Think Tank Photo (http://thinktankphoto.com) is a San Francisco based design firm specializing in camera bags founded by husband and wife team, Pulitzer Prize winner Deanne Fitzmaurice, SF Chronicle photographer Kurt Rodgers along with Doug Murdoch (former lead designer for LowePro). What makes Think Tank the latest, hottest new kids on the block is that the founders, designers, and consultants are all actual accomplished photographers. What a novel concept: design camera bags with real photographers.
I’ve heard a lot of great things about Think Tank Photo, and was in the market for another bag that can hold my 15.4″ Apple MacBook Pro along with my Canon EOS 1Ds Mark II with a lens and various other equipment in a stylish, comfortable, and unassuming bag that doesn’t scream “steal me”. As luck would have it, the Think Tank Urban Disguise (UD) 60 fit the bill.
At $190 MSRP, the bag isn’t cheap, but it is certainly worth $190. Think Tank Photo designed this bag with detail in mind, from the very precise stitching, authentic leather on the handles, to the large over sized YKK zippers, everything oozes quality.
What I Like About The UD60
- Quality and detail in one package
- Stylish design that is very professional looking
- LOTS of pockets (and secret pockets) to put equipment such as flashes, Compact Flash cards, laptop charger, two pro SLRs, and etc.
- Over-sized zippers makes me confident that if I overstuffed the bag, it won’t burst at the seams
- Everything is well laid out and easy to access
- Very comfortable shoulder strap with extreme padding for additional comfort
- LOTS of dividers
- Can comfortable hold my 15.4″ MacBook Pro or a 17″ MacBook Pro
- Place to put documents and files
- Has a way to slip bag through luggage handles
- Can convert to an fugly looking backpack with the optional shoulder harness attachment
- Comes with the Pee Wee Pixel Pocket Rocket
- Has a raincover
- Has a swivel on the shoulder strap to keep the strap from tangling
What I Don’t Like About The UD60
To ever Yin, there is a Yang:
- Cannot pack a pro SLR with lens attached
- fugly looking backpack conversion
- shoulder strap is not as thick as I would like it to be
- Velcro dividers padding aren’t as thick as I would like (but then again, if they are too thick, you couldn’t fit as much equipment)
The Urban Disguise 60 is a great shoulder bag if you are looking for something to carry you laptop and photo equipment while looking cool doing it but not attracting enough attention to get mugged. My major gripe with the bag is that I can’t pack my 1Ds Mark II with a lens attached which doesn’t do much good if you need you camera in a ready-to-shoot state. But on the other hand, for the size and what you can carry, it’s quite amazing. I can pack both my 1D and 1Ds bodies with a Canon EOS 24-105mm /f4L IS USM, a Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS USM (hood reversed), with a Canon 580EX II Speedlite, CP-E4, PocketWizard Plus II, Westcott 43″ double collapsible umbrella, 15.4″ MacBook Pro laptop, and so much more.
I highly recommend this bag as it has become my “daily commuter” bag. With the amount of equipment I carry on a daily basis, this bag ensures I have everything I need to do 90% of my photography work. One thing to note is that it will be almost impossible to find one bag (be it shoulder, sling, backpack, etc.) that fits all situations all the time. While this is my commuter bag, I also have a Pelican 1514 for when I need to bring more equipment for a different type of shoot or if I need the additional protection afforded by the solid Pelican cases. So yes, it is OK to own more than 2 3 4 camera bags.
View more pictures of the Urban Disguise 60 here.
2009-10-22 UPDATE: A testament to Think Tank Photo listening to it’s customers, check out the new Urban Disguise UD 70 Pro shoulder bag. Apparently it can now take a pro-size dSLR with 70-200mm attached! Very nice!
2009-11-26 UPDATE: Check out professional photographer Jeff Ascough’s blog thoughts on the Think Tank Urban Disguise 60 (UD 60) on his blog here.