Camera Bag Recommendation

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by AirborneAngel, Mar 3, 2011.

  1. AirborneAngel macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2007
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    #1
    Hey guys,

    I'm looking for a camera bag (either a shoulder bag/backpack) that falls somewhere in the $30-$50 range. This bag should be able to hold a DSLR with a 70-200 f/2.8 attached, and 2-3 smaller lenses, any recommendations?

    Thanks!
     
  2. OreoCookie macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2001
    Location:
    Sendai, Japan
    #2
    You should not skimp on a bag, $50 should be the lower limit, actually: putting equipment for $1500+ into a cheap bag is just asking for trouble!

    I have a Lowepro Nova 2 AW and Nova 5 AW. The first one will be too small and the second one perhaps a little large, but there are two sizes in between, the 4 AW may be the best fit. They're not pretty, but they're very sturdy and have rain covers. I use the small one to walk around and the big one to travel with my whole equipment. I'm eyeing for a Domke bag as a walkaround bag, but I'll get one when I'm back in the US (they're ridiculously expensive here in Europe).

    Also, there different styles of bags, some are backpacks, some slingbags and then `traditional' camera bags. Besides Lowepro, there are other reputable companies (e. g. Kata) and if you plan on owning only one bag, I'd always take one that seems slightly too large. You'll notice that the supposedly empty space fills up quickly ;)
     
  3. jabbott macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2009
    #3
    I use the Tamrac Express 7 messenger style bag and it works quite well. Here is the configuration I have with it:
    • Canon Rebel T2i mounted to a 24-70mm f/2.8L in the center pouch
    • 70-200 f/2.8L in the right-most pouch
    • 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5 and EF 2x Extender in the left-most pouch
    • Charger, 10-22mm lens hood, spare batteries, lens pen and lens caps in front pouch
    Alternatively I can switch out the 2x Extender for a 50mm f/1.4. The bag is unfortunately not tall enough to hold a 70-200 f/2.8L with the camera mounted to it, but I think that would make the bag too tall/unwieldy. I've been on a 12 mile hike with this bag through Canyonlands National Park and it wasn't too bad... I think I would prefer a slightly wider shoulder strap or a backpack for the next long hike though. For most day-to-day use however I think it is perfectly sufficient, and it isn't obvious that you are carrying camera equipment until you start pulling it out.
     
  4. fcortese macrumors demi-god

    fcortese

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2010
    Location:
    Big Sky country
    #4
    I agree with OC about not skimping on the bag. I have the Domke F-4AF bag and it's great!. I have my T1i with 18-200 lens, a 50mm 1.8, and a 17-40 f4 in it and I have room for one more lens. Side, front and back pockets have plenty of room for tons of accessories.
     
  5. OreoCookie, Mar 3, 2011
    Last edited: Mar 3, 2011

    OreoCookie macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2001
    Location:
    Sendai, Japan
    #5
    I was thinking about that exact same bag. Alas, it costs ~€150-200 here :mad: (That has to do with extra levies on textile items I'm told, ugh!)
     
  6. User3977 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2010
    #6
    check out sams, they have a nice bag for about 50. it holds all the gear you mention and so far seems to hold up pretty good. i have had it for 3 years and not a rip or anything in the seams so im pretty happy with it.
     
  7. Phrasikleia macrumors 601

    Phrasikleia

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2008
    Location:
    Over there------->
    #7
    I have purchased three LowePro bags from eBay seller sellnsend. If I recall correctly, they're in Colorado. Anyway, the bags are always much cheaper than through most other retailers, get shipped out immediately, and are brand new, still with all plastic wrapping and tags and everything.

    I would highly recommend you look at the LowePro Flipside series. I started with a 200 and now have the 400AW. They flip around to the front and extend out in front of you like an elevated table so you can change lenses with both hands free of the bag. Very handy for situations where you're on a steep hill or somewhere muddy--basically anywhere you would not want to set the bag down.

    It's also nice for pickpocket protection in busy cities, since the opening is facing your back and not the people behind you.
     
  8. gameface macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2010
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    #8
    I bought my Lowepro from them as well. Best prices I could find anywhere, new in bag with tags.

    I got the Slingshot 302 AW because of the side access. Great for walking around the city and just spinning the bag around and having access to the camera. I can fit my body, with battery grip and my 100-300 Sigma (bigger than the 70-200) in that bag, plus every other lens I want, all my hoods, batteries, charger, loupe, mic for audio, field recorder, etc if I really wanted to. I can't recommend this bag enough.

    I had a cheap bag once and while I didn't damage any gear, I don't know how I didn't. I really don't know how I lived with a crappy bag before. You are protecting an expensive piece of gear, don't treat it like crap.
     
  9. Phrasikleia macrumors 601

    Phrasikleia

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2008
    Location:
    Over there------->
    #9
    Yeah, the worst stories I've heard are of zippers failing and allowing gear to fall out and come crashing to the ground. Best avoided!
     
  10. Laird Knox macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2010
    #10
    I completely agree with this. I agonized over the Gura Gear bag before I finally bit the bullet for a trip to Gautemala. Turned out to be one of the best purchases I've made.

    As for the OP, the Gura Gear bag is probably overkill unless they are planning on adding bodies and lenses to the collection. (I carry three bodies and multiple lenses and flashes in mine.) Definitely look around but be prepared to spend a bit more.
     
  11. Designer Dale macrumors 68040

    Designer Dale

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2009
    Location:
    Folding space
    #11
    As others have said, a camera bad isn't a bag, it's a protective transport system for your valuable equipment. I have a Crumpler 7 Million Dollar Home as my travel bag. It holds my camera and three lenses including the one on the camera. There is plenty of room for flashes and other things. It fits under the seat on a plane and passes inspection with ease. My walk a round bag is a Kata backpack. It will fit my camera (canon XSi) and two extra lenses including my Sigma 120-400 with the hood reversed. The model I bought was the mid-sized 20. I should have gone with the larger 30.

    Kata 3 in 1 20

    Crumpler 7MDH

    Dale
     
  12. AirborneAngel thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2007
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    #12
    Thanks so much for all the advice guys!

    After doing a good amount of research I decided to go with the Crumpler 5 Million Dollar Home, as I think it will more than exceed my needs, and is only ~$70. It can't fit a body with a 70-200 attached, but that shouldn't be a problem!
     
  13. Ish macrumors 68000

    Ish

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2004
    Location:
    UK
    #13
    Re your last sentence, the danger of pickpockets is what's worrying me about the flip bags that open at the side. I saw these flip bags and that was the first thing that struck me. When I'm out and about, I can't be thinking of my bag 100% of the time. At the moment I use a laptop bag that can hold my laptop and also my camera and some books for when we fly, but I'd like to get a camera bag that also holds a laptop at some point.

    A friend of mine has a Kata 466i/467i, don't know which and I like the look of that. The zip goes across the back from side to side but you need to really pull the bottom part down a way to get to the camera. Kata have a navigator on their site where you can specify which camera and laptop you want to fit in the bag. Handy if you only want to pack the one camera.

    For walking about 'incognito' I like the look of the black canvas Domke f-5xb.
     
  14. fcortese macrumors demi-god

    fcortese

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2010
    Location:
    Big Sky country
    #14
    Good Luck, Airborne. Dale, I've done the opposite-I use the Lowepro ProTrekker 300AW backpack for travel-It also fits under the seat (we use regional jets out here to get to a hub airport to catch the big boys) and my Demke F-4AF as my walk around. Either way you cut it, this photography "hobby" has lots of accessories that quickly become necessities!
     
  15. Phrasikleia macrumors 601

    Phrasikleia

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2008
    Location:
    Over there------->
    #15
    The Flipside series bags do not open at the side. The opening flap is against your back. You swivel the bag around to the front to access it.

    The Lowepro bag with the side access is called "Fastpack," not Flipside.
     
  16. Ish macrumors 68000

    Ish

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2004
    Location:
    UK
    #16
    I hadn't realised until I read your post that there were two types. Thanks!
     
  17. gameface macrumors 6502

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    Sep 11, 2010
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    #17
    Slingshot as side access too.
     
  18. OreoCookie macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2001
    Location:
    Sendai, Japan
    #18
    I don't want to depress you even more (in terms of money), but it may really make sense to have not one, but two bags: one to hold and store all of your equipment and another one you can use if you go on trips. My small bag, for instance, fits in my mountain biking backpack.
     
  19. AirborneAngel thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2007
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    #19
    I think for the time being (until I have enough money to significantly upgrade my gear) the bag I got will hold all my current stuff: a body, 50mm prime, 18-55 kit lens, 70-200 2.8, a charger, memory cards, some filters, and some other stuff. At the end of the day, I can always leave some of the stuff behind when I go shoot if it comes to that!
     
  20. OreoCookie macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2001
    Location:
    Sendai, Japan
    #20
    A bag is an essential part of your gear. Depending on what you shoot, a second, smaller bag can be a blessing or even a bare necessity. I wouldn't even think about going hiking with my big bag.
     
  21. Phrasikleia macrumors 601

    Phrasikleia

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2008
    Location:
    Over there------->
    #21
    I have a little bag (Flipside 200) and a big one (Flipside 400AW), but I rarely ever use the little one anymore. I usually just empty out the big one to make it lighter if I'm going hiking. I suppose that's because the big one has more padding and has a rain cover, and those features are good to have when you're hiking. The only time I use the 200 anymore is when I know I'll be going to a museum or site where I'll have to put my bag in a locker. Those lockers can be pretty small.

    I also have an even smaller holster-style bag, but neither of my cameras will even fit into it with a lens attached, so I'll sometimes use it just to carry an extra lens if I'm walking around a museum.
     

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