Modern photographers need to do more than just take pictures in the field and touch them up with desktop computers—they’re often expected to clean up and share images instantly, wherever they may be. That’s why we’re excited about Incase’s new DSLR Sling Pack ($90). Like earlier Incase DSLR bag designs, there’s room for your camera and gear; now there’s also a slot that fits an 11” MacBook Air or iPad. Updated August 3, 2012 with a second round of hands-on details!
The bag is made out of a nice-looking grey heather fabric, and in trademark Incase fashion, is minimalist from the outside so that there’s no clue as to what it’s holding. Inside, it includes adjustable dividers that give you the best fit for your camera gear, plus pockets for the smaller stuff. The sling-style design makes it easy to get quick access to your camera for spur of the moment shots. Adjustable straps on the side make it easy to carry around a tripod, too.
Hands-On Update 1: We don’t say this lightly, but Incase’s DSLR Sling Pack is even better in person than we’d expected—quite possibly the ultimate MacBook Air/iPad-ready camera bag. While the outside of the bag is understated in the manner we’ve come to expect from Incase, with a long and shallow zippered pocket betraying no clues as to the contents, the interior is seriously close to perfect: just enough depth to accommodate larger DSLR zoom lenses, just enough height to hold a collection of four total lenses and a full DSLR body, and a zippered, padded compartment for the 11” Air or 9.7” iPad. Soft-lined and impressively segmented to hold everything in its own place, the DSLR Sling Pack also has a wide mesh zippered pocket for batteries and other supplies, plus really nice mesh padding on the back and arm strap. Nothing here appears to have been left undesigned or under-considered—this is as tightly engineered a hybrid bag as we’ve seen, and the best way we know of to carry a road warrior’s collection of photo and computing gear in one place. Awesome.
Hands-On Update 2: We wanted to offer this brief update after a couple of weeks of testing the DSLR Sling Pack: we love virtually everything about this bag. Even when loaded up with four lenses, a Canon 5D Mark III, an 11” MacBook Air, and a third-generation iPad—yes, it can fit all of these things—the bag was able to close securely with its side-mounted double zipper, and offered convenient access to whatever we needed while on the move. Only a single factor proved modestly inconvenient: if you plan to alternate between wearing the Sling Pack and hanging it on something, such as a cart or stroller, you’ll find hanging options somewhat limited because the external straps would have you place the bag’s key zippers and contents upside down. This is a small issue relative to all the DSLR Sling Pack does right, and we loved how its exterior design anonymizes its contents…