It's that time of the year again, where your loved ones ask what you'd like for Christmas, Hanukkah, or any other celebration you may partake in. Rather than fumble around trying to make a list of things you might need to further your photography career, I thought I'd break down the absolute best gifts for photographers under $75.
This list is just one of three being released, with the best gifts under $200 released tomorrow, and the best gifts under $500 released on Friday. So if you're looking to up your game, and give more lavish gifts, stay tuned for the upcoming days to get a better idea of things all photographers need and should have. But without further ado, here is the best gifts for photographers and videographers for under $75 -
Fstoppers Flash Disc
It wouldn't be a Fstoppers list of gifts unless we listed our own, right? The Fstoppers Flash Disc is a pocket-able softbox for your speed light, developed my Fstoppers founders, Lee Morris & Patrick Hall. If you frequent Fstoppers, you've seen us promote them, and upon reading the reviews, you'll find that it's one of the very best portable modifiers for speed lights. Best of all, they're no longer sold out, and orders and be made directly from Amazon.
Sandisk 16GB Extreme Pro Compact Flash Card
A question I get asked often is "Have you ever used ______ brand memory cards?" Certainly you've probably been asked this question as well, and my response is to always pay a little more, and stick with a brand you can trust, as the risk isn't worth saving a few dollars for. That is why I recommend Sandisk cards exclusively. They're fast, work well, and have a great lifetime warranty with them. And being photographers, we can never have too many memory cards.
1 Year of Crashplan
Data management is always a concern for photographers, and I cannot stress enough how it's important to have a 3-2-1 backup system. The final step of that popular backup system suggests having a backup of your work offsite, which is why I love Crashplan. Crashplan is a secure cloud based service that allows you to store unlimited data on their servers for only $60 a year. Using their easy to use software, you're able to have it backup all your work automatically, and from multiple computers and drives. While it's not the most glamorous gift, it's an absolute necessity for all photographers and videographers.
LowePro Event Messenger 250 Bag
I have my favorite bag for photography, but it's unnecessary to carry every lens and piece of gear with me to every single shoot; which makes having a second bag so great. Having a smaller bag to lighten the load on your shoulders makes a world of difference when shooting for a couple hours. For me, I personally love the LowePro Event Messenger 250. It's lightweight, carries enough gear for most jobs, and looks nice. My ProRunner 450AW will still be my forever favorite bag, but practicality has purpose, and my Messenger 250 is exactly that.
Black Rapid Camera Strap
If you've ever slung a DSLR around your neck, you've probably noticed how the standard strap can quickly cut into your neck and shoulders. One of the first things photographers often do is replace their straps with an aftermarket one, and among the best is Black Rapid. Not only are their straps sleek, comfortable and practical, their customer service is incredible as well. Using their sling design, you're able to get the camera off of your neck, and resting on your side. After a few hours, this can make a huge difference to your overall comfort. Pair that with all the little pockets for batteries and memory cards, it makes for one really nice and practical strap.
Yongnuo YN 560 III Camera Flash
If you've looked at the prices of Canon or Nikon flashes, you've probably had to catch your breath at some of the prices they have for their larger units. A $400 flash can be a costly investment, so Hong Kong based Yongnuo has made it a little cheaper. Yes, these are Chinese knock offs of Canon and Nikon flashes, but all reports from pros everywhere say that they're just as good as their Canon and Nikon counterparts. With the power comparable to a Canon 580EX or Nikon SB800, it's hard to say no to these Chinese knock offs at 1/4th the price of their respected clones.
Below is a short list of things under $30 dollars, that we all need at one point or another.
Eneloop AA Rechargeable Batteries
Eneloop makes the best rechargeable batteries on the market, and if you're using flashes, triggers or other photography peripherals, you'll need plenty of batteries. Fortunately, eneloops are cheap, and hold their charge for longer than most other rechargeable batteries.
Lexar Compact Flash Card Reader
It never hurts to have a backup card reader, and in this day and age, you're going to want one that is USB 3.0 supported to speed up your transfer rates considerable. Lexar makes a sleek and simple card reader that looks good on anyone's desk.
Wireless Remote For Camera
While I personally don't use a remote for my camera when I'm shooting, I'm certainly happy to have one when I need it. Wireless remotes for virtually all cameras can be found for reasonably cheap, and should be in every photographers camera bag.
Have more suggestions for great gifts under $75? Feel free to contribute in the comments below. And check out out $200 and less gift guide for photographers and videographers.