I follow quite a few photographers and photography websites, so I can’t remember exactly how I came across Peak Design’s Capture Camera Clip v2 Kickstarter campaign. All I know is that one day in early July I checked out their video and company website and promptly backed their campaign to the extent that the GeoK family would end up with four CapturePRO clips – one for each of us.
As July transitioned to August, we watched the number of backers steadily rise. And every time we went out hiking, at least one of us would comment on how great it would be to have our CapturePRO Camera Clips.
If you’ve ever been hiking with a camera larger than pocket-sized, you’ll know that you’re stuck with one of the following scenarios:
- You carry your camera on a strap around your neck and it thumps you gently in the diaphragm every time you take a step;
- As per 1, but whenever you’re not taking photographs you sling one arm through the strap to keep the camera from thumping you and then have to awkwardly extract your arm if you need to take off your pack or when you’re ready to take another photograph;
- You leave your camera in your pack unless you see something you really want to photograph, at which point you remove your pack, take out your camera, take the photograph, stow the camera and finally slip your pack back on;
- As a variation of 3, you don’t actually take your pack off but rather slip one arm out of a strap, swivel the pack around on the hip belt and remove your camera while awkwardly balancing your pack on one hip; or
- Get so fed up with options 1 through 4 that you eventually stop carrying your full-sized camera when hiking.
Our family was using a combination of options two through four. And the situation was worse when we were out mountain biking; everyone but me would leave all their camera gear at home and I would just bring along a little point-and-shoot in a small camera bag that would hang off the chest strap of my Camelbak.
It late August we received an email from Peak Design letting us know we had to select which type(s) of plates we wanted to have shipped with our CapturePRO Camera Clips. After a bit of discussion, we opted for two MICROplates and two ARCAplates (seemed the best solution given we all carry MFT format cameras and given the various tripods we currently own). Peak Design took a few weeks to get their shipping organized for non-U.S. customers (they learned some valuable lessons with their v1 clip and wanted to take a little extra time to minimize customs hassles and import duties), so our shipment finally arrived around the third week of October.
I wish I’d taken a photo of the packaging. It was quite sleek and attractive and reminded me a bit of Apple’s packaging. Each package contained an instruction sheet, a CapturePRO Camera Clip, the applicable plate, a drawstring carrying bag and an Allen key. I’ve not been able to firm fasten the plate to my camera without using the Allen key (although in one instance I was desperate and used the pliers on my multi-tool to do the job).
Mr. GeoK and I used our CapturePRO Camera Clips for the first time when we hiked Arethusa Cirque in late October. They did exactly what we hoped they’d do – kept our cameras readily accessible while eliminating that irritating chest thump and/or need to sling your arm through the camera strap. For me, the very best thing is that I came home from hiking without a headache! In hindsight, I think the weight of the camera strap around my neck while hiking was just enough of an irritant that I’d always come home from hiking with a headache.
I have since used my CapturePRO on three different packs. It’s quite easy to attach and detach as needed, although buckles and hydration clips have limited my placement options on one of my packs.
Some users have reported difficulty removing their camera from the clip, but I haven’t had troubles. It’s possible to make the clip quite stiff or relatively easy to release and I’ve found that keeping it fairly easy to release works really well.
I continue to leave my camera strap hanging loosely around my neck, so that my camera is secure once it’s released from the clip. Mr. GeoK finds his dangling strap a little irritating, so he’s looking into Peak Design’s Leash system as an alternative. If you have used this product, we’d love to know what you think, so please leave a comment.
SUMMARY: We’re really happy with this product. It seems very well made and is perfectly suited for carrying our MFT format cameras while hiking and biking. I’m particularly happy that it solves two problems for me: 1) no more camera bumping against my diaphragm as I hike; and 2) apparently no more post-hiking headaches from carrying a camera around my neck all day!
We haven’t the CapturePRO Camera Clips much in conjunction with our tripods yet. At this point, we’ve concluded that they aren’t very Joby Gorillapod friendly, as we either have to remove the plates from our cameras to mount the cameras directly to the Gorillapods OR remove the clips from our packs to mount those to the Gorillapods and then snap in the cameras. This second option is a little easier (especially if you forget to bring your Allen key along) but it makes the Gorillapods fairly top heavy. I expect this won’t be an issue with our full-sized tripods, as the MICROplates or DUALplates should fit directly onto various tripods, but will provide an update or comment once we know for sure.
And mountain biking season was over for us by the time our CapturePRO clips arrived, so it’ll be 2014 before we’re able to see how this product works when we’re out on two wheels. I’ll do my best to remember to post an update at that time.
Have you tried any of Peak Design’s solutions? Or something similar? If you care to share your experiences and recommendations, please leave a comment and/or a link to your write-up.
For updated comments and feedback based on our first six months using CapturePRO Clips in Canada and New Zealand, read this post.
BONUS CODE – Finally, for anyone reading one of our Peak Design product reviews, we’re happy to offer a bonus gift on orders of US$65 or more. This offer is good at the Peak Design online store and is available to anyone (referral link updated as at May 17/2017). The selection of free gifts may vary over time. Free gifts may not be returned for credit or exchange. Finally, if you return the original order, you will also be required to return the free gift.