My favorite $50 gadgets.

I just got a batch of new gadgets in, all in the $50 (or less) price range, and all have made my life a bit easier.
* Meike Vertical Battery Grip for Nikon D810. I don’t need a vertical grip for my D810 very often. I usually use my Nikon D4s in such situations. So, why pay $400 or more for Nikon’s MB-D12? I treat this plastic version with care, and for $60 it does the job. If I were covering the Olympics or Super Bowl with a D810, I’d want the Nikon grip. But this one is fine for casual use.
* Henge Docks HD01VB11MBA Vertical Docking Station.11 In Macbook Air. Normally, my 11-inch MacBook Air is plugged into a 26 inch monitor, real mouse, and a full-size keyboard. Stored vertically in this dock, to use the Mac on the go, all I need to do is disconnect the power, lift it out, and tuck into the inside pocket of my Scottevest. With my iPhone’s WiFi hotspot turned on, I can do anything I do with my iPad — plus type!
*Panasonic XX Battery Powered by eneloop, 2500mAh High Capacity, 4 Pack AA Ni-MH Pre-Charged Rechargeable Batteries These batteries keep 80% of their power when stored a year, so I can fill my electronic flash with them and not have to worry about whether I have any juice. At $17 for a four-pack, these cost no more than regular rechargeables.
* Neewer 160 LED CN-160 Dimmable Ultra High Power Panel Digital Camera / Camcorder Video Light. This video light cost me $35, which more than compensates for the cheap plastic construction. I didn’t want to pay big bucks for an accessory I don’t use very often, and if you avoid hard knocks, this panel is big, bright, and comes with filters. Stuffed with Sanyo eneloops, it’s always ready to go, too.

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