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Manfrotto MVH500AH Flat Base Pro Fluid Head (Black)
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- Wider platform for HDSLR Bodies
- Sliding QR plate for perfect balancing
- Fluid cartridges on both pan and tilt axes
- Material-Carbon Fiber, Aluminium
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|Item Dimensions||14 x 5.8 x 5.8 inches|
|Item Weight||1.98 pounds|
|Shipping Weight||3.53 pounds|
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This item Manfrotto MVH500AH Flat Base Pro Fluid Head (Black)
|Shipping||FREE Shipping||FREE Shipping||FREE Shipping||FREE Shipping||FREE Shipping||FREE Shipping|
|Sold By||BuyWise Corp.||SDC Photo||Photo Savings||Ornem||Amazon.com||Hunts Photo and Video|
|Item Dimensions||5.8 x 5.8 x 14 in||53.34 x 24.41 x 53.35 in||2.36 x 27.56 x 2.36 in||4.72 x 20.07 x 4.72 in||5 x 24.02 x 5 in||2.36 x 27.56 x 2.36 in|
|Item Weight||1.98 lbs||2.03 lbs||3.09 lbs||3.09 lbs||5.5 lbs||2.87 lbs|
|Maximum Height||—||53.35 in||—||56.69 in||170 cm||—|
The MVH500AH is a lightweight head with a wider platform for HDSLR bodies which has a sliding plate which travels to balance the latest interchangeable lens cameras. The entry-level 500 ensures smooth shots and fine control with up to 5kg (11lbs) of equipment. It's the most compact head in our successful Bridging Technology range and it replaces the Manfrotto 701HDV video head. Beautifully smooth shots: the 500 has professional fluid cartridges on both pan and tilt axes to ensure that every camera movement is smooth, controlled and precise. Faster, easier and safer to use: the side lock system allows the camera and sliding QR plate to click quickly into the head from above, instead of needing to be aligned and slid in from the back. No secondary safety lock is necessary. The side lock system also makes it quicker and simpler to lift the camera out of the head from above. The 500 has a pre-set counterbalance of 2.4kg (5.3 lbs.), but is able to support equipment of up to 5kg (11 lbs.). The 500 has one Easy Link 3/8" connector to allow an external monitor or other accessory equipment to be fitted. MVH500AH head with flat base tripod mount for attachment to a hybrid photo/video tripod, a traditional photo tripod, slider, a monopod or other supports. Specifications: 1/4" and 3/8" attachment type 3/8" screw attachment type 1 Bubble Spirit Level Independent Pan Lock Independent Tilt Lock Lateral Tilt -70 Degree / +90 Degree tilt range Material aluminum Maximum Working Temperature 140 Degree F Minimum Working Temperature -4 Degree F 2 Pan Bar Positions 1 Pan Bar Included Pan Drag fluid cartridge with fixed drag Panoramic Rotation 360 degrees Quick Release Plate Type 500PLONG Secondary Safety System Spring Loaded Counter Balance Tilt Drag fluid cartridge with fixed drag Weight 2.05 lbs. Working Height 3.74 in
Top customer reviews
I have not had much field testing experience with it yet, but these are my opnions and findings:
- It's smaller than I thought it would be, but it still has fantastic quality. Luckily, smaller is sometimes better when it comes to portability.
- The fliud drag controls are easy to use and are effective for making small adjustments. These are not 'on/off' controls, but rather incremental adjustments for how much force you have to use for pans and tilts.
- The tripod plate attachment mechanism is new to me. I've used the slide-in method, and this is a side-slide-in method. Is it better? I'm not sure. This does seem a little more secure, since if the clamp is nottightened, your plate (and camera) still will not fall off, although they will slide around. I think it's a clever system, but I can see how it could be slightly frustrating with bigger camera bodies or rig setups. There's a chance that if your setup is too wide, you won't be able to tilt it enough to slide the plate in.
- The handle is well-made with a good rubber grip on it (not much else to say about it, it's a handle).
- The pre-weighted balance on it will help those who have a large DSLR or a medium-sized video camera, but you will be frustrated if you're slapping a GoPro/Handycam on it, or a heavy-duty studio quality camera. I use a Canon 5D Mark III, and the balance is just about perfect with the body and a mid-sized lens on it. With some balance tweaking, it can easily handle attachments (mic/light/monitor).
- Something I wasn't expecting, but I am pleasantly surprised about is the 3/8" attachment on the left-hand side of the tripod head. This means that with the right attachments, you can put a magic arm or mount on the side to hold a monitor, mic, audio capture gear, or light (heck, maybe even a cupholder!.......although I wouldn't recommend that).
- The instructions are mostly visual instructions with a small amount of written ones. If you're familiar with video fluid tripod heads, then this won't be an issue (although I highly recommend reading through the instructions and visuals anyways). If you're not familiar with the way these heads work, definitely read the instructions or look up Manfrotto's video tutorials on their website or through YouTube.
- Your tripod head is only as sturdy as your legs are. Please, please, PLEASE don't spend money on a quality head and slap it onto weak, broken, unsteady, or low-quality legs.
- Keep in mind that balancing camera gear and getting smooth, fluid pans and tilts is more of an art than a science. You will get better shots the more you practice with this, so don't be frustrated if your first few shots aren't quite where you thought they'd be. Practice, practice, practice!
I put this on top of Oben AC-2320LA 3-Section Aluminum Lateral Tripod Legs, and it seems like a very sturdy setup!
Bottom line: This head will hold most photographers/videographers gear (if you're shooting DSLR/medium sized video camera), and will allow you to get solid, smooth pans and tilts. It's hard to beat this for the money. If you're on the edge about whether you need a bigger head or not, I would recommend Googling more reviews comparing different tripod heads (or go to your local camera shop and try them out!)
I really really like it! It's not cheap, but it's so easy to do butter-smooth pans. You can even do it with one finger, just smoothly panning. On my first shoot we did two such scenes, and they both worked fabulously.
For other static type of shots, the camera performs very well too. It's very sturdy, and goes up pretty high (6'), and the quick release works really well (although it takes a little getting used to). I'm using it with a Canon XA10.
The one thing that annoys me about it, is trying to get it level, for a "normal" static shot. The ball-and-socket mechanism is actually a bit awkward to get perfectly straight. It does have a level bubble, but it is in a really awkward place which make it difficult to see, especially in less the bright lighting conditions.
Still, this is a brilliant tripod. Some of the other filmmakers that I worked with on this really appreciated it too, and said how much they enjoyed working with it.