More than any piece of equipment I use, I am frequently asked about my Kirk Enterprises L-Bracket for my Canon 5D Mark III. L-Brackets are a right angled plate that attaches to your camera body allowing you to easily switch between landscape to portrait orientation with the addition of a vertical quick release plate.
Without a L-bracket I often struggled with portrait orientated shots on a tripod, tilting my ball-head to an extreme angle which would put all the camera weight on the mounting screw often causing the lense to sag from the original orientation. I found this especially frustrating when shooting macro photography or trying to capture panoramic shots.
After some research on L-brackets I decided to go with the Kirk BL-5D3 and could not be happier. There are several adjustable universal L-brackets on the market, but nothing compares to having a one piece bracket that was made to fit your model perfectly (even if you are use a battery grip!) Kirk produces all of their L-brackets from a single lightweight piece of machined 6061-T6 aluminum alloy and fits to the camera body perfectly with still allowing access to the battery and terminals.
Initially I was considered about the size and bulk, but I haven’t removed my L-bracket since the day it was installed. The weight and comfort has not really been affected and even adds some additional protection to your camera. I also found a greater stability to landscape orientated shots with the two-point attachment compared to a traditional quick release plate.
The Kirk L-Brackets are designed to used with arca style quick release clamps which initially was going to be a problem as I was still using Manfrotto 200PL Quick Release Plate on all my setups. However with the Kirk Universal Quick Release Clamp, I was able to retrofit my existing heads with an arca style clamp which I now love. Maybe I will write a quick tutorial on how I converted it a future article.
Kirk L-brackets are available from: