When they asked me to go to Norway and shoot a video there for an important clothing brand, I immediately thought about what could be the best shooting equipment to take with me.
I had to minimize the gear kit for the travel, besides me there were two more photographers and many suitcases with outfits to be worn and moreover I knew the shooting time was very tight.
We would have moved to different locations in a few days and I could not afford the advantage of having all the equipment I normally use on set.
Knowing the new XPRO monopod, I realized that this was the ideal support for the camera, allowing me to have stability and fluid movements in a lightweight and compact accessory. Many are the improvements comparing with the previous model, which I had already used in other works:
- Section Blocking System has more extensive dimensions and it is easy to lock and unlock even by wearing gloves (and according with frigid temperatures of Norway this has been an important advantage!)
- The fluid head can withstand higher weights and the aside locking system (non-sliding) allows you to hook up a camera with rails and accessories as follow focus or mattebox without having to disassemble anything.
- It has an efficient and quick release system, and the new lower locking system locks the monopod in the upright position, allowing a more fluid and accurate panorama shooting.
I had the opportunity to test the product on hard conditions, snow and heavy rainfall without ever having any problems.
I used it on sloping, uneven and slippery surfaces, in the high snow (with snow at my knees I also used it as a support to get out!), in the middle of the rocks and ice.
I cannot say I treated it so well but the performance has been always perfect.
I moved quickly among locations, I got in and off the car, descending “on the fly” for a quick filming. With a tripod, however lightweight, this would not have been possible.
On the XPRO I set up my camera (a Canon C100 with lens and viewfinder) and this solution has been the right compromise for this type of work: shooting was much more stable than the one I would get with the free-hands use of the camera, also because I could freely move while quickly adjusting shooting height.
I cannot say that a monopod can completely replace a good tripod, but in many cases where practicality and speed are essential, a valid and well-designed support as the Manfrotto XPRO can definitely make the difference!