One Guy’s Review: ProMediaGear 3 Inch Universal L-Bracket

Panasonic GH3 with ProMediaGear 3" Universal L-bracket

Introduction

One of the nice things about using an established, long-running system like Nikon’s is not just the breadth and depth of the system, but also the various accessories that complement it. Take for example, quick release plates. These are little pieces of metal that allow for quick mounting and dismounting the camera on a tripod. For stills cameras, there is actually a more-or-less de-facto standard for quick release system, and that is the Arca-Swiss dovetail and clamp design. In fact, the system is now so popular that there are a multitude of companies making custom plates to fit cameras and lenses, with Really Right Stuff and Kirk Photo being two of the older ones around.

However, switching to the Panasonic GH3 since last year meant that getting a custom plate was an epic quest in itself. Since I normally use L-brackets, which are L-shaped plates that allow for easy switching between landscape and portrait orientation, as well as vertical battery grips, that meant finding a custom bracket for the GH3 practically impossible. I went to the usual suspects, and also trawled the Chinese sites, but there were none. There were some interesting universal L-brackets that looked like a good fit, with one by Fittest Photo looking really good.

Except that there was one problem. Continue reading One Guy’s Review: ProMediaGear 3 Inch Universal L-Bracket

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Manfrotto Adopts Arca Swiss Quick Release Standard with Q6 Top Lock System, Main Reason Not to Buy Their Heads Still Unsolved*

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I was browsing DPReview.com and this was one of the headlines. Those who have shot for long enough know that Manfrotto a) makes some great tripods, b) has a myriad selection of quick release plates that are all inferior to the Arca Swiss platform, and c) cannot make a ballhead to save their lives.  Well, they have addressed point b) with the new Q6 “Top Lock” quick release system, which comes as an adaptor on its own, or as an option on their ballheads. Not too much fanfare too – there was no news on the Manfrotto website, and the option has been available for a couple of months now. Talk about a silent launch. A quick look at B&H shows it going for US$100. Now, how about some proper ballheads?

*With apologies to a friend for stealing the long headline.

(Image Credit: Manfrotto website)

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