How Safe Are the Peak Design Journey Backpack 30L and Digital camera Cubes?

After years of not proudly owning a digicam bag, I now have the Peak Design Journey Backpack 30L. I used it for touring due to its safety; unusually, I used to be transporting loads of costly gear. This is what I concluded about it.

I stay in a really picturesque a part of the UK, slightly fishing port referred to as Amble by a river estuary, on the coast of Northumberland. I’m about an hour’s drive from the Scottish border. Amble was once one of many little secret locations to flee to after I moved right here almost 20 years in the past, no one had heard of it. Now, it’s appeared on TV reveals and this space has been recognized as top-of-the-line locations within the UK to each stay and go to. Consequently, we get a good variety of vacationers right here and retired individuals shifting from farther south who’re in search of a quieter life and benefiting from the a lot decrease home costs.

“What has this obtained to do with images and my backpack?” I can hear you ask. Effectively, a lot of those that come right here accomplish that due to the images. You may spot them from afar as a result of they’re normally bent ahead beneath the load of their luggage in order that they resemble tortoises attempting to face upright. Their luggage are stuffed full of substances prepared to alter lenses simply in case they’ll miss a shot.

Like all over the place else, crime occurs right here, though it’s uncommon. However, digicam luggage do determine individuals as targets for crime. They promote to the world that you’re carrying costly gear.

I hardly ever carry greater than I’m going to make use of. If I’m robbed, I nonetheless would possibly lose perhaps $4,000 value of package. Nonetheless, on my current journey to Finland, unusually, I had one of the best a part of $12,000 value of kit with me. Finland is a secure nation. However, I didn’t wish to promote what I used to be carrying.

Beware Baggage Handlers

I additionally didn’t wish to entrust all of it to the bags handlers and the aircraft’s cargo maintain. Simply as nicely too, as at Schiphol Airport, they didn’t get my baggage to my connecting flight to Helsinki. One factor that involved me is that airways have gotten fussy in regards to the measurement of the cabin baggage. I’ve seen individuals have their hand baggage despatched to the aircraft’s maintain as a result of it was barely too giant, and so they have been charged for it. Moreover, not too long ago an airline modified its guidelines, and other people getting back from vacation needed to test of their luggage that had been okay for the outbound flight, and so they had been charged extortionate charges for doing so.  

Moreover, looking of the aircraft window, I may see the handlers throwing the baggage onto the conveyor belt with no look after the passengers’ possessions.

That Is Why I Traveled With a Peak Design Journey 30L Backpack

The Peak Design Travel 30L Backpack is low-key and it being a digicam bag shouldn’t be apparent.  Furthermore, it gives some very safe options.

The usual exterior dimensions are 20.9″ x 13.4″ x 7″ (53 cm x 34 cm x 18 cm), and once you unzip the enlargement part 20.9″ x 13.4″ x 7.9″ (53 cm x 34 cm x 20 cm). KLM’s most allowable measurement on the time of writing is barely bigger at 21.5” x 13.5” x 10” (55 cm x 35 cm x 25 cm.) These are the internationally agreed carry-on restrictions, however not all airways provide the identical, so do test who you’re flying with.

The Bag’s Options

The 30L title is a intelligent misnomer as that’s the common measurement between its unexpanded (27 L) and expanded (33 L) sizes; the expanded measurement continues to be okay for planes’ hand baggage.

On first inspection, it clearly has a high-quality construct. It’s rugged and suffering from a number of fabulous options which were nicely thought by way of for usability and safety. Right here follows a guided tour of the bag.

The Rear-Going through Entrance Panel

I’ve learn confusingly completely different descriptions of backpacks. Some name the aspect that faces outwards and away from you once you put on it the entrance of the bag, and a few name it the again. I am calling it the entrance panel.

On the prime is a big double-zipped padded pocket. The zips are heavy responsibility, and their pullers are connected with huge metallic rings. These are sufficiently big to connect a padlock.

Inside, that pocket is lined with a light-grey ripstop materials. In flip, it has three small open-top pockets, sufficiently big to your passport, keys, and so forth. A fourth inner pocket is zipped. That’s sufficiently big to take my giant smartphone, and it options 4 small slots and every of these will take two SD playing cards of their circumstances.

The rear-facing panel of the case additionally has 4 robust eye loops that can be utilized for attaching straps for carrying further stuff on the skin or securing the bag in a ship or canoe, utilizing the provided compression straps. Then, on the base of the panel, is a deep upside-down sleeve held closed by magnets. This might be good for carrying a cagoule, tissues, or a rain cowl for the bag, however nothing too cumbersome or heavy.

The Aspect Panels

Both sides encompasses a bolstered open pocket on the base simply giant sufficient to take the legs of a journey tripod or a water bottle. One other eye loop additional up can be utilized to connect the provided compression straps to cease the highest of the tripod from shifting. I did assume these pockets would have benefited from being slightly deeper. Nonetheless, that will have compromised the performance of the carrying deal with that every aspect additionally sports activities.

The perimeters mirror one another, which signifies that each left and right-handed individuals profit from the design when accessing their gear.

The Base Panel

That is bolstered by an additional layer of a thick, waterproof material, preferrred when sitting the bag on a moist floor. There’s one other carrying deal with down at that finish too.

The Rear Panel

A thick padded part that sits in opposition to your again makes it comfy to put on. A intelligent characteristic is the areas on both aspect of that part and the bag. These make it potential to cover the shoulder straps away. That’s a good suggestion in case you do have to test the bags into the cargo maintain as straps can get caught within the conveyer belts.

A slim Velcro-sealed pocket on the aspect is designed for a reputation and tackle label. A small ribbon loop might be used to facilitate attaching that. I noticed one overview the place that pocket was used for a bank card, however I don’t assume I’d use it for that goal because the Velcro seal is small and it might be simply accessed by a pickpocket.

In addition to the 2 shoulder straps, the again panel has one more two carrying handles and, on the base, two extra eye loops.

Carrying the Bag

The shoulder straps are nicely padded making the bag comfy to put on, even when full of 12 kilograms of substances. The strap attachments are extraordinarily robust.

The straps’ quick-release buckles didn’t slip in any respect in use and pulling the buckle upwards did launch and loosen them simply. To tighten them once more, I simply needed to pull down on the tails. I’d have most well-liked the sewn-over ends of the tails to be only a tiny bit longer to make them simpler to seize when sporting gloves.

The 2 shoulder straps might be linked by a chest strap. There is no such thing as a hip belt connected to the bag, which is a bonus when dashing round airports or carrying the bag within the trunk of a automobile the place the straps can get tangled. Nonetheless, you should buy an On a regular basis Hip Belt from Peak Design so as to add to the bag. For lengthy walks with the bag, that will be a good suggestion.

The shoulder and chest straps could be stowed away to stop getting tangled with the setting.

Regardless of the way you wish to carry that bag, there will likely be a deal with that facilitates it. In addition to the shoulder straps, there are 5 unobtrusive exterior carrying handles. The lengthy prime deal with is sufficiently big for the deal with of a curler bag provider to suit by way of.

Contained in the Bag

One factor I search for in a backpack is safe entry to the principle compartment. Years in the past, in Nairobi, I had one thing stolen from a backpack whereas I used to be sporting it. It occurred with out me noticing. The thief even zipped the bag up afterward.

Accessing the principle compartment is through a really robust double-zip that runs across the rear of the bag. These zips could be padlocked collectively. Inside it’s gentle gray, making it simple to see inside.

So much is occurring within the bag; Inside are 4 mesh pockets and webbing loops. Nonetheless, the principle compartment is an open house as a result of it’s designed to take Peak Design’s Camera Cubes and the loops are designed to safe these. There are quite a few choices for the best way to divide the compartment up utilizing the Cubes. Mel Martin wrote an excellent review of those again in October final 12 months, so I received’t go into full particulars.

I packed mine with two of the Smedium Camera Cubes, which was adequate to hold two our bodies, three lenses – together with a big telephoto – and I squeezed a gimbal in too.

Utilizing the Cubes makes the system very versatile. When you wanted to ship the backpack into the aircraft’s cargo maintain, you might take away a number of of them together with your most treasured possessions and carry them onboard into the cabin.

Cubes are provided with clips to connect them to the bag. When the bag is open, it’s mendacity on its again and the Cubes keep put anyway, however the clips would cease a thief from grabbing a dice out of your bag.

I eliminated the Cubes’ padding from the pocket within the lid. That was redundant anyway due to the ample quantity within the prime cowl of the bag.

Like the highest pocket, the bag’s principal inside is lined with a rip-stop materials and has 4 inner mesh pockets and is gentle grey.

Contained in the lid is a double sleeve that can take a 16” laptop computer and my pill.

The Peak Design Journey Backpack In Use.

I discovered the Peak Design Travel Backpack 30L comfy to put on, and the design was unobtrusive. With a cursory look, it’s not apparent it’s a digicam bag. For touring, it’s simple to make use of with confidence, and also you wouldn’t have to fumble with it to entry the contents. Showing uncertain of your self and your baggage could make you a goal for thieves.

The way in which it’s designed together with your digicam gear behind a number of layers of rip-stop nylon makes it onerous for a thief to rapidly slash by way of the bag and seize your gear. Equally, the dearth of aspect and rear openings makes it much less accessible to somebody with their eye in your precious cameras.

The Digital camera Dice inserts and the well-thought-through pockets make it simple to arrange and entry gear.

What I Preferred and What May Be Improved for Travelling Securely

Fstoppers writers have reviewed this bag and the Camera Cubes earlier than. They’ve talked about all of the environmental benefits of utilizing the Peak Design tools. So, this overview is contemplating it purely from a safety perspective.

What I Preferred

  • Robust construct.
  • Unobtrusive design, particularly the black mannequin.
  • Strong zips could be locked.
  • Plenty of carrying handles making it simple to carry.
  • Robust 400-denier nylon with a water-proof 900-denier base.
  • A number of layers assist forestall a thief from reducing by way of the material.
  • Loads of locations to cover an Air Tag.
  • House to suit 2 x Peak Design Smedium Digital camera Cubes.
  • Works with The Peak Design Travel Rain Fly, though designed for the 45-liter bag, will nonetheless match.

What May Be Improved Subsequent Time?

  • Kevlar or a metal wire within the strap would forestall the bag from being reduce from one’s shoulders.
  • Equally, a slash-proof materials in probably the most susceptible areas would give it even larger safety. Maybe a slash-proof rain cowl?
  • Stronger magnets or Velcro on the upside-down pocket would make it safer.

In Conclusion

Though I don’t use a digicam bag each day, I’ve owned them previously, together with some premium fashions, and this was higher than any of these. After I returned from Finland I did attempt it for carrying my gear round that I wasn’t going to make use of, and I discovered it comfy. For that goal although, I’d suggest the non-obligatory Hip Belt.

It may carry extra tools than I wanted. It’s additionally discrete, safe, and straightforward to make use of. I discovered this a wonderful backpack and its higher-than-average value is mirrored within the high quality. It was the right resolution for touring with loads of costly digicam gear and for many who like to hold all their tools with them.

However, sooner or later, I received’t usually be carrying as a lot digicam tools as I did on my final expedition. However the versatility of the Dice system will nonetheless make this the best bag for my cabin baggage.

The Peak Design Travel Backpack currently retails at $229.95.

The Peak Design Rain Fly cowl and the Hip Belt v2 are each retailing at $29.95.

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