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REVIEW SNAPSHOT®

by PowerReviews
Manfrotto496RC2 Compact Ball Head with RC2 Quick Release
 
4.6

(based on 449 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (313)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (107)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (23)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (4)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (2)

96%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Stable (376)
  • Attaches firmly (367)
  • Large range of motion (318)
  • Strong clamp (307)
  • Easy to use (5)

Cons

  • Heavy (35)
  • Complicated controls (15)
  • Weak clamp (9)
  • Small range (8)
  • Unstable (3)

Best Uses

  • Landscape/scenery (321)
  • Night shots (265)
  • Portraits (238)
  • Travel (209)
  • Home (172)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Photo enthusiast (213), Semi-pro photographer (95), Pro photographer (48), Casual photographer (41), Photography student (11)
    • Was this a gift?:
    • No (306), 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 449 customers

Displaying reviews 1-20

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5.0

Great Ball Head for Tripod

By Deborah

from undisclosed

Verified Buyer

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

I had a wonderful old tripod with a horrible awkward handled head on it. My mentor suggested this ball head and it works like a champ. I like the way it holds the camera steady with a minimum of adjustments.

 
5.0

Would buy again

By Charles

from undisclosed

Verified Buyer

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

Works well

 
5.0

Very happy with this purchase.

By Joseph

from undisclosed

Verified Buyer

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

I like the tension adjustment. You can use it to adjust your composition without actually loosening and locking down the head. It's nice when using the tripod to simply assist stabilization in lieu of being totally hands off. The tension setting keeps the camera positioned wherever you leave it. No need to lock it down tight unless you're tripping the shutter remotely.

 
5.0

Delivered promtply as promissed.

By KentB_Photography

from Greenfield, WI

Verified Buyer

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

No issues. Delivered promptly.

 
5.0

Great buy!

By Nigel

from undisclosed

Verified Buyer

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

Very easy to use, versatile tripod head. Used with Manfrotto MT190XPRO4 Aluminum Tripod.

 
5.0

I would buy the 496RC2 again'

By Robert

from undisclosed

Verified Buyer

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

I am a senior, and I am interested in lighter weight during a photo shoot and the 496RC2 affords me the stability I need with a Nikon D7200 and D810 and the Use of a Sigma 150-500mm. I also like the relative simplicity of its two controls and the 200pl camera plate is compatible with other Manfrotto ball heads. For my purposes this is a very effective ball head.

(2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

I would buy again

By Timothy

from undisclosed

Verified Buyer

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

Well built and easy to use with my Fuji XT-1.

 
4.0

Nice controls, heavy duty, and an easily fixed loose part

By Jon

from Undisclosed

See all my reviews

Site Member

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

Put this on an Oben CTM-2500 monopod and it's a good match, though a lighter duty head might be best if you're looking for low overall weight.   Used primarily with a Canon EOS7D-MkII and a 100-400mm for sports photography so the heavier duty 496RC2 Ball Head is a good match.

At the first event the set screw holding the top plate was loose.  Once home some thread lock stuff on the threads fixed the issue.

 
5.0

Great product

By Kory

from undisclosed

Verified Buyer

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

Excellent ballhead. Great functionality, not too heavy. Perfect for what I needed.

I would've liked this ball head to come with a thread adaptor as I assumed that it would fit onto my gorilla pod but I had to buy a thread adaptor.

(1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

 
4.0

Ballhead at price point that doesn't bust your stones

By Joe

from undisclosed

Verified Buyer

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

This is a good value for the money. It's not snooty enough to satisfy gear head aficionados but it is good enough to simply do its job. When I received the ball head, the allen screw in the top was loose. I tightened it up and now it is operating as advertised. I do my best to buy gear that has a chance of earning its keep and this ballhead is at a price point that it has a chance of making its money back. If you shoot portraits all the time in studio, you probably want a fancier piece of gear but this is fine for now.

 
5.0

Sturdy/Compact Tripod Ball Head

By RMB

from Undisclosed

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

Excellent tripod ball head for the money. Well built and easy to use.

(1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Just what I was expecting

By lennythexdca

from Michigan

Verified Buyer

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

After years of using standard 3-axis tripod heads this is the break I needed. Works well and supports my Nikon DSLR's with no problems - even when mounted with a 70-300mm zoom

 
5.0

Great product

By Lynx 36

from Kingston, Ontario

Verified Buyer

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

Very easy to use, has great holding capacity. Even with my 600 mm lens, the friction control works great.

(5 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Perfect for still photography and timelapse's

By Don Yawn

from New York

Verified Buyer

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

Works great for stills or any other situation where you need can quickly position the camera in any way you'd like (landscape, portrait, dutch angle, etc), lock the head in place firmly and quickly and leave it alone till you need to need to reframe.
This is not really meant for video unless your doing a time lapse or stationary whot where you don't need to pan or tilt, however I did use it on top of my Slider during an interview shoot, on top of my (Rhino Carbon EVO,) and it held a C300, with a zacuto cage, and a Canon 70-200mm 2.8 f/2.8 lense firmly when it was locked. Because it is a ball head it when you unlock the grip the entire weight of the camera/rig attached is loose and can fall in any direction so make sure you have a strong grip on the camera because you loosen the lock to reposition it.

I was honestly shocked it held us that weight so well however i would not advise getting this head for video unless your doing time lapses or need a stationary setup. I used this for a b cam on an interview shoot because i didn't have a proper video head at the time and i really wanted to test out my new slider. After that shoot ordered a Manfrotto 502hd head for video purposes because it can handle the weight better, you can pan/tilt, the fluid head let me adjust the resistance on that pan/tilt. (link: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/827210-REG/Manfrotto_MVH502AH_75Mm_Flat_Head.html)

(2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Fast, solid & dependable

By bike50now

from Downingtown, PA

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
    • Wildlife

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

    This was a replacement head for a similar model which lasted me for well over 10 years! The spring in the quick release/lock part broke. Manfrotto advised me over the phone of the problem. However, the part was not available in the U.S. and would have to be shipped from Italy. I decided for not too much more money to replace the entire head. If I get 10+ years out of this one, I'll be more than happy.
    This ball head is quick to maneuver and adjust and, being very used to its working style, it was a simple choice to stay with a ball head style and this model.
    Manfrotto - one of the best!

    • Was this a gift?:
    • No

    (4 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

     
    4.0

    Follows the reputation

    By ahawk989

    from San Francisco, Ca

    About Me Photo Enthusiast

    Verified Buyer

    Pros

    • Attaches Firmly
    • Good Stability
    • Strong Clamp

    Cons

    • Heavy

    Best Uses

    • Night Shots
    • Portraits
    • Travel
    • Video

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

    So in the interest of time, my setup is: 7D2, 24-105 f/4, CustomSLR Pro plate, hand/neck strap, and Gorillapods Focus mount... I decided to get the 496RC2 for the portable tripod in order to use the quick mounting of the Pro Plate and to allow for future extension into other larger tripods.

    It's not that light...it's made of many metal components, and definitely feels anything from "cheap plastic". The ball head is smooth, and I am able to get accurate control when working with it. Of course this isn't ideal for a traveling photographer to carry around a 1kg mini-tripod but it sure is convenient to not have to screw any plates in. That being said, I am a specific use case so yours might be completely different, but this is definitely a good budget head for the starting photographer. If you're starting out and need to have tight precision for panorama shots and landscape, consider the 498RC2.

    • Was this a gift?:
    • No

    (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

     
    4.0

    Love this ball head

    By pnutz

    from Brookings,Oregon

    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
      • Travel
      • Wildlife

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

      THIS IS MY FIRST BALL HEAD AND NOW I DON'T KNOW HOW EVER GOT ALONG WITHOUT ONE, BUT I MISS THE LONG HANDLE FOR PANNING . OTHER THAN THAT IT'S GREAT .

      • Was this a gift?:
      • No
       
      5.0

      Review of Manfrotto 496RC2

      By Emmett

      from Hilton Head

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

      Works very well, excellent head. Though out design, smooth action, intuitive lock/unlock.

       
      5.0

      Sturdy

      By Endurozw

      from Birmingham Alabama

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

      I'm not a cult follower of Manfrotto, just needed a sturdy mount for Astrophotography. This does the job well so far in the three times I've used it.

      (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

       
      5.0

      Perfect smaller cousin of the 498RC2

      By Aaron

      from Austin, TX

      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 use the 496RC2 as a secondary ball head to my Manfrotto 498RC2. I needed a smaller, lightweight version of the bigger 498RC2 and this is perfect for my needs, and it also accepts the same quick-release plates that my other Manfrotto ball heads use. I use it attached to my Star Adventurer motorized mount for tracking stars with my DSLR and it gives me full range of motion when aiming my camera into the night sky perfectly.

        • Was this a gift?:
        • No

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