Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Lowepro Stealth Reporter 200AW Review

Few photo companies make better products that are used real photographers than Lowepro. They also listen to their customers - when I complained that their old website had too few pics, they added tons of pics in their new website with different views of the product. Other cos, like Crumpler, are fad products that look good but fade away fast as they are just not usable in the field. I really dont like Crumpler's websites as well. Look at my previous post to see why I sold my Crumpler.

What is a Stealth Reporter (im gonna call it SR from now on) you may ask? Its a stealthy bag that is typically used by reporters since it is so light and fits in so much gear. ok, it is fairly obvious that this is a camera bag, but it doesnt scream - steal me like a Crumpler (to crumpler addicts - cmon guys, stop kidding yourself - it is fairly obvious a crumpler is a camera bag carried by a loaded person). The AW designation means this bag is All Weather and comes with a light grey (hmm 18% grey??) rain proof cover that can at least make sure your gear stays dry until u sprint to the nearest cover.

My SR is the 200 version - its the middle brother in the series - there is a 100, 300, and 400 as well. Its a nice size for a shoulder bag - you can fit in a decent amount of gear - i can fit a single SLR (e.g. D70 with 12-24mm), a spare lens (85mm or 50mm), flash (SB800 or 22s), blower and mini tripod. any more and my shoulder would hurt anyway. The SR is a fairly secure bag. The top flap is fastened to the bag using a single plastic qliklock so it is fast and quiet to take your gear in and out. the middle of the top flap has a zipper so you can reach in and grab your gear wo opening the flap. I dont use this feature as the opening is rather small on the 200 model. The SR comes with a nice shoulder strap and and is lightly padded - there are the usual foam dividers in the bag to partition your gear. The foam isnt as thick as Crumpler but it is adequate and the advantage is you can squeeze more stuff inside compared to crumplers.