RRS L Plate and GFX100

Started 2 months ago | Discussions
cortex95x Forum Member • Posts: 65
RRS L Plate and GFX100

I've been a staunch supporter and purchaser of RRS products for as long as I can recall, but a recently received L-Plate has given me pause.  In hand, it appears to have been machined to the same level of high quality that I've grown to expect from RRS, but upon examining the items included with the plate I came across two strips of clear tape along with a card explaining their purpose.  Apparently, the L-Plate has the potential to scratch or otherwise deface the base of the camera, and it is suggested that the tape be applied to the camera—rather than the plate—to prevent same.  If RRS is aware of the potential for damage to a $10,000 camera, should they not have modified the plate to prevent same?  And are we not in essence defacing our own cameras with their tape?

I will be returning the L-plate and will search for a less potentially damaging alternative.  If any GFX100 owners have or are using non RRS Arca Swiss compatible tripod plates, L or not, I would be most interested in hearing about it.

Thank you in advance

JimKasson
JimKasson Forum Pro • Posts: 26,860
Re: RRS L Plate and GFX100

cortex95x wrote:

I've been a staunch supporter and purchaser of RRS products for as long as I can recall, but a recently received L-Plate has given me pause. In hand, it appears to have been machined to the same level of high quality that I've grown to expect from RRS, but upon examining the items included with the plate I came across two strips of clear tape along with a card explaining their purpose. Apparently, the L-Plate has the potential to scratch or otherwise deface the base of the camera, and it is suggested that the tape be applied to the camera—rather than the plate—to prevent same. If RRS is aware of the potential for damage to a $10,000 camera, should they not have modified the plate to prevent same? And are we not in essence defacing our own cameras with their tape?

I will be returning the L-plate and will search for a less potentially damaging alternative. If any GFX100 owners have or are using non RRS Arca Swiss compatible tripod plates, L or not, I would be most interested in hearing about it.

Thank you in advance

I saw the tape and threw it in the round file. I don’t intend to ever take the bracket off. When I sell my cameras, as I’m sure I’ll do someday with the GFX 100, I sell them with the plates attached.

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Rand 47 Contributing Member • Posts: 972
Re: RRS L Plate and GFX100
1

As I understand it, the clear plastic appliqué is RRS’s acknowledgement of the “painted” surface of the vertical grip on the GFX 100. And, in an abundance of caution the applique is intended to protect that paint when/if you loosen the mounting screw to “slide” the plate out to provide maximum clearance for tethering, etc.

I put them on. Easy peasy, transparent, no issues. And I don’t ever even intend to do any “plate sliding” anyway.

Rather than seeing this as RRS quality decreasing, I see it as RRS commitment to quality and “superior awareness” of potential issues for any plate attached to the painted, and perhaps scratch prone, vertical grip of the GFX 100.

NOTE: I should also mention that those two pieces of “plastic” are actually very precisely die-cut. The actual appliqué is smaller than the overall dimension of the “white strip” and fits very precisely on the vertical grip.

Rand

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OP cortex95x Forum Member • Posts: 65
Re: RRS L Plate and GFX100

Thank you. And yes, I understand that the application process is quite simple. Furthermore, I appreciate the fact that RRS is offering protection against the potential damage that their product could cause, but it is my position that the protective surface should have been applied to the product, and should not be the responsibility of the consumer.

Most likely, IMO, someone in their product liability, or legal department felt that offering a warning in the form of a clear tape application would absolve them of any future claims. But as Bill Clinton once said, "That dog won't hunt."

It had been suggested that the plate be installed in a permanent fashion, but my method of carry will not accommodate the added girth, so the plate must be installed when needed and subsequently removed.  If the camera were to reside in a strictly studio environment, permanent attachment would be the ideal solution but, alas, that is not the case.

But thank you all for your response to my query. I'll assume that you are all using RRS, as opposed to an alternative?

Rand 47 Contributing Member • Posts: 972
Re: RRS L Plate and GFX100
1

Have you considered that anything soft enough not to scratch would "drag" and make sliding the plate more difficult?  And, that even if applied to the plate, any debris trapped between plate & painted surface would do what?

I thought about this a lot, as my initial reaction was similar to yours.  But in thinking about it and installing it, their thinking makes sense to me.

Your mileage obviously varies! 😎

Rand

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OP cortex95x Forum Member • Posts: 65
Re: RRS L Plate and GFX100

Yes, of course, debris could act as an abrasive.  But that only comes into play if one is accustomed to sliding the plate on and off, or extending it to the side, as opposed to removing it by dropping it from the bottom.

Clearly, there is no perfect solution, and the tape may represent the best compromise, but having to modify one's camera, however minimal it may be, for the intended protective purpose, is odd at best.

Perhaps Fuji is in part to blame, but even the Leica SL's black surface is/was prone to scratches and scuffs, and I'd don't recall the RRS L-plate for the SL arriving with strips of protective tape.

Rand 47 Contributing Member • Posts: 972
Re: RRS L Plate and GFX100

“. . . But that only comes into play if one is accustomed to sliding the plate on and off, or extending it to the side, as opposed to removing it by dropping it from the bottom. . . . “

Exactly.... remember that a good many users of the GFX 100 will be working professionals who will routinely slide the plate out to create room for tethered shooting.

I don’t work that way, typically, so not an issue for me. I’m pretty certain that like Jim I could have just trashed the strips, put the plate on and use it like that permanently attached with little to no chance of scratching anything. But I’m a belt-and-suspenders kind of guy.

Rand

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Jvlahakis
Jvlahakis Regular Member • Posts: 441
Re: RRS L Plate and GFX100
2

Take a look at the Small Rig L bracket for the GFX 100. Really solid, has some nice buffer between the milled aluminum and the camera. Light and significantly less than RRS. Pretty much stays on my GFX all the time. Great value and impressive quality.

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JimKasson
JimKasson Forum Pro • Posts: 26,860
Re: RRS L Plate and GFX100

Jvlahakis wrote:

Take a look at the Small Rig L bracket for the GFX 100. Really solid, has some nice buffer between the milled aluminum and the camera. Light and significantly less than RRS. Pretty much stays on my GFX all the time. Great value and impressive quality.

I’ve never seen a Smallrig plate with a dovetail that meets RRS specs. Do you use yours with RRS cam clamps?

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Jvlahakis
Jvlahakis Regular Member • Posts: 441
Re: RRS L Plate and GFX100
1

I do not.  It fits perfectly, and it is one of the best L brackets I'ver ever owned.

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Greg7579
Greg7579 Veteran Member • Posts: 7,740
Re: RRS L Plate and GFX100

Hey Cortex,

I have the RRS L-Bracket being delivered today and have yet to shoot the GFX 100. I'm glad you say that the plate looks good and is well made.

But to be honest I don't care if it scratches the base. That plate will never come off and I don't care if the base is scratched a little. (You should see my GFX 50r!)

But I get your point. It is a valid point for sure.

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OP cortex95x Forum Member • Posts: 65
Re: RRS L Plate and GFX100

Hello,

I have no prior experience with Small Rig products, but are you suggesting that their plates do not mate with RRS bullhead clamps?  If so, their products would be a nonstarter for myself.

OP cortex95x Forum Member • Posts: 65
Re: RRS L Plate and GFX100

Jvlahakis wrote:

I do not. It fits perfectly, and it is one of the best L brackets I'ver ever owned.

When you say that it "fits perfectly," are you referring to the camera/plate combination or the Small Rig's ability to mate with a RRS—Arca Swiss styled— tripod head?

JimKasson
JimKasson Forum Pro • Posts: 26,860
Re: RRS L Plate and GFX100

Jvlahakis wrote:

I do not.

Then, if it's like the other Smallrigs I've used, it will be fine. Not so with the cam clamp.

It fits perfectly, and it is one of the best L brackets I'ver ever owned.

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JimKasson
JimKasson Forum Pro • Posts: 26,860
Re: RRS L Plate and GFX100

cortex95x wrote:

Hello,

I have no prior experience with Small Rig products, but are you suggesting that their plates do not mate with RRS bullhead clamps? If so, their products would be a nonstarter for myself.

They mate with the screw clamps, but the dovetail angle is wrong and they are too large for the cam clamps. At least that's true of the ones I've tested.

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OP cortex95x Forum Member • Posts: 65
Re: RRS L Plate and GFX100

Hi Jim,

Thank you for your speedy reply.

Fortunately,or unfortunately, I use the RRS large ..55 ballhead with clamp.  But I've decided to give the Small Rig L Bracket a go, and have ordered one.  Perhaps they've improved their dovetail but, regardless, I'll report back when I have received same and have had a chance to try it out.

JimKasson
JimKasson Forum Pro • Posts: 26,860
Re: RRS L Plate and GFX100

cortex95x wrote:

Hi Jim,

Thank you for your speedy reply.

Fortunately,or unfortunately, I use the RRS large ..55 ballhead with clamp. But I've decided to give the Small Rig L Bracket a go, and have ordered one. Perhaps they've improved their dovetail but, regardless, I'll report back when I have received same and have had a chance to try it out.

I'll be interested. If you find the clamp has a lot of resistance, I suggest not forcing it closed.

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Nikon D5 Sony a7 III Nikon Z7 Fujifilm GFX 100 Sony a7R IV +4 more
OP cortex95x Forum Member • Posts: 65
Re: RRS L Plate and GFX100

Greg7579 wrote:

Hey Cortex,

I have the RRS L-Bracket being delivered today and have yet to shoot the GFX 100. I'm glad you say that the plate looks good and is well made.

But to be honest I don't care if it scratches the base. That plate will never come off and I don't care if the base is scratched a little. (You should see my GFX 50r!)

But I get your point. It is a valid point for sure.

I am somewhat OCD about my equipment, and I tend to maintain all in pristine condition. Furthermore, unlike my other RRS plates/brackets, the GFX100 model appears to be quite bulky. And while this undoubtedly contributes to its sturdiness, its girth would preclude permanent attachment to my camera, as the combination would not fit into my carry bag. I'll be returning it, and I'll give the Small Rig alternative a try, with the understanding that it might not play nice with my RRS ballhead/clamp mount.

OP cortex95x Forum Member • Posts: 65
Re: RRS L Plate and GFX100
1

Thanks, I'll keep that in mind.

Most of my shooting is done handheld, and my tripods spend most of their boring lives in a closet.  But after some consideration, I was reminded that I'd never really enjoyed using the clamp closure.  Since you've indicated that the RRS screw/clamp closure mechanism works with the Small Rig plates I will be replacing the Lever clamp with the RRS Screw clamp for use withy my RRS BH-55 head.  That should hopefully solve the potential mating issue.  However, I will still report back in re the Lever Clamp and its compatibility, or lack thereof, with the Small Rig plate.

Thanks again for your advice.

Jvlahakis
Jvlahakis Regular Member • Posts: 441
Re: RRS L Plate and GFX100
1

I have the same RRS ball head and the Small Rig works perfectly fine with it.

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Sigma dp2 Quattro Leica M-Monochrom Olympus E-M1 II Olympus OM-D E-M1X Fujifilm GFX 100 +14 more
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