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Creator, Guide

10 Must-Have Items to Carry in a Photographer's Backpack

Jun 22, 2023

Author: ASUS    Reading time: 6 minutes

a young photographer taking a photo while outdoors with an ROG Archer Backpack 17 camera backpack on his back

Jun 22, 2023

Whether you are a photography enthusiast, a traveling photographer, a content creator, or a professional photo- or videographer, packing for an outdoor photoshoot or a session away from your usual working location means bringing a whole array of accessories with you.

This list can help you make sure you have everything you need to be ready for any scenario and any shoot without compromises, wherever you go.

Lenses and Filters for Different Shooting Locations and Scenarios

There is perhaps nothing more important to bring with you than alternative lenses.

To be able to capture mind-blowing images or footage in any scenario, any light conditions, with varying depths, you will need a variety of lenses.

For instance, if you are setting off to capture portraits, you'll probably want to use a 50 mm variant. For landscape shots, you'll want a wide-angle lens with focal lengths ranging from, say, 16-35 mm ― though some can be as wide as 10-14 mm. For action shots, you may want to opt for an altogether separate action camera or use a 16-36 mm lens. A 70-200 mm focal point lens may prove great for wildlife shots or other subjects you may want to capture from a distance.

Lens Cleaning Kit

To ensure the clearest and cleanest (pun intended) shots, you may want to bring a lens cleaning kit. The key items can be collected separately or bought in a bundle. Usually, it includes a microfiber cloth or two, an air blower, a soft brush, special paper lens tissues, and lens-cleaning liquid.

Don't skimp on these, and make sure you buy products marked as suitable for lenses. A small mistake here can mean a scratched surface of the lens, which can translate into smudgy shots, and end up forcing you to splash quite a sum on a new lens.

Collapsible Tripod or Camera Stabilizer

If you can’t trust your hands with the stability required for perfect shots, you will want to bring a tripod. It’s a great accessory for taking shots of yourself or for shots requiring stability ― for example, long-exposure shots. It’s also essential if you’re looking to combine a few shots into one, and need a consistent background.

For videographers who need to capture on the move but avoid shaky images, a gimbal or some other kind of camera stabilizing mount is a good option.

Either way, the quality of your photos or footage will increase with something to help you steady your shots.

Camera Attachments

Plenty of accessories are available on the market to help you capture perfect images and videos.

One such accessory is a camera flash. This attachment provides needed lighting when you’re on the go and lacking the array of lights available in the studio.

If your field is video, you may also consider an external microphone. Again, your camera likely has one built-in, but for clear and rich sound, you’ll want to invest in an external shotgun mic.

Remote Shutter Controller

Many photo- and videographers need help with “pressing the button”. When no other person is with you to provide such support, a remote shutter is what you need.

This accessory is a must for those looking to take shots of themselves, and it’s also useful for those looking to take action shots or capture scenes when standing directly behind your camera isn’t possible. It’s also great for long exposure shots, as it helps you avoid camera shake when handling.

Spare Batteries and Backup SD Cards

When on the go, you need backup power.

First of all, to ensure your shoot doesn’t end abruptly because your camera ran out of juice, make sure to bring a couple of charged spare batteries. A power bank may also be an option, but just swapping a battery to a fresh, charged one will be faster and more convenient.

Lighting Accessories

Ensuring proper lighting when shooting can be a challenge—especially when shooting outdoors. When natural light is insufficient, a portable LED light or a light stick may help brighten things up. This is a great accessory that can also be used to create highlights or light-streak effects. You won’t regret having one in your backpack.

Many creators also like to bring a pocket RBG light with them to an outdoor shoot to achieve various light effect, such as sunset, sunrise, campfire, or lightning strike. Especially since certain natural light sources—fire, for instance—often don’t provide enough light for achieving desired effects.

If you wish (and have enough space in the backpack), you can also bring a light meter. However, the light meters built into modern cameras prove good enough for most users.

Specialized Laptop

Your camera comes with a small screen that can help you take a quick look at your shots; but when it comes to carefully evaluating or editing your work in the field or after the shoot, you'll need a laptop. And you’ll want to make sure that your laptop has the power and features you need—such as those found in a creator laptop from ASUS. ASUS laptops for creators come with a vivid, bright Lumina OLED display that is Pantone™ Validated for color accuracy. They also pack powerful CPUs and dedicated graphics cards so you can edit and render, lag-free, wherever you are. And importantly, they feature an ASUS Dial or DialPad—a rotary input device that can help you quickly and intuitively adjust various parameters like color grading or hue in creative software such as Adobe Creative Cloud apps. These laptops also offer plenty of I/O ports (including a built-in speedy SD express 7.0 card reader and a fast Thunderbolt™ 4 port)* to make sure you can easily connect everything you need.

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*available I/O ports may vary between models

Storage Options

Image and video files can take up a lot of space. You may notice the available storage on the your camera shrink very quickly as the shoot progresses. This is where additional memory cards come in handy. If you’re recording videos, just make sure your SD card can support the speed you need.

Similarly, when you start transferring the files to your laptop during the shoot, you may quickly run out of space. That’s when you will appreciate having an external drive. When shopping for one, go for as much storage space as you can afford (1 TB or above is recommended), and look for a rugged, shock-proof design. You may choose an SSD if you’re looking for transfer speed, or HDD if you’re looking for more space.

Fast-Transfer Cable

When shooting away from your workstation, time is money. Likewise, when transferring files between your camera and laptop, speed matters.

Often overlooked, a fast-transfer cable can make a huge difference. It can enable you to see your photos or footage on a larger screen directly, during the shoot, and it allows you to show the work to clients immediately.

For this, you’ll need a device with a range of I/O ports ― especially key is a Thunderbolt™ 4 slot, which is featured on many ASUS creator laptops. To take full advantage of this type of fast connection, you will also need a Thunderbolt™ 4 cable.

Don’t hesitate to invest in a top-notch Thunderbolt™ 4 cable. Also, try to get a durable one—this way, you won't have to swap it for a new one any time soon!

Bonus: Drone for Aerial Shots

As technology moves forward and becomes more affordable, drones are something to consider ― especially since commercial and FPV drones become ever-smaller and therefore more portable.

These devices can help you take shots from above and capture images from perspectives that would otherwise be impossible. It’s an amazing tool for action or sport shots, wildlife shots, or even for capturing “behind the scenes” footage that your target audience will surely appreciate.

Pack Right!

With this list, you can make sure you have everything you need to shoot in any scenario or any location where your next adventure or assignment may take you.

The last key thing to consider is how to safely carry all of your gear. Of course, you can bring a backpack with a laptop sleeve and a rain cover and a separate camera bag for your photography equipment. Wouldn’t it be lovely to have it all in one place, though? For that, you’ll want a peak design everyday backpack that was made with creators in mind.

One great example of such is the ROG Archer Backpack 17. This water-resistant roll top backpack allows photo- and videographers to carry all their gear more securely, thanks to an adjustable main camera compartment and a laptop compartment. It even has dedicated tripod straps at the bottom, and its side straps can be used to mount a drone or other accessories. With various gear access points, including a quick-access side pocket, it’s very convenient to carry and use your whole photography arsenal, as well as bring all other essentials, such as a water bottle. Additionally, chest straps help maintain top level comfort. Make sure to take a look!

When you have all your equipment packed safely, you’ll be ready to embark on your creative journey. Good luck!

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