I have to write this post! I have a ThankTank Airport Addicted (no longer made) that I love as a camera backpack! I’m guessing that the closest one today is the Airport Accelerator. There are several fundamental themes as to why I love my ThinkTank products (I also have a large sling bag from them).
- They work! I have acquired and given away probably half a dozen different camera backpacks over the years. They all seemed good initially, but with a little use I found issues with each in turn. My Airport backpack from ThinkTank is the exception.
- As an ex backpacking guide, I know how a backpack should fit and feel, what works and doesn’t work for carrying weight on the back (and glass weighs a lot). The Airport backpack does a great job in meeting the backpack requirement!
- It holds lots of stuff! My sister says that there are two types of backpackers; those who only pack what they can carry, and those that pack what they want and then learn to carry it. I am of the later variety. For some trips (like when I am leading a photo day hike) I will often only fill half of it with camera gear, and then put jackets, food, water, first aid in the other half. (and that still leaves me with tripod, 500mm, 100-400, and 24-105 lens. and filters).
- Usability. Some of the camera backpacks were nothing more than large bags that required rummaging around in to find things without any padding. Others had so much padding and dividers that there was no room for anything. The Airport backpack is a great compromise between protection, space, and access. Access on some of the backpacks was very cumbersome and only place that they could be unpacked was the living room floor, not so with my Airporter.
- Incidentally nice things: It does fit in the overhead of all but the small regional jets. I have added a small carabiner to the top handle (it has handles in places to make it easy to carry as a suitcase) so that I can hang it from my tripod when things are windy (Oh, and I can still get in it).
- The second reason that I love my ThinkTank is because of how they treat their customers. Three or four years ago, after I had had the backpack for 3 or 4 years one of the plastic buckles broke. REI did not have one that would fit as a replacement after buying several and trying. So, I contacted ThinkTank and they sent me a replacement buckle free. More recently, I lost (I don’t know how) half of the belly band. I contacted ThinkTank again and they mailed a replacement half out right away along with a new buckle so that I could make sure that the buckle would match. Again at no charge. I compare this to one of the camera day packs I had that had fraying seams at the the end of a few months of use…
So, based on my two products and my experiences with ThinkTank I happily recommend their equipment ! Next time you are in the need of some type of camera related container take a look at their equipment.
PS. this blog is purely spontaneously written and is not a quid pro quo for anything from ThinkTank.
Below are some places the Airport backpack has been. The only place it was a problem were some of the tight slot canyons.