I’ve been searching the depths of the Internet to find the perfect camera bag. I thought I’d found it just before Christmas when I posted my Christmas wishlist, but when Christmas morning rolled along and I found the bag under the tree, I couldn’t have been more disappointed. Needless to say, I returned it immediately and set out on my search once again. I decided to put the search off for a while in January, but once the bad weather was here to stay in Ithaca, I realized that it wasn’t safe to carry my camera around without a case anymore. Back to searching. Three bags later, I’ve finally found the perfect one. Which one is it you say? Well you’ll have to scroll to the bottom to find out! Now, onto my modern day version of Goldilocks and the Three Camera Cases:

Crumpler Keystone

Crumpler BagIt was huge, bulky, and so awkwardly shaped that I couldn’t even find an arrangement that allowed me to put just 3 of my lenses and the body in it. The bag was so inflexible and large that I wasn’t even willing to try to make it work. Not to mention, with a $200+ price tag, the thing should have fit my camera like a glove. There was very little interior space, and the “Keystone” name is actually quite appropriate, because it’s the shape the stabilizers form the bag into. I don’t know about you, but my camera isn’t all that triangular. Final verdict: FAIL. It was returned immediately.

Kata SB-907 Large Reporter

Kata SB-907

I thought the Kata SB-907 bag was going to be the answer to all of my troubles. Heck, it’s made by a company that also makes body armor for journalists. Can’t be too shabby, right? It was definitely sturdy and it was definitely large. When it was delivered I got a text message from Margot saying I have a package and that the box was HUGE. I didn’t think much of it, but when I opened it, it was, in fact HUGE. So huge and sturdy that I wouldn’t really doubt its ability to tote around a baby elephant. And no, that isn’t an exaggeration. It doesn’t look all that large in the picture, but that must be a 25″ laptop in that sleeve because this bag could have held a Mac Pro if the carrier were so inclined. While too large is better than too small, I don’t think I would ever have enough equipment to fill it. I could, however, use it as my one and only suitcase if I wanted to go on vacation tomorrow. Final verdict: FAIL. The return slip was printed out no more than 5 minutes after I opened the box.

Kata SB-904 Medium Reporter

Kata SB-904 outside

Six minutes after I opened the SB-907, I ordered the SB-904. The “medium” bag. I was kind of frightened at what this company’s interpretation of medium is, but I decided to take a chance. The next day (yes, I’m THAT impatient), my new bag was here and the box was noticeably smaller. Phew. So far so good. Upon opening it, it was as if the chorus started singing and light was emitting from it. Finally, a camera bag designed for a CAMERA! Whoda thought it? Though this bag doesn’t have the laptop holder, it wasn’t really much of a Kata SB-904 inside selling point for me in the first place. I rarely find myself carrying around my laptop AND my camera bag. That’s just too much of a liability. This bag holds all of my current equipment with some room to grow. It’s the perfect size, the inside is an awesomely bright yellow, and it’s damn near indestructible (or so it seems). I’d say it was well worth the wait. I’ve only taken it out for a spin once so far, but I couldn’t be happier. Not to mention, it was significantly cheaper than my original choice in the Crumpler. Huzzah!! This one is juuussstt right! Final verdict: SCORE!