Manfrotto 190 Go! carbon-fibre tripod
Last year saw Manfrotto break a longstanding tradition and introduce a version of its popular 190-series tripod that used twist rather than lever locks on the leg sections. This made it the lightest model in the 190 range, and we liked it a lot. So it’s great to see Manfrotto following it up with an even lighter carbon-fi bre version, which offers a 320g weight saving over the aluminium model, but otherwise near-identical dimensions and specifi cations.
This means you get an unusually adjustable tripod, with four-section legs that can each be individually set to four different angles using large, easy-to-press levers. The centre-column height is adjusted using a wing nut that’s equally easy to operate. But the 190 Go!’s real trump card is that the centre column can be rotated 90° to a horizontal position using a clever retractable mechanism activated by pushing a button at the end of the column. It can then be freely rotated to whatever position you need.
The aluminium 190 Go! was our favourite tripod design of last year, and this version is even better. It’s not just lighter, but it’s also stiffer; with a heavy camera or long lens on top, it’s noticeably better at dampening vibrations. However, it retains all the best features of the older model, with large, easy-to-use controls that make it quick to set up. Despite its light weight it’s impressively sturdy; strong enough to support a full-frame DSLR with a 70-200mm f/2.8 zoom, while being tall enough to lift the camera to eye level for a 6ft-tall photographer.
Obviously, this all comes at a premium, and at $399 for the leg set without a head, it’s twice the price of the aluminium version. But if you can stomach the cost, it’s probably worth it, especially if you carry your tripod long distances or use a large camera.
- Easy-link connector. A 3/8in socket on the central spider can be used to attach accessories such as Magic Arms for holding lights.
- 3/8in connector. This is compatible with many heads, but those with 1⁄4in threads will need an adapter.
- Strap lug. This is used to attach Manfrotto’s carry strap. It can also be used to hang a camera bag for extra stability.