Op-Tech 'Shower Cap'

Op-tech makes an extraordinary array of photo accessories in neoprene, the sort of material that divers' wet suits are made of. They are perhaps best known for their camera straps, which really do make heavy cameras easier to carry by making them feel lighter; we use them on SLRs, but for our rangefinder cameras, which are much lighter, we use Artist and Artisan. We also use their individual camera cases to protect our cameras when travelling.

Here we are concerned with their neoprene lens caps. The official name for these is 'Hood Hats', which describes them very well: they are designed to fit over a lens hood, protecting the front of the lens both from knocks (neoprene is a very good shock absorber) and from rain, dust, etc. We use mostly the Micro (2.5 inch/64mm)) and Mini (3 inch/76mm) on our rangefinder cameras but there are many larger sizes from Small (3.5 inch -- 89mm) to XXL which is downright huge.

 

hood-hat 1

 

 

hood hat 2

They have many advantages. They're light, (relatively) cheap, can be pulled off and stuffed in a pocket in an instant, and offer excellent protection. They don't break, chip or scratch; they can freely be swapped between lenses of roughly the same size; and provided you have a back-cap on the lens they offer nearly as much protection as a lens case, especially in the pocket of a photographer's vest. It's worth buying several for this alone. We have three Minis and keep meaning to buy another three; a Small goes nicely on the standard zoom on our Nikon DSLR.

OpTech's web-site is www.optech.com.

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© 2008 Roger W. Hicks