Sachtler refreshes fluid head lineup with new Ace Mark II version

Apr 3, 2024

John Aldred

John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.

Sachtler refreshes fluid head lineup with new Ace Mark II version

Apr 3, 2024

John Aldred

John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.

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Sachtler Ace MkII

Sachtler has refreshed its fluid video head lineup with the new Ace M Mk II and Ace XL Mk II fluid video tripod heads (buy here). The Ace XL Mk II is available on its own or in a range of kits that also include tripod legs. The Ace M Mk II is only available in kits.

The Ace M Mk II has a load capacity of 4kg (8.8lb), while the Ace XL Mk II has a load capacity of 8kg (17.6lb). Both heads include Sachtler’s smooth drag system and multi-step counterbalance. And they should handle just about anything you can throw at them.

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Sachtler Ace M/XL Mk II

Not much seems to have changed on paper with the new Ace Mk II heads over their Mk I predecessors – which were already extremely good. The Ace lineup is their lightweight range, they’re very different beasts to Sachtler’s heavy-duty Cine Series heads.

But despite being smaller and lighter, they’re extremely tough and durable. I mean, we drowned one in the Dead Sea once, and it came out completely unscathed. In fact, we were so impressed that we gave one away to a lucky individual.

They fit onto video tripods with a 75mm bowl. The Ace XL Mk II can be purchased separately, so you can just pop it onto tripod legs you already own. The Ace M Mk II, on the other hand, only comes in kits that also include a set of legs.

Sachtler Ace MkII

The Ace XL Mk II offers 9 steps of counterbalance (one more than the original Ace XL – buy here) and 3 steps of pan/tilt drag adjustment. The tripod plate has 4.1″ of sliding range, to let you more easily balance your camera rig on top, with a -75° to +90° tilt movement range.

The Ace M Mk II has a smaller 5-step counterbalance adjustment (same as the original Ace M – buy here) and the same three steps of pan/tilt drag adjustment. It has the same 4.1″ sliding range on the tripod plate for balancing and the same -75° to +90° tilt range as the XL.

Sachtler Ace M/XL Mk II Specs

Ace M Mk IIAce XL Mk II
Bowl size75mm75mm
Payload0-4kg0-8kg
Counterbalance Steps9+05+0
Pan and Tilt drag3 Steps3 Steps
Tilt Range+90° to -75°+90° to -75°
Sliding Plate Range4.1″4.1″

Price and Availability

The Sachtler XL Mk II fluid head is available in a variety of options, along with a few extra accessories. Some have already started to ship, while others should start appearing in the coming weeks. The Sachtler Mk II doesn’t appear to be available quite yet, but we’ll update this post when we see it.

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John Aldred

John Aldred

John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.

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