Kai Leaves DigitalRev, The #1 Photography YouTube Channel

Kai Man Wong, better known by viewers solely as Kai, announced a few days ago that he will be leaving as host of DigitalRev. DigitalRev is of course the most subscribed to photography channel on YouTube, with currently over 1.7 million people signed up. It is run by the Hong Kong based photography retailer of the same name, and has been a staple of entertainment in the online photography community since 2009.

The channel actually started back in 2007, but Kai didn't become the main presenter until 2009, and from there is when things began to take off for them. He teamed up with his cameraman Lok Cheung and the two of them began building a large following, known for their tongue-in-cheek and humorous style of videos. These videos mostly consist of reviewing and testing out new gear, while usually trying to be funny with a lack seriousness at the same time.

I personally loved the show, and enjoyed it for what it was: pure entertainment with the occasional inappropriate joke thrown in. Rarely did I actually learn anything useful from them, but that wasn't the point of the program. For about 10 minutes a week I was treated with an easygoing video with a few laughs mixed in, revolving around my passion of photography. DigitalRev was completely different from everything else out there on the web when it first started. The videos were also a hit not only for Kai and Lok's personalities, but also because of the quality of the videos, in terms of their concepts, editing, and the fun factor it gave.

However, things changed back in the beginning of 2015 when, unfortunately for us viewers, Kai returned to his home in the U.K., and began filming his segments from there. Lok then made his own separate videos for the channel from Hong Kong. For me it never really was the same after that, and I personally went from making sure I caught each episode every week, to just checking it out every once in awhile. Kai and Lok played great off each other. They were perfect co-hosts, and it really became less interesting after Kai went back to the U.K.

It was fun while it lasted, a good seven year run, but things change and people evolve. However this will not be the last of Kai or DigitalRev. So for the viewers out there that need there dose of Kai, he has started his own channel, and already has released a few videos. While DigitalRev will also still march on, Kai is no longer there, but they still have Lok, along with a few new personalities and faces on the team.

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25 Comments

Dang.... first Casey Neistat leaves daily vlogging... and Kai leaves RigitalRev.

Is 2016 over yet?!?!?

Anonymous's picture

Casey just released a new travel movie today that is pretty great. I'm excited for him to be releasing better content less often.

Oh I know. I will just miss Casey's daily adventures.

The Vietnam movie was awesome! I look forward to more content like that.

Jorge Garcia's picture

And now Lok Cheung has also announced he's leaving DRTV. https://fstoppers.com/news/lok-cheung-also-leaves-drtv-biggest-photograp...

EDIT: I didn't see your comment further below. I'm preaching to the choir.

Sean Molin's picture

I was never the biggest Kai/DigitalRev fan. They tried to somewhat to emulate the style of Top Gear, but the chemistry isn't there, it was a bit cheesy, and the jokes typically fall pretty flat. I appreciate the effort and the content, but I was never excited about their videos.

With that said, I will be interested in seeing Kai's personal work and seeing if it was DigitalRev's format I didn't care for or Kai's writing and performing style itself.

Michael Kormos's picture

Now now, Sean, let's not compare a YouTube video blog to an award-winning TV show with a million-dollar budget.

Let's be honest though. Talking about camera gear just doesn't have the same oomph as fast, sexy cars. I don't care who's hosting the show. Ricky Gervais couldn't make a funny show talking about camera gear. Kai did the best he could, and for me, that's mighty good!

Sean Molin's picture

You're misrepresenting my issue. It has nothing to do with budget. I think they got the general style of Top Gear emulated well enough to easily see the inspiration. The production value of DigitalRev is fine and I've never had any problem with how slick and well-edited it is.

And I never thought the show or Kai were abysmal or anything — just not as funny or clever as they thought they were.

Agreed. Good riddance.

Anonymous's picture

As opposed to fstoppers content which is so sophisticated?

Sean Molin's picture

Who said anything about sophistication?

Anonymous's picture

Well you called Digital Rev cheesy. It was just you're attitude about it that's all. You call out digital rev but how many bikini shoots have fstoppers done? It's not exactly high brow material on either site is my point.

Totally agree. I always got more from the Camera Store TV guys. Same reason I never like KR.

Anonymous's picture

I love the camera store videos. A bit dry sometimes but really great reviews.

Anonymous's picture

I like Kai's new channel. Digital revs videos are not the same without him and personally I find them very hard to watch now. Kai has a way of reviewing gear that I enjoy so I'm pumped he's making his own content now.

Niels Veeneman's picture

and this is also the end of DRtv, loved the show and mostly kai's stupidity and humor
i watched a few episodes with only Lok and he is just missing the factor the keep the show going and most of the time i have no clue what he is saying

Thanks Kai the vids where awesome hope you're on to something new

Eric Lefebvre's picture

I like Lok but he isn't a strong enopugh personality to be the focal point of a new team ... he worked well as a counter to Kai's personality .. it balanced out the dynamics but on his own ...

Lenzy Ruffin's picture

Let's not forget about Alamby. She was a big part of the fun factor of the show's heyday. It wasn't the same after she left. Hard to see the channel maintaining success with two of the three stars gone. They had a great run, though.

Pete Whittaker's picture

I agree. That show worked best as an ensemble with three distinct personalities. The people they've surrounded Lok with now, seem very bland.

Jay Jay's picture

I used to think Kai was the biggest tool when i first watched his videos, but later i started to really enjoy his offbeat sense of humor and reviews. Rev is losing its biggest star :/

It looks like DigitalRev has "Jumped the Shark" (Happy Days reference to when it went downhill). First, Alamby left, now Kai. Lok remains.
It like the BBC Top Gear losing Clarkson, May, and Hammond. I'm not spending $100 for Amazon Prime just to watch one TV show featuring the former hosts of Top Gear.

Lok just quit DevitalRev...

And now Lok just announced that he left DigitalRev...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OFgtoTSPMhk

When Alamby left for Hypebeast everyone thought that was the end of DREV. I have to admit, Kai and Lok kept it entertaining and believe it or not it was refreshing. With both of them gone i think this is the end of all things DREV.

Its almost as if they got spooked by something. This might be more related to the Chinese goverment and the mass kidnapping of outspoken young HK citizens. Its a long shot but theres too much of the unknown.

Hopefully this isnt the case for these 2 young fellas.