Quick Review of the New Manfrotto 494 Ball Head
+ I like the new quick release plate. It has a 'd' ring meaning that a coin or screwdriver is not needed in order to fit or remove a camera.
+ Pretty smooth ball movement, although not Sirui K-40X smooth, but that's probably not a fair comparison as the Sirui has a much larger ball, is heavier and much more expensive.
+ The knobs are all captive i.e. they won't unscrew all the way off. I have really disliked previous Manfrotto ball head where this wasn't the case.
+ The cutouts for use with the Befree tripod range are nice (just a shame I can't get the levelling head if by Befree Live in order to allow me to utilise them )
+ It may be possible to replace the clamp with an arca-swiss one. I haven't tried yet by probably will at some point.
- While the plate works in the one arca-swiss clamp I tried (a ProMediaGear), I cannot get the ball head to accept any arca-swiss plates.
This may not be a negative, just something to note. It is a shame Manfrotto couldn't make the head accept both, it would have been nice.
Overall I am pleased with my purchase.