Most helpful critical review
18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
Poor Zipper, Under-padded Strap
on September 5, 2013
Size-wise, this is the perfect bag. I wanted something as small as possible but still able to hold my DSLR and a few lenses for all-day hikes and vacation sight-seeing. I have a full-size Lowepro backpack that holds everything I own. It's built like a tank, but it's up around 40lbs now and it's just too heavy for actual hiking. Most of the sling bags available are too big for an all day hike and they look like hipster diaper bags. This bag is perfect in it's discrete look (doesn't scream "come steal my gear") and it's ease of carry. I can fit my Canon EOS 650 with 50mm attached, an 18-135mm, a 24mm fisheye, a 100mm macro, cleaning gear, batteries, filters, fast strap, and assorted odds and ends.
The zipper on the main compartment is the big problem. It's low quality with very fine teeth and it will pull apart / separate / misfeed. Obviously, you don't want this happening when you have several thousands of dollars of gear in there. Amazon really needs to spend a few extra dollars and put a nice beefy zipper on this. I don't see a lot of other reviewers complaining about the zipper and because I haven't abused my bag, or overstuffed it to the point of asking too much from the zipper, I have to think they just aren't using their bags often or for any length of time. It appears to be a design flaw, and not a matter of quality control. I don't think I just got one with a bad zipper - the chosen zipper is just not a good one. The strap is under-padded. Not a big deal until you really pack the thing full. Get some heavy glass in there and you'll start to feel it after a few hours. The little memory card holder pockets in the main compartment lid are useless. The secondary strap that secures the bag across your chest is too narrow and can become uncomfortable. Tripod harness is kinda useless too. I've been using it to hold a rolled up jacket or poncho, and the zippered pocket that hides the bottom cup for spare battery storage.
If Amazon fixed these issues (and even if they needed to up the price $10 to do it), I would give it five stars. Even at $40 it would be an unbeatable deal. I would have given it four stars until the zipper problem developed after a few months of use. With the zipper situation, I've lost confidence in it, and can't get in and out quickly. I feel I have to take great care each time I close the main compartment and triple check that the zipper worked. My plan is to keep looking for a similarly sized bag, probably a more pricey brand name, to replace this one. Unless you're on an extremely tight budget, my advice would be to spend more money and get something better quality. Pay attention to zippers and strap padding and don't get tunnel vision on the inside compartment arrangement. If you do take a chance on this, I would scotchguard it, as it has no rain cover and it will absorb water and get soggy if you get caught in a downpour.