Every now and then we stumble over an interesting Kickstarter campaign worth reporting about. The one we’re discussing here is no exception since the Alotech camera backpack seems to combine several well-thought out concepts and design approaches in one nifty product. Let’s take a closer look, shall we?
Gear. We all love it, don’t we? I do, for sure but it has to be worth the cash. Shopping around for bargains might be cool at that moment but once your cheapo gear falls apart while out and about on a job might change one’s mind… Another important aspect is how to get your precious gear safely and comfortably from A to B. At this point this new Alotech Backpack comes into play.
At first glance, this camera backpack seems to tick quite a few boxes and a lot of thought from the so-called Alotech design board (basically a community approach of discussing several aspects of the final design of the backpack) went into this.
The above video is fun to watch, at least if you’re into slightly silly jokes – and goats. But, and this is more valuable than being funny, it shows off the vast features of the backpack which are the meat and potatoes of any travel backpack, of course. Let’s break down the major ones of the Alotech bag:
- Ergonomic hip belt & back panel that follow your back’s natural curve.
- Deep ventilation channels & breathable material that run down your back
- Instantly access your batteries, memory cards and converters
- Instantly access any camera or lens with the Arca Swiss compatible lens and camera holster requiring no adapter plates
- Expandable to fit both camera gear and non-photographic gear including extra clothing, sleeping bags, food…
- Fits airline carry-on standards (when compressed)
- Dedicated waterproof compartment for a hydration bladder
Here’s another video demonstrating the capacity and compressed/expanded setups of this backpack:
What I find interesting is that the Alotech is not a camera-gear-only backpack but follows a versatile do-it-all approach. You can haul your gear and your camping stuff all in one bag. Still, the Alotech is designed with close attention to camera related needs. Multiple full-size DSLR bodies, giant lenses, adapters, it all fits effortlessly into the dedicated camera compartment which comes with a bunch of adjustable dividers.
Another design feature is the (optional) arca-swiss compatible mounting holster which distributes the weight of the attached camera and/or lens to your hips.
The backpack’s back panel matches the curvature of your spine. And this, combined with Alotech’s own contouring suspension system and ventilation approach, is supposed to be much more comfortable to carry around. Furthermore, the Alotech backpack comes in three different sizes which you can micro adjust to perfectly match your body. Alternative straps for female shooters are available, too.
To me, the Alotech ticks the most important boxes: Comfort, versatility, ruggedness. These aspects should be the main design goal for any backpack before thinking about further tweaking its feature set.
The outer shell of the Alotech is made of waterproof fabric and so are the seamed YKK zippers. On the bottom you can find a compartment for storing a rainfly and built into the straps themselves there a two meshed, yet waterproof, pockets for storing small items such as spare batteries or memory cards.
The main camera compartment takes a good amount of the available space of the backpack and you can use the supplied dividers to build your very own bag. The compartment on top of that camera/lens space is dedicated to non-gear items such as clothing and/or camping gear. A drone or tripod head will fit too, of course.
Note: When using the backpack in its fully expanded form (camera compartment plus top compartment), the Alotech bag won’t comply with carry-on specifications. It does in “compressed” form, though.
Two water bottle compartments can be found on both sides of the backpack and a tripod can be mounted on various locations around the backpack.
Pricing and Availability
The Kickstarter campaign is live and it’s running until August, 28th. At time of writing, the funding already reached 2/3 of its goal so it’s likely that this project becomes a reality.
Early bird pricing is $299, regular Kickstarter pricing is $399. After the campaign ends, the official retail price will be $450. Additional camera or lens holsters can be added for $84 ($134 after the campaign).
As always, please be aware that this is a Kickstarter campaign, not a retail store! You pay in advance and hope for the best everything progresses smoothly. If not, your pledge might be lost. If everything does work out, you’re getting a great looking backpack at a pretty cool price. Your choice. Shipping is scheduled for Feb 2020.
Link: Kickstarter campaign
What do you think? Could this be your next camera backpack? What are your specific needs when it comes to backpacks? Let us know in the comments below!