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Manfrotto 324RC2 light duty grip ball head

5.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

Price: CDN$ 210.22
Only 1 left in stock.
Ships from and sold by langton_distribution.
17 new from CDN$ 185.98
  • New hollow stainless steel ball^Special ergonomic design^Secure friction control^Built in quick release
  • New hollow stainless steel ball^Special ergonomic design^Secure friction control^Built in quick release

Product Details

  • Product Dimensions: 10.3 x 12.3 x 19.7 cm ; 431 g
  • Shipping Weight: 522 g
  • Item model number: 324RC2
  • ASIN: B003CRGZJS
  • Date first available at Amazon.ca: Feb. 23 2011
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #147,575 in Electronics (See Top 100 in Electronics)
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Product Description

The 324RC2 is built to satisfy the needs of photographers who are improving their skills. Very light, compact and easy to carry, the 324RC2's ergonomics have been tuned for comfort during use. This model features a new type of ball joint: an innovative hollow sphere made of stainless steel. This new manufacture technique was specifically developed to improve the lightness, accuracy and locking strength of the head. Weight reduction, improved performance and optimized ergonomics set this new head well above competitors' models and offer photographers products which are lightweight, compact and easy to carry, intuitive and easy to use, yet also extremely precise and sturdy. TECHNICAL SPECIFICATIONS: Height 3.98"; Weight .95lbs; Maximum Capacity 7.7 lbs; Pan 360deg.


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Top Customer Reviews

Very good quality easy to use The head locks in with 3 set screws so will not unscrew like a lot of other brands Received within days Ontario Canada
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Typical Manfrotto quality and excellent design. A little heavier than I would of liked, but it's construction, design and operation are all world class.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0x9e78ff84) out of 5 stars 17 reviews
39 of 39 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9e61bcb4) out of 5 stars Great improvement and a worthy purchase Aug. 15 2010
By Anthony V. Loh - Published on Amazon.com
I also owned a Manfrotto 322 Joystick head, and my review will be based on the comparison between the two.

1.) Function/weight. If you are already familiar with the 322, the 324 works exactly the same way as the 322, only is much lighter. It will fit better with a lighter weight tripod (e.g., a Manfrotto 190 models/Benro Travel Angel/Gitzo, etc).

2.) Quality. The 322 is made up solid steel which can take the roughest handling. The 324 seems quite solid in its own right, but it is definitely not made of solid steel, and I have my doubt whether it could be used as the same way as the 322.

3.) Ergonomic. The handle in 322 is quite flat; while the 324 has a much better ergonomic. The holding of the 324 feels better than the 322. Having said that, however, the 322 has it advantage of being "flat". Both side of the 322 have holes to allow you to change the "plate holder" by unscrewing it and screwed it on the other side; hence, allowing you to have the option to navigate the joystick head with either you right (default) or left hand (if you decided to change it). The 324, however, takes away that option. With the 324m, you are now limited to only squeezing the "trigger" with you right hand.

4.) Weight capacity. The 322 can take much heavier weight and thus heavier lenses. The 324 is for smaller lenses. Nonetheless, it handles the combo of Nikon D300S and the Nikkor 70-200mm VR II (the heaviest pair that I own) with a combined weight of more than 2kgs (4.4 Ibs) without problem at all. I don't know how would it performs with camera/lenses heavier than the Nikon D300S/Nikkor 70-200mm VR II combo, but I don't think it wouldn't have much problem with up to a 3kg load. Anything heavier than that you will want to use either 327, or stick with the 322.

To me, it is a worthy purchase and it makes the reason a lightweight tripod more justifiable - what's the point of buying a tripod that weight less than 1kg (2.2 Ibs) but paired it with a joystick head, such as the 322, which weight almost the same weight as the tripod?
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9e61d0d8) out of 5 stars Good product, but...... Sept. 15 2011
By Nevada - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
This is a good product. If you hadn't anything to compare it against, you'd probably be ok with it; however, Manfrotto makes a better product...the 322. Yes, you have to pack an extra HALF pound around, and yes it costs like 10 bucks more or something, but the 322 is so much SMOOTHER (not even close...I mean NOT-EVEN-CLOSE to the 324), and it is also a lot more solid when the trigger is let go.

This product, the 324 is small, compact, light, and will get the job done for most photographers who don't need to constantly pan horizontally or rotate vertically to follow something. If you are setting up to shoot sunsets, flowers, perched birds etc. etc. this ball head may be just the ticket for you and the half pound savings would probably be worth it. It is very solid and I expect it will handle all but the very biggest camera/lens combos. So my issue is with the movement, not the steadiness. I bought this for a spotting scope. Since I constantly pan and rotate the scope, when I unboxed the 324 and played with it, my heart sank. I have the Brunton version of the 322 and it is far smoother. I can tell it wasn't a lube problem with the 324. It was sticky, jerky, and plain rough. I tried the adjustment hex screw and it didn't solve the problem. Tried the friction knob...no luck. What finally worked for me?...I ordered a 322 (accepting the 0.5 lb increase, sigh) and it is the most amazingly smooth but solid joystick head I've ever handled...even better than my Brunton clone of the 322.

Final recommendation...this is a very good head, and for many this will be plenty nice enough with the lower cost and benefit of lower weight. For me, hands down the 322 is a far better head. I would like to try the 327 but expect that since it uses the same ball as the 324, I would be perhaps wasting my time. Thrilled with my new 322. Thank you amazon for taking back my 324.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9e61d504) out of 5 stars Great, but there are quality issues Nov. 26 2011
By Danny Grizzle - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
The first Manfrotto 324RC2 Joystick Head I received had a minor problem -- it was missing one of the screws securing the camera stage to the joystick. Since the camera stage was held by only one screw instead of two, there was no way to be confident that the camera was properly secured. I almost kept the head, but decided it would take too much time to hunt down the specialized fastener, plus single screw sales annoy industrial parts suppliers, who usually require a minimum purchase. I'd have to buy 50 to get the one I needed.

Amazon promptly sent a replacement. But the second joystick head also had a minor assembly error - the bubble level was never glued in place, only inserted into the head without any adhesive.

Obviously, Manfrotto is having manufacturing problems. Both heads suffered problems not with the design, but due to careless assembly.

I'd recommend this product, but would caution a very close inspection. Neither of the issues above were apparent upon unboxing the product. In fact, I had to go dumpster diving to retrieve the packaging in order to return the first unit.

Failure to glue in the bubble level seems like no big deal, but it is essential because leveling the camera is the entire purpose of this device. I decided to keep the second head, but I may regret it later if I don't have the right glue, have to drive across town to buy something, fight holiday traffic, then mess up application and smudge glue on the parts or else ruin my clothes. Minor issues like this too often take on a life all their own.

Apart from the manufacturing problems, if there is anything to wish for in this device, it would be including of a separate riser. As you can see from the photo, the base mounting point of the joystick head is not very tall. For most applications on a tripod, this is probably OK. But it would help to have an optional spacer to insure full range motion in the joystick in all applications.

In my case, I am not mounting on a tripod, but rather on a cheeseplate platform on a small tabletop camera dolly used for video. This head is certainly strong enough for a DSLR, and very nicely designed. The parts are strong and nicely finished -- highly recommended other than reservations about careless assembly.
7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9e61d51c) out of 5 stars Solid, well-constructed, useful June 29 2010
By Eric Falsken - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
Unfortunately, I'm in the process of up-sizing my camera (Nikon D90 with an AF-S 24-70 1:2.8G ED) so this grip is a little small. That said, it's able to hold my entire camera/lens in position without any drift, even in a vertical position (with the camera mounted on a horizontal arm). The handle is very easy to grip and manipulate, but if your lens has any weight (shifting the center of balance too far out from the body) you'll need to keep a hand on your camera while using the other to manipulate the grip. Definitely NOT GOOD for smooth panoramic shots. The ball has to be lubricated with some sort of oil or grease (how often probably depends on how/where you use it). Unfortunately, my fingers seem to always stray too near the ball and I get the oil on my fingers because one side of the ball is open/exposed so that it can be easily rotated into a portrait orientation. In addition to the ball movement, it's hard to see in the pictures, but the grip also allows the entire mount to rotate around the handle's collar (elevation), useful for pointing the camera straight down without the need for a horizontal arm or bracket.

As for the value, I'm still getting into photography, and $150 is a lot for a tripod head (even before buying the tripod), but rest assured that this head is very well constructed and worth every penny if a ball-head grip is what you're looking for. For most photographers, I think I'd still recommend Manfrotto 496RC2 Ball Head with Quick Release as a better starter head.
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9e61d540) out of 5 stars Manfrotto 324RC2 Lives Up To Expectations May 1 2011
By Gino - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
After doing much research, I decided that a ball head with a single control joystick grip was what I wanted. The difficult choice was between the heavy duty 327RC2 or this one, but after reading some other reviews, I decided that the 324RC2 was sufficient for my purposes. While vacationing in California, I did several hikes in the Coachella Valley and Mojave Desert national and state parks, not to mention taking the scenic route back home through Arizona and Utah. The head worked perfectly in tandem with my carbon fiber tripod. The grip was extremely easy to use and for the most part, the control knob to adjust the tightness of the grip was set on low. Even when my D300 was coupled with a Sigma 20-200mm f2.8 zoom, the weight was not a problem for the grip. While I was doing some heavy duty climbing at Anzo Borrego State Park, I accidentally dropped the tripod & grip against some rocks. The bubble level apparently popped out of its mooring, but I didn't discover this until much later into the hike. I called the company that handles Manfrotto equipment in my area, and was told that sometimes, the glue and O-ring isn't always effectively inserted during assembly. After all, the impact wasn't that hard, but somehow, both bubble and O-ring came out. Fortunately, the replacement pieces will only cost me $12, which was a relief. Overall, I'm very happy with my new investment and strongly recommend the 324RC2.