Wonderful hiking bag for camera gear
I recently picked up a Tenba Shootout Backpack 24L camera bag - there is also a smaller 18L, and a larger 32L available. I wanted a bag that was comfortable, weather resistant, durable, and not too big. This Shootout series is relatively new, and there are less than a handful of reviews available online but I decided to take a chance anyway.
I won't list all the features, you can go right to the link and see photos, specs and a video demo. The bag itself feels great. The straps are well cushioned and the lycra material is silky smooth. You can easily tighten the top part of the straps to help transfer weight higher up on the shoulder. I am 6' 1", so the lumbar strap is kind of useless as it wraps around my abdomen, not the lower back - so keep that in mind. It is very comfortable even fully loaded. There is plenty cushion support for the back.
Internally it is all customizable. Camera gear is well protected. I have a Panasonic GH4 which I usually carry on a Capture Clip, but the side-access pocket in the bag is perfect for storing lenses and for making a quick lens change. I comfortably fit a Voigtlander + 100-300mm + smaller 9-18mm lens with cushioning in that little custom-made compartment.
A Gorillapod Focus tripod slides right into the long side pocket (one tripod leg goes in, the others hang out) meant for a microphone or monopod. The pocket does not have enough give to it for this tripod to fit in completely without it being too tight. The included tripod adapter works well but can be a little clumsy to use.
The built in rain cover is cute, but unless there is a torrential downpour it is probably not necessary. The bag itself is water repellant, just be careful where the zippers are so there aren't any leaks. One negative is that if you're out and about somewhere and want to put the bag down to access the main compartment, you will have to lay it with straps on the ground, which can get them dirty. The laptop compartment interferes with opening the main part if you lay down the bag the other way. Tenba suggests using the raincoat as a makeshift blanket, but it is not such a quick ordeal to unravel that piece from the zippered pocket it is stored in. Good news is that the base of the bag is large and firm so it is usually easy to just sit the bag straight up and access your stuff that way.
Overall the quality and workmanship seem to be outstanding. There is plenty of room in the bag for all sorts of stuff + extras. The smaller 18L is probably too small for a six footer, but could be perfect for a shorter frame. The larger 32L is heavy duty, and likely perfect for a bigger person and/ or for carrying lots of equipment. I highly recommend.
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