We recently tested the up-and-coming Camera Insert on a trip to Zion and Bryce National Parks. In it, we carried a Canon 7D body, Canon 50mm f/1.4, 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5, and 70-200mm f/2.8L lenses, a Small Padded Organizer Pouch with memory cards, and a 3D Clear Organizer Cube containing a filter, battery charger, extra batteries, lens blower/brush, cleaning cloths, cleaning solution, and a remote shutter release cord.
Here’s what we carried inside of the Camera Insert. We aren’t ready to show
you the actual Camera Insert itself — yet.
The optional Tripod Bag will be available for purchase with, or separately from, the Camera Insert.
The Camera Insert fits perfectly inside either compartment of the Brain Bag, turning the Brain Bag into the ultimate laptop plus camera backpack. In addition to the Camera Insert, our Brain Bag fit a 15″ MacBook Pro inside of a Size 4Z Vertical Brain Cell, a Snake Charmer with various chargers, cables, and small accessories, an iPad in a Cache for iPad 2 (Vertical), our Gitzo travel tripod in its own protective sleeve (the sleeve will be an optional accessory for purchase with the Camera Insert and also available separately), a jacket, water bottle, plus the usual wallet, keys, etc. with more room to spare. It was a heavy load, but comfortable enough for several six mile hikes.
The Tripod Bag clips securely to the front of the Brain Bag.
What did we learn after testing the Camera Insert? That it’s close to perfect. Tom wants to use different materials here and there and tweak the padded handles, but otherwise, it will be ready for production as soon as we receive its molded foam parts designed by Tom and produced especially for us. Because the parts are a highly specialized lamination of foam and fabric, it may take up to 8-12 weeks to receive them. We’ll keep you posted; once we know when the parts will arrive at our Seattle factory, we will make the Camera Insert available for pre-order. There’s a chance some will ship before the end of the year, but we’re thinking January or February just to be safe.
The first size of Camera Insert is designed to fit the Brain Bag, Empire Builder, Super Ego, and Ego. It also fits in the middle compartment of the Tri-Star (though it will eat up some of the room of the compartments on either side of it), in the main compartment of the ID (it’s a tight fit, but it works as long as the Camera Insert isn’t overstuffed), and the main compartment of the Aeronaut.
Next Week: The Camera Insert Update: Part 2, where we take some hikes with the Camera Insert inside of the Brain Bag. You’ll see some beautiful photos that Darcy took in the Zion and Bryce Canyon backcountry, and you’ll get some straight talk from me about carrying 30+ pounds (14 kgs) of camera gear and more in a Brain Bag for two six mile (10 kilometers) hikes in high-desert sun and wind. — Tom
Being able to carry our camera gear comfortably, safely and securely encouraged us to take more photos of our trip.
Stay tuned for more next week.