Best camera backpack with these criteria?

Started May 6, 2013 | Discussions thread
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dpyy Contributing Member • Posts: 905
Best camera backpack with these criteria?

I've recently bought a $300+ messenger bag for my gear from and although I absolutely love the bag, it basically destroyed my shoulder. I don't think it's the bag's fault. It's just I don't have strong shoulders. After a full day of use, my shoulders are sore and red. I carried with me a Sony FF camera with 24-70mm, 135mm and a 100mm macro (and other light items - batteries, SD cards, iPad mini etc). No flash or tripod.

So my next thought is to try a backpack. I put all the same gear into a backpack I have (not specific to camera use) and to my surprise it felt so light, and no pain at all.

So now I think the better way to go is to use a backpack. What is a backpack out there that meets all these criteria?

  • At a minimum fit a full frame camera, 3 lenses and misc small items
  • Preferably can attach a tripod, and include 1 flash
  • Has quick access to the camera (the reason I went with a messenger first is I like slinging it to the front quickly and draw out a camera)
  • Has great ergonomics for long day walking (I've read that backpack design is not trivial and weight balancing is critical) I don't have a strong shoulder/back so every little bit helps
  • Comfortable shoulder straps/material (again I weight comfort heavily over other features)
  • My personal taste is to have the appearance look as discreet as possible and non camera bag looking (love the onabags designs for example)
  • Weather sealing a bonus
  • Anything assisting lens-changing a bonus
  • Flexible with any price

I've done some research already and am aware of some potential with the big brands out there (Think Tank has a rotational bag, and Lowepro have some simple fastpacks) but I'm really looking for something that is well designed ergonomically-speaking with a designed look (doesn't shout "camera gear").

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