View Full Version : Backpack for Gear Including GL2

Jon Welker
August 27th, 2004, 06:25 PM
Before anything else, yes, I did do searches on this site and countless other sites researching backpacks.

OK, this is my first post on this forum, and my recent purchase of a GL2 and endless search for knowledge of has led me to this website. I belong to a couple of home theater threads, which are very helpful. I am a complete amateur to camcorders, but I do have pretty much a full digital camera setup, with lenses, filters, and flashes to boot.

I am in desparate search for a good, quality backpack for my GL2, digtital camera and accessories, and laptop. I've done a lot of research, and have narrowed it down to the following backpacks:

- Lowepro CompuTrekker
- Delsey Pro Digital Backpack 31/33
- Crumpler Brian's Hot Tub or Shrinkle
- Tenba Pro Digital Backpack DB15/17C

From what I've researched, they all have their strengths & weaknesses. I also looked at the Kata BP-502, but it's a little too expensive for me. I'm looking to stay under $200. I'm looking for decent waterproof functionality, but I won't be trekking through the rain forests. Anyway, I was looking for some firsthand experience from anybody who has one of the above bags. Thougts???

Jeff Donald
August 27th, 2004, 08:04 PM
I recently reviewed the Kata bags and the 401/402 are what you need for a GL series camera. I believe both come with a waterproof cover as well. The 502 is for much larger cameras, such the XL series. The price is well under $200 also and they offer excellent protection for laptops. The suspension system is also well designed and very comfortable over a wide range of adjustments.

Jon Welker
August 28th, 2004, 05:09 PM
Jeff, thanks for your reply. I've actually decided to take a bit of a different approach to this. I went ahead and ordered the Crumpler Brian's Hot Tub, Delsey Pro Digital Backpack 33, and the Tenba DB15C. I ordered the latter two from BH, and the Crumpler from They should all be arriving mid-week. Once they arrive, I'll be putting them through their paces in terms of build quality, functionality, storage capacity compared to what I have, and "coolness" factor. The "coolness" factor will be for features that go above and beyond what you would expect from one of these types of backpacks. If anyone is interested about anything in particular on these, please let me know and I will report back for you. Almost forgot to mention that whichever ones don't make the cut, they'll be returned. If none of them work, then I'll continue my search, and order the Panda to check it out, probably along with the Lowepro. Thanks.

David Yuen
August 30th, 2004, 08:38 PM
Would you please include in your review if any of the bags are airline carry-on-sized, or at least close to it? I am carrying a GL2, big laptop and an Epson projector and my Jansport Lap Station can only fit 2 of the components. Thanks.

Jeff Donald
August 30th, 2004, 08:43 PM
The two Kata bags are airline approved.

Jon Welker
August 30th, 2004, 09:20 PM

No problem. I used to be a road warrior in my former consulting life, but have settled down since. I remember I could always carry on my Lowepro S&F Rover Light without any problems. If these bags are similar in size to my Lowepro (which I think they are), then they should be fine to carry on. Unless, something has drastically changed in the past year. They should all be arriving this Wednesday.

Jon Welker
September 1st, 2004, 09:00 PM
Well, the Crumpler Brian's Hot Tub showed up today from, and you all are going to have to wait for a full review until the rest of the bags get here (tomorrow from B&H), but I'd like to post some initial impressions. I will also try to get some pics of each bag loaded up with my gear. That was one of my biggest complaints when shopping online...lack of useful pics.

Well, I took it out of the box, and proceeded to load'er up with all my gear. Mind you I am referring to the following:

- Canon GL2
- Sony DSC-S85 Digital Camera
- Sony Vaio w/ 14.1" screen (10.5"W x 13"L x 1"D)
- Sony Telephoto Lens
- Sony Wide Angle Lens
- Sony External Flash for S85 (big dude itself)
- Couple of Filter Paks
- Couple of Filter Kits in little boxes
- Lens Hood for GL2
- 8 Memory Stick Aluminum Case
- Extra S85 Battery
- Varous GL2 cables, battery charger, etc.
- Various S85 cables, battery charger, etc.
- Laptop Power Supply
- Various and Sundry other items

I know! Lots of crap to stuff in a bag! Anyway, I was able to get all the "essential" camcorder and camera gear into the bag, with the exception of power chargers. Then I strapped the laptop into it's designated case. Thought I was about there, but could not close the backpack. I would've had to sit on the sucker to get it closed! I was able to rearrange the dividers nicely to house the GL2 right in the center, and it does have a nice padded insert to go right over the top of it. I won't go into any further details at this time. I guess what I'm saying is, the pack that holds the most crap, wins! Maybe none of them will fit everything. In that event, I'll probably return all 3, and get a Lowepro Nature or Photo Trekker II AW. Stay tuned.

JM Underwood
September 3rd, 2004, 06:14 AM
<<<-- Originally posted by Jeff Donald : I recently reviewed the Kata bags and the 401/402 are what you need for a GL series camera. -->>>

Hey Jeff,

The Kata Panda-402 ( looks pretty cool from what I can tell on their web site.

Did you end up buying this?
If so, how do you like it, and where did you get it from for how much?
Is there room for accessories like mic systems and small lights?


Jeff Donald
September 3rd, 2004, 07:34 AM
I actually reviewed the 401, which is being replaced by the 402. The 402 is slightly larger and has better top protection. My only minor complaint with the 401 is the size of the laptop holder. It is designed for pretty thick laptops and is not adjustable enough for the new slimmer designs. I solved it by just wrapping additional padding around the laptop so it would fill a larger space. I better strap adjustment arraignment would solve the issue as well.

There is room for additional accessories such as a still camera and a lens or two some audio gear. Or leave home the 35mm and cram the top full of audio gear. Kata also make a line of audio bags and they can be matched with the backpacks. The 502 Kata is larger still and would hold enough gear that you could hurt yourself just trying to lift the bag. Just kidding, but it is a large backpack.