Review of The
Lowepro Fastpack 350
I recently purchased a Lowepro Fastpack 350 for a family
vacation to Tennessee. I have 2 young boys and I wanted to find a bag
that would carry all of my electronic gear on the plane with us so I
didn't have to check any expensive gear. I also wanted to have access
iPad on the plane to help keep my boys entertained for the flight.
Here's all of the gear I was able to pack into the Fastpack 350.
- Canon 30D with vertical grip
- 17-55 f/2.8
- 70-200 f/4
- Black Rapid RS-7
- DMC-Z memory card wallet full of cards
- Table top tripod
- 15” Mac Book Pro
- Portable hard drive
- All in 1 card reader
- Canon SD750 point and shoot
- iPad (in a case)
- Chargers for two phones,
iPad, computer, and both cameras
- 2 sets of headphones
- Water bottle in side pocket
- Small DVD case with movies for the kids
I was impressed with all of the stuff that fit in the bag. Although I
got it up to about 26 lbs of gear, it was still easy enough to carry
around the airport even with the kids and car seats in tow.
I like how the camera fit in better sideways. That way when
you go to grab it, it is already in the right position. It fit better
vertical rather than horizontal. I'm used to the
Slingshot style bags where the camera sits horizontal.
The waist support system was a life saver on my shoulders
and back. When the weight got to be too much I would just snug up the
waist strap and loosen the shoulder straps. Instant relief for my
shoulders. Also, the chest strap was nice because I could slide it up
and down to adjust where it pulled the straps together. With all of the
adjustments, it seemed like there was an endless variety of ways to
adjust where the weight was being directed.
It was surprisingly easy to sling the bag around under my
arm to change lenses or put away the camera. Certainly better than
having to take the bag off all of the way to switch out. It's nice to
have point and shoot attached the right side shoulder strap in front.
I couldn’t reach the water bottle very well on the side
while I was wearing the bag. Not sure if anything could be done to
improve that (longer arms maybe).
The padding on the back of the bag is comfortable enough
that I don’t notice it, which is good.
I like how you can get the camera compartment zippers
“hidden” under the flap so they don’t accidentally slide open, or
someone can’t easily get in to it when you aren’t paying attention. The
zippers are similar to the slingshot system in that the flap when
latched acts as a stopper for the zippers so you only open the bag far
enough to get the camera out.
You can see here how the camera compartment opens from the
side when you accessing the camera on the go. The zipper stops points
as shown above keep the compartment from opening up to far when you
just want to grab your camera.
The laptop slot is plenty of space for my
15” MacBook Pro and there is great rigid padding built in for the
laptop. I had zero issues with the laptop compartment.
I used the included digital accessory pouch for all of my
chargers (2 cell phones, ipad, point and shoot and SLR). It’s a nice
way to keep them all in one place.
It was comfortable to wear loaded down through the airport.
It was also very easy to pull out the iPad and
MacBook for security check points. It is carry-on compatible and even
slid under the seat in front of me on the plane when it was fully
I honestly can not think of any features that I would want
in this bag that it doesn't already have. One could argue that there
could be a
tripod holder built in, but it would be very difficult to use the bag
as it is intended with a
tripod strapped to the side or front of the bag. If I had to name one
thing I would like to have on the bag, it would be 2 compression straps
on the bottom of the bag for carrying a jacket. On the other hand, the
bag sits up very nicely by itself if you set it down on the ground. If
there were compression straps on the bottom it would probably not sit
up very well.
All in all I am very happy with this bag and I look forward
to years and years of use. I would recommend it to anyone who wants a
comfortable way to carry camera gear and a laptop plus extra gear such
as a lunch and jacket. I think it would be suitable for a day hike or
just short excursions to the zoo or playground. As you can see from the
amount of gear that I had packed in to it, you could probably carry
just about anything you would need for any type of photo opportunity
you might encounter.
I hope you find this review useful. If you have any thoughts
or questions please send us an email and I will respond. Thanks for