Published on August 28th, 2013 | by Greg
Inside Line’s Ultimate Photographers Bag Fits It All
If you’re a photographer, you know how quickly gear can add up. If you’re doing even a small shoot, you want a couple of lenses and bodies, an external flash for fill, and the usual accessories- memory cards, batteries, chargers, filters, and the like. You probably need to haul your laptop with you and/or an iPad. And all of the gear is expensive, and needs some decent protection, both internally and externally.
The Inside Line Ultimate Photographers Bag MKIII is not for just any old shutterbug. It’s a sizeable bag, suitable for the most serious folks, built to exacting specifications, weatherproof and shielded, durable and handmade in California. If you just need a single body and a small lens, you’re better off finding something smaller. But for the photographer who is looking for the perfect piece to carry on a flight or out to a trip to a shoot with uncertain weather or condition, the MKIII is ideal.
Taking design cues from bags like those from Chrome, this is the third and most recent version of the line, which features fairly typical dividers- just more of them, seven total- along with side pockets for your monopod or water bottle and nicely padded shoulder and sternum straps. The bottom of the bag is well-sealed and made from ballistic nylon, so you don’t need to worry about random puddles. The rest of the bag’s body is made from high-end 1000D Cordura, and we really liked the separate padded, zippered sleeve in the rear of the bag that fits up to a 17″ MacBook Pro.
There are three major areas aside from the rear laptop sleeve: the roll-top area that can fit a jacket or change of clothes or random electronics and rolls down tight if unnededed, the main compartment for your camera gear below that, and a front pocket section for quick access to things like your tablet, pens or pencils, and such. We would’ve liked to see a bit more reflective taping for safety at night, on a bike or just walking around. With a capacity of 30L, it can be easy to lose gear, but the design of the MKIII is just about perfect- the weight balance makes sense, and the different compartments are each easily accessible but distinct and well-protected. We took the bag out in a storm and not a drip reached the gear. Abundant straps and the interesting MOLLE system on the exterior are pretty nifty, though you might find grabbing your gear a bit more involved than with some bag options, and you might need to find a way to silence the velcro for quiet environment shoots.
The Inside Line Ultimate Photographers Bag MKIII is available now, online directly from the manufacturer, for around $380. That’s among the most expensive camera bags that we’ve tested, but it feels like a suitable pricetag for what you’re getting. The cost gave us pause at first, but when you’re dealing with thousands of dollars in equipment, it’s worth it for a bag that will hold up. It’s available in a few colors, red and cyan among them, but the basic black that we tested goes with everything.