Let’s not mince words here, the M-Plate Pro by Custom SLR is an unbelievably expensive item given it’s essentially a hunk of metal with some holes. I realize that’s not acknowledging the true quality of the product (and it is indeed a quality item), but the $70 price tag attached to this piece of gear is still hard to swallow. This damn thing is more expensive than the BlackRapid RS-7 camera strap attached to it, and that TOO is an expensive piece of gear.
But even with this unbelievably expensive price for a piece of metal, it turns out this item’s usefulness outweighs its price. And let’s face it, when you consider the forces and stresses this product will have to endure, you don’t want it to be made cheaply.
Oh, so you want to know what the M-Plate Pro does? Well, I just assumed if you were reading this review, you already knew. But the quick and dirty explanation is that this tripod plate attaches to the tripod mount on your camera, with the idea being that it never gets removed. From this plate you then attach your various goodies like your proprietary tripod mounting plate and your sling-style camera strap. And it’s the latter that really is the reason a plate like this exists in the first place.
Most sling-style camera straps attach to the tripod mounting plate. When it comes time to use your tripod, you must unscrew the strap’s connection point and then screw it back in when you want to switch back to carrying the camera. The M-Plate Pro allows you to leave both your tripod mounting plate, and your camera strap’s connection point attached at all times. And if your tripod connection is Manfrotto RC2 or Arca-Swiss, the M-Plate Pro works out of the box, no extra tripod mounting plate necessary. But with holes drilled right into the M-Plate Pro, you should be able to use it with most tripod mounting plates without issue.
It was quite annoying to unscrew the BlackRapid “FastenR” every time I wanted to use my tripod. In fact, it was one of the reasons I avoided shooting with tripod altogether. But now the FastenR stays screwed into the M-Plate Pro full-time, as does my tripod’s mounting plate. I can leave the RS-7 strap attached or I can remove it, my choice. And almost as good as the convenience this product affords, it also moves the mount point for my BlackRapid RS-7 strap forward, creating a better balance between camera and lens. And on top of all that, and if this matters at all to you, this thing looks something fierce attached to the bottom of a DSLR.
So yes, if you couldn’t tell, I highly recommend this item.
I was not paid for this review and I’m not affiliated with Custom SLR.