First, up front, I am not a "pro packer" - although at the end of this trip I might be closer.
I'm traveling with my wife and two small children via plane to Colorado (kids are 2 and 4 - so can't carry much themselves). Currently I'm rockin' an Empire Builder for my laptop (17" MBP) and also have the Super Ego that I use sometimes for variety. Ristretto for iPad (might let my oldest use that for fun).
I'm thinking for various kid clothes, activity items, travel necessities, and backup adult clothes (if room) that an Aeronaut might be a great carry-on item. Been drooling over one of those for a while now. this seems to be a bit different scenario than most people use it for, so interested in thoughts there. This would go overhead (which might make the easy-access for kid activity stuff more difficult) but should definitely have more than enough room for what I need this trip. After that, a great bag for me to travel with when I do (not a heavy traveler right now).
The more complicated addition is that I'd like to take my Canon 7D camera kit on the trip. It currently has its own bag built specifically for the camera, but not necessarily for plane travel (Crumpler 6-million-dollar bag or something like that). It's okay but not great. The Camera I/O interests me - looks like great storage/travel and decent portability while shooting.
So the questions I'd have:
* If I get the Camera I/O, I've read that I can put it in the Aeronaut and still have room for other items. Since I'm not using the Aeronaut as my primary clothing bag (we'll be checking suitcases) this might work quite well. Initial thoughts? In this instance I'd take my SE or Empire Builder with me for my laptop.
* My other thought was to purchase a Brain Bag, which fits the I/O and use that for my laptop as well. Complication is that I don't want to purchase another Brain Cell (my current laptop will be replaced in about 2-3 weeks to a 15" MBP) so I'd need to put my horizontal Brain Cell in the BB sideways - I don't think it'll kill it for one trip. That means that I'd carry the Aeronaut for a variety of items, and the Brain Bag for my laptop and Camera - and no Empire Builder or SE. Also means the purchase of three bags instead of two (Brain Bag, Aeronaut, and I/O), so that's pretty heavy. Of course also give me a great bag for my camera stuff longer-term instead of of that Crumpler that I don't really like anyway.
Interested in some new thoughts here - as I might have tunnel vision from thinking about it too long and might be missing something. Need to order by tomorrow morning so I can have it here before departure on Thursday morning next week...
Thanks TB Community - great folks around here. One thing I'd like to mention is that I didn't even hesitate coming to TB to find bags for this trip - haven't even looked at any other bag manufacturers. Are there any?