Even if it’s entirely possible to take photos with the camera hand-held, the quality will be significantly improved if you use a panoramic head. Specific models now cost less than $200 and are very light and comfortable to use. So, let’s first begin with the settings of your camera and then we will review the essential tool, a panoramic head.
If you want to shoot the best panoramic photographs, then you have to prepare your camera for this type of shooting. First of all, let’s start with settings:
Set the exposure in M mode
You are the one who sets the exposure of your photograph, and it will be the same for all the photos you take. If your camera supports manual mode, then make sure to set it. It is better that all photographs have the same exposure.
For instance, if you turn on the fully automatic mode, then you will notice differences in luminosity.
Set the diaphragm around f8.0 / f11.0
This feature boosts up the depth of the field and in this cases, sharpens the focusing zone. This way, the corners of your photo will be sharpened and less dark, which is essential if you want to make an excellent panoramic photo. Some cameras automatically rectify the vignetting of the picture, but only if you are working in JPEG mode.
Focus with autofocus, then deactivate it
If you are using the panoramic software, then you should know that it doesn’t like the photos taken with different focuses too much.
Don’t always select the shortest lenses
You should keep in mind that the width of the panorama is allowed by the number of photos. You can take as many as you want, up to 360 degrees.
For example, if the building is too high, then don’t hesitate to frame upwards. If it doesn’t fit again, then step back, if you can, then you are allowed to use short focal.
The panoramic head
This is one of the essential tools for taking panoramic photography. It provides two very convenient features:
It allows you to place the camera on a tripod at the ideal rotation point; it is also called the nodal point.
It is secured on its rotary axis in order to turn your head precisely the number of degrees you need between taking two photos. There is no need to look at your viewfinders anymore.
You must be wondering how is this possible? Well, two slides all the camera to position correctly, so it rotates around the ideal point.
Which panoramic head to buy?
There are a lot of manufacturers on the market, and people often make a mistake when they go for the cheapest one. We would recommend you the models that stand out. For example, you can purchase Gobi Bushman Panoramic or Nodal Ninja 3 Starter.
They are both great for beginners, but also for professional usage. Considering that price point, you won’t be able to find better.