The Camera I-O (Insert-Outsert) is designed to help you carry your DSLR body, several lenses, an external flash, and accessories. Originally conceived as a padded insert to be added to our Brain Bag backpack (the Camera I-O also fits in the Empire Builder and Aeronaut 45), we've added features so it can also be used as a great, stand-alone, shoot-from-the-hip photo bag.
The front and back of the Camera I-O are made of .25" / 6 mm thick closed-cell foam laminated to an exterior of Durastretch 520Q (a nylon/Cordura®/Lycra® blend) and an interior of hook-compatible brushed tricot. The sides and bottom are 1000 denier Cordura® lined with the same .25" / 6 mm foam and brushed tricot.
Included with the Camera I-O are four padded dividers designed to allow you to optimize and organize the space inside the bag based on what gear you will carry. The dividers are padded with .25" closed-cell foam with an exterior of bright silver 500 denier Cordura® to help you more easily see all that black camera gear inside the bag, and they attach to the interior walls of the Camera I-O with ubiquitous hook/loop fasteners. The smaller two dividers are simple rectangles, pretty much similar in function to the myriad of padded dividers one gets with any camera bag these days — use them to create smaller padded cubbies within the I-O for lenses, flashes, etc. The two tall dividers are a bit different than you might expect, with three unique features: first, when positioned within the I-O, their wedge shape creates some slack at the top so that when you need to flex the sides and open the I-O from the top, you won't tear the hook and loop fasteners apart; second, they are designed so that you can fold the bottom ends up, allowing you to create a shorter compartment either suspended from the top or dropped down to the bottom of the I-O; last, these dividers have padded dog-ears at the top that flop over to protect your lenses (or whatever you put in there). Again, the interior of the Camera I-O is hook-compatible material, so that you can use dividers from other manufacturers as well.
Also included with the Camera I-O is a padded, removable lid system. When traveling from location to location with the Camera I-O inside our Brain Bag or other bag, the lid system is a great way to add an extra level of protection for your gear; when using the I-O on its own, the lids will help keep dust, dirt, and light precipitation out. The lid system consists of two separate lids, both made of black 500 denier Cordura® and padded with .25" / 6 mm closed-cell foam. The two lids fold over one another like the top of a cereal box and secure with four points of Aplix® hook and loop; the hook and loop closures are positioned diagonally and only engage (or overlap) at their vertices, so the lid stays shut but it doesn't take much effort to open it. The position of the hook and loop fasteners allows them to engage when the lids are at any angle and even when the I-O is bulged and overfilled. If you require quicker and/or silent access to your gear, you can simply flop the two lids down in the opposite order and the hook and loop won't engage at all. Alternately, you may choose to remove the lids entirely — they use 1" wide Aplix® to attach to the inside upper edge of the I-O.
Using the Camera I-O as an Insert: The Camera I-O keeps your photo gear organized and protected inside another bag as you travel; it features the same webbing loops on its back as our Brain Cell laptop case, allowing you to clip it securely inside either compartment of our Brain Bag, or in the main compartment of our Empire Builder. (The Camera I-O will also fit inside the main compartment of the Aeronaut 45 but it won't clip in.) And, of course, you can use the Camera I-O inside any non-TOM BIHN bag big enough to accommodate it. The Camera I-O features comfortable PORON® foam padded handles so you can get a good grip when you're pulling it out of another bag. (While the Camera I-O is well padded, we do not recommend using it inside a bag you might be required to "check" for airline travel, not that you would. Right? Didn't think so.)
Using the Camera I-O as an Outsert: The Camera I-O's PORON® foam padded handles allow you to carry the bag comfortably. Shoulder strap attachment points — designed by Tom, custom-molded for us in Georgia (United States, not the other one), and tested to 250 pounds (each) — allow you to clip on the optional Standard or Absolute Shoulder Straps. Carry a travel tripod or lighting gear? Down the sides and across the bottom of the I-O is a daisy chain of 1" nylon webbing, allowing you to use Annex Clips to attach one or more of our Tripod - Lighting Kit Quivers, which are available in two sizes: 360 mm ($40) and 520 mm ($45). The Quivers can be clipped to the sides or bottom of the Camera I-O, carried on their own with an optional shoulder strap, or packed inside a larger bag. We call them "Quivers" because Tom's brother Dan, who helped develop the Camera I-O, works out of the bags as he's shooting, pulling out his lighting gear or tripod like it's The Hunger Games. The Tripod - Lighting Kit Quivers are made out of our U.S. made, 1050 denier, high tenacity ballistic nylon fabric and feature a Halcyon®/nylon drawstring top cuff that folds down out of the way — the top edges are stiffened with hard plastic piping so that they stay open for easy access, and the bottoms are padded.
Sewn in Seattle
Our bags are designed and sewn right here in Seattle, Washington, U.S.A.
That allows us to be control freaks in the best way possible; we have direct control and oversight of the quality of our materials, our products, and the jobs and working environment that we help create. It also offers us a unique spontaneity: when we have an idea for a new product or accessory, we can design it, figure out how to build it, add it to our website and be ready to ship it out our front door all within just a few weeks. How cool is that?
Intrigued? You can find out more about the unusual way we do business on our Company Philosophy page.
THE BIHN Guarantee
Everything you buy from us here at TOM BIHN is satisfaction guaranteed. We’ve been in business since 1972 and we stand behind what we make.
If something goes wrong and it's our fault, we'll fix it for free. Repairs due to normal wear and tear or due to other things that are not our fault will be performed, when possible, at a reasonable charge right here in our Seattle factory where your bag was made. Defects in materials or workmanship are uncommon and almost always evident while the product is still new. Keep in mind that bags and packs are often subject to extreme wear in everyday use: do not expect them to last forever. Only true love lasts forever! You can expect a TOM BIHN product to give years and years of hard service.