What is the 3 Legged Thing QR11?
The QR11 is a universal L-bracket that’s designed to fit around two sides of a camera, taking the place of a tripod quick release plate. As the bracket has the Arca Swiss compatible mounting on both lengths, it enables the camera to be switched quickly between landscape and portrait orientation.
This is especially useful with a ball head tripod head because it saves you having to adjust and level the head, you just unclamp the camera, rotate and reclamp it.
Making an L-bracket might seem like a simple thing but with the dimensions of cameras varying considerably and the position of key elements such as the strap lugs, battery doors and port covers being very different, it’s not easy to make one that fits a range of cameras.
Some manufacturers like Kirk and Really Right Stuff have made their task a bit easier by producing brackets that are specifically designed to suit a single camera model. While this should ensure a good fit, the cost can come as a bit of a shock. And the chances are that when you upgrade your camera you’ll need to buy another bracket.
3 Legged Thing, on the other hand, opted for a tougher challenge and created a universal bracket. This means that there’s far greater chance of being able to swap the bracket from one camera to another. In addition, with economy of scale helps to keep the price of the QR11 to a fraction of that of some other L-brackets
QR11-L or QR11-FB
The QR11 comes in two sizes, the QR11-L which is designed for most single-grip DSLRs and mirrorless cameras and the QR11-FB that is for double-gripped cameras like the Canon EOS1DX Mark II and Nikon D5, or cameras such as the Fujifilm X-H1 with its battery grip attached (see below).
According to 3 Legged Thing, the QR11-FB fits most twin-grip cameras and there’s a useful table on the company’s website to check the camera compatibility of the QR11-L.
I tested the QR11-L on a variety of cameras including the Canon EOS 5D Mark III, Fujfilm X-T2, Sony A7R III and Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark II and it worked well with each of them. I also used the QR11-FB for a brief spell on the Fujifilm X-H1 with its battery grip – again it was fine.
In some cases, you need to screw the bracket’s bolt a little way into the camera’s tripod bush and then give it a little jiggle to find the optimum seating position before tightening it fully with the supplied multitool.
The port covers can be a little awkward to access, so if you’re planning on connecting a cable, you may want to open them before fully tightening the bracket.
There are a few nice touches that round-off the high-quality look at feel of the QR11. Some rubberised grips on the bottom section cushion your camera nicely for example, while lugs are provided for attaching a camera strap. It also has a two-piece construction and can be disassembled (using the supplied tool) for easier transport.
Naturally, there’s the odd compromise made with using a universal rather than a bespoke L-bracket, but the QR11 does a very good job, easing and speeding the change in shooting orientation when using a camera mounted on an Arca Swiss type tripod head.
The supplied multitool enables the bracket to be fitted snuggly to a range of cameras so that it doesn’t slip about and your camera is held securely on the tripod. The bracket also provides some protection for your camera, fending off those odd bumps that can come along.