The thing is, the Slingshot 350 AW is a great bag. I really enjoyed mine, most of the time, for the full two days I had it. The Slingshot system is great because it allows you to ‘sling’ the bag from your back on to your front, so you can get easy access to your camera. When you do, it looks like this:
It has “quick release” straps to make sure your stuff doesn’t fall out, when you open it as shown in the picture above. As you can see, it’s very easy to get access to your camera from that position, take your shot, and put it back into safety.
There’s plenty of room for all most of your lenses and other stuff:
You can’t see it on the pictures, but there’s a room for a laptop as well. It fits most 15″ laptops, but the MacBook Pro 15″ unibody does not fit entirely. Once you get it in there, it’s okay, but it’s the “getting in there”-part that’s tricky. First of all, it’s very narrow, so the zipper will scratch on your laptop – if it will leave a mark, I don’t know (hopefully not), but on a plastic laptop it might. Second, because the MacBook Pro 15″ is as wide as it is, you have to maneuver it in there and apply a little bit of force. It’s okay if you’re not going to use it daily, otherwise I think it would be too annoying, pretty fast.
Another downside, my bag ended up weighing a total of 8 kg’s, including bag, camera and laptop. That’s a lot of weight on just one strap. It’s not as bad if you use the padded waist belt, but it’s still heavy on just one shoulder.
Unfortunately my bag had a fault which I didn’t notice immediately. The Slingshot 350 is based on this single strap that goes over your chest instead of two straps as with a regular backpack, that’s why the Slingshot 350 is able to sling from your back to your front, for easy access to the camera.
Once I notied that my strap had a fault – something that looks like it has been cut with a knife or something sharp – I stopped using it. I wasn’t going to risk all my stuff, in case the strap broke and the bag would drop to the floor. Luckily the shop exchanged it and I decided to upgrade to the Lowepro CompuTrekker AW instead, which I really love. Read more about my Lowepro CompuTrekker AW in a few days, when I’ll be posting that article.
Here’s how the cut on my Slingshot 350 looked like:
Bottom line – before you buy this great bag, Lowepro Slingshot 350 AW, I suggest you bring your laptop to make sure it fits easily and maybe even try to put all your gear in it, to make sure it’s not too heavy for you to walk around with.
The quality of the bag though, is great. Lowepro really makes stunning bags. I currently have the Lowepro CompuTrekker AW (as mentioned above) and the smaller Lowepro Topload Zoom 1 for when I travel light. I’m also considering the Lowepro Slingshot 100 also for light travelling but when I will be walking a lot. It’s more comfortable to have a Slingshot on your back rather than a TLZ1 in a shoulder strap.
Over to you…
What’s kind of bag do you prefer for your camera and/or laptop? An ordinary backpack, one with a shoulder strap… or a plastic bag? Let us know by leaving a comment below!