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The Everyday Sling might just be the perfect pack for not carrying too much gear, combining comfort with Peak Design's signature modern style.
Finding a backpack that doesn't scream "I'm a camera bag," but can still hold all of my gear while not killing my back has long been a struggle for me. I'm 5'3" and most backpacks that can hold a lot of equipment are impossible for me to carry for any extended period of time. Living in a city, typically when I head out for an assignment close to home I’ll opt to bring less gear so that it will fit into a smaller, understated backpack. But for assignments that require more gear or travel, a smaller bag just won't cut it.
The design looks different than your typical padded camera backpack
That's why I was immediately intrigued by the Hex Raven DSLR bag – although I had never heard of the company before – as the design looks different than your typical padded camera backpack. The Hex’s square shape and matte black material were particularly appealing to me. It also looked like it could hold a ton of equipment – a very good thing considering I’d be spending a week in Austin, Texas covering SXSW and a short time later a week on the road touring with a band from Brooklyn. I knew that my typical one body, two lens, one speedlight setup just wasn’t going to cut it for these two jobs.
The Hex Raven DSLR bag's exterior is made of matte black tarpaulin with waterproof zippers. The straps are thick, air-mesh padded. The front of the bag has two compartments. The top one is accessed by undoing the buckles. Beneath the flap is a zippered compartment that is fleece-lined and can hold up to a 17" laptop as well as a small tablet. This section of the Hex is easily accessed, making it convenient to remove these larger items in the rush to get through airport security.
Top front storage
Undoing the bag's buckles reveals a zippered compartment that offers a fleece-lined laptop sleeve and separate space for a tablet.
Lower front storage
There are two lower zippered pockets. The main space offers room to organize and store items you might want quick access to.
There are two zippered areas on the lower front of the bag, which are great for stashing keys, pens, notebooks, spare batteries or memory cards.
On the right side of the bag you’ll find two more small flat zippered pockets, which are fairly easy to access when the thing is on your back – they're great for holding any odds and ends that you might need such as chapstick, business cards, a small wallet or your phone. On the opposite side of the bag there are straps to attach a tripod.
|You can attach a tripod to the side of the backpack using the two straps.||The opposite side has two very small zippered pockets.|
Camera equipment is accessed through the bag’s back panel which is made of EVA foam and air-mesh. The back panel zips along three sides of the bag. The inside features padded partitions that are customizable depending on the amount of gear inside. There are also two zippered back pockets and a velcro pouch on the inside for even more storage options.
This bag features ample storage, has the ability to hold a ton of gear and its construction feels like it can handle life on the road while keeping your camera equipment safe. The zippers on the Hex bag were a little stiff right out of the box, but after a few weeks of use that stiffness has disappeared—I no longer feel like I have to fight with the Hex bag to access my gear.
|A zipper on the very top of the Hex bag makes it easy to access your primary camera without having to open the main gear section.|
Although the bag was quite flat when it was empty as I filled it up with my equipment to prepare for my trip to Austin I became skeptical—I wasn’t sure whether its bulk would become overwhelming.
I was thoroughly impressed by the amount of gear I was able to fit into the Hex: two bodies (a Canon 5D IV and a 5D III), four lenses (35mm, 50mm, 24-70mm and a 70-200mm), a speedlight, an LED on camera light, four batteries, two chargers, a point and shoot film camera, portable HD, a laptop, a laptop charger and an iPad. That being said, as I prepared to head to the airport and catch my flight to Austin I wasn’t sure that the monster would actually be able to fit under my seat (fully loaded the Hex was almost as large as my carry on roller bag).
The bag distributed the weight quite nicely
Although the Hex was certainly heavy with all of this gear, the bag distributed the weight quite nicely. Like many photographers, I’m used to feeling an acute amount of shoulder pain while carrying gear around; I didn’t notice this with the Hex bag.
The various storage options within the bag also made it easy to access the pieces of gear I needed, both while going through security and while waiting for my flight – without pulling everything out. Although getting the Hex under the seat in front of me (really my biggest concern in using the bag as a carry on for my flight) was a bit of a struggle, it wasn’t impossible. However, someone with longer legs might find the situation untenable. Here, the amount of individual storage spaces within the bag also made a big difference, as it was easy to grab what I wanted when I wanted it without unpacking the whole thing.
The Hex was great for safely and comfortably transporting and later storing large amounts of valuable camera equipment
Although having a bag with room for so many lenses and a backup body is a plus, realistically the Hex is just too oversized to make sense in the small music venues bands play during SXSW or a cramped photo pit at a larger show—but the Hex was great for safely and comfortably transporting and later storing large amounts of valuable camera equipment while I was traveling.
A few weeks later I was prepping to hit the road for a week with a touring band from Brooklyn. My gear storage needs were more or less the same but because we would be traveling by van, space was limited. My photo gear needed to take up way less space than the band’s gear, but still be easy to access so I could edit as we drove from city to city.
Its shape and style don’t make it immediately clear that it’s a camera bag
Although the Hex was still too bulky to be a good fit for inside the small venues where the band was playing, its non-descript look made me feel okay about leaving it inside the locked van in numerous cities with my back up equipment still inside. Its shape and style don’t make it immediately clear that it’s a camera bag, which I’d like to think makes it a little less of a target.
The Hex Raven is well designed and feels like it is built to last. The amount of pockets make it easy to organize a large amount of equipment, and they're functional when it comes to finding specific items in a hurry. It’s certainly a little pricey for a camera backpack, but considering the sheer amount of gear that it can accommodate, its durable construction and the classy design, it seems worth the price tag.
I would be interested in checking out a scaled-down version of the Hex for day-to-day use.
Although the bag is too bulky to be good for everyday use, as a travel bag I appreciate its understated design, storage options and the way in which it evenly distributed weight. I would certainly be interested in checking out a scaled-down version of the Hex for day-to-day use.
Sep 14, 2018
Sep 14, 2018
Sep 14, 2018
Sep 13, 2018
When the Fujifilm X-T2 arrived, it was more than just a modest upgrade to the already impressive X-T1. While the new X-T3 hasn't changed the overall design of the camera, this model is way more than an upgrade; rather, it's a quantum leap.
The Movie Maker is a compact, motorized slider designed for phones, action cams and small mirrorless cameras. We think it's a fun little kit and a good value proposition for the cost, provided you can work around a few of its weak points.
Nikon's Z7 is the first camera to use the all-new Z-mount, the company's first new full-frame mount since 1959. We've put together our first impressions based on quality shooting time with a pre-production camera - check out what we've found.
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|Abstract bokeh by Minas_Eye|
from Your City - Bokeh in the City (Rerun)
|Green Tree Frog by BruceRH|
|Custom Red Roadster by Mitchmeister|
from Car Shows 2018
Sigma took the wraps off five new lenses at Photokina this year, and we were there to see (and handle) them for ourselves. Click through for more information, and some early first impressions.
Ricoh has announced the development of a third model in its popular GR lineup: The forthcoming GR III will feature an updated sensor and redesigned lens. We're at Photokina, where we took a quick look earlier at an early sample, behind glass.
It's been a busy old day for news: it's not often you get promised three full-frame cameras by different brands and still have a debate about whether they're the most interesting announcements. To make sure you've not missed anything, we've condensed the day's news down into an easy-to-swallow, er, digest.
At Sony's press conference at Photokina the company announced that 12 more E-mount lenses will be arriving over the next two years. In addition, the company is working to utilize artificial intelligence in its technologies, with one application being Eye AF trained to detect animal eyes.
Sigma has said it will create a full-frame Foveon camera and will adopt the Leica L mount for its system. It will be able to adapt or convert SA mount lenses to the L mount, for existing users.
Hasselblad is expanding their X System with their announcement of three new lenses: the XCD 80mm F1.9, XCD 65mm F2.8 and XCD 135mm F2.8, along with a teleconverter. The 80mm F1.9 is the fastest in the system. Get all the details and check out Hasselblad's official sample images here.
Sigma has announced give new lenses at Photokina, including a 'Sport' series 70-200mm F2.8 and a 56mm F1.4 for Micro Four Thirds and Sony E mounts.
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Leica has announced the S3 medium-format camera – an S2 successor with a 64MP sensor capable of 4K video.
The GFX 50R is a 50MP rangefinder-style mirrorless camera. It borrows heavily from the existing 50S model but in a smaller body and at a lower price. How does it differ?
Fujifilm has announced its GFX 50R, a rangefinder-styled version of the company's GFX 50S medium-format camera. The 'guts' of the two cameras are the same, with the difference being the design, weight and Bluetooth, all at a considerably lower price.
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Panasonic has announced it is developing two full frame mirrorless cameras: the 47MP S1R and the 24MP S1. We've been shown fairly advanced-looking but non-functional prototype cameras, and have been able to squeeze a few details from Panasonic.
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Ricoh has announced the development of the GR III enthusiast compact, due to ship in early 2019. The camera gains sensor-shift image stabilization and an updated 24MP sensor with phase-detection. The 28mm equivalent F2.8 lens has also been redesigned and a touchscreen added.
The 'I'm Back' is now available for a range of old film-SLRs, such as Nikon's F-Series, the Olympus OM10 or the Canon AE-1.
IRIX has announced its latest lens, the 150mm F2.8 Macro 1:1. IRIX claims the lens features 'close to zero' distortion and stands out with its 150mm telephoto focal length.
The RF 24-105mm F4L IS USM is one of four lenses to launch with Canon's new full-frame mirrorless system, and it boasts the longest reach of the range. Take a look at some of the samples we've gathered thus far as our EOS R testing continues.
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A new report from The Verge claims Instagram is currently testing a feature that allows users to re-share posts to their own account feeds.
GoPro has announced its HERO7 camera lineup. The updated action cameras feature new HyperSmooth and TimeWarp modes, as well as improved video and photo specs.
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