Manfrotto 322 RC2 Heavy Duty Grip Ballhead

Mini-Review

Another purchase made in Dubai a good few years back, when perhaps my knowledge of photography gear was still in its infancy. I was initially very impressed with the design whilst in the shop and it certainly looked very easy too use. Very solid and felt like a quality piece of kit too. What could be simpler than just squeezing the grip, repositioning and then letting go. Great idea, but one major flaw. When you release the handle, no matter how gently or fast, or whatever your friction setting, the ball position would always move very slightly, leaving your camera not positioned quite where you wanted. In the end this became absolutely infuriating and mine was dispatched to eBay. Manfrotto are still selling this model, but also have a couple of newer designs. I can’t recommend this particular one however. Great idea, though, but you’d better try before you buy.

John R. Birch (28.06.2013)

Manfrotto 322 RC2 Heavy Duty Grip Ball-Head

Manufacturers Description

Take the versatility of a ball head, add true ergonomic control and you get the 322RC2: a photographic head that allows you to unblock, move, position and lock your camera with one hand in one position thanks to the revolutionary design of its grip handle, which incorporates the ball lock lever and can also mount the 322RS shutter release accessory. A friction control wheel lets you regulate the power of the blocking mechanism to match the weight of your camera/lens. The 322RC2 is made from magnesium for lightweight performance, and is designed to keep the weight of your kit as close as possible to the tripod’s centre of gravity by way of its reduced height. It is this fact, matched with the precision construction of the 322RC2 that gives the head its load capacity of 5kg. Complete with built-in bubble spirit level and quick release camera plate (standard 1/4′ screw, with secondary safety pin). Suitable for use with 35mm or medium format cameras.

Features

Bubble Level

The built-in, carefully hand-set bubble spirit level helps make sure your horizons really are horizontal.

222-322 Ball Friction

Separate control for pre-setting the friction of the ball when unblocked. The position of the red line indicates the approximate amount of friction applied.

Q-R Camera Plate 200-PL

The compact, rectangular 200PL quick release plate system fits neatly under small-bodied still cameras up to SLR (even with tele lenses) or small medium format, or under small video cameras or spotting scopes. Its rubber pad gives a good grip without damaging the camera, and its angled sides ensure that it also fits perfectly and tightly into a wide range of Manfrotto heads

Reversible Column

Reversible centre column allows head and camera to be mounted below the tripod – useful for: low-level shooting (because it keeps the tripod and your equipment out of the mud); working with heavy loads (because weight lowers the tripod’s centre of gravity, making it more stable); and also for use with ‘mirror-image’ view cameras.

Secondary Security Lock

This head features a secondary security lock so you can’t accidentally release the plate (and camera) without meaning to. The lock stops the quick release lever from opening fully.

Single Lock

A convenient single locking mechanism blocks or frees movement on all axes for greater speed of use.

Construction

Sturdy all-metal construction.

Ergonomic

Ergonomic and easy to use.

Low Centre of Gravity

By keeping the head and camera mounting plate as low as possible, the camera is kept safely closer to the tripod’s centre of gravity for more stable support.

 
attaches by
1/4” screw attachment type
 
attachment
3/8″ female thread attachment type
 
ball friction setting
yes
 
bubble spirit level (no.)
1 number
Colour
black colour
front tilt
-90° / +90° tilt range
 
independent pan lock
no
lateral tilt
+90° / -3 tilt range
 
material
magnesium
panoramic rotation
360 °
 
patent
pat. pending
plate type
200PL-14
quick release
yes
 
secondary safety system
yes
 
safety payload
5 kg (11.02 lbs)
weight
0.7 kg (1.54 lbs)
working height
10.3

 

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