Since I bought the Sony Î±7R III one thing I’ve found is that I’ve had to focus more on my technique as a photographer as the images clearly demonstrate flaws like OOF elements, motion blur, etc. That means I’ve been doing more serious work with a tripod. The Sony has a built-in level in the EVF/LCD and that’s handy, but I can compose much faster if I can level the tripod first. My 35-year-old Cullman 2904 tripod came with a cold shoe, but I never had much use for it until now:
Until recently I’ve been roughly levelling the tripod base by eye but I bought a three-axis hot shoe bubble level that sits in the shoe perfectly:
With that I can very quickly level the base by adjusting the legs. It’s especially handy for making panoramas. I’ve seen some tripods that have a bubble level built in to the base but this works well for me. 🙂 If your tripod doesn’t have a mount, you might be able to add one by purchasing a cold shoe (like this one, for example: cold shoe mount) and adhering it with some epoxy putty. Make sure everything is level before the glue cures!
P. S. My bubble level is secured on three sides; I use an elastic band wrapped around the center column and over the level to hold it in place.