Old 01-13-2014, 03:06 AM   #1
ken45
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Default What Camera Bag Do You Use?

Camera equipment gets talked about a lot, but bags much less so. I'm looking for a new bag now and am really having a tough time finding something I like. I'd also prefer not to end up with 3 different bags. One photographer I talked to yesterday said he has 5!

I am hoping in this thread that photographers will share what kind of bag they use, what it can hold, and some of the Pros and Cons of that bag.

Right now I'm looking for a backpack that can hold 2 DSLRs, a 70-200 f2.8, and 4-5 smaller lenses, with a tripod strap, laptop storage space, and can fit within a 21.5" x 15" x 9" dimensions so I can take it as a carryon with an International Airline who might be a stickler for carryon dimensions. I've found several that come close, but nothing that really nails what I'm going for. I figured I might get some excellent suggestions from here.
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Old 01-13-2014, 03:56 AM   #2
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I use one of these guys : http://www.thinktankphoto.com/produc...-backpack.aspx

A bit small for what you want tho, but they have bigger ones. Expensive but quality is top-notch! Don't have much bad to say about mine. Does everything I need it to.

This one seems to fit what you're looking for : http://www.thinktankphoto.com/produc...-backpack.aspx
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Old 01-13-2014, 04:35 AM   #3
Dennis A. Livesey
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As motion picture camera assistant for decades, I spent those decades looking for "the perfect bag."

The truth of the matter, equipment changes and set ups change so it is elusive goal.

I have two Canon 40D's, three zooms small-medium-large, a flash, filters, batteries, flash card pouch, a remote and a tripod.

I am in the Think Tank camp. I go with them for their clever, but not showy, design and stay for the bullet proof durability.

I use the small Streetwalker backpack for most of the time. I then use at rail events the Modular Set of up to six bags on my waist.

I also use one of their briefcase bags for...a briefcase. (Most of the time) With the Urban Disguise, I breath easy when I want to bring just a camera, lens and knowing it will be safe.

Yeah, I drank the Kool-Aid...
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Old 01-13-2014, 08:41 AM   #4
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The Troy uses a Tamrac bag that is a backpack.

That way you can hike your gear and have your hands free.

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Old 01-13-2014, 11:52 AM   #5
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I've head this one for a few months and like it pretty good. I carry two DSLR's with a 24-105mm and 70-300mm attached to each. It may be too small though for your needs.

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produc...ck_350_aw.html
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Old 01-13-2014, 02:12 PM   #6
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My shoulders hurt just thinking about carrying all that stuff!
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Old 01-13-2014, 06:06 PM   #7
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I have this bag:

Holds:
2x bodies, 50/1.4, 70-200/4, 100-400, 17-40, 28-105, 28/2.8, 17-85, 2 battery chargers, 4 extra batteries, a bunch of filters, some cables and other misc stuff.
It's heavy as hell with all this stuff, but it works. I sometimes remove some lenses and put flash equipment in those slots. I like this bag because it's big and modular.
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Old 01-13-2014, 06:47 PM   #8
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I have the same bag, Southern Troy!
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Old 01-13-2014, 06:59 PM   #9
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No backpacks here. Can't draw and fire from a backpack, and I'm not a fan of putting my camera bag down anyplace where it can get filthy. That's an e-ticket to problems.

I use a LowePro Classified 200AW. It looks like a briefcase, but it holds a D4 w/24-120 f/4, D7000 w/70-200 f/4, 10-24 f/3.5-4.5, SB-600 and lots of do-dads (memory, batteries, filters). It has a massive (non-scratching) zipper on top that allows me to draw either camera, pop the lens cap and I'm ready for action.

I always carry an empty LowePro TopLoader Pro 75 in my checked bag. That will hold a pro camera and up to a 70-200mm zoom, plus some light accessories. If I have to do any climbing or serious hiking with one camera, I always stick it in that. It has saved my bacon a couple of times.
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Old 01-13-2014, 07:24 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ken45 View Post
Camera equipment gets talked about a lot, but bags much less so. I'm looking for a new bag now and am really having a tough time finding something I like. I'd also prefer not to end up with 3 different bags. One photographer I talked to yesterday said he has 5!
I have 4 bags. Three Tamracs and one Lowepro. They are all used for different purposes.

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No backpacks here. Can't draw and fire from a backpack, and I'm not a fan of putting my camera bag down anyplace where it can get filthy. That's an e-ticket to problems.
Can you explain this? I've been putting my bags on the ground for years and have never had any problems.

And backpacks are great when hiking long distances.

Last edited by JimThias; 01-13-2014 at 07:26 PM.
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Old 01-13-2014, 07:29 PM   #11
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I have 4 bags. Three Tamracs and one Lowepro.
This is Jim going railfanning...




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Old 01-13-2014, 07:32 PM   #12
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Old 01-13-2014, 08:07 PM   #13
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Can you explain this? I've been putting my bags on the ground for years and have never had any problems.
Jim,

I primarily go with shoulder bags because when I hike long distances, I travel light. Also, I virtually never "set up", as some folks do....meaning I don't use a tripod for daytime shots. Generally, if I need to carry more than one camera or lens, I need to be able to use them quickly, and the backpack just doesn't fill the bill. I've looked at sling bags and something like the Tamrac Velocity 10x might work for me. Conventional backpacks would not.

As for the cleanliness concern.....well, I am a cleanliness freak. I take really good care of my stuff. I've had probelms with dust in the past, so if I can help it, I don't change lenses in the field and I don't put my bag anyplace where the interior might get flithy. Some places, like steam roundhouses are so greasy and grubby that I may even limit what I will bring in there.
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Old 01-13-2014, 09:48 PM   #14
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I have the same bag, Southern Troy!
My only real complaint about the bag is that when you actually wear it as a backpack with both straps, not just hanging one over one shoulder, is, it does not breathe. At ALL. So in the summer time, after a long hike, it's creating a real hot spot on your back. I about passed out a couple years ago after a multi-mile hike with that on fully loaded.
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Old 01-13-2014, 10:08 PM   #15
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I'm too busy foaming to notice!
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Old 01-13-2014, 11:49 PM   #16
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Whatever you go with, make sure you don't put your camera in the bag on its side...that's an absolute no-go. [/Mike B reference]
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Old 01-14-2014, 12:48 AM   #17
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Whatever you go with, make sure you don't put your camera in the bag on its side...that's an absolute no-go. [/Mike B reference]
Let it go, Chris. Let it go. It's been five years now.

Have a good cry and let it go.

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Old 01-14-2014, 01:58 AM   #18
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Let it go, Chris. Let it go. It's been five years now.

Have a good cry and let it go.

Try almost 7 years:
http://forums.railpictures.net/showp...0&postcount=53

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Old 01-14-2014, 02:02 AM   #19
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Let it go, Chris. Let it go. It's been five years now.

Have a good cry and let it go.

He strikes me as the kind of guy that don't let things go...
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Old 01-14-2014, 02:32 AM   #20
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Crap - time is going way too fast.
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Old 01-14-2014, 04:41 AM   #21
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Old 01-14-2014, 04:43 AM   #22
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........ Some places, like steam roundhouses are so greasy and grubby that I may even limit what I will bring in there.
Amazing what a couple of wadded up trash bags can accomplish with regard to this very issue.

BTW - Any factory setting is going to be dirty.


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Whatever you go with, make sure you don't put your camera in the bag on its side...that's an absolute no-go. [/Mike B reference]

Lemme guess, all the pixels fall to the bottom and won't get properly disbursed again?

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Old 01-14-2014, 06:54 PM   #23
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Thanks to all who replied. Some very helpful ideas. I'm still not totally sure what direction to go, but I think I may rent a couple bags to see how they work for me.
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Old 01-14-2014, 07:13 PM   #24
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No backpacks here. Can't draw and fire from a backpack
Do those staged steam run by's sneak up on you or something?

I have a Lowepro Compudaypack. Fits 2 bodies, 3 lenses, 2 flashes, and misc other junk relevant to the cause.

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Old 01-14-2014, 10:10 PM   #25
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Do those staged steam run by's sneak up on you or something?

I have a Lowepro Compudaypack. Fits 2 bodies, 3 lenses, 2 flashes, and misc other junk relevant to the cause.

Loyd L.
Hi Loyd,

Out west, you need both long telephoto and wide angle lenses for almost every sequence. You don't have time to change lenses, nor would you want to around coal-burning steam engines. So, when I get off the train, I have two bodies, each with a lens attached. One will generally be in a case, because I can only "protect" one loose camera and still have a free hand for boarding/deboarding.....and climbing, which is sometimes necessary. A back-pack just won't permit me to quick-swap the wide angle camera for the long-rifle.

Actually on charters and organized photo shoots, some of the best frames I come home with are not the "staged" run-bys, but images of crews working on the engines, or making up trains in the yard. I also do a lot of "lone-wolfing", meaning non-charter stuff where I am just gunning for targets of opportunity at some railroad or museum. In those cases, I may carry the camera stowed for protection (a busted D4 or 70-200mm will set you back a few bucks), but I need to be able to access it rapidly for a shot I see developing.

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