The 12 Best Camera Bag Brands

the best camera bag

If you’re a budding photographer you’ll know that one of the difficulties with going out and getting the perfect shot is the logistical aspect of getting the camera there. A camera is a delicate and often expensive piece of kit and taking care of it is important. Carrying the camera on a strap around your neck can get uncomfortable, and if you’re traveling it can make you look a bit ‘touristy.’ The solution to this problem is a camera bag to hold you camera safely. In this article we’ll give you a round-up of 12 of the best camera bags on the market at the moment.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some questions you may have about camera bags and how to find the best camera bag for you.

1. What Is a Camera Bag?

A camera bag is a bag made specifically for transporting your camera. It is different from a camera case, which is generally a fitted case which encases your camera to protect it from bumps. A camera case will not have any space in it for carrying extra lenses, batteries or memory cards.

2. Why Buy a Camera Bag?

A camera bag doesn’t just hold your camera. The best camera bags will have compartments for all your camera gear and accessories. Additionally, carrying a camera bag can be more comfortable than simply carrying your camera on the strap around your next.

3. What Types of Camera Bags Are There? 

Most camera bags fall into several categories: shoulder bags, backpacks, slings bags, and camera holsters. Some of these bags have a very utilitarian, practical look, but others are designed to look just like ordinary bags so that nobody will be able to tell that you’re carrying a camera.

4. Where Can You Buy a Camera Bag?

Camera bags can be bought from specialist camera shops and often from the larger department stores. If you find a particular camera bag that you like, it may be available from large online retailers like Amazon, or from the website of the manufacturer.

5. What Is the Best Camera Bag?

Camera bags can be bought from specialist camera shops and often from the larger department stores. If you find a particular camera bag that you like, it may be available from large online retailers like Amazon, or from the website of the manufacturer.

How We Reviewed

Endurax Waterproof Camera Backpack for Women and Men Fits 15.6 Laptop with Build-in DSLR Shoulder Photographer Bag (Gray)

We have compiled a list of camera bags of various styles available at various price points. We then reviewed them based on the parameters of their features, pros & cons, and price range, and have provided information on where to buy each. In writing our “Best of,” we also took into account the views of current users of the camera bags.

Overall Price Range of Camera Bags

The prices of camera bags vary depending a various factors. For the higher-priced models, expect better quality materials, better stitching on straps, and better organized room for spare batteries, cards, and lenses.

What We Reviewed

  • 1ONA – The Union Street – Camera Messenger Bag
  • 2Vanguard Alta Sky 51D Backpack
  • 3Peak Design Everyday Sling 5L (Black Camera Bag)
  • 4Manfrotto MB MA-BP-R Advanced Rear Backpack
  • 5Domke F-2 Original Shoulder Bag 700-02D
  • 6Billingham Hadley Pro Camera Bag
  • 7Lowepro Streetline SL 140 Camera Messenger Bag
  • 8Peak Design 15″ Everyday Messenger Bag v1
  • 9S-ZONE Vintage Canvas Messenger Bag
  • 10WANDRD Hexad Access Travel Duffel Bag
  • 11Pelican 1510 Case with Foam
  • 12Lowepro m-Trekker SH 150 Shoulder Bag

1. ONA - The Union Street - Camera Messenger Bag

ONA - The Union Street - Camera Messenger Bag - Black Waxed Canvas (ONA5-003BL)

  • Leather detail and base
  • Antique brass hardware
  • Handcrafted with premium waxed canvas
  • Exterior dimensions: 16.5"L X 11"H X 5"D
  • Room for a camera and up to three lenses

Key features of this product include a waxed canvas exterior to protect your camera from water and leather detailing and base. This messenger bag can be worn over one shoulder or across the body and has the advantage of not looking like a camera bag. The ONA bag has room for a camera and up to four lenses. It also has a padded laptop sleeve. However, the narrow strap could be uncomfortable.

PROS

  • Stylish gray exterior with leather details
  • Room for four lenses
  • Padded laptop section

CONS

  • Narrow Strap 
  • Expensive

2. ?Vanguard Alta Sky 51D Backpack

VANGUARD Alta Sky 51D Camera Backpack for Sony, Nikon, Canon, DSLR, Drones, Grey, AltaSky51D

  • Well organized – numerous dedicated pockets, organizers and connectors for all essentials and stay hydrated - large water bottle side pockets
  • Business oriented - holds a 15" laptop and/or tablet and stay steady - optimal balance tripod carrying system
  • Ultimate versatility - 100% gear to 100% personal and anywhere in between. Adapts to perfectly fit photo gear, video gear, drones and gimbals (larger drones attach externally), laptop, and tripod
  • Multi-access quick-action - full rear opening, side and top access and separate opening to individual, spacious lower compartment
  • Includes total coverage rain cover, sturdy divider kit and multi-connection straps; Clutter free - stowable connector straps

Key features of this product include a large interior with separate padded compartments that can hold 2 DSLRs with lenses attached, as well as 4 or more lenses, a flash, and other accessories. There is also a padded sleeve for a 15″ laptop. This backpack has a padded back and wide padded straps: ideal if you’re going to be carrying a lot of cameras and accessories all day. The internal dividers can also be removed, allowing the backpack to be used to carry clothes and other items as a versatile weekend bag.

PROS

  • Superb padding
  • Large capacity
  • Removable internal dividers
  • Removable rain cover

CONS

  • No compartments in waist-belt
  • Could get very heavy if fully loaded

3. ?Peak Design Everyday Sling 5L (Black Camera Bag)

Peak Design Everyday Sling 5L (Black Camera Bag)

  • Protective tablet sleeve (Max Tablet Capacity: 24 cm (9.4”) x 18.5 cm (7.3”) x 1.5 cm (0.6”). (NOT iPad Pro)
  • Convertible, reversible strap for cross-body sling and fanny pack/waist bag carry.
  • Weatherproof 400D nylon canvas shell camera bag sling. Soft, durable cotton/poly twill interior.
  • Camera bag inserts organize drone kits, mirrorless/SLR camera kit, or a DSLR camera and accessories.
  • 2 stretchy inner side pockets,1 external pocket, and 2 FlexFold dividers for organization.

Key features of this product include space for a DSLR with lens and a quick-pull strap adjustment system. The bag can be worn either as a sling, or as a waist bag. Inside the bag there are many pockets in order to help you organize your camera accessories. This bag is ideal for those looking for a small day-bag for their camera, and it packs flat when empty to save on space.

PROS

  • Packs flat
  • Lots of pockets
  • Padded tablet sleeve
  • Weatherproof shell

CONS

  • Small

4. Manfrotto MB MA-BP-R Advanced Rear Backpack

Manfrotto MB MA-BP-R Advanced Rear Backpack (Black)

  • The lower part of the bag is dedicated to the photographic equipment and safely holds a professional DSLR camera body with up to 3 lenses thanks to the renowned Manfrotto Protection System including a 70-200mm lens
  • This bag features a side extendable pocket which can fit travel sized tripods such as the BeFree
  • Designed in Italy
  • Front Compartment can comfortably store a 13” laptop, 10” tablet, small book and all of your necessary documents.

Key features of this product include a two section construction and access system. This enables users to access cameras in the bottom compartment of the backpack without disturbing the contents of the top section of the backpack. Some users reported that if you have a very large DSLR, it will not fit in the lower compartment without some adjustment, so if you have a large camera, this may not be the best camera bag for you.

PROS

  • Two-way access construction
  • Good for mirrorless camera users
  • Anti theft zippers
  • Plastic “feet” on bottom of bag

CONS

  • Small internal space
  • Minimal internal padding
  • Back opening design can be inconvenient

5. ?Domke F-2 Original Shoulder Bag 700-02D

Domke F-2 original shoulder bag 700-02D (Olive) for Canon, Nikon, Sony, Leica, Fujifilm & Olympus DSLR or Mirrorless Cameras with Space for Multiple Lenses Up to 300mm and Accessories

  • Proudly Made in USA from tough and durable 100 percent cotton canvas
  • Removable padded bottom stiffener and hand carrying strap for moving the back at quick Notice
  • 12 compartments and pockets which Includes a patented padded, adjustable & removable 4 compartment insert system
  • Adjustable non slip Gripper Strap securing the Bag to Your shoulder comfortably while Travelling or in use
  • Ideal for two digital Cameras with or without Motor drives, Multiple lenses up to 300 millimeter, flash unit & Small Tablet computer

Key features of this product include an internal space large enough to fit two cameras, 6-10 lenses, a flash unit, 10-20 rolls of film, and accessories. The bag does not look overtly like a camera bag, and the firmly padded internal compartments can be removed if users wish to use it as an ordinary bag. The unobtrusive olive color does not draw attention to the bag, but is a nice alternative to black. We recommend this to serious photographers who want to carry a lot of gear with them, but don’t want to look like they are doing so.

PROS

  • Versatile
  • Large capacity
  • Well padded removable internal compartments

CONS

  • Some of the fittings are plastic rather than metal
  • Water resistant not waterproof

6. ??Billingham Hadley Pro Camera Bag

Billingham Hadley Pro Camera Bag (Black with Black Trim)

  • Compatible with optional AVEA pockets; Quick-release system allows you easy-access to your gear
  • Exterior Dimensions - 13.8 x 4.8 x 11.0",Interior Dimensions - 13.4 x 3.1 x 10.6", Dual front pockets: 5.1 - 6.7 x 1.6 - 2.4 x 7.9", Rear zip pocket: 12.6 x 8.7"Inches
  • Removable camera insert secures with a single press stud inside the main compartment
  • Interior top divider on camera insert shields your gear from rain or snow
  • Holds DSLR & Lens, 70-200mm, Flash

Key features of this product include a securable inner camera compartment, and a quick-release top flap. Fiberglass reinforcement ensures the safety of your gear when in transit, and the bag is suitable for use as a carry-on, so you won’t have to be separated from it when you’re traveling. This camera bag is ideal if you want quick access to your camera and the space to store a few extras in the bag.

PROS

  • Quick release top flap allows easy access
  • Lots of space inside
  • Fiberglass shell

CONS

  • Shoulder strap has no pad
  • Shoulder strap cannot be detached

7. ???Lowepro Streetline SL 140 Camera Messenger Bag

Streetline SL 140, Lowepro, Digital Camera Accessories, Black (LP36945-PWW)

  • As a photo bag, the SL 140 fits things like a mirrorless camera, plus several small items you need for the day
  • 11"" laptop and tablet (like iPad)
  • StreetLine 140 is a sophisticated sling bag that offers a stylish, protective and efficient way to carry your laptop, tablet and personal equipment 11-inch across urban streets and public transportation
  • The urban style and protective sling bag is designed to protect a 11-inch laptop and tablet, plus a variety of equipment, including a camera
  • As a day bag, SL 140 fits things like a smartphone, wallet, keys, light jacket, passport, sunglasses, headphones and other small items

Key features of this product include a compact style suitable for day-carry and a multitude of pockets to help you organize your gear and accessories. This messenger-style camera bag is ideal for those who want quick access to their camera on the go during the day.

PROS

  • Compact
  • Folds flat when not in use
  • Fits a small tablet
  • Cool gray color

CONS

  • Carrying strap difficult to make comfortable

8. ????Peak Design 15 Everyday Messenger Bag V1

Peak Design 15" Everyday Messenger Bag v1 - Charcoal

  • Peak Design Camera Bag Lifetime Warranty: Guaranteed.
  • Peak Messenger 15" Max Capacity/Volume: 8 L min to 18 L max.
  • Padded Laptop Sleeve fits a 15" MacBook Pro laptop; 15" screen size.
  • Everyday Messenger Bag Padding: camera divider inserts for a DSLR camera, 3 lenses, and accessories.
  • Weatherproof and DWR-coated shell protects laptops and camera equipment.

Key features of this product include space for a full-frame DSLR and up to 3 lenses, and a built in tripod-carry feature that works with nearly all tripods. One-handed opening and a secure MagLatch should provide the ideal combination of easy access for the user and security against potential theft.

However, some users report their bags came undone at unexpected times and that this caused their cameras to fall out.

PROS

  • Cool looking shoulder bag available in 3 colors
  • Tripod-carry feature
  • Good build quality

CONS

  • Special latch feature unreliable
  • Bag does not stand upright when on ground

9. ?????S-ZONE Vintage Canvas Messenger Bag

S-ZONE Vintage Camera Messenger Bag Leather Canvas DSLR Shoulder Crossbody Bag

  • It can used both as a camera bag and a messenger bag(taking out the inner case). Thick & Soft enough to against damages, dust and scratches.
  • Material: Waterproof Canvas + Crazy Horse Leather Trim. This DSLR camera messenger bag safety protects your camera and accessories. It was special design for digital photojournalists, sports photographers, and amateur photographer.
  • This camera bag comes with extra pockets for memory cards, business cards, CDs, cellphone, wallet etc.
  • Size:14.2*12.2*4.7 inch Weight: 2.6 lbs;Convenient and Light for your outdoor shooting.
  • Large Capacity: Designed for DSLR Digital Camera, like Sony, Canon, Nikon, Olympus. Plenty room for 1 x D/SLR + 1-2 x extra lenses + accessories. And there are self adhering padded dividers for you to DIY your camera space.

Key features of this product include space for a DSLR and a couple of extra lenses and a special shock-absorbant padding inside the bag. There are a number of additional pockets in which users can keep extra gear, wallet, passport, and other essentials. As with many messenger style camera bags, the internal liner is removable so you can use the bag even when you’re not taking your camera out.

PROS

  • Economical
  • Comes in a range of colors
  • Removable, shock-absorbing liner

CONS

  • Water resistant rather than waterproof
  • Won’t fit more than one camera.

10. ??????WANDRD Hexad Access Travel Duffel Bag

HEXAD Access 45L Duffel Bag - Travel Duffel Bag with Multiple Compartments for Organization (Black)

  • WANDRD - Our mission is simple. Create products that inspire people to get out and live passionate lives; exploring, creating, and living life in the moment.
  • FEATURES - The HEXAD Access Duffel features a clamshell opening that gives you complete access to the 3 large compartments inside the bag.
  • TRAVEL - Whether you are using it for photography or not, this is the perfect travel bag for those who want a little more organization.
  • DESIGN - The HEXAD Duffel series was designed to go where no duffels have gone before.
  • COMPATIBLE - The two bottom compartments were designed to be compatible with our existing Camera Cubes, turning this into our largest photo bag yet.

The key feature of this product includes an unusual duffel bag style with a clamshell design. This allows you to pack one half of the duffel with clothes and other items and pack the other half with your camera, lenses, and gear. The WANDRD Hexad is designed for travelers and will fit into the overhead bins of all airlines. If you’ll be doing a lot of traveling and only want to carry one bag, then this may be the best camera bag for you.

PROS

  • Good build quality
  • Carry-on suitable
  • Different sections for organization

CONS

  • WANDRD camera cubes must be purchased separately
  • Expensive

11. ???????Pelican 1510 Case with Foam

Pelican 1510 Case With Foam (Black)

  • FAA maximum carry on size
  • Easy open double throw latches cover, O-Ring seal and a automatic pressure equalization valve.
  • Lifetime guarantee of excellence. Exterior (L x w x d): 22.00" X 13.81" X 9.00" (55.9 x 35.1 x 22.9 cm). Interior (L×W×D)-19.75 x 11.00 x 7.60 inches. Padlock Hole Diameter-5/16 inch. PURGE VENT: 3 Micron Hydrophobic Non-Woven.
  • Open cell core with solid wall design to make a strong yet lightweight travel case
  • Watertight, Crush-Proof and dust-proof. Lid depth:  1.79" (4.5 cm); bottom depth: 5.79" (14.7 cm); total depth: 7.58" (19.3 cm)

This product features a hard shell which is watertight, crush-proof, and dust-proof. The foam inner is lightweight yet firm to make sure that your cameras and lenses are kept safe in transit. This is the case for the hardcore traveling photographer to get gear from point A to point B.

PROS

  • Carry-on suitable
  • Wheeled
  • Comes with a lifetime guarantee

CONS

  • Small interior
  • Latches pop open unexpectedly

12. Lowepro m-Trekker SH 150 Shoulder Bag

Lowepro m-Trekker SH 150 Shoulder Bag, Charcoal Grey

  • Zippered Main Compartment
  • Dedicated Interior Pouch for Memory Card
  • Holds a Mirrorless Camera, Lens & Tablet
  • Front Flap with Dual Buckle Closure
  • Padded Interior Dividers

Key features of this product include a well-padded interior and a shoulder strap. The bag also has plenty of pockets and space for a full-frame DSLR and a few accessories but not much more, so if you want to carry a lot of extra lenses this isn’t the best camera bag for you. However, if you want a well-made day-bag and only have one camera, you’ll love the lightness of the bag and the comfortable strap.

PROS

  • Strong build
  • Lots of pockets
  • Comfortable shoulder strap
  • Doesn’t look like a camera bag

CONS

  • Only space for one camera

PRODUCT

IMAGE

Price

ONA - The Union Street - Camera Messenger Bag

ONA - The Union Street - Camera Messenger Bag - Black Waxed Canvas (ONA5-003BL)

Buy on Amazon

Vanguard Alta Sky 51D Backpack

VANGUARD Alta Sky 51D Camera Backpack for Sony, Nikon, Canon, DSLR, Drones, Grey, AltaSky51D

Buy on Amazon

?Peak Design Everyday Sling 5L (Black Camera Bag)

Peak Design Everyday Sling 5L (Black Camera Bag)

Buy on Amazon

Manfrotto MB MA-BP-R Advanced Rear Backpack

Manfrotto MB MA-BP-R Advanced Rear Backpack (Black)

Buy on Amazon

Domke F-2 Original Shoulder Bag 700-02D

Domke F-2 original shoulder bag 700-02D (Olive) for Canon, Nikon, Sony, Leica, Fujifilm & Olympus DSLR or Mirrorless Cameras with Space for Multiple Lenses Up to 300mm and Accessories

Buy on Amazon

Billingham Hadley Pro Camera Bag

Billingham Hadley Pro Camera Bag (Black with Black Trim)

Buy on Amazon

Lowepro Streetline SL 140 Camera Messenger Bag

Streetline SL 140, Lowepro, Digital Camera Accessories, Black (LP36945-PWW)

Buy on Amazon

Peak Design 15 Everyday Messenger Bag V1

Peak Design 15' Everyday Messenger Bag v1 - Charcoal

Buy on Amazon

S-ZONE Vintage Canvas Messenger Bag

S-ZONE Vintage Camera Messenger Bag Leather Canvas DSLR Shoulder Crossbody Bag

Buy on Amazon

WANDRD Hexad Access Travel Duffel Bag

HEXAD Access 45L Duffel Bag - Travel Duffel Bag with Multiple Compartments for Organization (Black)

Buy on Amazon

Pelican 1510 Case with Foam

Pelican 1510 Case With Foam (Black)

Buy on Amazon

Lowepro m-Trekker SH 150 Shoulder Bag

Lowepro m-Trekker SH 150 Shoulder Bag, Charcoal Grey

Buy on Amazon

The Verdict

Though all bags we reviewed had many qualities to recommend them, we have picked out three that were especially good. The best camera bag for those looking for a shoulder or messenger bag is the Domke F-2 Original Shoulder Bag 700-02D, for its great padding, quality, and versatility. The best camera bag for those on a budget is undoubtedly the S-ZONE Vintage Canvas Messenger Bag, which came in at only $40 but is still a good quality, useful camera bag.

The best camera bag for those looking for a backpack, and also our overall best bag, is the Vanguard Alta Sky 51D Backpack. Indeed the Vanguard was so well-reviewed by satisfied customers that it was hard to find any drawbacks.

Leave a Comment