We get a lot of questions about what equipment we use and why, so we created this equipment guide to share with you all of our camera gear!
Canon 6D: This is the camera we've used for pretty much every single photo you see on our Instagram. It is GREAT in low-light situations, which we love, because we love shooting right before and right after sunset, so when the sun starts to disappear, you can still capture some great images after sunset. The 6D is a full-frame camera, so it will give you a professional leg up. We tend to stick to Canon, because it captures color so well and it’s honestly just what we’ve always used, and we’ve never had any problems with them, so we’re brand loyal.
Canon 5D Mark IV: This is definitely an investment, but there are so many reasons why it is worth it. With a touch screen back and focus tracking, it makes it a great camera for both photo and video. It can also shoot 1080p in 60fps, making it great for smooth, slow footage. This is definitely our top choice if you're wanting to focus on both photo and video.
Sigma Art 35mm f/1.4: I love the 35mm lens. It's great for both portraits and capturing landscape. This is a fixed lens, so you can’t zoom, but it's a great length for being able to capture both people and the background, which makes it great for traveling! With the low f-stop, it makes it possible for you to get those very soft and creamy bokeh backgrounds. This is the lens we use for pretty much everything.
Canon 24-70mm f/2.8: This is a great lens to get wide angle and zoom shots all in one lens. This is a great lens for traveling, because you have a variety of options when you shoot. You can choose to zoom in at 70mm, or go for a wide angle shot at 24mm. It doesn't work quite as well in low light as the 35mm, because it has a higher f-stop, but it does allow for a bit more versatility since it's not a fixed lens.
Canon 16-35mm f/2.8: This lens will give you and even wider angle and allow you to capture more in the shot. We don't have this lens, but it's our next investment for sure.
DJI Phantom 4 Pro: We love love love our DJI Phantom 4 Pro. Drones give you the opportunity to capture a whole different perspective and they really give you the chance to capture video and photos at the next level. The Phantom 4 Pro can capture 4K video at 60 fps, which means you can get very cinematic smooth, slow motion footage, which is one of the main reasons why we chose it.
DJI Mavic Air: The Mavic Air is a great alternative and very convenient for travelers, because it’s so small and light! It literally fits in your hand which makes it super easy to travel with and easy to set up and take off. It doesn't have quite as good of a camera as the Phantom 4 Pro, but it still has awesome features that make it worth it. If you want to learn more about drones and which drone is the best drone for you, check out our blog post about which drone to buy.
DJI Ronin: This is the stabilizer that we use to get really smooth and precise video footage. It uses sensors and motors to turn your camera and hold its stable even when your hands are moving, which allows you to capture shots without the bumps and jolts that come with human error. This gimbal definitely requires quite the set up and is pretty heavy, so this is better for when you're not traveling.
Zhiyun Crane 2: This is a handheld gimbal, which basically does the same thing as the DJI Ronin, but it's definitely easier to travel with. This is the gimbal we use for shooting videos while we're traveling. It even has a feature that makes it much easier to do hyper lapses, so it really takes your video footage to the next level.
Glide Cam: This is a much cheaper and more basic gimbal option. Your camera rests on it and you then add weights which will hold the camera steady. So it's not as advanced as the Ronin or the Crane 2, but it definitely allows you to get smooth shots.
SD Card: Make sure it’s a class 10 and at least 95 MB/s, so it can read your photos and video footage fast enough to write it on the card. There’s nothing worse than spending time shooting photo or video and going home to see that your SD card failed and you don’t have any of the shots you thought you had. This is the exact SD card we use, and we haven’t had any problems with it yet. We also suggest getting 64 GB, because then you'll have enough space for 1-2 days of shooting.
External Storage: We always work off of a backup drive. We have so many RAW photos and so much video footage that there’s no way that we could store it all on our computers. We could use cloud based back-up systems, but honestly who knows exactly how that works? I like being able to access the full files immediately whenever I want. Be careful with external hard drives, because they have moving parts that spin inside, so they can mechanically fail if you drop it or throw it around. I’d recommend getting the additional 2-year recovery warranty if for nothing more than peace-of-mind, because it costs around $2,000 to recover your photos off of a failed back up drive.
ND Filter: An ND (neutral density) filter, is absolutely key for being able to shoot video footage at the same frame rate no matter what time of day it is. It neutralizes the light, so that you can keep the shutter speed the same without letting too much light in. It also allows you to take long exposure pictures during the day, like those really pretty smooth waterfall photos.
Step Up Rings: Step-up rings make it possible for you to put your ND filter on your different lenses, no matter what size they are. This way you’re not limited to only being able to use the ND filter with one lens.
Atlas Supply Co. Backpack: We love this backpack, because it has space for our laptop, camera, extra lenses, and there’s even a pocket for our passport and water bottle. The best part is--it’s actually comfortable when you're wearing all day exploring!
Your equipment isn't crucial to your being a beautiful photographer or film maker, but it will definitely help aid you in your process.
That being said, not everything is about equipment. You can make awesome videos with an iPhone or take incredible photos with a disposable camera. What's most important is that you get to know your equipment, learn what it can do, and practice with it every day, and you'll become and even better creator.
xoxo, Sam & Ryan