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Manfrotto496RC2 Compact Ball Head with RC2 Quick Release
 
4.6

(based on 407 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (282)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (100)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (22)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (2)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (1)

96%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Stable (360)
  • Attaches firmly (351)
  • Large range of motion (303)
  • Strong clamp (294)
  • Easy to use (4)

Cons

  • Heavy (33)
  • Complicated controls (15)
  • Small range (8)
  • Weak clamp (8)

Best Uses

  • Landscape/scenery (310)
  • Night shots (254)
  • Portraits (228)
  • Travel (199)
  • Home (167)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Photo enthusiast (204), Semi-pro photographer (92), Pro photographer (43), Casual photographer (41), Photography student (10)
    • Was this a gift?:
    • No (288), Yes (10)

Most Liked Positive Review

 

First Pro-Rated Tripod Head

This is the first time I had to purchase a tripod head. It's been great and easy to work with since I got it. It is a solid construction, easy to manipulate positions,...Read complete review

This is the first time I had to purchase a tripod head. It's been great and easy to work with since I got it. It is a solid construction, easy to manipulate positions, and stable. It attaches to my Manfrotto tripod snuggly and makes it appear they are just one piece. It's a great addition if you're working with a camera setup thats under 8lbs. I have mounted a Nikon D300s with battery pack (MB-D10), SB-800, and 70-200mm VR II and it didn't strain to hold it up at all.

VS

Most Liked Negative Review

 

Not Great for Macro

I bought this ballhead to use with a smaller tripod for macro shooting. The main selling feature for me was the fact that this ballhead was 'shorter' than my main ballhead & would...Read complete review

I bought this ballhead to use with a smaller tripod for macro shooting. The main selling feature for me was the fact that this ballhead was 'shorter' than my main ballhead & would therefore help me get as low to the ground as possible. Overall it works fine, but it is not ideal for macro shooting. I shoot with a Nikon D90 and my macro lens is a Nikon 105mm 2.8 - which together weigh no where close to the weight of the advertised load capacity. I quickly became frustrated with this ballhead because it would continually track downward. It was extremely difficult to get it adjusted for a macro shot because of this & once you got it 'locked down' it would continue to slowly track downward. This might not be as much of a problem with wider angled shots, but with extreme close ups it was a real pain. The quick release plate would also sometimes shift when locking it in place which caused it (and thus, the entire camera) to wobble. I found myself taking it off and putting it back on several times before it would seat securely with no wobbles. For a multipurpose ballhead it would probably work fine, but for tight shots it just doesn't perform well.Also keep in mind that it does not have a separate panning feature which would definitely be of concern when shooting landscapes.

Reviewed by 407 customers

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5.0

Great ball head

By Sailor

from Stockton, CA

Comments about Manfrotto 496RC2 Compact Ball Head with RC2 Quick Release:

Excellent quality for the money.

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5.0

Excellent choice

By CrashRyan

from New York City

About Me Semi-pro Photographer

Verified Buyer

Pros

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

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Landscape/Scenery
    • Night Shots
    • Travel

    Comments about Manfrotto 496RC2 Compact Ball Head with RC2 Quick Release:

    It was not the first choice I came in for, but after talking with the sales person, I realized I had initially selected the wrong ballhead ... it didn't pivot sideways for portrait shots! Thank ou B&H! I paired it with the Manfrotto 294 Carbon Fiber Monopod and it's a perfect combo.

    • Was this a gift?:
    • No

    Share this review

     
    5.0

    Great product and good service from B&H.

    By Hesse Productions BCC

    from Black Canyon City, AZ

    About Me Pro Photographer

    Verified Buyer

    Pros

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

    Cons

      Best Uses

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

      Comments about Manfrotto 496RC2 Compact Ball Head with RC2 Quick Release:

      I use the ball head with a DSLR with a heavy lens and the friction adjustment is very handy. I also use it with a Sony FS700 and a Manfrotto 701 video head on location, and the ball head is light, easy to level the video head and strong enough to support the entire rig.

      • Was this a gift?:
      • No

      Share this review

       
      5.0

      It gets the job done

      By junkfoodvegan

      from New York, NY

      About Me Pro Photographer

      Verified Reviewer

      Pros

      • easy to use
      • Good Stability
      • Lightweight

      Cons

        Best Uses

        • Landscape/Scenery
        • Night Shots
        • Portraits
        • Travel

        Comments about Manfrotto 496RC2 Compact Ball Head with RC2 Quick Release:

        I bought this head four years ago when B&H had a special deal on this plus the (now discontinued) 190XPROB aluminum legs. I have a couple other heavier duty heads that I mostly use now, but this one served me well as my main head for many years. It's solid, easy to use, lightweight, and reliable. At one point when this was my only tripod I would use it with my 4x5 cameras. After that experience, I wouldn't recommend it for anything larger than the largest DSLRs, but it certainly did the job. It holds a 5D and a 70-200 2.8L no problem. A great, reliable, no nonsense head.My one complaint is that the ball tension micro adjustment isn't the best. It isn't infinitely adjustable, there are more like three modes, no tension, some tension and too much tension. But in the real world this isn't really an issue at all.

        • Was this a gift?:
        • No

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        5.0

        Fast work

        By Dale

        from Eden Prairie, MN

        About Me Pro Photographer

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

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

        Cons

        • No Panning Lock Lever

        Best Uses

        • Home
        • Macro
        • Night Shots
        • Portraits
        • Weddings/Events

        Comments about Manfrotto 496RC2 Compact Ball Head with RC2 Quick Release:

        Because I work in cluttered areas, I need to frequently dismount and re-mount my camera. The quick release makes fast work of both. I like the high-friction grippy ball. I use a heavy lens (70-200 2.8 L) with my Canon EOS 5D Mark III, and I don't expect any problems.

        I wish I'd have sprung for the next highest level with the panning lock lever!

        • Was this a gift?:
        • No

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        5.0

        So easy to use

        By BLB

        from Atlanta

        Comments about Manfrotto 496RC2 Compact Ball Head with RC2 Quick Release:

        I have just purchased this Manfrotto ball head and so far it is exactly what I wanted. I transitioned from a traditional head with three handles for three seperate adjustments. I wonder why I waited so long to make the switch. The adjustments are quick and easy with just the turn of a single lever. And once tightened, it stays put. It works exactly as it should.

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        5.0

        Great Product

        By Grandpa

        from San Diego, CA

        About Me Casual Photographer

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Attaches Firmly
        • Good Stability

        Cons

          Best Uses

            Comments about Manfrotto 496RC2 Compact Ball Head with RC2 Quick Release:

            This product has improved my photography immensely. It's so easy to use and the friction control is very helpful.

            • Was this a gift?:
            • No

            Share this review

             
            5.0

            Manfrotto 496RC2 Compact Ball Head

            By George

            from Crossville, TN

            About Me Photo Enthusiast

            Verified Buyer

            Pros

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

            Cons

              Best Uses

              • Home
              • Landscape/Scenery
              • Night Shots
              • Portraits
              • Travel

              Comments about Manfrotto 496RC2 Compact Ball Head with RC2 Quick Release:

              Use the Ball Head with a Canon 60D camera and 24-70mm f2.8 lens. There is no problem with the weight and the head works perfectly.

              • Was this a gift?:
              • No

              Share this review

               
              5.0

              Great ballhead!

              By Brad

              from Baltimore, MD

              About Me Photo Enthusiast

              Verified Buyer

              Pros

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

              Cons

                Best Uses

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

                Comments about Manfrotto 496RC2 Compact Ball Head with RC2 Quick Release:

                Amazing! Simply amazing!

                • Was this a gift?:
                • No

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                5.0

                Awesome

                By J Rhodes

                from Tx

                Comments about Manfrotto 496RC2 Compact Ball Head with RC2 Quick Release:

                Head works perfect!! Couldn't be more happy. I mainly use this for astrophotography and it's perfect!!

                Share this review

                (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                5.0

                Manfrotto 496RC2 Ball Head

                By Eli

                from Boulder, Colorado

                About Me Pro Photographer

                Verified Buyer

                Pros

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

                Cons

                  Best Uses

                  • Landscape/Scenery
                  • Night Shots
                  • Travel
                  • Wildlife

                  Comments about Manfrotto 496RC2 Compact Ball Head with RC2 Quick Release:

                  I am a professional photographer. My career depends on good equipment. A piece of equipment that is an extension of me is my tripod.I have used ball heads on my tripods since the 1980s. I have always used Bogen/Manfrotto tipods AND heads. The 496RC2 is great, user-friendly, and reliable. Efficiency is of utmost importance when I'm using my tripod and this head allows me to be quick and exacting. For its size, it does an amazing job at holding my 2.8 lens and my 300mm lens tight and secure for my next shot. The quick release feature is indeed quick, which is what we as professionals need. I once tried a competitor's ball head and did not like the fact that it did not have two open slots for vertical shots. Vertical shots are so easy with my 496RC2.Eli Vega, Colorado I can't think of anything negative to say

                  • Was this a gift?:
                  • No

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                  5.0

                  You'll love it.

                  By Usmale

                  from Florida

                  Comments about Manfrotto 496RC2 Compact Ball Head with RC2 Quick Release:

                  Not a necessity but makes life easier and you'll be happy you bought it.

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                  5.0

                  Excellent Ball Head

                  By Chas

                  from Hillsboro, Ohio

                  About Me Semi-pro Photographer

                  Verified Buyer

                  Pros

                  • Attaches Firmly
                  • Good Stability
                  • Large Range of Motion

                  Cons

                  • Little Heavy On A Monopod

                  Best Uses

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

                  Comments about Manfrotto 496RC2 Compact Ball Head with RC2 Quick Release:

                  I use this head on my tripod and monopod with great success. The adjustable friction makes it easy to adapt from small to large lenses and from monopod to tripod use. The quick-release-plate is quick, easy and solid; well designed.

                  • Was this a gift?:
                  • No

                  Share this review

                   
                  4.0

                  Perfect Head

                  By Nick TK Pinto

                  from South Florida

                  About Me Pro Photographer

                  Verified Buyer

                  Pros

                  • Attaches Firmly
                  • Good Stability
                  • Strong Clamp

                  Cons

                  • Needs Arm

                  Best Uses

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

                  Comments about Manfrotto 496RC2 Compact Ball Head with RC2 Quick Release:

                  We use this product on our Manfrotto tripod, as well as our Konova slider. It fits perfectly on both, giving us full range of motion. Very easy to use plate as well as fasteners. Only thing I would have liked to see with this head would be an arm, which would allow for a more fluid range of motion. Other than that this is a great product, very versatile, especially at its price.

                  • Was this a gift?:
                  • No

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                  5.0

                  Monfrotto does it again.

                  By Banksar

                  from Nanuet, NY

                  Comments about Manfrotto 496RC2 Compact Ball Head with RC2 Quick Release:

                  A strong piece that easily handles my D200 with a Sigma 50-500mm lens. A definite bargain at the price. The head fits nicely to the Manfrotto 55XB.

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                  (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                   
                  3.0

                  Not a Design Improvement

                  By Nature Girl

                  from Raleigh, NC

                  About Me Photo Enthusiast

                  Verified Buyer

                  Pros

                  • Good Stability
                  • Large Range of Motion

                  Cons

                  • Complicated Controls
                  • Small Knob Hard To Turn

                  Best Uses

                    Comments about Manfrotto 496RC2 Compact Ball Head with RC2 Quick Release:

                    I bought this to change out the head on a spare tripod. The tripod head on my primary is a 488RC2 which is no longer made. I found this design to be much more difficult to use. The smaller knob is very hard to tighten and loosen if you do not good finger strength. On those cold mornings when fingers are stiff, forget it. The quality is good and it does the job of holding the camera secure but I prefer the older design.

                    • Was this a gift?:
                    • No

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                    5.0

                    Great Ball Head for Manfrotto Monopod

                    By Penny

                    from Blythewood, SC

                    Comments about Manfrotto 496RC2 Compact Ball Head with RC2 Quick Release:

                    Solid construction, durable, and easy to get on and off the monopod, and love that it comes with the quick-release adapter. Great product at a reasonable price.

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                    5.0

                    Perfect for my monopod

                    By Ryan H

                    from Midland, MI

                    Comments about Manfrotto 496RC2 Compact Ball Head with RC2 Quick Release:

                    I bought this ball head for several reasons... -it was light-it was inexpensive-it was rated to be able to handle my Canon 6d/grip and 70-200 2.8 IS II-most importantly I was told it would allow me to keep the quick release plate on the foot of my 70-200 collar. For some reason the foot was too big to be able to fit into some of the other tripod heads I had so when this one worked out I was extremely pleased. Panning on my monopod didn't matter to me so the fact that this one won't do that wasn't a big deal.

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                    5.0

                    Great product

                    By chico

                    from edison, NJ

                    Verified Buyer

                    Comments about Manfrotto 496RC2 Compact Ball Head with RC2 Quick Release:

                    very goof product

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                    (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                     
                    5.0

                    it holds my 70-200!!!!

                    By niwrem

                    from San Francisco

                    Comments about Manfrotto 496RC2 Compact Ball Head with RC2 Quick Release:

                    as my headline states, it does a great job at being stable when I have my heaviest lens 70-200 mounted. the build quality is good. I want to add that I have used it to the extreme at the beach, rain, snow and it served me well so far so I'm happy with it

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