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Choosing A Backpack

JJGEE Avatar
JJGEE 18 8.1k 18 England
26 Jul 2019 10:17AM
What criteria would you use ?

Is your sole consideration, after comfort, bodies / lenses it can hold or do you place importance on " accessories and other items "

For me these would be.
1) It needs to be able to have a tripod attached for tripod is 67cm closed without an head.
2) Carry a water bottle / snacks
3) Space for waterproof jacket and fleece & travel towel
4) Space for filters & adaptors / holders / viewing loupe

As for packing, do you reconfigure it every time you go out, assuming you do not take everything ( that would be too heavy for me ) with perhaps having several, what f stop calls icu and Shimoda core unit just swapping them out / in ?

There are so many options available these days it is, for me, getting increasingly difficult to make a decision but because of my item 1) above I am leaning towards a Shimoda with its tripod carrying pouch

Any thoughts would be appreciated as I am thinking of a refresh of my f stop Loka which I have had for over 6 years and has a broken clip on one of the straps.

sherlob Avatar
sherlob Plus
17 3.3k 133 United Kingdom
26 Jul 2019 10:37AM
Two criteria I add:

1. Aircraft luggage compatibility
2. Proper waist harness to help off load the weight of the bag off my shoulders

I have essential kit that I have the bag configured for 99% of the time, and some additional kit that is easily swapped around when needed. Very, very rarely I will completely reconfigure the bags interior to take my 120-300mm f2.8 lens with body attached.

The bag I am using currently is the Lowepro pro tactic - I've used it now for approx 18months and consider it the best bag I have owned.
Jasper87 Avatar
Jasper87 Plus
13 3.5k 165 England
26 Jul 2019 10:53AM
Over the years I have had/used several camera bags, some of them quite expensive but I always seem to return to a hiking back pack. My current is an Osprey Talon 22. I tend to take only one camera with lens and a couple of extra lenses at most. There are two zip pockets on the waist belt for spare batteries and cards. I then hook one of the tripod legs over the waist belt where it attaches to the pack. Add in a spare warm top, waterproof, snacks. Hiking bags are designed for comfort and carrying and don't shout out about what they are carrying.
mrswoolybill Avatar
mrswoolybill Plus
16 4.6k 2635 United Kingdom
26 Jul 2019 1:21PM
I have a sensible Lowepro with separate compartments for camera kit and for water bottle / oddments of shopping etc.

But I also have a pink flowery Cath Kidston rucksack that I have fitted out inside with foam rubber. It's much lighter than the Lowepro. It holds a camera body, a couple of lenses, the flash gun, with a separate pocket for small items. The advantage for me is that it doesn't scream out 'There's several grands worth of kit in here...' I got the idea from another member here.
JJGEE Avatar
JJGEE 18 8.1k 18 England
26 Jul 2019 1:54PM
Thanks for you thoughts.

Moira........ you have just, possibly, helped with a Christmas present for my niece... those Cath Kidston rucksacks with the lovely patterns are just the thing, but not for photography gear though Smile
mrswoolybill Avatar
mrswoolybill Plus
16 4.6k 2635 United Kingdom
26 Jul 2019 2:08PM
Get an off-cut of foam rubber, 2.5cm thick, and it's amazing what you can do... Wink
JackAllTog Avatar
JackAllTog Plus
14 6.4k 58 United Kingdom
26 Jul 2019 5:11PM
I've more bags than lenses, and never found one i'm really happy with, but then i've never spent over £50 on a bag. The ones you mention are around £200.

Often I do as Moira above and build my own inserts for larger bags.
altitude50 Avatar
altitude50 19 23.9k United Kingdom
26 Jul 2019 6:45PM
My requirements would be - quality materials, good padding, mesh pockets (Tamrac) inside and............very good quality zips. I'm not too worried about waterproofing as I never go out in the rain!
Current bags. Tamrac evolution 8 (for my S*ny a7) and Billingham 225 for the infrared Panasonic GX7 camera and lenses.
Ian-Jones Avatar
Ian-Jones 20 134 2 United Kingdom
27 Jul 2019 10:17PM
I've carry a 17 year old heavily faded LowePro bag so it doesn't scream I contain lots of expensive kit Wink It's got a lower compartment with padded seperators and a bigger upper unpadded compartment. The lower compartment will stow a medium size DSLR+lens such as a 5DIV + 24-105, or a a big DSLR like a 1DX, + peripherals like lens cleaning stuff. The upper compartment can take square filters, a medium, sized zoom lens like a 100-400mm, a big flash gun, manuals (+ food and water at a pinch). There's a front zip pouch which I use for cables and memory cards.

Fully loaded it can weigh up to 10kg, but it's got good shoulder straps and a belly strap. Basically it's a small back pack for cameras. I got given a bigger one, which was large singe compartment with loads of dividers and a stiff exterior, but you had to lay it flat to take anything out, and it was as bulky as a small rucksack, so it spent most of it's time in the wardrobe.


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