Image Credit: GCShutter via iStock
I've always been a big believer in "you get what you pay for."
In many cases (in photography, in particular), if you try to go cheap, you end up disappointed.
Over the years, I have tested innumerable tripods, camera bags, lenses, camera straps, and other gear. And to be frank, when I've tested budget-friendly items, I've almost always been disappointed.
But in this case, I finally found an inexpensive camera strap (less than $20!) that actually left a good impression on me.
Nearly four weeks ago, I ordered a strap from a company called HiiGuy.
It's an easier task for a camera strap manufacturer to make a strap that's comfortable and capable of carrying a smaller, lighter camera like my a6300, so when I tested the HiiGuy strap with my little Sony, I wasn't too surprised that it performed well.
However, it's a whole different ball game with a big, heavy camera like the D850, especially with an L-bracket and either a 24-70mm or 70-200mm lens attached.
Yet, my HiiGuy strap did very well - impressively well, in fact - when I paired it with my heavier D850.
With the Nikon and the Sony, the HiiGuy strap offered excellent flexibility and freedom of movement.
By that, I mean that it kept my camera secure by my side, but I never felt like my gear was in my way.
What's more, the clip that attaches the camera to the strap worked perfectly and allowed me to quickly release my cameras when I needed to.
That was an important test for my HiiGuy strap to pass, because when I ordered it on Amazon, I noticed a negative review from about a year ago regarding the clip.
Fortunately, HiiGuy reinvented the clip and completely updated it. Even when I added extra pressure on it by pulling it and my D850 in opposite directions, it held firm and was absolutely rock solid. I never felt any hesitation that the clip couldn't handle the D850 and my 24-70mm and 70-200mm lenses.
That feeling of security was helped by the addition of a safety strap that offers a second connection point between the camera and the strap. Talk about a fail-safe setup!
Another big surprise - especially when I used the strap with my D850 - was the level of comfort.
Even with a heavier load, the HiiGuy's big, padded shoulder pad helped disperse the weight of the camera and lens over a wider area, which helped stave off fatigue in my neck and shoulders.
In fact, last weekend, I wore this strap with my D850 for three continuous hours, and aside from it being like 200 degrees out, I was perfectly comfortable. That's just not something I've ever experienced with a camera strap at this price point.
I love that the shoulder pad has an anti-slip surface, too, so it held position on my shoulder without feeling too tight.
I also appreciate the handy zippered pocket that's built right into the strap.
It's a great spot for keeping extra memory cards, or in my case, an extra battery (which I needed when shooting with my a6300).
You could even use it to carry a credit card and some cash, a thing of Tic-Tacs, or whatever other small items you might need when you're out shooting.
On top of all that, this thing comes with a three-year warranty, which is certainly a feature that you don't find with inexpensive photography gear.
In other words, I've found my HiiGuy camera strap to be functional and comfortable while also providing my camera a rock solid and secure attachment. And with the aforementioned warranty and a price that can't be beat, I think I've found the ideal combination of functionality, quality, and price!
Photography can be pricey, we all know that.
As a consequence, I constantly get questions from photographers about economical choices for gear.
As I noted earlier, more often than not, the budget-friendly route usually ends up in a huge letdown, but every once in awhile, you find that needle in a haystack, the photography gear that's both a good value and a great product. My HiiGuy camera strap is certainly one of those items!