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Best Camera Backpack

Photographers often spend large amounts of money on cameras, lenses, and laptops to edit photos. However, one of the most important items a photographer can spend money on is a way to make all of their equipment mobile, usually in the form of a backpack.

There are several things a photographer should look for when choosing a backpack. A photographer’s backpack must be equipped with features to not only fit their equipment but also keep them protected from bumps and jostles. It must also be comfortable to wear and easy to store. It should also be versatile and offer protection from the elements. It should also allow for easy access to the equipment in situations where photos need to be taken quickly or quietly. Here are some of the best camera backpacks available on the market.

1. Case Logic SLRC-206 SLR Camera and 15.4-Inch Laptop Backpack

Case Logic is a popular brand of backpacks for electronics and cameras and their reputation for making quality bags shows in the SLRC-206. It offers plenty of utility and space for the camera and all its accessories. The hard EVA base is waterproof and offers the ability to stand the bag upright. It also has straps on the side to strap a portable tripod onto the bag. The bag is also quite lightweight when it is empty, weighing in at a little over 2.5 lbs.

Inside, the SLRC-206 offers enough space for a DSLR camera with an attached lens, any PC laptop up to 16″ and a MacBook Pro up to 17″. The interior lining of the backpack lid is made of memory foam to help protect the LCD screen on the back of the camera. The most interesting feature is the patent-pending hammock system that suspends the camera above the bottom of the case to prevent damage from being bounced around or hitting the bottom of the bag when it is put down.

2. Lowepro Slingshot 202 DSLR Sling Camera Bag

Wearing a DSLR camera backpack full of equipment and accessories can be uncomfortable at times. Lowepro’s unique sling-style backpack design helps relieve some of the discomfort. It also allows for easy access to everything in the backpack without ever taking it off. It features the Hideaway Tripod Mount system that allows for storing a tripod or monopod easily. It’s All-Weather cover protects the bag’s contents from the elements. There are also SlipLock attachment loops that allow the user to attach compatible pouches and other bags.

Inside, the Slingshot can fit DSLR cameras such as the Canon Eios Rebel SL1, Nikon D3200 or the Sony Alpha A5000 with an attached lens easily. It can also fit three to four other lenses, accessories, and some personal items. However, there is not enough space in the Slingshot for a laptop. It is mainly designed to just carry photography equipment.

3. Lowepro Fastpack 250 DSLR Camera Backpack

Lowepro offers many different styles of DSLR camera backpacks other than the Slingshot. The Fastpack offers traditional backpack style with easier accessibility and unique storage options. The outer shell is water resistant and offers plenty of outer pockets for storage including a harness pocket for a cellphone or mp3 player. A mesh side pocket allows for storage of easily accessible items like snacks or water bottles.

Inside, the Fastpack offers a triple compartment storage configuration. There are separate compartments for the camera, accessories, and a laptop. The laptop pocket holds laptops up to around 15″ wide. The DSLR compartment holds a DSLR with an attached lens and has room for two to three other lenses. The camera compartment can be accessed via a side flap that can be opened without taking the backpack off. Built into the side flap is a pocket for storing memory cards. The final compartment can be used for personal items and other accessories.

4. Lowepro Flipside 400 AW Pro DSLR Camera Backpack

For professional photographers, being able to carry around a variety of lenses and accessories is important to make a photoshoot seem dynamic and produce high quality photos without wasting time looking for a lens they may or may not have packed that day. The Flipside is the best camera backpack for the serious photographer, allowing for a massive amount of storage while being comfortable and functional. The padded camera compartment can hold a DSLR with a lens attached along with up to six other lenses, a flash, and even an extra camera body.

On the outside, the Flipside features a hideaway tripod mount and a front storage panel for personal items and other accessories. It also features contoured shoulder straps and a waist belt to help redistribute the weight of the backpack for more comfort. Equipment is accessible via the body-side access and the zippers are silent to allow for access to the camera without scaring away possible wildlife subjects. The Flipside is also equipped with the built-in All-Weather cover to protect all the equipment from the weather.

5. Altura Photo Wanderer Series DSLR Camera and Mirrorless Backpack

The best DSLR backpacks offer a great balance of equipment storage, comfort, duarbility, and accessory storage. The Wanderer by Altura is a great example of that balance. Inside, the Wanderer offers space for up to two camera bodies, up to six lenses, a flash, and accessories. However, depending on your needs the padded inserts can be rearranged or removed to offer customizable storage options. The back flap can hold any laptops or tablets up to 14″ wide as well as things like memory cards and extra batteries.

The construction of the Wanderer keeps the serious, traveling photographer in mind. The padded shoulder pads provide comfort for anyone of any height. The stitching at common stress points are reinforced for long-term durability. The 840D nylon exterior protects the contents from the weather, and the dual zippers connect, allowing for locks to be placed on it for added security. Also, the bag is officially TSA carry-on compatible.

A photographer’s tools are the most important things to them, and if they take the hobby seriously or are a professional, they should invest in a high quality backpack for their equipment. They should take into account how much equipment they want available to them at all times, whether or not they need a way to carry a tripod or monopod around easily, and how durable they want the bag to be depending on where they are going for a shoot. They should also think about the types of shoots they are doing, such as shooting a planned shoot with a human or a spontaneous shoot with local wildlife. And for those interested in looking good and being comfortable, they should choose a backpack that fits their style and offers comfort that fits their physical abilities and needs. A photographer’s talent is more than just how expensive their equipment is, but in order to express that talent they need a way to protect and transport their tools and help them be prepared to take the best photos at a moment’s notice. A great backpack can give them all of that.

Three Inventive Ways to Use the Gorillapod Tripod

The Gorillapod Tripod is a versatile tool that any amateur or professional photographer or filmmaker should include in their kit. The

JOBY GorillaPod SLR Zoom.

tripod is lightweight, flexible, and with a variety of different options available can offer a number of creative possibilities.
Here are a few inventive ways that photographers and filmmakers can use the Gorillapod Tripod:

1. Exciting Nature Shots:

Outdoor photography can present a number of challenges when trying to find the perfect shot. The flexibility of the Gorillapod Tripod offers users the opportunity to take interesting and exciting pictures of everything from deer grazing in a field to birds playfully flitting around a birdfeeder.

Capturing the right angle for a picture close to the ground, like a stream, can be complicated. Keeping hands steady while filming something can cause strain that creates unwanted shaking. The legs of the tripod can be placed in several stable positions to make such pictures possible. For users who want a higher view, the rubber grips around the legs allow the tripod to be wrapped around generally challenging objects like tree branches. A patient photographer may be rewarded with an intimate view of a variety of wildlife.

2. Unusual Angled Shots:

For the ambitious, the Gorillapod Tripod can also be used for unusual or complicated angles. Classic overhead shots that feel as if the audience is floating over a scene can be tough to execute. The tripod legs can be wrapped securely around a stable object like an overhead fan to give audiences that ethereal feeling of hovering above a scene.

For an unorthodox application, the tripod can be positioned on to something like a rail. These angles can be used to capture the crowds of people descending down the stairs, perfect for B-roll referencing the activity of a professional environment.

3. Dynamic Perspective Shots:

The Gorillapod Tripod is not limited to stationary shots. The tripod also has several dynamic applications that empower users with the ability to create thrilling footage. The legs of the tripod can be shaped into different positions that give users a number of options for their shots. A tripod leg curled over the top of a camera in the shape of a handle gives photographers a way to create low shots that travel along the floor. Outer legs bent into handles can give users enough stability to create sweeping or tracking shots.

For fun, the tripod can be affixed to any number of unusual, mobile surfaces, from a pet dog to an arm. A curious pet owner can clamp the camera to a dog collar and see what kind of trouble their pet gets into. Strapped to an arm, the tripod offers yet another dynamic angle from which a scene can be filmed.

For the filmmaker or photographer looking to diversify their portfolio, the Gorillapod Tripod can be a valuable tool with limitless possibilities that allows them to create dynamic, unusual, and creative shots.

All About Flexible Camera Tripods and How to Choose the Right One

As the popular saying goes, “a picture is worth a thousand words.” Ever since the very first (almost) successful photograph was taken back in 1816, cameras and photography have grown increasingly popular as time passes. Now, we have whole museums, galleries, and showings dedicated to the art of photography, and plenty of people are even pursuing degrees and extensive, permanent careers in the field. Anyone with an eye for piecing together attractive visuals could potentially pick up a camera and capture tellings of beautiful stories.

From a Sony to a Nikon, Canon, Fujifilm, Olympus, Panasonic, or even a GoPro, there are plenty of options available on the market for cameras able to take high-quality, stunning photographs when in the hands of a talented photographer. However, even the best or most expensive of cameras couldn’t overcome photography’s worst enemy: the shake. The shake is what happens when you hold your camera in unsteady hands or set it on a surface that isn’t stable. This is why every good camera – even the best of them – needs a partner in crime, which is where the flexible camera tripod comes in.

Benefits of Using a Tripod

A tripod is the added tool of perfection that every photographer needs to help capture an image in all of its glory. Without a stable tripod, the photograph is likely to come out blurry, unstable, or not completely leveled. The flexible camera tripod is a three-legged device with an adjustable central column and exchangeable heads to hold the camera depending on whether you are shooting photographs or videos.

Using a tripod brings many benefits to a photographer, some of which may be surprising to someone who has never used one before or who is new to photography. Obviously, tripods prevent blurry or unstable photographs, which is very important, especially to professional photographers. However, they also improve macro shots and allow long exposure photographs to be taken in conditions of low light.

Another benefit of using a tripod can be experienced when taking photographs outside, especially while during rainy or windy weather conditions. Tripods can also help relieve photographers from feeling significant physical strain due to holding heavy cameras with long, obtrusive lenses. These devices are clearly very beneficial to hobbyists and professionals alike; although, it would be especially silly for a professional photographer to forgo the use of a tripod during sessions – unless they prefer selling blurry pictures, of course.

The Composition of a Tripod

Tripods are usually made from one of three different materials: aluminum, carbon fiber, or basalt fiber. Of the three materials, aluminum is typically used in tripods designed for beginners or low-budget photographers to the inexpensive cost while still being incredibly sturdy. However, if a photographer is looking for an optimally portable tripod, a newer one made from carbon fiber would be a better choice. Although they are typically more expensive than tripods made from other materials, carbon fiber tripods are lighter and easier to handle in difficult weather conditions. Basalt fiber, on the other hand, has been often criticized for its unreliability and low durability qualities.

Typically, camera tripods will weigh anywhere between 2.2 pounds and 6.6 pounds, depending on the model and chosen material. Weight should be an important factor to take into account for photographers who plan on traveling frequently, as many flights may have an excess baggage weight allowance in place. Otherwise, it should also be kept in mind that heavier tripods may be more difficult to carry over long distances. With that said, heavier tripods typically provide more stability and resistance to vibration or certain weather conditions.

Tripods usually feature three different height options to choose from: the closed length, minimum height, and maximum height. The closed length describes the length of the tripod when it is completely compacted to match the size of your carrying bag. The minimum height describes the lowest height of the tripod when all legs have been folded out; this height is often used when shooting at floor level or for macro photography. Finally, the maximum height describes the tallest height of the tripod when it has been extended to its fullest potential; using a tripod at its maximum height may introduce some instability due to the fully extended center column.

The head of the tripod is where your camera sits. Many tripods come with already integrated heads; although, these heads often introduce heavy limitations when it comes to customization and upgrading. Tripods like these are best for people who will only be using the device occasionally. Otherwise, it may be better to invest in a tripod that comes with a mounting screw to hook up external heads to so you can plan on upgrading your tripod or camera in the future.

There are two major categories of tripod heads: 3-way pan/tilt heads and ball heads. 3-way pan/tilt heads allow both vertical and horizontal orientation of your camera and are often used for landscape shots, macro photography, or videos. These heads are often very stable due to being equipped with either one or two handles for manual manipulation. Ball heads, on the other hand, allow the camera to be maneuvered on a 360 degree, panoramic rotation. These are often used by wildlife photographies for their wide scope allowance and provided freedom.

How to Choose the Right Tripod for You

There are several things to keep in mind when searching for the perfect tripod. First, a photographer should always consider the weight of his or her camera and possible future upgrades. Someone may want to spend less money on a lighter tripod that could be easier to handle, but this choice would end up being a waste of money if the photographer has a heavier camera that won’t be supported by the tripod.

Fluid Rotation Tripod Ball head
Fluid Rotation Tripod Ball head

Another feature to carefully consider if the tripod head, which is the part of the tripod that the camera attaches to. Typically, tripods are made to accept interchangeable heads; however, photographers should always be sure that the tripod head you purchase is made for your camera. Some heads are only made for particular cameras, so it may be the case that a specific camera is excluded by some. Photographers should also consider what type of photography will most often be taken, as 3-way pan/tilt heads and ball heads lend themselves better to different genres of photography. For example, wildlife or sports photographers may be better prepared with a ball head that allows 360 degrees, panoramic movement.

When all is said and done, it is possible that all of these features may not even apply to some photographers, specifically hobbyists or professionals who choose to use compact cameras! If a photographer does use a compact camera, they may be better off using a mini camera tripod. Mini tripods, like the popular Gorillapod tripod, can be attached to nearly anything and provide freedom of use and optimal stability for compact cameras. In the end, photographers must simply keep in mind their particular cameras, and then the right tripod will come with those specifications.

Awesome and Amazing LED Studio Lights!

We all know how helpful and energy efficient our world has become since we have changed over to LED lights. Well, now imagine how efficient our photography world can be with LED studio lights! For some, this is probably a pretty new concept to absorb. Let’s wrap our heads and minds around this again – LED lights for your photography studio!

Benefits:

Yep, this is something that is starting to really happen! There are many great benefits to having LED lights in the photography world. A big bonus is (of course) is a large amount of savings to the pocketbook! We all know that LED lights cost a bit more on the front-end of the purchase; however, we save TONS of money on the back-end of the purchase when it comes to our monthly electric bills.

LED lights stay cooler than traditional studio lights and use a fraction of the energy that traditional studio lights use. Even though they cost more up front, you won’t need to replace them for many years. Yes, many YEARS to come; that benefit alone is worth its weight in gold!

Something to note is that most LED-based photo studio lighting systems are made for video use, but they can also be used for still photography. Many LED lights offer a lower output of light since video work is often done at close range. There are products that offer a higher wattage output; just do your homework and research before you make any type of purchase. It doesn’t hurt to call the manufacturer and ask before spending your hard-earned money. As you know, it’s always “buyer beware” when you are investing in something new and unfamiliar.

More Key Benefits:

There are other key benefits to having LED studio lights. Here are a few:

* Low heat means little or no cool-down period, so you are on the go faster and able to accomplish more in less time. This is great when you are in a time-crunch!

* These lights usually have a high CRI (Color Rendering Index).

* The room and studio tend to stay cooler so your talent or products stay cooler (very beneficial when you have a long photo/video session).

* Easy adaption to multiple voltage power supplies.

* Virtually maintenance free – 25,000 to 1,000,000 hours of lamp life.

* You can clip gels to them without incinerating them or burning your hands.

* Nearly all LED fixtures are fanless and totally quiet on the set and in the studio.

* Efficient – LED lights convert 80% of their energy into light; the standard tungsten fixture only converts 20% of its energy into light.

* Most of the LED photo studio lights are dimmable and remote controllable manually or via DMX (a common method used to control stage lighting).

As you can see from the list above, there are many great benefits to having LED studio lights. These are just a few of the benefits we found; there are plenty of others.
Again, it’s always best to talk to the manufacturer of these lights before you invest a large amount of money that you are not able to afford, especially if you have a specific and detailed question that is not answered in a general article you may be reading. Research, research, research – we can’t say that word enough!

Choosing the Best Studio Lights For You:

In deciding which lights to purchase, there are several different ways to go about getting them. Of course, buying the lights outright is the easiest path; however, you can also purchase do-it-yourself kits and build the LED studio lighting system yourself. There are many kits available through traditional retail stores or you can go online to Amazon or other specialty websites to purchase your kit. Again, be prepared and do your homework and research before you venture on this path.

From what we have seen, these light kits can cost several hundred dollars, and these days most people don’t have that kind of money to casually throw away. Don’t be afraid to ask questions, look at online forums, and see what others have to say about them. This can be a great option in helping you decide the best way to get the studio lights you want and need.

Deciding What Type of LED Studio Lights Are Best for You:

Also, decide what your personal needs are and how you will be using the studio lights. Are they for still photography, video, people, animals, commercial products, etc. These are all things you need to think about as you make educated decisions on your purchase(s). Will your session be long, short, in a darker room, lighter room, what about the colors you are using in your photo/video session? These are all things to think about before making a change.

Most of the questions you would normally ask yourself using traditional studio lights will be the same questions you will ask yourself when purchasing the LED photography lights. Have a checklist and highlight the main concerns and questions you may have. Checklists are very helpful when it comes to getting a task accomplished.

In Summary:

There are tons of different brands when it comes to purchasing LED lights for your photography and video needs. We are not here to tell you which is best/worst. Again, just decide if you want a low-cost or high-end style. Once you make those decisions, you can decide what brand fits the bill for your specific needs. It may be a good idea to also cost compare on several different websites and once again, make phone calls to stores and ask the questions before making the purchase.

The most important thing to remember when you begin this journey is to have F-U-N! Whenever you start something new and uncertain in your life, the most important thing to keep in mind is that you don’t want to take it too seriously. Just enjoy the process and all that you will learn from it. LED lights have become very popular and will most likely be around for a very long time. Once you have educated yourself, gathered all the necessary information you will need to make an informed decision, just embrace the change and enjoy the ride! Don’t look at it as facing something scary and uncertain that you must do, instead look at it as simply moving forward with the times! Remember, the one thing in life that is always certain is that there is most likely change just up ahead and around the corner. Cheers to LED lights in your photo studio and to a great return on your investment!