I'm a newbie to DSLR photography, so when I bought my first DSLR camera, I got duped into buying a package with a small Canon 100EG camera bag included in the price. At first this was great. The bag was small, light wight, compact, making it easy to carry around. I soon found that my camera outgrew the bag (pretty much immediately) after buying just a flash gun.
I started looking for a larger bag that could hold the kit I had and any additional kit I'd buy in the future. I wanted something that I could carry my laptop in as well, for when I go on holiday, so I can transfer any photos straight to my laptop rather that have lots of extra memory cards.
I bought this for use with my Canon EOS 500D DSLR Camera. I was looking for a bag that would hold my camera, a couple of lenses, a flash gun, a laptop and a few other bit's and peices as time goes on.
After doing a lot of searching on the internet I kept getting pointed back to Lowepro bags. I had come across Lowepro bags previously, but had never actually owned one.
I found a lots of excellent written reviews about this bag online, which made me want this bag. I then came across a couple of video reviews on YouTube which really convinced me to buy this bag.
I currently have the following gear in this bag: * Canon EOS 500D Camera body (with a Canon EP-EX15ii Eye Peice Extender, Canon BG-E5 battery grip & Canon EF-S 18-55mm Kit lens & Canon EW-60C Lens Hood attatched) * Canon EF-S 55-250mm Lens (with Canon ET-60 Lens hood reverse attched for storage) * Canon EF 50mm Lens (with Canon ES-62 Lens Hood reverse attatched for storage) Each lens also has Canon UV filters attatched (to reduce glare & for added protection of the front of the lens) * Canon Speedlite 430EXii Flash Gun (in neoprane carry case) * Sto-Fen OM-EW Omni Bounce Flash Diffuser. * Panasonic HDC-SD10 HD Camcorder. * 15.4" HP laptop (in a Belkin Neoprene Sleeve). * Chargers for the Canon camera, Panasonic camcorder & HP laptop. * Various cables to connect the cameras to a television or computer. * User manuals for the camera, camcorder & flash. * Lens cleaning equipment (including Giottos Rocket Air Blower, Lens cleaning fluid, microfibre cloth, lens pen) * A couple of USB flash/thumb drives. * 2.5" Seagate Expansion 500Gb Portable Hard Drive (in a Case Logic protective case). * Trekmates small (25-45L) waterproof cover (why Lowepro couldn't include these as standard on all their bags, I don't know).
A few people have said it is worth getting additional cases to house your lenses in to offer additional protection (whether they be the thinish bag type or thicker neoprene types). This bag can easily accommodate these, but I don't think they will be neccessary as the bag itself is more than adequately padded.
Even with all these items in the bag, it feels suprizingly light and easy to carry around.
The bag has plenty of compartments/pockets to store a multitude of different items. The main compartment can be customised to store your equipment how you find best.
One criticism, that another reviwer gave was the fact that to use the quick access feature (to remove your camera quickly) you need to carry the bag on you left shoulder. I found this true at first, as I was used to carrying ruck sacks on my right shoulder, but after a couple of weeks carrying it around I don't find it an issue anymore.
My only criticism would be the fact that you cannot actually lock the zipper compartments using a padlock. Not such a big deal, as the bag is designed in such a way, that if anyone did try to open the zips you should be able to feel it.
Fully loaded the bag can feel a little bit on the large side, so you need to be some what careful walking around making sure you don't knock anything over when turning around.
Overall, a very good quality and highly padded bag that can hold so much kit.