One Camera Bag to Rule Them All!

The Problem

Do you ever wish you could pack your camera, some essential lenses, your iPad, iPhone, 15″ MacBook Pro, and other odds and ends in ONE bag?  

For me, having to pack around my tech toys and camera gear in separate bags wasn’t fun during trips–especially on flights. I searched online for hours, and tried different types of bags–but none of them ever seemed to fully meet my needs. I even bought a gigantic backpack* that fit my laptop plus my camera gear–only to discover that it doesn’t offer quick access to anything. If I’m out on a hike, and want to snap a photo, I have to take off the backpack, set it down, unzip a bunch of compartments, fish out my camera, zip it all back up, put it back on, and continue the hike. If I want to change a lens, I have to repeat the process. Too cumbersome. Other camera bags are too small to accommodate my Canon 80D with 70-200mm lens attached (which is my favorite setup). To fit my stuff in small bags, I have to detach my long lens and attach a smaller lens to my camera. Each time I get out my camera, I have to fiddle with the lenses to reattach the 70-200mm. To add to the problem, small bags mean I need a second bag for my laptop and other stuff. So not convenient. I almost gave up–figuring I’d just have to settle for “good enough”… And then I found it! The one camera bag to rule them all!

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The Solution

The masterminds at Peak Design engineered The 15″ Everyday Messenger which lets me pack my 15″ MacBook Pro, iPad, iPhone, cables, Canon 80D with battery grip and 70-200mm lens attached, and 5 other lenses, battery chargers, memory cards, etc. If you don’t need to pack around a 15” laptop like I do, they make a smaller, less expensive, 13” version*. I’ve owned various bags over the years, each with their own pros and cons.  Where other bags have fallen short, the Peak Design bag excels. Amazon reviewers rate this thing with 5-Stars!*

Cost

It’s not the cheapest camera bag at around $250, and initially, my wife vetoed me buying it because of how expensive it was. I simply reminded her that it costs far less than the sum total of her Coach purse collection—each of which were around $200. 🤣

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Build Quality

The first thing I noticed about the Everyday Messenger was its superior build quality.  Peak Design believes in it too–it’s got a lifetime guarantee! The bag “feels” different–probably due to the water resistant coating they apply to it.

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The strap is literally made out of ‘seatbelt’, and is strong yet smooth.  The buckle system makes it a breeze to shorten or extend the strap while on the go.  If I need access to the main compartment, I slide the buckle down so the bag rests on my hip, making it easier to get into. To get the bag out of my way, I just slide the buckle up–shortening the belt–and sling the bag around to my back.

The bag is thin and light–not “puffy” and “foamy” like other bags.  Don’t get me wrong–Peak Design didn’t skimp on protection. The bag is constructed with some sort of space-age, high-density material that keeps my gear well protected.

Functionality

Inside the bag are flexible, removable divider inserts that use a hook-n-latch material to stay in place.      

What makes these dividers different from others is their origami-like fold patterns—You can configure them to stand up, fold into a shelf at the half-way point, or both–depending on your needs.

On the back side of the bag is a zipper that reveals a compartment that holds my 15″ MacBook Pro, my iPad, and my iPhone–each in their own area.

Quiet Operation

I don’t want to name names, (because Canon might get mad), but I once owned a camera bag* whose top flap was secured with Velcro.  Once, while photographing a quiet, solemn, memorial ceremony, I needed to switch lenses. I unclipped the buckles, then went to open the top flap. I cringed at the ripping noise the Velcro made.  So did several of the event attendees. NOT cool.  

The top flap of the Everyday Messenger bag is secured via an amazing (and quiet) magnetic latching buckle system.  I can open the top flap and reach inside–without ANY noise whatsoever! When I need into the main compartment, but don’t want to open the flap, I quietly unzip the zipper on the top of the flap and reach inside. No need to completely open the top flap!

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Organized

I use a Canon 80D* with battery grip* and 70-200mm f/2.8 lens attached.  The main compartment is deep enough to vertically stow my camera (with long lens attached).  Alternatively, I could fold the origami-like dividers and create a “shelf” to store the camera horizontally.

The front compartment of the bag has lots of little pockets, which happen to be the same size as camera batteries and memory cards.  Some pockets have green stitching, some have red.  Why?  Dead batteries and full memory cards go in the red pockets, and fresh ones go in the green pockets.

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Conclusion

I’m super happy with this camera bag. I know it costs a bit more up front–but after trying 3 or 4 other bags that just didn’t meet my needs, this one is head and shoulders above the rest. I’ve now got a camera bag (with a lifetime guarantee) that I can use to carry my photo gear, and my 15″ MacBook Pro!  You won’t go wrong with the 15″ Everyday Messenger from Peak Design.  For more info (yes–there’s more this bag can do I didn’t tell you about), check out their YouTube video!

* As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. When I share Amazon product links, I do it for your convenience–so can quickly see pricing info, read other reviews, and check the details without wasting time having to hunt for the info. Clicking the links doesn’t cost you anything–and if you make a purchase, I earn a small commission. I’m disclosing this to you because I believe in transparency, and want to earn your trust!

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