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Lowepro SlingShot 202 AW Review

Lowepro SlingShot 202 AW Review - Kevin Jefcoate puts Lowepro's SlingShot 202 AW bag to the test.

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Category : Bags, Cases and Straps
Product : Lowepro Lowepro SlingShot 202 AW bag
Price : £85
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As some bag manufacturers are trying to develop new styles of bag, Lowepro, as their tagline suggests, (The Trusted Original) are sticking with their heritage and what they have been doing for the past 40 years, delivering high quality camera bags. The new SlingShot range hasn’t bucked the trend and is an updated version to the tried and tested and much favoured original.

Lowepro SlingShot 202 camera bag

The SlingShot has a single padded shoulder strap which after many years of using a backpack with two straps, took a little getting used to. I guess as a man in my 40’s the SlingShot gave me a more youthful and trendy look – however, that is just personal preference and it didn't detract from the bags performance when I took it out on a recent commercial shoot. It is very comfortable and the additional belt helps keep it in the right place.

First and foremost in my mind is the protection of my kit and the SlingShot doesn’t compromise. While the bag is not rigid in construction, it has a solid feel to it and you immediately get the feeling that has been well made.

Lowepro SlingShot 202 camera bag side pocket
 
Lowepro SlingShot 202 camera bag top compartment

The single strap design affords easy access to the contents of the bag without having to remove it. This has been well thought out and I can really see the advantages of this when in a crowded place or if the ground conditions are such that you wouldn’t want to put your bag on the ground. That said, the AW stands for all weather and this bag includes a patented cover that when not in use is neatly tucked away in a pouch at the base of the bag and secured with a Velcro strip.

This updated version now includes extra space for personal items and the upper compartment has internal pockets and elasticated straps to secure items such as a portable hard drive. What is disappointing is the lack of a key holder as I use this all the time as I know my keys are in a safe place! There is a good sized front pocket that has been designed to keep pens etc. neat and tidy and because the zip opens all the way down one side as well as across the top, retrieval of the content is very easy.

Lowepro SlingShot 202 camera bag front pocket

A noticeable addition is the ‘Hideaway Tripod Mount’ system that enables a compact tripod or monopod to be secured to the side of the bag. The holder is also neatly tucked away when not in use and as with the AW cover, the pouch is fastened with Velcro. The top of the tripod is held in place by a fully adjustable strap and quick release plastic buckle.

The main compartment further allays my fears of protection, with plenty of padding and the ability to customise the compartments to take your camera kit. I was able to get an EOS 1Ds fitted with a 24mm-105mm lens in the main section, along with a couple of other smaller lenses plus my speedlite. However, I managed to get a lot more kit in the bag when swapping the 1Ds for the trusty 300D and its range of lenses. A couple of nice touches; the inclusion of the memory card pockets in the lid and a handy microfibre cloth to give everything a quick wipe before stowing it away.

Lowepro SlingShot 202 camera bag main compartment

Lowepro SlingShot 202 camera bag main compartment

While targeted at the photojournalist, for reasons outlined above, I think this bag would suit any photographer that wants to travel light but not feel compromised on protection. The bag is lightweight weighing 0.9kg and certainly easy to manoeuvre from the carry mode to ready mode and does sit comfortably on your shoulder if only carrying the bag to the car or in between shots on location, so eliminating the need to put fully over the shoulder.

If you are a current SlingShot user you won’t be disappointed with this updated model and if you’ve not purchased a camera bag yet, I’d certainly recommend adding this to your shopping list.

VALUE FOR MONEY
USABILITY
PRACTICAL
QUALITY
OVERALL

The Lowepro Slingshot 202 AW is available from Warehouse Express for £84.99.

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