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The Nikon d850 is an extremely popular professional-level camera body that just keeps growing in popularity as the months come and go and its reputation keeps getting stronger and stronger due to its outstanding performance. Just like all of the popular camera bodies out there, we always see photographers and videographers reaching out for advice on what camera accessories they should be looking to add to their collection to get the most out of their camera.
We are constantly seeing people reaching out for advice on what tripod they should be using with their d850. Although Induro, Benro, and Gitzo do have some solid tripods in their range, we feel that sticking with Manfrotto is probably going to be the best way to go. Not only does Manfrotto have one of the best reputations amongst tripod brands at the time of writing, but they also offer some of the best build quality and performance going offering you peace of mind that your d850 that costs thousands of dollars will be safe while mounted to it during use.
Although the argument can most definatley be made that something like the Manfrotto MT057C3-G is the best Manfrotto tripod for Nikon d850 cameras on the market right now, you also have to factor in the price of the tripod. Although the MT057C3-G has an excellent reputation with a a ton of glowing independent reviews from third-party photographers and videographers, it is very expensive and we feel that there are other options from Manfrotto that are almost as good but over half the price.
For example, the Manfrotto MT055CXPRO3 offers some excellent performance, has a great build quality, is very easy to use, and has a number of d850 owners who already use it as their go-to tripod of choice while being just under half of the current price of the Manfrotto MT057C3-G. On top of this, the MT055CXPRO3 also has a large number of excellent reviews from photographers and videographers too. Due to this, we feel that in the grand scheme of things, more of our readers will be able to get everything they need from the MT055CXPRO3 while potentially saving hundreds of dollars.
Now, if you are on a tighter budget, the Manfrotto MT055CXPRO3 is also available with an Aluminum build with an even lower price tag but if you travel on a regular basis or want the best support possible for your d850 then we would highly recommend the Carbon Fiber build. That said though, some photographers and videographers working in certain niches where they rarely need to travel should easily be able to get what they need from the Aluminum variant
Due to this, we will be taking a more in-depth look at the Manfrotto MT055CXPRO3 tripod throughout the rest of the article and setting the Manfrotto MT057C3-G aside for now. Depending on the niches you work in you can also add either a Manfrotto 502 Video Head or Manfrotto XPRO Ball Head (an excellent bit of kit that we highly recommend) to your camera accessories for superior image stabilization and image quality from your d850 during use.
Performance And Functionality
Now, many photographers look at their various camera accessories as one of three main categories. Either a cost such as traveling to a location, a consumable such as batteries for your flash unit, or an investment like the Manfrotto MT055CXPRO3. We have absolutely no doubt in our minds that the MT055CXPRO3 is an excellent investment that will stand the test of time and continue to provide your Nikon d850 with the best possible image stabilization for many years to come.
The premium Carbon Fiber build allows the MT055CXPRO3 to support a maximum load capacity of up to 19.8 pounds of camera payload weight. As your Nikon d850 comes in at around two pounds of payload weight free from any camera accessories, the tripod offers plenty of spare load capacity to load up with anything you need to meet the needs of your session.
In addition to being able to support some extremely heavy d850 camera setups, the tripod also performs perfectly with longer, heavier camera lenses too as you are able to offset their weight by adjusting the tripod legs as required. This ensures that you can mount any lens you require to your camera without having to worry about it having an effect on the center of gravity and potentially tipping your tripod over.
Thankfully, the Manfrotto MT055CXPRO3 comes in with a maximum usable height of 170cm ensuring that your tripods height requirements will be met easily. On top of this, the ability to fully rotate the central column through ninety degrees allows you to set it up for some great overhead images for food or products if needed too. Although only a few of our readers will benefit from this, any taller photographers or videographers will really benefit from the 170cm maximum height during use as it can help stop those aches in your neck on those longer sessions.
Now, unlike many compeating tripods that offer a great maximum height but skimp when it comes to the low angles, the MT055CXPRO3 also offers an excellent minimum usable height of only 9cm! This really is excellent when you consider how high its maximum height is and if you are involved in macro photography you can really get your d850 up close and personal to whatever you are capturing with ease without having to put your camera body on the ground and still getting the excellent image stabilization from the tripod.
On top of its great maximum and minimum usable height, the tripod also allows you to lock its legs into four fixed positions too. This allows you to pretty much reach any position or angle when also adjusting your central column and tripod head as required. This can be handy in multiple photography niches as it offers you some excellent image stabilization while able to have your Nikon d850 in an irregular position without putting it at risk.
One of our favorite features of the Manfrotto MT055CXPRO3 is the fact that it comes with the Manfrotto easy link connector as standard. This essentially allows you to quickly and easily mount additional camera accessories to your tripod within seconds basically turning it into a mini-portable photography studio. You can attach everything from an external microphone to a field monitor to a lighting unit or camera flash as well as everything in between without issue.
When you take all of these great features into account as well as the level of image stabilization and the build quality the Manfrotto MT055CXPRO3 offers you and your d850, it really is easy to see how it has managed to earn so many excellent, independent reviews from the community since its release onto the market. If you do have some time spare, skimming over those reviews really can offer you a great insight into the performance of the tripod from independent photographers and videographers who use it as their go-to tripod of choice and use it on a regular basis.
User Interface And Control System
As you would expect from a modern tripod from the Manfrotto range, the MT055CXPRO3 has one of the best user interfaces that we have ever seen. It comes with the Manfrotto “one-finger operation” system and in all fairness, we are massive fans of it. Although there are a few things that do require more than one finger to operate on the tripod, many of the features can quickly and easily be operated using one single feature down the central column of the tripod.
Another area that Manfrotto has innovated on is the flip locks on the legs of the tripod. Although they look and operate just like regular flip locks on any other tripod, the MT055CXPRO3 comes with what Manfrotto are calling their “quick power locks” that have the highest tension available at the time of writing to lock your tripod legs in place.
When you have a camera body that costs thousands as the Nikon d850 mounted to your tripod, this offers you peace of mind that once locked, the legs won’t budge until you release their locks. This keeps your d850 safe, stable, and secure even when you have the legs of the tripod placed out in some random positions to get the angle you want.
Another solid part of the interface is the fully rotatable spirit bubble level on the tripod that we absolutely love! Time was that if your camera body or a mounted camera accessory covered the spirit bubble on your tripod you just had to guess if you were level or not. The latest Manfrotto tripods, including the MT055CXPRO3 offer a rotating spirit bubble so if your view is blocked then you can simply rotate it around the top of the tripods central column until you can see it. We know that this is a pretty basic feature but we are big fans of it and it seems that the community are actually using it more often than most people initially thought when the feature was announced.
Build Quality And Design
As you would expect from the Carbon Fiber variant of the MT055CXPRO3 it is extremely lightweight and robust coming in at only 5.5 pounds of weight. That said though, even the Aluminum ally variant of the tripod is pretty lightweight and although it does feel robust and tough, we would definatley say that the Carbon Fiber variant is stronger. This ensures that both versions of the tripod are able to take any bumps or knocks without issue or putting your d850 at risk.
Next up we have the collapsed size of the tripod and in all honesty, we feel that this is the only real weak point of the MT055CXPRO3. It comes in at 61cm when fully collapsed meaning that it is not the smallest tripod on the market but on the flip side of this, the MT055CXPRO3 is not marketed as a travel tripod either. We doubt that this will be much of an issue for most of our readers but we just wanted to make you aware of the relatively large collapsed size of the tripod in case it does present an issue.
A great little feature that Manfrotto has added to the MT055CXPRO3, as well as the majority of their other modern tripods, is a small, padded O-ring below the tripod head mount. We have seen a few people asking what the purpose of the O-ring is and it is there to help protect your camera in the very unlikely situation and the central column lock gives way and causes the central column to collapse under the weight of your camera.
The O-ring basically adds an additional layer of padding to prevent any hard impact, shock, or vibration from making its way to your camera as the O-ring absorbs it all. Now, we just want to stress that the chances of this happening are minimal but it is just nice to know that additional precautions have been taken in the very unlikely event that it actually happens.
Now, depending on the niche you work in, and your location, this may not even be an issue to you but the MT055CXPRO3 does not come with a counterweight hook at the base of its central column. Although we would like to see one added for any second version of the tripod, you are able to use the adjustment knob as a sort of pseudo counterweight hook to hand your backpack or any other form of counterweight off in high winds.
All in all, Manfrotto has done an excellent job when it comes to the design and build quality of the MT055CXPRO3 and it blows the majority of compeating tripods at this price point in the market out the water in our opinion. Although it does have the two minor things that we would change, we feel that all in all it is a great, well put together bit of kit.
That brings our article going over what we feel is the best Manfrotto tripod for Nikon d850 cameras on the market to an end. Like we said back at the start of the article, you could argue that the Manfrotto MT057C3-G is a better option but it is more than double the price of the Manfrotto MT055CXPRO3 at the time of writing without really offering too much for the additional cost.