The BlackRapid 10-Year Anniversary Edition Classic Retro RS-4 Camera Strap

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When it comes to photo gear, 10 years of continuous sales is considered a good run, and the folk at BlackRapid couldn’t be happier. To celebrate the 10th birthday of the original BlackRapid RS-4 Camera Strap, the company has introduced the 10-Year Anniversary Edition Classic Retro RS-4 Camera Strap.

BlackRapid 10-Year Anniversary Edition Classic Retro RS-4 Camera Strap

This update of BlackRapid’s extremely successful RS-4 camera strap includes a slimmer, low-profile shoulder pad with a nylon honeycomb overlay and several hardware tweaks. Designed for left- and right-handed photographers, BlackRapid’s 10-Year Anniversary Edition Classic Retro RS-4 camera strap features an extensive degree of flexibility in terms of adjusting the strap to best fit your needs. The strap’s 2.9-inch-wide flat shoulder pad, which features a small zippered pocket for stowing memory cards and similarly low-profile accessories, makes carrying heavy gear less tiresome by distributing the weight over a larger area.

Working in hot, humid climes? No problem—the RS-4’s shoulder pad is made of moisture-wicking materials, and the strap is also adjustable from 29 to 66", with easy front adjustment, to best match your physical size and shooting style.

The running gag at BlackRapid is that their products are “turning the camera world upside down.” Personally, I always found the sight of an expensive camera dangling upside down from a miniature zip line to be unnerving, yet people I know swear by them. Having received an RS-4 to review, I finally had a chance to challenge my prejudices against this praised-by-the-masses camera strap. My conclusions? It’s not bad… I actually got into it.

Though I’ve only used traditional camera straps, to date, it didn’t take long for me to adapt to what was, for me, an unconventional method of shouldering a camera.

In practice, it was easy to shift from what I call the “waist-level dangle” to shooting mode. The camera literally slides up to eye level in a totally fluid motion; it’s not the least bit awkward. The strap is totally adjustable and is equally fluid for left- and right-handed shooters. It’s also worth noting the design and brass and zinc-alloy hardware used in the construction of the BlackRapid RS-4 is equally well thought out and executed.

The length of the strap should be set so the camera is at hip level, and even with your hand when at rest, for optimal functionality.

BlackRapid Tripod Jacket

To commemorate the company’s 10th anniversary, BlackRapid is re-introducing several other popular products, including the BlackRapid Tripod Jacket. Designed for use with most tripods, the BlackRapid Tripod Jacket is intended for situations in which you will be shooting on a tripod from a fixed location in an environment that’s too wet, dusty, sandy, or otherwise too nasty to rest a camera bag. Rather than placing your gear in harm’s way or having to sling it over your shoulder for an indeterminable amount of time, place your essentials into the pockets and loops of the Tripod Jacket and focus your energies on taking pictures.

BlackRapid Tripod Jacket

Made of tough, weather-resistant fabric, BlackRapid’s utility apron features four deep pockets, more than a dozen elastic loops, and a pair of heavy-duty carabiners for holding meters, MOLLE attachment points, spare lenses, tablets, smart devices, water bottles, wipes, filters, spare batteries and memory cards.

If you plan on remaining in place (and on your feet) for long durations, the BlackRapid Tripod Jacket is a smart alternative to standing around like a pack mule with a shoulder-load of photo gear for what could be hours on end. When you get the shot, all you need to do is fold the tripod, wrap and secure the jacket around the tripod legs, and you’re on your way home.

BlackRapid Wander Bundle Smartphone Safety Tether System

Rounding out the trio of 10th-Anniversary photo goodies is the BlackRapid Wander Bundle Smartphone Safety Tether System, an intelligently designed tethered nylon wrist strap for smartphones. Whether you use the BlackRapid Wander Bundle as a wrist strap or tethered to your backpack, camera bag, or camera strap using the included TetheR-Clip carabiner, the BlackRapid Wander Bundle Smartphone Safety Tether System is a smart addition to the BlackRapid family of camera support systems.

BlackRapid Wander Bundle Smartphone Safety Tether System

Do you have any experience using BlackRapid camera support systems? What are your thoughts about using them? We’d love to hear from you, just below.

3 Comments

My only complaint about the BlackRapid sling is the use of the tripod socket. I switched to the equivalent Op/Tech USA sling that uses the camera's strap mounts.  I often carry a monopod and keep a small quick release plate on the camera. I can very quickly mount the camera on the monopod as needed without releasing the camera from the sling.

I agree. I use a Custom SLR strap that is modded to take the PD button slip-on lugs. Easy-peasy. Separate from body mounts.

All my gear works off the A-Swiss mount and is pretty seamless from L-brackets to gimbal to a video cage. Not leaving it for a screw mount...

I am a long time user of their single and double straps and have taken the single all over the world. Very durable and reliable in my experience. I wouldn't be able to do some of the more adventuresome activities (hiking, mountain climbing for example) with a traditional neck strap. Their products have saved my wife (also a strap owner) and I from a ton of neck/shoulder pain with their ergonomic products. The only issue I ever had was a plastic part that broke mostly from me forcing it to "work" and when I sent their support department an email, they quickly delivered not one but two replacement pieces. Solid! Anyways, congratulations on 10 years, and hopefully many many more years!!!

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