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For the last year or so I have been using a North Face backpack to carry my laptop, Canon T2i DSLR, and small accessories. This has been sufficient but I am finding that I like to keep my camera put away until I want to take a picture, then return it to the bag. This helps make me less of a target for petty thieves and less of a tourist.

I have not had a lot of luck finding a replacement so I thought I would reach out to others for suggestions. My criteria are fairly simple:

  • Ability to hold a Canon T2i DSLR
  • Ability to hold a 13-inch laptop
  • Ability to hold a few accessories (mostly chargers, a notebook, etc.)
  • Rain cover provided or at least rain cover ready
  • A small footprint – I would rather it be more compact if possible

A nice to have feature would be the backpack’s ability to hold a single change of clothing on top of the items listed above. It’s not a necessity but would definitely be nice.

Any ideas?

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  1. November 4, 2011

    My most recent purchases have been Kata and Think Tank.

    My Kata model is bigger than what you want, but has numerous small features that show great forethought. I’d look at their lineup. Camera Co-Op on Durham carried some of their line.

    The Think Tank product line is nearly as well thought out, more reasonably priced.
    Locally, Camera Exchange moops have much of the line.

    I considered a Lowe that had a component that swung around from the backpack (let’s call it a concealable fanny-pack).

  2. November 5, 2011

    My work gave me a backpack by SwissGear, which has a separate pocket for a laptop (with easy open and removal for airport scanning) and a lot of other room. I just took it to Hawaii and it worked great. It has a big pocket (separate from the laptop pocket) that can handle a big camera and a ton of places for accessories. It even has a slot for an MP3 player with easy access. Here’s a link:
    http://www.google.com/products/catalog?hl=en&rlz=1G1ACEWCENUS431&gs_upl=115l7646l0l7887l32l30l4l0l0l0l250l3619l4.20.2l26l0&q=SwissGear+laptop+backpack&um=1&ie=UTF-8&tbm=shop&cid=6144483150595799108&sa=X&ei=BY-1To7qMdHisQKyxt27Aw&ved=0CMEBEPMCMAM

    I believe this is the one.

    • Stephan Segraves #
      November 6, 2011

      Thank you both for the comments. I have looked at the Kata Digital Rucksack (DR-467). I went to Camera Co-Op and saw the smaller version (DR-465) and liked the layout. I also saw the LowePro CompuDaypack (http://products.lowepro.com/product/CompuDaypack,1922,16.htm) and it really interests me.

  3. Paul Sedillo #
    November 6, 2011

    Reasonably priced Macbook that is loaded with Adobe Lightbook, Photoshop, and Microsoft Office suite. I’m a big fan of Booq Bags: http://www.booqbags.com/ – It’s what I use to carry my laptop and camera gear. As for a camera, my go to rig for travel and everyday use is an Olympus XZ-1. Best available low light point and shoot and produces amazing images. To me carrying a DSLR is not practical for travel.

    After close to 20 years of work and personal travel, the above is what I have found works best for me. The only addition would be a high quality set of headphones.

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