I have always been gawking at ONA bags. They are really great looking and look like they can last a long time. Since getting promoted at work, I can now afford pricier items like ONA bags. Now my bag collection are as follows- Domke, Filson Magnum bag, Think Tank International v2, and now this ONA Camp's Bay bag. My Filson bag is my heavy rotation camera bag. It's very minimalist which is perfect for my weekend outings. But when it comes to shoots where I need to carry more than two lenses, with a camera body attached, it just can't. I can't carry my flash, diffusers, remotes, and other bulkier items in it. That's where this ONA bag comes in. Of course I could probably put those extra items in the think tank, but that luggage is pretty cumbersome. Each bag has its uses. My Domke is my back up back up, but also piece of Ted history. My first favorite camera bag so I am keeping that one because of it's sentimental value.
Anyway, I purchased this ONA bag on ebay since it was $100 less than ONA's site's price. Still $360 is pretty steep. So I'll get to writing about this bag.
I loaded this bag up and took it with me around Philadephia on Saturday to deliver some prints and eat some tacos. I fit in my 5D3 with 50mm attached, my sigma art 24, canon 35L, flash, ipad air 2, extra battery pack, some mints, and glasses in the bag. On my hike, it felt comfortable albeit just a little bit. It can store a laptop up to 17 inches. My MBP, that I seldomly use unless traveling, is 15 inches. It was got pretty heavy with the laptop in there.
The space inside, you can also fit in an extra camera body, a long lens like a 70-200 (attached). As I only have four lenses in total and seeming that I won't need a 70-200, the space is customizable.
With everything but the laptop, the weight of the gear felt fine in this bag. It felt very balanced. With summer approaching, hiking with this bag on will mean the back will get pretty sweaty. I wish they took a page out of biking backpacks and have a ventilated shaft in the middle of the bag to allow air to flow thru. Doesn't seem like much, but it does help a lot when you are hot and sweaty. The back is very padded and comfortable, which allows the user to pack the bag with all the gear you can fit in and not feel too weighed down.
I can't tell you, yet, how it feels on an all day hike. For outdoor hiking in the mountains, the weight dispersal might not be adequate. Hiking bags have padded waist belts for a reason, to disperse the weight and relieve the stress of the weight on the shoulders and lower back. This bag was not made for that, but if you wanted to try that I'd say be mindful of the weight you put in the bag. But for shoots, where you aren't going to be hiking around the mountains or prolonged hikes in the city, this bag is perfect in terms of weight.
This bag is made out of waxed canvas with some leather pieces sewn in. The bottom is made of leather and the straps in the front are made out of leather. Underneath the straps are quick releases, so that you can get to your gear faster. To be honest with you, I actually prefer wax canvas or tin cloth, over leather. My personal preference. The material is rugged and ages very well.
As I mentioned before, I bought this bag on ebay for $360. The price on ONA's website is $429. Definitely not cheap. What you should keep in mind, if you are able to purchase this bag, is that it is very well constructed, can fit majority of your gear while still being comfortable, and let's just get it out there... it looks great.