Every week a handful of emails hit my inbox about a new backpack on Kickstarter or Indiegogo, complete with a flashy video and promises of revolutionising how I carry all my toys. I'll be the first to admit that I've been tempted to donate to quite a few of them. But it's hard to be pulled away from the Lowepro camera bags I've owned over the years. If you're a photographer, there's a good chance that at some point you've carried a DSLR and a myriad of lenses in one of Lowepro's packs. The company's spent the past 45 years coming up with ways to protect and haul camera equipment. With its new Urbex bags, the company reinvents that camera-focused legacy with a line that's focused on being the bag for all of your gadgets, and the clutter that comes with them.
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In Australia, laptop bags and backpacks are usually unreasonably expensive for the quality that you're buying — you're paying more for a brand name than you are solid construction and protection for your expensive gadgets. Belkin's first bags are less pricy than some of its own battery packs, but at the same time you're not just buying throwaway trash.
I have a bag problem. It's rivaled only by my shoes and my jacket problems. I collect the things. I throw away too much money every year on the quest for the perfect bag for travel, or every day, or evening, or conventions. I have four different bags just for lugging my camera equipment around. But I only have one backpack in regular use (the other is from high school and covered in X-Files quotes). It's specifically a backpack for cameras, and unless I need to haul a multitude of lenses around it never leaves my closet.
The nomadic lifestyle of a 3D printsmith is made all the more difficult when it comes to carrying your 3D printer from town to town. Ultimaker has heard your lamentations, though, and has come up with a solution that promises to make transporting a 3D printer a little easier: A €59.95 ($88) pair of shoulder straps.
A backpack is a great way to carry a bunch of stuff while keeping your arms free. That's why they can be a great photography accessory. The fact that it's always out of reach on your back is annoying, though. This is surely why Wolffepack has created a photography-focused pack that you can access without having to remove it.
When you think of the daily abuse that aeroplane seats have to endure, it's a minor miracle they aren't torn to shreds after just a week of air travel. The fabrics used for the upholstery must be just short of indestructible, so it makes sense to eventually recycle those materials into bags and packs that can easily survive your daily commute.
Cosplay season is in full swing, and in addition to top-notch cosplay and celebrities, attendees will also be treated to countless lines and crowded venues. To ensure you've always got a comfy place to sit and wait, Brando's got just the backpack for you.
Once a brand tailored to those who'd rather spend their weekends exploring the great outdoors than bingeing on Netflix, North Face is now creating packs designed for those who only ever hike to work. Its new Access Pack is engineered to safely carry and provide quick access to all of your gadgets. The backpack excels at that — but not much else.
We hold our backpacks to the same high standards as everything else we review and buy, and while we'd like to pick a "best backpack," we know it's impossible to make one pick that fits everyone's style, budget, body type, and carrying needs. So we've highlighted a few of our favourite laptop-backpack models and brands: bags for the workplace, a jack-of-all-trades, a weatherproof commuter, and a single bag for work and the gym.
Remember packing up your original Nintendo Entertainment System when your family visited relatives for a few days? You couldn't possibly be expected to go a few days without Punch-Out!!, but it would have been a lot easier if you had an NES built into a backpack. It's just too bad this one doesn't actually play games.
Not sure if you can pull off a full Chewbacca hoodie? This Chewbacca backpack is a nice compromise because the furry hood is detachable for those times when you're not waiting in line with hundreds of other understanding Star Wars fans.
Headed to San Diego Comic-Con this week but still haven't decided on a costume to wear? With ThinkGeek's exclusive Rocket Raccoon backpack, you're about 25 per cent of the way to an impressive Groot getup.
Since both vibranium and adamantium only exist in the comic book world, ThinkGeek had to settle on lightweight plastic to make its new Captain America Shield backpack. So it won't stop bullets or blows from mythical hammers, but it will be comfortable to carry when crammed full of textbooks and your laptop.
Unless you're just wandering off into the wilderness for a week, there's often a lot of waiting involved when travelling — whether it's for a flight, a hotel room, a taxi, or even dinner. So for all those times when you're stuck in line with no place to sit, the Bagobago might actually be the best travelling companion since it's a lightweight backpack with a compact stool built right in.