review: Manfrotto 1004BAC light-stands
You’d think that light-stands are light-stands. They hold up studio lights or speedlights and any kind of light modifier. But what sets light-stands apart from each other, are the other features – such as portability and ease of use.
I mostly use the Manfrotto 1051BAC / 1052BAC and 1004BAC light-stands. My review of the Manfrotto light-stands explains this. What I like most about them, is that they are stackable. They clip together in quite a compact set of light-stands. Easier to carry with one hand. The clipping-together feature also means they don’t rattle as much as other pieces of metal gear banging against each other in the back of your car.
But there’s another feature of the tall Manfrotto 1004BAC (affiliate), that I never quite was aware of. That there’s a certain poking-ability with them. You can extend it and poke stuff with it. Or in this case, lift the bride’s veil out of a tree.
At a wedding this weekend, as the bride and groom were posing outside on the steps of the church, a gust of wind grabbed the veil and wafted it away. It lodged in a tree. The limo drivers were onto it immediately, looking for something to dislodge the veil – and there was my light-stand. Look at the reach! And there was still one section to go. They hadn’t even gotten to the limit of that beast!
So there it is. These light-stands are awesome. They are fairly light-weight, they are very tall, and they stack together – and you can poke and dislodge stuff with it. Neat.
Detail of three light-stands clipped together, and a detail image showing one just uncoupled from the others. The other clip is in the foot section.
Order these awesome lightstands here
- the compact: Manfrotto 1051BAC
- the medium-sized Manfrotto 1052BAC
- the taller, heavier tall: Manfrotto 1004BAC
7 Comments, Add Your Own
1Eddie Wilson says
I’m looking to pick up a Manfrotto boom arm you recommended but your link was to a kit and I’d much rather have one of these nice stackable stands. Have you used the arm and decent lights with any of these stands? I assume the 1004BAC since its the strongest.
2Neil vN says
I use a different light-stand with the boom arm. I would guess the limiting factor here would be the total weight you intend to put on the 1004BAC.
Add up the weight of the boom arm, and a rough guess as to what other items you are going to load on, including a balancing weight or sandbag.
3Jon Lloyd says
I highly recommend ‘quality’ light stands. I have a couple of kit stands that came with OK speedlite softboxes… they are… ahem… crap, to be honest! On a practice shoot on the weekend a grub-screw fell out rendering one of them virtually useless as the upper section just spun round in the wind. Disaster at a wedding!
I have other Manfrotto kit – and these look awesome.
The Manfrotto 1004BAC extends to about 12 feet tall, so it is quite long.
Overall, the build quality on these particular Manfrotto stands are very good. The only possible weak point is the red locking knob, as it doesn’t feel as durable as the rest of the stand. I feel that one day I will turn it too hard and have it snap off.
As Neil has always said, buy the best you can afford. Buying cheap stands will end up costing you more in the long run as you either outgrow the stand or the stand falls apart. In both situation, you end up having to buy another stand.
If you do weddings or events or just looking for a high quality light stand, this is the one to get!
When you are going into a venue, you want to make as few trips as possible. On the way in, you want to look as professional as possible. There are others around and they will be watching. If you are fumbling with equipment, they will take note.
I use the Manfrotto 1004BAC and can fit 4 of them stacked into a long Hakuba bag. It looks so much more professional bringing all your stuff in at once with everything neatly stacked in nice looking bags then the other way which is like a rag-bag.
There is no better lightstand on the market then the Manfrotto 1004BAC. Buy the 3-pack.
The problem with these (the one I have) is that the protruding clip loop is exposed to damage if you hapen to drop them after this you can not look anything to the stand. Of course one way to “cure” this is to keep the broken stand as the outermost so you don’t have to clip another stand to it.
7Neil vN says
I have two of the medium ones where they don’t clip in anymore. They fell, and then the latch inside broke off. So not the loop itself, but the recessed latch that hooks into the loop. And I have no idea whether this is repairable.