One of the key questions I ask myself when trying out a camera strap for the first time, besides the obvious question of whether or not it’s comfortable, is: just how easy is it to attach and remove?
Though the benefit of being able to quickly attach and detach a camera strap is more applicable reviewers such as ourselves who constantly switch between new camera models, we certainly aren’t the only ones who see it as a desirable feature.
All you have to do is think about those times you want to pack your camera away inside a bag or use it on a tripod, and it becomes evident that it isn’t always convenient to have a strap attached to your camera body.
Unfortunately, most strap companies still seem to embrace the standard metal rings, even though you virtually have to tear your fingernails apart to pry them open. One exception is Peak Design and its groundbreaking Anchor Link system, and another is CustomSLR, whose newest strap we’ll be talking about today.
What is the Slim Strap?
The Slim Strap is an innovative product “designed for mirrorless, micro four-thirds, and compact cameras.” It was recently funded on Kickstarter for over $22,000, making it CustomSLR’s sixth successful crowd funded project.
Having used the strap for nearly three weeks now with a plethora of mirrorless bodies, I can say that it has become one of my favourite products for small to medium sized mirrorless cameras. It is comfortable, easy to adjust, straightforward and affordable.
In fact, I’d place the Slim Strap right alongside the Peak Design Leash and Slide as one of the top straps I’d recommend to mirrorless users.
What I like about the Slim Strap
As you’ll have gathered from the introduction, the first thing I like about the Slim Strap is that it solves the age-old attachment/removal problem with its quick-release Duraflex buckles and micro-loops.
To attach the strap to your camera, simply follow these steps:
- Release the buckles on either end of the strap so that it is divided into three parts;
- Thread the micro-loops through your camera’s strap mount;
- Reattach the buckles and voila, you’re good to go!
The idea of using micro-loops may not instil much confidence at first but they are tightly woven into the leather accents at either end of the strap and seem very robust. The buckles, too, are well-made and durable. Of course, I will be interested to see whether its robustness stands the test of time!
The quick-release system isn’t the only appealing feature of the Slim Strap.
In addition to being made of lightweight seatbelt grade webbing, it also comes with a very well-designed Quick-Adjust Slider. By simply pulling up or down on the leather thumb loop (you can’t miss it – it bears the CustomSLR logo), you can easily adjust the length of the strap. It is by far one of the most straightforward and intuitive adjustment methods I’ve come across.
The shoulder pad is also interesting. The bottom is made of top-grain leather that contours to the shape of your shoulder or neck, while the top features three rectangular loops through which the strap can slide back and forth. It has been designed so that the shoulder pad never leaves your shoulder or neck, even though the strap remains perfectly mobile.
Besides the logo, there isn’t much about the strap that would draw attention. Being completely black, it is quite understated and discreet.
Also included with our Slim Strap was a C-Loop Mini, which was CustomSLR’s first product to be funded on Kickstarter and remains one of their most popular.
This accessory attaches to your camera’s tripod mount via a screw mechanism. Attaching it is easy – all you have to do is turn the top dial until the C-Loop is screwed tightly in place.
You can use this accessory in conjunction with the Slim Strap because it features two holes through which you can thread the micro-loops. It also swivels 360 degrees so your strap rarely gets tangled. Suffice it to say, it works like a charm!
By now, you’re probably wondering if there is anything the Slim Strap doesn’t have to offer, and the truth is, it’s about as close to perfect as a strap can get.
The only comment I can make regards the weight limit. On the official website, CustomSLR doesn’t actually specify just how much weight the strap can sustain. The only hint is found in the FAQ section of their Kickstarter campaign page, where they state that heavier setups which include telephoto lenses and/or full frame bodies aren’t the best match.
This being the case, I’d say that small to medium lenses on an average sized mirrorless body won’t be a problem, but I’d be reluctant to carry around anything larger. This includes some of the larger lenses from Sony which, despite being technically mirrorless, are actually just as big and heavy as DSLR lenses.
You can find out more information about CustomSLR’s Slim Strap on their official website.