Points in Focus Photography

Op/Tech USA’s Adapt Its Review

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I’ve long had a love hate relationship with camera straps. When I need one, I really need it but for the rest of the time they just get in my way.

I’ve tried quick release straps in the past, most of which leave some kind of short tail attached to the camera to hold the camera side quick release connector. These tails in a lot of ways become even worse than the straps themselves. I’ve had occasion to have one of these tails almost fall into the mirror box while cleaning the camera, something I definitely don’t want to happen.

A lot of the problem, at least for me, stems from the way Canon designed their strap loops. Unlike Nikon, and some other companies, Canon doesn’t use split rings; instead, they use a solid metal boss that’s just big enough for the normal width fabric-web camera strap to pass though. With a split ring, any camera strap can be made quick release simply by attaching a quick release connector, carabineer, or d-ring to the end of the strap and snapping it though the split ring.

When I first saw Op/Tech USA’s Adapt Its, I thought they looked like the perfect solution to the Canon photographers’ strap problem—or at least mine.

Strap Attached to Adapt It
Strap Attached to Adapt It

Adapt Its are small plastic tabs that will fit though the type of strap boss that Canon uses and in turn provide a larger loop to clip on a quick release connector. Further, they’re designed so that the Adapt It won’t fall out of the strap boss when there’s nothing attached.

While they looked great in theory, they haven’t worked out so well in practice. On a Canon 40D, they’d need to be modified to fit. On the grip side, the Adapt It is too short to clear the top of the body when pushed in with the bulge/base away from the camera, and the base would have to be trimmed to fit to have the ear point out away from the body.

The situation is better on Canon’s EOS-1D Mark 3. The Adapt It’s fit on both sides easy enough, though the one on the connector side will have to be pushed through so the ear sticks out away from the side of the body instead of up, in order to have enough clearance. The grip side has enough clearance when pushed though so the Adapt It points up, but it’s tight.

The last body I tried them on is Canon’s 5D mark III. On the 5D mark III the Adapt it’s are tight on clearances on both sides, but they fit. That said, I’d be worried about the camera’s finish given the clearances.

In fact, in all 3 cases I have my concerns about the long-term impact on the camera’s finish given the proximity a clip would have to the body given the clearances of the straps.

Adapt Its on an EOS-1D
Adapt Its on an EOS-1D

Wear on my camera’s finish isn’t my only concern. Op/Tech USA claims the Adapt Its can hold 15, pounds, though I’m not entirely clear if that’s per Adapt It or for the set of 2. I haven’t destroyed any trying to test their weight limits, though I may do that in the future and post an update. Add a safety factor of 2 on top of that (assuming the load is for a pair, if one breaks the other one has to carry the full load), you’re looking at 7.5 pounds. An EOS-1D with a 600Ex-RT and a 70-200/2.8L IS II USM weighs in at 7.4 pounds, which is pretty darn close the maximum weight I’d want on these.

Compounding the issue is that on most of the camera’s I have the Adapt It wouldn’t just be under tension—being pulled straight up by the strap—but under some shearing load as the Adapt it would be bent over. Moreover, there’s also the potential for the repeated flexing of those non-vertical Adapt Its to weaken over time as they’re loaded and unloaded.

In the end, at least for me, what looked like a great idea that would solve my problems, ended up being something I’m not at all ready to trust to do so. The length issues would be easy enough to solve if there was a longer version but my strength concerns would take more testing, or more bravery, than I’m willing to put in to a $5 product.

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