R-Strap Reviewed by Cameron Rains
This review was posted by Cameron Rains on his blog.
After a year of life, love, and photography with my Canon 5D Mark III DSLR, I found myself wanting for a better camera strap. Thank you for sending me the BlackRapid R-Strap Sport! Not that I am unappreciative that Canon throws in a free $2 piece of fabric with each of their multi-thousand dollar camera’s, but suffice it to say we can do better.
The main issues that come with your standard camera strap is that if you are carrying a camera of any reasonable weight or girth, is that they just become unwieldy. You take a large camera and place any reasonably sized lens on the front and what you really needs is a serious support system.
That is where the BlackRapid R-Strap (in any of it’s configurations) comes in to play. The strap is set up to span across the chest and over the shoulder with a varying degree of generosity in the pad (depending on model). The strap secures to the camera with a metal, yes METAL, locking caribiner and metal screw that attaches to your tripod mount. When you have your camera hooked up to the Black Rapid R-Strap, it is clear that your camera is going nowhere, and for me that is huge. If I am working an event where I have my Canon 5D Mark III with Battery Grip, Phottix Mitros ETTL Speedlight with Gary Fong Lightsphere, and Canon 24 - 105 f/4 L all hanging off of my camera strap, you gotta bet that I care about how it all is secured.
Additionally, the R in R-Strap stands for Rapid (oh you branding guru’s strike again), and the strap provides just such a facility. As supposed to most static camera straps, that require the user to literally rotate the strap around their body to change camera positions (fighting the underside adhesion as you go), with the BlackRapid R-Strap, the camera mount is on a bracketed length of the strap, allowing for customizable ranges of motion. In short, the user can cary the camera at their side, and then draw their camera (like a gunslinger) to their eye, and then return the camera without having to wrestle the strap into a different position. One knock here is that if you want to shoot in Portrait orientation with a battery grip, you will need to work around the mounting screw on the bottom. A small sacrifice at best.
While BlackRapid makes multiple configurations of the R-Strap, I went with the Sport, because it came with the Brad, which is a lateral stabilizer that loops under the armpit for extra support, and a near 100% guarantee that there is no way you are going to look cool wearing it… so yeah, a slight CON here would be that it is not all together inconspicuous. But that’s fine, nothing said, “Hey rob me, I have a stupid expensive camera,” like old faithful…