If you've been a visitor to my blog for a bit, you know a few secrets about me – like how I covet MAGS (Man Bags) but have only recently been able to strut them proudly in public. Thanks to some encouraging words from friends, and testosterone therapy, I can legitimately carry one anywhere without hesitation…except for maybe a Monster Truck rally, which I don't do very often anyway, so it's not a big deal.
So along comes this UNDFIND One Bag 13. It's cool, it's comfortable, it doesn't have to be girly – and it's extremely functional. And yes, it pretty much qualifies as a MAG – although it's cleverly disguised as a briefcase slash messenger bag, which we all know is completely legit for manly men to carry.
For years I have been a huge fan of Tamrac carrying bags for all of my camera and lighting gear. I think they are the toughest made, and some of the most functional bags around. I still carry the bulk of my gear in Tamrac roller bags and shoulder bags, but decided to try and use the UNDFIND bag as an "immediate access" bag at my recent wedding. I parked my Tamrac roller in a safe corner at the wedding and put only the few lenses and items I'd need on me at all times in to the UNDFIND bag and went to work.
The combination worked great for me and I felt it carried just enough stuff to give me confidence without being a hindrance to my mobility. I like to move around a lot while I shoot – climb on things, lie on the ground, do jumping jacks, etc. The bag has a cool feature where you flip the zippered edges backwards when you are actively shooting and you can dip right in to grab or stash your lenses. It is deep enough to hold my 70-200mm securely, which has always been somewhat of a dilemma.
The shoulder strap on the UNDFIND bag is gloriously comfortable and stable. That is really important to me. I hate wimpy shoulder straps and pads. C'mon now, camera gear is heavy! Spare our bodies! I love the attention to detail on the bags and the high quality hardware. It's really built to last and feels like an expensive designer bag, while avoiding the gaudy, self-obsessed, logo patterns. Although, the covers on the bag are customizable, so I guess you could create your own gaudy logo pattern if you wanted. But at least it would be yours. Having your own company logo tastefully emblazoned on the flap is actually a great idea and a nice way to brand yourself at a wedding.
What I love about the bag:
- Very comfortable to wear
- Great looking design
- Quick and easy access to gear while still providing completely security
- High quality construction and attention to detail
- Customizable cover flaps
- Holds a small computer or iPad separately from the camera gear
- Thoughtful touches like chamois material inside flap for cleaning glasses, lenses, blowing noses, etc.
- Easy to add accessory pouches to the ends of the bag for more carrying potential
- Comes with a built-in rain cover
- Single-hand carry handle hides in the back slot and tucks away when you don't need it
What I wish for:
- A wee bit larger to hold my 15" Macbook Pro (although a new One Bag 15 is in the works!)
- Single-hand carry handle could be easier to grab if you are in a hurry
- A sleek, easy access iPhone pocket that attaches to the outer accessory straps. Currently you can store your phone under the flap or in an inner compartment, but it would be nice to have this more easily accessible when the bag is zipped and closed. Note that you could probably find a suitable phone pouch to attach, but I want an UNDFIND iPHACK! (iPhone Sack).
So, I'm not giving up my Tamrac bags by any means, but this new UNDFIND bag makes a really nice complement for the location shooter who doesn't need to carry ALL their stuff on them ALL the time. It would work nicely for a shooter with limited gear or for traveling light with a few key lenses. Women might want to compare this bag to the Tamrac Aria 6.
Now, as soon as I get my custom dragon embossed cover, I'll be looking for shoes to match.