Markins q20i   bv 20

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Markins Q20i & BV-20 Combo Tripod Ballhead

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The Markins Q20i & BV-20 Combo Tripod Ballhead

The Markins Q20i & BV-20 Combo Tripod Ball Head is a compact, heavy duty tripod head option for supporting large super-telephoto lenses. While you typically have to resort to using large, cumbersome gimbal heads to support these types of lenses, the BV-20 kit allows a much more manageable setup. Rather than having to take along both a standard ball head and large gimbal head, you only need take the standard-sized Q20i ball head and compact BV-20. Not using the super-tele at the moment? Just slide off the BV-20 and use the fully-functional Q20i ball head with a standard arca-swiss type plate (not included).

So what exactly is the BV-20? It’s essentially an accessory plate that’s been specifically designed to work with the Q20i. It slides into the quick-release of the Q20i when in the vertical position, and has a locking pin on the opposite side to ensure stability. We’re comfortable saying the head can support any of our super-telephoto lenses, but you’ll need to make sure you’ve got it mounted to a sturdy tripod.

Roger's Take

I’m an unabashed Markins fanboy — I’ve been using Markins ballheads for years. This is a very cool addition. Basically, it gives you the heavy-duty Markins Q20 head, but with a quick add on you’ve changed that to a gimbal head giving you quick rotation, vertical elevation, and any combination of the two. Perfect for birders, airshows, or other situations where you’d want a gimbal head.

Is it a replacement for a full Wimberley type II head? No, it’s not quite that smooth, although it can handle a lot of weight. How much weight? Well, we were able to put the 35 pound, 3 foot long Sigma 200-500 f/2.8 zoom on it. I’m not saying it was stable, but it worked. And that makes a measly 600 f/4 lens look like a playtoy.

It is, though, every bit as useful as a ballhead with a Sidekick or similar gimbal add-on, but a lot smaller, more convenient, and quicker to set up. I love it.

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We offer a 3-day inspection period on all sales, during which time you may return the item for a refund of the purchase price, not including shipping.

Finally, if you select the two-year lens warranty, you'll get additional protection from Consumer Priority Service ("CPS"). The two-year warranty will take effect after our 90-day warranty ends. Click the link below for all the details:

Extended Warranty Details