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Review: PIXEL TD-381 TD-382 TD-384 Speedlite Speedlight Flash Battery Pack



Overview : Flashgun Battery Power Pack for Speedlite/Speedlight flashes. The external flashgun battery pack improves flash recycle times significantly and increases the number of firings before batteries need to be replaced. It can be loaded with up to 8 AA-size batteries - alkaline, lithium, or Ni-MH - prior to a shoot to ensure fast and smooth transitions from one battery set to the next - important in critical shooting situations or to keep up momentum in the studio.

Features :
  • TD-381 for Canon; TD-382 for Nikon (SB-900); TD-383 for Nikon (SB-800 & older); TD-384 for Sony
  • It uses two groups of symmetrical charge system and have more stable charging voltage. It charges time twice as fast as any other battery pack.
  • Flexible and convenient design. You can use 4 or 8 AA batteries freely.
  • It uses a new charging method. You get a fastest recharge when using 8 AA batteries.
  • It saves more than 25% power consumption in stand-by mode compared with other similar products.

Quality/Usability : I've been looking for a flash battery pack to help with longer shoots and quicker refresh rates. I've looked at Quantum battery packs but they're at the top of the price range and I've looked at OEM battery packs which are a bit pricey. The Pixel battery pack caught my attention because people have used them with no complaints and the price was in my price range (I purchased mine used). The 8 cell external packs greatly reduce your flashes recycle time and the need for battery changes.

As a reminder, even with these battery packs, it still requires a set of batteries in the flash to power the controls and LCD etc. The battery pack plugs into a socket on the flash and bypasses all the normal circuitry delivering high voltage straight to the flash capacitor. This is how it delivers the fast recharge times.


Nothing much is included. Since mine was purchased used, it only came with the pouch and battery pack and tray. A new product would come with what was mentioned as well as manual and camera connecting screw.


Like any 3rd party item, the quality is sub-par compared to OEM Canon or Nikon versions, but it will do just fine. The pack has a hole that allows you to screw the battery pack to the bottom of your camera with the supplied camera connecting screw (not pictured).


The pack has two LED's on one end of the pack, one for each charging circuit. They blink constantly while on standby and turn solid while recharging the flash. The flash still requires batteries to be inserted into the flash to power controls and LCD. The battery pack will mainly focus on providing the flash output and recycle time.


To remove the battery tray, simply push the button and slide it out. When you push the tray back into the battery pack, it automatically locks into place.


The battery tray slides smoothly and once locked in place, it won't budge. It's designed as 2 sets of 4 batteries, one set at the top and the other set on the bottom. This makes it easy to identify which are a set and when you recharge them. The batteries are easy to insert and remove.

The Pixel pack also has a unique dual charging circuit which helps to achieve those fast recycle speeds. This also means you can use just 4 instead of the full 8 AA batteries if needed.

When using only 4 batteries in the pack it doesn't matter which side you put them in, the LED on that side will double blink to show there's only the one circuit with batteries running.


The padded case has two openings. One end uses velcro flap and the other end uses a button flap. The button flap end allows you to remove the battery tray without taking the entire battery pack out of the case. The back of the case has a belt slot that allows you to put a belt through it and 2 holes on the top so that you can still see the LED's.

Conclusion : Overall, the PIXEL TD-381 TD-382 TD-384 Speedlite Speedlight Flash Battery Pack is a must own accessory if you need quick recycling time. At first, I was hesitant of buying a battery pack that runs off of AA batteries because I thought it wouldn't last long. But I was proven wrong. This can last a full event and probably more depending on how much you use. I love the fact that it can still run and power your flash on four batteries. And if you run out of power, you can easily swap it out for a fresh set of batteries.

The battery pack gives off a slight buzzing sound. I did a quick search online and it seems to be normal.




Manufacturer: Pixel
Site: Buy from Amazon (Canon) / Buy from Amazon (Nikon SB-900) / Buy from Amazon (SB-800 & older) / Buy from Amazon (Sony)

Review: Luma Labs Loop 3 Camera Sling Strap



Overview : We've combined our trademark shoulder leather pad and our quick adjust sliders from the Cinch with an all new offset camera mount. The result is the most stable carry a sling can provide.

Features :
  • Trademark shoulder leather pad
  • Quick adjust sliders from the Cinch
  • All new offset camera mount
  • Precision machined from 7075-T6 aluminum
  • Quick adjustability
  • 100% USA made

Quality/Usability : Luma Labs has released quite a few top quality camera straps and their new Loop 3 looks to follow suit.

The Loop 3 is an upgraded version of their Loop 2 but with a little Cinch 2 incorporated into it. Unfortunately, we never had a chance to review the Loop 2 so we can't compare what was improved or updated.


The Loop 3 design is simplistic and minimalistic but it's purpose is straight to the point. Included is the strap, new thumb screw and mount.


The Loop 3 extends Luma's commitment to using the finest materials and all currently available manufacturing techniques, in order to create a lifetime of exceptional performance. The Loop 3 strap features a leather strap with Luma Labs imprinted onto the strap as well as heavy duty rivets and a proprietary carbon fiber reinforced polymer formulation.


One thing that Luma Labs has adapted onto the Loop 3 is the Cinch's slide adjusters; both front and back to let you lock your camera down instantly. A slide up of the front adjuster tightens the Loop down and raises the camera above your hip for maximum stability. Since there is no pull tab to cinch, it will require you to lift the camera up to relieve some of the tension. Ready to take the shot? A quick slide down of the front adjuster is all it takes to free the camera for unrestricted motion.

The back adjuster lets you adjust the length of the strap. The closer the adjuster is to the shoulder pad, the longer the strap.

The slides also make the Loop 3 completely modular. If you decide you need a different size, you can get a different size length of webbing. If you ever wear out a part because you’ve taken your Loop everywhere, it can be easily replaced by sending a new part to you. This modularity also gives Luma Labs the ability to add new connectors and features in the future.


The new Loop is a direct-to-camera offset mount. Precision machined from 7075-T6 aluminum, this new mount eliminates the dangle points that other slings have between the webbing and the camera, while optimally positioning the connection at the corner of the camera body. The screw is designed in a way that it allows you to get a good grip to tighten the screw as well as not getting in the way.

The machined aluminum screw is connected to an off-set D-loop which is where the strap webbing is looped through. The result? Far less moving around of the camera when it’s at your side. That means no more twisting and turning of the camera.



Conclusion : Overall, the Luma Labs Loop 3 Camera Sling Strap is a nice quality sling strap. The strap itself is comfortable and top quality. The mount is durable and easy to remove. You can mount the Loop 3 to your quick release plate if it has a 1/4-20 hole. Unfortunately, one important feature is the ability to mount the camera to a ball head with the strap attached. If you use a tripod, you must remove the Loop 3 from your camera.




Manufacturer: Luma Labs
Site: Buy from Luma Labs

Kickstarter: GoWorx GoKnuckles for GoPro HERO Cameras



We were contacted by Ryan over at GoWorx who informed us about their new Kickstarter campaign. GoKnuckles looks exactly like brass knuckles (without the brass) and with a GoPro HERO attached to the top of it. The GoKnuckles lets you hold your GoPro HERO securely while still also allowing you to use your fingers to hold or grab stuff.

Through Kickstarter, the GoKnuckles is $15. It's $2 off the retail price of $17.00.


Continue reading for more information about the GoWorx GoKnuckles.

Hit the streets, surf, and snow with GoKnuckles - the most awesome way to mount and use your GoPro® HERO camera.

If there is one thing GoPro fans around the world are demanding, it's more fun. Thus we designed GoKnuckles, an incredibly functional handheld mount for your GoPro® HERO camera inspired by the iconic form of Brass Knuckles.


Your GoPro camera can be mounted facing either way, which makes GoKnuckles the perfect tool for filming yourself and others during any action sports and adventures.


THE ORIGINAL HANDLE

To spice up our campaign, we are offering our flagship product in addition to GoKnuckles for two of our top pledge tiers.

The Original Handle works with GoPro’s HERO® camera and enhances the control you have over your photos and video. Handheld, it’s perfect for capturing low angle, 3rd person, and alternative perspective shots that are usually difficult to film. Unmanned, it provides a stable base for recording yourself or shooting creative and secondary angles.


The Original Handle+ features our Grip Upgrade and a strap to easily attach your GoPro® Wi-Fi Remote and control it with your thumb.

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