Steve's Digicams

RX Camera Accessories

RX Flash Bracket

for

Nikon Coolpix 900s/950/990



Review posted 3/21/00
updated 8/2/02


Versatec RX

(I have not been able to contact anyone at RX Camera so I do believe that they have closed this portion of their business. This review is for reference only.)


The folks at RX Camera Accessories have built an excellent flash bracket for the Nikon Coolpix 900s / 950 / 990 cameras, it will not work on the Coolpix 995 because of the new popup flash.. The $74.95 RX bracket is designed to be used with the Nikon AS-E900 flash shoe/sync cable assembly and a Nikon-compatible speedlight.

RX Camera Accessories now has a lens hood and cable release bracket for Coolpix cameras, click here for the pictures and details.



Versatec RX

The RX attaches to the Coolpix by tightening the padded screw against the bottom of the camera's lens unit. The part that contacts the top of the lens unit is also well padded. This padding helps to grip the camera firmly without the worry of scratching the painted surfaces.



Versatec RX

(Note: The black polymer T-handle is a $14.99 option, the RX Bracket is shipped with a smaller, egg-shaped plastic handle, shown above)



Versatec RX

You can easily flip the bracket into the vertical position when using the Coolpix in portrait orientation. It works as well with the new Coolpix 990 as it does with the 950 or 900s.



Versatec RX

Because it mounts on the camera's lens unit, the RX bracket gives you complete access to both the CompactFlash card and the batteries without the need to remove it first. You also retain the capability of swiveling the lens to any angle desired.



Versatec RX

Another benefit of the RX is that it allows you to use the WC-E24 wideangle (or the telephoto) lens with the advantage of flash illumination.



Versatec RX

When attached, the RX allows normal operation with either the LCD or the optical viewfinder - nothing is blocked or inconvenienced. You can even access the diopter adjustment for the optical viewfinder.



Versatec RX

The newly designed tripod mount now supports the weight of the camera, flash and bracket without putting a strain on the Nikon's swivel joint and allows you to position the color LCD at any angle desired.



Versatec RX










Steve's Conclusion

There are many different flash brackets that can be used with the Coolpix cameras including Nikon's own bracket. The Versatec RX is the only one that does not use the tripod socket and it's the only one that lets you access the CompactFlash card and batteries while still on the camera. It's also the only bracket that can quickly go from landscape to portrait mode by simply flipping it open.

As well as being a highly versatile mount for the Nikon Speedlight, the RX gives you a solid, stable grip to an often awkward camera & flash combination. You must observe caution when attaching a large strobe like the SB28 on the Coolpix 950's lens unit. Be sure to support (hold) both parts of the camera to prevent damage to the swivel joint. If you use it properly I don't see this being a major problem but a word to the wise just the same.

The advantages of using the RX and external flash:

  • Flash is now above and away from the lens greatly reducing the problem of redeye that is so prevalent with the Coolpix cameras.

  • More powerful flash for greater range of illumination

  • Bounce flash (with appropriate Nikon speedlight) is prefered for more "natural" looking subjects

  • Extends the life of the camera's batteries by disabling the builtin flash

  • Faster flash recycle times

  • Flash photography is now possible with the wideangle and telephoto adapter lenses that normally block the camera's builtin flash

  • No need to remove the bracket to access the CF card or batteries

  • Easily change between landscape and portrait orientations

Having used the Nikon flash bracket and a lot of other regular photo flash brackets I can tell you that this is a better way to do it. The other brackets use the tripod mount and if you need to put the camera and the flash on a tripod it becomes very unstable. The results have been excellent with the flash "up and away" from the lens, it significantly reduces redeye problems. Not to mention how quick and easy it is to transition from horizontal to vertical and back again. And you no longer have to unscrew the bracket everytime you want to change the memory card or the batteries.

My conclusion -- TWO THUMBS UP (or 5+ digicams) for the RX, it's a real winner!



RX Lens Hood

RX Camera Accessories now has this precision machined flat black hood for Nikon cameras for $14.99. With an internal O-ring, it slips cleanly over the Coolpix 950, 990 or 995's lens and stays put. The flat black finish assures that the only light entering the lens is reflected by your subject

RX Cable Release bracket

They also have a high quality, precision machined, shutter release cable mount for the Coolpix 950 for $29.99, available soon the 990 too.





Alan Zenreich's RX Bracket review

Larry Berman's RX Bracket setup





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