View Full Version : Suitable bag for 4x5?

21-Feb-2015, 05:44
Does anyone else think this looks like a good bag for 4x5?


21-Feb-2015, 06:45
Hi NoBob:

It depends upon what you will be shooting, of course. Commenting only on this bag, 5 pounds empty is a bit much. Additionally, the airline carry-on size limits are 22 x 14 x 9. If you were to run into an "anal" gate agent, this bag would not pass the size limits.

Hope that helps.


Drew Bedo
21-Feb-2015, 08:38
I am currently using an older model LowePro "Magfnum 35" which was designed and optimnized for 35mm film cameras. This is a shoulder bag that easily fits under an airline seat. My current 4x5 kit as packed in this bag:
4x5 Zone VI
90.., 150mm, 210mm lenses
6-8 film holders
BTZS hood
All the other stuff

CF tripod straps on top and is unfastened for stowing in flight.

These bags and others like it come up used on auction sites, usually for under $100, often much less. I don't think I have ever bought a camera bag brand-new.

An alternative approach is to buy the padded inserts online and adapt a piece of luggage as a less conspicuous camera bag while traveling.

Ben Calwell
21-Feb-2015, 08:51
It looks good to me for that purpose. I'm using a 20+ year old Tenba soft, satchel-type bag for my Wista, and I really like it. It's got a zip-down side panel with pockets for various stuff. I've got a bad back, so I don't like backpacks.

21-Feb-2015, 09:07
I thought it was a bit heavy, too, but the internal dimensions are big enough.

I'll look into the LowePro, thanks.

I'm not keen on using a backpack, oops, sorry, I mean rucksack, in the topics. The back gets too sweaty.

C. D. Keth
21-Feb-2015, 10:10
My whole kit, save the tripod, goes in a domke f2.

John Kasaian
22-Feb-2015, 20:08
I use an old Jansport Equinox day pack for a 5x7 Speeder. It doesn't look like a camera bag. That's a plus IMHO.

Kirk Gittings
22-Feb-2015, 21:33
Tell us more about your kit and what you carry. My 4x5 kit goes some 24 pds (5 lenses, field camera plus 8 holders etc.). No way I would put that on one shoulder for any distance. I need a backpack for such.

23-Feb-2015, 08:42
I have a Tenba PG-17C that just takes my TK 45, three lenses (Fuji 90mm, Fuji 150mm and Caltar II-N 210mm), a loop, darkcloth and two sets of bellows (standard and wide), six film holders (in a Photobackpacker case) plus cable releases. The bellows and film holder case fit nicely in the laptop compartment.

But am waiting for a Fuji 125mm to be delivered shortly, and not sure if I can fit it in...

I like that bag. It's sturdy, but not too heavy.

Drew Bedo
23-Feb-2015, 09:19
Tell us more about your kit and what you carry. My 4x5 kit goes some 24 pds (5 lenses, field camera plus 8 holders etc.). No way I would put that on one shoulder for any distance. I need a backpack for such.

The 4x5 outfit in the pictures does weigh 22-24 pounds—its a heavy bag for me. I frequently use a set of heavy duty folding luggage wheels to drag it around. My days of hiking around anywhere are long past me. I am thinking about how to modifying a golf bag cart.

23-Feb-2015, 09:22
I have several bags I use for 4x5. I've found that the main factor deciding between them is (1) how many film holders I want to bring and (2) how many lenses I want to bring and (3) whether I bring the monorail or the folding field camera. The kit can be kept fairly light (8-10lbs) or can be massively heavy (30lbs+) depending on these decisions.

I have a small shoulder bag (an old Minolta bag) that works great if I'm just packing one lens and 6 to 8 film holders. It's about 8x8x16 inches. It is very lightweight (not as well built as Lowepro) and lacks all the exterior side pockets of a Lowepro. This is a good bag for walking around if I know I only want to work with one lens.

I have a larger Lowepro shoulder bag (similar to Drew's above) that gets quite heavy but can accommodate a 4x5 field camera, three lenses and 10 film holders, but it starts to get pretty heavy for one shoulder. It works OK as long as I don't stray too far from the car. It's good for transporting gear in general, since it has a lot of pockets.

I also use a mid-size Lowepro backpack (200AW) designed for SLR's, and put the field camera in the top and the more fragile lenses in the SLR cubby-hole. This is pretty comfortable, and works well for light hiking with 1-2 lenses and 6-8 film holders.

Finally, I have a giant Lowepro backpack, the Trekker AW (not the later II version). While it lacks the improvements of the II model, it is wonderful 1990s teal green and doesn't look very important. This backpack weighs 5lbs by itself, but has tons of space for everything. I mainly use it to store and transport gear, not to go out and use it. While you could comfortably carry a lot of gear with it, I've never really felt the need to bring it along.

Drew Bedo
23-Feb-2015, 09:24
[QUOTE=NoBob;1220041 . . . .six film holders (in a Photobackpacker case) . . .


How do you like the P-B film holder case? does it work well for you?

23-Feb-2015, 10:08
I like the Photobackpacker case. It's well made, easy to use and keeps all the holders together. Each holder goes in a Ziplock bag before going in the case.

23-Feb-2015, 12:12
I'm no expert, but a couple of suggestions:

I have an older Tenba bag that was originally designed for video cameras. Must have been the VHS-C era, because with dividers too small for the old VHS camcorders. Just perfect for my 4x5, 2 lenses, film holder, meter.

Another thought is a padded soft cooler bag. May have to rig your own dividers, but doesn't scream camera and the thermal insulation can be handy.