However, I find myself fielding a lot of questions about the accessories of all sorts, so here are some thoughts.
1) Tripod. I own a few tripods that retail from $25 to $500. However, the most versatile one runs a bit over $100 and that is the one I use the most. It is a perfect traveling tripod:
I have an older version of it and it has served me quite faithfully for some years now.
Like a lot of tripods, this one has a removable head. Actually, the panhead that comes with this tripod is pretty nice, especially for video use. However, for still photography a lot of people prefer ballheads and Slik offers a couple that are easy to use and not overly expensive (these should work with Velbon tripods, but that’s something to double check):
and for a little more load capacity:
2) Camera bags. Here I will make a couple of recommendations. Personally, I try to drag as little stuff with me as possible, so for most occasions I have switched to an oddly named Crumpler Four Million Dollar Home bag:
It fits my DSLR together with a flash or extra lens and a few small accessories like filter, batteries, etc.
However, some times you just have to carry a couple of lenses with you and my messenger-style bag is just too small. Then you have to switch to a backpack designed for cameras. I can comfortably recommend Tamrac 5550 for that. It is a LARGE bag, but sometimes that fits the bill:
It is not a cheap bag and it is pretty big. However, it will contain a lot of stuff inside and keep it well protected.
On another extreme are the Camera Armor cases, for those occasions when you want no bag at all, but still want some protection for the camera body and some for the lens. Honestly, I am not sure if this approach is my cup of tea, but some people like these. Here is the Nikon D90 version of camera armor:
3) While we are talking about Nikons ::) Here is another nifty gadget that a lot of people seem to like: right angle viewfinder. I am not sure why you would NEED one, but it is definitely cool:
4) Lastly, for those of us who want extra stability for those macro shots (or for tethered use), a remote activation cable is a good thing to have. Wireless remote controls are nice, but they do not give you the same response as a nice wired cable. To continue the Nikon D90 theme:
In the next article on digital photography, I will talk a little bit about DSLR cameras and lenses. However, with Photokina just around the corner, do not hold me to it.