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Domke F-5XB Shoulder and Belt Ruggedwear Bag
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- Five compartments and pockets.
- Padded main compartment lined with hook and loop material has two removable padded divider walls.
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Like your favorite pair of jeans, Domke bags get better with age and with the new Domke Ruggedwear collection you don’t have to wait. The fabric produces a unique distressed and weathered look right from the start. The Ruggedwear classic bags feature high-quality, weather-tough, durable cotton canvas that is treated with special non-solvent waxes to afford the fabric a lifelong resistance to inclement weather. The special formula allows the fabric to breathe while the waxes produce a unique, timeless, weathered, distressed patina finish. By using the included refinishing oil, bags can be restored to its original finish quickly and easily. Use this versatile carrying case as a camera bag or remove the included Gripper Shoulder strap and thread your belt (or ours, sold separately) through the tunnel for an instant waist pack. This is Ideal For: 1 SLR or rangefinder camera, 1 or 2 lenses, filters, film and accessories. Five compartments and pockets give plenty of space for all of your gear. A padded main compartment is lined with hook and loop material and has two removable padded divider walls allowing a custom fit. Exterior Dimensions: 10"W x 4.5"D x 7.25"H. Interior Dimensions: 9.5"W x 4"D x 6"H.
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The only thing I didn't like about this bag is the lack of padding on the sides. It's got sufficient padding front, bottom, and back - none on the sides and top. I added side padding by slipping in a couple of spare interior dividers from another bag (Lowepro ProTactic 450 AW Camera and Laptop Backpack (Black)) which fit beautifully. I guess I'm not too worried about the top being unpadded.
The materials are top notch, all around. The bag and strap are made of very thick, rugged canvas. The sliders and latches are all made of metal; the strap adjustment loops and zipper strips are plastic, but they seem to be very large and very tough.
The front and rear panels, the bottom, and the dividers are well padded. The small side panels are not padded, so do be aware of that. The bottom is rigid, to keep its general structure and allow it to stand on its own. The shoulder strap has a grippy material that keeps it firmly in place.
The velcro is substantial and it makes things very secure. I feel safe enough leaving the bag partially unzipped and relying on the velcro alone for quicker access. Yes, it's loud, but I'm OK with that.
I can't honestly find a single complaint, other than that it's perhaps a bit pricey. It does exactly what it says, and it just oozes quality.
I was looking for a bag specifically for traveling light with a small amount of Micro 4/3 gear, and after extensive research I was torn between this and the slightly taller (but lower volume) F-5XA. I ultimately settled on this model, and here's what I can cram in here if I'm really trying (I don't have quite this much in there for the video):
- E-P2 body with one of the lenses below mounted
- Olympus 17mm f/2.8
- Olympus 14-42mm
- Panasonic 45-200mm
- Panasonic 20mm f/1.7
- Olympus 50mm f/2 Macro with Micro 4/3 adapter mounted
- Olympus FL-14 flash
- Olympus VF1 optical viewfinder
- Olympus VF2 electronic viewfinder
- Spare battery/memory cards/filters/etc in the front pocket
In one completely absurd configuration, I've successfully fit my E-P2 mounted to the Olympus Zuiko 50-200mm f/2.8-3.5 Digital ED SWD Lens in this bag. It *just* fits, and you can use the velcro dividers to create a little pocket underneath the 50-200mm lens to store an m4/3 lens or two.
It does really make you appreciate how much smaller M4/3 is, and how different its needs are. What's for a SLR a small day bag (it'll hold my DSLR + mounted lens + 1 or 2 small extra lenses) can hold an entire M4/3 system.
*** Video errata ***
- I think I called the flash the "FL20" - it's actually the Olympus FL-14
- When talking about my DSLR in this bag, I mangled what's attached and what's not attached. A typical configuration for me is DSLR + small zoom + prime + flash (or another small zoom or prime), with one lens mounted.
*** Update 04/2011 ***
After heavily using (and abusing) this bag over the past year, the fading others have described is starting to become apparent. I'm pretty sure this is due to sun exposure, and it's most apparent on the top flap. It doesn't impact the bag's performance in any way and the faded look doesn't bother me personally (hey, it's got "character" now), but if you want to avoid this you might want to consider the tan model instead of green.
I hauled full frame DSLR around Europe for two weeks with an L zoom lens. Captured great images but I swore I'd never lug that amount of weight and bulk again on vacation. Sold it and bought a mirror less system, the FujiFilm XT-1. I love this camera and needed to get a bag to hold it with the kit zoom lens in place. I like using the lens hood for both image quality and to protect the lens .. so my goal was to find a bag that would allow the camera to be placed in it with the lens and lens hood attached.
I ordered the the three bags above. I put my new camera with the kit zoom lens with hood attached into each bag. I also put the items one would need for traveling such as a charger, spare batter, cleaning cloth, etc. All of these three bags were the perfect size. I returned the Think Tank and Domke and kept the ONA. Here are the pros and cons I found:
Think Tank - It is a boxy traditional camera bag with lots of zippered compartments. Fixed into a rectangular shape so it stuck out further from the waist when carried. Shoulder strap was very thin and would be very uncomfortable. The bag is light in weight but doesn't have a lot of padding. I liked the magnetic closure so if one was shutting a lot you could just leave the zipper open and access the camera very easily. Has a built in rain shield. Was the cheapest. It does say CAMERA. The thing I really didn't like about it was the boxy rectangular shape.
Domke - Looks nice. It was heavier than the Think Tank. Much of the added weight came from the hardware (two gigantic zippers, large strap claps). The shoulder strap was comfortable but thick. The bag flap is held closed with velcro which makes a loud noise and requires a little effort to open. Access to the inside is a opening that runs longwise along the center. One of the industrial size zippers must be slid open. The edges of the opening tend to rest together and there is a plastic zipper on the edge. So pulling the camera in and out requires a little fiddling to avoid brushing it against the zipper edges. No compartments like the Think Tank. The compartment inserts were very thin bent to one side of the other as the bag was compressed which would catch the camera when it was put into the bag. The bag is made in the USA.
ONE The Bowery - A significant disadvantage is it is over twice the price of the other two bags, even more so in the leather versions. However, it looks and feels like substantially higher quality. It is about the same weight as the Domke but has more padding. the shoulder strap is a wide and made of material like an automobile seat belt ... very comfortable. The inside is well padded and the customizable compartment inserts were thick and semi-rigid so they held their position well and did not catch the camera edges then placing the camera in the bag. The bag is designed to collapse down to become flatter around the contents, so it is far more comfortable to carry. Access is extremely easy by pressing a locking bottom clasp and simply open the flap. No zippers anywhere on this bag. A disadvantage is that there are no little hidden secure compartments for a memory card, etc. Lots of side pockets around the exterior, but they cannot be securely closed so a memory card could get lost. I simply took a small plastic box (that had a lens cleaning kit) and put it in the main compartment and that is where I put all the little parts (memory card, spare battery, etc.). It looks a little bit like a purse ... sort of. ... not really as appears to me as more masculine looking in design. My wife thinks that it looks like the "man purses" that are very common in Europe. I think it would be great for female or male photographers.
All in all, none of them are a bad bag. Any of the three would be functional. If weight mattered the most I'd get the ThInk Tank but would have to replace it with a real shoulder strap. If the ONA was out of my price range, probably I'd get the Domke. But the ONA was truly the most comfortable and had the highest quality.
Most recent customer reviews
plus a zoom fits fine- squeeze in...Read more
I used it with an Olympus EM10 MarkII, 3 additional lenses, charger, cords and other minor things.