Manfrotto 468MG Hydrostatic Ball Head - Design Review


The 468MG achieves its impressive load capacity thanks to its size and exceptionally tough construction. It’s a physically large head, measuring 13.5cm top to bottom, and weighs 650g, only 100g lighter than the classic 804RC2 pan-and-tilt head, so it’s not really one for lightweight hiking. Due to its size it’s really only suitable for use with larger tripods such as the 190 or 055 series.

The camera mounting plate is a 6.5cm-diameter disk with a deep textured rubber insert that grips the base of your camera very securely. It can be used with SLRs that have the standard 1/4-inch tripod bush thread, or with larger format or video cameras with a 3/8th-inch thread, thanks to an ingenious spring-loaded retractable outer thread ring. The thread is tightened by turning a wheel under the mounting plate. The 468MG is also available with any of Manfrotto’s four types of Rapid Connect quick-release mounting plates.

The main body of the 468MG is a solid casting of light but extremely strong magnesium alloy, with a large 4cm diameter Teflon-coated aluminium ball. The body has two slots allowing the camera to be tilted up to 90 degrees in either direction. It has a locking lever on one side which lets the whole head rotate on its base, allowing the camera to be panned smoothly through 360 degrees.