After almost 5 years constantly traveling with my beloved Sony RX100, it was time to upgrade my gear to further advanced my filmmaking skills. As it always is, the bigger the camera, the heavier the accessories. In this guide, I will show you all the upgrades and gear I carry when I am on the road. The challenge here was to fit all of these upgrades into a 25L backpack from Herschel Supply. Let us begin.
Within this guide, we will focus on keeping the backpack as light as we can without sacrificing the capability to film effectively while traveling.
Camera: Sony a6500
General Purpose Lens: Sony 16-70mm F4 (SEL1670Z)
Low light Lens: Sony 35mm f/1.8 (SEL35F18)
Wide Angle Lens: Rokinon 12mm F2.0 (RK12M-E)
Tripod: Rangers 57” Ultra Compact
Charger: Anker Premium 5-Port 60W USB Wall Charger
Power Bank: RAVPower 26800mAh Power Delivery
Lens Cleaning Solution: Lens Cleaning Kit
External Hard Drive: WD My Passport (2 TB)
Other Accessories: Spare Batteries | SanDisk SD Card | Polarizer
Backpack: Herschel Supply backpack
The Sony a6500 is one of the best cropped-sensor mirrorless camera in the market and for good reason. It is fast, reliable and versatile perfect for both photography and videography. With its fast autofocus and 6K sharpness in 4K format video shooting, I have been seeing major improvement in my travel videos.
Above is an example of my travel video shot on the Sony a6500. The body is light and compact compare to DSLR so it is perfect for traveling.Buy Sony a6500 ($1,398.00)
General Purpose Lens
This is my preferred choice for the best all around lens. What that means is that this lens stays on my camera most of the time. The 16 - 70mm covers most of the range I need while allowing me to zoom into people from afar. The f4 aperture is also fast enough for most use cases.
If you are looking for a cheaper option, I would recommend the alternative (Sony 18-105mm f/4 Lens (SELP18105G)) instead since it's only US$ 598 but with all the capability you get from my lens but just a little bit heavier.Buy Sony Vario-Tessar 16-70mm Lens ($780.00)
Low Light Lens
What my general purpose lens lack is the ability to shoot great in low light. This lens compensates the general purpose with its faster aperture at f1.8. It is also a great street photography lens because the bokeh effect on this lens is phenomenal.Buy Sony 35mm f/1.8 Prime Fixed Lens ($448.00)
Wide Angle Lens
This lens is for rare occasions when I want to do astrophotography and with the extremely wide angle and low aperture, I should be able to capture the scale of the milky way with the landscape easily. The problem is that this is a manual focusing lens so I will have to manually focus the shot myself hence for the rare occasion.
I'm using a variant version of this lens as you can see in the photo but I would recommend you buy Rokinon instead as it was recommended by Lonelyspeck.comBuy Rokinon 12mm F2.0 Ultra Wide Angle Lens ($332.18)
I used a Chinese variant (Jusino B-025) of this tripod but the size, quality and price are pretty much the same. I always carry my tripod in my backpack so a tripod has to be small enough when fully collapsed. This one is around 35cm collapsed so it fits well in my backpack. It is also made of metal so it's durable and sturdy enough to carry the payload.Buy Rangers 57” Ultra Compact Tripod ($69.99)
This is my universal charger for all my electronics. With 4 USB ports and one power delivery USB-C port, I can charge all my electronics with just one charger. This is one of the few charger that is capable of Power Delivery technology which should allow you to quick charge powerful devices like MacBook or the Pixel 2 phones through its USB-C port.Buy Anker Premium 5-Port 60W USB Wall Charger ($49.99)
I am using a Somoss Sense 6+ Pro 20000mah power bank but it is only available in Thailand so I would recommend you getting RAVPower portable charger with Power Delivery Support. I use this to keep all my electronics topped up during the day. Power Delivery support means that you can quick charge powerful devices like Macbook or the Pixel 2 phones as well.Buy RAVPower 26800mAh Power Delivery Portable Charger ($79.99)
Moving from a compact camera to mirrorless camera with interchangeable lens requires you to keep the sensor clean yourself. At first, I thought I wouldn't need it but being in the desert for 3 days taught me otherwise. Tiny specks can ruin your videos so having a cleaning solution ready will come in handy when you need it.Buy Lens Cleaning Kit ($8.99)
I have 2 identical My Passport HDs with 2TB each to back up my photos and videos. One I take it with me on the road, and the other is safe at home. I have had the opportunity to experience the worst fear a photographer could ever face first hand not too long ago, when my bag was stolen together with my external HD. It was a hard lesson learned, and that is why I now have two HD backups and you should too.Buy Western Digital My Passport HD ($69.99)
Spare batteries are always a good idea for Sony Mirrorless cameras which are known to have terrible battery life.Buy Sony NP-FW50 Spare Batteries ($19.59
The Sony 6500 are quite picky about its SD Card since it will only allow shooting 4K in the highest quality (100M) with SD Card that has SDXC U3. Simply look at your SD Card and see if there is a U symbol with a little 3 inside. If not, then you will need a new card.Buy SanDisk Extreme 128GB SDXC UHS-I Card ($55.00)
This is optional but the filter will cut bright light coming through the lens during midday and bring up the color saturation a little. Perfect for landscape photography during bright days. This particular one (55mm) is for my general purpose lens mentioned previously.Buy B+W 55mm Circular Polarizer ($62.95)
Last but not least, the thing I can't live without is my Indian Blue Herschel Supply's backpack. I carry everything I need for the day with this backpack including camera gear, snacks, and water. The main reason why I love this backpack is the unique style it has to it that is hard to find in travel day pack.Buy Herschel Supply Little America backpack ($99.99)
Total Cost: US$ 3,473.66
"Three thousand dollars? That is expensive!". I'm not gonna lie, it was not cheap buying all these stuff but remember that I bought many of these over the span of 3 years so feel free to pick what works best for you. I hope you will find this list useful. If so, feel free to hit share, tweet and comments below.
The Solo Traveler’s Resources is a series of posts by Bucketlistly where we will explore the ways of life of nomads including how we work, travel, and what we carry in our backpack.
Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links.