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Thread: A good backpack for a 4x5 field camera?

  1. #11

    Join Date
    Dec 2010
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    Re: A good backpack for a 4x5 field camera?

    I have two of the f.64 BPX backpacks, one for the 4x5 kit and one for the 8x10.

    These packs have a large main section, a smaller section above, and a pouch on the main section cover. It also comes with two removable film holder cases that will each carry six holders. These are very nice, with individual shoulder straps. They attach to the main pack with Velcro, or can be carried separately.

    The 4x5 Zone VI fits nicely in the pouch, with 10 lenses, dark cloth, filters/hoods/etc in the main section, and all the meters and other necessary stuff in the top.

    The 8x10 Tachihara pretty well fills up the large section of the other bag, with a reducing back in the pouch. I can fit three large lenses + minor stuff in the upper section.

    - Leigh

  2. #12
    Land-Scapegrace Heroique's Avatar
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    Nov 2008
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    Seattle, Wash.
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    2,267

    Re: A good backpack for a 4x5 field camera?

    I’ve heard good things about all the packs above.

    When I was searching for one, I chose the Kelty Redwing, whose latest incarnation is below. Many good features – my favorite is the comfortable design of the padded shoulder and waist straps. They “reduce” the weight like no other pack I tried. I’m pretty sure these packs come in two sizes. The Redwing is also quite affordable – in the $100 range – but they’ll drop down to $75 during sales and the holiday seasons.

    If you have a local retailer, it might be worth taking your LF equipment there and trying out different packs. Depending on what format you shoot, how much equipment you carry, and how far you like to hike, a pack’s design will make a lot of difference. For one person, the number & size of the pockets might be important. To another, the straps, weight, or amount of space could be more critical.

    Don’t forget the rain cover. ;^)
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Kelty Redwing.jpg  

  3. #13

    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Syracuse, NY
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    151

    Re: A good backpack for a 4x5 field camera?

    As others have mentioned, it really depends on how much gear and what setting you plan to go into. That being said, I bought one of these guys from Adorama after I bought my Shen Hao last year:
    http://www.adorama.com/GBRBK.html

    It is lightweight, but I've never felt like its missing anything; it has been rugged enough to do well on my various field documentation projects; and it is comfortable as a backpack. I'd recommend it both on quality and on price.

    Bruce

  4. #14

    Re: A good backpack for a 4x5 field camera?

    If you want to travel light on day trips then a Lowepro Mini-Trekker AW fits the bill nicely. It's just big enough for a compact 4x5 field camera and a couple of lenses and the other gear you need. It doesn't have the best harness in the world, but it's quite adequate for this rig. And you can get away with strapping on a lightweight tripod, unlike with bigger formats.

    A more complete bag with more padding and pockets is the Dakine Sequence, can easily fit the 4x5, but not too big. More expensive too.

  5. #15

    Join Date
    Nov 2010
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    727

    Re: A good backpack for a 4x5 field camera?

    I've been wondering about this too as I have a few trips coming up that will involve lots of urban travel using mass transit, and my rolling pelican case won't cut it.

    Has anyone tried the Lowepro Flipside backpacks? They have an interesting design in that they open from the back (the part that would be against the user's back).

    One thing that always bothered me about a backpack was that a zipper failure (or picking it up with the zipper not totally closed) could be catastrophic to your gear. This would be less likely with the zipper on the back. The flipside design could also prevent pilfering on a busy subway and if you put it on the ground to work out of, the straps won't be in the dirt.

    The Flipside packs are on the small side, the largest 400AW model is probably best for LF though the 300 model may work for a very compact kit (I'm looking to carry a Technika with one lens inside and two extra lenses, a few film holders and small accessories like a loupe and meter.)

  6. #16

    Re: A good backpack for a 4x5 field camera?

    Thanks everyone... so much to consider now! awesome.

  7. #17
    Scott Walker's Avatar
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    Jan 2010
    Location
    Okotoks (rural), Alberta, Canada
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    957

    Re: A good backpack for a 4x5 field camera?

    I just purchased a Tamrac Expedition 9X for MF gear. My 4x5 with film & holders, lenses, tripod etc. fit with room to spare.

  8. #18
    jadphoto
    Join Date
    Feb 2000
    Location
    Solvang, California
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    467

    Re: A good backpack for a 4x5 field camera?

    Hi All,

    I just took delivery of a Kelty Redwing 44 (2650 cc) as I have always felt my Kelty 3100 was just a smidgen too big. Basically, it wouldn't stand up in the "camera" compartment in the van.

    I am delighted. It's just that tiny bit smaller (it now fits the van compartment) but still holds everything I need when we are traveling. It easily holds: Shen Hao, four lenses, Sinar Zoom rfh, Quick Load holder and film (while my QL film stash holds out anyway), meter, filters and holder, and all those bits and pieces we seem to collect and/or think we need.

    Of course it has the same great suspension system as the other Redwings so it's very comfortable. I replaced a Lowe Pro Super Trekker with the Redwing 3100 a couple of years ago and my back hasn't quit thanking me yet.

    So, as soon as we get back from an extended trip the new pack goes off to Bruce for the zipperotomy.

    Not bragging, we'll a little maybe , but thought I'd share the info re: the smaller Kelty than the one that usually gets talked about.

    JD

  9. #19

    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Posts
    27

    Re: A good backpack for a 4x5 field camera?

    I'm curious. How do you all strap the tripod on?

    I'm looking to put together a backpack system, and I figure that I will not be able to pack the bogen 3033, unless I get an external frame pack and lash it across the bottom.

    Looks like I will have to upgrade the tripod as well.

  10. #20

    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Posts
    27

    Re: A good backpack for a 4x5 field camera?

    Quote Originally Posted by Noah A View Post
    One thing that always bothered me about a backpack was that a zipper failure (or picking it up with the zipper not totally closed) could be catastrophic to your gear.
    As I understand the concept of the photobackpacker system, there is a backer board that fits inside the pack that is lined with velcro type hooks and all the individuale cases for the camera and lenses are covered with the loop material so that you "stick" the parts in place.

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