8 months with the Vanguard Up-Rise 33 camera bag
Vanguard Up-Rise 33
$170 / £85 www.vanguardworld.com
Not really expecting much, I walked into the camera store knowing I needed a different way to carry both cameras and computers. I’d been living in a semi-rural area, carrying both computer and cameras in a large backpack that could accommodate several large SLRs. Now I’d need a smaller bag, as my commute would include long walks and even longer rides on public transit.
Set on a satchel-style bag, I checked out the usual suspects, including Tenba, Lowepro, and ThinkTank, and all seemed reasonable choices. Then I came upon an unusual bag with a style all its own: The Vanguard Up-Rise 33. It was made with black nylon fabric with orange accents, and had a design I hadn’t seen before, including the ability to expand and contract depending on the size of its contents. After verifying with the clerk that it could carry a 13-inch MacBook Pro, I made my purchase. Though I still use other bags depending on what I’m testing, I usually carry the Up-Rise 33, so I haven’t regretted the purchase at all. Let me tell you a little bit more about this well-made bag.
|A smart look and tight build make the Vanguard Up-Rise 33 a pretty good commuter companion.|
- Expandable design
- Good weight distribution
- Top zipper for quick access
- Secure latch mechanism
- Good mix of large and small pockets
- Holds 13-inch laptop
- Removable inner sleeve
- Sleeve for rolling luggage
- Inside Dimensions: 13 x 4.1 x 11 inches (330 x 105 x 280mm)
- Outside Dimensions: 15.3 x 8.8 x 14.2 inches (390 x 225 x 360mm)
- 3.4 pounds (1.54Kg)
I always carry a camera, but don’t always need my MacBook, so the ability to collapse the bag by as much as an inch and a half in thickness comes in handy when walking or riding on public transit. Less thickness means greater maneuverability. I can fit a medium SLR and two or three lenses in the Up-Rise 33, or two lenses and a flash. Switching to small mirrorless designs allows up to three cameras with two lenses each if I stack them right.
While I’m mostly indifferent about the strap itself, I do admire the way Vanguard designed the strap-to-bag interface: It’s a single strap that connects to the bag in two places, left and right of the expansion joint. Not only does it allow the bag to expand in the middle, it distributes the weight evenly, whether the bag is expanded or contracted. That gives the bag a greater feel of stability overall. Another benefit of this loop is I can reach back and grab hold of it when I’m transitioning from rear carry (where it rests as I walk) to side carry (where I can access the contents of the bag, or else sit down with it). As for the strap, it includes a good shoulder pad, but it's tough to adjust, and doesn't absorb the bounce as well as some of my Think Tank and Lowepro bags do.
|The unique lashing system allows the bag to expand in the middle, and distributes the weight evenly as well.||Bringing the bag forward from the back is as easy as grabbing this divided lashing point and swinging the bag around.|
I mostly use the top flap to get cameras and other items in and out of the Up-Rise 33, but when I'm moving and shooting I like the top zipper, as it keeps the flap out of the way and allows me to easily return the camera to the bag between shots.
Opening up the main flap offers full access to most of the Up-Rise 33's storage areas. Storage is comprised of both large open spaces, large pockets, and a few tight pockets for slimmer items. It's a good mix.
Removable sleeve and other details
The Up-Rise 33 includes a rain cover in a little pouch. In mine, it wasn't attached to a key hook, but others have reported a key hook in their bags. I put it on once then set it aside, as it seemed more trouble than it was worth. Walking in persistent rain, water has not penetrated the bag, but a solid downpour might be a different story. Too much rain generally makes me walk faster or seek shelter, so I'll likely get out of the rain before it's a problem.
While the Up-Rise 33 is surprisingly good for commuters and travelers, there are a few things missing. A dedicated business card pocket would be helpful, as would a few more pockets to help organize the wide, slim pocket. The soft side of the velcro that holds one side of the flap down wore out after about five months, while the other side still works fine. I could also use a water bottle or thermos holder when commuting or walking around at an event, but I have to sacrifice space inside the bag instead. The expansion feature makes adding a bottle holder more difficult, though, so it's a necessary compromise.
Vanguard makes two other shoulder bags in this series, a smaller one for 11-inch notebooks and a larger for 15-inch, called Up-Rise 28 and 38, respectively. There's also an Up-Rise II series with a few different features, and compatibility with their rather comprehensive ICS line of suspension and lens bags.
The Vanguard Up-Rise 33 is a very good camera bag that's excellent for holding a small to mid-size DSLR with a 70-200mm lens (with the lens hood stowed), two or three more lenses and accessories, a notebook computer, and other elements a commuter is likely to need. It makes a good camera bag for travel as well, packing a lot of stuff into a small space that easily slides under a seat. Depending on your needs it also shrinks down to serve as a good walk-around camera bag for family outings, when you might not want to bring the notebook, but want to tote a flash and an extra lens or two.
What we like: Quality fabrics, smart design, useful and innovative expansion system, easy customization, fast access, and it holds a lot in a neat and clean package.
What we don't like: Tends to bounce a bit if not positioned properly, velcro is weaker than it should be, lacks water bottle holder.
|Normally Amsterdam by Rudolph Arnstein|
from Your City - Biking
|laboratory glass by bombelpl|
|57 BelAir Chevorlet by TexasGal|
from Car Shows 2018
Yuneec has introduced the Mantis Q, a consumer drone with an integrated 4K camera, electronic image stabilization and voice control.
The new 3 Legged Thing Patti is a compact tripod that doesn't break the bank.
Alex and Kathryn are photographers, friends and Tokyo residents who love exploring Japan's hidden cultural treasures. They each brought a Canon EOS M50 on a recent trip starting in bustling Tokyo and ending in the peaceful riverside town of Gujo Hachiman.
The triple-camera in Samsung's 2019 Galaxy S10 smartphone is expected to use three sensors with varying pixel counts.
Net SE, the parent company behind the likes of Oprema Jena, Meyer Optik Görlitz, Emil Busch, C.P. Goerz, Ihagee and A. Schacht products has filed for bankruptcy and removed itself from the German stock exchange.
Canon's latest 70-200mm F4L comes with a five stops of image stabilization, a new coat of paint and impressive sharpness. We've been shooting with our copy for several weeks now - see how it stacks up in our sample gallery.
Special 4K and 6K Photo modes may be one of the most under-appreciated features on recent cameras. In this week's episode, Chris and Jordan take a closer look at these modes and explain why – and when – you'll be glad to have them on your camera.
Ten years ago this month Panasonic and Olympus announced a new concept called Micro Four Thirds. We're now on the brink of full-frame mirrorless from at least one major player, so perhaps it's a good time to take a look back at where it all started – and how far we've come.
Ted Forbes of The Art of Photography breaks down five 'hacks' for organizing your camera equipment.
The City of Redding has published a series of aerial images showing the devastation caused by the ongoing Carr Fire in Shasta County, California.
Sigma full-frame Art lenses are finally available in Sony E-mount. Here's how the 85mm F1.4 Art looks on an a7R III and a7 III.
Sigma is now shipping the FE versions of its 14mm F1.8 DG HSM, 70mm F2.8 DG MACRO, and 135mm F1.8 DG HSM Art lenses that were announced in February.
We got some quick hands-on time with Samsung's newest, biggest Galaxy smartphone at the company's launch event. Here are the most noteworthy camera features we uncovered.
Leica has released the Elpro 52, a close-up lens adapter that works 3with more than 20 Leica M and TL lenses.
Nikon has released yet another teaser video for its full-frame mirrorless camera set to be announced August 23rd.
At a high-profile launch event in New York, Samsung took the wraps off its next Note device. The Galaxy Note 9 borrows the S9+'s 12MP dual-aperture dual-cam, with OIS in both cameras and an emphasis on AI-enhanced shooting modes.
One of the most keenly-awaited lenses for a while, the new Pentax D FA* 50mm F1.4 is finally here, and we've been using it for a few days. In this article, we're updating our initial impressions on the basis of our recent shooting with the K-1 II.
AirSelfie2 boasts longer flight times, a higher resolution camera and more built-in memory than its predecessor.
In 2016, Samsung launched a prohibitively expensive 4TB SSD. This week it revealed that it has started mass producing a less expensive variant.
At max speed, the Epson FastFoto FF-680W can scan a photo every second at 300dpi.
Lighting manufacturer Cactus has officially launched its RQ250 bare bulb wireless TTL flash unit on the Kickstarter crowd funding website, and says it will be ready for delivery in October.
Lensbaby's Sol 45 fixed-aperture selective focus lens is aimed squarely at photographers new to the manual, in-camera creative effects possible with Lensbaby's lineup. We took it out for a spin.
Android 9, also known as 'Pie,' will add support for the HEIF image format and will allow third-party app developers to access multiple camera streams simultaneously.
DJI has partnered with messaging app Line to launch a special-edition version of its Spark drone that's made to look like an adorable little character affectionately referred to as Brown the bear.
We all know what ISO means, or do we? The truth is that ISO probably doesn’t mean what you think it does, and it might be holding you back from getting the most out of your camera.
Tamron has introduced the 17-35mm F2.8-4 Di OSD zoom lens for full-frame Canon and Nikon bodies. This compact lens is weather-sealed, features a minimum focus distance of 28cm (11") and uses an 'Optimized Silent Drive' AF motor.
This week we take a look at one of the most unusual optics we've seen for quite a while. The Laowa 24mm F14 Macro Probe lens may look like something out of a science fiction movie, but as Chris and Jordan discover, it opens the door to some pretty cool photo opportunities.
Wildlife and landscape photographer Erez Marom has been to Namibia several times, but nothing could prepare him for the conditions he witnessed on his most recent visit.
Like most printers of this type, the Zoemini uses ZINK printing technology, where the ink is stored in water- and tear-resistant 2” x 3” photo paper.
A 5G module for the Z3 will be available next year, allowing you to send and receive data at next-generation speeds.