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Thread: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

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    Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    Let's face it. Bag makers don't really think about us medium format users when designing their bags.

    That said, anybody with a nice bag to recommend for Hasselblad 500 series user who plans to travel overseas for shoots?

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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    It all depends on what you intend to put inside. I use a Think Tank Urban Disguise 50, it fits a medium format camera, a couple of lenses, my 15" MacBook Pro and accessories. Quality is better than any other brand I've used.

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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    WL, I have a Lowepro Vertex 200AW that holds my 500CM, 4 film backs, with enough space for 4 CF/CFi lenses, my 6093T Proshade, extra rolls of film, filters and filter holder. if you're keen, I'll bring it along with me back to SG in May and you can try it out for yourself

    And it fits a 15" MBP as well
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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    Thanks dude. The hunt is getting a little frustrating with the limited options.

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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    I love the f-stop gear bags. I have the Guru for around town and the Tilopa BC for hiking. Extremely versatile and well thought out.

    --Matt

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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    I agree with Matt regarding the f-stop bags. I use the Tilopa with large ICU for my Alpa/IQ outfit with 4 lenses and all the associated stuff. However, you can easily pack the ICU to hold a MF DSLR body and glass. If you need more space then the Satori & XL ICU will pretty much hold anything you need for MF gear.

    Another bag that worked well for me with my 645DF gear and lenses was the Gura Gear Kobuka bag. Lots of room and the bag handles the shape of MF DSLR bodies and larger glass well.
    Last edited by GrahamWelland; 26th March 2012 at 06:45.
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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    I'll add a +1 for the f-stop bags as well. I use the Tilopa with a Large internal camera unit (ICU) to hold my RZ67 kit. With a smaller insert you could pack quite a bit of non-photo gear along as well.

    Here's a couple pics of my kit in the bag.



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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    Just call Think Tank, tell them what you have and the intended use ...

    -Marc

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    Senior Member mathomas's Avatar
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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    Domke F-2. I have the video to prove it

    Hasselblad Kit in Domke F-2 - YouTube




    .

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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    Thanks all for the input. The f-stop bag looks like a winner especially because I am hiking quite a bit and don't want an additional bag to store clothes.

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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    Quote Originally Posted by Sheldon N View Post
    I'll add a +1 for the f-stop bags as well. I use the Tilopa with a Large internal camera unit (ICU) to hold my RZ67 kit. With a smaller insert you could pack quite a bit of non-photo gear along as well.

    Here's a couple pics of my kit in the bag.



    Sheldon, just want to get your opinion on this. Based on the following setup, which insert should I get? Large or Medium:

    503CXi
    501cm
    50mm cfi
    150mm cf
    2 film backs
    P25 + batteries and charger
    misc filters and film (15 rolls)

    What do you think? Will Loka suffice or a Tilopa?

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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    Quote Originally Posted by bythewei View Post
    Sheldon, just want to get your opinion on this. Based on the following setup, which insert should I get? Large or Medium:

    503CXi
    501cm
    50mm cfi
    150mm cf
    2 film backs
    P25 + batteries and charger
    misc filters and film (15 rolls)

    What do you think? Will Loka suffice or a Tilopa?
    I might lean towards the Loka with that amount of gear. The Tilopa is a full size backpack with lots of room, you might be more comfortable with the smaller profile Loka. Good comparison pics here:

    F-Stop Loka, finally! (bonus: side-by-side Tilopa) - FM Forums

    You might be able to do the medium ICU instead of the large too, check out the photos at f-stop to see what gear you can fit into each size ICU.

    ICU - Pro Series

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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    Beware, though, the Loka was "shipping in 4 weeks" for 6 months. I don't know how long you'd have to wait for one. I ended up with the Tilopa because it was available. I'm not sorry, but it is probably larger than I really needed. The Loka looks perfect for a large, but not debilitating, amount of gear.

    --Matt

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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    Quote Originally Posted by MGrayson View Post
    Beware, though, the Loka was "shipping in 4 weeks" for 6 months. I don't know how long you'd have to wait for one. I ended up with the Tilopa because it was available. I'm not sorry, but it is probably larger than I really needed. The Loka looks perfect for a large, but not debilitating, amount of gear.

    --Matt
    Not sure if it's even available in this side of the planet.

    And then there's the maximum hand-carry size. You reckon the Loka and Tilopa is 'small' enough to hand carry?

    The reason why I'm shopping for a new bag in the first place is because my current bag is too bag to hand-carry and I was forced to empty my camera equipment and literally 'hand-carry' them.

    Not a good experience.

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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    In the US at least the Tilopa is definitely carry-on legal. No problems so far with stowing the bag as the backpack pretty much guarantees that you can't over stuff it.

    However, I typically try to avoid the smaller commuter jets which have pretty small stowage room above. That might be a problem with any of these solutions.

    For my DF kit I tend to now use a Think Tank belt system. I put all the lenses in pouches and the whole lot fits inside a Pelican 1510 that I can carry-on. At the destination I put the pouches on the belt instead of using a bag.
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    Senior Member David Schneider's Avatar
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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    Quote Originally Posted by bythewei View Post
    Let's face it. Bag makers don't really think about us medium format users when designing their bags.

    That said, anybody with a nice bag to recommend for Hasselblad 500 series user who plans to travel overseas for shoots?
    I think bag makers start with space limitations (like airline regulations) and then design bags. They are customizable enough so that they can be used for dslr or mf or whatever.

    Choice of a bag is going to be determined by regulations of the overseas airlines as much as any factor.

    My travel bag is a Think Tank that works on US airlines. I forget the model. It has backpack straps for emergency carrying use and a laptop compartment. I use an f-stop XLL insert inside a free bag from Fuji that holds my most of my dslr and mfd gear for travel by car or to studio. Both companies make good products.

    I have found that if a domestic fight looks like it's full and there's a chance they'll make you check your carry-on as you board, if you approach the airline people ahead of time and ask them if you could board early because you don't want to be in a position to have to be forced to check tens of thousands of dollars worth of camera gear they are reasonably accommodating.

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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    The Tilopa BC is just slightly too large if you stuff it. I had no trouble taking it as a carry-on, but I was careful to tighten the outer straps a bit before I packed it. Basically, the Loka just fits around the pro-depth inserts and the Tilopa has some extra depth for stuffing in clothing. As long as you tighten the straps to eliminate that extra space, the packed back fits as carry-on with no trouble. It is the same length and width as the Loka.

    --Matt

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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    All roads seems to point to either the Loka or Tilopa right now. Hmmm.

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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    I've carried on the Tilopa on US flights before. I even had it loaded to the gills, 1Ds III + 5 or 6 L series lenses, Elinchrom Quadra pack and head and a laptop. Darn thing weighed around 45lbs. I just kept it on my back and acted like it wasn't heavy. I even got it onto a mid sized commuter plane too.

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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    Quote Originally Posted by Sheldon N View Post
    I've carried on the Tilopa on US flights before. I even had it loaded to the gills, 1Ds III + 5 or 6 L series lenses, Elinchrom Quadra pack and head and a laptop. Darn thing weighed around 45lbs. I just kept it on my back and acted like it wasn't heavy. I even got it onto a mid sized commuter plane too.
    And your sweating and shortness of breath has not tipped off the TSA agents?

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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    Quote Originally Posted by Shashin View Post
    And your sweating and shortness of breath has not tipped off the TSA agents?


    I try to stay in shape, so 45lbs is not that heavy.

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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    The Tilopa looks pretty good - am going to see if it can fit a H4D-40, 28, 35, 50, 80, 100, 120, 150 lenses, sensor cleaning kit, blower, ImageBank II with FW800 cable, 3 battery grips for the H4D, two speedlights, speedlight grid/reflectors/flags (Rogue Flashbenders), gel pack, filters (67CPL, 77CPL, 77UV, 77VND, 95CPLUWA, 10-stop ND with Lee holder, 150x170 GNDs)

    It'd be perfect if I could actually skip the speedlights and shoehorn an Einstein and a Vagabond battery pack into it :P
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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    I use a Domke J1 and a TT UD60 shoulder bags, and then a TT airport UL for a back-pack style.
    Jack
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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    I simply put my Hy6 + AFi-II 12 w/80mm in a Kinesis Multi-Lens pouch that I have had for around 9 years. My only other lens a 50mm FLE fits in it too, but then the 3 spare batteries and chargers go in my pockets or wifes hand bag... The Kinesis rides on my shoulder from an Op-Tech flexing shoulder strap. Light weight and easy to carry.

    For times I also carry my 17" MacBook Pro I recent found a Crumpler backpack for 17" notebook and the Kinesis and more fits in it. The Crumpler I found is made plain for carrying a 17"er and more and fits very comfortable.

    Above seem to work as a charm. I nowadays like it light. Less gear makes me focus on image + (also more convenient to carry around...)

    Sure if I need to carry more including my tripod at side, it all goes in my Tenba PBP, which they sadly do not make more... it is plain THE BY FAR BEST camera back pack I have ever come across. Mine has been with me WORLDWIDE the last ten years, including across many many places in ASIA and back and fourth to EUROPE multiple times. Without it I simply would have had to carry less... As a very seasoned traveler, had I found ANYTHING at ANY PRICE better than my PBP in last ten years I would have grabbed it, but NADA. Fortunate I found a PBP long after out of stock at an camera shop in Shanghai some five years back, it is my backup soon to be put into business...

    Best regards,
    Anders

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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    I have a Tenba PBP, and yes, it's HUGE. not sure if it meets international airline carry-on restrictions, but I can fit 7 Hasselblad HC/HCD lenses, a body, HTS, all my filters, cables, external drive, etc and it still has space for more!

    There's some new old stock available on eBay now: NEW OLD STOCK GENUINE ORIGINAL TENBA P225 BACK PACK PHOTO CAMERA L16" H21" D7" | eBay

    USD250
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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    I have 2 Domkes J803 /F803 now retired cant get systems in it. TT UD 60 that I like when I need my laptop. I have a TT smaller Roller for everything. But now down to tech cam either a TT Glass Taxi or a TT retro 10 depending on my mood but now been stolen by my Nikon kit so the 10 really needs to grow into a TT retro 30 for the Nikons. My bags don't like to share at all. Problem is I buy a Retro 30 than I need to buy lens to fill it. Guys rule you must fill your bag with stuff or it is not complete. LOL

    What a damn dangerous rule this is. LOL

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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    I should clarify I can get my Arca tech cam and 4 lenses in the Domke J1 shoulder bag. I use TT UD60 for my DF kit plus the laptop, and use the TT Airport UL for when I need to carry a bunch of stuff backpack style.
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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    Jack - the UD60 fits the DF body? What about lenses? I have a UD50 and it barely fits the H4D
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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    GH,

    In my UD60 I can get my DF with a lens mounted in the center slot. Then in one side slot the 105-210 or fixed 210 or 300/4 will fit. In the other side slot I can get two shorter lenses like the 55LS and 110LS stacked. I was even able to fit the #1 and #2 extension tubes in a wrap with the 105-210, filters in a case fit in with the lenses in the other side slot. Heck, my bulb blower fit in the slot slid down alongside the 105-210. The front pockets hold all the other stuff like batteries, chargers and cards. The UD60 is deeper and wider than the UD50 and why I went with it. Also, I've never had to open up the expansion zipper either.
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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    That's impressive. Right now, my UD50 holds the rain cover on the far left, MBP charger and a travel adapter, and I try to get the H4D with 80 mounted (is it a bad thing to 'stand' a camera on its lens in a bag?), and I can almost get a 120 macro on the right side.

    The front pockets hold my external FW hard disk and a USB card reader.

    Looks like I should take a look at the UD60 or UD70 and see if I can stack them up on an Airstream...
    My images on 500px : http://500px.com/ghoonk
    H4D-40 | Xpan | Leica M9P | Leica M Monochrom | X100 | Hasselblad 500CM | 501CM | 503CXi

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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    This thread needs more pics of bags stuffed with gear

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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    G, you've already seen my bag :P
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    H4D-40 | Xpan | Leica M9P | Leica M Monochrom | X100 | Hasselblad 500CM | 501CM | 503CXi

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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    Quote Originally Posted by ghoonk View Post
    I have a Tenba PBP, and yes, it's HUGE. not sure if it meets international airline carry-on restrictions, but I can fit 7 Hasselblad HC/HCD lenses, a body, HTS, all my filters, cables, external drive, etc and it still has space for more!

    There's some new old stock available on eBay now: NEW OLD STOCK GENUINE ORIGINAL TENBA P225 BACK PACK PHOTO CAMERA L16" H21" D7" | eBay

    USD250
    The old stock looks like the small, PBS (Photo Backpack Small)?? Perhaps the one from the shop in Shanghai that I left there when purchasing my PBP backup (serious) around five years back???

    Dont worry about airline restrictions. As stated I have travelled worldwide with mine with large Gitzo tripod strapped to its side. They always go in overhead bin although depending on bin I need to detach my Gitzo.

    Years ago (~2002) I posted on Nikonians of camera backpacks, while many
    recommended Lowepro and Tamrac, one gentleman recommended the PBP stating he had travelled much with it and it was best piece of camera gear he owned. It is funny, because I can well second that, the PBP is flat the best piece of camera gear I have owned. Comfortable to carry much, and it hold up very well. Mine aint broken yet, althouhgh the rubber on handle split into two pieces... Not that big, about same as a Lowpro pro pack, but better and more comfortable. I have added a Kinesis belt to mine, fits and works as a charm to distribute load.

    Best regards,
    Anders

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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    Quote Originally Posted by Anders_HK View Post
    It is funny, because I can well second that, the PBP is flat the best piece of camera gear I have owned.

    Best regards,
    Anders
    Sounds like I should sell my Nikons and buy the Tenba then. Wonder how it performs at ISO 3200

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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    Quote Originally Posted by Guy Mancuso View Post
    I have 2 Domkes J803 /F803 now retired cant get systems in it. TT UD 60 that I like when I need my laptop. I have a TT smaller Roller for everything. But now down to tech cam either a TT Glass Taxi or a TT retro 10 depending on my mood but now been stolen by my Nikon kit so the 10 really needs to grow into a TT retro 30 for the Nikons. My bags don't like to share at all. Problem is I buy a Retro 30 than I need to buy lens to fill it. Guys rule you must fill your bag with stuff or it is not complete. LOL

    What a damn dangerous rule this is. LOL

    Confessions of a bag whore.
    Better than wives/girlfriends buying MORE bags to store the SAME stuff.

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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    HEAR HEAR!
    My images on 500px : http://500px.com/ghoonk
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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    Thanks everyone for your input on the bag options. In the end, I decided to build my own camera bag by customizing an military haversack. Plenty of room for camera stuff as well as clothes.

    All these for under 40 USD (not including the insert from my other bag).

    Will find a chance to share pictures.

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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    One of Lowepro recent backpacks lets tech cam people carry a ready to shoot system (or a 20x20x20cm cube). In my case it's a Rm3di with RS40 and Aptus II mounted.

    flipside sport 15l

    TT glass taxi was the obvious option till now, but I much prefer the body-sided access / flipside concept thing on this bag.
    Built quality looks ok to me, and the padding is thick enough I don't suffer when hiking with the stuffs for a whole day. However the belt is a joke IMHO, will see if I can fit my TT belt instead.
    Also I can't comment on the tripod system yet, not sure I'll try to attach the TVC33 to this...

    Will make some pics if someone wants to see what it looks like.

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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    Quote Originally Posted by Sheldon N View Post
    I'll add a +1 for the f-stop bags as well. I use the Tilopa with a Large internal camera unit (ICU) to hold my RZ67 kit. With a smaller insert you could pack quite a bit of non-photo gear along as well.

    Here's a couple pics of my kit in the bag.



    This is my current setup for a Leica S and four lenses. I like the flexibility of the internal camera unit. For air travel I put the ICU in a standard Rimowa rolling polycarbonate carry on bag with room for a laptop, cables, chargers, etc. which I organize in mesh bags. The backpack folds flat and is light so it goes in my one piece of checked luggage along with tripod legs and head and clothing etc. In the car the ICU sits on a seat constrained by a seatbelt. Walking it goes into the backpack which has sufficient structure to distribute the weight well.

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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    Sheldon's picture helped me a lot in my purchase decision, so I thought I'd post my own now. Maybe it helps someone else the same way.

    Tilopa BC + X-Large ICU.

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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    Quote Originally Posted by Frederic View Post
    One of Lowepro recent backpacks lets tech cam people carry a ready to shoot system (or a 20x20x20cm cube). In my case it's a Rm3di with RS40 and Aptus II mounted.

    flipside sport 15l

    TT glass taxi was the obvious option till now, but I much prefer the body-sided access / flipside concept thing on this bag.
    Built quality looks ok to me, and the padding is thick enough I don't suffer when hiking with the stuffs for a whole day. However the belt is a joke IMHO, will see if I can fit my TT belt instead.
    Also I can't comment on the tripod system yet, not sure I'll try to attach the TVC33 to this...

    Will make some pics if someone wants to see what it looks like.
    I've been using the new Lowepro Flipside sport for awhile now with a small kit. Cambo, HR40, IQ180. Okay to fit a lens or two more. Bag is really lightweight and good for light hikes. It's nice to go from a 50lb pack (DF system and lenses) down to 15lbs with the tech cam. I never like Lowepro bags because of their weight---horrible. The Flipside Sport changed my mind.

    For more gear or longer excursions, f-stop gear is on my shopping list.....

    ken

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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    Think Tank is my choice. If you don't want to look like a sherpa, try the the "street walker" from TT. I load my Hasselblad H2 w/80mm at the top and film mags, lens and other essentials for an incredibly light, walk around that's also good for hiking.

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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    Thinktank Airport International.

    Fits a H4D, a Nikon D800E and all the lenses you may need for a reasonable shooting trip.

    Bonus: is allowed as cabin luggage AND comes as a trolley.

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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    I prefer actual hiking gear to the photo offerings. I just updated my bag to an Osprey Farpoint 40 internal frame pack. It is airline compatible and the straps and waist belt can be zipped away.



    The suspension system is one of the best I have had on a pack. It also has plenty of space for other "luxuries" like food and a coat, etc. I really hate the padded divider system in photo bags as well as the infinite number of pockets designed for all kinds of small stuff I never carry--they add too much weight and volume to a bag without making it better.

    My lenses are stored in the Tink tank belt system in the bottom of the bag (35mm, 120mm, and 300mm lenses plus an empty pouch for the 55mm on the camera and a pouch for small stuff like batteries and filters). The lens pouches are the padding and I can wear the belt when working. The cameras, a Pentax 645D and RX1, are in the padded insert at the top (I also have a Mountainsmith Tour lumbar pack the same size which I can substitute if I know I am going to a place where I will want a smaller bag and not carry this). There is a small pocket at the top front panel and the panel opens up to carry a bunch of other stuff--I organize in my own bags. Two outside mesh pockets and compression straps are also on the front panel. A should strap can also be attached and it has two carrying handles--one on the top and one on the side.

    For water protection, it is as simple as a rain cover on the outside and a garbage bag on the inside. Unlike many modern back packs which are tear-drop shaped or rounded, this bag is fairly rectangular and so camera gear packs in very well.

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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    Quote Originally Posted by kdphotography View Post
    I've been using the new Lowepro Flipside sport for awhile now with a small kit. Cambo, HR40, IQ180. Okay to fit a lens or two more. Bag is really lightweight and good for light hikes. It's nice to go from a 50lb pack (DF system and lenses) down to 15lbs with the tech cam. I never like Lowepro bags because of their weight---horrible. The Flipside Sport changed my mind.

    For more gear or longer excursions, f-stop gear is on my shopping list.....

    ken
    Hi Ken
    Do u shot your Cambo handheld?
    Thanks
    Phil

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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    Hi Phil,

    I don't shoot handheld with my Cambo. I think if I wanted to shoot handheld with a tech camera, I'd have to get an Alpa TC---not a good proposition for me!

    Right now the Lowepro Flipside Sport 15L works really well. (I note there is now a slightly larger version available too). The MFDB is left attached on the Cambo; I use a Optech lens hood for added protection on the IQ180 (nice tip Graham!). I hand carry a RRS TVC-24 tripod. If longer than a mile, then I'll attach the tripod to the backpack, and use a 1 liter platypus in the pack's water bladder side pocket.

    ken

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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    Quote Originally Posted by kdphotography View Post
    Hi Phil,

    I don't shoot handheld with my Cambo. I think if I wanted to shoot handheld with a tech camera, I'd have to get an Alpa TC---not a good proposition for me!

    Right now the Lowepro Flipside Sport 15L works really well. (I note there is now a slightly larger version available too). The MFDB is left attached on the Cambo; I use a Optech lens hood for added protection on the IQ180 (nice tip Graham!). I hand carry a RRS TVC-24 tripod. If longer than a mile, then I'll attach the tripod to the backpack, and use a 1 liter platypus in the pack's water bladder side pocket.

    ken
    Thanks Ken

    I have found the Cambo hard to hand hold, so now I feel "normal" - I also like the Lowepros - got the flipside - older model - and like the ThinkTanks. Some how don't have enough bags wait I mean I have too many.
    I think you live in a nice part of the country, where hiking is an option. That's really great.
    Best
    Phil

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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    There is a wonderful photo bag from a german manufacture in southern germany near Stuttgart. Water resist up to 1m deep (yes deep) without any rain cover. Custom made insinde for every bag without extra charge. But it is not very cheap. Actual i'am purchasing one for my technical camera + Hasselblad 503CW + XPan.

    Here are more informations:
    Koenig Photobags | König Photorucksack - ein zuverlässiger und flexibler Begleiter für Ihre Fotoexkursionen (only german)

    When i revive i will make a quick review.

    best regards

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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    Do the Flipsides have enough room on their side pockets for something as big as a tech camera (like a Techno - about 8"x 8"x 5" - or more with a DB on it)?

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    Re: Best camera bag for medim format cameras

    Quote Originally Posted by bythewei View Post
    Let's face it. Bag makers don't really think about us medium format users when designing their bags.

    That said, anybody with a nice bag to recommend for Hasselblad 500 series user who plans to travel overseas for shoots?
    My Hasselblad kit is too heavy for me to want to sling the whole thing on back or shoulder. What I use to travel with it is a Pelican 1510 roller case, which is sized to fit in overhead compartments on most airlines. It fits my full Hassy kit - SWC, 500CM + 2 lenses, three backs, filters and other accessories. Very protective and does double duty as a luggage trolley. (I bought the Pelican back when I had my first Hasselblad kit, and am very happy I didn't sell it off.)

    For a shooting bag on walks, I usually carry one camera, and one or two backs, a few rolls of film. I've found the Lowepro Passport Sling works extremely well for this use, and can expand when unzipped to fit a second lens and more stuff when needed.

    (If I'm going far enough and want to have the whole kit with me, I just use the Pelican roller case and save my back and shoulders.)

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