I don’t usually do kit reviews, but this simple bit of kit has made life so much easier recently, it’s relatively cheap and worth it’s weight in gold if your a landscape photographer.
I have been shooting lots of landscapes since my arrival in New Zealand, especially long exposure images. I always find myself switching the camera from landscape to portrait and back again quite frequently. I was doing this simply by altering the position of the tripod head, but this would require re-leveling each time, and sometimes caused the whole rig to become a bit unstable due to the position of the camera in relation to the legs.
I had seen the L Brackets made by Really Right Stuff, (RRS) and Kirk Enterprises, both of which looked like quality products, but wow were they expensive, especially as I needed the version that would fit a gripped body. Looking through other outlets such as Amazon, Ebay and Trademe over here in New Zealand I came across what looked to be a carbon copy of the kirk plate, but at a fraction of the cost. Could it be any good, would the quality be as high as the more expensive alternatives? Not being able to justify the cost of the RRS or Kirk brackets, I took a chance on the I Shoot bracket and purchased it online. The cost saving was significant at around $130 dollars.
The delivery time to New Zealand was stated around 6-8 weeks from China, why so long in this day and age I have no idea, but I was pleasantly surprised when it turned up 2 weeks later, just in time for a trip away.
First impressions of the bracket were excellent, it came in a protective cloth pouch and the quality of the CNC machining was as high as I have seen. It is obviously a rip of from the Kirk model, probably produced in the same factory?
The large cut out’s in the end allow the battery tray to be removed and the side ports on the camera to be accessed with the bracket in place, which means I pretty much leave it on all the time, as it does not add significantly to the bulk of the camera.
The images above show the bracket fitted to my Gripped Canon 5D MK3, and mounted to a Manfrotto 410 geared head, retro fitted with an Arca-Swiss clamp.