Whether you’re a professional, a semi-pro, or just an amateur, all photographers know how essential a good quality camera bag
is. No matter what skill level you’re at, protecting your pricy DSLR camera
and accessories is very
important. Most photographers are constantly out and about trying to capture that perfect image, whether that’s trekking up a mountain, getting caught in a downpour, or getting lost in the jungle.
Therefore, you’ll probably be after a camera bag that will protect your camera whatever the circumstances. There are lots of different designs of camera bag out there and the one that’s best for you will come down to your own personal tastes and preferred transport style. One bag that’s particularly useful, however, is the camera backpack.
Unlike normal backpacks, camera backpacks are specifically designed to keep you well-balanced. This makes them ideal for carrying your equipment comfortably and reducing the likelihood of back pain or strain. Camera backpacks also allow you to carry a significant amount of weight at one time, which is perfect for those wanting to carry several cameras, accessories, lenses, and laptops as well. If you see yourself as a bit of an adventurer, then a stabilizing camera backpack is definitely the product for you.
Camera backpacks are also often waterproof or have a built-in rain-cover inside. This means they’re perfect for outdoor photography when the weather is slightly unpredictable. As well as this, camera backpacks have set compartments inside which allow you to organize your equipment thoroughly. This makes them perfect for quick snapshots and reduces the amount of time spent rummaging around your bag looking for the perfect lens.
When it comes to buying the best camera backpack for you, it depends on a variety of factors as well as your own personal preferences. Firstly, you’re going to want to make sure your camera will fit in the backpack itself. Although most cameras will fit standard backpacks
, it’s still worth you measuring your camera size to ensure it’s not a tight squeeze! Some camera backpacks can fit several cameras as well as accessories, lenses, and laptops. If you’re a professional photographer then this style of camera backpack will probably be most suitable for you.
Many people also take their camera backpacks away with them as hand luggage on flights. Most camera backpacks are small enough to be classed as a carry-on (some will even advertise as being carry-on friendly), but you’ll want to double-check with your airline first, to prevent any extra charges.
When it comes down to the price of your new camera backpack, it depends on both the size of the backpack itself and how many features the product has. You can expect to pay anywhere between $60 and $250 for a camera backpack, with larger, more professional styles at the higher-end of this scale.
Professional-style camera backpacks tend to cost more as they can fit several cameras as well as accessories and laptops. They also tend to be more supportive as their users will be carrying heavier loads. As well as this, more expensive camera backpacks usually have several ports of entry, allowing the user to access their cameras quickly and efficiently.
If you’re new to the world of photography and are only using one camera, then there’s no need to splash out on a larger, more expensive backpack right away. Smaller backpacks are also ideal for travel as they can be used as hand-luggage.
Cheaper camera backpacks are available ($50 or less), but be aware that these types of bags may not be as supportive and may not protect your gear as effectively. If you’re a professional photographer then you may want to stay away from these cheaper camera backpacks altogether.
When choosing the best camera backpack for you, this depends entirely on your level of photography, what the product will be used for, and your own personal tastes when it comes to style and color. There are a few features, however, that we recommend keeping an eye out for to ensure you select the best possible backpack for you.
Here are some features we recommend shopping around for:
- Shaped Recesses for Camera and Equipment
- Waterproofing/ Rain Cover
- Front, Back, or Side Zips
Construction and Design
When choosing your ideal camera backpack, we recommend selecting a product that contains shaped recesses for your camera and equipment. Recesses for cameras are usually padded and allow you to grab your camera quickly and easily. Accessory and equipment recesses allow you to store different lenses and add-ons in their own compartments, making it easier when you have to change lenses quickly. They’re usually constructed from padded strips for security and are adjustable for your own personal needs.
Another feature we suggest keeping an eye out for is a product that contains several pockets. Now, pockets are handy little things anyway but are even more so when you’re a photographer. Pockets allow you to store additional accessories, such as memory cards and filters, easily and allows for easy access for quick changeovers. Some backpacks even include water bottle holders, which is perfect for those looking for a more adventurous photo in exotic surroundings.
Now one feature that we feel is pretty crucial is waterproofing or rain covers. As you will know, camera equipment is pretty pricy and isn’t something you want to get wet. Some backpacks are designed to be completely waterproof, which means you won’t have to spend any extra pennies on a rain cover. Some backpacks, however, are only showerproof, meaning they won’t protect your gear during a heavy downpour. This is when we suggest choosing a product with a rain cover as it will add extra protection and peace of mind!
Finally, we suggest selecting a camera backpack that contains several points of entry or zips as this will make it easier to gain access to your camera and accessories. Some backpacks are designed with front zips which can open the bag easily, but only once the backpack is removed. Zips at the back of the bag have the advantage of opening the bag whilst the user is wearing it, meaning you can take your shot quickly. Bags with side zips also allow you to remove equipment whilst wearing the bag and are more convenient for those snapping on the move. Some bags will only contain one of these zip features whereas some, pricier products, will contain all three.
Performance and Ease of Use
When it comes to caring for your new camera backpack, there really isn’t much to it. Quite often, camera backpacks are made from nylon or other waterproof material, making them a doddle to clean and care for. Simply chuck them in the washing machine on a low heat and your backpack is spick and span! For those that aren’t suitable for the washing machine, simply hand wash in warm water until the dirt is removed.
If you’re looking for an easy-to-use product that’s well-made for high-performance, then you’ll want to keep an eye out for products with padded straps. This will make it easier for you to carry the bag, add extra support, and make your whole photography experience that little bit more comfortable (this is specifically relevant for professional photographers carrying several cameras).
When it comes to the type of strap you’re after, we recommend choosing a backpack with two straps as this will ensure the bag and your camera are secure, and will cause less strain on your back. If you suffer with back pain then you may want to select a product that has a waist strap too, for extra support and security.
Fingers crossed, after reading through our handy little buying guide you’ve figured out what type of camera backpack is most suitable to your needs as well as all the features you would like included in your new product. This will make it a lot easier when it comes to narrowing down your options and selecting the ideal camera backpack for you and your next adventure! So let’s get looking at our top 5 picks, shall we?
Lowepro is an American-based brand created by mountaineer, photographer, and product innovator Greg Lowe. Greg’s love of photography and the great outdoors encouraged him to create backpacks and accessories that were built specifically for climbing and trekking. This meant his products had to be protective, comfortable, and lightweight, something Greg has achieved spectacularly. Today, Lowepro provides innovative and functional protection for all your technological gear!
We wanted to feature Lowepro’s ProTactic Camera Backpack due to its fantastic features and the fact that it’s available in two different sizes. This backpack can fit up to two DSLR cameras as well as a 15-inch laptop, tripod, and camera accessories. The bag also includes four access points, the turret loading top, easy-grab sides, and full back entry pocket.
The ProTactic allows for limitless set-ups due to its impressive slip lock strap system, and supports you at the shoulder blades, lumbar, and waist. As well as this, Lowepro’s bag has five modular accessories which include bottle pouches, accessory case, tripod cup, and cinch straps. It has dimensions of 13.70 x 10.63 x 19.21 inches, and weighs in at 5.72 pounds.
Hopefully, by now you’ve stumbled across your perfect camera backpack and are now busy scanning the web looking for your next photoshoot location. If, however, this isn’t the case then don’t you worry! We have purposefully selected brands that have lots of different products to offer - simply browse through their other collections to find the best camera backpack for you! So what are you waiting for? Get snapping!