Good, but disappointing
Review by: gothcopter, 2008-05-27
I really love Metolius' gear, so I was very excited when I heard about the Master Cam. It seemed like a perfect complement to my TCUs. I bought a #1 as a test, and started carrying it in place of my green Alien.
Whereas the Aliens have a reputation for being well-designed and poorly-manufactured, I suspect the Master Cam will eventually have the reputation of being poorly-designed and well-manufactured. To achieve a narrow overall head width, they made the lobes very thin. With tiny cams, surface area counts... especially if rock quality is less than perfect. I trust my TCUs more than I trust these things.
The other problem for me is stem flexibility. Compared to Aliens, these things might as well be Forged Friends. And I'm not too eager to find out how reusable one would be after taking a big fall onto it in a horizontal placement.
Final verdict: While the Master Cam is a well-built and functional piece of equipment, there are better products out there. I would invest in TCUs and/or Aliens instead.
EDIT: Having now put some more miles on my Master Cam, I feel I should relent a little in my criticism. My little, blue guinea pig has held up rather well so far. I took my first fall on it -- in a shallow, horizontal placement that was pretty much the ideal scenario to damage the cam. The little cables that connect the trigger bar to the trigger assembly were positioned right at the edge of the crack. While the bottom-most cable was slightly crimped during the fall (a 15-footer with about 40 feet of rope out), and the thumb loop is now somewhat elongated, the cam is otherwise unscathed. I still think the thing could have been better designed, but it's holding together nicely so far.