A regular old camera bag is fine for regular old photography, but what if you are headed out on an adventure? What if you are taking your camera and gear somewhere where there is water, ice and other environmental hazards just waiting to claim your camera’s last shot? That’s where Lowepro’s new DryZone line of camera bags comes in.
The DryZone line consists of the DryZone Backpack 40L, The DryZone Duffle 20L and the DryZone 200. And while the Backpack 40L and Duffle 20L are IPX6-rated the Backpack 40L ups the game and offers an IPX7 rating making it “the world’s first waterproof, soft-sided camera backpack—like a drysuit for your gear!”
Lowepro sent one of the DryZone Duffle 20L camera bags for review, so lets take a look at it on camera and then dig a bit more deeply into its features.
As noted, the DryZone Duffle 20L has a waterproof rating of IPX6. It fits:
A Pro DSLR with attached lens (up to 70-200mm)
1-2 extra lenses
A flash, accessories and personal items at a recommended split of 80% gear and 20% personal items
The bags internal dimensions are 16.34 x 9.25 x 6.30″ and it weighs in at just 2.64 lbs.
This isn’t a camera bag you are going to wear, but if you don’t mind carrying your gear, and you need to extra protection the DryZone line of bags offers, it may serve you quite well. As LowPro notes,
Outdoor photographers and watersport enthusiasts who document their adventures will appreciate this lightweight, technical and durable design that keep camera and personal gear high and dry.
A rating of IPX-6 means the DryZone Duffle 20L is splash-proof and will protect the gear inside if a stream of high-pressure water is directed toward it. This is accomplished thanks to a design that sees a flexible interior camera bag set inside a water-tight shell.
To ensure the contents are splash-proof – something that is especially important if you are taking your camera gear on a boat, kayak or raft – the inner bag is placed into the shell and then the shell must be folded over itself a minimum of three times and the side buckles secured.
In addition to the side release buckles the duffle features grab handles, zipper pulls and an easy-to-grab carry handle. Daisy chain webbing loops on either side of a small pocket let you quickly, easily and safely secure items to the duffle. In that way the Lowepro DryZone Duffle 20L doesn’t just protect the gear inside the bag, it helps protect the gear outside of it too.
If you are an adventure photographer or are planning a trip that includes a lot of water, the DryZone Duffle 20L may be just the thing for you. While it isn’t a waterproof bag, it will keep the contents dry so long as you properly roll the top and don’t try to actually submerge the bag in water. The ability to remove the interior camera compartment and use it as an independent camera bag is a nice feature, but it introduces my one big issue with this product — getting the inner bag out of the shell and back into it is a time-consuming and challenging process. It isn’t a huge issue if you don’t plan on separating and then reconnecting the two on a frequent basis, but it is something about which anyone considering this bag should be aware. After all, that bit of inconvenience is a small price to pay for keeping your expensive camera gear safe and protected. You can learn more and order yours here.
What I Like: Waterproof material offers IPX6-rated protection; Inner bag can be used as a separate camera bag; Gear space can be organized to meet your needs; Quality material and good build-quality
What Needs Improvement: Challenging to separate and replace the inner bag from the outer shell
Source: Manufacturer supplied review sample