Photography

Custom SLR M-Plate Pro (with BlackRapid Strap)

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Quick-attach camera to any tripod while using your favorite camera strap

The previously reviewed BlackRapid camera straps (and their variations) are a revelation in themselves, allowing a camera to be securely hung over a shoulder and that camera is both out of the way and easily put to your eye. But photographers also need to put that camera easily onto a tripod.

Everybody knows that the easiest way to get a lot of sharpness in your photo is to use a tripod – but the BlackRapid straps use the tripod mount bolt hole, making a fast stick-it-to-a-tripod connection a memory. Especially if your tripod uses a fast-release plate. Now, BlackRapid makes a plate that has a hollow in the bottom for their strap to clip to, and once you remove the strap you can use an Arca-Swiss headed tripod. Better, but this is still too fiddly. Custom SLR’s M-Plate Pro offsets the strap connection from the tripod plate. The M-Plate Pro also allows tripod connection to either Arca-Swiss or Manfrotto quick release heads – without removing the strap. Three-in-one. Less fiddly, more flexible. Security is better since there’s no time your camera is unstrapped.

This M-Plate Pro plate is a single chunk of machined aluminum with a hex head bolt attaching it to your camera. At $70 I think it’s a bit overpriced but I haven’t found an alternative. It’s a very simple, solid design that gets the job done in the most effective way possible, just like a Cool Tool should.

-- Wayne Ruffner 02/23/16