For light weight camera gear Manfrotto fluid heads are a pretty good value and I’ve standardized my kit around the 501PL QR plate. I recently ordered this 501PL plate from amazon, as you can see from the video it’s not a very good product. If you’ve used this QR plate, it’s pretty easy to spot the problems.

Manfrotto 501 QR plate (1 of 1)

This is what a normal 501PL plate looks like, infact even the cloned versions look like this. The QR plate I ordered from Amazon looks legitimate, the packaging (you can see in the video) looks like the real thing and the numbers on the package check out. It appears Manfrotto has quietly started feeding these inferior QR plates into the market. An insertable plastic numb? What a load of crap. Thanks Manfrotto.

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