UL Weather Protection for DSLRs
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Nico .
(NickB) - MLife

Locale: Los Padres National Forest
UL Weather Protection for DSLRs on 02/25/2013 11:16:43 MST Print View

I recently came across these Outex Cases via a couple of acquaintances who are professional surf photographers; they've been using them for the last year or so and seem to be pretty pleased with them.

They look like a reasonably affordable and light method to have a waterhousing for a DSLR and/or to provide good weather protection for rainy, snowy or dusty environments. For about a pound, I could have a fully weather- and waterproof set-up for hiking trips, traveling, etc.

I don't really know much about the company or the products, but I'm anxious to do some more reading and perhaps give one a try.

Rick M
(rmjapan) - F

Locale: Tokyo, Japan
Re: UL Weather Protection for DSLRs on 02/25/2013 16:29:12 MST Print View

Doubt if I could use my dslr without seeing/reviewing the LCD monitor or top plate info. And with so many button, knobs and switches, the frustrations would be endless I think. I priced a kit for a Nikon D90 and 35mm lens $250 for a camera condom is not that cheap either.

Erica R.
(skrapp138) - M
Re: UL Weather Protection for DSLRs on 05/03/2013 09:21:41 MDT Print View

This is really interesting - I, too, have ben trying to research ways to bring my DSLR on the trail, and this housing is great. But I second the concern about not being able to see my controls/screen. I do like the idea of just having a chest harness and this, though - and not having to put it in my pack!

Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: Re: UL Weather Protection for DSLRs on 05/03/2013 14:47:15 MDT Print View

I don't see any practicality for the Outex system unless you are a surf photographer.

For a backpacker carrying a DSLR, what works well is this: a Lowepro holster on a shoulder strap.

There are quite a number of Lowepro holsters, so you have to find the one that fits your camera fitted with its long lens. On a shoulder strap, you can carry it over your right front pocket or your left front pocket, depending on whether you are righthanded or lefthanded. You probably do not want to carry in over the front, because you may need to see your feet to avoid stumbling on the trail.

The Lowepro holsters have a top flap that swings away, but it is fastened by a weatherproof zipper. That is slow. I added a Velcro strap for speed, and I use the zipper only during a stream crossing.

--B.G.--

Erica R.
(skrapp138) - M
Re: Re: Re: UL Weather Protection for DSLRs on 05/03/2013 15:10:41 MDT Print View

I actually purchased a lowerpro top loader with this purpose and found it put a strain on my neck/shoulder after a while. Have you encountered that - or have you found a way around it?

I also just purchased the harness to attach to the toploader - thinking I can carry my DSLR on my front. Put the harness on first - then the backpack on. The visibility to my feet doesn't seem to be poor - haven't had a chance to test this system out on the trail though. Have you tried a harness before?

Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: Re: Re: Re: UL Weather Protection for DSLRs on 05/03/2013 15:34:10 MDT Print View

E.R., there is no easy way around the strain problem except maybe to strengthen your neck muscles. I carry about 9-10 pounds of camera equipment, so I try to offload as much as I can into the backpack and then carry only what I need in the holster in order to get quick wildlife shots. Sometimes I move the shoulder pad strap side to side on my shoulder. I will do all sorts of things to avoid the necessity of stopping, taking off the backpack, move camera gear, then putting the backpack on again.

I've also tried some other brands, like Kata, and they are not nearly as protective as Lowepro. Basically, if I have two or three or four thousand bucks worth of camera gear hanging around my neck, I would like to keep the gear protected as much as is practical without impeding the readiness.

I tried harnesses starting about 15 years ago. They always seem like a good idea, but I always quit using them within an hour or two. I don't like to have my camera bouncing up and down on my chest.

--B.G.--

Nico .
(NickB) - MLife

Locale: Los Padres National Forest
UL Weather Protection for DSLRs on 05/03/2013 15:43:14 MDT Print View

FWIW, Outex has developed a rear port that provides visual access to the LCD and controls via a recent Kickstarter campaign; it should be available for purchase later this summer. They also offer numerous viewfinder options that mate through the cover to the viewfinder on your camera.

I wouldn't want to use it on a regular basis but for adventures in or around the water (packrafting, kayaking, snorkeling, swimming, etc.) or hikes and shooting in rainy/snowy weather, I think this is a viable option. It's certainly less heavy and awkward than a dedicated housing (been there, done that).

They offer a handful of different options to connect the camera + cover to a wrist strap, belt, chest harness, etc.

Of course, before someone could get along with a housing like this, they would need to have enough familiarity with their camera layout that they could find their controls without clear, obvious visual access to the shutter button, etc.

I could think I could live with the limitations of the design for the added range of conditions I could then shoot in.