4V Design Versis SL sling strap + QR plate review

4V Design QR plate

The other important part in this review is the 4V Design QR plate. That is a small quick release plate you can use to attach your camera to the Versis strap. It can also be used with other straps with a hook system, like black rapid and therefore is sold separately. It is designed as an alternative to the hook that comes with the 4V Design Versis SL. The smart thing about it is that besides a hook to attach your Versis it is also an arca swiss compatible quick release plate. So you can attach it to your camera and use it to mount your camera on any tripod with a arca swiss compatible head. The hook on the 4V Design QR plate is foldable. When you need it to attach your 4V Design Versis you flip it up. When you don’t need the hook you can fold it flat. The QR plate offers some fantastic industrial design. If you are a fan of that the foldable hook is a real joy to look at and use. It uses two spring loaded clips that allow you to set the hook in three angles, folded flat, 90 degrees or exactly in between. Moving it between the positions it gives a great, very durable feeling and it snaps in place with a reassuring click.

4V Design Versis review
The QR plate is very wel designed in all its simplicity

The QR plate is attached to you camera with a screw with a foldable wing, so you can attach it without any tools. It also has a slot to use a coin, flat screwdriver or allen key to lock it. One detail I really love is that the foldable wing on the screw has got a small ridge on it, that is just big enough to get you fingernail behind it when the wing is folded down. Otherwise it would be very hard to flip it back up again. It’s just a really small detail, but one that is very important in day to day use. On the top it has got 4 rubber pads to make sure it has enough grip and doesn’t slide. There is also a wide slot you can use to attach other accessories like a peak design clutch to the QR plate.

4V Design Versis review

4V Design Versis SL

I’ve talked a lot about the leather and how the 4V Design is versatile, but I haven’t even started on the design of the strap itself. The Versis has got a nice ergonomic shaped shoulder pad that is comfortable when you use it as a neck strap because of the form. But is even more comfortable using it as a shoulder strap with one, two or even three cameras on it. On the shoulder pad you’ll find the two metal hooks you can use to attach the second or third camera. As always 4V Design has used solid metal rings and hardware to make sure all parts of the strap will be durable.

4V Design Versis review
Italian leather, solid metal parts, the Versis is built last

The underside of the shoulder strap is has got a grippy coating printed on it in the form of 4V Design logos. That makes sure the strap doesn’t slide off your shoulder. The pad is lined with a double layer of memory foam that feels very comfortable. The strap adjusts to the form of your body. I like how the middle of the strap is a little thinner making it more flexible. That helps when you store the strap in a bag as it folds easier, but also help it to form to your shoulder.

 

 

4V Design Versis review

The 4V Design Versis uses a wide 25 mm polyamide band that is very strong and durable. The Versis is strong enough to hold up to 10 kilograms, making it strong enough to carry any current DSLR with lens. The band offers a wide adjustability from 107 to 131 cm. That means it is long enough for larger and long people and can be adjusted short enough for smaller people.

4V Design Versis review
The hook is elegant and light

The 4V Design Versis is a true sling strap that can also be used as a neck strap. If you use it as a sling you’re supposed to have your camera hanging from your hip while making it possible to grab and slide it up to your eye within a second. To do that 4V Design uses a small and light slider that can effortlessly slide over the 25 mm wide polyamide band. The slider is designed very well. It offers a small plastic knob you can unscrew to unlock the clip that attaches the 4V Design Versis to the hook or QR plate on the camera. This system takes some practice, but after that it is a very quick system that offers great durability and safety.

4V Design Versis review

Compared to my Carry Speed

Before I got the 4V Design Versis SL I used a CarrySpeed whenever I needed a sling strap. And most of the time I would just leave it at home because I didn’t think the bulk and extra weight were worth the convenience. Since I have the Versis SL I’ve been taking that with me allmost every time I took my camera since it just that much lighter and easier to stuff in a bag.

One of the biggest differences between the 4V Design Versis and CarrySpeed is the material they are made off. The 4V Design Versis is made in Italy of Italian leather, explaining the price difference. The CarrySpeed is made China out of neoprene and other synthetic materials. The CarrySpeed is sold for about 90 euros, the 4V Design Versis starts at 119 euros for the Versis Up kit. Both straps are designed to comfortably carry heavy gear all day long. The natural materials used in the 4V Design make sure it doesn’t feel sweaty after using it for a long time on a hot day. That is a downside of the CarrySpeed, because of the rubber coated neoprene that it is made of it gets hot and sweaty after some time in use.

4V Design Versis review
Two sling straps for pro use, but they coudn’t be more different in every way

Both the CarrySpeed and 4V Design Veris SL straps are designed as sling straps that use an attachment on the bottom of the camera instead of the normal straps on the side. The straps let the camera hang upside down at your waste and when you need them you can pull them up to your eye in a second. Both the straps use some system that slides over the band to make that possible. But that is also where the similarities between these two straps end. The CarrySpeed uses a big and bulky plate with a big round knob on it that sticks out from the bottom of the camera. That is both bulky and heavy and the knob can get in the way when you handle the camera. I really like the system 4V Design uses on the 4V Design Versis SL better. The Versis SL comes with a small screw with a rotating hook on it. That is much lighter and smaller than the CarrySpeed system. The CarrySpeed does offer a arca swiss compatible profile on the plate, so you can use it the attach it to you tripod. If that is what you are looking for you could also use the 4V Design QR plate as an alternative to the standard hook that comes with the Versis SL. The QR plate also offers the arca swiss compatible profile, but it is much smaller and lighter. And when you don’t need it you can just fold the down so it doesn’t get in the way. Something that isn’t possible on the CarrySpeed plate.

4V Design Versis review
The CarrySpeed uses a bulky plate on the bottom of the camera that adds quite some weight
4V Design Versis review
The 4V Design QR plate is a lot lighter and doesn’t get in the way
4V Design Versis review
For a smaller camera the hook that comes with the Versis SL is even better

The way you connect your strap to the attachment on the camera is also very different between the 4V Design and CarrySpeed. The CarrySpeed uses a heavy system that works with a collar you have to twist and pull back to open it. It takes some time to get used to it, but after some practice it is possible to open and close it with just one hand. The 4V Design system on the other hand is much more elegant, light and smaller. It consists of a small metal hook that can be opened by loosening a screw and pressing it. It does need twohanded operation, so it is a little slower to use than the CarrySpeed system, but I would take that over the weight an bulk of the CarrySpeed. Another advantage of the 4V Design system is that because it is lighter it also moves over the band a lot easier than the heavier CarrySpeed system. That makes the 4V Design system easier and quicker to use.

4V Design Versis review
Both the 4V Design mounting options compared to the big plate and hook of the CarrySpeed.

The CarrySpeed weighs 350 grams, mostely because of the heavy plate that comes with it, because the neoprene of the shoulder pad is ligther than the leather used by 4V Design. The Versis SL with the standard hook weighs just 200 grams, and just 235 grams with the QR plate. But that doesn’t tell the whole story. Most of the weight of the 4V Design Versis is in the part that rests on your shoulder. With the CarrySpeed a lot of the weight is attached to your camera. So it is heavy when it hangs from your shoulder, but also weighs down your camera itself. Therefore the difference feels even bigger than it is in numbers.

4V Design Versis review

All in all the CarrySpeed and 4V Design Versis are designed for the same kind of use, but have a completely different design philosophy. The CarrySpeed is big, bulky and not really good looking, it is built just to be practical. The 4V Design Versis is designed to be very good looking but it even manages to be more practical than the CarrySpeed. There is a difference in price, but for me the 4V Design Versis is certainly worth the extra money.

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