Camera bags! Every photographer knows there’s no such thing as too many bags and the perfect one doesn’t exist.
I’ve owned so many camera bags ever since I’ve been into photography. Every brand from Think Tank, Crumpler, Lowepro, the list goes on, you name it I’ve owned it or used it. The one bag that stood out to me was Peak Design’s Everyday Messenger. It lives up to it’s name of “everyday” because I use it for non-photography related things too.
It was only a matter of time until Peak design expanded their bag line and I’m glad they did. When I first saw the kickstarter I was a little skeptical of buying it because I’ve been using the Lowepro ProTactic AW450 which has been awesome for my needs but there’s been a few downsides the Everyday Backpack addresses. It’s 2lb lighter, more versatile, more pockets, rainproof (to a certain extent), more stylish, more comfortable to wear and the tripod holder distributes the weight better. The best part is it doesn’t look like a camera bag but rather a piece of art on your back.
I’m constantly on the go traveling all over the place and having a solid bag that makes my life easier and wont fall apart is absolutely crucial. I went with the 30L over the 20L because my usual setup is a Canon 5DS & 5DS-R camera body with a 70-200 attached on one and a 16-35 or 24-70 on the other, with the other in the bag and sometimes a Rokinon 14mm, filter holder and cases, SD/CF card holder, tripod, and other small accessories. All the little hidden pockets are perfect for small accessories. The 30L is supposed to fit overhead on any plane which is super important.
Details matter, no matter how big or small. Having handles on every side of the bag is really, really… really nice. You never know when you’re going to need them, usually when you’re in a rush. The metal clamp that latches the top flap is really cool. I’ve been using it on the everyday messenger and I strongly approve of it, I’ve never had any issues with it. The best part is their “expanding and compressing” bag feature which has been great. I’d be lying if I didn’t say I was in love with the dark grey color of the bag, it’s just really cool and nice to see a bag that’s a color other than black or some bright fruity color.
The extra support from the waist and cross-chest strap are nice additions. Definitely comes in handy on long hikes to distribute the weight better if your carry a lot of gear. Another really cool feature is the slot on the back side for putting it on the pull out handle of luggage horizontally, very helpful when you’re carrying it through the airport.
The bag dividers are really cool too! We saw this on the everyday messenger. They’re not just foam squares, they fold and bend so you can stack gear and customize them better. The origami thing they have going on is the coolest divider system I’ve seen on any bag. The ED backpack has the version 2, which is twice as thick and has 2 origami folds on each side.
It fits my new 15″ 2016 Macbook Pro perfectly, there’s also space for a tablet behind it if you need, up to a full size iPad (not the huge 12″ iPad Pro). And yes it does fit the previous generation 15″ Macbook Pro Retina as well.
Cons for this bag: You can’t have the dividers going down the bag vertically like I had hoped. They have to be horizontal because your gear could get damaged from the tripod along side it at the top section. Only small tripods fit on the inside… like really small. This isn’t a big con but I was able to customize the ProTactic 450 like that and it was nice when I wanted to keep my gear minimal on trips. Another con is it doesn’t fit 17″ laptops, most people use 15 or 13″ laptops anyways so it’s really situational. Just putting that out there if anyone was wondering.
Another thing is I actually wish the bag was bigger, a 40L would of been awesome (maybe next time?).
Unfortunately this bag didn’t fit everything I needed it to, this is definitely not a 2 camera body bag with lenses attached. I can definitely fit a 5DS with a 70-200 attached, 16-35 and 24-70, then I have to pick between the Rokinon 14mm or Formatt Hitech 100mm filter holder system (my filter case goes in the side flap). This is kind of a deal breaker, depending on the trip.
With all that being said though, it’s by far one of the most comfortable bags I’ve ever used. Peak Design got it right with this one, with the bag totally full and the tripod on the holder it really is super comfortable.
Would I recommend this bag? It depends on what your going to use it for.
If you’re not a serious landscape photographer then yes! My setup is pretty extensive with 2 bodies with pro lenses attached, 2 extra lenses and filters + accessories so this bag didn’t fit my particular needs. I would definitely use this bag for an Asia or Southern Europe trip where I’m not bringing as much gear. If you’re not bringing all the gear you own with you this is a clear winner. The messenger bag was basically flawless but this one fell flat in the excessive amount of gear area, other than that I’m very happy with it.
If you want to purchase the bag you can do so here.
Thanks for reading!
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