With the recent purchase of my Olympus e-pl5 camera and with my around the world trip looming I have been left with the need for a very specific camera bag. One that will carry my new gear around in a practical, comfortable, and sexy way as well as having extra room for my travel blogging tools. Traveling around the world is presenting me with a few packing challenges so having the right camera bag is key. It must double as a messenger bag for carrying my Surface tablet, notebooks, and other accessories needed for travel writing on the go as well as being small enough to comfortably carry around for a full day of sightseeing and camera snapping.
Enter the Lowepro Event Messenger. This incredibly functional camera bag includes all the features one would want or need for shooting on the go. It comes in 3 sizes – the 250, 150, & 100 or large, medium and small – and two colors – Mica (think moss green) and black. For my needs and purpose I tested out the 150 in Mica and the 100 in black.
The Lowepro Event Messenger 150
First up is the Lowepro Event Messenger 150 Medium Shoulder Camera Bag with Tablet Compartment in mossy (Mica) green. Love the color. Inside it has space for a full sized DSLR body with attached lens as well as 2-3 extra lenses along with all your accessories. In in my case it easily fits all three of my mirror less camera lenses plus my Fisheye Lens adapter – although I could use a little more room for day to day stuff. It has quick access Velcro straps which is a must for getting in and out of the bag in a pinch and the front pockets offer more than enough room for your spare batteries, spare cards, and other accessories. The interchangeable walls inside the bag make it easy to customize the layout for to fit your needs although in my case the default set up works just great.
What sets this bag apart from the smaller 100 series bag is the tablet pocket which is designed to fit up to a full-sized iPad. In my case my Microsoft Surface RT (32GB) fits snugly in there.
On The Go
Although the bag is a bit boxy and bulky it is surprisingly light. After four hours of use my shoulders could hardly tell it had been bearing the load of my gear. With the Velcro straps engaged for quick access, getting in and out of the bag to change lenses was very easy. Overall I was very impressed with this experience and use of the bag.
The Lowepro Event Messenger 100
I took the smaller Lowepro Event Messenger 100 Shoulder Camera Bag out for a test run while in Bellingham. Although I was looking for a small bag for daytime shooting, this guy might be a little too small. Although it is designed to fit a compact DLSR body (like my Olympus E-pl5) and 2-3 lenses, with some reconfiguration I was able to squeeze all of my lenses (3 plus a fisheye adapter) into this case. This however made getting in and out of the bag a little challenging which of course is my bad for pushing the bag beyond what it was designed for. I would not recommend more than 3 lenses in this bag as noted by Lowepro
The features inside the Lowepro Event Messenger 100 are identical to the Event Messenger 150 – the pockets, velcro straps, space for accessories etc…minus the pocket for your tablet. Naturally it is lighter than the medium and just as unnoticeable on. I am not crazy about the color and do prefer the Mica green over the black and red. This black bag is retro but not in a good way. Think Kit from Night Rider.
What I liked:
- Velcro for quick access
- Color (green on the Event Messenger 150)
What I didn’t like:
- Overall boxy shape
- Color (black on the Event Messenger 100)
In the end for my current need these bags are just a tad too small and too bulky. The Event Messenger 150 for use as a working bag plus camera bag needs to be a bit bigger for my use and the small is a little too small for my day camera bag. Go figure. I could pare down the lenses that I use on the go but I like to have options. I want it all. 🙂
Update: I did end up bringing the Lowepro Event Messenger 100 Small Shoulder Camera Bag with me around the world and am happy to report that it worked very well as a day camera bag and for switching out lenses on the go. I am VERY glad I brought it as it was light weight and practical. Not as stylish as I would like but functional and aided in me getting some great pictures.
Make no mistake, the Lowepro Event Messenger 150 Medium Shoulder Camera Bag with Tablet Compartment is a great bag and is high-quality built. It is incredibly light weight and of all the bags I have tested so far, it is the least harmful to my shoulders and back. I will absolutely continue to use it as a day bag around Vancouver but not for use around the world.
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Although I was provided the Event Messenger bags from Lowepro
to review, the experience, opinions, and words are my own.