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Thread: Review of (mainly) various shoulder camera bags

  1. #1
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    Default Review of (mainly) various shoulder camera bags

    First time writing a review so do move to the appropriate location if i posted wrongly..


    Decided to write this as perhaps many photographers might be looking to not use their given bag from the manufacturer for various reasons or perhaps need a bigger bag.... And i cant seem to find bag many bag reviews
    Well, here goes =)


    For now, i use a lowepro event messenger 250 for my everyday travels, even when theres no camera inside.

    Lowepro event messenger 250
    What dividers are given
    Google as i think previous owner didnt give me all

    What equipment can be put inside in its maximum capacity.
    6D mounted with a 70-200 F4L(hood reversed)(placed horizontally) The 2.8 kinda fits but tight
    24-70 F4L
    600EX-RT
    85mm 1.8 + 16-35 mk ii (on top of each other)
    500ml water bottle on the outside pocket
    small umbrella on the opposite side pocket

    Review
    The good
    For one, this bag is boxy. It will keep its shape even if theres no camera to provide an internal pressure to push out. You may find this good or bad cos it does keep whatever inside from being squashed, unlike the exchange messenger (Based on other reviews, i dont have it).
    For two, it can put essentially 4 70-200 side by side without a fuss. Basically meaning its quite tall =)
    For three, it has a really decent front pocket that can store stuff, there are enough pictures online to give you a rough idea..
    For four, it has a really nice computer/tablet compartment inside that can put a computer/tablet/A4 size paper. Has a similar section right behind the bag. I just throw my papers there
    Will add more if i think of more

    The bad
    Sometimes too boxy, people know its a camera bag and i get asked a lot if i brought a camera. Could have been more discreet like copying the pro messenger series or thinktank retrospective
    Nothing much else


    To finish it off... i got it for $35, no complaints about functionality.



    NEXT.. Crumpler 5MDH/6MDH/7MDH (MDH = Million Dollar Home)


    To start this off... you must know that there are many editions of crumpler bags.. 2010 edition/etc etc etc...
    but the main diff is how many velcro sections there are and whether the front pouch is held by a button or velcro. The older models have two, newer one. Velcro for the older, button for the newer.

    Updated 9/7
    AND AND AND...
    The older edition vs newer edition is distinguished by whether the front two are visible from the outside
    There is an even older one but dont get it, no velcro silencer IIRC
    Back to post-2010, the dividers are also different.
    The 2010 model's dividers are spongier and softer. the flappy part also isnt reinforced by a harder internal "cardboard" whereas the newer ones's felt isnt as thick and therefore harder. the flap portion also is reinforced making the whole thing harder..

    I personally prefer the older one.


    One other thing to note... Crumpler's dividers and bags are fully smooth velcro. meaning you can pretty much stick the pokey part of the divider onto anywhere vs most other brand that I've tried where there is only a selected strip of smoother velcro (on the bag. The dividers might not even have smooth velcro for you to stick on) where you can adhere the pokey part too. PM me if you dont understand, may be confusing btw..

    I like crumpler in general, built to last and looks decent with their colours which are a little more adventurous. Of course, there are the generic black, brown, dark colours as well. But options are always good =)



    5MDH
    What dividers are given
    Two dividers

    What equipment can be put inside in its maximum capacity.
    Mounted xxxD with 18-55 (placed horizontally)
    50mm
    430ex ii. maybe 600 even?

    Review
    This bag is seriously just an overpriced version of the canon generic bag. Two dividers make the bag into three sections. Put the body in the middle with the two additional stuff at the side. Simple.


    6MDH
    What dividers are given
    Two big ones with flappy section (A)
    Two medium ones with flappy section (B)
    Two medium ones without flappy section (C)

    Arrange the dividers so that
    The A's cut the bag into three compartments equally
    Place B's in the middle section horizontally
    Place C's horizontally in the right and left cutting them into front and back

    What equipment can be put inside in its maximum capacity.
    70D + 10-18mm mounted (placed vertically in the centre compartment)
    40mm(right below the grip section
    water bottle and umbrella in either left or right
    55-250 and 50mm in right or left


    Review
    Can definitely put more stuff vs the 5MDH.
    Good for travel i guess?
    The newer version has the tripod strap and small tablet compartment behind. Useful


    6MDH Backpack
    Added on 28/6
    What dividers are given
    Can't recall cos sold it off but decent number

    What equipment can be put inside in its maximum capacity.
    One body plus mounted lens
    A few other lenses and etc etc..
    Wasn't a big fan of this bag so can't recall much off it

    Review
    Just a normal camera backpack. Nothing to shout about.. I do like the newer fabric of the crumpler though and this is no exception =)


    7MDH
    This is the bag I carry for holidays

    What dividers are given
    Two big ones with flappy section (A)
    Two medium ones with flappy section (B)
    Two medium ones without flappy section (C)
    Two small ones without flappy section (D)

    Just make sure you put A dividing the bag into three parts. The rest just play and have fun


    What equipment can be put inside in its maximum capacity.
    6D + 16-35 mk ii attached (placed vertically in the centre compartment)
    40mm below grip
    50mm 1.8 + 35mm on left. x100 on top of them
    70-200 + 500ml water bottle on right
    Really a lot of stuff for a sling bag


    Review
    The good
    Even bigger than the 6MDH, duh...
    its taller so can put more stuff on top of one another =). Always a good thing
    The newer version has the tripod strap and small tablet compartment behind. Useful

    The bad
    the front pocket sucks for all the models. just a mesh pocket and a main pocket
    Sucky organiser.


    Small subsection


    Crumpler Haven (L)
    Added 8/7
    What dividers are given
    Two small dividers with flaps
    One small divider without flap

    What equipment can be put inside in its maximum capacity.
    Like the 5MDH give and take..

    Review
    The good
    Well, just like the 5MDH, normal.
    On the plus side, its a camera bag insert. Converts any bag into a camera bag provided your bag is big enough.
    There is the S and M version, just that i didnt buy it




    NEXT... Lowepro Nova 5 AW


    Lowepro Nova 5 AW
    What dividers are given
    A lot...
    Arrange it in whatever way you like.

    What equipment can be put inside in its maximum capacity.
    Two elinchrom battery packs
    Two bulbs

    OR

    EIGHT 70-200 F4L's

    OR

    EIGHT 6D'S

    OR

    EIGHT whatever you mind can think of.. Just not with battery grips


    Review
    The good
    Can put a lot of stuff.
    Has an AW cover, always good

    The bad
    Damn heavy after everything in..
    I dont think its very useful besides storing stuff. Treat it as a storeroom for your gear. But watch out for fungus haha


    NEXT... Bagpacks/backpacks
    There are different kinds of backpacks, duh...
    Basically, two main kinds of bagpacks. One that is fully camera bag and one that has one half camera stuff and other half own stuff. Just a disclaimer, i dont have any of the former but i have used a couple of the latter. The 6MDH falls in the latter category.
    Of course, there's the MindShift rotation series but thats an outlier.

    Added 8/7
    Actually, you must also know how the bag opens. For example, a lot of bags can open from the side. Like you swing it to one shoulder and you can access your gear from the side. Some can only open from the back, better security. Some can only open from the front, Crumpler 6MDH. For me personally, side is a must. but that's me.


    NEXT... Lowepro Adventura 170
    Added 8/7
    Lowepro Adventura 170
    Cut the long review short... 5MDH-ish but lowepro and cheaper. This has a belt strap thing though.


    NEXT... Kata DL 443
    Added 8/7
    Kata DL 443
    What dividers are given
    Two large dividers with flaps
    Three smaller dividers with flaps
    Use it the way it came. Furthermore, the velcros on the bigger ones limit you on how you can arrange the dividers

    What equipment can be put inside in its maximum capacity.
    Abit hard to say..
    Basically, the bag is split into 6 spaces.

    1|2|3
    4|5|6

    I have put these before:
    1: 28mm 2.8 IS USM
    2: 35mm ART
    3: 600 EX-RT
    4: A short lens cos the viewfinder of the body will protrude into this section
    5: 6D + 24-70? Forgot
    6: 70-200 F4l IS USM

    Review
    The good
    Can put decent stuff inside. can easily take out two items to put umbrella and waterbottle
    Rain cover, always good to have
    Side pouches. Nothing to say about it
    Small zips and pouches inside the top flap, quite the norm

    The bad
    The individual spaces are small. Tight but snug fit. Thing are just tight fit in general. But i guess if all you need is that space then this bag works. Quite a compact bag i must say.




    A lot of bags are a generic two divider system to split the bag into three spaces. So, just keep that in mind =). Just a matter of brand, colour, material, etc etc



    NEXT...
    I'll fill in when i have the time.


    Good night
    Last edited by gardna; 9th July 2016 at 12:26 AM. Reason: add stuff

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Review of (mainly) various shoulder camera bags

    reserved for additional reviews


    BTW, do constantly re-read the original post as will keep adding stuff..



    NEXT... Bagpacks/backpacks
    There are different kinds of backpacks, duh...
    Basically, two main kinds of bagpacks. One that is fully camera bag and one that has one half camera stuff and other half own stuff. Just a disclaimer, i dont have any of the former but i have used a couple of the latter. The 6MDH falls in the latter category.
    Of course, there's the MindShift rotation series but thats an outlier.

    Added 8/7
    Actually, you must also know how the bag opens. For example, a lot of bags can open from the side. Like you swing it to one shoulder and you can access your gear from the side. Some can only open from the back, better security. Some can only open from the front, Crumpler 6MDH. For me personally, side is a must. but that's me.

    Added 10/7
    Another thing is whether the compartment above can be combined with the camera compartment.
    Essential if you need long lenses >=300mm. You wouldnt want to buy a bag then realise it cant fit your needs, right? Crumpler 6MDH bagpack cant. Lowepro Transit 350AW can, just saying...

    Added 10/7
    Kata bags...

    Kata has not been overtaken by manfrotto so these bags are outdated but still really good. If you can get one at a cheap price, please do =)
    Some bags arent the latest edition so please google and compare before committing to a purchase


    Kata 3N1-20
    Google on the different ways to use the slings. 3N1 stand for 3 in 1, seriously(correct me if im wrong though). Can carry in three ways. Pictures speak a thousand words.

    BTW, numbers ending in 10,20,30 dont have laptop compartment. 11,22,33 have. Correct me if im wrong again..


    What dividers are given
    Google as Im sure seller didnt give me all.

    What equipment can be put inside in its maximum capacity.
    6D + mounted lens. Not 70-200 F4L. can but will be tight.
    85mm
    35 ART
    24-70 F4L IS
    another lens of similar height.

    70-200 cant fit in as bag is not fat enough..
    Can put lying down, tried before


    Review
    The good
    Decent bagpack size. No idea what the size of the 3N1-10 is but this is already too small for me so not going to buy that. You can buy and review for fellow forumers =)
    I dont like the space on top as too small for me. Does fit a decent amount of gear. Again, as i said, test first then buy. Got rain cover, always good

    The bad
    If its good enough space for you, then go ahead and purchase it.
    Im not saying the bag sucks but its just too small for me. I need to carry another messenger bag for my own stuff.


    Kata 3N1-33DL
    Later version of the 3N1 series.
    IIRC, there is the non-DL series 11,22,33. Their laptop compartment is outside and not in the main compartment.

    AND AND AND, for the older version, you must buy the tripod attachment system separately. For this it's just straps. Not sure if they came with them but my seller gave them.

    The design is also different.. besides colour and what ive stated. The flaps open differently. the older version side straps hinge on the base while the newer design hinges at the flap part. If you dont get it, google. Still dont, then PM


    What dividers are given
    Google. Hard to explain..

    The good
    I like it. Big enough top space for me. The 3N1-20 has enough camera space but just not enough personal space for me..
    I can fit a 1.5L water bottle horizontally into the 33DL, just saying.. Use that as a gauge. Might be important if you need water on a long trip trekking or whatever.. Rain cover also given..

    The bad
    Might be too big if you only want to carry fewer equipment. But then again, bigger better than smaller so your call in the end. I'll go for bigger =)


    Lowepro Transit AW350
    Will fill in...
    Last edited by gardna; 10th July 2016 at 11:23 PM.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Review of (mainly) various shoulder camera bags

    reserved...........

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    Member e69087's Avatar
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    Default

    Nice review, thanks 4 sharing.
    May i know where n when did u get the Lowepro event messenger bag for $35? Is it in Sing dollars?

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Review of (mainly) various shoulder camera bags

    haha. no problem

    Second hand as stated, thats why number of dividers im not too sure
    @e69087

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    Default Re: Review of (mainly) various shoulder camera bags

    All my bags here are purchased second hand as you can already see how often i switch bags, so makes more financial sense to buy second hand

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    Default

    Thanks for the reply.

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    Nice detailed review I think camera bags are always a weak spot for us loll

    Buying second hand may be cheaper but I will always be careful due to hygiene issues *sweats*

  9. #9

    Default Re: Review of (mainly) various shoulder camera bags

    Can we contribute to this thread? I don't mind putting my view on a few shoulder bag I have

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by DSolZ View Post
    Can we contribute to this thread? I don't mind putting my view on a few shoulder bag I have
    That's great.
    Any opinion on the Peak Design 15" camera bag?
    Thought of getting one but it's a bit pricey.

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Review of (mainly) various shoulder camera bags

    Quote Originally Posted by keithwee View Post
    Nice detailed review I think camera bags are always a weak spot for us loll

    Buying second hand may be cheaper but I will always be careful due to hygiene issues *sweats*

    For the price, i cant complain. i got the 6MDH backpack for $40, sold it for $80.


    Haha, i guess you're right. Come to think of it, i dont even wipe it before using, lol

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Review of (mainly) various shoulder camera bags

    Quote Originally Posted by DSolZ View Post
    Can we contribute to this thread? I don't mind putting my view on a few shoulder bag I have

    Sure, i guess i can add it in the two reserved posts i have? so that they'll be right on top for the rest to see

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