Manfrotto has just released an updated version of its famous MH496-BH ball head: the MH496-Q6. This new version now features an Arca-compatible quick release plate with Top Lock System. Let’s take a closer look at it!
As filmmakers, our use of traditional ball heads is rare, as they’re limited when it comes to pan/tilt smoothness capabilities. However, they’re very fast to set up, lightweight, compact, and I still use one on my motorized slider.
The Manfrotto MH496-BH has been out for a couple of years now, and Manfrotto has just released a new model, the MH496-Q6, with a new top plate.
Manfrotto MH496-Q6 features
“If it works, don’t fix it,” and that’s exactly what Manfrotto did with the new MH496-Q6; they just improved what is already a great product.
The new MH496-Q6 has the same design as its predecessor; the pan/tilt locking knobs are at the same place, it’s still made out of aluminum, and the maximum payload is the same at up to 12kg/26.4lbs. The weight of this new MH496-Q6 is slightly heavier at 0.5kg/1.1lbs compared to 0.4kg/0.88lbs, so it won’t make a huge difference in your kit.
The main difference between both models is the new Q6 top plate on the MH496-Q6. This quick-release top plate is Arca-compatible, which allows you to slide your camera back and forth to find the perfect balance. Also, the Q6 plate features Manfrotto’s Top Lock System. This double locking system gives you the peace of mind that your camera won’t slip out if you turn the locking knob accidentally. Indeed, with this double locking mechanism, you need to press the red button to release your camera fully.
Last but not least, this Q6 plate features three built-in leveling bubbles, one per axis, so you can get your camera leveled quickly.
Price and availability
The MH496-Q6 is available now for $139/€139. As a comparison, the MH496-BH is $104/€102.
For more information, please visit Manfrotto’s website here.
What do you think about this new Manfrotto ball head? Do you often use a ball head? Which quick-release do you use for your cameras? Don’t hesitate to let us know in the comments down below!