Though you may spend hundreds – or even thousands – on your camera and the myriad lenses you need to get that perfect shot, it is often some smaller items that ensure your camera is as comfortable and easy to use as possible that really make the difference. One of the best and most cost-effective ways to ensure the comfort and safety of your camera is to get a fantastic wrist strap.
Whether you are at a concert to see your favorite band, a stadium to watch your favorite team, or traveling the world, a wrist strap is an important and oft overlooked piece of camera equipment. They create convenience and quick-draw ease, which in turn makes your camera much more accessible so that you can get it up to your eye and snap the shot in a split second of time.
While your camera may very well come with a hand grip camera strap, there is a pretty good chance that it is thin and quite weak. Though a minimalist strap may be perfect for something light like a clutch or a light bag, something as heavy and valuable as your camera deserves something quite a bit sturdier so that you can feel confident it will hold up in even the most harsh and unpredictable conditions.
What should you consider when you are purchasing the perfect hand grip camera strap? Here are five things to keep in mind before you buy.
Cost of total investment
If your camera costs you in the hundreds or thousands of dollars, you are going to want to make sure to spend the appropriate amount of money to best ensure that you do not drop that highly valuable piece of machinery. If you are unsure that it is worth it, simply take some time to think about the flexibility that a high-quality strap offers you. You don’t want to depend on something that can be pulled off, broken, or easily slip off your hand when you are in a crowded area, and you definitely don’t want something that might come loose and risk your camera falling to the ground when you are paying attention to something else.
The strap that originally came with your camera might be perfectly capable of bearing the weight of the core body of your camera, but depending on the kind of lenses you are planning on using, your camera may ultimately become twice as heavy than it originally was – sometimes even more.
For that reason, you want to make sure that you have a strap that is strong and sturdy enough to bear the weight of the full frame body and any heavy add ons that you might plan to use now or in the future.
Length of the strap
There are two major factors that make up the length of the strap: the distance between the fastener to your camera and loop, and the length of the loop itself that goes around your wrist.
If you are interested in using a short strap, make sure to keep in mind that using one of these straps with a smaller camera is ideal for quick-trigger moments where you want to take pictures of live events. With a larger camera plus an additional lens, a short strap might not be long enough as you will likely want to be able to strap the camera around your shoulder or across your chest so that it is safe and secure when you are not holding it up to take photos.
Beyond that, if you have large hands, you will need to find a hand strap with more distance from the fastening mechanism to the end of the strap so that you can quickly and easily strap the camera into place. If you have smaller hands, the overall length might not be a major issue, but the size of the loop that you slip your hand through could be an issue. If the loop is too large, your hand could slide out and give you a false sense of security.
Camera Strap Material
Another thing to look out for is the material in which the strap is made out of. The strength of the strap, comfort on your skin and durability are three major things to keep in mind. You will also want to think about whether the material is washable, how it will stand up against sun exposure and sweat, and whether you are allergic to any types of material that a strap could be made with. You can learn about different material through doing quick Google searches.
Two other things related to the material that your ideal strap is made out of should also be related to the flexibility of that material. Finding something that is a good combination of soft and malleable while also strong and sturdy is the ultimate goal for camera-carriers.
Finally, there is no reason why a bit of style cannot impact the final decision that you make with your camera strap. If you are a city lover who likes to look sleek and modern, a neon-colored or waterproof strap might be best for you. If you are looking for a more classic and perhaps even rugged look, you might want something made out of sturdy leather. Or if you don’t really care about how it looks, go for something that is most simple.
No matter what your personal style is or how you want your camera strap to match that style, remember that the most important thing overall is that the strap fits snugly and comfortably. While a huge selection of straps on the market, there truly is something for everyone. With that being said, do not get overwhelmed and forget to get a trusty strap altogether. If you do not have a strap, you risk dropping your camera right when you need it most!