Review: BlackRapid Yeti Dual Camera Strap

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Image By Scott Wyden Kivowitz (Thanks)

In what seems like a long time ago in a city far, far away, I acquired my first BlackRapid Strap. It was the Black Rapid RS-7 and at first I was suspicious about it. Years, hundreds of miles of photo walking and dozens of events later, I still happily used it. When I had to upgrade the way I handle my photography jobs, I was introduced to the BlackRapid Yeti, a dual camera strap. Unlike other dual camera straps, the Yeti sat on one shoulder. It is different.

As photographers, we now have a lot of choices on how we carry our cameras. Let’s see why I chose the BlackRapid Yeti.

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Holds two cameras comfortably
  • Can be set up to hold one camera
  • Webbing keeps strap on shirt

Cons

  • If for some reason you take the left camera off, and you are walking the yeti feels weird and moves a lot. You can use the included stabilizer to counter that though.
  • A smaller person may have an issue with the size of the Yeti strap on the shoulder. However, the Yeti Slim is available.  It is suggested you try before you buy.
  • Depending on what you wear, and the weight of the cameras the Yeti can move your clothes due to its grip. I was wearing a dress shirt on a shoot, and it was a little big on me. The Yeti Moved the shirt around a little. I had to fix myself a bit. I just had to wear a properly fitted shirt and it resolved the issue.

Gear Used

I used my Nikon Olympus Ep1, Nikon FE, EM, D700, D90, and D5100, to test the Yeti.

Tech Specs

Tech specs taken From B&H

  • Holds 2 Cameras with Attached Lenses
  • Use as Double Strap or Single R-Strap
  • Screws to Camera’s 1/4-20 Tripod Socket
  • Non-slip Grip on Shoulder Pad
  • Stabilizer for Right/Left Arm Use
  • Includes BRAD (BlackRapid Arm Defense)
  • Includes FastenR and ConnectR2
  • Compatible with BlackRapid MOD Items

 

Ergonomics

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The topside Material is made of ballistic nylon and is very strong and durable. It’s the type of support you want when carrying an expensive camera. The underside material is made of a 1 cm foam pad with knitted mesh and a rubber grip layer which clung to you especially well when the camera was on. On long days of photography this comes in handy because your arm does not get as fatigued.

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The webbing is what keeps the Yeti on your shoulder. I move around a lot with this strap and it did stay on well, mostly. Depending on your clothing choices and bag choices there are some issues. While the strap will not move, if your clothes are baggy, the clothes themselves can move, sliding on your skin.

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The primary strap length with the pad is 160cm and long enough to fit around someone like me (a large person) easily. This is good because if you have to wear a coat or a lot of clothing, this strap will fit fine. The strap for the second camera is a little shorter at  150cm. It could be shorter because of the way it hung off the body. This was okay because the second strap does not have to go around the body.

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Where both straps connect, the plastic is strong and resilient. They easily hold the weight of  your gear. Everything is easy to adjust as well.

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The bumper that allows you to control how the camera moves on the strap is strong as well. Just click it and it stays.

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The Black Rapid Yeti is hand/machine washable, and you air it dry. If it gets wet or dirty it’s easy to clean. The nylon material is sturdy and has a great, tight stitch. This is important because that stitch will last years, even with a ton of wear and tear. My BlackRapid Straps are a part of my daily kit. I don’t know when I am going to use it, so I just keep it in my bag. Because of this, it has to hold up.

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FastenR FR-3 has a rubber gasket and can be tightly attached to the body. This is the most important part of the Black Rapid Yeti  in my eyes. It connects the camera. It has to be secure, and it is. Being a long time BlackRapid user, I personally have never had an issue. the FastenR FR-3. The connectors are also sturdy and weather resistant as well so you don’t have worry about shooting in extreme conditions.

Build Quality

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The BlackRapid Yeti is put together extremely well. Everything feels strong and sturdy, especially when a camera is attached. The threading is tight and can take being put in and out of a bag. Simply put the BlackRapid Yeti is extremely durable. I’m used to the BlackRapid Strap so I am secure in its use. The top side material is made of ballistic nylon and is extremely strong. The rubber mesh layer that holds the camera to your shoulder is resilient and will have a long life. 

Ease of Use

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Out of the box, you can set up the BlackRapid Yeti in no time. It’s easier to put on than a harness.

The BlackRapid Yeti sets up quickly. Over the time using it, I generally would put the cameras on the strap before I put it in a bag. If I only wanted to use one camera, the second camera did not have to come out the bag. I hung my main camera on my right hand side with the secondary camera on the left. I did a wedding with the Yeti and it worked like a charm. I work in all black so the strap blended in. The strap did not move on my shirt at all.

When I just wanted to carry one camera, I just popped off the second strap and went along my way. I could have added the extra support of the body stabilizer, but the Yeti was fine without it.

I  started carrying two cameras on my nature photo walks (see top image). One camera was affixed with a wide angle lens and the other one with a zoom. It was nice not to change lenses in the field as often. I do realize I could have put a super zoom on my camera, but since I like to shoot with prime lenses for particular things, this came in handy.

Conclusions

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I shoot a lot with a Nikon D700. It uses a CF card only. On events I like to share some photos in real-time, and having the ability to have a smaller one within arms reach is really convenient. The BlackRapid Yeti has a lot going for it: looks, functionality, and a nice bit of cool factor.

You don’t have to stop with just cameras either. You can also use a flash as well on the second strap opening up lighting possibilities. If you have to carry two cameras around and you don’t want the feeling of a harness then this is the strap for you. Also If you are like me and just want to walk with your camera out, the Black Rapid Yeti is a good choice.

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Gevon Servo

Gevon Servo aka @GServo is an eclectic, NJ/NY Photographer. He’s a Nikon shooter, by choice nevertheless, will always test any piece of photography equipment. He believes that like ‘Photography’, ‘Coffee’,’Beer’ and ‘Comics Books’ and other things ‘Geek’ “You must try everything once to discover what you want to try again.