Not long ago I bought a new camera. I did a lot of research before I made my decision. While I had loved my Canon Digital Elph (which is, in my opinion, the best pocket sized digital camera available) I wanted something “more” but I didn't want to move all the way to a DSLR. After much research I stuck with Canon and bought a Powershot SX10IS . I love the features this camera has- 20x zoom, vari-angle view screen, the option to use the view finder instead of the screen, a quick shutter for action shots and more options than a typical point and shoot. (There is a newer model of this camera since I purchased: PowerShot SX20IS .)
Below is a photo I took that really shows off what the camera can do. Snow can be tricky to shoot in with sun and reflections and such, but I was able to get this crisp action shot. So crisp, in fact, that you can actually see the snow flying behind the sled. I just love it.
With the new camera came a search for some new accessories. Here are my 5 favorite camera accessories for travel.
1) The first item I searched for was a camera bag. It was a challenge to find a bag that wasn't utilitarian and black. I found Martilena bags online and had a bag designed for me. I had a choice of brown or black as a base, was able to choose the accent fabric and additional options.
I love that this bag can be carried a variety of ways: over the shoulder, cross body or as a backpack. I also appreciate the little details that make this not your “typical” camera bag. Bags begin at $52; price varies by size and features. My bag cost just over $100 (which is pretty average for a good camera bag).
For a more thorough tour of this bag- the Meridian design- I created a video.
2) The tiny tripod I had for my small point and shoot just wasn't tough enough for my new camera. I replaced it with this Targus Grypton Tripod . I like that it can stand on a flat surface or can wrap around things like handrails, tree branches and playground equipment so you can get the perfect angle without a flat surface. Targus tripod can be found for under $15.
3) Rechargeable batteries. The big downfall of this camera is that it uses AA batteries. That can get really expensive. I invested in some Duracell Rechargeable NiMH 2650 (black with a green top). I have been really pleased with them. They hold a charge for weeks at a time. The charger I use, however, is the Energizer CHFMWB-4 Easy Charger . The reason I chose this charger is because it stops charging when the batteries are fully charged. Some chargers don't do this and I have been told that over charging batteries can shorten the span of their usefulness. (I'm not sure if that is accurate, but I really do like the charger.) Batteries run around $17 for an 8 pack, the charger was an additional $16 (it also comes with batteries- just not the kind I use in my camera. Put them in your TV remote.)
4) The strap that came with my camera was rather short- not to mention thin and ugly. At the recommendation of a photographer I admire I asked for a Pepper camera strap for Christmas. The strap was designed by professional photographer Lori Nordstrom (who happens to be from Iowa, too) and comes in so many great designs it was difficult to choose. So I made my husband. I love this strap as it is sturdy, adjusts from 44″ to 55″ and has quick-release clasps so you can change your camera strap as quickly as you change your mood. Straps are $39.95 each.
5) This final product may seem a bit odd as a camera accessory. It's my iPod Touch . Here's why. While my camera may not have all the bells and whistles of a DSLR it has many items that I just don't know how to use. I found a Shortcourses book on how to use it. In addition to the book was a pocket guide ebook for the iPod Touch. Since my Touch goes practically everywhere with me this was a no-brainer. Nothing extra to carry and easy access to information. An iPod Touch begins around $185, the ebook is $9.95.
So, there you have my 5 favorite camera accessories. Do you have something I should add to that list? Please share it in the comments!