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Tips on Buying the Right Photo Vest

written by: A. Jitesh•edited by: Rhonda Callow•updated: 6/22/2009

In this buying guide, learn tips on what to look for when choosing a photo vest so you can ensure you get the best one for you and your photography needs. Also included in this article are tips on how to use your new photo vest and the advantages of using a photo vest over a standard camera bag.

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    Domke Photo Vest
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    Advantages of Using a Photo Vest

    The most popular way of carrying one’s photographic equipment might well be the good old camera bag, but there are times when it’s not the most convenient. For example, when on a hike into the forest or to the hills, wearing a photo vest that distributes the weight of all your equipment on your entire body beats lugging around a camera bag any day. Again, searching for a filter or battery is far easier in the pockets of a vest than rummaging the depths of your camera bag. Photo vests also offer a distinct advantage for the frequent air-traveller; any equipment which exceeds the check-in baggage limit can be stuffed into the vest and worn! Read on to find what one should keep in mind while purchasing the right photo vest.

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    Tips on Buying the Right Photo Vest

    1. As with any item of clothing, quality comes first. Never skimp on price if quality depends on it. The best bet is to go for reputed brands like Domke, The Vested Interest, or CampCo.

    2. Choose a photo vest that is cotton or cotton blended material, as cotton can breathe and absorb sweat, which makes you feel comfortable. Also, meshed shoulders or backs improve air circulation and are hence preferable.

    3. Try out the photo vest before you buy it. While trying out, do take your camera and a couple of lenses along and put them in the pocket to see how it feels. Concentrate especially on the load bearing areas, i.e., the shoulders and the seams. Extra shoulder padding and strong seams are a must.

    4. Check out placement and size of the pockets. It should be sufficient for all your gear plus a little more.

    5. Look for lining or waterproofing in the pockets. This will be a saviour in case you’re caught in a downpour.

    6. Try to buy a camera vest that is light coloured rather than dark, as they absorb less heat and are cooler to wear.

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    Tips on Using a Photo Vest

    1. Waist belts tighten your vest around your waist, preventing lenses or other stuff from swaying around.

    2. Always store foodstuffs or snacks that you may want to carry along in a separate pocket.

    3. Though it seems obvious, do not put all your weighty lenses in the lower pockets. Distribute it all around, lest your shoulders start complaining too soon.