macrumors 6502
Original poster
Mar 13, 2011
Hi everyone! My name is Tatum and I'm highly interested in photography, and I was wondering if anyone could help me?

I'm looking for a good backpack to carry my Nikon D5000, 18-55 mm lens, and my 55-200 mm lens while I'm out exploring instead of carrying around the Nikon bag that came with the camera. This year, doing Easter, I'll be traveling to New York City and I think it'd be better for me and my camera and lenses to have backpack, plus I can store other stuff in the bag while I'm walking around NYC.
Question: What is the best, most inexpensive backpack that can hold maybe just one DSLR and a few lenses? I'd hate to carry around a backpack with a whole bunch of space for multiple cameras and lenses when I only have a camera and two lenses.

Sooner or later I'm going to need a tripod, so I might as well just kill two birds with one stone. :p

Question:: What tripod would you recommend that isn't very costly, but still very durable?

Thank you! I appreciate your help!


Artful Dodger

macrumors 68020

I have the larger unit, the EVO 8 but this would work nice for you or a smaller Kata unit. These will act as a sling and are comfortable to wear for long periods of time.

For the tripod, you could get a cheaper Manfrotto unit (Kit) but make sure about the weight of your gear and do yourself a big favor, be carful of cheap units as you will end up with photos that have blur because they just dont work as nice or even worse, fall apart really fast and you end up spending twice the amount you thought you would in a year.


deep diver

macrumors 68030
Jan 17, 2008
Manfrotto and Tamrac both make excellent products, and you will not go wrong. I have two Lowepro backpacks similar to the Tamrac Artful Dodger recommended. I also have a Think Tank holster that I really like. I just got a new Vanguard tripod with a pistol grip head and love it. As with most stuff in photography, you will do best going to a store and trying out whatever you are interested in.


macrumors 603
Oct 22, 2007
An Island in the Salish Sea
If you can, go and buy a used camera bag. A brand new bag shouts "New Camera Inside!" Plus, you can save lots of money. My most used camera bag is old Minolta over-the-shoulder bag I got for $15 at a Value Village. Often, used camera stores will have a bin of old bags, and even the pro shops will have bins of discounted bags. Save some bucks and buy used. If you use your bag to go hiking it's going to look used in a couple of weeks in any case.

Re: Tripods.... generally, buy the heaviest tripod you can afford to carry around. If you do a lot of hiking, you'll want a lighter one. If you work mostly in a studio, you'll come to appreciate the steadiness of a large clunky tripod. A really good tripod you never use because it's too big to carry is a waste of money. A lighter tripod that you use daily, even if it has limitations, is still better than a bigger tripod that gathers dust.



macrumors 68000
Nov 15, 2007
Since your going to be trekking about the streets of NYC - I would go with a good monopod. With practice you can make excellent pictures and video. I used one with a video camera and got excellent results.


macrumors 6502a
Sep 30, 2008
Dallas Metroplex
I have a Kata as my backpack and Gitzo 6x carbon fiber legs with a Markins head as my tripod. I initially bought a Manfrotto tripod and even though it was good, it was also heavy so I left it home often.

Here's a good article from Thom Hogan on tripods.



macrumors 6502a
Oct 15, 2008
I'll probably be chased out of here for suggesting something so cheap (the old saying "sturdy, light, cheap: pick two" comes to mind) but I took a gamble on this tripod and have been very pleased.


The legs are pretty sturdy, as is the head. It does drop slightly with my 55-250 IS lens zoomed all the way 250, but it isn't anything that can't be easily overcome. Sure, it may not be a $200 manfrotto, but it's pretty good.

Oh, and I love my Tamrac backpack.


macrumors 68040
Dec 28, 2009
For backpacks, you might wanna check out the Tamrac Evolution 8. I have this one and it's perfect for just a DSLR and a couple lenses. I have three lenses and they fit great in the backpack. The bag also has lots of room for other stuff. Only drawback is that there are a lot of pockets which make for easier pickpocketing (maybe).


If you like sling packs, I think any of the LowePro SlingShot 102, 202, 302 AW's should work out for you as well. The tripod attaches to the side so it sorta evens out the weight distribution. I had the 202AW sling for a little while.


I've had both of the bags above and wound up sticking with the Tamrac since it's a little more ergonomic and has more pockets.

As for a tripod, not sure how often you plan on using one but I have the Manfrotto MKC3-H01. It's a great little tripod and pretty inexpensive as well. I use mine infrequently so spending a lot on a tripod wasn't really an option for me. It's sturdy enough however it's not super rigid since it's more of a travel tripod. Still though, I think it's a great little tripod to have.

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