Product Review: Peak Design Capture Camera Clip

Sometimes in life you come across amazing products. And other times, you discover products that dramatically fall short of the hype that’s been built around them. Beware, this is a tale of disappointment.

The Peak Design Capture Camera Clip is a device that was designed as a type of quick draw holster to hold a camera on a belt clip or bag strap, for easy access. Peak design has been super hyped up in the photography industry as a company with incredibly design centric methodology, that designs super unique and highly functional products. I have to say that after purchasing my first Peak Design device, I’m incredibly disappointed. This device is a Great concept (that’s already been achieved by competitors, mind you), but designed extremely poorly.
Here we go!
I was really excited to try this clip after reading so many great reviews. It’s a great concept, but the design is very poor and here’s 5 reasons why you shouldn’t waste your money on this.

1) THE BASE PLATE IS TOO SMALL FOR STANDARD TRIPOD HEADS

The plate that you must screw into the base of your camera (or battery grip) that comes with this clip, is conveniently too small to fit most tripods. In order to get a bigger, standard sized plate that will fit into a tripod ball head (or other type of tripod heads), you have to pay them even more for a better model or buy an “adapter.” Just what I need in my life, more adapters. I feel cheated. So when you’re in the field, and doing any work that needs a tripod, you’re going to have to swap off this plate on the base of the camera and put your other base plate on for your tripod head. Which leads me to bullet point number 2…
the peak design capture camera clip, in pieces.
the design of the peak design capture camera clip includes an awful lot of small pieces.

2) YOU NEED A SMALL TOOL FOR THE BASE PLATE

You also need to carry around an allen key (comes with), in order to screw your base plate onto your camera, as mentioned above. I figured that this company would have taken a look at some tripod manufactures to design a better plate that you could quickly and easily attach and remove without an easy to lose tool—they exist already. This company is supposed to be super innovative, so why on earth did they design something that needs an allen key? And speaking of easy to lose things… here’s bullet point number 3…

3) A LOT OF EASY TO LOSE COMPONENTS

This clip has an awful lot of parts you have to finagle with in order to attach it to a belt or strap. As seen in the photos I’m attaching, there are several threaded screw type pieces and if you’re an outdoorsman or super active photographer, they’re just more pieces to easily lose when switching the location of this clip—If you’re a normal human being and switch pants a lot, taking this off and putting it back on your belt over and over becomes annoying—you must finagle with two main screws to get the placement just right.

4) POORLY DESIGNED LOCK / QUICK RELEASE LOCATION

The push to release lock is nice, but it’s positioned in such a way that it requires two hands to safely remove the camera from the clip without fear of dropping your camera. I was hopeful that this company would have designed a quicker way for people to quickly release the camera, that would only require one hand—another shortcoming on the design side of things.

5) INCREDIBLY UNCOMFORTABLE & AWKWARD IN REAL LIFE

My biggest gripe with this is the way they show the photos in all the examples of seemingly weightless DSLRS with lenses sitting comfortably on a persons hip or on a bag strap. Here’s how physics really work: Due to the vertical orientation of placement of this clip on a person’s hip, the weight of any camera bigger than a point and shoot is going to push the bottom of the clip right into your hip. It’s incredibly uncomfortable. I have a mirrorless camera with a kit lens and after wearing it for a few hours while walking, it left a bruise on the side of my leg from the hard plastic pushing in, due to our old friend gravity. When you walk, the camera will bounce, and thus pushing the clip into you even harder… over and over and over. The bigger the lens, the more annoyed you will be!
Also, while it sits on a bag strap in front of your chest, unlike the wonderful photos they show you on the package, your lens will not sit in a perfect vertical orientation and be comfortable. As you walk it bounces all around no matter how tightly you secure it. As I show in my photos, you can see the clip pushing into my hip and how awkward it is on the front of my bag. I have a kit lens on a mirrorless camera and it’s a bit nuisance—even though it says it’s fine for DSLRs.
img_0819
Even with a moderately sized camera, the orientation in which the camera hangs is really uncomfortable, even on a backpack strap.
The proper design for this would have been to allow the camera body to sit flush again a person’s leg (or chest strap) and have the lens sit horizontally to avoid the clip pushing into legs or your chest (if you’re wearing in on a backpack strap, of course).

In Summary

After trying this thing out for a couple of days, I’m just really frustrated as how it’s marketed, as opposed to how it really works. It’s got a ton of moving pieces which is an unnecessary design.
photo of the peak design capture camera clip
This is how the camera SHOULD hang in order to distribute the weight of the camera properly, but unfortunately, that’s not how it works.
It sits awkwardly and uncomfortably with any moderately sized camera. If you look at the sample photos, they’re clearly all set up in a way that falsely portrays how cameras will really sit within this clip when it’s actually in use. Lenses will not sit perfectly straight in a vertical fashion. Also, don’t even think of putting anything larger than a kit lens on your camera with this clip.

2 Comments Add yours

  1. FWIW, a few of my takeaways on it…

    1) The base plate is standard ARCA-Swiss size. I’d been consolidating my tripod heads onto this standard before I got my capture clip, and so that’s been a nice bonus.

    2) I don’t usually sit my camera on the clip for long periods. If I’m going out shooting, I usually keep the camera in my hand (with a wrist strap), and being able to pop it onto the clip so that I can easily change lenses is nice. Combined with my fanny pack (which holds a second lens and some batteries when I’m oot and aboot), it’s a pretty convenient setup

    3) Everything works MUCH better without the battery grip. I tend to only put my battery grip on my camera if I’m shooting sports or timelapse, as it makes it as big/heavy as a full DSLR, and ain’t nobody want that. Without the grip the lens is flush with the bottom, which prevents the clip from turning/digging in Much more comfortable.

    4) I’m not sure what you mean about extra pieces– you’ve got everything taken apart in your photo, but when it’s put together, the base plate is screwed into your camera and the clip is attached to your bag, and there are no extra pieces except for the Allen key. You don’t have to use the allen key, as there’s a coin slot in the head of the attachment screw, but I like being able to get the extra leverage which you can’t get with the small flip head screws that most bases have, and, since it’s a standard size base, I rarely take mine off (only when I’m putting on my battery grip, and the base that I leave on my battery grip has never come off)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. jeffgolenski says:

      @sam

      All valid points, for sure. Of course, as your comment points out, the ease of use and quality of the product is reliant on the workflow a photographer might have.

      I’ll address each one for clarification.

      1) “The base plate is standard ARCA-Swiss size”

      That’s all well and good, but the fact remains that an upgrade is in order to fit the standard sized plate that’s used for hobbyists and amateur shooters in the USA. Whether it be the adapter for this model, or an upgrade to the peak design capture PRO model, it means that this model falls short. The price that this sells for is pretty steep for many non-professionals, and I’d assume that most professional photographers are going for the higher peak design models anyway, so basically what I’m saying is that they’re letting the USA demographic for this particular model down. It’s not a good all-in-one solutions. It’s going the way of Apple and their dongles.

      2) “I don’t usually sit my camera on the clip for long periods.”

      It’s funny, because that’s exactly WHY I bought this, to do that. As you’ve seen the way I shoot in person, if I can avoid bringing a bag with me, I don’t bring it. When I take long day trips, I’m able to carry my rig in my spider holster with no problems at all, for a full day without issue. Also why I tend to leave my battery grip on all the time…

      3) “Without the grip the lens is flush with the bottom, which prevents the clip from turning/digging in Much more comfortable.”

      Oh absolutely, but a few points to retort that…

      a) As mentioned above, I purchased this so I’m able to carry my camera on my hip for long periods of time so I can explore or take day trips that are low-key and without a cumbersome bag—of any size.

      b) I haven’t mentioned it yet, but this entire review is all due to the success I’ve had with my spider holster for the past 4+ years. My points about the orientation in which the camera rests is the focal point of this one. With the SH, the camera hangs low, so the camera body lays flush with your leg and the lens sticks outward. Due to this, the weight and size of my rig (within reason of course) is irrelevant. It remains comfortable for long periods of time. I’m certain I could hang my cat from my spider holster and life would be good… unless he were to scratch the hell out of me, of course.

      4) “I’m not sure what you mean about extra pieces– you’ve got everything taken apart in your photo”

      Sam! I never said “Extra” pieces, just said there are a lot of pieces in general. A lot of unnecessary moving components. You know me, I’m a designer. I’m a homing missile for imperfection. I see why they have all these threaded screws for adjustment, but in my brain I’ve already redesigned this to be way more efficient with way less room for error. The last thing I need is to be switching this device from my belt to my backpack and have the adjustment thread fall down a central heating vent in the floor.

      “…You don’t have to use the allen key, as there’s a coin slot in the head of the attachment screw…”

      If you want absolute security so that the base doesn’t fall of, you do. The coin slot you mention, which I think is for a screwdriver as well is a little too shallow to really work as effectively as the allen key though. The “flip head” screw that I have in my manfrotto base place has never let me down, and I’ve had it for 10 years. It always secures the base plate firmly to the camera or battery grip. What I was saying here is that I think Peak Design could have spent a little more time designing a way in which a lame 3rd party tool wasn’t needed to carry around for piece of mind.

      Thanks for the feedback sam!

      Liked by 1 person

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