Today I would like to show you one of my most used and most favorite type of accessories which is the L-bracket. We will take a look at two L-brackets made by SmallRig. The first one is for Panasonic GH5 or GH5S and the second one is for Sony A6500.
One of the reasons why like the L-brackets so much, is that it they have many functions. First of all, it improves the handling of your camera by extending the grip and allowing you to comfortably fit all fingers on grip. This is especially important on Sony A6500 or A6300, if you use it with large adapted lens Sigma 18-35mm F1.8. It makes a huge difference in terms of the handling, so I would say that for this combination, L-Bracket or baseplate is almost a must have.
The second function is integrated Arca swiss plate. This means that you don’t need to add anything else to mount your camera on Arca compatible mount. The plate is also quite long, so you have a lot of flexibility. If you use different plate system, there are still ¼ inch and 3/8 of inch screws on the bottom part.
The third function is the L-bracket itself. It enables you to mount the camera on tripod in portrait mode without rotating the ballhead.
Function number four is the possibility to use the quarter inch mounts on the L-bracket, for example to attach handle, like my favorite handle reference 2093, which allows much better control of the camera, especially with that extended grip. You can also use it for attaching HDMI lock or clod shoe. SmallRig also makes clod shoe 1593 which will be especially suitable.
One more function is the loop for mounting a regular strap or hand strap. It is actually my favorite place for mounting a Peak Design anchor, especially if I have heavy lens attached.
L-Bracket reference 2179 is very well made, just like all other SmallRig products that I have tested so far. The machining is extremely precise, the coating looks great and it is very durable. The grip part is well shaped, the fitment is perfect. I especially like is that there is a hexagonal wrench stored inside of the L-bracket and it can be used to tighten the screw that attaches the plate to the camera, so I don’t need to carry any additional tools.
This wrench is also used to adjust the gap between the camera and the vertical plate, which can be moved by 28mm. The battery compartment can also be accessed while the plate is attached. You can also detach the vertical plate if you only want to use base plate. The vertical plates blocks the rotation of the screen, there is just no way to prevent that. You can still tilt the display up or down.
The l-bracket kit 2074 for Sony A6500 is a bit simpler, the build quality is the same, so it very good, the fitment is perfect here as well. The vertical plate cannot be moved on this plate, it can just be removed and there is also no wrench inside of this L-bracket. Otherwise, it is a similar construction. It also comes with hardwood grip extension. Personally, I use it without this extension most of the time, weather you want to use it or not is up to you. A6500 is a small camera, so the improvement in the handling is probably the biggest benefit of this L-bracket.
I also use this L-bracket with SmallRig quick release plate 2143. It is also very well made, it has plenty of ¼ inch and 3/8 of inch threads on the bottom for attaching it on whatever you want to. It works with all kinds of Arca plates regardless of the width, thanks to the adjustment screw.
Overall, I really like using these brackets because of their functionality and practicality. These SmallRig L-brackets are very well made, so I generally do recommend these brackets. Bracket for Sony A7 mark III is available as well, it is very similar to this GH5 bracket. L-bracket for G9 with a bit different style is now also available.