Camera vests - what do you use and why?


hmm I recognise this place! And some of you!
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May 1, 2008
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So I've been looking around at possibly getting a camera vest - something suitable for hiking/travel/wildlife and also being slightly less outlandish than my camo jacket, whilst having a good number of pockets for putting things into (as opposed to the rest of modern fashion which appears to loath the idea of pockets).

So I've been looking and thus far the following three appear to be sitting at the top of the list:
The Vest Guy - photo vest
Stealth gear rural
although I must admit I don't like that single fat front pocket design and much prefer the look of their
Stealth Gear urban even though the colours are rather wrong ;)
Domoke Jacket/vest

Far as I can tell, esp from reviews like the domoke might be slightly less high profile and the pockets a little less bulky, but it also appears to be slightly lighter in the build quality area - suitable for town/urban, but maybe not quite as good for out-doors type affairs.

So I'd be interested to hears peoples views on these or any other kinds of photo vests being used. I'll admit that, at the moment, the Vest Guy vest is probably my top choice, but I'm open to other suggestions
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But this:

is my current only alternative! ;)
see what i mean :lol: go to your local fishing shop and you will find similar to those waistcoats for a fraction of the price
This might sound crazy but I think a plain old fishing vest would be more comfortable. The Vest guy one looks like it'll get hot fast. How much stuff do you carry with you?? :D
Fishing and shooting certainly appear to have legions of vests of their own!

As for how much gear and getting hot - agreed the Stealth and Vest-guy designs appear to be much warmer makes than some of the lighter vests. Thing is I think I'm gravitating toward two vests - one being a light general overvest - ie mostly there for pockets and holding a few items; and a second much like a backpack in its carrying capacity, which was part of the attraction of the vestguy one (waterpouch - big lens pouch on the back - lens lugs on the vest etc...). The kind that rather replaces the bag for quick access.
I use a cheapo vest from B&H. I think it is made by Hummer for some odd reason. I don't use one a lot which is why I didn't splurge on a good one. For what it's worth I read something a while back about the Domke vest. I think it was a topic on another forum but I can't remember for sure. Regardless it stated that it was a very good vest and was recommended highly.
It seems very nice indeed. It's kind of like the bags you'll see rich women carrying around. BARELY large enough to carry a credit card, but ultra stylish. This is exactly that. BARLEY big enough to carry 2 lenses, but super stylish.

That can't be a proper photographers vest - far far too few pockets ;)
It's a $360 photography vest. Made by Manfrotto. To go along with their $300 photography gloves. :lol:

Not sure if this would work for you, but I just wear a good pair of Arc'teryx or Mammut cargo pants, and they hold everything I need. My favorite pair are extremely light, just about waterproof, good in summer on their own, or winter with something fluffy underneath, and they've got 6 zippered pockets. My softshell jacket has another 3 zip pockets + 3 internal pockets. Does the trick just fine, and you're comfortable in pretty much any weather.
I have something similar to this: 15307XXL Tamrac 153 - World Correspondent's Vest - XX-Large Khaki
Mine came from Cabelas and is no longer carried by them. The only difference is the four big front pockets are padded.
Mine is actually very similar to this. Cabela's: Cabela's Safari® Vest with some amenities for photography.

Some things to consider.

Get Cotton. Washes easily, breaths easy and is comfortable after it is washed a time or two.
Epaulets: Not a military thing. Great for carrying more than one body and not having it slip off.
Get a mixture of velcro and zipper pockets. Velcro for speed, zipper for security.
D rings near a pocket are handy. I keep my media in a Pixel Pocket Rocket. Has a strap with a clip. Never lost it yet.
Large back pocket. Mine is big enough to carry a 70-200 f2.8 with hood reversed. It is also a good place to put a couple of water bottles or so. You can get thirsty on the sidelines shooting a game and there are no concession stands on the sidelines.
Buy big. Mine is big enough to go over a coat when the weather gets cold but can still be sized down in the waist with the adjustable straps on the side.

If you are looking for fashion, forget it. If you are looking for useable then a vest is great. Like it better than my belt system from Think Tank. It's a good belt system, but I prefer carrying the weight on my shoulders rather than my waist.
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