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Thread: Atlas BackPacks for 4x5

  1. #1

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    Atlas BackPacks for 4x5

    has anyone tried the Atlas Adventure or Atlas Athlete backpacks for 4x5 gear? I like the way they expand around the camera insert on the outside and top for things like jackets and other non-photo gear. I think the Athlete may be a bit small. Both seem to be lacking in pockets for small stuff. I like the harness adjustability. The price is higher than I would usually pay, but my last bag survived 10 years and is not as well made, nor comfortable for long hikes.

    I carry
    4x5 Chamonix N2
    6 film holders
    5 lenses
    reflex viewer
    6 - 67mm filters in cases + step rings.
    sekonic spot meter
    loupe
    dark cloth
    small stuff - notebooks, cards, pens, tools, pocket knife, batteries
    gloves
    Adventure is worthwhile in itself. ... Never interrupt someone doing what you said couldn't be done. -- Amelia Earhart
    http://www.searing.photography

  2. #2

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    Collinsville, CT USA
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    Re: Atlas BackPacks for 4x5

    I have been using a ThinkTank backpack for some years now. Would easily hold all your gear and a bit more. Very comfortable on my back and very well balanced. Have been using a couple of ThinkTank photo backpacks for years now and they haver never failed me. The zippers are really heavy duty compared to other photo backpacks.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails 4x5bag.jpg  

  3. #3
    Xia_Ke's Avatar
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    Re: Atlas BackPacks for 4x5

    Good looking pack but, seems like it would be a tight fit with your gear list. FWIW, I've been very happy with my F-Stop Tilopa and 2 small ICUs. My standard kit is:

    Chamonix 45F1
    3 mounted lenses
    7 film holders
    plus standard peripherals (meter, cable, dark cloth, filters)

    That all fits perfectly in the ICUs and then I have enough room for rain layers, insulation (if needed), Jetboil, water filter, 2 water bottles, notebooks, etc.
    Aaron Lehoux

    My Flickr

  4. #4

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    Re: Atlas BackPacks for 4x5

    Thanks Xia_Ke, I looked at fstop bags but most reviewers didn't like the ICUs not being attached. Really interested in those who have used the Atlas bags, but they may be so new no one here has tried them yet.
    Adventure is worthwhile in itself. ... Never interrupt someone doing what you said couldn't be done. -- Amelia Earhart
    http://www.searing.photography

  5. #5
    Peter De Smidt's Avatar
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    Jan 2001
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    Fond du Lac, WI, USA
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    Re: Atlas BackPacks for 4x5

    I have a Think Tank backpack, as well as some Photobackpacker P3s. I hope I'm getting the last one right. The Think Tank is very high quality, with good materials, but it is not a hiking-style pack with an internal frame. As such, it wouldn't be very good for long hikes. The Photobackpacker is a real hiking backpack, and the Atlas looks very similar. So, I prefer my Think Tank if I'm just working out of pack, say on an architectural shoot, but for hiking the other pack is much more comfortable.
    "Poverty is the biggest cause of poverty." Rutger Bregman

  6. #6

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    Seattle Area
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    Re: Atlas BackPacks for 4x5

    I can't count the number of backpacks I've gone through. But when I go on an all day hike up in the mountains around here, I need a lot of room for other things than camera gear especially in the Fall and Winter. A backpack maxed out with only camera gear wouldn't be a hiking backpack for me.

  7. #7
    Drew Bedo's Avatar
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    Oct 2006
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    Houston Texas
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    Re: Atlas BackPacks for 4x5

    One approach is to adapt a serious hiking backpack for photography by using padded inserts. This gets you a pack designed for comfortable carry of some weight over rough ground. This was the concept behind the now discontinued line of Photobackpacker geasr.

    These backpacks were based oln a Kelty/Redwing bag and modified to hold the photo-gear boxes and pouches.
    Last edited by Drew Bedo; 29-May-2019 at 11:13.
    Drew Bedo
    http://www.artsyhome.com/author/drew-bedo




    There are only three types of mounting flanges; too big, too small and wrong thread!

  8. #8

    Join Date
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    Re: Atlas BackPacks for 4x5

    Quote Originally Posted by esearing View Post
    Thanks Xia_Ke, I looked at fstop bags but most reviewers didn't like the ICUs not being attached. Really interested in those who have used the Atlas bags, but they may be so new no one here has tried them yet.
    You can loop the ICUs to the internal frame of the F Stop bags, personally I don't do so but that's because I have two ICUs (one Pro Large and one medium shallow) that I swap out with different setups depending on what I'm shooting. The medium shallow holds my Linhof Tech, 90mm, 135mm (within the camera), 210mm, reflex finder + holders + meter, and the large is for mixed format outings.

  9. #9

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    Re: Atlas BackPacks for 4x5

    Quote Originally Posted by esearing View Post
    Thanks Xia_Ke, I looked at fstop bags but most reviewers didn't like the ICUs not being attached. Really interested in those who have used the Atlas bags, but they may be so new no one here has tried them yet.
    I actually like the ICUs not being attached. It gives you a lot of options for the same pack, especially if you have extra ICUs to swap in. Moving to a smaller ICU allows you to take less camera and more hiking gear. It also allows storing a system in an ICU and sharing the same pack between systems.

    The Atlas packs look good too. The Athlete has many of the f-stop features I like such as rear opening, but also sort of like a Lowepro with a real frame and harness. I like the looks of the waist belt system better than f-stop. Being able to size the belt to your own waist vs a one sized fits all belt is one of the features I find makes the Photobackpacker pack I use for 5x7 so nice to carry. But I'm not sure I'd like the built in camera section.

  10. #10
    Xia_Ke's Avatar
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    Re: Atlas BackPacks for 4x5

    Quote Originally Posted by esearing View Post
    Thanks Xia_Ke, I looked at fstop bags but most reviewers didn't like the ICUs not being attached. Really interested in those who have used the Atlas bags, but they may be so new no one here has tried them yet.
    As others have mentioned, the ICUs add a lot of flexibility. I personally prefer to use the attachment loops inside. They hold the ICUs pretty well in place. I have 2 smalls which I use for my 4x5 kit or smaller format gear and a large which I use for my 8x10 pinhole. The loops aren't the most convenient when you want to swap out different ICUs but it's only a 5 minute process, so not that big of a deal. Relating my experience with this bag to your current search, given your kit and wanting to use the pack for hiking, I would not even consider anything less than a 50L pack, whether that be a backpacking pack with some inserts or a purpose-built camera pack with sufficient space for hiking gear in addition to the gear compartment.
    Aaron Lehoux

    My Flickr

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