I can’t remember the last time I used a stock strap made by a camera manufacturer. Not only are most of them ungainly in appearance, they are often ill-fitting and uncomfortable. What’s also highly inconvenient, in most cases, is the amount of time it takes to adjust or readjust the length of such straps. Should you ever want to take them off the camera, be prepared to work your fingers overtime. Making these issues a thing of the past is the FALCAM Maglink Quick Magnetic Buckle Shoulder Strap Lite. We can’t say it’s the most original design visually. However, it does a convenient and dependable job for what it promises.
Table of Contents
The Big Picture
At first glance, you’d be forgiven for thinking this was a strap from the factories of Peak Design. This was what fellow photographer Akhil Vinayak Menon felt too when he saw this in an Instagram story I posted. While the quick-release mounts don’t look too similar, the material used and its concept would remind many of their Slide Lite and Leash models. But when it comes to removing the Falcam Maglink Strap Lite from your camera, it’s faster by miles. You can add the Arca standard Quick Release Kit V2 to your setup to make it even faster. The Falcam Maglink is also considerably faster to adjust the length of the straps with your cameras attached to them. I would know too, because I’ve used the Peak Design Leash for some years. Falcam’s strap races past the Peak Design straps in the speed, usage, and adjustment department.
They come in a variety of colors, some of them nontraditional but nevertheless appealing. The magnetic links make the straps very handy, especially for professionals who might often need to take their cameras off their shoulders and onto a gimbal. My initial apprehension about the strength of those buckles was put to rest soon enough. There is absolutely no way the strap can slide off them. The only way to get it off is if you intentionally remove what they call the “tail buckle,” or the strong rope, off the magnetic buckle. I only wish the strap was a little thicker. I think more photographers would be comfortable with the design this way. Falcam can shake up the strap market with its new series. This sleek design is my favorite looking one of the lot.
The Falcam Maglink Lite shoulder strap gets four out of five stars from me.
- Lightweight and stylish
- Doesn’t weigh down on your neck at all
- Super quick magnetic buckles for attaching and detaching the straps from your camera
- The sliding length adjustment mechanism is super fast.
- Comes in 4 eye-catching colors – Gray, Pine Needle Green, Night Blue, and Iris Purple
- The optional F38 quick-release kit V2 is an excellent addon for photographers who use tripods a lot.
- At USD 29.99, it’s much more affordable than similarly designed competitors’ straps.
- Comes with an extra pair of loop straps
- The strap material could have been at least 30% thicker to inspire initial user confidence.
- The thinness of the strap also makes the edges curl upwards after even some light usage.
- At the risk of reducing some of the length-adjustment speed, the pull-on tabs could have had something to tuck them away in place and prevent them from sticking out noticeably.
I mostly used the Falcam Maglink Quick Magnetic Buckle Shoulder Strap Lite with my Nikon Z6 II. This had the Nikon Z 24-120 f4 S lens at times and the Viltrox 35mm f1.8 Z lens otherwise. The Falcam F38 Quick Release Kit V2 was also used during some testing periods.
Packaged quite neatly in a cardboard box with a magnetic cover, Falcam’s Maglink Shoulder Strap Lite is made of a type of Nylon called PA66. At its shortest, its 79 cm long (31 in) and can be extended to almost twice this length at 145 cm (57.1 in).
I’m almost 5’6 and preferred having the strap shorter, but not at its shortest length. This was perfect for me to even sling it along the side of my chest and not have it hanging on my neck at all times.
The key feature of this strap, which gives it its name, is the magnetic buckle system. While it might seem like the connector could easily slip out of the buckle at first glance, my experience with the strap effectively proved otherwise. Once the wire loop is magnetically attached to the buckle, there is absolutely no way for it to slip off. It cannot even be pushed out from under. The only way to disengage it is to manually pull it from the top.
It took a few days for me to build confidence in this system, but after that, I didn’t seem to worry about it. The strap buckles never felt like they would come apart. Whenever I wanted to remove the camera from the strap, it took much less time than I would have if it was connected to the Peak Design Leash.
For those who’d rather not hang the strap around their necks and would prefer to use it more like a sling across their torso, the F38 Quick Release Kit V2 is the best addon.
Once you attach the Arca standard base plate to the underside of your camera, you can loop the tail buckle loops to the plate that clicks over it. Removing the strap off the camera then is only a matter of pressing the two buttons on the side to release it from the Arca plate
Peak Design’s Leash model is definitely thicker, but to the Falcam Maglink’s advantage, it definitely feels lighter. After a few days of using it, you don’t even notice it on your neck.
It’s not easy to explain this, but I wish the strap didn’t curl so easily around the areas that hang over your neck or shoulders. This just makes it look like a cheap-quality strap, which by no means it is. If it was thicker, I think it would have remained more taut. I feel the next edition of this strap should use slightly thicker material. The material hasn’t frayed at all to its credit, but I would have preferred it to be just a bit thicker.
Ease of Use
The Maglink buckle snaps into place with a reassuring click. There’s no need for you to guide it into place; just bring the two ends close to each other, and voila, you’re all set to head out for your photoshoots. This differs from the Peak Design Leash strap, where you must slide the links in place. I spent some time yanking the ends and trying to see if my camera would fall off but to no avail. The Falcam Maglink strap’s magnetic links are designed very innovatively to ensure that you can’t ever blame them for your camera crashing to the ground while it’s on your person.
I preferred having the camera on my side, so the Quick Release Kit V2 setup worked better. You need to press this on both sides to release the plate, so here too, there’s no chance you could accidentally engage the release mechanism.
Adjusting the strap length is as simple as pulling on these tabs and dragging them upward or downward. There is one on each side.
I only wish that Falcam had provided some way to tuck these away. They often stick out away from your body and can be an eyesore.
The loops couldn’t go through the tiny eyelets on my Yashica Electro 35. If you want one of these for your film camera, this is something to be aware of.
Falcam Maglink Strap Lite Vs. Peak Design Leash
I didn’t test out the grey version of the Falcam Maglink Lite model, but if you put that one next to the grey Peak Design Leash, it would be tough to tell them apart from a distance. But the Leash model is visibly thicker when closely looking at them. The Maglink Strap Lite is still as comfortable and sits quite firmly on your neck without sliding around on its own. Disconnecting the strap from your camera is much faster, even if you aren’t using the Quick Release plate addon.
At around half the price of the Peak Design Leash, the Falcam Maglink has a lot going for it. It’s comfy, fast to adjust, and has more color variations for you to choose from. Aside from the strap thickness, I’ve got no real complaints. For those who prefer broader straps, they also do a few larger strap models.