Have you heard about camera L brackets? If you are a beginner in photography, then the chances are quite less. Don’t worry; I will be going through camera L bracket in detail through this article. It will help you to decide whether you need one or not?
What is a Camera L Bracket?
L bracket is a camera accessory that connects your camera to the tripod, which is capable of mounting the camera in two orientations, portrait and landscape, in the same tripod axis.
Why do you need a Camera L Bracket?
Now, you know, what an L bracket is capable of doing. So, let us see, why you need a camera L bracket?
1. Quick Set Up and Time Saving
If you are using a tripod for photography and you want to change your camera orientation from landscape (default orientation) to portrait. What will you do? Unfortunately, you don’t have a tripod mounting screw connection in the portrait orientation of the camera.
So, you need to make use of the tripod head. It is not possible to do this in all types of tripod heads. You can do it with a ball head. But this will take some time. It can take up to 30 seconds.
If you had used an L bracket in this situation, then you can easily make the set up in no time. You need to pull out the connection of the tripod head from quick release plate/ Arca Swiss plate and attach it in the other orientation, where a similar quick release plate/ Arca Swiss is connected.
Thus, you can save a considerable amount of time.
2. For a Better Camera Balance
If you don’t use an L bracket, then you need to tilt and adjust your ball head to get the portrait orientation. So, the camera has to sit on a different axis of tripod rather than the regular stable one. It can also result in the unreliable operation of the tripod had since you are putting an extra load in a different axis.
It can result in camera shake if you are going to press the trigger in camera. Even if you use a remote trigger, shake can occur in windy conditions. An L Bracket make sure that the camera always stays in the normal tripod axis, making it better balanced.
3. For Perfect Level images
When you switch from Landscape orientation to portrait, then you need to level your camera if you are not using an L bracket. It can be time-consuming.
You can either make use of a spirit bubble or the in-camera accelerometer to level the camera. This activity can consume a good amount of time too.
If you use an L Bracket, then you need a simple switch to make this change. Thus, you can get a levelled portrait orientation, provided the landscape orientation was in perfect level.
Who should use L Bracket?
L Bracket won’t be suited for all types of photographers. Let us see, which all kinds of photographers can make use of this.
If you are a Landscape photographer, then you will have to compose your shots in both the orientation. So, it would be useful and time saving to use one.
If you are a Wildlife photographer using a high-end telephoto lens, then you don’t need one. Such lenses come with a tripod collar mount, and it is this part which gets connected to the tripod release plate/ Arca Swiss plate and not the bottom of the camera body.
An Architecture photographer may find it useful as it helps to get levelled shots easily, in both the orientations.
There would be a knob to loosen or tighten this collar. You can make use of it to change the photo orientation. When you try to rotate the lens to switch the orientation, you will get a click sound as feedback, indicating that the camera has turned to the other orientation.
For Portrait photographers, who use a tripod, it can be useful.
Disadvantages of a Camera L Bracket
Now, we know the advantages of using an L bracket. So, let us look out the disadvantages of using one.
1. Difficult to Access the Battery compartment
Once you fix the bracket to your camera body, then most of them make it difficult to access the camera battery compartment (located at the bottom of the DSLR camera). So, you need to ensure that you have placed a fully charged to the camera.
Some L bracket models come with a shortened size, which makes the battery compartment accessible. So, please look for this if you are buying one.
2. Limited Access to Camera Ports
If you are planning to use a Cable release to trigger your shots then using a bracket won’t be a good solution. Otherwise, you need to go with a wireless trigger, where the receiver part sits on the hot shoe.
Few L brackets come with a hollow cutting inside the bracket, that allows the user to access the ports when the camera is in landscape orientation. But, you won’t be able to access it, once you switch to portrait orientation since the port side becomes the mounting side.
3. Time to connect the L Bracket
A major drawback of an L bracket is the time consumed to attach it to the camera body. Whenever you want to charge the camera battery or connect the camera to computer directly for downloading or viewing images, you need to remove it. It can be time-consuming.
While connecting, you should ensure that you have attached it tightly and securely to the camera.
So, now you know what does an L bracket do. If you find it useful for the type of photography you are doing, then you should consider investing in one.