Camera Straps

Discussion in 'Nikon' started by phil_burt, Dec 8, 2008.

  1. Good Morning,
    I have seen many camera straps on the web, but where we live isn't close to a good camera shop so I can't try ny. Can anyone recommend something to use for someone that has a neck problem? I have 4 ruptured discs in my neck and hanging a camera from it for any lenght of time is very uncomfortable. I can have the regular Nikon Strap on for a few minutes and it is OK, but for walking around no good, so I wind up carrying my camera in my hand. I do have a Lowpro Slingshot back pack case that comes around front to retrieve the camera easilly but that necessitates opening and closing all of the time. Any ideas or those with neck problems what do you use.
    Thank You,
  2. Consider a belt/holster rig (I really like the Think Tank products). You can have the camera nose-down in the holster, ready to shoot, and just tug at one zipper to get to it ... and all of the weight is on your hips, rather than your neck/shoulders.

    If you must have a strap, the OpTech and Upstrap brands are very popular. I use the OpTech straps with a heavily loaded camera, and happily.
  3. I use the Optiflex straps. They have give and are soft. I also carry the camera over one shoulder across my chest. That keeps the camera out of the way and somewhat off my neck. My biggest lens is a 6 pound 500mm f4 which is not terrible to carry.
  4. Bad neck here. Infact I am currently recovering from spinal surgery having 2 discs removed. I'm an old f* with RA and I won't be hanging a strap for at least 6 months if ever.
    I've hauled camera gear through festivals and concerts for 30 years and I switched to a belt (fanny) pack a few years back. I use a LowePro Orion (I think, couldn't find a tag). It will hold a D200, 17-55 f2.8 and an 85 f1.4, barely. I also have holsters or pouches if I need to add gear or carry less.
    Normally I carry the camera in my hand when using it and stuff it when not. The trade off is getting lower back pain after a hours of hauling it instead of worsening the neck situation.
    Don't do things to aggravate the condition! I ended with some nerve damage because it was ignored too long.
  5. Thinktank Photo makes a rig called the Pixel Racing HArness to use with their belts. it has a couple of D rings on the straps that go over your chest. Attach a small caribiner or similar clip to the D rings and clip your camera strap through the caribiners instead of putting it around your neck. That way the camera hans from both shopulders instead of your neck or one shoulder. I've used this system with Thinktank Photo's rotation 360 backpack and it is a great relief to have the camera off of my neck.
  6. Upstrap. It's made with a special nubby rubber pad, and is designed to be carried over a shoulder, not around the neck. I took my D3 to Italy last summer with one, and never had a problem. It stays put, and you don't have to put your shoulder out of joint being sure the strap doesn't fall off. Highly recommended!
    Bill Pearce
  7. I like the Domke straps.
  8. Phil, regardless of the strap, camera around neck will remain uncomfy. I suggest carrying the weight bandolier-style; left arm and head thru strap, strap on right shoulder and camera at left hip.
  9. In the past I've used a similar rig to the one Ellis suggests. If using a belt with pouches or waist pack, you may find that suspenders are handy in distributing weight. I also had a couple of backpacks that had d-rings on the harness to allow for attaching gear. Both these types of set ups allow for attaching to the "harness" as opposed to over the neck. I used the qd snaps from the different neck straps and made short stub straps for the harnesses. It can be awkward if you have to get in and out of the backpack or take it off a lot nd getting the strap lengths "right" takes some trial and error.
    This spreads the weight over the shoulders and shouldn't put much if any on the neck.
  10. Wow, Thanks to all so far for your suggestions. All of them are really good especially seeing many of you have some neck problems also! I made a list and am currently looking at each one in detail. I, in my internet searching came across a strap called Black Rapid Strap, it looks interesting. Has anyone used this strap? I do wonder how one would go about sitting with it attached?
    Thanks again,
  11. I like the R-Strap by Black Rapid:
  12. The thing that puts me off about the Black Rapid is that you have to remove the strap to mount it on a tripod. So that means you have to find some place to putthe camera down with it turned over or worse resting ton front of the lens then remove their attachment device (Which screws in to the camera's tripod socket) and then mount the camera on the tripod and stash the strap somewhere. and when you need to reverse the process to put the Black Rapid back on. I know not everyone thinks a tripod is ever necessary but they are wrong --so while it's a nice idea it is just too much hassle for me. As for a strap itself (not what you are looking for I know) I also like the various UPstrap models.
  13. Having had neck surgery myself (ruptured disc). Here is another vote for the blackrapid strap!!
    I can carry it all day long with a big heavy lens and it is very comfortable! As for the tripod I do not use the attachment that came with the strap. I bought a couple of extra manfrotto base plates, they have a ring (used to tighten the screw) on the bottom that I connect the strap to. I have on base plate on my camera/grip and one each on my 2 long lenses that have the tripod foot adapters. That way no matter have lens setup I am using I can easily attach the camera or lens to my monopod or tripod as simple as unclipping the strap from the tightening ring on the base plate and snapping on to the ball head.
  14. Good ideas, I actually use a smallish Lowepro toploader shoulder bag when I want to have a little equipment and keep it easily accessible, so I would be partial to waist packs or better yet harness systems, but I don't have firsthand experience of neck problems. My view is that putting a lot of weight on the neck and shoulder area just doesn't work even if you're healthy -- better to move weight on the hips and make the equipment easy to access.
  15. Have you considered a wrist strap? I never bought one but created a crude one with a shoelace (not recommended). However, I believe that are manufactured. Good Luck.
  16. The Upstrap camera strap is really "grippy," but I don't think this is going to solve your problem. As mentioned above, you need to move the weight from your back/neck to either your belt or a roller bag.
    To move the weight to the belt, I sometimes use a large fanny pack, for a single camera. But my D2h barely fits. And fanny packs aren't exactly fashionable. But it does work, and my back appreciates it.
    I also use a roller bag that I got at a trade show, with hand-built cardboard slots inside to hold the gear. This is really great when I want to carry a lot. It's accessible from the top, which is important--I don't want to have to unzip to switch cameras or lenses. I can haul 20-30 lb of equipment with ease, and easy access. It's a little loud when rolled on pavement, that's the biggest downside. Otherwise, this is a perfect solution, for me. Cheers, Gregory
  17. I used to complain about neck ache from carrying a heavy camera and lens for long periods until a friend suggested hanging the strap over my shoulder instead. A simple idea that is very effective and comfortable. Ive never hung a camera around my neck since.
  18. Hi Phil. I don't know if this will help you, but maybe it will help others reading this. I don't have any back problems, but I'm a rather small person, so hanging the camera around my neck gets pretty uncomfortable. I have one of these harnesses that works well for me. It takes all of the pressure off of my neck. Plus, when you bring the camera up to take a picture, it slides along the harness, so you don't need to remove it to take a picture. I know what you mean about not being able to try things in a store. I don't like to buy things unless I see them first either. Maybe you can buy a few things at the same time from a place that has a liberal return policy and then return what didn't work for you. Here's a picture of the harness I use. This is the elastic version, but I use the web version. B and H's web version picture doesn't really show the design.
  19. I see you've gotten a lot of great suggestions & I'd say you have some more research to do. I'll add on strap.... Tamrac Digital. I like them a lot & have them on all my digital cameras. It has give & it is soft. I often crisscross it across my chest which makes for far easier carrying.
    Good luck in this choice
    Lil :)
  20. I have just purchased this Nikon hand strap, works really well and gives added hand braceing when composing shots, no more straps getting in the way./
    Hope your neck gets better.

  21. If you are carrying a large Nikon or other camera with motor drive and telephoto lens you are going to have some problems with the weight of the camera. As you did not state what camera you are carrying I will assume that it is one of those. I did carry a camera like that for a long time. Even without problems after a day of carrying an F4 with one telephoto lens my neck was sore too. I went to a lower weight camera which I find much easier to carry with a hand strap. I, therefore, recommend a lighter camera with on fixed lens. Gordy straps He sells straps that fit comfortably in one hand and are extremely sturdy, undeer $20 last I checked. I have several of them. I can also can state that with any rangefinder of SLR or light digital I find that the neck strap wrapped around the right hand is quite comfortable for me but not as secure as a wrist strap.
  22. Sorry Phill I gave you the wrong link %26 Lenses&cat2=Digital Cameras %26 Accessories&cat3=Camera Accessories&feature1=Nikon&Startat=61
  23. Best straps I have found are the ones that use a stretchy neoprene material like the ones from Tamrac. Acts like a shock absorber and makes a big difference when using a camera with a heavy lens like the 70-200mm. Some of the straps with quick release buckles will self release which is not good, but overall I like quick release straps so I can remove them while the camera is mounted to a tripod and get them out of the way.
    I bought an Upstrap which I used one time and then retired it to my used strap collection.There is also the Kuban harness that holds a camera at chest height and puts the weight evenly on both shoulders. Tamrac makes a chest harness for use with many camera bags and it sells for only $14.
    The holsters work well in theory but some like the LowePro models rely on a should strap which defeats the purpose, and others are quite bulky if they are to hold a camera with a large lens mounted.
    Your best bet is to shop on the Internet for "chest harness camera". Some very good ones are designed for use by people operating radio controlled models as the controller box can be large and heavy.
    One of the best harnesses I have come across is this one that does not require the weight and bulk of a chest holster to work:
  24. "The thing that puts me off about the Black Rapid is that you have to remove the strap to mount it on a tripod. "
    I've been meaning to ask for a BlackRapid interface to a quick relaese plate. That would be more convenient.
  25. carry over your shoulder, not around your neck... In any case, I have the Nikon very wide nylon strap for my Nikon F6. Not a wide selection of colors (yellow or burgundy) but they are so comfortable that I do not mind.
  26. +1 for the Up-Strap! Its is so confortable because you just relax your shoulder and the strap just hangs and stays put. I am a 6'3", and the supplied Nikon straps were just too short to carry on my shoulder.
  27. anyone using the tamrac neoprene boomerang strap? I was wondering if these Quick Release Buckles are safe to use
  28. Phil, I would recommend the OpTech Pro Loop straps. Used it with my D2Hs, SB800 and 17-55mm f2.8 and it feels a lot lighter than with the original Nikon strap. I have tried using it during long walks and did not feel the weight of the equipment; in fact my shoulder bag felt heavier!
  29. One thing to note when hanging the camera unprotected overt the shoulder; it is much easier to bump it into something than when having it in front. Apparently it isn't totally unheard of lenses getting damaged this way. Just one thing to keep in mind when carrying a camera.
  30. Phil, I would reccomend either the OP/TECH pro loop or super classic. I use a super classic, and even with my 80-200 2.8 AF-D (which is a heavy sucker) I don't even notice the weight. They are also nice because the quick disconnects allow you to easily remove the strap for putting in a bag or doing tripod work. Plus they have little nubbies to keep them in place incase you want to throw the strap on your shoulder.

    They are more comfortable than the UPSTRAP, which is just a chunk of rubber IMO.

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