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Manfrotto vs Arca Swiss Release System
  
 
CenterFire14
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · Manfrotto vs Arca Swiss Release System


So I was watching videos on Youtub and eventually stumbled upon Arca Swiss tripods. Me being an amertuer, only knew about Manfrotto, until now.

I've been trying to do some research to find the differences between the two. Is one better than the other? Or is one better suited for situation ABC, where the other is better for XYZ?

From what I gathered, I've read a lot of pros prefer the Arca Swiss style release system. The mounting system is somewhat universal - it does not seem it has been completely standardized yet. There are also a ton of aftermarket camera mount/plate manufacturers. They also range in difference sizes - which can be useful for larger/heavier set ups.

Two of the biggest things I've noticed about Arca Swiss is that it uses a screw to lock the mount in place (whereas Manfrotto uses a lever). People have said that the lever system can be bad because you can think the lever is fully locked in place - but it may not, thus potentially causing the camera to fall off the tripod. To get around this issue Arca Swiss has 2 anti-slip/movement tabs to prevent the camera from falling off the tripod.

Besides this - what else is different/unique about the Arca Swiss? I'm mostly interested in learning more about Arca Swiss (not so much Manfrotto).



Aug 02, 2017 at 11:32 PM
doc4x5
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · Manfrotto vs Arca Swiss Release System


Arca-Swiss does not make tripods; they do make tripod heads, excellent ones, including the incomparable, and expensive "cube." I believe you're referring to the Arca -Swiss dovetail system which is used by a number of manufacturers. These other manufacturers, such as Really Right Stuff, and Acratech and others use the Arca standard dovetail. When locked in place, these are very secure systems. They require a plate on the camera (or telephoto lens if it has a foot). I've used Arca compatible gear for many years and swear by it, and not often at it. It can be obtained with screws or levers, depending on the manufacturer. My Arca B-1 uses a screw, my Scratch uses a lever. The Really Right Stuff heads are available with either. The Arca-Swiss system is arguably the gold standard for attaching a camera to a tripod or monopod. While I do not have experience with Manfrotto, many people use it quite successfully. Do some looking on the net. Good luck to you.


Aug 03, 2017 at 12:21 AM
CenterFire14
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · Manfrotto vs Arca Swiss Release System


doc4x5 wrote:
I believe you're referring to the Arca -Swiss dovetail system which is used by a number of manufacturers.

You are correct. My apologies for any confusion.

I've been looking at some of the stuff by RRS. Good stuff.

So since you've been a long time user of Arca-Swiss, what else do you like about it? Dislike about it?

When you say "gold standard", would you mind quantifying what you mean by that?

Also - do you know how "universal/standardized" the dovetail system is? Ie: any given particular manufacturers mount will work with XX% of the Arca Swiss systems.



Aug 03, 2017 at 02:30 AM
EB-1
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · Manfrotto vs Arca Swiss Release System


All the best and the cheap knockoffs as well have chosen the A-S dovetail as the standard clamp design. I mix and match Kirk, Wimberley, 4th generation, Markins, RRS, A-S, etc. components. Manfrotto is very limited by comparison. The RRS lever-lock clamps are finicky and much grief in compatibility can be avoided by using the

EBH



Aug 03, 2017 at 02:37 AM
Speedliner
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · Manfrotto vs Arca Swiss Release System


The universality of Arca Swiss is its main advantage. Since you're familiar with Manfrotto you've noticed that there are various heads with director deferent plates types. Their products are great, but as you accumulate heads for different purposes, you may find the ease of switching heads, adding focus rails, etc...more convenient when the plate on your camera or lens foot is compatible with all. That's easier to achieve with Arca.


Aug 07, 2017 at 01:24 PM
 

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hokiejokey
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · Manfrotto vs Arca Swiss Release System


Agree with the universality. I use the Capture Clip system with a hand grip for my 6d. Because the system uses an A-S compatible mount I can quickly drop it on my tripod head when I need to without having to replace the plate. That's a big plus for me.


Aug 07, 2017 at 02:40 PM
Craig Gillette
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · Manfrotto vs Arca Swiss Release System


Manfrotto was also a reliable and economical alternative to the high end product lines. It was pretty universally available but you could still be stuck where some types of heads only came in a particular mount and I'd guess because the pan/tilts allowed for easy tilt (to portrait) and moving in fixed pans or elevations, they didn't jump too quickly to L brackets very well, let alone dedicated brackets and plates. OTOH, they were noticeably less expensive, too.

The AS system allowed for a lot more flexibility in using plates that could be dedicated to a specific body, or, with the open ends, could be adjusted easily for balance, nodal points, etc. When a broader range of price competitive AS compatible suppliers came along, the Manfrotto economic advantage was less compelling, too.



Aug 09, 2017 at 01:06 AM
Michael White
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · Manfrotto vs Arca Swiss Release System


I converted all my Manfrotto rc2 to as qds they are much better and I didn't like having to work between two different plates


Aug 09, 2017 at 04:13 AM
jcolwell
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · Manfrotto vs Arca Swiss Release System


Here's a recent thread on the same topic. It includes some example photos and links to older threads with many examples of adapting & converting Manfrotto RC2 and RC4 QR systems to Arca-Swiss systems.

Is there a better system to replace Manfrotto 410PL QR plates?
- http://www.fredmiranda.com/forum/topic/1501976/



Aug 09, 2017 at 11:31 AM







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