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Review: Fotopro C5i Camera Tripod Monopod Kit with FPH-52Q Ball Head



Overview : The C5i range are a beautifully designed Aluminium-magnesium tripod which has all the functions required for a professional tripod with the addition of a built in monopod. Using an advanced anodic oxidation process these colorful tripods are wear and scratch resistant and have a sleek smooth finish. The reverse folded function enables this to be of a compact size and the construction using Fotopro advanced manufacturing technology creates a very durable and stable tripod. Using an ergonomic G-Lock design, leg locks only need a ¼ turn to lock or loosen the leg sections. The molded rubber locks are easy to handle even when wearing gloves. The 2 sectioned center column can easily be reversed which is ideal for low level use and contains an attachment to hang additional weight. The C5i comes complete with a color matched FPH-52Q ball, together with a free high quality case.

Features :
  • Light Weight: The C5i aluminium-magnesium tripod weighs 3.7 pounds.
  • Compact Size: Great for Traveling as it features a reversible design, which makes the tripod shorter, portable and easy to carry.
  • Versatile: 2-in-1 Tripod / Monopod
  • Monopod: The tripod leg can easily be removed and transformed into a monopod.
  • Ergonomic: The ergonomic G-Lock design allows for a quick and simple ¼ turn to lock or loosen the leg sections.
  • Arca Swiss: The C5i comes complete with a Arca Swiss compatible FPH-52Q ball.
  • Weight: 3.7 pounds
  • Capacity: 17.6 lbs.
  • Max height: 61.8 in.
  • Min height: 9.4 in.
  • Folded length: 16.9 in.

Quality/Usability : I've gone through many tripods. I've been switching and swapping between a few tripods both for personal use and to help our readers know what is currently available and what is new. I have a Manfrotto 055XPROB that I use and love since I'm able to turn the center post horizontal. This is great for product shots, reviews and videos but its a bit on the heavy side and big if you're traveling.

I've been looking for a quality tripod that is light in weight and small enough to travel with. Our good friends over at Custom SLR partnered with Fotopro to bring their products to the USA. Custom SLR makes awesome camera accessory products and we reviewed quite a few of them and have nothing but praise. So with Custom SLR partnering with Fotopro, I trust their judgement and support in the products. So why not give it a try?


The Fotopro C5i line comes in five colors: Titanium, Orange, Red, Blue, Green. I opted to go with the Red as it reminds me of the Canon Red and matches my L lenses. Plus, I wanted something a little different and something that would stand out. The C5i includes a ball head, carry case, instruction manual, hook that attaches to bottom of center post for counterweight, tools, quick release plate and monopod pouch.


When it comes to travel tripods, the legs are folded back. This allows it to give it that small portable form factor. Fotopro does have a line of travel tripods that are even smaller. When folded, its 16.9 inches and weighs only 3.7 lbs.


The images above shows the C5i at different heights. First image shows the legs spread out from the folded position. Second image shows the legs full extended. Third image shows the center column at its lowest point and fourth image shows tripod at the lowest it can get with the center column removed.


What's great about the C5i is that it comes with a color matching FPH-52Q Arca-Swiss ball head and a quick release plate. You don't have to go out and spend extra money. It's pretty much unpack, mount, setup and you're ready to use it. There's nothing different about the ball head from others on the market. Small knob on the side of ball head adjusts tension for panning. Bigger knob on the side of ball head adjusts tension for ball head. The knob on the ball head mount has a bubble leveler.

If you already have a Arca-Swiss compatible quick release plate, you don't have to use the one that is included. I've used the ball head with Custom SLR M-Plate, Peak Design PROplates and Hejnar Photo plates and they all work perfectly fine.


Each tripod leg has a leg angle locking mechanism settings. This locks the tripod legs when extended further out. Each tripod leg also has a feature called G-Lock which is a rubber twist-lock. The G-Lock is what locks the tripod legs in place and from extending. A simple 1/4 turn and you can extend the tripod legs. 1/4 turn the other way locks the tripod legs.


Another great feature about the C5i is that one of the legs can be converted into a monopod. To set up one of the legs as a monopod, you'll know which one is the tripod based on what is seen. The one with the monopod leg has a padded cover that has the Fotopro name on it and the top of the tripod leg, it has a twist lock underneath the leg angle lock. Simply twist the lock on the monopod leg to loosen it and twist the leg itself. This will allow you to remove the monopod leg. The center column consists of two pieces and you'll have to separate them by unscrewing them. Once the top is separated from the bottom half, slide the bottom half down from the tripod unit and merge the center column back together. All that is left is merging the center column with the tripod leg.

As mentioned in the beginning of the review, it comes with a monopod pouch. To use it, simply attach the D-ring on the pouch to the belt loop of your pants and place the monopod foot into the pouch. This provides support and stability.

The video below is a quick setup and overview of the Fotopro C5i tripod.


Conclusion : Overall, the Fotopro C5i Camera Tripod Monopod Kit with FPH-52Q Ball Head is a great travel tripod. It's lightweight and has a small form factor and has everything you need right out of the box. If you want something smaller, Fotopro offers the C4i which weighs under 3 lbs. They also have carbon fiber tripods but it will cost you more.




Manufacturer: Fotopro
Site: Buy from Amazon
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