My Italian trip: gear prepartion

Well, it has been a long time coming. Believe me.

We have been discussing going to Italy since 2009, when friends of ours were planning to go then. We convinced them to wait until 2010 to come with us. It was then agreed and rescheduled to be in the spring of 2010. But then last year my spouse was struck by breast cancer. And then around September 2010, it was still too early for her to be super active. If you ask, she is fine today.

But the time is now. For real. As I write this post, we are leaving in 17 days. Just the two of us after all, not with our friends, but that’s another story to chat about only around a couple of beers…

So, what will be in my camera bag? I hope not to miss anything as I am already making tough choices. More on those compromises later.

My main gear will be my Nikon D90 with the Nikkor 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6 AFS VR II DX attached as the main lens. I will also bring my Sigma 8-16 f4.5-5.6 DC for those architectural shots and occasional landscape (think Tuscany) I do not want to miss.

I will also carry my Canon G9 point and shoot. I actually like to use it in video mode primarily.

I bring plenty of SD cards. I bought five 16GB Class 10 cards a while back.

I also have a HyperDrive for iPad as my mobile back-up solution. This one will obviously stay in the hotel every day. It will only be used at night to download the content of the day.

You then also get that the iPad is also part of the mix. Avid readers of my blog know that I often discuss topics related to the iPad as a tool for photographers.

I think that I will bring my Nikon SB-900 speed light along for each day trip. Although I most probably will no be able to use it within museums, I still think that it is worth the weight.

A monopod, my GorillaPod and a good old been bag (actually a MagicBag Pad) will be my support systems.

Oh, although not quite support, I did recently change my neck strap to Kata’s Reflex-E Camera Strap. I realized about a month ago that my Kata DR-467i bag has hooks on the shoulder straps to accept clamps like those of the Kata strap. This will definitely lessen the load on my neck by putting my DSLR’s weight on the shoulders.

Speaking of my bag, this is one of the tough decision I had to make.

I own two Kata bags, the DR-467i I spoke of and the 3N1-22, sling bag.

I use the 3N1-22 as my main bag where I keep all my gears. And because of this, it is the one that I carry with me the most often when doing shoots. I love the “swing mode”, but more recently, I have started to use both straps in the “cross your heart” mode which distributes the weight nicely on my back – especially with all the stuff that I carry in there.

However, for travelling purposes, I prefer the DR-467i. Although it carries less gears (which is OK because you do not want all of them everyday) it offers a larger “day trip” container. And I have “field tested” it a long time ago and it is the subject of my first blog post here.

The second compromise I think that I will have to do is to not bring my long range zoom lens, the Sigma 150-500 f/5-6.3 APO DG OS HSM. It’s a beast. Not so much to manipulate it, surprisingly, but mostly a question of weight for the airplane luggage. And, honestly, I do not intend to go bird shooting a lot.

In short, I hope to travel light enough but also with enough gears in order not to miss anything.

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3 Responses to My Italian trip: gear prepartion

  1. Jens says:

    Hi Max,
    best of luck for your trip to Italy!
    You mention airplane luggage in relavance to bringing a lens or not .. NEVER EVER PUT ANYTHING OF VALUE in your luggage. Take as much of your gear into the cabin.
    Stay save and take care,
    Jens

  2. Pingback: My second summer as a photographer: an Italian vacation « MaxPhotoBlog.net

  3. Pingback: My Italian vacation: a photographer’s recap | MaxPhotoBlog.net

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