I've bought myself a Nodal Ninja 3 panorama head. Today I gave it a first test run, and it worked very well! That's my bike, by the way ;-)
Drag your mouse to look up, down, left or right. Scroll to zoom. Double-click for full screen.
Photo hosted by Flickr.
The details about how I created this photo are after the break.
This panorama was made up of 90 individual photos. I used exposure bracketing at -3EV, 0EV and +3EV to be able to handle the dynamic range of the scene. Stiching and HDR fusion was done with Hugin. To create the control points I used Autopano-SIFT, since I couldn't really be bothered to manually align all those 90 photos. Once the points were created, I hit the Hugin "optimize" button, deleted all control points that had a distance over 30, optimized again, deleted control points with a distance over 10, optimized again, and let Hugin stitch the lot.
I'm happily surprised with the result! There are very few alignment issues, which is quite good for a fully automatic process.
The software I used was mostly Open Source. The only closed source bit was Bibble Pro, which I used to import the RAW images, apply some lens correction, and output as TIFF for Hugin.