As you can imagine, we love tripod ball heads. The Platypod Pro base plate works with ball heads that don’t have oversized knobs. Here are a few ball heads that we recommend. Please feel free to contact us with any questions.

 
 

Giottos MH1004-320 Mini Ballhead

$14.99

Although the  Platypod Pro™ is designed and built for heavy-duty use, that doesn't mean that it can't be used with lightweight or compact equipment. This is an extremely compact, inexpensive and lightweight solution that can support up to 4.4 lbs. Attaches directly to a camera's 1/4"–20 standard tripod socket. Great for compact point-and-shoot cameras and included in our bundles for use with smartphones and tablets when combined with tripod mounts from Square Jellyfish (see products page). Can also be purchased separately at Amazon and many fine camera stores.

Check out our full review.

Giottos MH1303-210C Ballhead

$45.99

Like it's baby brother, the MH 1004, the MH-1303 also attaches directly to a camera without the need for a base plate. This is a much larger ball head, yet still compact and lightweight, capable of handling a full-size DSLR with a 24-70 mm f/2.8 zoom lens. Holds up to 8.8 lbs. Although priced very economically, it has the look and feel of tripod ball heads costing much more. Single knob controls tilt and pan action, allowing left or right-handed use (not, however, meant for panning shots of moving objects which would require a separate panning knob). Can swing to 90 degrees for vertical shots, but we would only recommend this with very small cameras. Larger cameras in portrait orientation would be much better served with a ball head utilizing an Arca-style clamp combined with an L-plate on the camera (see below).

Oben BE-117 Ball Head

$74.95

Good knob controlled Arca-style clamp and ball head with separate panning knob. Fits well in Platypod Pro™ case. When used with our spike-screws we recommend inserting the spike-screws first, then attaching the ball head to the Platypod Pro™ plate. Although the main control knob will clear the spike-screws, the lower panning may not. Once in place, the unit can be panned 270 degree, and we recommend that the photographer keep his/her hand on the plate for best results. This is the only ball head on this page that comes with its own Arca-style plate, and while the head can be swung over to 90 degrees, we still recommend an L bracket (see below) for vertical shots. Generously rated by Oben for 17.6-pound load capacity, but for really heavy loads we would recommend one of the more expensive units. Excellent bang for the buck.

Really Right Stuff. BH-30 LR: Compact ballhead with B2-40 LR clamp

$275

Compact yet extremely sturdy and fits well in our case with plenty of room to spare. The company claims a 15-pound load capacity, but it can probably handle more than that in our humble opinion. Very smooth three-position lever-operated Arca-type clamp. Finely crafted. Does not include a quick-release base plate, which must be purchased separately (see below regarding L plates). Again, this unit should be mounted to the Platypod Pro™ plate prior to insertion of spike-screws. Large ratcheting control lever/knob clears the plate and locks the ball head very well without the need for any tension control.

Somewhat expensive but well worth the price and seems to hold its value reasonably well at resale.

Arca P0 Monoball

$279.95

If you can afford the price, this is a beautiful heavy-duty head which works very well with the Platypod Pro™. It has no knobs on the lower three-quarters, allowing full movement even with the spike-screws in place. Control is provided by a knurled ring on the upper third of the head. Based upon an upside-down design, once the head is leveled at the top it can be panned 360 degrees without requiring any further leveling. On an uneven surface, this is the only type of head that can do this without buying a separate panning head. Weighing in at 10 ounces, it can handle a load capacity of 44 pounds according to Arca-Swiss.

 

Arca makes its own clamps but we recommend using this together with the really Right Stuff Check B2-LR-II Clamp ($120) as shown. You will also need an Arca-type L bracket (see below). All told, this Cadillac setup will run about $450-$500. There are much more economical ways to achieve similar goals.

Really Right Stuff BH-55 LR Ballhead (for Max only)

$455

Okay, this is the 747 jumbo jet of tripod ball heads! While not for the faint of heart or wallet, it will handle practically any professional camera gear you can mount on it. Sure and firm controls allow for solid lockdown of your heaviest hunkiest, chunkiest camera gear. This one is for the new Platypod Pro Max only and we practically designed our large plate around it. The BH-55 will spin on and off the Max with all spike-screws and the holder box already in place. This is one to use on your heavy-duty tripod for eye-level shots and on Max for low-level shots and tight spots. Coupled with an appropriate Arca-style L-bracket you would be hard-pressed to find steadier support for your camera equipment. 

L-Plates

For the most versatile use of your Platypod, we do recommend using an Arca-type L-bracket to allow vertical camera positioning. You might want to check out ReallyRightStuff.com for some heavy-duty L-plates, Sunwayfoto for some excellent yet less-expensive options or ProMediaGear.com for other alternatives. These companies make camera-specific models for the more popular professional models, as well as a few universal and adjustable plates. Again, you might want to read reviews and try before you buy with these products.

Belt Straps

Come in a Variety of Sizes and Fasteners. Here are a few we like:

velcrobeltstrap

AIRNIX Hook & Loop Cinch Strap

$6.50 - $7.75 : 18" - 40"

Comes in a variety of sizes and lengths (18" - 40"). Take a look on Amazon.

NiteIzeCamJamTieDownStrap

Nite Ize CamJam Tie Down Strap

$9.66 - $12.36 : 6' - 18'

This is your heavy duty strap in long lengths. Take a look on Amazon.