(news & commentary)
When the press release came across my desk this morning, I stared at it for a long, long while. Could it actually be? Did a Japanese camera manufacturer finally acknowledge that Arca-style plates are commonly used by high-end enthusiasts and pros?
The press release is for the Fujifilm MHG-XPRO and MHG-XE hand grips. Both are a bottom plate with integrated hand grip that feature five photographer friendly things:
- An enhanced right hand grip
- Additional clearance from the camera body for lenses with larger diameters
- Access to the battery and card without removing the grip
- Realigns the camera's offset tripod socket with a lens-centered one on the grip
- A 38mm-wide quick release dovetail plate that looks to be Arca friendly
Congratulations, Fujifilm. You seem to be the first Japanese camera maker that actually understands what we might be doing with our cameras. Of course, why these things are optional is still a mystery. Shouldn't a camera have a usable grip, shouldn't the tripod socket already be aligned, and why not just engineer the base plate to be Arca-friendly? Still, this is an encouraging development, though one that Really Right Stuff and Kirk Enterprises probably hope doesn't catch on.