We design camera and lens backpacks for photographers that are durable, stylish, water-resistant and feature easy side access functionality. Whether you're looking for travel backpacks to protect your laptop, tablet and other devices; or a videographer with audio equipment — we've got you covered!
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How to Pick the Best Camera Bag
At Sunny 16, we know that photographers need the best camera backpacks that can safely carry expensive cameras and accessories. Whether you're looking to fit a compact camera and a few lenses in an everyday bag; or two camera bodies and multiple lenses in a spacious hiking camera backpack (or even travel-friendly knapsacks); we've got you covered. Our best camera bag carrying cases feature dedicated pockets for photography gear, side access zippers and more features. When picking a photography backpack, there's a set of criteria that you'll need to look into before purchasing.
What is the Best Camera Backpack?
The best camera backpack should combine the features of a hiking camera bag and a travel backpack. It should be the appropriate size, well organized, spacious, comfortable and extremely durable.
The Benefits of Camera Bags
When you purchase a camera and lens kit, they'll often come in their own carrying case — however, this is very different than a DSLR camera backpack designed to safely carry your camera gear — but also allows you to freely move around when traveling or shooting on the go. The best camera bags will feature sternum straps and waist straps to evenly distribute the weight while maintaining the protection that more photo backpacks should have. When searching for a camera backpack for women and men, you'll want to find one that is lightweight (<3lbs) and spacious. In addition to this, some photography backpacks also feature a laptop and tablet sleeve so you can shoot and edit on the go. A key feature, that is sometimes missed in photo bags, is an easy side access zipper so you can conveniently grab your camera gear even faster.
How to Choose the Best Camera and Lens Backpack
When it's time to search for a camera backpack for your cameras and lenses, it's important to look at the size and capacity of the photography bag. If you have a DSLR or mirrorless camera system with multiple lenses and accessories, then you'll need a camera bag that is large enough (and safe) to hold your equipment. You'll also need to make sure that there is thick padding to protect your expensive gear from any bumps and drops.
Furthermore, you'll need to select a camera backpack that have a laptop sleeve, anti-theft opening back panel, lockable zippers for security, multiple organization methods, removable dividers, hidden pockets and a luggage passthrough if you're traveling often. There should also be a water bottle pocket (or for your tripod or monopod), side access zipper for your camera, and tons of pockets for your smaller accessories like batteries, microfiber cleaning cloths, cables, cleaning kit and other essentials.
If you're a wildlife photographers, you'll most likely need to look for a hiking camera backpack. These photo bags can carry your camera gear and other personal items. If you need a padded DSLR camera backpack, take a look at the Voyager camera bag.
Camera Backpack Materials
As you start your search for camera backpacks, you'll start noticing different types of materials used. Everything from waxed canvas, nylon, tarpaulin, and even leather. If you're looking for a tear-proof photography bag, go for waxed canvas. If waterproof or water-resistant materials are important, we suggest either tarpaulin or nylon. Leather backpacks are great options if you're looking for a stylish fashion camera bag. At it's core, you'll need to find the right fit for you. If it rains a lot near you (or if you travel a lot), then a water-resistant camera bag would be very important.
The ideal camera backpack size will vary based on the type of traveling you'll be doing. On average, a 30-35L should be a good size that will be a good carry-on size bag when traveling and will have enough space for atleast a weekend. If your clothes are lightweight and you're using packing cubes, it will allow you to fit a lot of stuff! If you're a minimalist photography, the 30L backpack size would be enough.
A camera backpack must have anti-theft functionality, similar to a suitcase. For example, it should feature a back panel opening with zipper locks so that your gear is always safe when you're traveling abroad.
Secondly, you'll want a bag that has top access, side access and back access. This will make grabbing your gear a lot easier when you're on the move.
Clamshell opening backpacks are important as well so it makes it easy to pack and unpack (different than a hiking camera bag).
At its core, you should be able to see all your stuff at once and everything should be within reach.
Comfort & Quality
The ideal camera backpack should feature the comfort and durability of a hiking camera backpack. Lightweight, high-quality materials and travel-friendly.
Comfort is really critical. Similar to a hiking camera backpack, you'll want to look at these bags closely because they've set the standard if you're carrying a ton of gear while stay retaining the comfort.
Similarly, your camera bag needs to be just as comfortable as your hiking backpack! The suspension system is very important in a good camera bag.
Things to lookout for is strong yet cushioned shoulder straps for the weight. You'll want something that molds to your shoulders, not go against it! The same idea is applied to the back panel—make sure there's thick mesh padding!
Secondly, you'll need to make sure it comes with an adjustable sternum strap to help keep the weight balanced and so the shoulder straps don't constantly move around while you're walking or hiking.
The really important thing is in the hip belt. A well-padded waist strap will move about 80% of the weight of your backpack from your shoulders onto your hips. This way, your legs will be carrying the load more than your shoulders so that you avoid any back, neck or shoulder pain.
Lastly, you'll need to find a bag that is extremely durable like a good hiking backpack. It should feature water-resistant material and handle outdoor weather — along with high-quality zippers and buckles.
Sunny 16 Camera Backpacks
After experiencing the shortcomings of old camera backpacks, our mission was to create the best camera backpack for photographers.
We spent years designing bags — which led to the Voyager camera bag.
The Voyager features anti-theft functionality like a back-panel opening zipper, lockable zippers and features side access for your gear—and tons of pockets for your essential everyday items in even more pockets. You can fit your laptop, water bottle, tripod, battery pack, chargers, cables, and even more.
For the ultimate comfort, you can adjust the shoulder strap length to fit your height—then adjust the sternum strap to balance the weight—and then attach the waist straps to distribute the weight for easier movement. It will literally feel like you're carrying nothing! The water-resistant and waterproof material will protect your gear and personal items from harsh outdoor weather conditions and changes. The padded laptop compartment will keep your computer dry and separate from the rest of your belongings. You even have an extra pocket for your tablet or notebook!
The zippers can be locked for even more security with our TSA-approved zipper locks. Our backpacks and accessories have traveled around the world to over 90+ countries.
If you're a photographers, whether you're a professional or hobbyist—our gear was made for you.