I have not owned a ton of cameras in my life, but each new one has been heavier than the last. I’ve grown to prefer a battery grip on my DSLRs and on a few rare occasions I need the use of a hot shoe flash. For whatever reason, my neck has always cracked a little too loud and I think my neck straps had something to do with it.
When I think about it, a neck strap makes no sense at all. My neck is not built to carry things on it, when I’m not carrying my camera I don’t usually carry a ten pound weight around my neck to hold its place. Finding an alternative neck strap setup seemed to be an issue worth delving into and I found a solution. This solution comes in the form of a Black Rapid shoulder strap. It’s a beautiful thing, the shoulder strap screws into the tripod mount on the bottom of the camera and allows it to hang down by your side with no neck involvement at all. After hours and hours of using a shoulder strap I don’t feel that fatigued because quite a bit of my body exists in between my arms and legs to support a camera from my shoulders but not my neck so much. There’s also a quick release on the back of the strap as well so you won’t risk injury or accidentally choke yourself to death. Pretty convenient.
Now that I have removed the Canon neck strap from my camera I have some options for yet another piece of equipment to accompany the Black Rapid strap. A Canon E1 hand strap goes nicely in place of the previous neck strap. Not only can I have a shoulder strap when I want one, but if I’m doing studio work for the day I can disconnect it and simply use the hand strap. It’s a one-two punch combo. I greatly prefer this setup instead of taking a neck strap and wrapping it around my arm or hurting my neck with it. I think I have saved my neck years and years of grief by using the shoulder strap-hand strap combo and I highly recommend the same to anyone tired of a sore neck.
That being said, I’m not really hardcore into gear but it definitely is nice to buy something that fills a need and serves a purpose. If ever there is a product that you stumble upon that appears to be useful to you in some way, buy it. It’s probably worth the money in the long run.