View Full Version : Which Lowepro or Kata bag?

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Dirk Goris
January 1st, 2003, 08:21 AM

I've narrowed my search for a bag and these are the nominees :-):
1) The lowepro, compact AW-DV
2) The Kata CCC-102

Who has one of these bags or/and has advice on what to buy.
The price is practically the same.

Which brand has the best reputation regarding weather elements, versatility,....?



PS: Happy newyear guys!!!!!!!!

Paul Sedillo
January 1st, 2003, 10:09 AM
I am a big fan of the Kata bag. It is durable and well worth the money. Not to say that the LowePro is a bad bag, but my money goes to Kata.

Michael Buendia
January 1st, 2003, 02:42 PM
tamrac 979

Mark Austin
January 1st, 2003, 08:36 PM
<<<-- After traveling to Alaska with the GL2 in a bag designed for 35mm, I just spent a couple of days trying out every camera bag I could get my hands on to see if I could get the "perfect" setup for the GL2. As it turned out a dealer here in Houston had one ccc101 (same as the 102) Kata bag in stock and as soon as I tried it I fell in love with it. It's an extremly well designed bag. It's got a strap to secure the camera (none in Lowepro/Tamrac), it's (semi) hard sided, and it's small and that's why I got the GL2 in the first place.

Although it's small it has room for 4-6 tapes, the charger, the remote, a tripod plate, a pcmcia 1394 adapter, firewire, S Video, and RCA (cables), a couple of BP945's if you mount one on the camera, and a couple of filters. <<-- I've got the Kata rain cover now too and it even fits in there with all my other stuff. -->>It bulges a little but the camera is probably more protected in this bag than any of my 35mm stuff is in any of my Tamrac bags (my favorite for that stuff).

I recently traveled several hundred miles over extremly rough terain with it bungeed to the front rack of my ATV, where it got dusty, muddy, and some gulf coast surf spray, and not a single spec of dust, water or a scratch on the GL2! It's small and inexpensive ($90-$145) and is by far the best value of any bag I own. -->>>

I've had the bag for a few months now and I've logged over 6000 air miles with it and it has been banged, stuffed, shoved and cramed into overhead bins, under seats, in cars, planes, and trucks, and tied on ATV racks. I carry the GL2 and bag with me every day too. I wondered how good a bag like this would be after some real world use and I'm more impressed now than I was when I got it. The only possible downside; the strap that secures the camera to the bag latches right over the Canon logo on the LCD, and it has scuffed it up a little, after the abuse I've put the system through it's no wonder. I suppose I could put the camera in the other direction if I wanted to. One thing is for sure, it's tough.

If it ever blows up I'll get the Portabrace, because it's a little larger, and a tad tougher (2x the price too). It'll be a few years from now at the very least.

my 2 cents.

Bart Saerens
January 2nd, 2003, 03:14 AM
I also think I'll go for the Kata bag.

Would it be better to take the CCC-102 instead of CCC-101?
The XM2 seems to be slightly larger than the XM1 and most of the time I've got a BP-941 (large battery) mounted on my XM2.

Does someone use the CCC-102 with a GL2/XM2?
Or do you advice to use the CCC-101 bag, even when large batteries are attached to the cam?


Graham Bernard
January 2nd, 2003, 03:30 AM
I like the sound of the KATA. Anybody know of a supplier in the UK please?


Mark Austin
January 2nd, 2003, 03:42 AM
I have looked at both bags and the 102 is ever so slightly longer, and a little goes a long way sometimes. Again this is what I pack in my bag; 4-6 tapes, the charger including the camera power cable, the remote, a tripod plate, a pcmcia 1394 adapter, firewire, S Video, and RCA cables, two BP945's (they are larger than the 941's) if you mount one on the camera, the Kata rain cover, and a couple of filters. It's not full either. I'll send you a picture of my rig if you like so you can see just how neat it all is. The only thing I really did to make mine totally loveable was to put a lowepro strap on it, it's way more comfortable than the stocker, and I just happened to have one extra lying around.

The only reason I'll ever need a bigger bag is for audio stuff; ma300, shotgun mic with a rycote, some handheld mics, and a small mixer, it which case I'll just get a seperate bag.


Mark Austin
January 2nd, 2003, 03:54 AM
<<<-- Originally posted by Grazie Bernard : I like the sound of the KATA. Anybody know of a supplier in the UK please?

Grazie -->>>

I have seen them on auction sites for $65

Graham Bernard
January 2nd, 2003, 05:14 AM
Mark thank you for your suggestion >> "but if you get it I'll be gad to forward on to the UK." - But we haven't even been on our first Date! - Thanks Mark - But I'll see what I can do - Are all you Texans so damn nice! - How do I take up residency in Houston? I also think you meant "Glad" rather than "gad"!

Oh yes! I've done a little more research and the CCC 102, which is a wee bit larger might be a better option for the longer XM2=GL2 than the XM1=GL1 - yes?

In any event, I'm fedup carrying about my new XM2 in a plastic shopping bag, lined with a pillow - Know what I mean? ;-) . . . Joking aside, a good, anonymous looking "sports-kit" type bag will offer me the option of going out into the wide-world -yes?

Okay - I know I'm now getting greedy, but I've also got my MA300 and a long Senni mike - any thoughts on "stuffing this into the CCC102?

In any event - Mark - thanks for your response . . . and so fast too!


Mark Austin
January 2nd, 2003, 05:28 AM
I could probably put the MA300 in my bag with minimal problems, but I have an Audio Technica AT835b shotgun and it's about 14" long, and even though it would fit, it probably wouldn't be a good idea. The Sennheiser is about 4-5" shorter so no problems there.

Let us know how you make out!

Graham Bernard
January 2nd, 2003, 05:39 AM
Mark - You'd the MAN! - I'll let you know how I "make out" . . . welll . . . Oh yes where would I stick a tripod? Thanks for the Heads-Up on the Senni and the MA300 too.


Mark Austin
January 2nd, 2003, 06:03 AM
You think of everything don't you! Actually I have a table top tripod that I leave on the GL2 sometimes, it folds flat and fits in the bag with all my other "junk".

Dirk Goris
January 2nd, 2003, 06:21 AM
<<<-- Actually I have a table top tripod that I leave on the GL2 sometimes, it folds flat and fits in the bag with all my other "junk".
Mark -->>>

Hi Mark,

Do you have the magical CCC-102 version or the standard version :-) I say this because I find it amazing what you can put in that bag. I'm very interested in some pictures if you don't mind.

Thanks everyone for the input. I think I will go for the Kata bag. One thing if find a petty is that there are no attachments for a tripod at the bottom of the kata bag.

Graham Bernard
January 2nd, 2003, 06:39 AM
I'm off to the wholesaler RIGHT now - once I get me jeans on! It's about 45min train ride away. I'm taking my kit with me to try before I buy.

Thanks Mark et al . . .


Mark Austin
January 2nd, 2003, 07:40 AM
Here are the photos of the Kata CCC-101 bag with contents;

The bag contents include; GL2, MA300, XLR Cable, 5 tapes, the charger including the camera power cable, the remote, a tripod plate, a pcmcia 1394 adapter, (2) firewire, (2) S Video, and (1) RCA cables, two BP945's, the Kata rain cover, a couple of filters, and a Sony desktop tripod.

The bag packed; although I usually don't carry the MA300 in the bag
The mini tripod is also attatched under tha camera so it sits a little higher than when it's off.

And closed;

Now where can I put my lunch???

Dirk Goris
January 2nd, 2003, 08:30 AM
Thanks Mark for the pictures! Would you advice to go with the 101 like you or go for the 102.

Don't you miss an attachement for your tripod while on a bike or when you are on foot?

Which rain cover do you use?

Thanks again.

Mark Austin
January 2nd, 2003, 08:42 AM
I'd go with the bigger one if you can, even a little bit more would be great.

My tripod is so heavy, I wouldn't want to attach it to the Kata bag. I have a seperate bag for it with a nice soft strap. Maybe a carbon monopod, but I doubt I'd use a mono for video, I'm shaky enough as it is.

I have the Kata rain cover designed for the GL/XM1-2, it has kept it dry so far.


Graham Bernard
January 2nd, 2003, 11:19 AM
Just returned from wholesaler. Kata CCC 102, cost £75gb net taxes. When packed looks a whole lot like yours! Got my long Senni in it AND the MA300; PLUS a "belt-pod" steady shot device. Plus my WD58; PLUS a mini light - and there's space for my lunch too!

Thanks Mark!


Mark Austin
January 2nd, 2003, 12:54 PM
I hope it holds up as well as mine has.

Leonard Leguizamo
January 2nd, 2003, 02:08 PM
I use the Tamrac Superlight 48 (5448). Its made for SLR equipment but the compartments are easily adaptable for the GL2 + accessories. With the GL2 in the bag (with wide angle adapter, thanks to the 14" of interior length), you still have another 2-3 inches space along the inside length of the bag. Very easily fits all the accessories + my rangefinder G2 camera which I also take with me; all in one lightweight bag. Also has more compartments then the KATA or Lowepro bags mentioned earlier. High recommended and not that much bigger then the other bags. I take it to Maui with no problems, never got in the way or too heavy. Only $70. See description below: F2B6AD1D5C0

Dirk Goris
January 6th, 2003, 02:07 AM
This weekend I had the opportunity to touch the Kata CCC-102 and I must say that I'm not all that impressed by it. Here in Belgium it costs $141 or 157 Euro. I find this to much money for what it is. Apart from the fact that the samsonite and the lowepro look more like a camerabag they are much better priced and they look well disigned too. The Kata has the advantage to be yellow inside. This means you find your small items faster but it also means that the inside of the bag get dirty much faster.

I still think the rebuild lunchbox is the best solution :-)

I'm back at the beginning of my search.


Graham Bernard
January 6th, 2003, 04:50 AM
Hiyah Dirk - Well there's a thing! The LowePro are more expensive in UK - by about £120gb - yes? Port-A-brace do some products which are in a similar price bracket as the LowePro. I felt the PaB didn't offer much more than the KATA esp. for the extra ££s . Soooo that's why I decided on the KATA. Now maybe I might also purchase a KATA back pack - I'll see. I do like the KATA's option of being able to pull back the double zip and have - as it were - an open, stable toolbox to rummage around in. This I've used over the weekend and find it superb. AND I can quickly zip it back closed again.

Good hunting Dirk! - Been to Brussels often - love the fishmarket and the astounding range of Fish restaurants not far from it. Mussels to die for! And the people are so smashing! Great time.


Frank Granovski
January 6th, 2003, 06:06 AM
Hmmm, in Canada Lowepro bags are a steal while Port A Brace bags are big bucks. Kata bags? I've never even seen them here. Funny how prices can be so different, depending on where you live (to buy). If I lived in France, I would surely have a complete set of Cokin screw in filters...if I lived in the USA, I'd surely own a VX2000 or GL2...Bonk! Back to Canadian reality, where you get the better buy via FEDEX---from who knows where. Thanks to the Internet, it makes researching and buying easy!

Dirk Goris
January 6th, 2003, 06:17 AM
Port-a-brace is very expensive in Belgium too. Shop owners say it has a lot to do with transportation costs. Lowepro is much cheaper. The cheapest bag in the catagory of known brand names for the xm2 here is the samsonite trekking 220.

Graham Bernard
January 6th, 2003, 06:26 AM
Yeah - saw the Samsonite on the web - looked good. The cheaper models I'm not sure would do the thang for the XM2 - Another reason for the KATA.


Bart Saerens
January 8th, 2003, 09:31 AM
Is anyone using the Lowepro Compact AW DV bag?
I've just ordered one today for my XM2 ;-)

Looks like a great bag ... but tell me if I'm wrong.
What I'm not sure of, is if you need to lift up the eyeviewfinder to fit the camera in the bag.

Dirk Goris
January 8th, 2003, 09:41 AM
Hi Bart,

Imho you made a great (but expensive) choice. I've seen a bag of the AW serie in a store and it looked rock solid! Where have you bought it and what did you pay for it? The cheapest price I've found was Ä 188.10 at Grobet in Antwerp. I've decided to go for the lowepro vidcam5 bag because of the price and quality.

Bart Saerens
January 8th, 2003, 12:20 PM
Hi Dirk

The retail price in Belgium for the Lowepro Compact AW DV is 197 EUR.
I'll have a 10% discount from a friend of mine ....

I hope the bag will be large enough to hold the XM2 ;-)
Lowepro also has a "Commercial AW DV" but that one should be used to hold the XL1s.

Delivery of my Lowepro bag will be Friday this week or Wednesday next week.


Dany Nativel
January 12th, 2003, 11:50 PM
I use the Kata CCC 3333.

I've added some extra padding and design a foam case for the minimount. My goal was to be able to fit the GL2/WD-58H/sun shade/BP945 battery (in one piece) + headphone + ME66/K6 Power module/Rycote Softie/minimount/universal shoe holder (in one piece).

The CCC 333 allows all of that on the upper compartment and leave you the under compartment for battery charger, tapes and others.

I'm in a process of generating some webpages to show my setup (XLR cable, bag, minimount protection...). I'm especially proud of my ME66-Softie case using .... a Toilet Brush Holder (perfect diameter, hard plastic).

When you place the GL2 "naked" into the CCC 3333, you could say "this bag is way to big for this small baby" but when you add all the accessories it makes sense. Not the mention the original design of thi bag that allows you to add extra padding to maintain everything in place but because of the position of the zip will ease the extraction of the equipment when the bag is open.


Dirk Goris
January 13th, 2003, 12:59 AM
This weekend I bought the lowepro vidcam 5. The camera fits in nicely. Like it was made only for the GL2. My only concern is that there isn't much room left for other accessories. I know someone on this community who adviced against the vidcam 6 because of the big but I can't see me taking a lot of accessories with the 5.

Bart Saerens
January 13th, 2003, 07:47 AM
I'll have my Lowepro Comapct AW DV at the end of this week.
I need room for my XM2, battery charger and cables, 4 BP941 batteries (1 of them attached to the cam), MiniDV tapes, headphone (haven't thought about that before) and an on camera light in the future.
Actually all the accessoires that came with my XM2 should also be hold in the bag.

We'll see if it works ;-)


Bart Saerens
January 19th, 2003, 02:14 PM
Just to let you know that everything fits well in the Lowepro Compact AW DV bag!

The bag even includes a rain cover! Not for the camera but to pull over the bag in rainy conditions.

There's plenty of room for several BP-941/945 batteries, DV tapes, cables, ....


January 19th, 2003, 05:17 PM

After reading this threat I was wondering is someone give me some advice about buying a bag, witch fits the GL2 with the large eyecup on.

I saw many pictures with a GL2 in a bag, but none with the large eyecup. Just pressing the eyecup together to fit it in a bag is not the best idear I think.
So what's a good bag to use when using the large eyecup


Michael Buendia
January 19th, 2003, 07:26 PM
tamrac 979. gl2 fits perfect even with the videosmith eyecup!

Scott Silverman
January 19th, 2003, 10:56 PM
About two weeks ago I ordered a KATA CCC-102 from B&H. When I got it in I opened up the box and immediatly knew it was going to be too big for my needs. The case is large. If your looking for a semi-large case that will fit your GL2 and a load of accessories, the CCC-102 is the case for you. I was looking for somthing slightly larger than my GL2. Big enough to store the GL2, some tapes, an extra battery and the AV cable. If your looking for a nice compact case to carry your GL2 in I would not reccomend the 102. I returned the 102 and have ordered a CCC-101 which is a couple inches smaller in the length, heigth and width. Just a warning if you are ordering the 102 looking for a ultra compact bag that is not what you will get. I would say the 101 is your ultra compact bag. There are also some Tamracs that fit the GL2 very nicely.

Gabriel: My guess is that any bag that fits the GL2 with the small eye cup will fit it with the large eye cup also. I know the CCC-102 will fit it because that bag has plenty of room. I will let you know if the CCC-101 fits the GL2 with large eye cup when it arrives from B&H.

Happy bag hunting!

Richard D. George
January 23rd, 2003, 01:50 PM
I too considered the LowePro Compact AW DV or one of the Kata bags. I settled on a third choice that has worked out quite well:

LowePro Nova 5, with the inserts for a Compact AW DV inserts substituted for the Nova 5 inserts, and with the LowePro Deluxe shoulder strap substituted for the Nova 5 strap. The DV insert set has to be purchased directly from LowePro. This combination is far lighter and less bulky than the Compact AW DV, yet has essentially the same room, which I need for the following:

Canon GL 2 with Century 0.65X zoom-through lens attached
Century FA 100 (I think that is the number) lens shade (it is big!)
Sennheiser MKE 300 shotgun mike (detached)
Extra Canon battery packs & charger
Blank tapes, all pre-blacked with time code, and numbered
Folded white cotton T-shirt for white balance & misc.
Small spiral notebook & pen
LED flashlight
Cleaning items, including small air can
GL 2 manual, with French section trimmed off.
Remote control
Extra batteries for MKE 300
Sennheiser HD 280 Pro headphones, folded (wonderful!)

There is also room for a Beachtek XLR adapter

Vito Zarrillo
January 23rd, 2003, 03:03 PM
For what it is worth, I just purchased a GREAT bag for my GL2 and (increasing growing) accessories. It is the Lowepro Dryzone 200. It is a fairly large backpack style carrier. The interior is customizable, so as far as the large eyecup is concerned, no problem with this one. Besides being completely waterproof (the guts of the bag is protected within a completely watertight rubber "pod"), it is large enough to carry:

4 large batteries/charger
10 tapes
On board light
Hand held mic
Portabrace Polar Mitten
All in all, it is a great bag for people on the go, who might find themselves in some not so desirable shooting conditions.

January 23rd, 2003, 03:19 PM
I just found a dealer in The Netherland who sells this nice Lowepro Dryzone 200.

The bag looks very nice
But this price is way to much
500 euro (500 dollar)

I was looking for something cheaper (if that's possible)


Vito Zarrillo
January 23rd, 2003, 03:27 PM
Wow. That IS really expensive. I got mine from B&H Photo for $245 (which I thought was expensive, but worth it). I don't know what their international shipping rates are but here is the link to the bag if you want to check it out. 80B9A240

Good luck

January 23rd, 2003, 03:48 PM
If I buy one at that site, the bag will cost (inc shipping) 300 dollar
That's a lot cheaper than 500.

One of the largest problems in The Netherlands is, that you can hardly find any of these populair bags in stores.
Lowepro, Kata, and simulair, they don't sell them in shops, only on order, so you never get the chance to look at a good bag, and look inside it.

All the el echeapo bags of an unknown brand are availble in stores, but some nice brands are hard to find.


Dany Nativel
January 23rd, 2003, 08:06 PM
As I posted before, I use the Kata CCC-3333.
When using only the GL2 without any accessory, it looks pretty funny : in CCC3333 alone.JPG

Then when you pack everything, itís much better : in CCC3333.JPG

For the lower compartment, Iíve also added some extra foam to keep the structure rigid : compart.JPG extra foam.JPG

On the upper compartment :
- In one piece : GL2/WD-58H/sun shade/BP945 battery/Large eye cup
- In one piece : ME66/K6 Power module/Rycote Softie/minimount/universal shoe holder using Toilet Brush Holder and foam case
- Headphone
- Various eye cups

I have added some foam have additional protection for the top of the cam. When the bag is closed, the foam around the minimount case is compressed so the GL2 cannot move.

On the lower compartment :
- Battery charger
- Cables
- ++ plenty of space for additional items

On the front pocket :
- Tapes
- cleaning stuff
- Batteries
- White balance card
- notebook and pen (pen also used to turn on/off the low-cut filter of the ME66)

On the cam, I also have a mini-jack (metal) to XLR cable and a mini-jack to mini-jack adapter for the headphone. They both stay all the time on the cam so it minimizes the number of insertions.

Mike Butler
January 27th, 2003, 07:17 PM
OK, I know LowePro and Kata are both good quality bags from reputable companies...I use Lowepro for some of my still cameras. BUT...after two years on the road with my Porta Brace for the XL1, I can tell you that I am getting another Porta Brace to shelter my newly acquired GL1 (yeah, I know, discontinued model, I bought the store display model for a discounted price and it'll be perfect for second camera).

The PB bag still looks new after shlepping thru a multitude of airports and field production assignments, and of course the camera has been very well protected by the bag from the abuse of travel. feel the pain of the higher price today but every day afterward you feel good about owning the best. Just my $.02 worth here...

(by the way, I don't work for Porta Brace or have any affiliation with them, but it's nice you can call them up and get a real live person on the phone that knows your camera and can suggest solutions and even tell you about dealers in your area**)

**oh yes, and no doubt Chris's dealers also can sell you the PB bags.

January 29th, 2003, 03:15 PM

I hope someone can help me.
I am looking for a nice bag, and I hope some people can send me some pictures, of the Gl2 with lenshood and large eyecup on in this kata cc 101 bag.

I only want to see this GL2/XM2 (not a fully loaded bag), so I can see how much space is left in the bag.

Some people say the cc 101 is to small, and I shoud buy a 102.
With some picturs, I can clearly see the differance.
Here in The Netherlands I can not find a store who has the Kata bags.

So I hope someon will help me


February 2nd, 2003, 02:53 PM
anybody on this forum?

Dirk Goris
February 3rd, 2003, 04:04 AM
the question already has been asked and you can see pictures of the ccc-101 on page one of this thread.

Rob Wilson
February 3rd, 2003, 10:27 PM
Didn't notice anyone mention it, but I'm using a bag by Petrol (PCCB1) link at BH below. It holds my GL2, cables, spare batt, charger, headphones and more. It's a little taller than optimum for the GL2 but works well. 35F3983150

Richard D. George
February 7th, 2003, 11:07 AM
I previously posted regarding the use of a Lowepro Nova 5, customized with inserts for a Lowepro Compact DV. This is a good solution for a GL2 "around town". I just purchased a Lowepro Nature Trekker AW backpack, with a Lowepro Day Pack attachment, for ski-trips, hiking, etc. It nicely holds roughly the same gear as the Nova 5, plus clothes, lunch, first aid kit, etc. in the Day Pack attachment. The Day Pack attachment does not interfere with opening the main pack. The interior space is similar to the intererior space of the Dry Zone, but with less exterior bulk, and less expensive. The AW cover should suffice in the event of brief rain showers.

Video & digital still gear in the main pack:

- Canon GL 2 with Century 0.65x zoom through wide angle adapter.
- Century FA-100 lens hood
- Sennheiser MKE 300 microsphone
- Sennheiser HD 280 Pro headphones
- Extra Canon batteries
- Spare battery for microphone
- Pen and small spiral notebook
- GL 2 manual with French section trimmed off
- Sony head cleaning tape
- Blank Sony Mini DV tapes, numbered and blacked with time code
- Cables and battery charger
- Canon G2 digital camera with adaptor for wide angle lens
- Canon wide angle lens for G2
- Canon EX 420 speedlite and off-camera cord for G2
- white cotton t-shirt
- LED flashlight
- compass
- Multi-function tool

There should be room whenever I swith to a Beachtek adaptor and Sennheiser 66 / K9 mike

This pack is also very good for airline carry on, though anything suspected of being a weapon would have to be packed elsewhere.

Lowepro Trekker series backpacks have quite a loyal following among outdoor (still) photographers.

Richard D. George
Denver / Lakewood
Beautiful Colorado

Will Fastie
February 15th, 2003, 10:40 AM
I'm using a Porta-Brace CS-DV3 case for my GL2. What sets it apart from the other cases mentioned here is its size, which is larger. See it at

I experimented with a few bags in stores before settling, sight unseen, on the PB. I like it because a) it's built like a tank, b) the camera goes in and out very quickly, and c) it has lots of room. When I'm mobile, I usually just take the bag and grab one of my tripods; the handles on the DV3 are tall enough and the bag itself is strong enough to allow me to plop the tripod on top between the handles and then carry the "kit" with one hand.

All my audio gear is in another bag, but there's plenty of room in the DV3 for me to toss in some other mics and my good headphones.

I also use the large eyecup on the GL2. The cam/cup combo fit in the case with no problem, although careful positioning of the carrier for the cam is required to minimize scrunching of the cup.

I thought the $170 price (B&H) was a bit high until I got the bag. Now I think it's reasonable.

Rasmus Forman
January 22nd, 2004, 03:37 AM
where is the best/chepest place to buy kata bags in europe - and other canon XM2 accessories?

Graham Bernard
January 22nd, 2004, 04:48 AM
Whereabouts are you?