Photographer's Gift Guide: Adventure/Travel Photographers

We have put together 12 lists of recommended holiday gifts for the photographer in your life. Today's list is gifts for the adventure or travel photographer. Check back each day for the next list. Gear FirstLight 20LJoby SLR Zoom:   I do suggest you buy the ball head too unless you have one you can borrow from a different tripod. Joby Ball Head Abisko Lite Trousers 

Photography Gifts for the Stylish Photographer

Day Three of our Holiday Gift Guide for Photographers!

Ona Bags

Ona Bag BrixtonThe beautiful antique cognac Brixton Camera/Laptop Messenger Bag from ONA is designed to hold your DSLR with three lenses, a 13" laptop, and accessories. In addition, there's a rear open slip-pocket that's large enough for a 10" tablet. Movable interior dividers allow you to configure the bag to accommodate your gear. Dual front accessory pockets fit small, quick-access items such as lens caps, batteries, and a smartphone.Buy from B&H Photo $439  Shop all Ona Products from Ona 

Cecilia Gallery Straps

Cecilia Gallery Baby Alpaca Wool Camera StrapHand-woven from Peruvian wool and featuring full-grain Argentinian cowhide, the charcoal Baby Alpaca Wool Camera Strap from Cecilia Gallery features a wide 1.5" neck to comfortably hold a DSLR with an attached lens on adjustable black leather strap ends. Attaching to the side camera lugs, the durable strap ends are comprised of a triple layer build and are rated for a 250 pound resistance, allowing this strap to accommodate bigger and heavier lenses. This 52" long designer strap features Zamac hardware, which is a zinc-alloy held to higher industry standards.Buy from B&H Photo $90 

HoldFast Gear Money Maker Two-Camera Harness

HoldFast Gear Money Maker Two-Camera Harness (English Bridle, Chestnut, Small)The Money Maker Two-Camera Harness by HoldFast Gear is made of chestnut English Bridle leather and holds two cameras comfortably at your hips. The straps of the harness lie in an "X" pattern across your back for added support. The Speed Clutch mechanism allows the camera to slide along the harness to eye level easily.Buy from B&H Photo $215


Photography Gifts under $75

Day Two of our Holiday Gift Guide for Photographers!

Keyboard covers

kbcovers lightroom shortcutsThe KB Covers' Photoshop & Lightroom Keyboard Covers for MacBook, Air & Pro (Unibody, Black Keys) is a durable, ultra-thin silicone keyboard cover with custom editing buttons for a default keyboard layout in Adobe Photoshop or Adobe Lightroom. The cover allows you to improve your workflow by spending more time working on your project and less time memorizing the program shortcut keys.Buy from B&H Photo or direct from


triggertrap connection diagramCreate advanced triggering setups all from your smartphone or tablet with this Triggertrap Mobile Kit, Triggertrap allows users to quickly and easily connect their cameras to their smart phones or tables and via the FREE triggertrap app offers a variety of different sensor triggering options, such as sound and vibration, time lapse modes, HDR imaging capabilities, and standard cable release settings.Buy from B&H Photo $37

Ona Insert

Ona Bag Roma InsertThe Roma Camera Insert and Bag Organizer from Ona is a unique approach to organizing and carrying your gear. It fits inside many of today's medium-sized non-camera style bags. Designed to hold your DSLR with a lens and a few accessories like batteries, it's also made with five exterior pockets that will hold everything from pens, cell phone, wallet and passport.Buy from B&H Photo $69

Print gift certificates

Gift Cards for AdoramapixSpend any sum of money for a gift certificate to print products at Adoramapix and the photographer in your life will be happy - it is special to have your own photos on the wall and a gift certificate can be a big nudge in that direction. We love the quality, consistency and diversity of products at Adoramapix.Buy from Adoramapix $10-150

Peak Design Field Pouch

Peak Design Field PouchStore your small camera accessories or smaller Micro 4/3 camera systems in the Field Pouch from Peak Design. Further organize your gear by utilizing the interior slip pockets and take advantage of the attachment point for Peak Design's Capture Clip. Keep your pouch in your bigger bag, or use the seatbelt style belt loops to wear on your belt. You can also attach the pouch to any Peak Design strap (sold separately) turning it into a lightweight sling bag. The felt padding provides light protection from everyday use, while the weather-resistant waxed 500D Kodra shell helps safeguard your gear from a sudden change in weather.Buy from B&H PhotoLexar 64GB Professional 1000x UHS-II SDXC Memory Card Photographers can always use more space and this two pack of FAST cards from Lexar will satisfy nicely. Fast enough to handle higher bit rate 4K and nicelyBuy from B&H Photo $74.75

JOBY Gorillapod SLR Zoom

Joby Gorillapod SLR-Zoom Flexible Mini TripodUltralight but ultra useful  - the Gorillapod is a Flexible joint tripod you can wrap around fences, tree branches, etc.  This allows you to carry an extremely small tripod capable of any height you want- I recommend buying with the small ball head as this does give you additional flexibility in setup and use.Buy from B&H Photo

Westcott 5-in-1 Reflector Disc

Westcott 5-in-1 Reflector DiscThe Westcott 40.5" 5-in-1 Collapsible Reflector is versatile in the field and in the studio, providing shadow-lightening detail in your subject, using available, or studio lighting. It starts out as a translucent white disc -- perfect for softening direct sun, or lights without diffusion. Use the removable, reversible zippered slipcover to reflect light into shadow areas of your subject. Your choice of color -- silver, gold, white, black mix -- will be determined by the lighting conditions, and your personal preference.Buy from B&H Photo $39.90

Photography Gifts Under $150

We have put together 12 lists of recommended holiday gifts for the photographer in your life.   Today's list is gifts under $150.   Check back each day for the next list. 

Spider Camera Holster SpiderPro Hand Strap

Screenshot 2015-12-07 13.17.49 Screenshot 2015-12-07 13.17.55Extremely comfortable, form fitting and adds a bit of security to the gripBuy from B&H Photo $65.00 

Lume cube

Screenshot 2015-12-07 13.30.17 Really tiny cubes (about the size of a GoPro Session) that allows you to produce a constant beam of light or use as a flash/strobe.  Adjust the settings via the app or manual control on the light and waterproof to 100'Preorder from B&H Photo $79.99 

A Prime Lens

Almost every manufacturer offers a prime lens under $150.  If the photographer in your life doesn't have a prime lens this is a great gift that can help them get more creative and explore low light photography in a way not possible with slower kit lenses.Buy your prime lens from B&H Photo 

One year of Creative Cloud

Screenshot 2015-12-07 13.46.40A one year subscription to Lightroom and Photoshop is always a useful present- this always updated package provides all the software and power a photographer needs to post process their images.Buy Direct / Download Card from B&H Photo

External Drives from WD

Keep your photos safe and backed up - external storage is cheap! We love these smaller, travel friendly drives or the larger 4TB desktop drive- all for under $150WD 2TB Elements Portable Hard Drive WD 2TB Elements Portable Hard Drive $76.99WD 4TB Elements External Desktop Hard Disk DriveWD 4TB Elements External Desktop Hard Disk Drive $109.99 

Fujifilm instax 210 Instant Film Camera

Fujifilm instax 210 Instant Film Camera If you got a friend who's not super serious about photography but still enjoy taking pictures or casually taking pictures, the Fujifilm instax cameras are a great choice.  The Instax 210 is great for general photography and includes a close-up attachment.Buy from B&H Photo $72.85

MeFOTO BackPacker Travel Tripod

we travel often and the very portable MeFoto BackPacker Travel tripod has done everywhere with.  Folding down to just 12.6" and weighing only 2.2lbs - small enough to be tossed into all of our camera bags.  I first reviewed this tripod in 2013 and despite my rough handling- and an unfortunate canoe incident where it spent 3 days under water - it continues to work well!MeFOTO BackPacker Travel TripodBuy from B&H Photo $144.99 We will be back tomorrow with our next gift list and for the next 11 days!  Stay tuned.

Cleaning your DSLR or Mirrorless Sensor

Disclaimer- Cleaning your sensor isn't risky but does carry risks. If you damage your sensor while cleaning it is not going to be covered by your camera manufacturer's warranty and the only official cleaning method recommended by the camera manufacturers is to send in the camera for cleaning. The information I present in this post and video is based on my own experience, by following, you accept complete liability for any damages that may result.Let’s talk about dirty sensors. It happens, it’s not a big deal.Dirty SensorsDust on the sensor typically doesn’t show up unless you are shooting at smaller apertures. Bigger bits might show up starting around f/8, but it is really above f/14 and up to f/22 where you see the dust. If you are shooting lots of landscapes, this can be an issue. If you are shooting lots of portraits, with apertures below f/5.6 you can stop reading and go back to enjoying life. It is unlikely you will see any dust impact your image.f/22 - can you spot the dust and HAIR!!! Embarrassing. The first step in cleaning is to determine how dirty your sensor is. A quick way to test is to take a picture of a clean white piece of paper at f/8, f/14 and f/22 - don’t worry about your shutter speed - the dust spots will be sharp even if you shoot at slow shutter speeds, but you do want to keep your ISO fairly low to avoid noise confusing the issue. You could also photograph the sky on a clear day.Now pop that image in Lightroom and in the develop module there is a nifty option to Visual Spots located under the Spot removal tool.  Need Lightroom?Screenshot_9_8_15__8_43_AMScreenshot 2015-09-08 08.42.33Rollover the image below to see the before and after Visual Spots with my Sony a7RII sensor at f/22[himage]Dirty SensorDirty Sensor[/himage]If your sensor looks like Sony a7RII sensor does after just a few weeks of use - you probably want to clean it.Many DSLRS and Mirrorless cameras have a sensor cleaning mode - some run every time you turn the camera on or off and some run when selected. This is the first option you should try. With many of the systems, it is recommended to either hold the camera normally or facedown with the lens off so that the dust falls out. The Sony A7RII I have violently vibrates the sensor for a second or two and did absolutely nothing to reduce the amount of dust on the sensor. Hopefully you will have better results. Test again after using the in camera method.CleanSensorGif_animThe next step is to use a rocket blower - NEVER use compressed air or air in a can dust off products. Again hold the camera in such a way that the dust will fall out and give a few puffs directed at different areas of the sensor. They do sell sensor loupes - little magnifiers with led lights that make it easier to judge your progress. I used a tiny LED bike light to help see the sensor but it is clear that a bit of magnification will help too as some of these dust specks are invisible to the naked eye.$17 Sensor Magnification and LED light Sensor Loupe LED Magnification$9.95 Rocket BlowerRocket Blowers are cheap and do a great job of cleaning your sensor.Buy Rocket Blower from Amazon | B&H Photo VideoI was impressed with the results of the rocket blower- it did a good enough job that I would be happy stopping there - but if you want to get your sensor even cleaner you are going to need to touch it with something.Please read and follow all directions carefully for the kit you purchase and consult your camera manual for additional information.You have options - there are the expensive static charged brushes like the Arctic butterfly (see it at B&H) for $130 - you drag a statically charged brush across the sensor and it picks up the dust. In theory this should work fairly well with all but the stickiest particles and you never need to replace any pads etc but your up front cost are quite high. It does have two nice, bright LEDs to see what you are doing.butterflybrushOr you can go with something like the DustAid Platinum DSLR Sensor Cleaner for $26 that provides 6 cleanings - you get these little sticky pads that you gently press on the sensor, the dust sticks to the pad and then you use included “tape” to clean the pad.Dust Aid Platinum - Sticky lollipop for your sensorOr a more traditional kit like this DustAid Dust Wand Kit for $30 - Should provide about 20-40 cleanings depending on your sensor which is what I used in the video. You simply take one of the dust cloths out, wrap it carefully around the wand and apply a few drops of their cleaning solution- The larger your sensor the more drops you apply.Dust Wand Kit ReviewIf you are working with a DSLR you do need to put it into manual cleaning mode which pops the mirror out of the way. The dust aid directions suggest starting in the lower left corner and moving across the sensor. Put a new cloth on and repeat the process from the top left to the right again. Use your light and or loupe to inspect and if necessary wipe again with a clean cloth. Note that the special liquid evaporates fast so you should wipe immediately after applying.I hope this video was helpful. Do you have a favorite sensor cleaning method? leave your suggestions below and if you have any questions - you can leave those too. I’d love it if you hit that subscribe button - that way you can be notified of future videos, tips, tricks and reviews.Follow me on Instagram to see more of what I am up to day to day and all my dirty sensor photos.Make sure you don't miss a future video, subscribe to my Youtube ChannelLearn Lightroom 

ONA Bag Brixton - Style without Sacrifice

ONA Bag Brixton here with a review of  the ONA Brixton shoulder bag retailing at $439. My favorite thing about this bag is just how beautiful it is and how well it fits with my personal style. The antique cognac leather finish is extremely versatile in just about any situation. It has two brass buckles that provide easy access to your gear and whenever I want to use it as a lens exchanger, I simply leave the flap open to grab a lens quickly.When I’m out exploring and when I’m on a shoot, it blends in well and makes me feel pretty inconspicuous about the fact that I’m there to shoot - this works well for the my style of photography.ONA Bag InteriorBesides being a pretty bag, it’s also extremely well-made and functional. At roughly 10 by 13 inches it allows me to fit at least one camera body with a lens, plus three additional lenses and it has two huge pockets at the front that let me toss whatever I need to put away at any given moment. I particularly appreciate this because I’m often taking off lens caps and carrying clients’ things for them and it’s super helpful to be able to not have to look through tons of different pockets to find a place for things. It’s extremely well-padded, too so my gear feels well protected.It’s really comfortable - leather goods have the added benefit of molding to your body the more you use them and this bag already feels broken in after a couple of months.ONA shoulder padThere are a couple of things I wish were different about the ONA Brixton bag - The first is that it is heavier than other fabric/nylon camera bags I’ve used in the past, especially when it’s full of stuff.My other complaint is that the strap is a little bit long for my small frame. I’m petite at five foot one and I can’t seem to get the strap to be short enough for me to comfortably grab something while the bag is hanging off my shoulder and if I did shorten the strap further, it would move the shoulder pad off center and my shoulder would hit the metal buckle. I think I could be better off with the Prince Street, a smaller version of this bag, but I love the ability to put my 13” laptop in it and the Prince Street only has room for 11" and smaller laptops. If you’re at least 5' 4" though, don’t worry, you shouldn’t run into this problem.So to wrap up this short review, It’s safe to say that it’s become my everywhere bag. I’ve taken it on day trips, long-distance trips, and wedding and portrait shoots and I love it. Style is as important to me as function and this bag certainly checks both of those boxes and if this particular bag isn’t for you, ONA has a huge selection of other great bags to meet your needs.Upsides to the ONA Brixton

  • Exceptionally well made
  • Perfect amount of pockets - not too many you end up searching for stuff but still enough to keep organized
  • Gear is well padded and protected
  • Looks better every day

Downsides to the ONA Brixton

  • Shorter than 5' 4" and you may find the bag hangs a little too low.
  • Heavy

ONA Bag Brixton in action Shop ONA BagsONA was kind enough to provide us with this bag for review, this is not a paid endorsement and the opinions on this video and post are our own.

Stand out from the crowd - ThinkTank Flair

Ever gone to grab your bag at the airport or been on a photo tour and realized your bag looked JUST like all the other bags?  ThinkTank has the solution.Roller Flare ThinkTank Roller Flare ThinkTankCustomize your Think Tank Photo Roller with your choice red, green, orange, or blue wheels, zipper pulls and padded handle wrap. Make your bag stand out or match your favorite colors. Each Roller Flair kit includes the following color-matched items: two wheels; 10 Easy Grip Zipper Pulls; one padded Handle Wrap; and, the Installation Guide. Think Tank is known for having the best wheels. They use a custom rubber compound for smooth, quiet rolling while also putting an emphasis on longevity. Think Tank only uses ABEC-5 sealed bearings to ensure smooth rolling even after years of hard use. And Free shipping on all orders!Check it out at ThinkTank 

Variable ND Filter vs Non-Variable ND Genustech variable neutral density filter or fader lets you easily control the amount of light entering your camera. With a twist of the ring, you can reduce the light from 2 to 8 stops. This can be useful if you want to shoot at slower shutter speeds during the day- like a waterfall, ocean or crowded street or if you are shooting video and want to keep your shutter speed around 1/50 of a second and control your depth of field both lending to a more cinematic look.[himage]02_1-15 sec at f - 2201_25.0 sec at f - 22[/himage]Rollover to see the longer shutter speeds possible with an ND filterThe filter is a glass and aluminum construction, very well made with smooth rotation and the optical quality is excellent. Clear markings on the filter ring indicate the strength of the filter. I have been using the 82mm size for my 24-70 f/2.8 lens. You can stack additional filters with the front threads accepting 86mm filter size - larger to avoid vignette. One downside to the larger size, your lens hoods and lens caps no longer fit. They do offer additional sizes down to 52mm. B&H has the full list of sizes.So this sounds great - one affordable high-quality filter that gives you great versatility in the amount of light you block. There is a drawback and this is true of all variable filters, at certain strengths you can get a very noticeable X pattern in the sky. This makes these filters unusable in some situations.[himage]01_30.0 sec at f - 18I drew the white lines (in case that wasn't clear)[/himage][himage]02_15.0 sec at f - 18I drew the white lines (in case that wasn't clear)[/himage]The alternative is a non-variable ND filter which comes in various strengths. I generally recommend 3 or 6 stop for photographers looking to use in a variety of situations. You can stack ND filters though if you really want the ability to stack you should consider something like the LEE system which has very versatile setups. I have a link below to recommended sizes and strengths and will be talking about the Lee system after my Iceland trip.Recommended 3-stop filters (also labeled ND8 and 0.9)These will allow you to block 3 stops of light i.e 1/250 of a second to 1/30Budget: Tiffen 0.9 ND Filter (link to 77mm, make sure you purchase the correct size for your lenses)Premium: B+W 77mm 0.9 ND 103 FilterRecommended 6-stop filters (also labeled ND64 and 1.8)These will allow you to block 6 stops of light i.e 1/250 of a second to 1/4 of a second.Budget: Hoya 77mm Pro 1 Digital Neutral Density 64x Filter (link to 77mm, make sure you purchase the correct size for your lenses)Premium: B+W 77mm 1.8 ND MRC 106M FilterIf you want seriously long exposures in the middle of the day- the BIG STOPPER 10-stop ND filter is best.B+W 77mm 3.0 ND MRC 110M FilterAnd if you want control without using a variable - the Lee or Hitech filters are the way to go. They offer stacking and provide an easy way adjust graduated ND filters.More about the Lee Filter System at B&H Photo VideoBuy the Genustech Variable ND Filter from B&H Photo VideoScantips has an easy calculator to determine differences in stops. 

Don't be a LAZY photographer

Many photographers want ND filters to get those more dreamy looking waterfalls or smooth water beach photos and if you find yourself at your location and you still can’t get long enough shutter speeds to get the look you desired you are probably being lazy and trying to photograph during the middle of the day when you have massive amount of light and the quality of the light is harsh and flat. Don’t be lazy - get up earlier when the light levels are lower and the quality is softer and more directional. Or just stay out till evening. For many years, I photographed loads of longer exposure waterfall photos without an ND filter.Learn more about circular polarizers - sometimes useful as an ND filter too.

New Canon Flash: Speedlite 430EX III-RT

Canon has announced a new flash, an updated version of their 430EX. The big change? The inclusion of Radio Transmission (RT) for wireless off camera firing.  Previously with flashes other than the expensive 600RT wireless meant optical only which isn't always the most reliable.Shop Canon 430EX III RT from B&H Photo fro $299

Canon 430 EX III RT Flash Canon 430 EX III RT Flash

More about wireless - Canon and other manufacturers use the term wireless flash to indicate a flash or system that can be triggered or fired without any wires. The Canon T5i, T6i/s and 70D cameras with their built in flash are capable of wirelessly triggering an external flash- this is done by firing the on board flash - an optical trigger, not wireless as we usually think about WiFi and other wireless communication.  I demonstrate how it all works and the setup here to Optical Wireless control? In sunny conditions it can be un reliable and you do need a pre-flash that in some, albeit rare, circumstances will impact your exposure.   You are also limited in your control of the external flash as the communication is only one way - camera to flash. In 2012 Canon announced the 600RT flashes, these pro level flashes include Radio Transmitters that allow for remote triggering without needing that optical flash - this also provides additional control over remote flashes, in fact you have complete control as if the flash was sitting directly on your camera, if you are using a compatible transmitter or another external flash.   The 430EX RT is now a more budget friendly model of the 600RT with many of the same features. See the chart below for more details.

Specs: Canon 600RT

Canon 600 RT

Canon 430 EX RT Flash

Canon 430 EX III RT

Power: Guide No (ISO 100):

196.9' / 60m (at 200mm)


141' / 43m (at 105mm)

Wireless Flash Transmitter (Flash Master)



Zoom Range:



Weather Sealing



Head rotation


180° LEFT / 90° RIGHT


$499 (Buy from B&H Photo)

$299 (Buy from B&H Photo)

A third option I am testing/reviewing right now is the Yongnuo 600 RT, basically a clone of the Canon 600RT but with a price of just $124 - Learn more at B&H Photo. While I have not finished my complete review I am impressed with the feature set of the Yongnuo and really only see slight differences in build quality that does not affect overall performance.  For my money I would buy the Yongnuo - Full review coming. Subscribe to my Youtube channel to be notified.Yongnuo 600RT

New Bags from ThinkTank - Trifecta Series 8, 10

Trifecta-8-Mirrorless-Backpack-1 Trifecta-10-DSLR-Backpack-1

Our friends at Think Tank Photo have just released two new backpacks designed to allow you three different ways to get at your three “workhorse” lenses.  The Trifecta 10 is designed for DSLR systems, and the Trifecta 8 is designed for mirrorless systems. These innovative backpacks sling for side access from both the left and right. They are the perfect carrying solution for when you are on the move and don’t want to have to take off your backpack to access your gear. The rear panel opening offers complete access to gear.  And don’t forget that when you use my link you receive free gear with your order as well as free shipping.Trifecta lowresShop Trifecta Series and All ThinkTank Bags at ThinkTank or Buy from B&H Photo Video

Feisol Tripod CT-3442 and CB-50 Head I appreciate about this Tripod-

  • Extremely lightweight
  • Stable with flexibility in setup
  • High quality
    • Leg locks are smooth and require only a slight rotation to lock
    • Foam padding integrated with legs
    • Large well made CF legs
  • Smooth rotation in ball head - very fluid

My one complaint is using other Arca-swiss style compatible plates - you must make sure you full press the safety catch to full engage the plate.Tripod Specs: 

  • Max Height: 54.33 inch (141cm)
  • Min Height: 77.10 inch (18cm)
  • Folded Length: 18.9 inch (48cm)
  • Weight: 2.49lb (1.13kg) without head
  • Max Load 22lb (10kg)

Learn more about the Feisol CT-3442Buy from B&HThe head used in the review

Mobile Storage and Backup

Card Full

Troy H asks: Other than a laptop, is there a device that lets me upload raw files from my camera's SD card for a straight backup or offload—maybe a hard drive with SD slot? I need something for travel and don't want to rely on having only my original photos on SD cards.

We produce hundreds, sometimes thousands, of photos and while SD cards are nice for temporary storage we need a bit more space to store them if on vacation or working. Compared to a few years ago where your options were bringing more memory cards with you or a laptop to offload photos there are a few new devices. While conceivably you could pick up a 512GB SD card (Amazon) and have plenty of storage for a nice long trip these are backing up your photos as well. Just think what would happen if on day 8 of your trip you lost that one giant  SD card?So why not just use an Apple iPad lightning card reader (B&H) at this point with an iPad? Well, you could, for a few photos but unless you paid for the tablet with more storage you're only going to backup a few choice photos considering the iPad is filled with other things as well. Having a wireless storage solution allows you to access the files with a phone or tablet without filling their storage to capacity.For our uses, the drives can still be edited on a laptop but being wireless you have the ability to access them on a phone or tablet. The drive apps won’t be able to preview the RAW files but once transferred to a program such as Snapseed you can edit freely on a mobile device. Shooting raw+jpeg can also be helpful as it allows previewing files natively in the drive app.Snapseed - Download for Android or iOSEach device can connect to multiple devices so as a bit of a side benefit on vacation this allows movies with kids in the car via tablets or sharing files in an office. Additionally being a small router of sorts they can all connect to a WiFi to share a connection. While the battery life is limited a RAVpower battery can extend the run time of the drives.

Size, Cost, and Convenience

Sandisk Connect Flash Drive and Media DriveSandisk Connect Wireless Flash DriveIf you've got a smartphone and you just need to back up a SD card worth of photos you could get the Sandisk Connect. Out of the devices in this article, it is the smallest device with a thumb drive sized profile for easy storage. The flash drive, using swappable microSD for storage, the max you can push it to with one card is currently 128GB but Sandisk does have a 200GB microSD card coming soon. The media drive, unfortunately, has internal storage that is fixed. Sandisk Connect Media DriveBattery life for the connect flash drive comes in at 4 hours while the media drive can run for 8.

  • Good
    • Small design profile
    • MicroSD and Internal storage is a bit more durable than a hard drive
    • Cheapest All-in-One setup available
    • Swappable storage in the Connect flash drive allows for more space on multiple MicroSD cards
  • Bad
    • Not IOS 8 friendly, software has issues with unknown file types that don’t have a specific app to send the file as well as DRM issues with video preventing playback
    • Requires smartphone to initiate transfer
    • Slowest transfer of options available due to transferring from SD to MicroSD
    • Highest cost ratio of memory for your money due to MicroSD
    • USB 2.0 connection slow for editing files on drive via laptop
    • Worst software of the drives here
Sandisk Connect Flash Drive:
16GB Amazon | B&H 32GB Amazon | B&H 64GB Amazon | B&H
Sandisk Connect Media Drive:
32GB Amazon | B&H 64GB Amazon | B&H

 Kingston MobileLite Wireless G2MobileLite Wireless G2 usage image_MLWG2_SDA10_22_05_2014 19_29A glorified router with a battery and SD card reader. Compared to the All-in-One devices this is bring-your-own-storage which gigabyte per dollar is the lowest cost option and you can use external drives (limit 2TB) or flash drives you have already. It is a bit less portable than the SanDisk Connect in the same respect though due to then having to carry two devices. Being a dedicated router it has an ethernet port for the option to share a hotel connection through wireless. Battery life for the MobileLite is up to 13 hours.

  • Good
    • Lowest cost wireless drive option
    • Uses your existing storage if you already have an external drive or flash drive
    • Doubles as card reader for a laptop, albeit USB 2.0
    • Can charge other devices with its battery like a RAVpower battery
    • Built in Ethernet for sharing wifi, handy in hotel situations
  • Bad
    • Requires smartphone to initiate transfer
    • Bulky as it requires more than one device
Kingston MobileLite Wireless G2
Amazon | B&H

WD My Passport WirelessWD My Passport WirelessThe My Passport could be seen as the most convenient, it’s best of both the options above if you don’t already have external drives for the Kingston. Yes, WD My Passport has a wireless version with an SD card slot and provides transfer while you go with automatic import when you put in a card. Comes with USB 3.0 so if you've got a PC with it you can edit files on the drive. On its own the main complaint is speed, it is painfully slow at transferring photos. The My Passport Wireless battery life is 6 hours of continuous use or up to 20 hours in standby.

  • Good
    • Automatic import, does not require smartphone
    • Faster transfer rates for full SD cards, 15 minutes for 16GB
    • USB 3.0 for editing photos on drive
    • Hard drive is replaceable if it dies, swappable with a slight bit of DIY
    • Best software of the drives here
  • Bad
    • Expensive in terms of gigabyte per dollar
    • Overall much fatter than a standard external drive and less durable than the Connect above
    • Needs updating out of the box as the initial software release had issues
WD My Passport Wireless
1TB: Amazon | B&H 2TB: Amazon | B&H
Final Thoughts

Even getting the 16gb Sandisk flash drive and upgrading to a 128GB microSD card I would be a bit wary of their software as it's overly complicated. Not to forget that the price of a 128GB microSD card not on sale is higher than picking up a 2TB hard drive. The Kingston MobileLite Wireless G2 is the best combination of price and function. Unfortunately a bit clunky to carry considering you would have to rubberband an external drive to it. If you're starting from scratch and do not have an external drive the My Passport Wireless has the best software and All-in-One design. Its price compared to other WD drives basically puts it at $100 for wireless setup with a standard external drive making it a bit expensive. Overall in function, the My Passport Wireless is the best choice in terms of features but if you already have an external drive then go with the MobileLiteWireless G2 as it is a bargain at its current price.

Eye-Fi Mobi Pro - Wireless RAW transfer

I have reviewed and generally been a fan of Eye-fi cards in the past. These are little SD cards that include WiFI capabilities along with modest storage. Last November I shared my setup of their Pro X2 cards for use in 7D Mark II, a camera sadly lacking in any WiFi capabilities.  My review of the mobi was less positive. With the mobi every photo you took transferred and for anyone taking more than a few photos this was a serious drain on battery life and something I found unnecessary. I continued to use the Pro X2 cards that required a more complicated setup allowed me easy selective transfer.   The newest card in the line up seems to marry the features of the Pro line with the ease of setup of the mobi line.Eye-Fi Mobi PROWhat does the Mobi Pro offer:

  • Cloud-connected WiFi SD card - includes 1yr Eyefi Cloud membership with unlimited photo storage
  • Transfer photos to smartphone, tablet, PC or Mac as you take them
  • Transfer both RAW, JPEG and video wirelessly at home or on-the-go.
  • Selective Transfer
  • Send RAW files to your desktop for post-processing with tools like Adobe Lightroom.

Why choose the Mobi SD card over your camera's built in Wifi?

  • RAW Transfer to desktop - This is something I get asked about frequently and few cameras offer image transfer to desktop computers and RAW transfer is even more rare.

[yop_poll id="2"]Leave a comment if you want to share a thought or different answer on the wifi in our cameras poll. Interested?  eyefi mobiPro 32GB + WifiBuy from B&H PHoto or Amazon for $99 for 32GB.

Most Popular Videos of 2014 #9 - Nikon's Wifi Dongle

This is a post in my series looking back at 2014, what videos were popular, why?  Hopefully sparking some interesting discussions about changes in technology and the focus of my viewers.#9 in the series is a 7 minute video showing the Wifi Dongle for Nikon's D7100, D5200, D3200, D3300 in action. Based on recent comments, even though Nikon now releases their DSLRs with built in Wifi there is still strong interest in this little $40 device.Do I still have mine? No - sold it for cheap to a viewer.Date Published: Feb 3, 2014Review and How-to with the Nikon Wireless Adapter.Compatible with the following Camera Models Nikon Df, Nikon 1 S2, COOLPIX P530, D3300, COOLPIX P7800, COOLPIX P330, COOLPIX A, D7100, COOLPIX P520, D5200, D3200Nikon WU-a Wireless AdapterBuy the Wireless Adapter on B&H Photo | Amazon $49.99 #10 in the series 

$9.99 for Photoshop/Lightroom - Announcements from Adobe.

A handful of big photo announcements came out of Adobe's presentation on Wednesday. - See all my Adobe related announcement updates yesterday

    1. Lightroom mobile is now available on iPhones (as well as iPads) and allows editing, star rating and flagging of your Lightroom Catalog. Any changes you make to images on any device- phone, tablet, desktop- are synced to all other devices.  I have previously demoed the Lightroom mobile editing. No word or mention of any Android development for these apps.Screenshot 2014-06-18 14.11.44
    2. The $9.99/mo deal is here to stay - You get Photoshop and Lightroom CC - which means as updates happen you get them, along with 2GB of online storage (this is down from the 20GB offered in the more expensive packages) If you are currently paying for the more expensive plan you can downgrade at no penalty.Screenshot 2014-06-19 08.21.46
    3. The focus masking features which we talked about in last week's podcast looks nifty and useful.Screenshot 2014-06-18 13.44.11
    4. Adobe has released a new app for the iPad - Photoshop Mix. Call it an image manipulation tool, not quite an editor though it does offer some neat compositing and layer like abilities.  It is free and is capable of syncing with Lightroom collections as well as your camera roll.  Get Photoshop Mix from iTunes

    Photo Jun 19, 8 38 03 AMPhoto Jun 19, 8 39 54 AM

    Metabones EF to E Mount Adapter

    Video review of the Metabones EF to E Mount Adapter used with Sony a7

    Metabones EF to E Mount PROS:

    • Auto focus, aperture control and full lens to camera communication for complete EXIF info
    • Powered by camera body. No external power source required.
    • Lenses with image stabilization still work.
    • Wide open button (opposite of depth-of-field preview function) makes manual focusing easy.
    • Tripod mount
    • True electronic integration of aperture diaphragm - let camera automatically choose aperture in P or S exposure modes, or dial in yourself on the camera body in A or M modes.

    Metabones EF to E Mount CONS:

    • Autofocus is slow and sometimes confused
    • Cost is $399

    Images taken with Metabones EF to E Mount and various Canon lenses:

    DSLR Audio Options - Shotgun mic vs Lav mic vs more

    You want to look good and SOUND good when making videos. Learn from my experience (and mistakes) and spend money on the type of device that is going to work best for you. Links and mini review of each device below. Audio-Technica ATR-3350 Lavalier Omnidirectional Condenser Microphone | Buy from B&H $2220' of wired cable connects a small lav mic with a standard mono plug. Powered by a small LR44 watch battery. The long wire is great and gives you plenty of flexibility to setup but also gets amazingly tangled often and there is no battery life indicator. I suggest you always carry spare LR44 (buy from Amazon). Quality is decent but you do need to do a little post processing to remove the hiss present.Shure VP83F LensHopper Camera-Mounted Condenser Microphone with Integrated Flash Recording | Buy from B&H $299Lovely sound from this shotgun mic that offers headphone monitoring, audio out(to DSLR) and independent recording to microSD card. Mount in hotshoe or on a tripod. Great battery life and LCD screen display with battery indicator, recording time and more. Don't need the microSD card recording or the LCD display? Go for their cheaper Shure VP83 for $189.  An additional budget shotgun option is the Rode VMGO for $99.Zoom H4N Handy Portable Digital Recorder $270Feature rich with integrated stereo mics and two XLR ports that are powered. Tripod mount on bottom. Records to standard SD cards. When Phantom power is on battery life isn't great - good rechargeables will last just a few hours. With Phantom power off you get a few more hours. You are able to record with internal mics and externally attached mics. Headphone monitoring or record directly into a DSLR with the line out.UPDATE: The Zoom H6 is better for spoken word capture - Buy it from B&H $399Shure SM93 XLR Lavalier Mic | Buy from B&H $135So how does a lav mic that cost $100 more than the Audio-Technica sound AND needs an XLR input which will cost more? Very good. Very, Very good. Sound is full and rich with no hiss or any issues that need to be removed in post. With careful placement the isolating capabilities of this mic are excellent.On camera audio - Can actually be quite useable in some situations(indoors in quiet room. Want to hear how a few Canon cameras sounds? Watch my 70D vs 6D video - I have a short section in there where the audio from each is compared.

    MeFoto vs Dolica Ultra Compact Travel Tripods Reviewed

    They both weight about 2.5 lbs, fold down to 12.5" and have little ball heads. They also both have hooks under center column for hanging weight to increase stability. Neither tripod is extremely stable at it's very highest setting, something I am willing to sacrifice since the tripods fit in my camera bag so nicely.Tune in to tomorrow's MishMash Podcast for details on how you could win the Dolica Proline

    Pros for the Dolica TX570B150SL Ultra Compact Tripod

    • Cheaper
    • Reversible center column - close to ground macro shots
    • Removable/replaceable head
    • Three legs spread settings- MeFoto has two settings
    • Taller - 57" versus 51" on the MeFoto

    Pros for the MeFoto Travel Tripod Kit

    • Excellent head - not removable but very well made with smooth panning and locks down tight.
    • Comes in different colors?
    • Built to last- I have used mine for 18 months now and everything is working like the day I bought it. No wear and tear.

    Original Full MeFoto ReviewNote - MeFoto also offers the RoadTrip model for $189 that has a removable center column, also converts into a monopod - Buy from AmazonI am happy with my MeFoto and feel the extra money was well spent for as much as I use it.  If just an occasional user you should consider the Dolica and save.  If you don't need a travel or compact tripod consider the excellent budget tripod. Watch my review of the Dolica Proline Tripod.Support this site and my reviews- Buy the MeFoto Travel Tripod from Amazon | Buy the Dolica Ultra Compact Tripod from Amazon   

    Yongnuo Flashes- Making sense of the 468 II, 568 II, 565

    If you just want to stick a cheap flash on your camera and have it work well- the YN 468-II is the flash for you.  Currently selling for less than $90. Canon Compatible 468 II | Nikon Compatible 468 II Note - your camera model may not be listed on the page but it will work with your camera if you buy the right brand and you have a DSLR made by that company in the last 10 years. 

    YongNuo YN-468 II Speedlite With LCD Display E-TTL(Canon) or i-TTL(nikon)

    YN468 This is the cheapest Yongnuo flash that does E-TTL/iTTL - this means the camera and the flash can talk to each other and the flash will adjust the output of light to create a proper exposure.  This is the easiest and most painless way to greatly improve your indoor photography.   Additional features include Manual mode with power adjustment from full 1/1 to 1/128 in 1/3 step increments.  Multi strobe mode  fires a series of flashes in one exposure (Example coming), Slave modes in S1 and S2. As far as I can tell the only difference between S1 and S2 - in S2 mode the Yongnuo will not be triggered by the test flash. Slave mode allows you to fire the flash when it is not attached to the camera.  You will need a camera that has wireless flash capabilities.  As I said in the opening this is the best value for generally better flash photos. Rotate the head over one should and point it up about 45 degrees - the room will be filled with pleasing light and your photos will look better.   You can manually zoom this flash from 24-85 or if you believe the camera settings 24-105.  And the flash does allow high-speed sync(I will explain this soon - it is useful for shooting outside in bright light or shooting higher speed action).Buy from Amazon Canon Compatible 468 II | Nikon Compatible 468 II

    Yongnuo YN-565 EX TTL Flash Speedlite

    YN565EX What does $20 more get you over the 468 II?  Slightly faster recycle time and the ability to power the flash from an external battery pack and wireless TTL - So the 565-EX is able to communicate with the camera when it is off or on the camera.  It does lack high speed sync.  I see more folks reporting problems with this flash versus the 468 II. It may be that they expect more or use the flash harder?  Still the reviews are generally positive.  The back of the 565 has more buttons and larger LCD screen.  The comparable Canon flash is the Canon 580EX which costs roughly $400.   Pretty significant difference.   Would I walk into a professional shoot using this as my only flash- it is unlikely. I think these flashes are great for personal use, family functions and I would certainly bring along one or two as backup but there are just enough reviews that say they can be quirky that it makes me hesitate to recommend for professional use.  In working with the 468-II idid have it freeze up on me once. In fairness I have used the 600RTs and had issues - no flash or product is 100% fail safe but the level of quirkiness is just high enough that it makes me hesitate.Buy from Amazon Canon Compatible 565 EX | Nikon Compatible 565 EX

    Yongnuo YN-568EX II

    YN568II These flashes cost $180 - The extra $100 over the price of the 468s gets you a flash that is powerful and capable of controlling other flashes along with very high speed sync  - up to 1/8000 of a second.   Reviews are less positive but still generally good, leading me to believe my theory of higher end flashes used by professionals that expect more.  And it comes with a diffuser cap and the head does rotate 180 degrees (this is actually quite beneficial and I mention this in my long video review)Buy from Amazon Canon Compatible 568EX II | Nikon Compatible 568 EX


    Yongnuo RF-603C

    RF-603C These are not flashes! These are wireless triggers that are capable of firing an off camera flash without using the on-board flash of the camera.  Watch my video discussing and showing how to use the RF-603C triggers.  Range is reported to be reliable up to 100 meters. These are manual only- you do not get ETTL or any wireless control of the off camera flash.  They are also capable of remotely triggering your camera. That is what the small cord is for in the photo. Be careful to buy the right set if you want to use it as a remote. For actually flash firing you only need brand to match. Price ~$30.  Watch my video discussing RF-603C and then Buy from Amazon Canon Rebel Series(t4i, t5i) including 60D/70D | Canon XD series and older 50D/40D etc | Nikon D3XXX, D5XXX, D7XXX series

    Yongnuo YN-622C

     Screenshot 2014-08-29 12.37.27 These offer wireless control - Smart control of external flashes. Throw one on your camera and plug the flash into the receiver and you have the ability to control the flash as if it were sitting on top of your camera. I have these in hand and will be doing a complete review soon. Buy Yongnuo YN-622 from Amazon

     B&H Now carries Yongnuo Products and has a nice page listing ALL Yongnuo flashes, lenses and flash triggers. See Yongnuo on B&H Photo Video