Thursday, February 27, 2014

Lowepro Video Fastpack 350 Review

Lowepro Video FastPack 350 with the Quantaray Photo Backpack

After 20 + years with my trusty Quantaray photo backpack, I finally looked to upgrade to something modern with extra slots for video/audio extras.  The Quantaray has travelled to and around India 5 times and has made extensive trips throughout the northeastern US.  With the extra storage on top for miscellaneous items, the pack has served me really well.

Lately, I have been getting frustrated rummaging through the case for filter, batteries in the dark or even sometimes is well lit situations.  All those accessories did not have proper access slots and I finally caved an upgraded my backpack with a Lowepro Video FastPack 350.  The reason I chose the video version was because it have those extra slots I was looking for.  It was built for audio/video items, but I could also use it for my photo stuff.

The Fastpack 350 has sternum and waste straps as seen below.  This makes the loaded pack very comfortable.  When I first lifted the case with camera and gear packed, I thought it was rather heavy.  Once I put it on my back and adjusted the straps, I found it very balanced and comfortable.  It remains to be seen what effect a laptop will have on the setup.

 On one side the case has a camera entry point.  If you slit it over your right side, you will be able to quickly access your camera.  I really wished I had this on my recent New Hampshire Trip, so I did not have to offload my backpack fully onto the ground/snow.  It is a nice feature for hike and I image street shooting.  Although, for the latter I would rater use a small kit, hence a smaller bag.

On the other side there is not only a water bottle mesh pocket, but also a hidden tripod sleeve if you are inclined to carry it that way.  Again this would have been handy on my recent trip.  The shots below show the tripod pullout sleeve and mesh pocket.  Unfortunately, you cannot carry a bottle and tripod at the same time.

On the top pocket there is a removable audio pouch that can be used for not just audio items.  It Velcro's to the bottom of the top pouch.  There is also a few pockets to told an audio recorder, filter pouch, batteries...etc.  You can even put business cards, ID cards in there.  The is also a clip in the front for a headphone cable.  With all those items, you still have room to pack a small jacket or similar item and even food items.

He is a full on view of the camera compartment.  It is well padded and quite spacious.  Actually the pack has a good depth to it and you can actually stack 2 prime lenses comfortably.  On the left, even though it is quite narrow there is space for 2 Speedlights with no problem.  On the inside of the pull up flap there is space for a couple of SD/CF cards.  On the bottom of the case is a pullout rain cover.  It also adds the padding when setting the pack down.

 So far, on first use, I am quite pleased with the pack.  I will have to reserve full judgement for after a few uses in the field.  That will require a followup review.

Monday, February 24, 2014

2014 365 January update

I am adding the rest of the Jan shots here.  It would take too long to update with individual pages.

Jan 16



 Jan 19

Jan 20

Jan 21

Jan 22

Jan 23

Jan 24

Jan 25

Jan 26

Jan 27

Jan 28

Jan 29

Jan 30

Jan 31