Storm Jacket Camera Covers by Vortex Media

0Comments

Shooting on rainy or snowy days can result in some amazing images but also in accidental damage to your equipment. Whether you do nature or street photography, limiting yourself to getting out on dry days can be very frustrating. I finally added a camera cover to my gear! Like many of you, until recently I had  been using makeshift plastic covers from bags, shower caps, etc. They work in an emergency situation but, to be honest, they are not always a dependable solution to protect your expensive gear…

I recently discovered the camera covers by Storm Jacket. They come in a variety of sizes (depending on the lenses you use). They also come in Standard and Pro models.

Here is the scoop: The Storm Jacket is made of AquaNylon fabric and features a bungee draw string on each end. It fits securely over your lens cap and stays in place. The other end also features a draw string which can be pulled tight between shoots when walking around on a rainy or snowy day.  The difference between the standard and pro models is the ability to use a tripod with the pro model. The Pro Storm Jacket has the added feature of a Velcro opening on the bottom to allow for the mounting of a tripod or monopod. I also recommend the pro version if your camera strap connects to you tripod socket. I use a BlackRapid strap on my main camera and the the Pro Storm Jacket fits perfectly.

– The Standard model comes in five sizes (from 11” to 31” or 27.9 cm to 78.8 cm), in yellow, red, black or camouflage.

– The Pro model comes in four sizes (17” to 31” or 43.1 cm to 78.8 cm) in black or camouflage.

In order to choose the length you need, you just measure the length from the front of the lens cap (zoom fully extended) to the rear of your camera and add 2 inches to that number. The model I chose can fit both my 70-200 mm f/2.8 (pictured here) and my 24-70 mm f/2.8.

If folds flat, weighs almost nothing and comes with a small zippered pocket that can hook on to your belt or camera bag. The only drawback I can think of is that is it not clear. There are clear covers available out there but they are definitely not as durable as the sturdy fabric used on the Storm Jacket. I can see this lasting for many years in harsh conditions. I have only used it on rainy days so far but I have many months of snow to look forward to in Minnesota!

To find out more about the Storm Jacket by Vortex Media click here.

Prices vary depending on the model/size and range from $36 to $59 with some good deals on Amazon.

Read more from our Cameras & Equipment category

Valerie Jardin

I live and breathe in pixels! Photography is more than a passion, it’s an obsession, almost an addiction. When I’m not shooting or writing, I spend my time teaching this beautiful craft during photo workshops all over the world! I am also thrilled to be an official X Photographer for Fujifilm USA. Visit my Website
Follow me on Facebook , Twitter , Instagram. And listen to my Podcast!

  • Major Bokeh

    That’s great, but if you aren’t in the rain too often, a good cheap way to protect your gear in the rain is a simple hair bonnet that you can swipe next time from the hotel room along with the little soaps. I keep a couple in my bag at all times and they’ve come in handy on several occasions.

  • Vlad

    I was actually looking into this specific item. It’s nice to know that someone from the DPS community did a review for this. I’d rather take someone’s word from here than a seller’s site with “testimonials.” Much appreciated. 🙂

  • scott

    To add to Major Bokeh’s comment, I have plastic rain covers made for a DSLR that I carry. I’m not in the rain very often and these work fine. Forget who sells them, but they are cheap, come in packs of multiple quanities, and actually last quite a while (still using the first one after purchasing 8 months ago). They’re designed to cinch around the lens so you can shoot in the rain, but I don’t think that functionality works well with any camera rain cover.

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/lendog64/

  • At the risk of sounding smug, I use an Olympus E5 (weatherproofed) and a selection of weatherproofed lenses. Whilst they’re not watertight, a bit of weather doesn’t bother me…or, to be more accurate, doesn’t bother my equipment – I get pretty hacked off with it all 🙂

  • I’ve been using trash bags for whenever I go outside in rain (once a year) and it’s simple but good protection. I would definitely buy something like this for photographing storms!

  • Ned

    I’ve been using a Storm Jacket for years. One of its major attributes is how flat and small a package it folds down to. It’s extremely easy to pack in any bag to take when shooting near home, or when traveling far from home.

    The Storm Jacket is durable too, and effective in keeping your camera/lens dry. As far as I’m concerned, spending $36-$59 for one makes a lot more sense than the inexpensive, thin, easily torn or even “free” “shower cap” solutions some use. Protecting any $500+ camera/lens with a solution that can fail easily (and I’ve seen those “shower cap” and “multi-pak” rain cover fail often on others during my travels) compared to an “expensive” $59 solution, which has durability, just doesn’t make a whole lot of sense to me. Sometimes those inexpensive solutions are the most costly.

    As to the Storm Jacket, over time I’ve found they have two major drawbacks. First, because they have no direct hand access to the camera through them, it is not particular easy to manipulate a zoom lens to change focal length, especially if the zoom isn’t internal, adjust a tripod, or change exposure settings. Second, you have to manipulate the rear end of the Storm Jacket regularly to be able to use the view finder well, and then cover that end to keep the rain off your camera. Yet for taking some photos in the rain, and protecting your camera/lens from a storm when out all day traveling when you go rain or shine, or in an unexpected storm, you can’t beat it when considering its durability and price combination.

    While the Storm Jacket is always in my photo kit wherever I’m shooting, as an emergency precaution, it’s no longer my primary rain protection due to its shortcomings, if I’m anticipating bad weather. My primary rain cover is the Think Tank Photo Hydrophobia series. These rain covers are amazing and are simply the best rain protection I’ve seen for DSLRs and SLRs, and if you’re one who takes rain as an opportunity to get interesting photographs, aren’t expensive for what you get.

  • Interesting, I use something similar, the Kata E-702. ( http://www.kata-bags.com/productFRM2HS.asp?p_Id=229&Version=Photo ) All of the pictures I have seen of the Storm Jacket show it from the side. One of the things I like most about the Kata bag is that it has separate hand slots, which can also be snugged up and the main part of the bag is clear so I can see and manipulate my camera. I also like that you can unzip the bottom of the bag to hook up to a tripod.

    I can also attest to the Kata’s usefulness. I took it with me on a trip to Niagara Falls. This bag kept my camera dry while I was on the Maid of the Mist right up to the heart of the Horseshoe Falls. My only complaint was that I had my wife snug it up on both hands. The day was warm (although the water was freezing) and the bag did not breath all that well. This caused some minor condensation in the bag (from my sweaty paws) and made it a bit difficult to see, not impossible, just difficult. I don’t think it will fold up quite as small as the Storm Jacket, but it does fold up to a pretty small bundle. When wet, I let it hang off of the back of my camera bag until dry and then just shoved it into the bottom.

    I have used baggies, hair bonnets, etc. They all rip too easily or otherwise just do not fit properly. Solutions like these are far better for the long run, especially if you are in the elements often. The cost for these bags is minimal compared to the cost of your camera and equipment. The fit is far better, which, let’s face it, is really going to help to keep out the elements. They will fit more than one camera and will probably be part of your gear for years to come. If you won’t skimp on a tripod, don’t skimp on your rain covering.

    Even with the few issues I have I would highly recommend it to anyone. The price is a little higher than the Storm Jacket (about $20 U.S.), but I think that the advantages more than make up for it.

    Frank

  • it doesn’t have hand access, so how do you adjust your camera? That’s kind of a fail, isn’t it? I prefer the Kata bag with hand access.

  • I agree with the importance of spending a few bucks to protect thousands of dollars of gear. Plus I don’t think the 70-200mm would fit in a shower cap 😉
    Also, in my opinion, fewer openings also means better water resistance. The camera end of the Storm
    Jacket is large enough for your hands to make your adjustments. Pull the drawstring for better protection in between shots.

  • Robert L

    I also use the Kato model but now I want the model from Think Tank (I am on a Think Tank binge at the moment – loving the modular system for sports and event photography)

    I do like the Kato but it doesn’t fold up well – don’t want to put a crease in the plastic. I hang it in my car from the head rest using a D-clamp thingy and when needed I clip it to my belt. I kind of roll it into a loose ball.

    I use a 80-200 Nikon AF-S 2.8 and have put a piece of velcro on my lens hood and another at the end of the kato sleeve – then you have the drawstrings to secure over that. Works great – I have used it at football games in the snow and rain with no problems – other than some condensation on the inside in extreme conditions.

    I did witness a “rival” photographer at a high school playoff game fighting with his “food lion” bag ……. while I was shooting the action on the field…. lol

  • I have been using the storm jacket for several years. We don’t get a lot of rain or snow here in New Mexico, but I have used it in both conditions and it works very well.

    I mainly purchased it to protect the camera from water spray on our boat, I have gotten some of my most favored photos from the lakes here. Also I bought the storm jacket in yellow,to protect that black camera from the hot sun.

    I like the ease of use and the price was right.

  • Tim

    FWIW personal preference here is a chamois leather cloth. It’s great for drizzly/rainy days and the rest of the time, wrapping it around the camera gives extra padding. Bonus 🙂

  • Boomer

    I bought them some years ago, and think they are a good choice. Not really expensive and easy to use.
    As a hint jsut be sure you have a Lenshood on your Lens otherwise the Stormjacket might slip off, especially with Lenses that move during zooming or focusing.

    The only negative side I have found ist, that it does not pack itself in the camera bag, so it has happend to me a few times, that I was in the rain the the Stormjacket sat nice and dry at home. 😀

  • KYLE

    What about a good solution for really dusty shoots?
    Anything specific for that? Or will storm jacket do well with that as well?

  • @Kyle, It will protect your camera and lens from the dust, except for the front element…

  • Kyle

    Thanks Valerie
    For the Canon 70-200mm f4 L USM on the T2i what size would you think best? I have heard measure and go 2 inches bigger.
    And will the pro size give me some what easy access to the zoom?
    Or should i go with the standard and just grab the outside. I think with an open hole in the bottom for my hand,
    the dust would just float up.

Some Older Comments

  • Kyle May 29, 2012 10:47 pm

    Thanks Valerie
    For the Canon 70-200mm f4 L USM on the T2i what size would you think best? I have heard measure and go 2 inches bigger.
    And will the pro size give me some what easy access to the zoom?
    Or should i go with the standard and just grab the outside. I think with an open hole in the bottom for my hand,
    the dust would just float up.

  • valerie Jardin May 29, 2012 09:24 pm

    @Kyle, It will protect your camera and lens from the dust, except for the front element...

  • KYLE May 29, 2012 02:57 am

    What about a good solution for really dusty shoots?
    Anything specific for that? Or will storm jacket do well with that as well?

  • Boomer July 4, 2011 06:17 pm

    I bought them some years ago, and think they are a good choice. Not really expensive and easy to use.
    As a hint jsut be sure you have a Lenshood on your Lens otherwise the Stormjacket might slip off, especially with Lenses that move during zooming or focusing.

    The only negative side I have found ist, that it does not pack itself in the camera bag, so it has happend to me a few times, that I was in the rain the the Stormjacket sat nice and dry at home. :D

  • Tim June 21, 2011 08:15 am

    FWIW personal preference here is a chamois leather cloth. It's great for drizzly/rainy days and the rest of the time, wrapping it around the camera gives extra padding. Bonus :)

  • Pam Bycraft June 17, 2011 10:31 pm

    I have been using the storm jacket for several years. We don't get a lot of rain or snow here in New Mexico, but I have used it in both conditions and it works very well.

    I mainly purchased it to protect the camera from water spray on our boat, I have gotten some of my most favored photos from the lakes here. Also I bought the storm jacket in yellow,to protect that black camera from the hot sun.

    I like the ease of use and the price was right.

  • Robert L June 16, 2011 09:32 pm

    I also use the Kato model but now I want the model from Think Tank (I am on a Think Tank binge at the moment - loving the modular system for sports and event photography)

    I do like the Kato but it doesn't fold up well - don't want to put a crease in the plastic. I hang it in my car from the head rest using a D-clamp thingy and when needed I clip it to my belt. I kind of roll it into a loose ball.

    I use a 80-200 Nikon AF-S 2.8 and have put a piece of velcro on my lens hood and another at the end of the kato sleeve - then you have the drawstrings to secure over that. Works great - I have used it at football games in the snow and rain with no problems - other than some condensation on the inside in extreme conditions.

    I did witness a "rival" photographer at a high school playoff game fighting with his "food lion" bag ....... while I was shooting the action on the field.... lol

  • Valerie jardin June 16, 2011 06:23 am

    I agree with the importance of spending a few bucks to protect thousands of dollars of gear. Plus I don't think the 70-200mm would fit in a shower cap ;-)
    Also, in my opinion, fewer openings also means better water resistance. The camera end of the Storm
    Jacket is large enough for your hands to make your adjustments. Pull the drawstring for better protection in between shots.

  • Hans June 16, 2011 05:40 am

    it doesn't have hand access, so how do you adjust your camera? That's kind of a fail, isn't it? I prefer the Kata bag with hand access.

  • Frank June 16, 2011 02:41 am

    Interesting, I use something similar, the Kata E-702. ( http://www.kata-bags.com/productFRM2HS.asp?p_Id=229&Version=Photo ) All of the pictures I have seen of the Storm Jacket show it from the side. One of the things I like most about the Kata bag is that it has separate hand slots, which can also be snugged up and the main part of the bag is clear so I can see and manipulate my camera. I also like that you can unzip the bottom of the bag to hook up to a tripod.

    I can also attest to the Kata's usefulness. I took it with me on a trip to Niagara Falls. This bag kept my camera dry while I was on the Maid of the Mist right up to the heart of the Horseshoe Falls. My only complaint was that I had my wife snug it up on both hands. The day was warm (although the water was freezing) and the bag did not breath all that well. This caused some minor condensation in the bag (from my sweaty paws) and made it a bit difficult to see, not impossible, just difficult. I don't think it will fold up quite as small as the Storm Jacket, but it does fold up to a pretty small bundle. When wet, I let it hang off of the back of my camera bag until dry and then just shoved it into the bottom.

    I have used baggies, hair bonnets, etc. They all rip too easily or otherwise just do not fit properly. Solutions like these are far better for the long run, especially if you are in the elements often. The cost for these bags is minimal compared to the cost of your camera and equipment. The fit is far better, which, let's face it, is really going to help to keep out the elements. They will fit more than one camera and will probably be part of your gear for years to come. If you won't skimp on a tripod, don't skimp on your rain covering.

    Even with the few issues I have I would highly recommend it to anyone. The price is a little higher than the Storm Jacket (about $20 U.S.), but I think that the advantages more than make up for it.

    Frank

  • Ned June 15, 2011 10:03 pm

    I've been using a Storm Jacket for years. One of its major attributes is how flat and small a package it folds down to. It's extremely easy to pack in any bag to take when shooting near home, or when traveling far from home.

    The Storm Jacket is durable too, and effective in keeping your camera/lens dry. As far as I'm concerned, spending $36-$59 for one makes a lot more sense than the inexpensive, thin, easily torn or even "free" "shower cap" solutions some use. Protecting any $500+ camera/lens with a solution that can fail easily (and I've seen those "shower cap" and "multi-pak" rain cover fail often on others during my travels) compared to an "expensive" $59 solution, which has durability, just doesn't make a whole lot of sense to me. Sometimes those inexpensive solutions are the most costly.

    As to the Storm Jacket, over time I've found they have two major drawbacks. First, because they have no direct hand access to the camera through them, it is not particular easy to manipulate a zoom lens to change focal length, especially if the zoom isn't internal, adjust a tripod, or change exposure settings. Second, you have to manipulate the rear end of the Storm Jacket regularly to be able to use the view finder well, and then cover that end to keep the rain off your camera. Yet for taking some photos in the rain, and protecting your camera/lens from a storm when out all day traveling when you go rain or shine, or in an unexpected storm, you can't beat it when considering its durability and price combination.

    While the Storm Jacket is always in my photo kit wherever I'm shooting, as an emergency precaution, it's no longer my primary rain protection due to its shortcomings, if I'm anticipating bad weather. My primary rain cover is the Think Tank Photo Hydrophobia series. These rain covers are amazing and are simply the best rain protection I've seen for DSLRs and SLRs, and if you're one who takes rain as an opportunity to get interesting photographs, aren't expensive for what you get.

  • Chio June 15, 2011 07:23 pm

    I've been using trash bags for whenever I go outside in rain (once a year) and it's simple but good protection. I would definitely buy something like this for photographing storms!

  • Ceri Vale June 15, 2011 05:42 pm

    At the risk of sounding smug, I use an Olympus E5 (weatherproofed) and a selection of weatherproofed lenses. Whilst they're not watertight, a bit of weather doesn't bother me...or, to be more accurate, doesn't bother my equipment - I get pretty hacked off with it all :-)

  • scott June 15, 2011 03:38 pm

    To add to Major Bokeh's comment, I have plastic rain covers made for a DSLR that I carry. I'm not in the rain very often and these work fine. Forget who sells them, but they are cheap, come in packs of multiple quanities, and actually last quite a while (still using the first one after purchasing 8 months ago). They're designed to cinch around the lens so you can shoot in the rain, but I don't think that functionality works well with any camera rain cover.

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/lendog64/

  • Vlad June 15, 2011 11:55 am

    I was actually looking into this specific item. It's nice to know that someone from the DPS community did a review for this. I'd rather take someone's word from here than a seller's site with "testimonials." Much appreciated. :)

  • Major Bokeh June 15, 2011 09:58 am

    That's great, but if you aren't in the rain too often, a good cheap way to protect your gear in the rain is a simple hair bonnet that you can swipe next time from the hotel room along with the little soaps. I keep a couple in my bag at all times and they've come in handy on several occasions.

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