Manfrotto MVH500AH Fluid Video Head with Flat Base

B&H # MAMVH500AH Mfr # MVH500AH
In Stock
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You Pay: $153.88
Mail-in Rebate: -$40.00 (see details)
Offer Ends: AUG 31 '14
Price after Rebate: $113.88
Product Highlights
  • 11 lb Weight Capacity
  • Wide Platform for HDSLRs
  • Side Lock System for Safer Mounting
  • Aluminum Alloy Construction
  • Spring-loaded Counterbalance
  • Includes Long Quick-release Plate
  • 1/4" and 3/8" Camera Attachment
  • Additional 3/8" Accessory Connection

The MVH500AH Fluid Video Head with Flat Base from Manfrotto is designed with a wide platform, optimal for HDSLR camera bodies. Smooth and precise, it has a maximum weight load of 11 lb and professional quality fluid cartridges on both its pan and tilt axes. It has a pre-set spring-loaded counterbalance of 5.3 lb, its lateral tilt range is -70°/+90° and it provides 360° panning rotation.

The side lock system on the MVH500AH 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. This makes it easier and safer to mount your camera on this head. The head attaches to a tripod via a 3/8"-16 thread and offers both a 1/4"-20 and 3/8"-16 camera attachment. It also provides an Easy Link 3/8" connector on the side of the head to attach accessories such as a video monitor. The 500PLONG quick release plate is included with this head.

The MVH500AH is made from aluminum alloy, measures 3.74" high and provides a bubble level and precision control handle.

Wide platform fluid pan video head ideal for HDSLR cameras
5.3 lb pre-set spring-loaded counterbalance system
Side-lock system for easier and safer camera mounting
Aluminum alloy construction
Includes long quick-release plate
11 lb maximum weight capacity
Load Capacity 11 lb (5 kg)
Diameter/Thread 1/4"-20 and 3/8"-16
Material Aluminum Alloy
Base Mount Thread Size 3/8"
Counter Balance System Yes
Counter Balance Range Pre-set to 5.3 lb (2.4 kg)
Quick Release/Wedge Plate Yes - 500PLONG
Tilt Drag Yes - fluid cartridge with fixed drag
Tilt Range -70°/+90°
Tilt Lock Yes
Spring Loaded Counter Balance Yes
Pan Range 360º
Pan Lock Yes
Pan Bar 1 - included
Leveling Bubble/Illuminated Yes/No
Temperature Range -4 - 140º F (-20 - 60º C)
Height 3.74" (9.5 cm)
Weight 2.05 lb (930 g)
Manfrotto MVH500AH Fluid Video Head with Flat Base
  • 500PLONG Quick Release Plate
  • Handle
  • Limited 2-year Warranty Plus 3-year Extension with Registration
  • REVIEW SNAPSHOT®

    by PowerReviews
    ManfrottoMVH500AH Fluid Video Head with Flat Base
     
    4.5

    (based on 53 reviews)

    Ratings Distribution

    • 5 Stars

       

      (30)

    • 4 Stars

       

      (19)

    • 3 Stars

       

      (3)

    • 2 Stars

       

      (0)

    • 1 Stars

       

      (1)

    93%

    of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

    Pros

    • Stable (36)
    • Attaches firmly (31)
    • Large range of motion (27)
    • Strong clamp (19)
    • Easy to use (3)

    Cons

    • Heavy (3)

    Best Uses

    • Video (34)
    • Weddings (17)
    • Landscape/scenery (16)
    • Travel (11)
    • Home (10)
      • Reviewer Profile:
      • Pro photographer (17), Semi-pro photographer (15), Photo enthusiast (10)
      • Was this a gift?:
      • No (45)

    Most Liked Positive Review

     

    Very smooth, but needed adjustment

    This head, in general, is rather nice. Tilt action was butter smooth out of the box. Quick release plate and mechanism are nice and easy to use.
    However, pan action was...Read complete review

    This head, in general, is rather nice. Tilt action was butter smooth out of the box. Quick release plate and mechanism are nice and easy to use.
    However, pan action was horrendously stiff. It would actually shift the whole tripod, or would loosen the attachment plate from column. I popped off the pan screw cover, loosened the bolt, then re-tightened it with less torque. It now pans easily and smoothly.
    Another thing is I think the tilt balancing spring is too tight. Tilt it more than 20 degrees either way, even with a DSLR+70-200 f2.8, and you have to struggle to keep it there without tightening the knob. Though gotta say, with video, you rarely need large angle tilts. Still, I will try to find a way to loosen the spring.

    VS

    Most Liked Negative Review

     

    Not Enough Drag

    I got this as a leightweight option to my heavier tripod head and I understand that there are compromises with a head of this size and price. However, I still feel like this head...Read complete review

    I got this as a leightweight option to my heavier tripod head and I understand that there are compromises with a head of this size and price. However, I still feel like this head has nowhere near enough drag for pans and tilts, especially at longer focal lengths.

    Additionally, the drag tension for the pan and tilt seems to be set at different ammounts. This makes combination pan / tilt moves difficult to execute smoothly.

    On the other hand, the new quick release system is excellent. It's much quicker than the older sliding plate mount design. The counterbalance works well too, although it still isn't enough for my camera.

    I understand that the 502 has many of the features that are missing from this model and it isn't much more expensive. However, it weighs nearly twice as much, which is unacceptable for me.

    Reviewed by 53 customers

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    Displaying reviews 1-20

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    5.0

    smooth head

    By rapsak

    from Brno, Czech Republic

    About Me Freelancer

    Verified Buyer

    Pros

    • Compact Design
    • Easy To Use
    • Professional Quality

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • Complex Projects
      • Home Movies
      • Independent Films

      Comments about Manfrotto MVH500AH Fluid Video Head with Flat Base:

      This is a really smooth pan head. I use it for shooting promotional videos and sports (sk8). The quick release is a great bonus.

      • Was this a gift?:
      • No

      Share this review

       
      5.0

      Well worth the money

      By Video newbie

      from Riverside, CA

      About Me Beginner At Video, Business Owner

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

      • Improves Performance
      • Lightweight
      • Professional Quality

      Cons

        Best Uses

        • Pan Shots For Video

        Comments about Manfrotto MVH500AH Fluid Video Head with Flat Base:

        I can give this product a five-star rating without any reservations. I purchased it for one purpose: to shoot smooth pan clips for a client with my DSLR, without having to buy a full video tripod package. It serves that purpose admirably. I was a bit concerned that there's no way to adjust the pan friction, but the drag is just about where it should be, anyway, and makes the panning easy. (Adjustable friction would cost more, of course.) It is a bit tricky to level the head, but not a major wrestling match. You just need to watch the level bubble and adjust the tripod legs independently. A ball head would be easier but then, again, you'd pay more. Having used it a few times, the product feels very well made and even looks good on my Gitzo legs. Definitely something I would recommend for this basic purpose. I must say that I enjoy using it!

        • Was this a gift?:
        • No

        Share this review

         
        4.0

        Pricey but worth it

        By Marc Supsic's Wine Living

        from Glenside, PA

        About Me Business Owner, Film Student, Hobbyist

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Easy To Use
        • Improves Performance
        • Professional Quality
        • Rugged

        Cons

        • Pricey

        Best Uses

        • Complex Projects
        • Home Movies
        • Independent Films
        • In The Studio
        • on the road

        Comments about Manfrotto MVH500AH Fluid Video Head with Flat Base:

        I had ordered an entire tripod with fluid head for about the same price, and (un)fortunately it was on backorder at the time. So, I decided to cancel that order and just go for the Manfrotto fluid head, which was about the same price. It seemed expensive just for a head, but you get what you pay for. The construction and design are solid, the motion is smooth as butter. Well worth it.

        • Was this a gift?:
        • No

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        5.0

        Absolute quality, in every sense.

        By Joe the Creator

        from Sarasota, Fl

        About Me Pro Photographer

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Attaches Firmly
        • Good Stability
        • Large Range of Motion
        • Strong Clamp

        Cons

          Best Uses

          • Home
          • Landscape/Scenery
          • Night Shots
          • Portraits
          • Sports/Action
          • Travel
          • Video
          • Weddings/Events
          • Wildlife

          Comments about Manfrotto MVH500AH Fluid Video Head with Flat Base:

          Out of all the stands I've used, Manfrotto stands well above the rest. I've used some cheaper stands before and nothing's worse than having to worry about a stand rather than framing and composition. Manfrotto products are well worth the price. You're not just paying for a name, you're paying for quality.
          I paired my MVH500AH head with a set of Manfrotto 190XDB 57" legs and in the beginning I was worried a video head would be a little much for those small legs. I needed something compact and light since I do a lot of outdoor shooting. But when the head came in, I could feel the quality. The pan and tilt are smooth as silk and it fits perfectly on my tripod legs. It also folds up nice and neat and it's pretty light for such a durable construction.
          Like I said, the pan and tilt are both excellent and you can feel the quality of the build construction when you hold it. Also, the quick release is extremely easy (pulls up and out rather than sliding out like others). Overall just a phenomenal head.

          • Was this a gift?:
          • No

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          5.0

          Excellent product for the price

          By themoose

          from Calgary, AB

          About Me Semi-pro Photographer

          Verified Buyer

          Pros

          • Attaches Firmly
          • Good Stability
          • Large Range of Motion
          • Strong Clamp

          Cons

            Best Uses

            • Portraits
            • Sports/Action
            • Video
            • Weddings/Events

            Comments about Manfrotto MVH500AH Fluid Video Head with Flat Base:

            Using it for video both on the Manfrotto 190XPROL Aluminum Tripod and a slider. Both applications work great. Purchased on recommendation from a B&H rep during online chat.

            • Was this a gift?:
            • No

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            3.0

            Not Enough Drag

            By Matt S

            from Chicago, IL

            About Me Pro Photographer

            Verified Buyer

            Pros

            • Attaches Firmly
            • Good Mounting Method

            Cons

            • Not Enough Drag

            Best Uses

            • Travel
            • Video

            Comments about Manfrotto MVH500AH Fluid Video Head with Flat Base:

            I got this as a leightweight option to my heavier tripod head and I understand that there are compromises with a head of this size and price. However, I still feel like this head has nowhere near enough drag for pans and tilts, especially at longer focal lengths.

            Additionally, the drag tension for the pan and tilt seems to be set at different ammounts. This makes combination pan / tilt moves difficult to execute smoothly.

            On the other hand, the new quick release system is excellent. It's much quicker than the older sliding plate mount design. The counterbalance works well too, although it still isn't enough for my camera.

            I understand that the 502 has many of the features that are missing from this model and it isn't much more expensive. However, it weighs nearly twice as much, which is unacceptable for me.

            • Was this a gift?:
            • No

            Share this review

             
            5.0

            Smooth and Easy

            By Edge of the Ocean

            from Florida's Space Coast

            About Me Semi-pro Photographer

            Verified Buyer

            Pros

            • Good Stability
            • Large Range of Motion

            Cons

              Best Uses

              • Landscape/Scenery
              • Sports/Action
              • Video
              • Weddings/Events

              Comments about Manfrotto MVH500AH Fluid Video Head with Flat Base:

              The fluid head is just that, and a major step forward from others I have been using. I have already used this equipment for an air show and head shots, taking advantage of the great movement and quick release shoe.

              • Was this a gift?:
              • No

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              5.0

              Awesome!

              By garrett

              from pa

              Comments about Manfrotto MVH500AH Fluid Video Head with Flat Base:

              Super smooth, great for a 85mm spotting scope.

              Share this review

               
              5.0

              excellent product

              By cio

              from passaic, nj

              About Me Semi-pro Photographer

              Verified Buyer

              Pros

              • Attaches Firmly
              • Good Stability
              • Large Range of Motion
              • Strong Clamp

              Cons

                Best Uses

                • Video
                • Weddings/Events

                Comments about Manfrotto MVH500AH Fluid Video Head with Flat Base:

                used this video head on a wedding last weekend. very smooth.

                • Was this a gift?:
                • No

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                (1 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                3.0

                Mannfrotto fluid head

                By Ben

                from san francisco

                About Me Photo Enthusiast

                Pros

                • Good Stability
                • Large Range of Motion

                Cons

                • Heavy

                Best Uses

                • Sports/Action
                • Video

                Comments about Manfrotto MVH500AH Fluid Video Head with Flat Base:

                Overall this thing does what it should, but ! Had they not sent their cheesy instructions, it would have helped more than having them. Also would have been nice had thay used a swiss arca, or something else compatible tray. As is ,you have to remove the whole head and put your ballhead on to use your SLR. Only option is to carry the small loseable screws in you pocket and bolt your camera on each time ! There are also other small accessories in the box, with no explanation what-so-ever, what they are for !

                • Was this a gift?:
                • No

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                4.0

                Ideal for DSLR shooters

                By tonsfocus

                from Chiang Mai, Thailand

                About Me Semi-pro Photographer

                Verified Reviewer

                Pros

                • Good Stability
                • Large Range of Motion

                Cons

                • Screws Attaching 2 Tripod

                Best Uses

                • Landscape/Scenery
                • Travel
                • Video

                Comments about Manfrotto MVH500AH Fluid Video Head with Flat Base:

                I haven't used this for enough projects to give a very thorough review, but I'll say that I got pretty much what I was hoping for.

                Many of the other bridging-technology heads by Manfrotto are MASSIVE in size - definitely not ideal for a run-and-gun DSLR video shooter. This was the smallest that still provides fluid drag.

                I was concerned that the fixed drag speed might be an issue, but it happens to be just about perfect for the speed I imagine needing. Not too weak, not too strong.

                The plate loads very nicely, and the adjustments and locking mechanisms are fine.

                My one and only complaint are the tiny screws that you must screw in to lock it to the (Manfrotto 055CX Pro) tripod. Really Manfrotto? Such a chintzy solution to a very basic engineering problem? Surely they could come up with something less finicky and tedious. Plus, it will always be a worry that I'll lose the screws, and no doubt they are hard to find and probably a little pricey to replace.

                Aside from that, I do really like this fluid head.

                • Was this a gift?:
                • No

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                5.0

                Best video head to date!

                By PriceRightProductions

                from Fresno, CA

                About Me Semi-pro Photographer

                Verified Buyer

                Pros

                • Attaches Firmly
                • Good Stability
                • Large Range of Motion
                • Strong Clamp

                Cons

                  Best Uses

                  • Video

                  Comments about Manfrotto MVH500AH Fluid Video Head with Flat Base:

                  I have used kit tripods for years. This my first time purchasing a high quality video head and I don't think I can ever go back.

                  I have used the older Manfrotto models: 501 and 701HDV, but this video head is a step up in quality as it is built from metal compared to the older versions that looked much cheaper and primarily plastic. However the best feature is the way the base plate snaps in compared to older versions that would slide in. This makes it much faster for run and gun situations and less trouble for DSLR users who have problems with the knobs catching on the body.

                  It is completely fluid in all directions and the two knobs make for easy adjustments to the tension. I highly recommend this head for video use and wouldn't use any other head unless I am using a heavier setup.

                  • Was this a gift?:
                  • No

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                  4.0

                  Great product!

                  By DTT

                  from Lititz, PA

                  About Me Semi-pro Photographer

                  Verified Buyer

                  Pros

                  • Good Stability
                  • Relatively Compact
                  • Very smooth

                  Cons

                  • Lacks The 502 Features

                  Best Uses

                  • Landscape/Scenery
                  • Video
                  • Weddings/Events

                  Comments about Manfrotto MVH500AH Fluid Video Head with Flat Base:

                  Great smoothness - exactly what I was looking for. Wish it had the features of the 502 fluid head. I chose the 500 over the 502 only because the 500 is more compact and the 502 was too big for me. The best would be a 500 head with the 502 features. Other than that I love this head.

                  • Was this a gift?:
                  • No

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                  5.0

                  Great Video Head

                  By jamesdavid

                  from Phoenix, AZ

                  About Me Semi-pro Photographer

                  Verified Buyer

                  Pros

                  • Good Stability

                  Cons

                    Best Uses

                    • Video
                    • Weddings/Events

                    Comments about Manfrotto MVH500AH Fluid Video Head with Flat Base:

                    This is a great video head, especially for the price point. I needed a flat base head for my slider that had the same quick release plate as my other tripod/head. This was perfect! Easy enough to work with. Controls are easy to get to. Great for HDSLR cameras!

                    • Was this a gift?:
                    • No

                    Share this review

                     
                    4.0

                    Great Video Head

                    By KC

                    from White Bluff, TN

                    About Me Photo Enthusiast

                    Verified Buyer

                    Pros

                    • Attaches Firmly
                    • Good Stability
                    • Large Range of Motion
                    • Strong Clamp

                    Cons

                      Best Uses

                      • Home
                      • Landscape/Scenery
                      • Portraits
                      • Travel
                      • Video
                      • Wildlife

                      Comments about Manfrotto MVH500AH Fluid Video Head with Flat Base:

                      Smooth operating video head
                      Light weight
                      The side locking quick release is great

                      • Was this a gift?:
                      • No

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                      5.0

                      i love it

                      By mab

                      from Middlesex nj

                      About Me Pro Photographer

                      Verified Buyer

                      Pros

                      • Good Stability

                      Cons

                        Best Uses

                        • Weddings/Events

                        Comments about Manfrotto MVH500AH Fluid Video Head with Flat Base:

                        weddings

                        • Was this a gift?:
                        • No

                        Share this review

                         
                        5.0

                        don't be confuse

                        By devranbey

                        from manhattan

                        Comments about Manfrotto MVH500AH Fluid Video Head with Flat Base:

                        That's awesome

                        Share this review

                        (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                         
                        5.0

                        Smooth Operator, Smoooooooth... Operator

                        By Posh Cat

                        from Austin, TX

                        About Me Semi-pro Photographer

                        Verified Buyer

                        Pros

                        • Attaches Firmly
                        • Good Stability
                        • Large Range of Motion
                        • Strong Clamp

                        Cons

                          Best Uses

                          • Auditions
                          • Home
                          • Portraits
                          • Video

                          Comments about Manfrotto MVH500AH Fluid Video Head with Flat Base:

                          I'm new to being a filmmaker. My experience is as a film actor but I wanted to start self generating content. I researched many tripods and head options. There are definitely some better ones out there however with that comes a much higher price tag. A friend of mine strongly recommended Manfrotto and I almost didn't listen. I wanted to spend as least amount of money as possible. But at the same time I wanted to future-proof my purchases as much as possible. After looking at all the options over and over I decided on the MVH500AH Fluid Video Head with Flat Base and I'm super pleased with my purchase. I cannot compare it to another head since it's my first one but I love it! It's super smooth and easy to use. I love the way it quick releases. I bought it to use with a Padcaster which holds my iPad however once I can afford a DSLR I will definitely keep using this head!

                          • Was this a gift?:
                          • No

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                          5.0

                          Love it.

                          By Carlos

                          from Naples, Fl

                          About Me Pro Photographer

                          Verified Buyer

                          Pros

                          • Attaches Firmly
                          • Good Stability

                          Cons

                            Best Uses

                            • Landscape/Scenery
                            • Night Shots
                            • Video
                            • Weddings/Events

                            Comments about Manfrotto MVH500AH Fluid Video Head with Flat Base:

                            Fuerte, de buen material y buen diseño. Los clientes aprecian mucho ese toque profesional y además trabaja perfectamente. Es pesado, pero no tanto como para ser considerado un defecto, al contrario, brinda seguridad.

                            • Was this a gift?:
                            • No

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                            5.0

                            MVH500AH Fluid Video Head with Flat Base

                            By octisan

                            from New jersey

                            About Me Pro Photographer

                            Verified Buyer

                            Pros

                            • Attaches Firmly
                            • Good Stability
                            • Large Range of Motion
                            • Strong Clamp

                            Cons

                              Best Uses

                              • Documentary
                              • Travel
                              • Video

                              Comments about Manfrotto MVH500AH Fluid Video Head with Flat Base:

                              This is a good investment for a videographer....I took this fluid Video Head in a recent trip and perform as expected

                              • Was this a gift?:
                              • No

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                              Quick Release Plates

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                              Manfrotto -  500PLONG Video Camera Plate
                              • You Pay: $29.99
                              Usually ships in 7-14 business days ? Estimated arrival at B&H is 7-14 business days. Your order will only be charged at time of shipment.
                               

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                              Adapter Bushings

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                              Manfrotto -  148KN Reducing Bushing Set - 3/8"-16 to 1/4"-20 (Set of 5)
                              • You Pay: $11.06
                               
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