Customer Review

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars So Much to Like But Issues, April 27, 2014
This review is from: Case Logic DSS-103 Luminosity Large Sling Backpack (Black) (Electronics)
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Last month I reviewed Case Logic's DSB split pack backpack. I love it, but now see some limitations with it.

Here is my review of the DSB. "Case Logic knows how to make cases. I do not think I have ever given one of their cases less than 4 stars. Recently I have reviewed other camera backpacks and gadget bags, and this tops all of them. I reviewed the Lowepro Fast Pack 250w and the Amazon Basics large DSLR bag. This blows both of them out of the water.

Basically this is a combo bag and pack. Unlike the Lowepro which has a separate space under it that is side loading, this separate case at the bottom is top loading just like a gadget bag. This ensures that the camera does not fall out. And it is not awkward getting to the gear. Unzip the top of the bag and you have access to a roomy gadget bag. It also has a curved support so the camera, with lens attached, does not rest on the bottom. You have to put this pack down on the ground, table or other support to access the bottom compartment as the top hinges off. You will want the support as with any good sized bag, but I suppose one could just swing the bag around while it is on the body and get out the gear.

The top compartment can store personal items as there is so much room in in the bottom gear bag to store lots of equipment. The front pocket can fit an iPad and possibly a netbook or Mac Air.

I recently took this on an airplane and it fits well under the seat. Case Logic tends to make their roomy bags with a more narrow and compact design than Lowepro. I really appreciate getting rid of the bulk. As a woman, the straps do not cut into my underarms as some backpacks do. They are curved so this does not happen. At 4 lbs without gear, it does get a little heavy, but the chest strap and waist strap alleviate some of the weight. This is a car trip or air trip bag for me, not a hiking photo pack as it does weigh 20 plus pounds loaded.

My recent trip had the following contents:
In the bottom section:
a D7100 with 85mm and reversed hood attached in the middle, a 18-300 lens and my new Sony attachable smartphone lens on the right side, a sensor dust blower, various chargers, a canon close up lens on the left side. I could have added my Hoodman Loupe and 400 speedlight flash too. Each side had a soft cushioned attached cover to prevent the gear from falling out(except if you turned it over as they do not have any closure straps). The bag has three slots for SD cards but my second Sony battery, which is slim, fit in one slot. Under the top compartment is a velcro pocket for my plastic rain lens cover and microfiber cloths.

The top section:

Portable charger, cell phone in an inside pocket, 2 Nikon batteries, pen, highlighter, small notepad, 2 prs of glasses, snacks, business card case and it was not even half full. Very easy to access and find things too with two interior pockets that zip.

The front pocket stored my iPad Air, the Kensington keyboard for it, a magazine and my billfold plus travel docs.

I did not carry a tripod ,but it has straps with rubber that hold the tripod close to the side of the pack.

The back of the pack is well padded to protect the camera and the user's back.

The other side of the case has a pouch that has the rain pouch for the pack. It attaches to a velcro tether so it cannot be dropped easily and lost.

The only pouch the case does not have is one for a water bottle. I can only surmise that Case Logic does not want us to spill any water and ruin our gear!

I see lots of action for this highly recommended gear back pack."

I repeat this review because the pockets are somewhat similar especially the main compartment. While the packs are similar, the one in this review is a sling and DSB is a back pack. I will comment on this last as it is the main reason i knocked off a star.

This pack's compartments are superior to the DSB. There are more compartments. they make better sense for a photographer's gear and accessories. There is a slim pocket for phone, pen, papers and wallet. On the side are two stacked pockets for filters and other accessories. Every pocket has some padding. Also on the side is the compartment for a DSLR. My DSLR, a D7100, had an 18-300 lens attached and it fit easily. This compartment is similar to the DSB split pack, but in a better location.
The top compartment rather than being one deep one is two smaller ones stacked. Again this makes better sense for organizing. My chargers went in the top one with keys in the a zippered pocket. The larger one fit a pouch of extra batteries and other accessories that i call my photo 'To go" pack.

The rain bonnet for the bag is one the bottom where most other packs have them. The DSB's was on the side. Not really a show stopper either way, just makes more sense.

What I really like about this pack is that it does not split, a common new feature with photo bags. Because it does not split, it has a full pocket in back for an iPad or laptop. This is what I have been wanting in all of the other packs I reviewed. I also like that the main DSLR compartment is on the side . Easy to access at all times.

So in wrapping up, all of the pockets were superior to the DSB, but yet I deducted a star. They made this pack a sling, but with two straps. At about 3 plus pounds without my gear and a whopping 17 lbs with my gear, I, as a 5'3" woman, cannot carry it as a sling. It is way too heavy. So they did include another strap to convert it to a backpack. The problem here is that the sling is wider than the second strap and more substantial. Because of this unevenness, I cannot walk long distances with this pack. The wider strap digs into my underarm. The DSB as a backpack with waist straps and a chest strap take the weight off.

Now if Case Logic could design this bag as a backpack, they would have the perfect bag!
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4.3 out of 5 stars (31 customer reviews)
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Location: Columbia, MD

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