Should you be using a neck or hand strap on your camera? Does it even matter?
Sometimes I take a really long time deciding what to buy. It was definitely the case when I picked up my first stand alone camera (the Olympus E-P5) as it was when I bought a bag last year. In these situations I’ll try to imagine the different use cases I’ll have for it, what functions I need it to do, if it is worth getting something that can do everything ok, or something that will do one job really well (and maybe another not at all) and so on. After a long evaluation I’ll usually make a purchase only then to realise I was wrong [the last two examples are proof of this!]
The most recent area of pondering I’ve had is with camera straps.
My olympus came with a decent enough olympus neck strap that did the job it was supposed to. It kept the camera on my neck. However, most of the time I found myself trying to tie it round my wrist so I could more easily move the camera. With that in mind I thought it would be better to just get a hand strap such as the premium gordy leather strap, or the dirt cheap leather strap from DSLRKit US UK so I thought it would be worth weighing up the pros and cons of each type of strap.
- hand straps are smaller
- hand straps give you more flexibility
- hand straps put your finger near the trigger the whole time
- hand straps can be used with camera bags to let you rest your hands
- neck straps let you use both hands
- neck straps are great if you have two cameras (imagine trying to switch between cameras with both on handstraps :S )
- neck straps let you rest your arms if you are carrying heavy gear
So as you can see they both have advantages and disadvantages. In general, I think it depends on how you shoot and what you prefer, though you may well find that the grass is always greener.
What I Picked
In the end, I picked up the Street Strap. It’s a light, solid, and surprisingly smooth neck strap which, due to its rope-like nature, can easily wrap around your wrist like a hand strap. It’s not AS good as a hand strap when you wrap it around your wrist…but it’s good enough for me.
Which do you prefer? Neck or Hand straps?
Also published on Medium.