Travel Backpack and Other Suggested Gear

Started 6 months ago | Discussions
lewiedude2
lewiedude2 Regular Member • Posts: 285
Travel Backpack and Other Suggested Gear

Hello all! This thread is only meant for advice and suggestions regarding the below specific questions that I have, so please treat the thread nicely and don't polarize anyone's suggestion of advice. There are so many choices out there for almost all of the stuff I am asking about, and really want to rely on the great minds in this forum as all of you, or almost all of you, have already made the great decision to go with Fuji's X system!! Thank you in advance!

I am lucky enough to take a trip in a few months overseas, with kids, and would like to pick your noggins about the proper "packing gear" and gear to travel with/bring along. My kit is going to include my X-T2 with battery grip, 16-55 and 18-55 lenses. As I have been posting lately, the 18-55 is staying coming along for video purposes. I also have a mini manfrotto table tripod from my film days and will be using my RRS bottom plate (didn't get the vertical portion to complete an "L"). My current strapping and bag system consists of the Peak Design cuff, Sling (not the sling lite) and a small manfrotto shoulder bag that fits the camera and battery grip (while not attached) and either lens, but not both lenses in this little bag. I came from film to digital with my X-T2 purchase, so don't know the ins and outs of some of the situations I am going to put myself in (landscape, night, street, portrait and long exposure photography). I have been investigating both/either UV and Polarizing filters for my new 16-55 lens and have polarizing and protection filters for my 18-55 lens...I just haven't pulled the trigger yet for any filters for my 16-55.

Here are my questions/sought after recommendations and they cover the above equipment:

1) Travel Backpack that will fit my camera kit and afford me the ability to store additional harddrives (2) and my surface pro ALONG with stuff that I will need to carry for my kids (not much but some food and water). And and additional bag/pack that will fit my two lenses and the X-T2 with battery grip.

2) Light yet inexpensive tripod (either carbon fiber or aluminum) that would hopefully allow for a conversion into a mono-pod.

3) Well designed pouches that will individually fit my 16-55 and also my 18-55.

4) Camera pouch for my X-T2 PLUS the 16-55 with and then without the battery grip. My current camera pouches are neoprene and only fit the X-T2 and my 18-55 with and without the battery grip.

5) I got both circular polarizing and clear B+W filters for my 18-55 lens a while ago, when I made my initial purchase BUT haven't gotten any filters for my 16-55 lens. I did get a clear protection B+W filter for it though. I have read the lensrentals.com blog posting about those filters, hence the protection filter. Also, I kind of want to stick with B+W filters.

- Do I really need a UV or polarizing filter for a lens?

- Should I get a neutral density filter? I was thinking about the graduated ND filter B+W has as I used to take 15-30 second night shots with my medium format camera and will do so with my X-T2 in the future, maybe not in this trip.

6) Do I need a corded mic for some video that I will be taking of one of my children making a presentation? I will be fairly close to her during the presentation and want to make sure I get a sound quality that won't be inferior (i.e. like I am standing 10 feet away and using the built-in camera mic).

That's all for now, thank you for reading this post, and thank you, thank you, thank you for any thoughts, advice and recommendations. And, please answer one, all or none of the above. Cheers! Lewie.

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Fujifilm X-T2
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Matt Fulghum
Matt Fulghum Contributing Member • Posts: 785
Re: Travel Backpack and Other Suggested Gear

RE the tripod, have a look at the MePhoto Roadtrip.  Available Al and CF, and rigid enough for me to use it with my tracker to do astrophotography.

when traveling with my son, I use one of my regular packs with a crumpler haven to hold my photo gear.  Not a perfect solution, but better than anything else I’ve tried.

Esmond_B Regular Member • Posts: 109
Re: Travel Backpack and Other Suggested Gear

For a backpack I use one of these - Abonnyc backpack - easily contains tablet, 100-400 plus a couple of other lenses, minipod and flash internally, plus large tripod on the outside. Very roomy and well-padded. Very good stitching and quality zips.

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Esmond

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AaronX Regular Member • Posts: 176
Re: Travel Backpack and Other Suggested Gear

Bag suggestions:

https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/1056302-REG/manfrotto_mb_ma_bp_trv_advanced_travel_backpack.html?sts=pi

https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/1277312-REG/thule_3203410_aspect_dslr_backpack.html?sts=pi

https://www.tenba.com/products/shootout-backpack-18l.aspx#Overview

No need for UV. Polarizing filter is useful for cutting down water reflections. It's best to get one that fits your largest lens and use step up rings for the smaller lenses. ND filter is useful for long exposure shots (blurring water or cloud movements). Get one with 6 stops or 10 stops. (You probably don't need it for the night shots, as the light is already low.) Whether to get these really depends on your shooting style and need.

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bs1946
bs1946 Senior Member • Posts: 5,572
Re: Travel Backpack and Other Suggested Gear

lewiedude2 wrote:

1) Travel Backpack that will fit my camera kit and afford me the ability to store additional harddrives (2) and my surface pro ALONG with stuff that I will need to carry for my kids (not much but some food and water). And and additional bag/pack that will fit my two lenses and the X-T2 with battery grip.

I have a Think Tank Airport Essentials. It is well made, easy to get on and off, highly configureable, and comfortable to wear while racing through airports etc. The Airport Essentials is the smallest in their Airport series, meets all of the carry-on requirements, and fits under the seats or in overheads. You can also take one personal bag around the size of a purse. I would recommend taking a look at the ONA Bowery. You really need to check all of the bag requirements for the airlines you will be using. They vary between airlines.

2) Light yet inexpensive tripod (either carbon fiber or aluminum) that would hopefully allow for a conversion into a mono-pod.

Giottos, Benro, MeFoto, and Sirui all make lightweight travel tripods that come with Barca-swiss compatible bullheads and monopod conversion options. I have no idea what inexpensive is to you but aluminum will be in the $150 range unless you catch a sale. Carbon Fiber is double that and in travel tripods, the weight difference between aluminum and carbon fiber is minimal.

3) Well designed pouches that will individually fit my 16-55 and also my 18-55.

4) Camera pouch for my X-T2 PLUS the 16-55 with and then without the battery grip. My current camera pouches are neoprene and only fit the X-T2 and my 18-55 with and without the battery grip.

If you get a small camera bag to use with you X-T2 kit, not sure why you want extra pouches.

5) I got both circular polarizing and clear B+W filters for my 18-55 lens a while ago, when I made my initial purchase BUT haven't gotten any filters for my 16-55 lens. I did get a clear protection B+W filter for it though. I have read the lensrentals.com blog posting about those filters, hence the protection filter. Also, I kind of want to stick with B+W filters.

- Do I really need a UV or polarizing filter for a lens?

I put a B+W 010 UV Haze filter on every lens I have for protection. I also don't use hoods. If you don't believe the filters are worth getting to protect the front of your lens, you don't need them for the UV protection. The UV and the clear filters do the same thing on digital camera lenses and the charge more for the clear, so get the UV for protection.

- Should I get a neutral density filter? I was thinking about the graduated ND filter B+W has as I used to take 15-30 second night shots with my medium format camera and will do so with my X-T2 in the future, maybe not in this trip.

Most landscape shooters use CPLs and NDs for landscape work. If you're not planning on shooting any landscapes, you probably won't use either. I have a 67mm CPL and 67mm variable ND because that was my largest lens at the time. I use step-up rings to use them with my smaller filters. Get filters that fit your largest lens and then use step-up filters. Variable NDs are expensive an generate almost as many problems as they solve, The two most used solid ND filters are the 3-stop and 6-stop.

6) Do I need a corded mic for some video that I will be taking of one of my children making a presentation? I will be fairly close to her during the presentation and want to make sure I get a sound quality that won't be inferior (i.e. like I am standing 10 feet away and using the built-in camera mic).

Don't do video.

That's all for now, thank you for reading this post, and thank you, thank you, thank you for any thoughts, advice and recommendations. And, please answer one, all or none of the above. Cheers! Lewie.

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Bill S.
www.flickr.com/photos/wrs1946
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“Sharpness is a bourgeois concept”
- Henri Cartier-Bresson -

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Sjak
Sjak Senior Member • Posts: 2,102
Re: Travel Backpack and Other Suggested Gear

I would advise against packing food and drinks in the same bag as your valuable electronics. Accidents can and do happen, especially while travelling.

Re. needing any filters (ND, polarizer etc): I would say no, you dont need them, it's not air or water. However, you may wish to use them Ask yourself how often you use them at home. Abroad you will probably use them as often. (if you dont have them, during travel is not the best opportunity to learn to work with new toys)

I do use a protective- or UV-filter on all my lenses that cost me more than the price of a filter. A filter is easier to replace than a front element, in case of any mishap 

Although I don't own the X-T2, I have the X-T1 which is of similar size. Consider another grip instead of the battery-grip, that will make the camera much much more compact and more comfortable to handle, especially during packing/unpacking. When travelling, I leave the battery grip home. (with other grips, do check whether they allow access to the battery compartment, some cheap no-brands do not)

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lewiedude2
OP lewiedude2 Regular Member • Posts: 285
Re: Travel Backpack and Other Suggested Gear

All great suggestions. The lens pouches was a thought as it would provide better protection when doing the actual traveling/in the backpack? I understand your point of no necessity for the pouches whilst walking around with the backpack. I had already been thinking of the Crumpler as a solution of some sort.

As for the suggestions on the ND and the UV filters, since I have the B+W clear filter, no need to add UV which is what I was thinking based on my recent research. I will work with ND at one point in the future, and maybe on this trip - I guess I will figure that out for myself. The answer regarding the ND filter specs is very helpful to me.

My X-T2's ergonomics are perfect for my hand size, and the RRS bottom plate that I have makes it even better. Gripping it isn't an issue and the battery grip is a must for me on this trip. Once in a lifetime trip will command plenty of battery power every day.

The backpack suggestions are greatly appreciated (keep them coming) and I am now looking at all that have been suggested. The main question then becomes, is a $200 backpack worth the added expense over a $90 backpack. I get it that you get what you pay for, generally speaking.

Tripod cost of $150+/- is the budget and I will check out the brands/models. And yes, I was beginning to notice that CF and AL really aren't too much of a weight difference and usually make for a pricing difference.

Cheers and any other suggestions are greatly appreciated! Thank you all!

 lewiedude2's gear list:lewiedude2's gear list
Fujifilm X-T2 Fujifilm 16-55mm F2.8R LM WR
jptsr1
jptsr1 Regular Member • Posts: 151
Re: Travel Backpack and Other Suggested Gear
1

My suggestion for a travel backpack (or what I do at least) is use one of the Teneba BYOB inserts and put it in the bag of my choice. I use the 10 in backpacks and the 13 in messenger bags. Then I can pick what bag I want based on other requirements.

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JDC1958 Contributing Member • Posts: 867
Re: Travel Backpack and Other Suggested Gear

jptsr1 wrote:

My suggestion for a travel backpack (or what I do at least) is use one of the Teneba BYOB inserts and put it in the bag of my choice. I use the 10 in backpacks and the 13 in messenger bags. Then I can pick what bag I want based on other requirements.

I am interested in getting a day pack that will hold my 17" laptop and camera setup. The 10 insert could also work with my larger pack. Great idea.

I will be checking some sites I have bookmarked on Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Tenaba is now bookmarked.

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Sjak
Sjak Senior Member • Posts: 2,102
Re: Travel Backpack and Other Suggested Gear

I also use the BYOB-10, but it does not comfortably hold my X-T1 with battery grip installed. Otherwise it is ideal, as I can use if for my carry-on-backpack, or in a small messenger back for my daily walk. There's the BYOB 13 that is a crucial few cm wider.

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Ricoh Caplio GX100 Sigma DP2 Sony Cyber-shot DSC-F717 Leica X1 Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX7 +5 more
deednets Veteran Member • Posts: 7,890
Where are you going??

Maybe I missed this but where exactly are you going and what means of transport will you have?

Could write something utterly useless now as imo the travel gear depends greatly on where you will go. So is it Vancouver or Tibet??

Deed

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Fujifilm X-Pro2 Fujifilm X-T20 Fujifilm XF 14mm F2.8 R Fujifilm XF 56mm F1.2 R Fujifilm XF 16mm F1.4 R WR +3 more
dv312
dv312 Veteran Member • Posts: 7,286
Re: Travel Backpack and Other Suggested Gear

For 2 weeks in Vietnam I carried this Lowepro Flipside 15L AW

https://store.lowepro.com/ca/shop/action-sports/flipside-sport-15l-aw-ca

The mini travel tripod stayed attached on the outside

On the other side, I tuck my mini pod + 5 batteries

On the inside I had the XT2, 18-55, 55-200, 14, and 100-400 + 5 filters + charger

The bag has a waterproof cover which shielded the inside during the rainy days I experienced

It should fit your needs easily

However, Lowepro may have replaced it with a newer model line like the Pro Tactic

 dv312's gear list:dv312's gear list
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jptsr1
jptsr1 Regular Member • Posts: 151
Re: Travel Backpack and Other Suggested Gear

Sjak wrote:

I also use the BYOB-10, but it does not comfortably hold my X-T1 with battery grip installed. Otherwise it is ideal, as I can use if for my carry-on-backpack, or in a small messenger back for my daily walk. There's the BYOB 13 that is a crucial few cm wider.

Really? The X-T1 is bigger than I thought then. I use my BYOB10 for my 6D with 24-70 attached. Also fit my 70-200 and flash in there. I've handled the X-T2 and it would definitely fit but I didn't factor in for how much the grip probably adds. I have a BYOB13 as well but it isn't much wider, just 3 inches or so longer. Also doesn't fit in a standard backpack like the BYOB10 does. Unless you turn it long ways which kind of defeats the purpose.

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hashsomeKnoppers New Member • Posts: 10
Re: Travel Backpack and Other Suggested Gear

Hi,

i ordered this one:

https://www.boundarysupply.com/

Did not receive it yet.

Regards Christoph

JDC1958 Contributing Member • Posts: 867
Re: Travel Backpack and Other Suggested Gear

hashsomeKnoppers wrote:

Hi,

i ordered this one:

https://www.boundarysupply.com/

Did not receive it yet.

Regards Christoph

Great looking bag and setup but I am trying to get a daypack setup for about 1/2 that price. 199.00 is a little steep but maybe they cut 25% or more off on Black Friday/Cyber Monday.

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lewiedude2
OP lewiedude2 Regular Member • Posts: 285
Re: Where are you going??

Headed to the Mediterranean and taking a sightseeing trips along the east coast. Mostly inland with very little time spent on sand. Hotel to hotel with tour guide bus travel. Nothing campy or too outdoorsy at all.

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Fujifilm X-T2 Fujifilm 16-55mm F2.8R LM WR
JDC1958 Contributing Member • Posts: 867
Re: Travel Backpack and Other Suggested Gear

jptsr1 wrote:

Sjak wrote:

I also use the BYOB-10, but it does not comfortably hold my X-T1 with battery grip installed. Otherwise it is ideal, as I can use if for my carry-on-backpack, or in a small messenger back for my daily walk. There's the BYOB 13 that is a crucial few cm wider.

Really? The X-T1 is bigger than I thought then. I use my BYOB10 for my 6D with 24-70 attached. Also fit my 70-200 and flash in there. I've handled the X-T2 and it would definitely fit but I didn't factor in for how much the grip probably adds. I have a BYOB13 as well but it isn't much wider, just 3 inches or so longer. Also doesn't fit in a standard backpack like the BYOB10 does. Unless you turn it long ways which kind of defeats the purpose.

I do use the battery grip on my K1 and it is 5.4" wide by 6.75" high with grip and quick release plate. About 6.5" high with battery grip on and quick release removed. The 10 will not work for me. Its going to be hard to find a day pack that is 13" wide also, so the 13 may not work either,

The day pack I have my eye on is 11.75 inches wide. I will have to rethink this.

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Greg7579
Greg7579 Senior Member • Posts: 3,462
Re: Travel Backpack and Other Suggested Gear
3

I have views on all of these questions and will see how long I feel like typing.  I'm a travel photographer and am constantly fretting over how best to pack, what gear to take and what bags / packs to bring.

If I'm in the car there is no issue.  I load the car with all my gear and go.  the only concern then is what bag or pack do I switch to when I leave the car.  I usually take 4 bags if it is a car trip so I have some options.

But if I am flying, it is a different story.  If I'm flying and then getting a rental car, I just have to get the equipment to the car and unload in that car. If I'm flying and not getting a car but just staying in a city or taking trains (like in Europe sometimes), I have to stay packed and lighter.

If I'm hiking when I get there, I take a day-hiking Osprey Mantah AG 28 backpack with a water pack in the back -- not a camera backpack.  I travel on the plane with that on my back loaded with camera gear.  I stuff the Domke F803 shoulder bag inside the Osprey pack and several lenses in soft pouches.  The lens pouches are Apeman.  There are many brands and they are all similar.  I like the soft pouches, not the hard cases.  However, I do have some hard lens cases that I sometimes use if I want to stick a lens or two in my checked suitcase.  I do that sometimes and have not had a bad experience yet, but that is a risk with lost and damaged suitcases.

I almost always hand carry the Peak Design Everyday Messenger bag onto the plane.  Inside is the Surface Pro (or any 13 inch hybrid or 2--in-1 laptop), some lenses and the actual camera.

So, I walk on the plane with the Osprey hiking pack on my back with the Domke F803 stuffed inside and the Peak Design Everyday messenger as a briefcase-like hand carry.  I usually take about 8 or 9 lenses with me.  Sometimes 6 or 7.  I have done this methodology many times and had good luck.  This gives me one day-hiking backpack, a big camera bag to carry large loads or a small camera shoulder bag for day use.

This involves some risk because the danger is that they try to gate-check the backpack, which would be a disaster.  That hasn't happened yet.  If it did, I would pull the Domke bag out of the backpack and hand them the pack with no lenses in it.

I also check a suitcase which has the RRS travel tripod in it.  That is risky because that tripod and head is 1200 bucks.  But no one has stolen it yet.

The bottom line is a I do not like camera backpacks.  I have some, and tried it, but I don't like them.  They are heavily padded and my pack has to be the day-hiking sort.  I don't need all of those compartments and padding.  I am very happy just putting my Fuji lenses in the soft lens pouches and stuffing them in one of my three bags -- messenger, shoulder or day backpack.

Then when I get there, I am equipped for hiking or city walking.

Filters?  I have CP filters for these primes -- 16, 23, 35, 50 and 90.  I almost always have them screwed on when outdoors  and always on hikes.  I lose a stop or two, which sucks, but I consider CP filters essential.  I also have ND filters for the 16 and 23/35/50 F2s.  I carry the filters in two folding pouches and those are always in the pack or bag and with me.

I carry at least 6 lenses on hikes.  They are in the sift pouches loose in the backpack.  Or if I'm city-walking, I have 5 lenses in my Domke F803 and ther Fuji XT-2 around my neck.  I always have 3 spare batteries with me and lens cloths.

I also am determined now to have the RRS tripod with me.  It straps on the Osprey backpack very easily and weighs only 3 pounds.  But walking around the city I sometimes need it too, and it does not strap on the Domke shoulder bag, so that is a pain.  No easy way to lug that great travel tripod around without a backpack, and I don't like backpacks in the city.  So sometimes on short walks I just have the tripod in my hand.  I'm still messing around with that.  I have decided to carry the tripod more because the Fuji primes I love don't have OIS, and I often find myself wishing I had a tripod with me.  I think the RRS travel tripod has a sling I can order.....

Hey -- this is all personal choice.  Shoulder bags, messenger bags, sling-bags and backpacks.... It never stops.  I have owned so many and am always seeking a better solution.  I have a closet full of all these types of bags....

Good luck

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Matt Fulghum
Matt Fulghum Contributing Member • Posts: 785
Re: Travel Backpack and Other Suggested Gear

what body and how many lenses do you want to carry? How much other stuff do you want to put in it?

My current day-bag is a Kelty Ruckus - https://www.rei.com/rei-garage/product/123181/kelty-ruckus-panel-load-pack-28-liters

I've been happy enough with the Kelty; it's not as nice as some of my other bags, but it's a great size for a day-pack, and it was inexpensive.  It also doesn't scream "Steal me, I'm full of expensive camera gear."

I use a large Crumpler Haven insert to hold a camera body and a couple of extra lenses, but pretty much any of the inserts would work fine.  I've used it with a couple of Nikon bodies, and now an X-T20.

lewiedude2
OP lewiedude2 Regular Member • Posts: 285
Re: Travel Backpack and Other Suggested Gear

X-T2, two lenses and the battery grip. One lens, the 16-55 will be on the camera most of the time.

I saw the Kelty brand at the local sporting goods store. Seems sturdy enough, but am leaning toward something I can customize somewhat inside for compartmentalization.

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Fujifilm X-T2 Fujifilm 16-55mm F2.8R LM WR
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