Because we cover a lot of news, we often get sent a slough of press releases from companies looking to get their product out to the masses. Today I received a release from Fotopro who announced a new line of colorful tripods. Sound familiar? It should, because they look exactly like MeFoto tripods.
They also have some monopods, and these too appear to have the exact same build as MeFoto, save for a slightly different twist release leg and no compass.
Just look at them side by side. The base build is nearly identical. Sure, the head is slightly different and the legs extend one less length, but you can't deny the uncanny similarity.
I'm all for competition in the market, but man, this isn't even innovative. It seems to me to be just a grab for what is a really good-selling product on the market. I love my MeFoto tripod, and I imagine this one performs pretty similarly.
I wrote an article a year and a half ago discussing how China drastically changed the American photographic lighting industry, and this could yet be another example of that situation. What I do know is that Benro originally made the MeFoto tripods before they were spun-off as their own brand. Benro had this design for a very long time and continue to manufacture only for themselves. So it's safe to say the factory that made MeFoto is not the same one that made these Fotopro tripods. That doesn't mean the design wasn't just taken wholesale though, which appears to be the case.