tripod heads offer many advantages for filmmakers and photographers. Its Arca-Swiss plate provides easy hold for various types of cameras. It also features a mini ball head device, which spins 360 degrees.

This helps photographers to capture 360-degree effects and cooler angles. It is also great for taking panorama shots. These small tripod heads are easy to travel with, making them an essential tool for travel.

When shopping for tripod heads, you must consider how much weight you want to support. A heavy tripod head will add a substantial amount to your gear, so make sure to choose one that is lightweight but sturdy. The head should also be compact enough to accommodate your camera gear.

3 Legged Thing AirHed Pro

Sale
3 Legged Thing AirHed Pro Lever Tripod Head - 360 Degree Arca Swiss Compatible for Heavier Cameras...
20 Reviews
3 Legged Thing AirHed Pro Lever Tripod Head - 360 Degree Arca Swiss Compatible for Heavier Cameras...
  • The AirHed Pro Lever is a tripod head by 3 Legged Thing designed to support heavier cameras with an...
  • With the ability to support up to 40kg, the AirHed Pro Lever has a powerful locking mechanism that’s...
  • The AirHed Pro Lever gives precision cinematography and tracking with its 360˚ panning range, whilst the...
  • The AirHed Pro Lever has a beautiful, sleek finish, available in 2 colours with colour coded knobs to...
  • Here at 3 Legged Thing, we aim to innovate, inspire and be the best that we can be. All our products...

The 3 Legged Thing AirHed Pro tripod head is a compact, lightweight, versatile piece of photography equipment. It features a twist clamp, which is compatible with any 3/8” threaded device, as well as security slots and a bubble level. Its lock mechanism is easy to use and requires a minimum of force to lock.

The AirHed Pro has a load capacity of up to 88.0 lbs. The head can be attached to tripods with 3/8″-16 or 1/4″-20 mounts. A QR-OCTA Quick Release Plate is included for quick attachment and detachment. Using a push-and-pull lever, the plate can be removed without removing the head from the tripod.

Benro GX35 Low-profile Ballhead

Benro GX35 Three Series Arca-Swiss Style Low Profile Aluminum Ballhead with PU56 Camera Plate (GX35)
  • 35kg/77lb Max Payload Capacity
  • Dual Panning Ballhead Included - Aluminum Ballhead with Arca-Swiss Style Camera Plate
  • Ultralight Camera Plate - New lighterweight design.
  • Safe Locking Controls - Safety Stops prevent the camera plate from sliding off and the Pull & Twist...
  • 5 Year Warranty - 3 Year Warranty with 2 Year Online Extension

The Benro GX35 is a high-strength low-profile ball head that will offer photographers the strength and functionality they need. This product also has a 360-degree rotating platform and a streamlined design that allows for smooth camera movement. It also comes with a bubble level and a safety lock to prevent accidental movements.

The GX35 ball head is ideal for still-image photography, as it supports a payload of up to 35kg. It is lightweight and ergonomic, with controls that are easy to use. It also has a 30% increased locking strength, 360-degree panning, and dual panorama functions.

The Benro GX35 Low-profile ball head is an extremely affordable option for those who want a tripod head with a small profile. It weighs just 0.70 pounds and is 3.5 inches tall. It has separate controls for ball movement and panning, and a 90-degree notch for smooth panning. It also comes with a single bubble level.

Ball heads are also smaller, lightweight, and easier to use than traditional tripod heads. This makes them an ideal tool for traveling and lightening your camera gear. Whether you’re a landscape photographer, studio shooter, or video creator, you’re bound to find a ball head that suits your needs.

3 Legged Thing AirHed VU Tripod Head

Sale
3 Legged Thing AirHed Vu Tripod Head - 360 Degree Arca Swiss Compatible Tripod Head for Heavier...
  • The AirHed Vu is the first tripod head by 3 Legged Thing designed to support heavier cameras and longer...
  • With the ability to support up to 40kg, the AirHed Vu has a powerful locking mechanism that’s made from...
  • The AirHed Vu gives precision cinematography and tracking with its 360˚ panning range, with a detachable...
  • The AirHed Vu has a beautiful, sleek finish, with colour coded knobs to make them easy to identify during...
  • Here at 3 Legged Thing, we aim to innovate, inspire and be the best that we can be. All our products...

If you’re planning on purchasing a new tripod head, you might want to consider the 3 Legged Thing AirHed VU Tripod Head. This head is equipped with a 40kg load capacity and can be used with support systems that have 3/8 inch-16 mounting threads.

Designed to be easy to use, this ball head is available in blue or grey with orange accents. It weighs 323g and feels well-made. It has a ball release knob for precision control and smooth movement. As a bonus, it’s available in a kit with the tripod for a discounted price.

The AirHed Vu features an aircraft-grade magnesium alloy casing and is equipped with a 3/8”-16 threaded mounting system. It also has a vision panel and knurled knobs for maximum grip. An independent panning lock knob and security slots add to the overall convenience.

Vanguard Alta BH-250

Vanguard Alta BH-250 Ball Head
243 Reviews
Vanguard Alta BH-250 Ball Head
  • Never Waver – 3 independent knobs (easy-to-grip main ball lock, ergonomic friction control, and 360°...
  • Rapid - Intuitive positioning in a matter of seconds and Robust - Aircraft aluminum for lightweight and...
  • Precise: 2 Bubble levels and Smooth: Oxidization anodized surface
  • High Workload Performance – 44 pound safety payload for multi-gear options
  • "Arca-Swiss" quick release system compatible and a built-in safety pin

The Vanguard Alta BH-250 Tri tripod head is a great option if you want a lightweight tripod and a ball head. This Arca-type head weighs only 1.3 pounds and supports cameras up to 66.1 pounds. It also features a safety pin inside the clamp that keeps the plate from sliding out while partially opened.

The Alta BH-250 Tripod Head is also an affordable option and features a separate friction control. Its ball head is ideal for video and photography and is compatible with cameras that feature a 3/8″-16 hole and a 1/4″-20 adapter. It comes with two bubble levels and a safety pin.

This tripod head is easy to use and features three independent knobs for adjusting ball friction. The micro-adjustment fine-tuning knob allows for precise adjustments without having to use a wrench. It also features a locking knob for secure camera positioning. Moreover, it has a convenient lever for easy-to-grip adjustment.

ProMediaGear BH1

BH1 ProMediaGear Professional Ball Head with Arca-Type Clamp
9 Reviews
BH1 ProMediaGear Professional Ball Head with Arca-Type Clamp
  • ProMediaGear BH-1 Ball Head - ProMediaGear Limited 1 Year Warranty
  • Camera clamp knob
  • Camera mounting clamp

The ProMediaGear BH1 ball head is an essential item in a Professional Photographer’s Gear Bag. Unlike the average ball head, this one is CNC precision crafted in the USA with premium alloys and stainless steel for maximum durability. It is equipped with all the features you need from a professional ball head. And best of all, it is built to last for years.

The ProMediaGear BH1 tripod head features a quick-release plate with a locking knob that makes it easy to secure the camera. It is compatible with any lens and tripod and can easily rotate to a 90-degree angle. The BH1 is designed to work with any terrain and is an excellent choice for outdoor and wildlife photography.

The ProMediaGear BH1 Ball Head weighs only two pounds and is made of aircraft-grade aluminum. Its design is simple and easy to use with a large main locking knob and a rotating slot to rotate the ball.

It has a wide range of adjustments and many features that professional photographers require. The ProMediaGear BH1 Ball Head is also very sturdy, making it the perfect choice for long-term use.

This tripod head is more expensive than its predecessors, so it is important to choose the right one for your needs. The BH1 offers a 90-degree tilt in all directions. It also has a locking knob for re-pointing and leveling your camera. It also features an incorporated C60 camera clamp knob for secure camera attachment. Lastly, the BH1’s panning base provides flexible camera movement.

In addition to its superior design, the BH1 is also an excellent option for photographers looking for a tripod head that’s easy to use. It’s not as smooth as traditional ballheads, so you need to get used to it and be comfortable using it. A lot of tripod heads don’t include a friction mechanism to prevent the camera from falling forward when opened.

Tripod Heads Buying Guide

When it comes to tripod heads, you have many options to choose from. There are several types, from simple ball heads to more sophisticated pan/tilt heads. The first two types are commonly found on all-in-one tripods.

Basic models come with one or two adjustment levers, while higher-end models may have three or more. Pan/tilt heads are generally more accurate than ball heads. Some models even come with bubble levels built-in.

Tripod legs

Tripod heads are important components of a tripod. They provide lateral and vertical movement and extend the height of the tripod. They are also designed to support the camera. The head of a tripod allows you to multi-directionally move your camera, making it ideal for videography. Tripod heads come in a variety of designs and price points.

Choosing the right head is crucial to the stability of your camera. Beginners often make the mistake of choosing a tripod with a head that is too lightweight. In fact, tripod heads should be heavier than the weight of the optics.

Higher magnification lenses also require larger tripod heads. A light tripod with a lightweight head can cause the camera to sag, affecting the field of view. The amount of sag is not always apparent, and you will have to guess how much sag is present.

While tripod legs are the foundation of your tripod, the head is a crucial part of the entire system. The head is where your camera mounts, allowing you to adjust your camera and compose your images.

The different types of tripod heads are designed for different purposes. Some are used for still photography, while others are designed for video shooting.

Head Count

To ensure that you get the best possible photo-taking experience, it’s important to choose a tripod head that will work well with your camera. Fortunately, there are several different options available to suit different purposes. To help you choose the perfect head, here are some tips. First, always remember that tripod heads have different mounting screw threads.

You can use two main types of tripod heads: ball heads and geared precision heads. The biggest difference between these two types is their ability to adjust in both directions. Choosing a ball head will make your life easier and will be more convenient to use than a geared precision head. However, you should also consider the weight of your camera and the type of head you need.

A tripod head can be an expensive purchase. It is best to purchase one from the same manufacturer as your tripod legs. You should also make sure that the head is compatible with your camera’s mounting system. While tripod legs are essential, the head is even more essential. It’s the place where the camera attaches and allows you to adjust the camera.

Quick release system

When choosing a tripod head, it is crucial to find one that features a quick-release system. This type of system is used by many photographers and can make remounting a camera very easy. There are many different types of quick-release systems, but you should choose one that meets your specific needs. Some are universal and compatible with other models of tripods, while others are proprietary.

Quick-release systems usually come with two parts: a small plate and a mounting clamp. When a camera or other device is mounted with a quick-release system, the plate screws into a small hole in the tripod socket.

The tripod head then has a clamp that secures the plate in place. The plate can be removed and installed in a second step without undoing either part. Having these two parts together will save you time, and make it easier to take photos and videos.

Another factor to consider when choosing a tripod head is the maximum load capacity of the head. This is an important measurement because it tells you how much gear your tripod can safely balance.

You don’t want to overload your tripod as that can cause the entire system to topple over. Additionally, you will also need to consider the size of your camera body. Longer lenses have more rotational torque, so you will want a tripod head that is capable of handling this torque.

Tripod ball head

There are several factors to consider when selecting a ball head for a tripod. One of the most important is the amount of weight the head can safely support. A high load capacity will be required if you use long lenses or heavy camera equipment.

You should also consider whether the ball head has a separate panning knob or friction control. Some ball heads also have a ball lock which is useful if you need to control your camera’s movements on the field.

Ball heads are also easier to use and lighter than standard tripods. They are also very easy to transport and are ideal for travelers. They are also great for video creators, studio shooters, and landscape photographers.

You can read editorial reviews of tripod ball heads to find the right one for your needs. Once you’ve chosen the type of ball head that suits your needs, it’s time to consider the price. A ball head can be a great investment for your video creation and photography.

You should choose a ball head that can handle the weight of your camera and lens. There are models designed to support up to 88 pounds of equipment. A ball head that supports such heavy gear has a 360-degree clamp that allows for smooth panning. A ball head should also have an Arca-Swiss compatible quick release.

Three-way tripods heads

Three-way tripod heads add one more motion to a two-way head, making it easier to position an optical instrument. These heads work with most spotting scopes and other optical instruments. Another type of tripod head is a ball head, which is simply a head on a ball. This allows you to adjust the angle of your camera and head as needed.

Three-way tripod heads are useful when zooming or panning a scene. You can also use the zoom feature to remove the background from a shot by taking a long exposure. The head moves with the camera as it rotates, so zooming or panning is possible while maintaining a steady shooting position. A three-way head can also tilt sideways.

If precision is important, you may want to choose a geared head. This type of head is best for a studio or heavy kit. The locking mechanism on this type of head is a bit less secure. However, this type of head is great for long exposures and other types of photography that require high precision.

Fluid tripod heads

Fluid tripod heads are one of the most essential pieces of gear for a professional photographer or filmmaker. They are designed to provide the smoothest motion and offer precision control over tilt and pan.

A good fluid head will offer fine steps to counterbalance the camera and offer 360 degrees of pan motion. It will also have a level. Some cheap models don’t have this feature.

The Be Free fluid head is lightweight and durable, but its maximum payload is eight pounds (4 kg). Its aluminum body is lightweight but sturdy and comes with fixed drag fluid cartridges for tilt and pan.

It also has an optional pan bar for more control over tilt. If you need a fluid head for outdoor shooting, you can’t go wrong with this affordable option. However, there are a number of more expensive heads available.

The Benro S6 fluid head is a good value for the money. However, its knobs can be difficult to tighten, making it not the best choice for high-end professional work. This head is part of the Benro S-Series video heads and costs between the S and R-series. It doesn’t offer the same sophistication as the more expensive S-Series heads, but it does offer some benefits over the cheaper models.

Gimbal tripod heads

There are many different types of tripod heads on the market. Some of the more common types include ball heads, video pan heads, fluid heads, gimbal heads, and panoramic heads.

Professional grade tripod heads can cost more than a thousand pounds, and they often use clever engineering to ensure stability. However, if you’re looking to save money, there are plenty of cheaper options available.

Depending on your budget, you can choose from carbon fiber or an aluminum tripod head. Carbon fiber is more expensive than aluminum, but it’s stiffer and more durable.

Aluminum also comes in two forms: cast and forged. Forged aluminum is stronger and less brittle than cast aluminum, but it’s less rigid. Carbon fiber is lighter and stiffer than aluminum and has ten times more tensile strength than steel.

If you’re looking for a more affordable tripod head, consider the Arca-Swiss Z1 ball head. This is a very popular option, but it’s not cheap. It features a ball that rotates to allow the camera to tilt, move, and lock in any position.

Panoramic tripod head

The most important piece of equipment to get for taking panoramic photos is a special pano head. These heads bolt onto a tripod and take care of all the hard work, supporting the camera at the right angle for the best panoramic photo results. To choose the right pano head, check the following important features:

Ensure the head can rotate at least 90o to allow for vertical shots. A larger rotation can introduce greater parallax into the photograph. You should also make sure the tripod head includes a marked or notched rotary base to allow you to rotate the camera between shots and when changing lenses.

Generally, the best panoramic tripod head will ensure the camera and lens rotate around a “magical nodal point.” This magical point virtually eliminates parallax, a distortion that is difficult to remove from handheld panorama shots.

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