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Think Tank Spectral 15 Shoulder Bag Review

Think Tank Spectral 15 Shoulder Bag Review  - We take a look at Think Tank's Spectral shoulder bag - a large bag which holds a DSLR and extra lenses.

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Think Tank Spectral 15 in Bags, Cases and Straps

Features
Handling & Performance
Verdict
Specification


 

The Think Tank Spectral 15 is designed to remain inconspicuous while shooting. It can fit a standard DSLR body with lens attached and 2-4 extra lenses plus accessories and a laptop/tablet. With a simple yet secure design, Think tank say it offers quality and ingenuity at a reasonable price. The Spectral 15 is the largest of the 3 bags in the Spectral shoulder bag range. The bag is available in black. Here, we find out how it performs. 
 

Think Tank Spectral 15 Features

The Think Tank Spectral 15 is treated with a water-resistant coating and is made of heavy-duty nylon tarpaulin and double PU coated P600D. The bottom is made from durable waterproof material, giving reassurance of protection when you put the bag down. 

The main compartment is a flap closure with trendy red stitching accents. The bag uses Fidlock magnetic latch auto locks, allowing you to open and secure the bag one-handed. 


 

There are 2 connection points on the front to accommodate different bag loads. Opening the flap reveals a velcro closure slim pocket on the inside of it, and on the front of the main compartment a soft felt coated slip pocket and a stationary pocket. Behind this is a large zip pocket that gives access to 2 additional pockets and the tablet compartment. The main compartment is further secured from weather and potential thievery by a zip-closure flap. 

Unzipping the flap gives access to the camera compartment where there are 4x movable dividers, and a velcro closure back pocket for a laptop. In here is also the all-weather cover for the bag and optional tripod straps which can connect to the bottom of the bag if needed.

The shoulder strap is adjustable and features a well-padded shoulder support. On the left-hand side is an elasticated mesh pocket and on top of the bag is a sturdy carry handle. On the back is another slim velcro fastening pocket and a slip allowing you to slide the bag over a suitcase handle for travelling. On the bottom of the bag are 4 material loops mentioned earlier, allowing you to attach the tripod straps. 


 

Key Features

  • Water repellant coating 
  • Fidlock magnetic clasp closure 
  • Fits DSLR with lens attached, up to 4 extra lenses and accessories
  • Fits 15.4" laptop and tablet
  • Fully adjustable padded shoulder strap
  • Fits onto a suitcase for travel

Think Tank Spectral 15 Handling & Performance

The Think Tank Spectral 15 looks sleek and feels very well made. The Fidlock closure system is new to us, and we like the ease of closure it brings. It also means that gaining access to the bag is quieter than velcro or zips but pulling it open can be a little awkward if you try to pull at the wrong angle. Use the attached tab to pull downwards and undo the clip and there shouldn't be an issue. 


 

We like the waterproof tough bottom to the bag and the fact the entire thing has a water repellant coating as well as an included all-weather cover for downpours. It's also versatile, with the ability to add tripod carrying straps if you wish. 


 

Having a zip closure main compartment adds peace of mind but it may have been nice to be able to have this section be removable for times when you might want to use the bag for other things whilst keeping your kit in one place. 

The main compartment is well padded and has a soft felt lining, so you feel that your kit is safe when it's in the bag. The shoulder strap is very comfortable and has a grippy bit in the middle. The strap is fully adjustable depending on your body shape and how you like to wear it - low or high up. 


 

The bag isn't the lightest of its kind, weighing in at 1.2 kilos but this is due to the dense quality materials used. The bag can feel hefty with a full load of a DSLR including extra lenses so you'll need to ensure that a shoulder bag is the best option for you when you need all your kit. 

Value For Money

The Think Tank Spectral 15 is available in the UK for £133 from Snapperstuff.com. Considering the quality of workmanship and space this bag offers, this seems reasonable value for money. Think Tank also offer a lifetime warranty on defects in material or workmanship, for peace of mind. 

Similar sized options include the Heralder 38 shoulder bag from Vanguard which is available for £94.99 from Amazon. This features a removable camera compartment and built-in tripod sling but is slightly less secure than the Think Tank model, lacking a zipped main compartment.  

Another option is the Lowepro 200 AW ProTactic shoulder bag available for £118.54 which holds a similar amount of kit but has less cubby holes for smaller equipment. 

If you want to compare more bags, have a look at these guides: 

 

Think Tank Spectral 15 Verdict

The Think Tank Spectral 15 looks and feels like a luxury camera bag for a reasonable price. Not only this, but it's extremely well made, innovative and doesn't shout 'camera bag' to look at. 

It is on the heavier side for a bag of this type so if that's a dealbreaker, it may not be the right bag for you. But the shoulder strap is really comfy and the ability to add tripod holding straps should you need to is a bonus that makes this versatile bag a strong contender. We are happy to highly recommend the bag.

Think Tank Spectral 15 Pros

  • Inconspicuous
  • Really well made
  • Lots of pockets for accessories
  • Well padded strap

Think Tank Spectral 15 Cons

  • Lack of pull out camera compartment
  • Heavier than similar sized bags

Features4.5/5
Handling4/5
Performance4.5/5
Value4.5/5
Overall Verdict

 

Think Tank Photo Spectral 15 Specifications

Bag type
StyleShoulder Bag
MaterialNylon
Dimensions
Weight1200g
Width410mm
Height320mm
Depth160mm

View Full Product Details

 

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