I tend to be somewhat on the better-safe-than-sorry side when it comes to shooting and traveling. Aside from the obvious camera and lenses, I usually bring quite a few accessories and other production gear. (You can never have too many SSD’s audio options, cables, and power). The last camera bag I reviewed, the Orca OR-516 was spacious enough to fit all my gear, but sadly, it was too big to fit in most planes. I was constantly negotiating with the airplane personnel to let me put it in the cabin, but sometimes, the overhead storage was just not big enough, and I had to farewell with my precious gear for the flight. (i;ve seen how they handle the bags in general storage, it’s scary). That’s when I decided to test the Manfrotto Pro Light Reloader Spin 55, which was the perfect size for air travel.
When it comes to running a smooth production, everyone loves their kit. The problem is that carrying your kit around can be quite an unpleasant experience. Between all the bags of gear, you can really get lost. Enter My Case Builder, where you can make your dream case.
It’s not only the size and padding, My Case Builder (MCB) can create a highly customized case that literally fits all your gear in the most precise way.
Take Maor Cohen, for example. Maor is a commercial videographer who shoots fashion. He uses a Tilta Float with a hefty BMPCC rig attached. It’s a wide 45cm rig and does not fit in any standard bag. Between the BMPCC rig and all the accessories Maor brings to a shoot, he was walking around with quite a few bags. We needed to end this.
For the last five years, I’ve been using a ThinkTank Photo Airport International bag for my video needs, and I love it to pieces. Sadly, as the years went by and as my kit got larger, I needed more space. I did not want to carry a second case, so I was looking for a similar roller case but with more space. After looking at a few options, I got the newly announced OR-516 from Orca for $323.00.
What can I say I love it. It has a lot of character and plenty of space and protection. For the full review hit the jump.
Photographers and videographers alike are plagued with the burden of carrying equipment, it’s really just part of the job. Whether you’re a photographer who wants to have all your flashes ready in a jiffy, or a videographer who has multiple systems and multiple lenses; you’ll eventually have to move your gear from point A to point B.
Backpacks have always been the way to go for me, they’re usually not very bulky, have more space, and are not restricted to any specific dimensions. However, as someone who travels a lot, I can find myself lugging a 25+ kilos backpack around airports with kilometers of walking at a time (thanks, Madrid). So it finally happened, I caved in and switched to the Manfrotto Pro Light Reloader Switch-55. (Amazon | B&H)
So now that you’ve picked out the camera, lenses and lighting gear you want, you need to figure out what you’re going to store and transport it all in. That’s why this buying guide is all about bags and cases. There really is no ideal bag that fits every situation you might find yourself in, but here are some of our favourites and those we use on a daily basis.
If there’s one thing about camera bags and cases, it’s that we never seem to have enough. Like the cameras they contain, they just build up and multiply over time. We justify the collection of bags and cases by saying that each has a different purpose. That they’re all used when shooting in different circumstances.
And while “the perfect camera bag” can never exist, there can be perfect examples of particular types of bags for each of those different circumstances. And when circumstances call for a roller case, the Lowepro PhotoStream SP 200 comes pretty close.
The Think Tank Logistics Manager 30 is my absolute favorite when it comes to all the camera bags, stand bags, photo bags and other bags I own for my flash equipment, tripods and cameras.
However, it is just like almost all rolling cases, mostly made to be transported inside airports, offices or other places with a flat and even floor. With small and silly undersized skateboard-like wheels it immediately becomes hard or impossible to use it on gravel roads or a bumpy asphalt. Not to mention in a meadow with grass.
Roller cases aren’t something I use very often. They’re just not practical for most of the locations at which I shoot (rocky, rough ground around rivers, lakes, etc). But sometimes they’re absolutely the best tool for the job. Last week, for example, DIYP covered The Photography Show. And on an exhibition hall floor, a roller case is perfect for carting gear around.
Lowepro has made roller cases before, but until now they’ve all been two wheeled cases. They’ve upped the wheel count to 4, though, with the new Lowepro PhotoStream SP 200. Lowepro had a couple on display at their stand during the show, so I got to see one in person, and boy is it a nice roller case.