Hundreds of accessories pass through our reviewers’ hands every year, so with Christmas fast approaching we’ve picked some of our favourites under £150
Manfrotto Lumimuse 8 Bluetooth LEDs
Manfrotto Lumimuse LEDs are compact, inexpensive and high-performance lights for the enthusiast photographer. Rather than having lots of small LEDs, they feature Manfrotto’s super-bright surface-mount LED technology. Download the free Lumimuse App onto your mobile device and you’ll be able to control the light remotely with ease. Features of the app include the option for flash, timers, photo and video modes and complete control over 0-100% dimming. Powered by built-in lithium-ion batteries that conveniently recharge via Micro USB, it also comes with a hotshoe mount and a standard 6.4mm thread, providing good compatibility with accessories that you may already own. Filter kits are also available and cost £17 each.
Mophie PowerStation XXL powerbank
With more and more of today’s cameras supporting in-camera charging via USB, it makes a lot of sense to pack a powerbank as part of your kit. This large-capacity powerbank features a 20,000mAh battery, weighs 428g and has the option of being able to charge devices simultaneously via its three USB ports. The power-indicator button displays the charging status and current battery life. It has a durable aluminium finish.
Price: from £60
TimeLine Events might not be an accessory, but one of its events would make a great gift for yourself or a friend who’s keen on capturing some slightly different images. It’s known for organising some of the best photo events across the country and specialises in recreating scenes from a bygone era with re-enactors adding an extra human interest. Different events focusing on British transport and industrial heritage dating back to the Victorians are run along the length and breadth of the country. With restricted numbers at each event you’re guaranteed to capture unique images.
Gift vouchers are available online and AP readers are entitled to a 10% discount on their first booking with the code CW1016.
The Hähnel ProCube2 is a dual battery charger based around the same concept as the original ProCube, with a sturdy metal shell and interchangeable plates that each accept a pair of batteries. The battery holders clip into place and the LCD display helpfully shows how much charge has been fed into each battery. An in-car charger is also supplied. It even has a high-power 2.4A USB output for charging phones or tablets once the camera batteries are full.
Jessops Academy photography experiences
Price: from £99
Jessops runs a wide variety of experiences as well as full-day courses, which are designed with a hands-on practical approach. If you’re a beginner looking to get a better understanding of how your camera works there are introductory courses, whereas for more advanced photographers there is a good selection of workshops that cover a range of genres and themes such as portraiture, motorsport, macro and wedding photography. If you’d like to get away for longer why not consider taking a residential photography break? Jessops offers a good selection of photography-related trips, with weekend breaks starting from as little as £299.
Wacom Intuos Small
If you spend time editing your images and would like to take more precise control of the cursor, a pen tablet such as the Wacom Intuos S is worth owning. This entry-level tablet is aimed at those who may have never used a pen tablet before. It provides a battery-free pressure-sensitive pen that’s designed to suit both left- and right- handed users. If you’re willing to spend £17 more than the most basic model you can buy a version with Bluetooth connectivity built-in.
Walkstool Comfort 45L
This Swedish-made Walkstool Comfort is not the cheapest option, but stands out due to its two-section telescopic legs that make it taller and more comfortable than many alternatives, while still being lightweight and portable. The mesh seat material means it won’t pool water in wet conditions, plus it’s available in four sizes of various heights.
Tenba DNA 10 Messenger bag
A small, messenger-style bag, the Tenba DNA 10 is designed for a mirrorless system, plus tablet. Made from premium-quality materials, right down to the Quiet Closure Velcro used for the flap (allowing you to open the bag almost silently – great for wedding or wildlife photographers), the bag has magnetic clips that snap into position without you having to look at what you’re doing. The camera compartment has three sections, for a camera with lens attached and two lenses either side. Inside the main compartment is a zipped pocket, and smaller pockets for accessories.
Fujifilm Instax SQ6
Instant photography has seen a huge resurgence in recent years. With cheap cameras like the Instax SQ6 you shouldn’t expect a great number of features, yet it has everything you need to capture fun, entertaining moments at social events with a click of a button. The small optical viewfinder gives a very approximate view of the picture you’re going to get, and you’ll need to employ the flash when shooting indoors or in poor light. Prints show well-judged exposure and strong, saturated colours, with the final image taking around five minutes to fully develop. Instax square film costs £9 for a pack of 10 shots or £17 for a 2×10-shot twin-pack. For a cheaper alternative check out the Instax Mini (£75).
Hold Fast Camera Swagg
The Camera Swagg has the same design as the Hold Fast Money Maker, albeit made from a non-leather material. High-grade cotton canvas, anchored metal d-rings, safety straps connected to the side lug mount, completely bypassing the clip and screw for ultimate security, makes this an essential accessory for those who shoot with two cameras off the hip. It can be paired with a camera leash to create a three-camera set-up. One size fits all, available in blue, copper, red or black.
Syrp Super Dark Variable ND
Price: from £139
As variable ND filters go, this is one of the best. It sandwiches two polarisers, to prevent between 5 and 10 stops of light (ND32- ND1024) penetrating the lens, and is available in large or small. The large kit includes two step-up rings (77mm and 72mm) to fit the 82mm thread; the small kit has a 67mm thread and provides 58mm and 52mm step-up rings. It delivers neutral colour and is beautifully presented in a leather case.
Western Digital My Passport Wireless Pro 1TB
If you like to back up your images as you shoot, this is one of the best portable backup solutions and is available with different storage options from 1TB to 4TB. Pop your SD card in at the side, press the copy button and it’ll back up your photos with no fuss. View your shots on a phone or tablet using its in-built Wi-Fi connectivity.
Lowepro PhotoStream RL 150
The PhotoStream RL 150 is the most affordable rolling case in Lowepro’s range. It has two large interior pockets, a sleeve to store a 15in laptop and interior dividers that offer good cushioning and customisation to fit your camera kit as you want. It’s extremely smooth to pull along and the overall construction can’t be faulted, suggesting it’ll survive many years of heavy use.