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Best Camera & Drone Bags – Review and Buying Guide 2020

Best Camera & Drone Bags – Review and Buying Guide 2020

As the owner of various drones, I have been thinking about a good bag for quite some time. Although I have the shoulder bag of the DJI Mavic Pro from the Fly More Combo, with which I can transport the DJI Mavic Air and smaller fun copters without any problems – but if I want to take my system camera with me it looks gloomy. The camera doesn’t fit in the shoulder bag and having a second one hanging around my shoulders is more than awkward. So I asked myself which bags I could put drone, accessories and my camera with interchangeable lenses in.

In this article I show discovered possibilities, mistakes and which bag I finally chose.

On the road with drone and camera

The misery started with the desire not only to take pictures with the Quadrocopter, but also to use the camera. This thought might not be alien for many pilots, because for most the Copter is only a means to an end: Beautiful pictures should be here! Especially during hikes and on vacation two separate bags are pure torture and by no means practicable. Nevertheless I don’t want to do without the drone or the camera on the way!

Now the days of drone backpacks (thank God!) are over for most of us, only DJI phantom models and Yuneec drones need one of these bulky transport cases, which were neither comfortable nor handy and seldom had enough space for additional equipment.

So for me the only possibility was to buy a small bag, in which I could put the foldable drone with remote control, 1-2 additional batteries and ND filters. In addition, my camera, the Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark II plus two interchangeable lenses and small stuff should fit in. The whole should be compact and comfortable to carry, ideally modular and able to withstand wind and weather.

My goals:

More equipment, fewer bags
High wearing comfort
Everything quickly at hand without excessive searching
The best possible quality at a fair price
Plus: Future equipment (SLR / other drone) to be just
What’s in the camera bag?
What to take with the drone? Accessories in the bag
Photo and drone equipment that should always be there.

Drone equipment

DJI Mavic Pro

remote control

1-2 additional batteries

ND filter set (6er)

Papers (flight log, insurance certificate, permit)

camera equipment

System camera/ DSLR should also be possible

2 interchangeable lenses

lens hood

Set for obejctive cleaning

Additional SD cards

Why a camera bag also makes sense for drones

Pretty fast I had shot myself in my search on camera bags. This is due to the modular construction, which is extremely advantageous: Inside the bag there are dividers that divide the camera bag into segments. The Velcro connections on the dividers can be loosened and reattached depending on the required “area sizes”. This makes them ideal for a variety of purposes: When I’m on holiday, for example, travelling with a camera and drone, I put the third part of the bag into the main bag and comfortably pack the Mavic, camera and interchangeable lens in it. If I know that I won’t need the copter, for example when walking through town, I can attach the dividers so that the camera with the zoom lens has more space.

The separators are, like the camera bag itself, sufficiently padded and protect the equipment. However, one should pay attention that one leaves as little space as possible for shaking and slipping.

Disadvantages

After a short research a first shock: Camera bags are expensive! Large models can cost more than 100 Euro, but there is a lot of air up there. However: My demands are moderate and my goal is not to buy professional equipment. The best price-performance ratio should win if the requirements are met. But I don’t want to spend more than 100 Euro!

The best camera bags (for drones) under 100 Euro
1.) Dome F-5XB
Domke F-5XB Camera Bag Test
Domke F-5XB bag (waxed).

Type: Messenger Bag
Dimensions: 2 5x 11x 18 cm
Own weight: 635 g
Inner compartments: yes
Disconnector: 3
Outer compartment: yes
Space for drone: yes
Advantages: waxed, water-repellent, high-quality, very good wearing comfort, rubber on carrying strap
Disadvantages: Wax can smear fingers & equipment in the beginning
Price: 90 Euro

2.) Manfrotto Messenger Bag
Manfrotto DSLR bag with room for UAV
Plenty of room for DSLR, lenses or drone.

Type: Messenger Bag
dimensions: 36 x 15 x 25 cm
Own weight: 581 g
Divider: 3
Inner compartments: yes
Outer compartment: yes
Space for drone: Yes, additional batteries fit in side pocket
Advantages: Space for MacBook (15”)
Disadvantages: Not waterproof
Price: 70 Euro

3.) AmazonBasics Digital SLR Camera Bag
Cheap bag for drone and camera
Plenty of space and flexibility for a low price.

Type: Messenger Bag
dimensions: 30,5 x 17,8 x 22,9 cm
Own weight: 708 g
Divider: 5
Inner compartments: yes
Outer compartment: yes
Space for drone: yes
Advantages: many dividers, very flexible system, 3 outside pockets, inexpensive
Disadvantages: Carrying strap poor, low carrying comfort, squeaks, manageable quality
Price: 30 Euro

4.) Domke F-10 camera bag
Domke F-10 bag review
Robust all-rounder for holidays & everyday life: Domek F-10 sand-coloured

Type: Messenger Bag
dimensions: 29,2 x 15,2 x 17,8 cm
Own weight: 700 g
Inner compartments: yes
Outer compartment: yes
Space for drone: yes
Advantages: high quality, large front outside pocket,
Disadvantages: comparatively high price
Price: 90 Euro

5.) Lowepro Event Messenger 150 camera bag Mica

Lowepro bag for drone & MFT camera
For accessories, the Lowepro bag is in short supply.

Type: Messenger Bag
dimensions: 34,3 x 15,8 x 26,6 cm
Own weight: 600 g
Divider: 3
Inner compartments: yes
Outer compartment: yes
Space for drone: yes
Advantages: padded tablet compartment
Disadvantages: too small for SLR cameras and many accessories
Price: 100 Euro

6.) Vanguard photo bag
Best bag for drones
The best bag for drones? Numerous compartments of the Vanguard UP-Rise II 33.

Type: Messenger Bag
dimensions: 41 x 21,9 x 34,9 cm
Own weight: 1420 g
Divider: 2
Inner compartments: yes
External compartment: yes, several
Space for drone: yes, but additional batteries come in the inner compartment
Advantages: many small outside pockets, space for 13” notebook, rain protection,
Disadvantages: for DSLR, therefore too big for smaller cameras, quite heavy
Price: 70 Euro

Decision & Test Report

At the end I decided to go for the Domke F-10. That had three reasons:

I saw the Domke F-5XB in use at my sister’s for years, used it myself several times and was very impressed by the quality of the case, the robustness and the wearing comfort, especially the non-slip rubber strap. A DSLR (EOS 5D) fits with 2 lenses, but accessories have to stay out. Also the drone.
Therefore I stayed with Domke as a manufacturer of very high quality camera bags and bought the Domke F-10 (sand). Here my system camera (MFT, Olympus OM-D M-10 Mark II) fits plus two lenses and all kinds of accessories for drone and camera.
My last name is Domke. That’s kind of cool.
Domke F-10 camera bag test report
Adjustable divider of the Domke F-10 converted to a “smartphone bag”.

After a good three months of use I can say that I have not regretted the decision to buy this bag. Whether in nature, in town or on holiday, the camera bag is always there. I particularly like the fact that it is easy to carry, which is mainly due to the compact shape and the carrying strap. The hook-and-loop fastener is still bomb-proof today (almost a bit too tight) and so far I haven’t had any negative experiences with thorns, dust and rain. The outside pocket is so big that I can store 2 Mavic batteries, remote control, lens cleaning stuff, ND filter and small stuff.

There is still enough room for lens extensions or the change to a SLR camera. Both the veteran EOS 40D and the EOS 5D fit into the bag. Close, but it fits.

If you have the problem to carry your drone and DSLR/system camera around with you, you should buy one of the bags above. In terms of space and comfort, I particularly like the Manfrotto camera bag.

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