Manfrotto has just released a new fluid video head for filmmakers: the Manfrotto 504X. This revamp of the original 504HD video head features a 12Kg/26.5lbs maximum payload capacity, a flat base mount, and a four-step counterbalance system for cameras up to 6.5Kg/14.3lbs. Let’s take a closer look at this new budget tripod head!
Manfrotto 504X Design
The Manfrotto 504X fluid video head is the evolution of the previous 504HD. The new version is now more compact and lighter at 2Kg/4.4lbs.
One thing that a lot of filmmakers will like is the new flat base (finally!). A lot of the original design features of the Manfrotto 504X comes from its big brothers, the 608/612 video heads from the Nitrotech series.
As you can see, the new pan/tilt brake and adjustment mechanisms of the 504X are similar to the Nitrotech 608/612. You can attach the included pan bar on both sides of the tripod head, and both pan bar mounting points feature a 3/8-16″ mounting thread, which is Manfrotto anti-rotation and ARRI pin compatible.
At the back of the head, there is the pan lock knob, as well as a little illuminated bubble level. This light is handy when you’re trying to level your head in dark shooting conditions.
One excellent addition to the Manfrotto 504X is the new sliding plate attachment with a side-lock mechanism. It allows you to drag and drop your camera directly on the tripod head without having to slide it from the back.
Manfrotto 504X Features
The Manfrotto 504X can take a maximum payload of 12Kg/26.5lbs. This payload capacity is pretty impressive; however, keep in mind that you won’t be able to counterbalance that much weight.
Indeed, the 504X features a four steps counterbalance system with a maximum payload of 6.5Kg/14.3lbs. Also, the maximum height of your camera package should not exceed 55mm/2.2in C.O.G. for maximum performances. I have a Manfrotto 608 tripod head and had issues in the past with my Canon C200 rig being too tall to balance correctly.
Finally, you can operate the 504X under rude temperatures ranging from -30°C to 60°C. The head is made from aluminum, which should last you a long time.
Pricing and Availability
The Manfrotto 504X video head is available now for $399.00/€362.00. Also, several tripods kits are available, including ones with the new Fast Twin tripod legs.
What do you think about the Manfrotto 504X? Do you have the original Manfrotto 504HD video head? Let us know in the comments below!