Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Joby Gorillapod Focus / Ballhead X combo & BlackRapid RS-4 camera strap.

Joby Gorillapod Focus / Ballhead X combo  & BlackRapid RS-4 camera strap.

While on my recent trip to New York , I made my  First trip to B&H Photo.
When you buy  On-Line,  you never feel the need to actually visit the store.  But, because of all the raves on line / camera forums  … I had to put It on my must do’s on this trip.

The store is HUGE!    And the best  Camera/Photography store I have ever seen.   And as a X-Buyer I could not help doing some of the math on what their sales volume must be “just” on the IN-STORE sales.  If, you add up how many Salespeople (probably not all B&H) , Cashiers , stockpeople etc.  it takes a village to run that store.   And it is like a factory.  The sales volume at B&H must be scary.  And this is probably why there stock is  Fresh.
A side note:  I have never seen so much promotion in a store (all over the store)  for a  Camera  System (Nikon 1)  “quite like” what was in B&H.   Wall billboards , & Kiosk’s everywhere.   A  V1 and J1 on “each” of the 4 sides of the Nikon  bank.   They also did  a very “Costco” thing , by putting  some Nikon 1  Kiosks with salesperson in some locations where you would not expect.

So, while I was there … of course,  I  had to impulse buy something lol.

1)      Joby Gorillapod Focus with Ballhead X  $ 112 :

Have not bought a Gorillapod till now.  Love this one!   

A  PRO quality Gorillapod. This is a solid piece of Kit.

The “Gorillapod Focus” in Black/Gray is the first one I have seen that does not look like a toy. And is solid enough to hold a D700 with a 70-200mm f2.8 VRII  lens , this was a surprise to me! ( I mount directly on the rotating Lens mount) So, a 24-70 f2.8 is no problem.  You can put it on a table and it stands by itself.  You can put it on a rolled down window.  Or a  Rail or Pole.   Imho, a great  small Travel tripod, that you “could” use for product as well (more or less).   But, the cool thing for me is I can use it to mount my sb900 in some different places “easier”.  This dual ability makes it a keeper in my travel bag.

The Ballhead X is surprisingly Solid / Good  for the price, and would not have any problem also using it on a regular TriPod.   The quick release is a nice feature,  but what makes it GREAT is that you can use an RRS “L” bracket with it!  And a lot of other plates and Acc.  from others.  AND the head allows for 360 deg. Panning and has markings for it.   Wow!  Joby really thought this one out.

2)      Own the Blackrapid Double strap and love it. So, this purchase was a no brainer. BlackRapid RS-4 camera strap (single) $53.

Bought it because I only brought one camera D700 + 24-70mm f2.8 lens to NYC. This strap does have a Zip pocket for biz cards ,

and will hold the BR Joey J2 Pocket acc. $ 21
Fyi: this pocket is large enough to hold the large 4.5 inch Samsung Galaxy S II (without any case)

Used this BR RS-4 strap to walk around all over NYC  with the D700 + 24-70 f2.8 hanging from it , UNDER my  ¾  length Overcoat.   It really worked for me.  And was great for street shooting.

Hope this helps someone,

Ross Hamamura
The Tourist of Light