Real Virtue For Virtual Reality - Cullmann Pano Parts

on May 27, 2015

There are a number of manufacturers of panoramic accessories for modern digital cameras - Manfrotto, Novoflex, and Cullmann come quickly to mind. I'm sure there must be more, but as we have found these three to satisfy most of the requirements of the customers, these are the ones we have featured in the shop.

They all have their merits and charms - and in some cases mild drawbacks. Some designs suggest that the designers never actually carry their products themselves to do a job - at least not over a long distance. If they did they would reduce the weight, bulk, and complexity. There's probably a compelling argument for each additional feature that someone puts on the basic apparatus but unless you need that feature you are going to pay to haul it around...

Cullmann have adopted a different philosophy - their panoramic gear has been stripped down to basic form to follow basic function ( Say, that would make a good industrial movement. Must ring Weimar...). You can start with basics to just spin a camera round in one plane and then add standardised parts to bring different movements or camera positions into play.

Look at the basic L-set here - it's comprised of the Concept One OX369 panorama base. it screws onto a Cullmann Concept ball head - or to the ball head of another manufacturer - and clamps to an Arca-Swiss rail. Then it spins around on itself, much like a minor political party. Very well-built - very precise.

The A/S rails can be the sort of thing that is cast onto the bottom of a hand grip - Fujifilm does this for some of their X-Series cameras - or you can mate one of the Cullmann ones to your camera. These are available in various lengths. The L pair you see on the OX369 is the OX399 set.

Starts to look like you can mount the camera vertically as well as horizontally, doesn't it. Yes, you can, and you can do it straight or with another of the OX369 for a 360º virtual reality setup. Note the two unique Cullmann features; the clamping cross-bar to prevent camera twist and the clip-on socket at the end to take a Cullmann CX678 two-way spirit level.

This is good stuff on a technical level and also to a price point. The turntable is $199.95 (Available here) and the L bracket complete is $198 (Available here). Ten year warranty on both bits and in-store right now.