I know that Peak Design’s Everyday Messenger has been here for a while. I’ve been using it for about four months now as my “lighter bag” and wanted to share my thought about why I think that it’s a great bag for small kits, and probably not the right choice if you have more gear.
Let me say this though, I love bags. A new bag is a check that cashes immediacy. You don’t need to take photos with it, no need to set it up, no need to bring a model in. the minute you buy a photography bag, it delivers. This is why I have lots and lots of bags. And this is why buying this (or any) photography bag will make you happy on the spot. Ready? lets jump in.
Concept and build
As the name suggests, the Everyday Messenger bag is a messenger bag. It carries around one shoulder and rests somewhat diagonally on your back. On you are a fan of this type of bags, you’ll love the Everyday messenger. If you need a more balanced option, have a look at regular backpacks.
The bag feels very high-end. the materials feel nice, the zippers are rough and smooth, and the velcro and latch are a higher grade. even before starting to quip the bag, it feels nice to touch it. It is definitely an item to show off with.
There are two items that I was happily surprised to find: the zippers seem waterproof, and so is the bottom of the bag. That means that the bag can take some wet-abuse and keep its content relatively dry. Even if you leave it on a wet floor. I could not find anything about this on Peak Design’s website, but this is what it looks like. Submerge at your own risk.
The bag is made with one main compartment and several smaller pockets and slits.
I managed to fit in a mirrorless body, 2-3 lenses (depending on size), a 15″ small laptop and some knicks-knacks like memory cards, chargers, a mini tripod and so on.
The main compartment is the heart of the bag, and you can adjust the dividers in a clever way to match your workflow and gear. Adjusting the dividers tough is not just moving them side to side. They have an origami feature that allows them to be tall or low, straight or right-angled, or even disappear completely. I would think that this flexibility would come in exchange for protection, but the dividers feel foamy enough. There are three of them, so at max, you can have up to four compartments.
There is an external pocket for a 15″ laptop. That means a Macbook, Dell XPS or similar. A full-fledged 15.6″ HP Zbook studio was too much and popped out a bit.
Under the cover, and next to the main compartment, there is a small front pocket with a zipper. It will work well for cables, small hard-drives, cards, and batteries.
Let’s start with the basics. The strap is solid, it is made from a similar material to the one found on seat belts so it almost does not wear off and I am sure it will not tear. Even after four months of heavy use, it still looks new.
There is a small padded part on where your shoulder is to make it a little more comfy, but it was not enough padding for me, and I felt the pressure of the belt on my shoulder. On the other hand, this is how messenger bags work. If you want less weight on one shoulder, get a backpack. If you are planning on carrying the bag for extended periods on time walking, there is a small strap on the bag that connects to the “regular” strap and supposed to provide better balance.
You can get to your gear in one of two ways, open the flap, or unzip a long zipper on the top. For fully loading the bag, open the flap. For fast access to your camera, you can use the zipper. I find this feature very clever and super convenient when you need to run and gun. In any case, the zipper is easier to access when you are on the street and need to take something out of the bag and you slide it to the front.
The main compartment has a small pouch for a phone or a passport. It is somewhat hidden but still accessible with the top zipper.
The only thing I was missing is a small external pocket for a phone.
The bag locks with a clever latch. Depending on how high you place the latch, you can control the size (fatness) of the bag. So you can have a thin bag or a wider one, depending on where you place the latch. That latch is also clever in the sense that there is a “trick” to opening it. It’s not hard, you just have to know the trick. A random bloke trying to snag a lens of your bag would have a hard time.
I like this bag! Even after four months,I like this bag. It has been four months and I am still discovering a new feature here and there every once in a while. If you are looking at use cases, I would recommend this bag to mirrorless shooters, with a light setup. Say an extra lens or two. Once you get a little heavier, it becomes awkward to carry, and it is time to move to a backpack.
For $249.95 (Amazon | B&H) it is one of the better options out there.
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