This is a list of my current equipment. As my blog expands I will be offering some more reviews on some of the things on here but in the mean time if you have any questions feel free to send me an e-mail.
Where to buy the best gear ?
Typically I buy my gear from either B&H Photo or Amazon and occasionally Adorama. I’ve experienced exceptional customer service from all three at some point or other and can wholeheartedly recommend all of them. I have a customized Amazon store that might help you find what you are looking for.
If you happen to be looking for camera bags for general use or sports photography use then I would definitely recommend checking out Think Tank Photo. You’ll see in my gear list below that I have a number of their carrying solutions in my closet for when I’m traveling or shooting at sporting events which is where their gear really excels. I’m happy to tell you that as a friend of the site and follower of my work, Think Tank Photo will offer you a FREE gift of a small bag or accessory when you purchase more then $50 worth of stuff from their store after clicking through one of my links!
You’ll also notice that I use DROBO storage. If you are looking to buy something from them you can enter the coupon code DANCARRPHOTO when you checkout and you will receieve up to $150 off depending on which product you are purchasing.
What am I currently shooting with ?
- Canon EOS 1D Mark IV – I’d say at the moment 90% of my work is done with this camera. I’ve been extremely pleased with it’s ISO performance and AF tracking for motorsports work.
- Canon EOS 5D Mark II – I use this as a backup on my skiing trips and as a second body when I’m shooting sports. It’s also perfect for product and portrait shooting as the files are very slightly more detailed than those from the 1D4.
- Fujifilm FinePix X100 – This is my walk around camera for when I don’t want to carry my big SLR kit. The detailed images it produces are phenomenal considering the small size of the camera. There are plenty of images in my archive shot with this camera and I defy you to try and pick them out from the rest! I’ve done a detailed review on this camera on the blog.
- Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS - A fantastic lens for adventurous pursuits because it packs a large range into a small and relatively lightweight package. Produces very sharp images, perfect for backcountry skiing expeditions. See my full review on the blog.
- Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II – A pro photographer’s staple lens. Heavier and larger than the 70-300 but with a much faster AF performance and of course f2.8 max aperture. See my full review on the blog.
- Canon EF 24mm f/1.4L II USM – I’d have to say that this is probably my favorite Canon lens. I bought it when they first came out with the new MKII version and instantly fell in love. It’s incredibly difficult to use wide open as f1.4 leaves absolutely no margin for error but it’s razor sharp across the board. My go-to wide angle to carry around at any event.
- Canon EF 300mm f/2.8L IS II US – A lens that’s done great work for me and my ski photography. I purchased this before my first trip to Alaska and I use it whenever we are using helicopters or snowmobiles to access zones in the winter. When I’m skiing at a resort I tend to go with the lighter weight 70-300 as this thing is a beast to have on your back all day on the piste!
- Canon 500mm f/4L EF IS II USM – A 500mm telephoto is what I would call a great multipurpose super telephoto lens. Lightweight enough that I can get out and shoot wildlife with it in British Columbia if I want to, and long enough that it will give me the filed of view I need at the race track. It’s also considerably smaller and lighter weight than the 600mm which is an important consideration of you also want to travel with the 300mm in an age where airlines try and make it very difficult to take these things on the plane with you.
- Canon EF 8-15mm f/4L Fisheye USM – This is a bit of a niche lens, a fisheye lens is not something you can use all the time as it has a very unique look but when you find the right time it can do wanders for a scene. This new unique lens from Canon is actually a zoom lens that will allow you to get both a full frame and circular fisheye look on one camera. See my full review on the blog.
- Canon 1.4x EF Extender III (Teleconverter) – No huge improvement over the MKII version in terms of image quality but a definite improvement in AF tracking when used with the newer MKII super tele lenses. See my full review on the blog.
- Canon 2x EF Extender III (Teleconverter) – The 2x can be quite sharp if you use it in the right light but AF performance is lacking so I don’t tend to use it for motorsports but have had great success with some ski imagery where I’m not using autofocus.
- Canon EF 17-40mm f/4L USM – This was my first ever lens and I still have it to this day. Canon’s best value L lens. Sharp , bomb proof and lightweight. Great for skiing with.
- Canon EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS – One of Canon’s sharpest lenses without a doubt. I use this for product shoots when I need to get in close and show some details. See my full review on the blog.
- 3 x Pocketwizard PLUS II – Pretty standard transceivers in the industry these days. The range is rarely even 1/10th of what they claim they are capable of but for the moment there is nothing out there that does a better job….
- Pocketwizard TT5 – I have a love hate relationship with this little thing. The range of it is beyond poor in my experience but it allows the use of Hypersync which can get you a much faster flash sync speed. I’ve had my ranger syncing at 1/1000 of a second across the whole frame but I find it finicky to set up.
- Pocketwizard Multimax – Necessary for large sporting event with lots of photographers when the standard 4 channels are not enough. A Multimax has 32 channels.
- Elinchrom Ranger RX – A portable power house ! 1100W/S of flash power will overpower the sun on a bluebird day. Also weather sealed so I can leave it out in the snow all day and not even give it a second thought. I’m not sure what I’d do without it.
- Elinchrom Ranger A-Head – Faster flash duration than the S-Head. Necessary shooting sports with the Ranger.
- 4 x Nikon Speedlights – Nikon speedlights for a Canon shooter ? Yep! I don’t use these ones on camera so it doesn’t matter wheat brand they are. Nikon speedlights have a faster flash duration at full power than any Canon speedlights. I plug them into Pocketwizards and use them on manual.
- Canon 580EX – For on camera event use when it’s a last resort. I always prefer to shoot with natural light if I can but sometimes you can’t get around it and in that case you have to go with a Canon strobe on camera for fast and dirty work.
- Lots and lots of assorted gadgets and gizmos…..
Bags and miscellaneous acessories
- F-Stop backpacks - I’ve covered these packs extensively on my blog as I had a small hand in some of their features over the years when they sought my opinion as part of their pro team. I have a closet full of packs for every occasion so check out the reviews on my blog to get a better idea on all of them.
- Think Tank Airport Airstream – These guys make the best roller bags in the business hands down. Attend any large sporting event and the press room is literally FULL of them. The Airstream is the smallest one but it still holds most of what I need for a sporting assignment yet its small enough to fit under the seat in front of me if the overhead bins are full.
- Think Tank Skin System - Again these guys make the industry standard in belt systems for event photographers. The Skin System works well for me as it packs down very small in you bag when you fly. See the full review on my blog.
- Gura Gear bags – The Chobe shoulder bag is without doubt a premium product with a price to match BUT it is the best travel companion for a photographer. Lightweight and large enough to carry cameras and lenses as well as laptop, iPad and all your travel accessories. All Gura Gear bags are made from ultra lightweight sail cloth to help you get closer to the baggage weight limits of today’s airlines. I’ve also used the excellent Kiboko 22L which allows me to carry both a 300mm AND a 500mm + 2 cameras in the same bag and still have it come within hand luggage restrictions.
- Really Right Stuff Support – RRS make phenomenal quality support gear. I use the BH40 ballhead and their excellent monopod head as well with RRS plates on all my long lenses and camera bodies. The quality of their machine work is second to none, you just want to hold it in your hand all day long – it’s THAT good!
In the office
- Mac Pro - I run a hexcore Mac Pro with 16GB of Ram in the office. It’s a beast and honestly it’s overkill most of the time but every now and again when I’m doing six things at once it comes into play and saves me a ton of time. I love being able to switch drives in and out as needed with the 4 internal bays.
- 11? Macbook Air – The 2011 Macbook Airs are powerful enough to handle the duties of a photographer on the road. I have no need for critical color correction when I’m away so the less than highly accurate screen is not an issue for me. I love how small this thing is though, it can disappear into nearly any camera bag and you’ll forget it’s even there. I wouldn’t recommend this though unless you have a second computer at home. If you don’t then the 15? Macbook Pro would be better for you.
- Drobo – By far the easiest mass storage device on the market today. Just slot the drives in and out as you need to expand or if one of the drives fails. Use coupon code DANCARRPHOTO for up to $150 discount when purchase online from their store.