By Betsy Finn, M.Photog.Cr., CPP
I have a love hate relationship with camera straps. They are useful, and save my wrists (not to mention keep my camera safe). But they tend to be uncomfortable, bulky, and most annoying, make it more difficult to stow away my camera when it’s not being used.
So when I saw the Miggo Strap & Wrap, I was intrigued. A camera strap that doubled as a soft case? Interesting. For this review, I received a DSLR/Mirrorless (CSC) Strap & Wrap. They have one in development for “professional” DSLRs that should be able to hold full-frame sensor bodies like my Nikon D3. For this review, I pulled out a smaller DSLR, my Nikon D200. I’ll talk about the fit more in a little bit, once I explain how the Strap & Wrap works.
The Strap & Wrap is a long piece of neoprene with a zipper down its length, an enclosed mounting plate at one end, and a padded neck strap at the other end. Below you can see how the strap looks zipped and unzipped before you attach a camera.
The mounting plate is sturdy but soft, with many little holes so you can adjust where the strap is mounted to your camera depending on where the lens sits on your particular camera model. You’ll want to play around with off-center installation and find the location that's best for you.
The mounting screw comes apart so that you can move it to whichever location is best. Note that there is a rubber washer on the one side (that goes up against your camera) and the metal screw goes on the outside (below). You can theoretically keep this camera strap on and use the female threads on the outer surface of the screw to mount the whole shebang to a tripod. Or maybe a mounting plate would be more practical, depending on how often you intend to stabilize your camera.
Once installed on your camera, the strap will rotate freely around the screw post (it doesn’t have threads along its entire length for this reason. Here’s what it looks like attached to my camera body.
See the blurry white arc in the upper right of the frame? That’s actually a lens cap holder. This is a godsend for me, since I am always misplacing my lens caps. They have a mind of their own and don’t like to stay in my pocket, so having a special stow pocket is fantastic.
The camera strap function is pretty selfexplanatory. You unzip the zipper and hang the strap across your body or around your neck (Miggo recommends cross-body for DSLRs). Comfortwise, the neoprene works great. But for my petite (5'3") frame, the strap is just too long … the camera falls at my hip or below, even when worn cross-body. On the flip side, this length would be ideal for my husband, who is tall and usually struggles with camera straps being too short.
To convert from the strap to a camera wrap, you simply zip the zipper closed and wrap the length of neoprene over the camera. Depending on the length of your lens, you will wrap it differently.
• Short lens: wrap comes up from below, over the LCD screen, then the top of the camera, around the lens, back over the LCD screen a second time, and then the open loop will secure around the padded lens.
• Long lens: wrap comes up from below around the front of the lens, then the top of the camera, over the LCD screen, underneath the body, and then the loop secures around the lens.
You’ll want to have your camera’s lens cap on when you wrap it because the zipper does pass over the front of the lens. And while it is an invisible zipper (meaning it’s hidden/protected inside the neoprene), I would still rather be safe than sorry when it comes to my lenses.
Wrapping up the camera wasn’t all that tricky. Depending on the lens I used, the fit was more snug or even a little loose. That’s why Miggo suggests two ways to wrap it up.
Here’s what my camera looked like in the Strap & Wrap:
And in case you’re wondering, yes, I was able to still use the grip on my camera (see below).
So, that’s how it works. The smaller the body, the larger the lens you can wrap up in the Miggo Strap & Wrap. Overall, I really like the concept of this strap/case. I’m a little bummed that the strap is longer than ideal for my height, but if you are average height or tall, you’ll probably be thrilled. I wish that the strap could wrap around the sides of the camera body to protect that too (see the photos above, the sides of my DSLR remained exposed), but I guess the lens end or the LCD screen side are most fragile so as a soft case, this seems adequate. Miggo gets bonus points from me for eliminating the problem of where to store my camera strap.
And as I mentioned earlier, there isn’t a currently a version for large DSLRs—Miggo products are suitable for small and medium-size DSLR cameras only. The Strap & Wrap retails for $49.99. Miggo also makes a Grip & Wrap version that is similar in concept, but instead of a camera strap, becomes a wrist strap; it retails for $39.99. For more information, visit:
Betsy Finn, M.Photog.Cr.,CPP lives in Michigan. Her studio, Betsy’s Photography, can be found on the web at bphotoart.com.