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Since their introduction in 2009, Nodal Ninja Ultimate R1 and R10 panorama heads have been the obvious choice for panoramic photographers needing an ultra compact pano head for travelling, backpacking or when weight and size is a concern.
When used with a circular or cropped circular fisheye lens, with equivalent focal length less than 13mm, it is possible to encompass the zenith (up shot) without actually needing to shoot this separately. What this leaves however is the rotator and tripod footprint and / or some blank space at the nadir (down shot) which is usually patched or covered using logos or effects like mirror balls, and other various patching techniques created using photo editing software.
There are many however who prefer to take separate nadir, and even zenith, shots by various means to not only improve overall quality at these points but also to create a full 360x180 degree free floating spherical panorama "without" evidence of tripod caps or photo editing. When used with a full frame fisheye lens, with equivalent focal length of 15-17mm, the zenith and/or nadir shots are mandatory if those areas need to be included. These will usually be taken from a position that is offset from the ideal NPP (no-parallax point), which requires a more complex workflow during post editing.
Using this compact and easy to use "Zenith / Nadir Adapter adapter will not only make the lives of perfectionists and full frame fisheye users much easier but will also cut post production times down making this is a 'must have' accessory to the R1 and R10 series heads.
The Zenith / Nadir Adapter allows the users to tilt their R1 / R10 to one of three preset tilt angles, -90º or -(90º +/- 7.5º). This will allow all models of R1/ 10 to take nadir shots at exactly - 90º or -90º +/- 2.5º depending on the tilt angle of R1 / R10 in use.
The shift in vertical height of the NPP can be compensated by raising the tripod centre column.
The tripod column lock ring will aid in remembering the required height compensation. The tripod can be moved laterally to bring the lens back to NPP as close as possible. Together with advanced stitching software, the shooting of a perfect nadir and/or zenith shot is now possible.
Shooting nadir to zenith is as simple as rotating the RD4 rotator 180 degrees. This adapter can also be used with R1 / R10 on Pano poles or monopods without an RD4 rotator (the rotator should be placed at the base of pole or monopod).
The optional Quick Mount Mini is needed to keep the footprint as small as possible to facilitate stitching if using in this fashion.
Nadir adapter and Quick Mount Mini shown mounted to Pano Pole.
Nadir Adapter shown mounted to Tripod.
Nadir Adapter shown in use mounted to Tripod.