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Italian Ingenuity Highlighted During Factory Tour
A visit to Manfrotto factory in Italy reveals new products

latest tripod model
Coming full circle, from design through to the production of one of the latest tripod models.
worker assembles a tripod
A worker in the Manfrotto factory assembles a tripod by hand.

--Campese & Feltre, ItalyBogen Imaging recently invited a group of U.S. journalists to travel to Italy, to tour the Manfrotto HQ in Campese, Italy and factory in Feltre, Italy which produces the company's Manfrotto tripods, monopods, stands and accessories; and Gitzo tripods and monopods for the photography industry; as well as the line of Avenger stands and accessories for the cine industry.

Manfrotto describes its brands as "complete imaging support solutions inspired and crafted by Italian creativity." Through each step, from the design stage, drawn freehand and on computer, to the creation of prototype models, and production assembly lines, the tour highlighted the Italian-design and engineering excellence behind the popular brands. It is interesting to note, in this day and age of automated production that much of the assembly of the Manfrotto, Gitzo, and Avenger products are done by hand. In fact, each Gitzo tripod and monopod—which are often prized possessions to the photographers who use them—are individually hand inspected before being packaged and shipped to retailers.

Gitzo's range of tripods and monopods include those made of basalt, carbon fiber, and Aluminum. Manfrotto's are offered in aluminum, carbon fiber, magnesium and Adapto—a technopolymer that Manfrotto had specially designed for use in its high-end pro imaging equipment.

Product Additions

New products added to the lines this year that were shown included: Gitzo tripods in a range of sizes from compact (those with a max. height under 4'3", to those with a max. height of 6'6" or above); the Avenger Crosspole, for use when you can't hang lights from the ceiling, or use stands on the set or location; the Avenger Look Out Stand, that lets photographers shoot from extremely high perspectives, with cameras capturing images via remote control. New Manfrotto products include an expansion to the company's X range, with the new 055X family of aluminum tripods. These include models such as the 055XPROB model which uses the company's patented horizontal center column that easily swings to the vertical. The company has also redesigned the popular 190 tripod family, which includes the 190XPROB, also featuring the patented horizontal center column, and the 190XB.

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