How to trick-out your picture-taking device without breaking the bank
Any high-end camera—be it a DSLR or mirrorless—is going to cost a chunk of change. Luckily, the accessories don't have to cost a fortune, too. To find the best, affordable add-ons we consulted our photographer friends and sifted through online reviews. Here are five that all come in under $50.
Joby GorillaPod Zoom Tripod ($50)
You can spend a $1,000 on a tripod, but if you’re looking for something that will simply hold your camera still, check out the GorillaPod. It’s portable, lightweight, crazy adjustable, and has become the industry standard for tabletop tripods since hitting the market in 2010. The Zoom is strong enough to hold big DSLRs with telephoto lenses.
Black Rapid Cross Shot Breathe ($45)
Pros turn to Black Rapid camera straps because they’re comfortable and they can take a beating. The Cross Shot Breathe gives you the sense of security the pros depend on at an entry-level price. The cross-body strap lets the camera rest at your hip, while the locking carabiner attachment point means your camera is guaranteed to stay on its leash.
Hoya 77mm UV Filter ($35)
A UV filter is essentially a clear piece of glass with a coating that blocks ultraviolet light waves, which can make your pictures hazy. The filter also protects your expensive lens from dirt and scratches.
Peak Design Camera Shell ($40)
If you’re shooting in harsh climates (think snow, deserts, or the beach) consider this water resistant camera jacket, which slides over the camera for a layer of protection whether it’s in your pack or on your shoulder. The Shell cinches tight, or opens at the lens and viewfinder, letting you shoot on the fly without removing the jacket entirely.
SpiderLight Hand Strap ($45)
One drop could break your camera. The SpiderLight attaches to your camera’s body and wraps around your hand, giving you extra grip so your new baby doesn’t slip. The SpiderLight is made for small DSLRs and mirrorless cameras: upgrade to the SpiderPro if you have a heavier camera.