Sometimes it gets a bit chaotic with all that gear that's lying around. Well, not laying, but it's stowed all over the office. There is also an increasing chance to forget something on the shoot because its hidden somewhere and you don't really be sure if you have it with you. Anyway, that's what my fear was sometimes. Then I decided to get myself a camera-bag which should solve all this problems. After some research I decided on the LowePro ProRoller x200WD and I am absolutely happy with it. Read further to get to know why.
WHAT I WAS LOOKING FOR
Before buying such a piece of storage, you have to be clear what you want or what the bag should be capable of. For me it where three things: It must contain all my camera-gear including all lenses, all filters, a flash an some batteries and all that stuff, it must be small enough to fit airliner-hand-baggage-regulations and it must be not obviously that its a camera-bag.
It took me a lot of time to researched different backpacks. But every backpack was either to small to carry all my gear or too big to fit the hand-luggage-regulation. So my research headed into roller-bags and settled real soon on Lowepro. But they have different Models for Roller, there are the ProRoller-Lineup and the Photostream-Lineup.
Whilst the Photostream-cases are lightweight, smaller and cheaper, they lack a bit of space for all of my equipment. The ProRolle on the other hand are more sturdy and have more weight, but offer more room which let me tend to one of those. The ProRoller x100AW was then to small to carry everything I need whilst the ProRoller x300AW are to large for the hand-luggage-regulation. After all I settled on the ProRoller x200AW because of its size, its space and it looks just like any usual roller-case.
I ordered myself on of this cases and had it a few days later ready to pack. And let me say this: its awesome what you can pack in it!
Its size was ways smaller than I expected. Its 36x23x56 cm from the outside, which is small enough for most airlines and 33x16x51cm from the inside, which is enough to stow a lot of gear. The quality of the case is - as you would expect from Lower - perfect. It feels sturdy, the corners are protected and even the handle is covered under a lid. The zippers are very robust and feel like they can handle a lot of openings and closings. Its black outside makes it not recognizable as camera-case in the first place. And in case of rain, the case offers a rain-protection, stowed in the backside of the roller. Thats huge! The wheels seem to be pretty stable as well, as the whole case makes an really impressive impression.
As a plus you got an TSA-combination lock, so your gear is safe and the case get not cut open if the TSA would like to check something. Beside that you have room for a laptop and an outer pocket with zipper for the stuff you need more often like passport or tickets. Great for travel!
For times, and that's an option I really appreciate and made me decide towards the ProRoller-Series, you just can't carry the case, you can unzip the whole gear-compartment and have it as a backpack ready to your disposal. It's not the most comfortable backpack and I would never take it on a long hike, but for times its really comfy and a huge plus! Oh bye the way, if you have the backpack on, you still can use the roller-case as a regular case, because you will still be able to close the lid. Really genius!
A tripod can be mounted to on the side, where two adjustable straps are located.
Probably more important is what you will fit inside the case. And thats really a lot! The very flexible and easy-to-use MaxFit-System from Lowepro lets you adjust the inner protection-pads as you need it. There are in a nice grey, so you will be able to find anything inside the bag. It also comes with two little pouches that are perfect for stowing batteries, memory-cards and all the small stuff you're otherwise will always have to look for.
At the beginning I doubted that I will be able to pack all my gear in it. But the more I got in, the more positiv I was about it. After a few adjustments of the MaxFit-System I really was able to stow everything in the case!
- 2 Full-Frame-Bodys
- 5 normal lenses and 2 telephoto-lenses
- a Flash including some accessories
- Batteries (for camera and flash), battery-charger, memory-cards, cleaning-stuff and connection-cables
- one open space for a lens that I will buy in the feature ;)
For more stuff, you still have the lid that has four compartments to carry some more. They are covered with a net and transparent plastic. You're always able to see whats inside the pockets, thats great: In there I was able to stow all my filters, filterholder, step-up-rings and the remote-triggers for the cameras.
That's really impressive to have all your gear in one case safely stowed.
I only can recommend the Lowepro ProRoller x200AW. It has so many plus-points and I am so happy to be able to stow all my gear in one place, that there are almost no downsides. There is one, but thats almost logical: Fully packed it weights a lot. Really a lot and will never ever be able to pass any hand-luggage-weight-check. So it may fits from the dimensions, but if they check the wight, you're screwed up....better you don't fill it up when traveling by air. But for everything else, this small little thing is just perfect!
Now are all my lightstands, softoboxes and stuff like this lying around. I guess I have to find a solution for that as well......
If your interested what images I shoot with all the gear that's fitting into the case, please feel free to head over to my website matthiasbader.ch, to my online-shop if you would like to purchase a print or the one of the following social-media-channels.
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