Think Tank Photo Perception 15 Review

When I made the switch from DSLR to mirrorless, it meant having to re-think my camera bags, all of which were made for DSLR’s and bigger lenses. Tamrac’s Evolution 8 was just way too big, but there really weren’t many options for mirrorless camera users. I didn’t want another shoulder bag since the Think Tank Retrospective 7 I wasn’t using suddenly was just about the right size. But backpack choices were non-existent, until Think Tank released the Perception series.

Think Tank Perception 15 - what's in the bag
The Perception 15 – obligatory what’s in the bag shot.

Features
The Perception 15 was the size I went for, having a sleeve for a 15” laptop, which proved a suitable home for an A4 pad, which is what I used it for.

Perception laptop sleeve
The Laptop Sleeve fits a 15 inch laptop.

The outside of the bag has two pockets. The larger bottom one holds the rain cover, and really isn’t much use for anything else once the rain cover is in there. (I wish Think Tank would stash the rain covers under the bag like they do with some of their smaller pouches and like Lowepro does)! The top pocket is useful for storing a memory card wallet, a phone, snacks and other odds and ends. A small tuckaway pocket right at the top of the bag holds a small strap to hold a tripod.

Inside the bag there are two pouches attached to the bag of the bag. One designed for the camera with a lens, and a second for a lens. These are a great size and took the Sony A6000 with Zeiss 16-50, the 55-210 lens sitting comfortable in the other pouch. Under the pouches is plenty of room for other things such as gloves, a small jacket or a spare lens. I filled a Cable Manager 20 with odds and ends and had the Sony 10-18 F4 in a neoprene pouch and another pouch with filters. All fitted without any problems.

Think Tank Perception inside view
The Inside of the bag, showing the two pouches, pockets and the gear you can stow at the bottom. (My Olympus OM2n sitting in for my Sony A6000)

The inner front of the bag has Think Tanks usual assortment of pockets. If there’s one thing Think Tank excels at, it is the number of pockets and pouches available for organising things. I’ve yet to find a company that does this better.

Comfort
This is, without doubt, one of the most comfortable backpacks I’ve ever used. The shoulder straps have lots of padding. Let’s face it, the bag is not heavy with mirrorless gear in it, but even when loaded with the laptop, you barely feel the weight and I was happily carrying the backpack for a full day without feeling the need to take it off and give my shoulders a rest. It doesn’t have a waist strap to balance the weight and to be honest, it doesn’t need it.

Think Tank Perception backpack in use
A very comfortable bag and not too bulky

Size
The bag is a bit chunkier than some mirrorless backpacks that have started to appear – thanks mainly to the laptop sleeve, but it is still a small, compact bag. I never felt I had to be careful in shops or moving through crowds like I did with the Evolution 8. It’s also an ideal size for a daypack, stowing everything I needed for a day’s outing.

Ease of Use
It was all so promising, but this is a typical backpack with typical backpack problems. in order to get at your gear, you have to take the backpack off, put it on the floor, and root around for what you want. Accessing the lens at the top of the bag is easy and quick, but getting at anything underneath the pouches is awkward and soon gets irritating.
Although you can fit a travel tripod onto the front of the bag, it’s not the best. It does tend to crush the top of the bag and with a tripod attached, it’s even harder to access anything stashed below the two pouches.

think tank Perception with tripod attached
With The 3-Legged Thing VYV tripod attached

Final Thoughts
On the plus side, The Perception 15 is a good size, comfortable and has lots of space for gear. It’s also a nice looking backpack, certainly one of the more pleasing designs Think Tank have come up with.
On the negative side, it is just so awkward getting at everything and I found myself becoming increasingly frustrated as the day progressed. Think Tank have addressed this with the new Trifecta bags, which have side panels like Tamrac’s Evolution.
If you don’t mind taking a bag off to access gear, or don’t need to access anything often beyond the lens pouch, then this is a bag worth looking at, otherwise you might be better off with a shoulder bag, or something like the Trifecta.

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Think Tank Retrospective 7 Review

The Retrospective 7


think tank retrospective 7

When it comes to camera bags, I can’t help myself. Finding that perfect bag is a lifelong quest and each photographer will have their own requirements. I love using the Tamrac Evolution 8 as my main goto bag, but sometimes it’s nice to have the ease of a shoulder bag.

I’ve used Think tank’s modular components for a while now and love them, so when I saw the Retrospective 7 at Focus on Imaging this year I decided to pick one up. It was a good deal and I love the look of the bag. Admittedly, it was an impulse buy, and I didn’t really need it. But have I said how good it looks!

Features
My baseline for a good shoulder bag has always been Lowepro’s Reporter series of bags. I have a first generation Reporter 300 which now serves as my lighting bag. A comfortable pocket rich bag with more nooks and crannies than you can shake a stick at. Think Tank have that same approach. There are pockets and pouches everywhere – just like a good bag should have.

The strap is a solid one that doesn’t detach and has a comfy pad that slides along the strap. Main compartment for the camera gear. Pocket for memory cards, pens, batteries etc.

retrospective 7 front pouch

A front external pouch for assorted stuff which Think Tank say can hold a camera body. Not sure I’d trust it with a camera body, but plenty of people do. There are small pockets on either side of the bag. A zip up pocket at the back to fit up to a 10 inch tablet. Rain cover, sound silencers (basically some clever velcro trickery) and side straps that will take modular components and expand the bag.

And it looks fantastic.

Comfort
The pad on the strap is a spongy one and is really quite comfortable. The bag isn’t so big that you can overload it with gear anyway, so the bag was never too heavy when loaded up.

It is a messenger style bag, so not so chunky and being a softer type of bag it doesn’t hold rigidly to its shape.

Size
inside the retrospective 7

The Retrospective 7 is not a massive bag, neither is it a small one.
retrospective 7 contents
You can fit quite a bit of gear in it – as you can see above – but it is a tight squeeze and I found stuffing this much gear into the bag made it difficult to get at the lenses. For me, it just needed an extra inch in the length to make it better.

Ease of Use
The front flap of the bag flips up to give access. There are no zips. The flap is held down by a couple of large velcro patches, which can be folded over so the flap lifts up and over without any sound. A very simple solution if you want quick and quiet access during a shoot.
retrospective 7 sound silencers

The velcro patches hold the flap down well, but at the slightest hint of rain and you’ll want the rain cover on.
rain cover

This, for me, is a massive drawback, especially in the North of England where the weather does what it likes and tends to annoy us whenever it gets a chance. The gear is quite exposed to the elements.

Getting at each of the pockets is quick and that is the real benefit of this bag. Indeed of most Think Tank bags. It only becomes a problem when things get tight and then certain spaces inside the bag get awkward to use.

Final Thoughts
This is a strange bag for me. I absolutely love the look and design of the bag. I love the way it has been thought out. You can tell the bag has been designed by photographers. I like the open flap design of the bag – something Lowepro have now copied for their Pro Messenger AW bags, but I don’t like how it leaves my gear exposed to the ever present Northern rain and drizzle.

I also wish I could give some anecdotal tales of how great this bag was in use, but it has never left the house. Often I’ve loaded the bag up only to find it wasn’t quite big enough – in which case I’d load up the Tamrac – or was just a bit too big for what I wanted – in which case I’d load up my holster and add a lens pouch.

I’m sure for some, this bag is the ideal size. For me, it just needs to be either an inch bigger or an inch smaller.

There’s no denying this is a well made bag. The phrase ‘you pay for what you get’ certainly rings true with Think Tank. It’s just not quite right for me.

Think Tank’s page for the Retrospective 7 is here…http://www.thinktankphoto.com/products/retrospective-7-blueslate.aspx

Pure Class

When I first decided to replace my Nikon F60, I decided I wanted something smallish and quiet. Something unassuming so I could use it around the streets of Leeds without everyone hearing the motor drive. My first choice within my price range was Nikon’s FG. Then, by accident, I noticed an Olympus OM-2n for pretty much the same price as the FG! I couldn’t believe I could get a top of the range OM for the same price as a bottom of the range Nikon. Well, that seemed like a no-brainer!

I found a nice condition OM-2n with 50mm F1.8 Zuiko lens, and to make it better, the seals were renewed, which saved me a job. All for the price of a Nikon FG. Go figure!

Olympus OM-2n

First Impressions
It maybe down to personal taste, but there is something about the OM-2n that looks fantastic. It is small for an SLR and light and it oozes quality. Every button, switch and dial feels as if someone gave a damn when it was built. Not disappointed.

In Use
Being compact, my fingers tended to struggle to find a comfortable grip. Yet when out shooting with it, I didn’t notice it. I grabbed it, shot and held it without thinking or being bugged. Even with large hands, it’s nice to shoot with.
The viewfinder is big and bright and it has a match needle for metering. This is the only let down for me really – I’m not a fan of match needles as they can be hard to see. This one is particularly tough. The viewfinder appears so big, that the match needle is about a half a mile over to the left. Thankfully, metering on the OM-2n is near bullet-proof.

Leeds Central Library
Left on aperture priority, I was quite pleased with the exposure here. A mixture of highlights and lowlights and the camera has exposed the shot evenly.

For adjustment in auto, a chunky exposure compensation dial sits near the shutter button that can compensate in thirds of a stop with firm clicks. Nice. The exposure compensation dial is also where the ASA is set.

For manual mode, the shutter is placed around the lens mount, which does take some getting used to if, like me, you’re used to it by the shutter. it doesn’t take long to get used to it though. The one thing I did struggle with however was the location of the aperture ring. If it had been in front of the shutter ring, it wouldn’t have been a problem, but I kept having to look for it at the front of the lens. Thankfully, many of the Zuiko zoom lenses place the aperture ring at the back of the lens.

50mm lens
Nice though the 50mm F1.8 is, I’m just used to zooms and so a 35-70 is on the cards at some point. Another issue I had with the 50mm was the focus ring. Although only 3/4 of a turn from minimum focus to infinity, it seems to take several turns to focus it. I found I needed to change my grip on the lens to focus it, then change my grip again to adjust the aperture. There’s no denying the image quality of the 50mm, it’s just not the easiest 50mm to focus.

Results
If it was going to be my main lunchtime camera around Leeds, I needed to test in and around Leeds, ending up at the Central Library again. Loaded up with Fuji Pro400H colour negative film, it produced some nice results, with no over or under exposed shots.

PoundLand
Not the greatest composition, but nicely exposed.

Leeds Central Library

Conclusion
The OM-2n earned a reputation as a reliable workhorse and I can see why. I’d rate it as the most consistent and reliable manual focus SLR I’ve ever used. It’s not perfect, but then again, what is? For the price though, this has got to be the best used manual focus SLR money can buy.
Olympus OM-2n top

Naneu Pro Lima Review

Before I bought a Tamrac Evolution, I looked at shoulder bags. I have always considered Lowepro’s Reporter series of bags to be the benchmark for shoulder bags, but I wanted something slimmer. I also wanted something that zipped shut, so most messenger style bags like those by Vanguard, Tenba and Tamrac were out. Lowepro had released the Classified series and the only other real contenders were made by Naneu Pro and Think Tank Photo. by the time I was ready to make a choice, I opted for the Evolution, and have ditched shoulder bags for good. (I’m sure I will eat those words some day!) Then I saw a naneu Pro bag on ebay going dirt cheap, so I bought it just to see what it was like.

Naneu Pro Lima Bag

Naneu Pro’s Lima briefcase style bag is part of their Military Ops range of bags, which have a unique take on what a the camera bag. This bag is an early version of the bag, and looking at Naneu’s site, it looks like they’ve made a few improvements.

Features
The bag is nice to look at. It’s a not quite olive drab colour, which I quite like, but also comes in black. It has 8 pockets. It has webbing straps all over it, double strap carry handle in a velcro wrap, 8 pockets, side attachment loops for pouches (these take Lowepro Street and Field pouches) 8 pockets and removable inserts. Oh, and did I mention it has 8 pockets.

Pockets are the order of the day, it was one of the things I loved about the reporter bag. Not only did it have loads of pockets, it had loads of the right pockets – pockets that were actually useful. The Lima is the same. Two large zip up pockets, one on the inside and one on the outside are great for notebooks, papers, and things like that. There are two mesh pockets inside the bag as well that are great for stashing body caps, lens caps, remote release chords, gum, memory cards, etc.

The real genius pocket is a large stash pocket on the front of the bag which has a magnetic fold-over opening. This is such a genius idea I can’t believe more manufacturers don’t use it. Finally there are two small stash pockets for caps and hoods fixed by press studs and velcro (not the easiest to use) and a packet for papers on the back that can be unzipped at the bottom and allows the bag to be slid over luggage carry handles.

It also has a compass. And it works. Sometimes!

comfort
Here I had to smile. The bag comes with a nice, well padded shoulder strap that looks almost identical to lowepro’s comfort strap. It’s a copy, but not as good as the original. Still, it’s a better strap than you’ll get on most shoulder bags these days, so kudos to Naneu for not skimping on that part.

The bag is a soft bag and molds nicely to you, which I really like. I found it comfy, but then I didn’t have a lot of gear in it when testing it out and I didn’t have it on for the whole day.

size
It’s a smallish bag, 9″ high, 14″ across and 5″ deep on the outside and the camera compartment measures in at 7.5″ high, 11.75″ across and 3.75″ deep. It won’t take any pro DSLR’s or DSLR’s with a battery pack and to be honest, it is a tight squeeze. I managed to get a camera body with standard lens, 35mm f1.8 and another lens. That’s about all I managed to fit in it. I could have replaced the second lens with a flashgun and batteries, but for the size of the bag, I would have liked to have squeezed a bit more in it.

The problem I found was the way the inserts were arranged. There are two inserts, one large enough for the camera and one for extras. The second insert is big enough for a single lens though. You won’t get much more in it. (It looks like Naneu have changed the inserts to a single one, so there’ll be a little bit more room for gear.)

ease of use
The main problem I found with the bag was that once my gear was in, it felt like a tight squeeze all around. It was difficult getting into the extra pockets and getting at my gear wasn’t easy, and this was a trend I found in using the bag. The main compartment has a single zip – easy enough, but to get at the zip, you need to undo a buckle, undo the velcro wrap to split the handle and then unzip, then undo the pull-strings on the inserts and then pull the camera out. Shoulder bags are supposed to be easy and quick to work out of. This one isn’t. Even with the handles split and buckles undone and everything open, it was still a struggle to get at the camera.

The thing I really began to hate about the bag though were the inserts. Made from a bright orange fuzzy felt material, the dividers don’t stick and put a camera body on them and they crumble. They were horrible and next to useless. Hopefully this is something Naneu have changes.

In Conclusion
The Lima is a nice looking bag. It’s different. It doesn’t look like a camera bag. It’s tough and has lots of useful pockets. Those are the positives of the bag. in use, the bag sucks, and sadly, it doesn’t matter how good it looks, or how many pockets there are, if it is awkward to use, then it’s just no good as a camera bag. (With the inserts removed though, it does make a pretty good man-bag!)

To be honest, if you have a choice, spend the extra and buy the Lowepro Classified 160AW. I’ve played with the Classified 160 and really liked it. You get so much more bag for a little bit more money.

pictures

Lima Bag with gear inside
With gear inside. The main insert is a good size, but the second insert seems like an afterthought. Notice how the camera is sinking on the left side.

Lima bag Inner pockets
With the fuzzy felt inserts removed and the magnet closing pocket opened up.
Lima bag outer pockets
With the front zipper pocket and the rear pocket open. Naneu really does like pockets!!

New Arrival

A review of the Nikon F60

After retiring the F301 it was time to replace it, and that replacement arrived the other day. That replacement came in the form of a new old stock F60 in champagne silver. At the end of the day, I just wanted an auto focus camera that was simple and cheap and this fit the bill. It even came with a gold box. (I do have a thing for those gold boxes 😉 ) I really liked the look of it, and at the end of the day, Ken Rockwell said not to buy one, so that sealed the deal.

When compared to practically every camera that followed it, the F60 lags behind. It has a single auto focus point and the auto focus is slow and loud. The film wind is slow. The matrix metering switches to centre weighted whenever you press the AE lock button and there’s no depth of field preview. Let’s face it, the F65, F75 and f55 are probably all better cameras in the light of the F60’s many flaws, and though the F75 and F65 are selling for a bit of a premium really, the F55 sells for about the same price.

Nikon F60

So why did I buy it?

Well, let me make some remarks in defense of the little beastie. Firstly, it has a metal chassis and a metal lens mount, so the build quality is better than the other camera’s I’ve mentioned. I liked the F75, but if I was going to spend that much, I would have bought an F90X or an F80, and though I like the look of the F55, I liked the F60 even more. I also wanted simplicity. I wanted a single focus point and since I was only going to partner it with a 35-70 AF lens, I figured the auto focus wasn’t going to struggle too much. Lastly, I realised no one was buying these fellas. Even the F401’s which, by all accounts, are truly awful cameras, were selling. The F60 was like the scrawny dog in the pet shop that nobody gives a second look at. even scrawny dogs deserve happy endings, right?

I have my favourite cameras. Canon’s EOS 50E, which was a delight to use. Nikon’s F100, which was a superb, bullet proof camera. My favourite though, was a noisy, simple, Pentax MZ-5N; in my opinion, probably the finest camera I’ve ever used. However, None of those cameras have made me smile as much as the F60. None of them beg to be picked up as much as the F60. It really is a nice, simple, camera.

For all the criticism leveled at the poor auto focus. It isn’t bad. It’s certainly not the loudest auto focus around; Pentax cameras made a lot more noise. Yes, the film wind is slow and loud, but the noise is musical and it’s as if the camera isn’t winding the film, but winding the world around the itself. I like it, and since I’m not planning on using it for sports, the motor speed is just fine.

Nikon F60 from the top

The camera is quite easy to use, even in manual. The command dial adjusts the shutter and a combination of a button by the shutter and command dial adjusts the aperture. Not that difficult, despite what some people would have you believe. There’s not many buttons on the camera and to be honest, I didn’t want too many. The main dial is simple and pretty much what you’ll find on most Nikon consumer DSLRs. It has the picture modes as well as PASM. Nothing complicated.

It isn’t without it’s faults. Some will see it as too simple a camera, which it is, and was addressed by the F65, F75 and even the F55. Yes there’s no depth of Field button, and though I don’t use it often, it is nice to have it sometimes. There are two flaws that do present problems though.

First, the Auto-exposure lock button sends the metering from Matrix into centre weighted when pressed. I really don’t understand the thinking behind that – perhaps the Nikon engineers were having a really bad day! You really do have to think about your metering if you use it, or take a reading and switch to manual, which is how I got around it. It slows you down, and that has been fine so far, but I’d hate to miss a shot because of that.

Second, there is no auto-focus lock. AF lock isn’t something I need usually. With focus points scattered all over the viewfinder these days, you just pick your spot and take the shot. With only one focus point though, I found I really needed to lock the focus and then re-compose. Only trouble is, when you recompose, the focus locks onto something else and you have to start over. I found that getting the focus and then switching to manual was the best way round it. Again, it slows me down, which is fine sometimes, but not always.

So it’s not a perfect camera. What is? What is important though is having a camera you enjoy using. One you want to have in your hands. One that makes photography a joy and not a chore. The F60 has certainly been all those things for me. Can’t ask for more than that. (Well, I can, but I won’t get it!)

The first roll of film has gone through it and been sent for processing. I can’t wait to see what the wee beastie has managed to do. By this time next week, I should know.

Neewer Wide and Telephoto Lens Review

Rule number 3: Photography is an expensive hobby
Rule number 4: but it doesn’t have to be.

Since digital SLR’s adopted the APS-C sized sensor, many film photographers converting to digital suddenly lost their wide angles. Like many, I liked my standard zoom to stretch to 24mm. Since manufacturers are a bit slow to catch up, the only other option is to buy an ultra wide angle zoom, but since they are rather expensive, (anyone else notice that lenses for a smaller sensor aren’t that smaller and are actually more expensive than they used to be for their 35mm equivalent?) I looked at a much cheaper option – Wide angle attachments.

Neewer 0.43x Wide Angle lens and 2.2x Telephoto Lens

The ones I went for were a package of wide angle and telephoto lens attachments in a 67mm thread. (Let’s face it. they’re really just filters that screw onto the front of a standard lens!) They’re available all over ebay and Amazon in a variety of filter sizes and prices.

First Impressions

The Neewer lenses are a pretty standard set and I imagine the same lenses will be offered under a number of different brands. They are boxed in a plain white box and each have a soft cloth case and front and rear caps, so not bad. They do weigh quite a bit and are fairly substantial.

Wide Angle Lens

Let’s start with the wide angle attachment. This is actually made up of two lenses, a wide angle one and a macro one. The macro lens can be used on its own, but the wide angle lens will only work in partnership with the macro lens.

This is where the old adage of ‘you get what you pay for’ comes in to play.

Wide Angle attachment on Nikon 18-105 at 18mm

 As you can see, there’s some serious vignetting and a real lack of sharpness at the edges. By the time you crop these out, you have less than what you would have had at 18mm. If you zoom in to remove the vignetting, you get to about 50mm and you end up with a strange zoom style motion blur that I really don’t find that pleasant.

Wide angle attachment at 50mm

 I’ll be honest, If I wanted a blurry effect, I’d use a lensbaby.

Macro Lens

OK. So the wide angle lens is a bust. What about the macro lens?

I’ll admit that I’ve never really done macro well, and I’ve only one other macro lens to compare it too, but the other lens (a Sigma Macro filter) was sharper.

Using the Macro Lens

 That’s not a bad result, but look at the full size crops below and you’ll see some nasty colour fringing at the edges as well as loss of sharpness. it does pick out some remarkable detail in the centre though.

Centre crop, full size

 

corner crop full size

 I’d say the macro lens was an average one, and you’re likely to find much better close up filters for not much more.

Telephoto Lens

I didn’t really want the telephoto lens, but it came free for the same price other’s were selling the wide angle lens alone for. This really is a hefty attachment though and I wouldn’t be keen to have this on my lens on a regular basis.

telephoto attachment at 105mm

 Actually, the results weren’t too bad. A little edge softness compared to 105mm without the attachment, but not at all bad.

Conclusion

I guess I could have done this review in a couple of choice words, but that’s not exactly helpful. So, does rule number 4 come into play here? Can you buy these and save some money, or is it worth spending (much) more? In this case, I’d have to blunt and conclude that these lenses suck. Save up your money and buy an ultra-wide angle lens. There are Sigma and Tokina lenses available for a couple of hundred quid and if you’re real lucky, you’ll find a second hand bargain. Just don’t waste your money on these.

Sling Strap Round-up | Black Rapid | Carry Speed | Quick Strap

Camera Sling Straps

Well, three sling straps have been put through their paces and I’ve come to one conclusion at least; sling straps are so much better than neck straps. If you’re fed up of your camera neck strap, give one of these a go. They do take some getting used to, but once you get the hang of it, they are so much better for carrying and using your camera. After each review I tried each of the straps again, with and without the under-arm straps. My dad came along for a shoot and tried one of them out, so his feedback will feed into the final results. (He’s now a convert too.)

Black Rapid RS-4, Carry Speed CS1 and the Quick Strap
The three contenders

To round up, rather than look at each strap individually again, I thought I’d look at how each strap fared with the qualities I was looking for.

Comfort
All three performed brilliantly as far as comfort goes. I can’t pick one out of the three so they each tie. Simply put, all three straps are far more comfortable than a regular neck strap.

In Use
This is where the post-review feedback comes in. Having tried each of the straps with the Carry Speed arm strap and the Black Rapid BRAD, I can honestly say the handling of each strap is greatly improved without the under-arm straps; more on that later.

Black Rapid RS-4

The RS-4 didn’t give quite enough slack when bringing the camera up to shooting position and the connector allows the camera to spin around far too much for my liking. The strap was easiest to adjust though.

Carry Speed CS-1

This was the poorest performer as far as slack in the strap, although it improves greatly without the under arm strap attached. The bumpers are the hardest to adjust as was the strap itself. The flat connecting plate is probably the best connector of the three. It was the hardest to connect, but that was down to the carabiner. My Dad tried out the CS-1 and discovered that the locking screw had unscrewed leaving the latch of the carabiner free and easy. The CS-1 had by far the worst carabiner of the three in use.

Quick Strap | Q Strap

This was easy to adjust, and easy to use. The connecting plate is a massive improvement over the Black Rapid one, but not quite as secure are the CS-1 plate, though not by much. The carabiner was identical to the Black Rapid one and the plate hooks on and off easily; by far the smoothest of the three. This was the only strap out of the three to give enough slack when shooting with the camera, yet keep it short enough to let the camera hang just where I wanted it.

Price
If it were not for price, then the Black Rapid and the Quick Strap would be pretty much tied, but it is a big price difference and I’m not sure the extra £30 can be justified by Black Rapid. Don’t get me wrong, it is a great strap and going by looks alone, I would give it the top spot. But that price difference is quite big considering the differences are quite small.

About Those Arm Straps
After the BRAD arrived, I tried it out on each of the straps and to be honest, it sucked as much as the strap that came with the CS-1. I eventually decided to mod the Carry Speed arm strap, cutting away about two and a half inches of strap and re-stitching it so that the quick release buckle was at the front rather than the middle. This improved it immensely, but although it kept the shoulder pad in place, it restricted the amount of slack on the strap and it proved very difficult to bring the camera up to shooting position on any of the straps, so my advice is not to bother with them. Yes, the shoulder pad will slip and slide all over when you’re shooting, but use the bottom bumper and the pad will sit where it should when the camera sits where it should.

And the winner is…

Quick Strap Q Strap
The Winner

Factor in the price and the fact that it simply does not get in the way of shooting and the Quick Strap| Q Strap comes ahead as a clear winner. My only criticism is that it comes with a single bumper and not two, but it is a minor complaint. (After a little modding (and robbing of a Naneu Pro bag), I managed to get a second bumper on it.) That aside, for the price, you can’t beat it and I heartily recommend it.