So, you're not sure if the official Canon 5d Mark III Battery Grip made by Canon is the right accessory for you. This post will help you decide.
The 5d Mark III grip is called the BG-E11. But, here's the deal. There are also several other manufacturers that make grips that are fully compatible with the 5D Mark III camera and you can save a lot of money by going with an alternative.
There are two characteristics of the battery grip made by Canon that differentiate it from the alternatives made by other manufacturers. They are, the makeup of the external shell, and the heftier price.
The BG-E11 alternatives will function properly and will double your battery life, no doubt; and the third party manufacturer's versions are quite a bit cheaper.
Another distinguishing feature of the BG-E11 is the inclusion of a multi-controller "joystick" and it's strategic location on the grip.
It is fully functional like the one on the 5D Mark III body and it also is positioned very closely to the same position on the body when the camera is held horizontally without the grip attached.
What that means for you is a familiarity to changing setings and shooting vertically when the grip is attached.
I've been a Canon DSLR shooter for quite some time and the grip on the 5D Mark III body is a pleasure to grasp in your hands. It sound a bit on the flaky side to say, but "it just feels right."
Whatever the composite material it is, Canon nailed it on this one. When the grip is attached to the 5D Mark III, the increase in gripping surface for your fingers to wrap around is impressive.
Photographers who are considering buying one of these accessories often focus on the extended battery life and the vertical shooting control buttons. Don't get me wrong, these are the two chief benefits of buying a grip.
The superior feel is one of those emotional benefits that doesn't show up as a technical specification.
The 5D Mark III grip takes two LP-E6 batteries or their equivalent and it DOES operate with only one battery installed. The optional Canon BGM-E11A battery tray takes 6 AA batteries.
These accessories are popular with pro photographers and advanced camera enthusiasts for 3 known reasons:
1. More convenient grip for camera settings and shooting in the vertical (portrait) orientation
2. Doubling the battery and shooting capacity.
3. Better balance when using a long lens.
I like how it feels in your hands and how it makes you look like a pro ;-)
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No matter what equipment you use, have a blast with your digital photography.
Written by Bruce Lovelace