2 new from CDN$ 736.32

Vanguard SBH-30 Lightweight Magnesium Alloy Ball Head

3.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

Available from these sellers.
2 new from CDN$ 736.32
  • Precision-cut with safety lock and 360
  • Extremely lightweight
  • Strong aluminum alloy
  • 40 mm plate to support various sized equipment
  • Great for use with monopods and tripods

Product Details

  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 10 x 7 cm ; 372 g
  • Shipping Weight: 386 g
  • Item model number: SBH-30
  • ASIN: B003G2YZ4G
  • Date first available at Amazon.ca: Feb. 18 2013
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #125,959 in Electronics (See Top 100 in Electronics)
  •  Would you like to give feedback on images or tell us about a lower price?

Product Description

Vanguard SBH-30 Lightweight Magnesium Alloy Ball Head



Customer Questions & Answers

Customer Reviews

3.0 out of 5 stars
5 star
1
4 star
0
3 star
0
2 star
0
1 star
1
See both customer reviews
Share your thoughts with other customers

Top Customer Reviews

Verified Purchase
Love Vanguard products. As always, you get what you pay for, and with Vanguard , I was never disappointed.Michel, Quebec city
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again.
Report abuse
Verified Purchase
never buy this item. can't give opinion. it should have never be here for rating.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again.
Report abuse

Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0x9cc33f48) out of 5 stars 19 reviews
26 of 26 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9cc6a7bc) out of 5 stars Outstanding! Vanguard SBH-30 for a monopod! Oct. 15 2010
By Webtrance - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
Hi all! Here's a quick review of the Vanguard SBH-30 ball head.

The main reason I bought this ball head was for the compatible quick release (QR) plate. It uses the QS-39 QR plate that attaches to your camera and is the same plate that most of the SBH series ball heads use. Those are the SBH-30/50/100/250.

I have an SBH-250 on my tripod, so I wanted a ballhead on my monopod that uses the same QR plate. The SBH-30 makes a superb monopod head. If you view the image gallery, you can get a good idea of it's size and compatibility with monopods, as well as it's size compared to the larger SBH-250.

At just over 3" tall, it's barely larger than the Induro TH-S and Manfrotto 234RC monopod tilt heads. Perfect for monopods as it gives you so much more control over your shooting. Granted, ball head movement on a monopod is a little overkill, though to me, a tilt head is too restrictive in movement. I'd rather have full ball head control. Also, the ball head is light! Just over a half pound or .27kg.

Some of the reviews at B&H were skeptical and made the ball head out to be less secure than the competition. Well, I'm here to tell you that the head easily supports 11 lbs / 5kg and is just as secure as my SBH-250 ball head. If you look at the pictures, you'll notice a "stop" or bumper on the top plate where you slide the QR into. This makes it very easy to slide your camera in/out of the ball head and quickly secure your camera with a twist of the tightening knob. Even when the QR is slid into place, there's virtually no movement (1/16" of less), even if the tightening knob isn't adjusted tightly. Needless to say, the safety pin/catch does it's job well.

I now use the SBH-30 as the head on my Induro CM14 carbon fiber monopod. Induro Carbon 8X Monopod CM14 (Black) It does a fantastic job holding my gear. I'll easily support a D90 with 70-200mm f/2.8 and you can throw a SB600/800 on there as well.

Would I use this on a tripod? Maybe as a travel head, but that's why I have the SBH-250 for my tripod. It's larger, holds more weight, and it's generally more solid. Vanguard SBH-250 Magnesium Ball Head with Sliding Quick Shoe But as a monopod head, the SBH-30 is Fantastic!

Bottom line: The Vanguard SBH-30 makes a wonderful monopod head or could be used with a small lightweight tripod for smaller cameras such as the Nikon D40/60 or Cannon Rebels and even works with my D90. As a monopod head, I'd feel comfortable using it with a Nikon D700 and below or Cannon 5D MarkII or below with various long/heavy lenses.

I hope this short review helped you with your monopod/tripod head search!

Take care!

- Web
18 of 23 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9cc6e75c) out of 5 stars Great solid lightweight ball head that is an excellent choice for use on a travel-sized tripod or monopod! July 23 2010
By ƒůℤźϔ ωൠ≥ζŷ ♥☮♭♩♪♫♬♮☯☺♡✈ - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
இ Fuzzy Wuzzy's Summary:
ѾѾѾѾѾ Highly recommended with warm fuzzies!

► Packaging, Style, Appearance: ѾѾѾѾѾ Excellent 5-fuzzies rating
► Design & Features: ѾѾѾѾѾ Excellent 5-fuzzies rating
► Ergonomics, Usability & Ease of Use: ѾѾѾѾѾ Excellent 5-fuzzies rating
► Construction & Build Quality: ѾѾѾѾѾ Excellent 5-fuzzies rating
► Performance, Stability, Reliability: ѾѾѾѾѾ Excellent 5-fuzzies rating
► Competitive Pricing & Value: ѾѾѾѾѾ Excellent 5-fuzzies rating

փ Positives:

փ High-quality low-weight magnesium alloy construction.
փ Smooth and fluid ball head action.
փ Less expensive than similar Manfrotto and Gitzo magnesium ball heads.
փ Supports up to 11 pounds, but is sturdily built and probably could support a bit more beyond that.
փ The clamping platform has a very nice safety feature that still holds onto your camera/lens if you either forget to tighten the clamp onto the camera/lens-attached quick release plate or if the ball head suddenly swivels downward while the camera is still mounted on the platform and you have loosened the platform's clamp.

ჯ Negatives:

ჯ Depending upon the available light and orientation that your camera is mounted onto the quick-release plate, it can be a bit difficult to view the bubble levels sometimes. If your camera has a built-in electronic level, or if it can display grid lines either on its viewfinder or on its LCD monitor screen, those are more accurate to align a photo with the horizontal and vertical elements in your shot instead of just relying on the bubble levels of a tripod head anyway.

I bought this ball head to replace the ball head that came with the Slik Mini II 43.3IN. Compact 4 Section Tripod With Ball Head in Gun Metal Finish. I was not pleased with the ball head that came on the Slik Mini II, but this ball head is a perfect match for that light 1.7-pound tripod! This ball head is rated to support 11 pounds. The construction quality is very high and robust, and it feels like it could support more than 11 pounds. It weighs 9.5 ounces and is 3 and 1/8 inches high.

The SBH-30 comes with two Vanguard QS-39 1/4" Camera Screw Quick Shoe Compatible with Tracker Series, Some Alta Series, and Some MG Series Tripods "Quick Shoe" quick release plates. The larger knob at the base is for locking the ball and panning base, and the small knob tightens the quick-release plate.

The base of the head has a 3/8-16 tripod mount, but it comes with a 1/4-20 adapter screwed inside the 3/8-16 mount, so it should fit most tripods/monopods. A small tool is included with the ball head package for unscrewing the 1/4-20 adapter if you want to use the 3/8-16 mount.

The ball head uses a 2.0x2.1" platform that screw-clamps onto the quick release plate that attaches to your camera or lens. The clamping platform has a very nice safety feature that still holds onto your camera/lens if you either forget to tighten the clamp onto the camera/lens-attached quick release plate or if the ball head suddenly swivels downward while the camera is still mounted on the platform and you have loosened the platform's clamp. You have to actually press an orange-colored spring-loaded button and slide the camera's quick release plate out of the platform to disengage the camera from the platform. This takes a tiny bit longer to attach/detach the camera from the ball head compared to some other tripod heads, but the added insurance and certainty is worth it!

The two bubble levels work well, but depending upon the available light and orientation that your camera is mounted onto the quick-release plate, it can be a bit hard to view the bubble levels sometimes. Luckily, my Canon 7D has a built-in electronic level, which I rely on entirely instead of using the bubble levels. But on my Canon 40D, I use a combination of these two bubble levels and the grid lines on the Canon EF-D Focusing Screen for Canon EOS 40D Digital SLR Camera to level my 40D. If your camera has a built-in electronic level, or if it can display grid lines either on its viewfinder or on its LCD monitor screen, those are more accurate to align a photo with the horizontal and vertical elements in your shot instead of just relying on the bubble levels of a tripod head anyway.

The ball head has a high-quality low-weight magnesium alloy construction, with very smooth and fluid knobs and ball head actions that allow precise handling and movement with a smooth even amount of adjustable friction and no stickiness in the ball head action. The ball head has a smooth 360-degree swivel rotation and +90 to -35 degree tilt. Because both the ball head and horizontal panning action are controlled by a single knob on the SBH-30, whereas the Vanguard SBH-100 Small Magnesium Alloy Ballhead with Two Onboard Bubble Levels, which is the next larger Vanguard ball head, has one knob to tighten the ball head and a separate smaller knob to tighten the panning base, if you like to take a series of overlapping shots to later stitch together as a panorama, this feature of the SBH-100 will definitely sway you over choosing the SBH-30. I also have the SBH-100 mounted on a larger tripod, while I use this SBH-30 on my travel-sized compact tripod.

If you are comparing and considering between this SBH-30 and Vanguard's SBH-100 head, here are the similarities between the SBH-30 and the SBH-100:

✸ Both ball heads have a similar high-quality low-weight magnesium alloy construction.

✸ Both ball heads have the same 360-degree swivel rotation and +90 to -35 degree tilt.

✸ Both ball heads have a 3/8-16 tripod mount at the base, but they come with a 1/4-20 adapter screwed inside the 3/8-16 mount.

✸ Both ball heads utilize two on-board bubble levels.

✸ Both ball heads come with two Vanguard QS-39 1/4" Camera Screw Quick Shoe Compatible with Tracker Series, Some Alta Series, and Some MG Series Tripods "Quick Shoe" quick release plates.

✸ Even though they look very slightly different from each other, both ball heads use a same-sized 2.0x2.1" platform that screw-clamps onto the quick release plates.

Now for the differences between the SBH-30 and the SBH-100:

✸ The smaller SBH-30 supports up to 11 pounds while the SBH-100 supports twice as much at 22 pounds.

✸ The smaller SBH-30 weighs 9.5 ounces compared to the larger SBH-100's 14.9 ounces.

✸ The height of the SBH-30 with its platform fully extended upward is 3 1/8 inch compared to the SBH-100's 4 1/8 inch height. The extra one inch of height on the SBH-100 is due to the barrel of the main body that is about twice as high as that of the SBH-30.

✸ Both the ball head and horizontal panning action are controlled by a single knob on the SBH-30, whereas the SBH-100 has one knob to tighten the ball head and a separate smaller knob to tighten the panning base.

✸ While both ball heads have a ring of notch markers spaced at 5-degree increments placed at the base of the ball head for use as a guide when horizontally panning the ball head, with smaller notches every 5 degrees and larger notches every 15 degrees, the SBH-100 also includes angle annotations at every 45-degree increment whereas the SBH-30 only has the notches without angle numbers printed on them. It seems silly that the SBH-30 did not also include the 45-degree angle increments printed on its base, but it can be useful at times to quickly look down and rotate the ball head at fixed increments when you have the angle numbering also displayed.

௫ Fuzzy Wuzzy's Conclusion:

This lightweight ball head is an excellent choice for a travel-sized tripod or monopod, or for a full-sized tripod if you do not need to support more than 11 pounds.
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9cc6ea80) out of 5 stars Great Quality and Great Price! Feb. 1 2011
By Tim Millington - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
I have looked at ball heads for years and the Vanguard Ball Head is GREAT! Quality and price exceed my expectations. Fitted on my Vanguard MonoPod makes a dynamite duo. It handles my D7000 with a 28-200 zoom lens with ease. I would recommend this item to my friends.
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9cc6edb0) out of 5 stars Compact and sturdy Dec 30 2010
By Carlos Gonzalez - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
Well, there's not a lot to a simple ball head like this. It's compact, but all metal construction so it has a very sturdy feel. It actually came with 2 plates, so if you're switching between cameras, you can have one attached to each camera and swap them out easily.

There are only two knobs. One to hold the ball still when you have it positioned and the other to secure the plate your camera is attached to. There is no standalone panning control, but it seems that may be hard to find near this price. There are two bubble levels to aid in leveling your shot out.

You can't really hand (or fingernail) tighten the screw for the plate/camera attachment enough to keep it sturdy - not sure how many heads you can do that with, so maybe this is a non issue. It turns out that the flash hotshoe cover on my Pentax K-x works well for screwing that in though :)

If you're going for a super precise shot framing, I noticed that the head moves ever so slightly when you tighten it. So, if you're a pro with very precise positioning needs, you may need a different head. Then again, if you're a pro, you're probably not looking for a tripod head in this price range.

I am currently using this with Davis & Sanford legs Davis & Sanford CARBONLITET3 Carbonlite Transporter Tripod Without Head and the two make a great pair for a lightweight yet sturdy setup.
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
By Chilly - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
Got this with 283 pro fiber tripod when order the new Nikon D7000. I was a little skeptical because it looks like it's for monopod. Looks tiny when mounted on the 283 but no issue in supported the D7000 with 18-200 and SB-400 speedlight. Excellent build quality and simple to use.