Manfrotto 501HDV Review with SLIK Pro 700dx

This is an interesting combination of the SLIK Pro 700dx with the Manfrotto 501HDV, which is a great tripod head if you are going to be doing both video and still shots with your DSLR (but only want to buy one tripod head).


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If you have the budget, you may want to get a dedicated photography head and the 501HDV, but if you are on a tight budget, the 501HDV works well for video and works pretty well for photography.  I’ve used it for both and the only real issue I could see would be if you need to tilt rapidly.  Tilting is when you move the lens up and down but not side to side, which is known as panning. The stabilization system on the 501HDV dampens the tilt movement slightly to give you smooth tilting.

This is an entry-level head that you can match up with a set of legs made for photography.

Manfrotto 501HDV Features

One of the things I like about the Manfrotto 501HDV is the on/off switch that allows you to engage the counterbalance system depending on your filming setup.  The counterbalance helps to smooth out your tilt movements.

It also has separate pan and tilt locks, a tilt friction adjustment system and quick release camera plates.

This replaces the Manfrotto heads 3063 and 136.

Manfrotto 501HDV: Is it right for you?

If you’re shooting DSLR video and you don’t intend to go full out in terms of extra screens and accessories, then this should work for you.  If you want something that can handle a lot of weight, then consider a video head made to handle more weight and to go with a dedicated set of video legs which will give you more stability.

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That’s it for the Manfrotto 501HDV – I own one and I really enjoy it when shooting video.

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