- Buyer's Guide
Drive By :: ONA Nylon Camps Bay Backpack
Guest post from photographer and food lover Marty Maras…
I’m a firm believer that the simpler the design of the bag, the more it can complement your style on various occasions and not stand out for the wrong reasons. The Nylon Camps Bay fits the bill perfectly as an inconspicuous, protective yet stylish camera bag.
If you haven’t heard of ONA before, they are a premium fine bags and accessories brand, founded in 2010 and based in New York City. Their bags are designed for and inspired by creative professionals, handcrafted and timeless in design.
Who It Suits
Those who admire quality, beautiful yet low-profile aesthetics and want a bag that’s made to last. It’s water resistant, lightweight and made of highly durable materials complemented by premium leathers and brass buckles – perfect for the style-conscious urban explorer’s adventures or for the daily commute. This bag can hold a lot without looking over-stuffed. When you are carrying a lot of expensive (and heavy) gear, you don’t want to draw unwanted attention using a more traditional openly branded camera bag.
Who It Doesn’t
If a quick-access slot is something you desperately need on photo shoots or events, this isn’t the bag for you. It’s made to be very secure which means quick access and an abundance of pockets is not really a feature on this style – you’ll probably have to place it down to take something out. Not ideal for harsher outdoor exploration either – it lacks the necessary straps for tripod/gear attachments and straps for further body support. Great for a brisk hike, but not for a long trek (where you may want more pockets, slots and support).
I just love how light this bag feels. It’s structured in a way that really allows the weight to be spread evenly. Loaded up with a set of full-frame gear, lenses and a laptop while trekking around a bustling city isn’t an issue – it hugs your body and you’ll feel secure.
The Camps Bay doesn’t stick out physically either. You won’t be knocking things over or getting in the way of other subway commuters, which is a big, big plus in peak hour transits.
“I just love how light this bag feels. It’s structured in a way that really allows the weight to be spread evenly.”
It fits most laptops up to 17″ and a camera with a 70-200mm mounted to the body. Pretty neat for a slim styled bag! A top-loading pocket provides access to your laptop, while an organizer pocket on the front takes care of smaller items.
Every zipper is a double zipper and the brass buckles are really well made. No issues there.
I’ve been personally after a bag like this for a long time – a low-profile bag that looks good with smart-casual and regular clothing. You can wear it with boots, skinny jeans, button shirts or t-shirts, jeans and casual shoes. It’ll match easily. Turning heads with its timeless design, no one will guess it’s a camera bag.
“It’s made to be very secure which means quick access and an abundance of pockets is not really a feature on this style – you’ll probably have to place it down to take something out.”
The bag is constructed using 1050D ballistic nylon, a synthetic weaved material. Highly durable, water-resistant and tear-resistant, it’s slightly shiny and feels a bit silky. A very nice alternative to waxed canvas that will maintain its pristine look for much longer.
“Turning heads with its timeless design, no one will guess it’s a camera bag.”
The Not So Good
The side pockets don’t stretch out which is the biggest annoyance. It may be fine for storing batteries, pens, glasses and the like, but for water bottles larger than 600ml, flashes and other larger goodies it can’t really expand to accommodate them. The fuller the internal compartment is, the harder it will be (if not near impossible) to slot an item inside.
The side straps used to adjust the length will flap around if you like to wear it high. For a bag this price, an option to make them not dangle would complete its low-profile design. It doesn’t look too bad however, as it’s all black – just a minor detail.
“The side pockets don’t stretch out which is the biggest annoyance.”
If you want a highly durable, clean, low-profile camera bag that can hold all your gear while still looking slim then look no further. The ONA Nylon Camps Bay Backpack suits most casual and even some professional settings. Being all black and timeless in design has its advantages in this regard. Just don’t expect the side pockets to hold anything substantial.