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How do you carry your camera?

Onyx

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A DSLR plus just about any decent lens can add up to quite a weight, as well as being bulky, so i'm just wondering how you all cope with simply carrying the weight/bulk as you go about shooting whatever it is that you shoot.

So - do you stick to the strap provided in the box when you bought your camera and hang it round your neck, or do you have some other (more comfortable) way of lugging around your pride and joy.

As a woman of advancing years, I'm finding that having a weight bearing on the back of my neck for any length of time is causing me some lower back discomfort. I have tried Optek straps with neoprene inserts, which are more comfortable, and I have recently discovered Black Rapid shoulder straps - which are a great help with my heavier gear (a 5DIII plus a 70-200 f2.8 zoom - quite a weight!! :( ) but don't seem to have been designed for ladies!!!!. But has anyone got any other recommendations, ideas or suggestions (apart from swapping my beloved Canon gear for something lighter, which isn't happening any time soon). Thanks all.
 

DonS

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I have tried Optek straps with neoprene inserts, which are more comfortable, and I have recently discovered Black Rapid shoulder straps - which are a great help with my heavier gear (a 5DIII plus a 70-200 f2.8 zoom - quite a weight!! :( ) but don't seem to have been designed for ladies!!!!.
Black Rapid used to make the RS-W1, but they seemed to have discontinued it. They now have this one: http://www.blackrapid.com/Nicole-Elliott-Strap-by-BLACKRAPID
 

SeanNeedham

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The neck isn't designed for camera straps, and what I picked up was one day I was watching my sister with a handbag with a strap and thought "That's much more logical".

My usual method is to put the camera strap over my right shoulder with the lens facing outwards then I'll twist it a couple of times in a counter clockwise direction so the lens is resting against the small of my back (depends where I'm working as well, I'll have a lanyard on a belt clip attached to the camera as well). That I find is perhaps the most comfortable method (for me) and with the camera falling in to a position that is just by the right hand it doesn't take long pulling up to the eye and is fairly out the way when I'm not needing it.
 

Snips

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Just a neck strap for up to around 6 hours. DSLR and 70-200mm f2.8 ... it’s quite a weight isn’t it?! My neck muscles are pretty strong now but I sometimes struggle turning my head. Never thought that the camera might be causing this :swoon:
 

kayak

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I never carry a full bag of equipment, just take what I think I'll need. I have a padded neck strap for my camera, which is a God-send. I usually have just one extra lens in my shoulder bag.
 

Phill104

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I've had a couple of Black Rapid straps over the years. While the strap is sound, the part that has worn out on both had been the Karabiner. I was amazed to see that wear through in a couple of places, to the point that if I hadn't noticed the camera gear would have hit the floor.

Since then I have been using the Peak Design shoulder straps. The camera doesn't swing around all over the place with these as there are two attachment points. I was at first a little worried about dangling my kit from the seemingly thin anchor points, but after a long time of dangling my 100-400II of them and seeing no signs of wear I am quite impressed. They have wear indicators on the rope with three layers. So far I have not worn out the first layer on any of them. Considering how much I get out that is quite impressive.
 

SeanNeedham

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Just a neck strap for up to around 6 hours. DSLR and 70-200mm f2.8 ... it’s quite a weight isn’t it?! My neck muscles are pretty strong now but I sometimes struggle turning my head. Never thought that the camera might be causing this :swoon:
Can cause a hell of a lot of damage to the disks or the motion between the cervicals. Just had a bit of measurement with a stock Nikon strap (something like a mirrorless may have a narrower strap, but relatively not much lighter than an SLR depending on body and lens) and that on my neck would have the most part of the weight over an area of about 7.5 square centimetres (right on the spinal ridge), so assuming the weight of the camera/lens is 4.5kg (a full frame beast, with a longish fast lens, grip and maybe a flash this could be an underestimate by some), the pressure loading would be in the region of half a kilo per square centimetre; or to put it in to conceptual value it'd be like wandering around balancing a pint of beer on the tip of your finger for 6 hours... Before any impact stresses.
 

kayak

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I always support the camera when it's round my neck. Always have one hand to ease the weight. Plus, that stops it from swinging about when I walk.
 
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Jannyfox

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As another lady, wrong side of 60 and a whole 5' 1" (nearly) tall................................
I had a Black Rapid sling for my Canon plus Sigma 150-600C and found it a bit cumbersome, quite apart from having to rig my own attachment for a second anchor point. I stopped using it when the potential problem with the karibiner was made known and replaced it with an OpTech utility strap/sling. It was cheaper, fits a lot better and feels a lot lighter. I've since bought more bits, to which are attached a selection of screw in anchors and Peak Design QR attachments. Depending on what lens is on the camera I can attach to the camera strap bars, tripod bushes on camera or lens foot, the strap bar on the Siggy lens foot or any combination. I don't know if your lens has a foot but if it has it's worth attaching to camera and lens as it takes the lens weight off the mount and sits better. If the lens doesn't have a foot I believe you can get straps to go round the lens.
In my hundreds of years of SLR/DSLR ownership I've never used a neck strap round my neck. In the days of my SLR when you used to get the narrow leather straps I wound it round my wrist, now I use a proper wrist strap (Cordweaver - love them). That's when I'm carrying the camera and one of the shorter lenses in a rucksack and just getting it out when I need to.
 

paulmag

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over the shoulder only round the neck when changing lens etc
 

Onyx

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As another lady, wrong side of 60 and a whole 5' 1" (nearly) tall................................
I had a Black Rapid sling for my Canon plus Sigma 150-600C and found it a bit cumbersome, quite apart from having to rig my own attachment for a second anchor point. I stopped using it when the potential problem with the karibiner was made known and replaced it with an OpTech utility strap/sling. It was cheaper, fits a lot better and feels a lot lighter. I've since bought more bits, to which are attached a selection of screw in anchors and Peak Design QR attachments. Depending on what lens is on the camera I can attach to the camera strap bars, tripod bushes on camera or lens foot, the strap bar on the Siggy lens foot or any combination. I don't know if your lens has a foot but if it has it's worth attaching to camera and lens as it takes the lens weight off the mount and sits better. If the lens doesn't have a foot I believe you can get straps to go round the lens.
In my hundreds of years of SLR/DSLR ownership I've never used a neck strap round my neck. In the days of my SLR when you used to get the narrow leather straps I wound it round my wrist, now I use a proper wrist strap (Cordweaver - love them). That's when I'm carrying the camera and one of the shorter lenses in a rucksack and just getting it out when I need to.
Ouch. That’s a pretty convincing argument to do away with neck straps and find a better way. Will look up the Cordweaver straps.
 

Ozzie_Traveller

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.... My usual method is to put the camera strap over my right shoulder with the lens facing outwards then I'll twist it a couple of times in a counter clockwise direction so the lens is resting against [my body] .... That I find is perhaps the most comfortable method (for me) and with the camera falling in to a position that is just by the right hand it doesn't take long pulling up to the eye and is fairly out the way when I'm not needing it.
+1 Downunder
Phil
 

kayak

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I've used a padded neck strap for quite some time now and never had a problem with it. It's just a fitted padded sleeve that covers the original section of strap around the neck. The Nikon strap that's underneath it was hot and sweaty. It irritated me when it stuck to my neck in the summer.
 

MikeB

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I only have the strap around my neck when changing lenses as it gives me better control of the camera body. I carry it like a handbag with the strap over my shoulder. I also ditched the manufacturer's camera strap for one that is padded, adjustable, and has greater friction so it less likely to slip off my shoulder.

There are some nice, light sling bags available that may work well for you. Look for one with heavily padded shoulder strap. Taking the weight off the shoulders and neck entirely is possible with camera gear belts and vests (ThinkTank belt, Lowepro belt, Tamrac, Spider holster, Porta Brace Hip Pack). The Spider holster looks like it should work well for you - not tried it myself.

I have the Lowepro ProTactic utility belt plus lens pouches. It fully succeeds in getting all of the weight off the shoulders but it is cumbersome. Easy and less tiring to carry the gear but not as convenient as one would think.

When walking around with a full size DSLR, one telephoto zoom and one midrange zoom I use Lowepro's Toploader Pro 75 AW II Holster Bag for DSLR and attach a lens case to that for the midrange lens. It uses an across the body strap. Access to the camera and lens is straight forward.
 

Onyx

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Thanks to everyone for the great suggestions. I have some googling to do :) then I can feel a spot of shopping happening:banana:

I also came across this article too, and quite like the leather ones. Worth a second look for sure. Some of them are quite pricey, but not as expensive as dropping my gear onto a hard floor ........ !!
 

al1967

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Tried a few different straps, ended up switching to Peak Design straps and accessories.
PD Slide Lite for a larger camera with larger lenses, PD Leash for a smaller camera with small primes, both usually worn cross-shoulder.
PD Capture clip attached to a backpack strap, or a camera bag (usually a PD 5l sling), when I don't want to carry my camera on a strap, or when shoot 2 cameras. Also have 2 Cuff wrist straps.
PD products aren't cheap, but well made and comfortable. For a larger camera with a heavy lens you might need a wider PD Slide strap.

 

Mountainmamma

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Most of the time I will carry my camera like a crossbody bag. With the strap over my shoulder and across my body and the camera hanging just in front of my arm or just behind my arm. It really makes carrying my camera more comfortable but still easy to grab fast when the need arises.
 

Squire Robert

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I found the Optechusa utility strap very good at taking the strain of my full frame Canon and 70-200 lens off my neck. The clip system they employ is very secure and allows flexibility if using their back pack connectors for using the camera with a rucksack.
 

imagesBV

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For an all day event I use the Optech USA foam shoulder strap...also have the wrist version......but normally I use a cordweaver around my wrist with a small domke bag 5XB (I think) with second lens and spares...or Lowepro Fastpack 200 with 4 lenses and flash and tripod attached
 

rebel06

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I normally carry my camera in a canvas shoulder bag (with no neck strap on), use it , take photo and back in bag.. If I need to have it out for some time or need it out while waiting for something to happen (like on the loop) or if I'm afraid of dropping it (again..lol) then I use my Joby Ultrafit sling strap.

Paul
 

DonS

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Is this not what assistants are for? ;)
 

Jannyfox

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Is this not what assistants are for? ;)
Yes, but minimum wage and all that............can't afford one. You're not allowed to have slaves these days :D
 

SeanNeedham

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Is this not what assistants are for? ;)
Everyone wants to be the assistant photographer until they learn that they are actually assisting not photographing!
 

tenchy

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Usually in the rucksack, from the car to wherever I am being disappointed, then back to the car still in the rucksack, then home.
 

Onyx

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Usually in the rucksack, from the car to wherever I am being disappointed, then back to the car still in the rucksack, then home.
It seems I’m not the only one who sometimes takes my camera for a walk but never gets it out. :(
 
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