Lowepro has announced two new camera bags. The Photo Sport II series is an update to an already popular bag. It is lightweight and built for extended treks as part camera bag, part hiking pack. The Whistler series, however, takes outdoor treks very seriously for any possible occasion.
Lowepro Photo Sport II Series
The Photo Sport II series is available as the Photo Sport BP 200 AW II and 300 AW II models. Both include a new UltraCinch design that gives you side access with a custom pull-tab to tighten and stabilize the bag’s photo gear compartment with one pull.
This UltraCinch design keeps your camera gear from jostling around if you are, say, riding some rough singletrack on a mountain bike.
I’ve been using the BP 200 AW II for a couple of weeks and can attest the lighter weight and reduced size over the BP 200 AW II. It trims the fat here and there while maintaining the solid performance.
While no drastic changes have been made (if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it), things like the new ActivZone harness and back padding layout make it more comfortable and cooler to carry than its predecessor. The Photo Sport II series continues with great features like a dedicated space for a 2-liter water bladder and a full rain cover.
The water bladder isn’t included but if you have a CamelBak, you can use that or you can just buy a CamelBak replacement bladder if you want one dedicated for this bag. The shoulder straps also have elastic webbing through which to feed the bladder’s tube and bite valve.
Along with the ActivZone harness system, a padded waist-belt and top/bottom shoulder straps help you dial in the position and comfort level of the bags for a perfect fit.
The camera container portion of the BP 200 AW II seems a bit smaller than its predecessor but is still big enough for my 5D Mark II with 24-105mm f/4L lens attached and a full size flash. Of course, you can throw other gear in the top portion of the bag or just use it for snacks and hiking accessories without worrying about contaminating your camera gear.
Lowepro is marketing the BP 200 AW II toward mirrorless system users and the 300 AW II toward DSLR users. However, unless you want to just carry more gear with you, the 200 AW II will work fine for a modest DSLR kit.
While the bag may look small, you can toss a whole bunch of gear in and on this thing and it just hugs your back even when it is loaded down.
If you’re an outdoor photographer or an outdoor person who likes to carry a camera kit around, the Photo Sport II series is a great option to consider.
Lowepro Whistler Series Technical Backpacks
Also new from Lowepro is the Whistler series – available in 350 AW and 450 AW sizes and is designed as a four-season technical backpack. It is a legit, heavy-duty camera bag built to withstand the rugged outdoors in any weather situation.
The Whistler bags feature a hinged and zippered back panel that offers partial or full access to photography gear, and its rigid internal structure can support attachment of skis, poles, tripods, ice axes and more.
You can find more applications and details on the new Whistler backpacks here on Lowepro.com.
The Whistler 350 AW retails for $349.95, while the Whistler 450 AW retails for $389.95. Check them out here at B&H Photo.