A camera bag protects and organizes a digital camera and related accessories. It should be durable and comfortable to carry when filled.
At a minimum, the bag should hold a camera, an extra battery and memory card and lens cleaning tissue. If you use a lens adapter, external flash or converter lenses, there should be room for them too.
Camera bag styles
Camera bags come in a variety of styles and shapes: backpack, pouch, holster and shoulder. There are even bags that are designed to hold a laptop as well as your equipment. If you have heavy photo equipment, consider a camera case with wheels similar to those found on luggage.
Vertical bags do not move or swing around as much as horizontal ones.
Many manufacturers make camera bags designed specifically for digital cameras, both compact and digital single reflex cameras. They have extra pockets or pouches for accessories such as memory cards and batteries.
If you live in a hot climate, avoid buying a black or very dark camera bag that absorbs heat more than lighter colored ones. Excessive heat can damage a digital camera, batteries and other photographic equipment.
Desirable camera bag features
When shopping for a camera bag for a digital camera, get one of quality that offers both comfort and durability.
A camera bag should have enough room, pockets and compartments for batteries, memory cards and any other accessories you normally carry.
- main compartment with shock-absorbing, interior padding
- front pockets
- dividers within the bag, preferably movable, to prevent equipment from bumping into or scratching each other
- inner and/or outer mesh pockets for small accessories
- molded carrying handle
- wide, padded, non-slip shoulder strap
- removable, quick-release shoulder strap
- water-resistant or waterproof (one with an integrated waterproof cover is ideal); some bags are air tight
- self-healing exterior zippers
- non-skid rubber feet
- belt loops
- separate, detachable accessory pouch that can be used as a stand-alone storage bag for small lenses or a water bottle
- loop or other method of attaching a tripod
Camera bags and the Digital Single Lens Reflex camera user
In addition to features outlined above, make sure your camera bag is large enough if you’re a DSLR user. The bag should be able to hold your DSLR with its lens attached. It should also have room for other lenses and equipment, such as an external flash, that you carry at any give time.
User friendly camera bag
The camera bag should be user friendly too. If it fits all your equipment but is crammed, it can be difficult to use out in the field, especially when you want to exchange the lenses on the camera for one in the bag. You need some extra room to place the lens back into the bag before taking out another lens.
A camera bag is one of the most important camera accessories you can own, so shop carefully. Get one that will not only protect your gear, but will serve you well when taking photos with the camera bag at your side.