Lowepro CompuDay Photo 250 Backpack Review

Early on in my photography career I was like most people and tried to save money by buying cheap gear like camera bags by buying cheap bags off eBay. The problem was that they never lasted very long. One 30 dollar backpack had one of the straps tear off the first time I used it. After going through this several times I finally figured out that you really do get what you pay for and that good quality bags can actually save you money in the end. While I had heard good things about Lowepro bags, and I had never got a chance to check one out until recently. The bag I got to try out has the awkward name of CompuDay Photo 250. While the name may not tell you what it is, the Photo 250 is a basic backpack for easy handling of a small set of camera gear along with a laptop computer.

Lowepro CompuDay Photo 250

Here is my personal dilemma…I want to carry my camera with me much more often but I always carry too much gear when what I really need is a body, a 24-70, a 70-200, a flash, and a modifier or two. I have tried messenger bags and other backpacks but they never really “did it” for me as they were either too heavy, too small, or wouldn’t organize things well.  The folks at Lowepro suggested I give the CompuDay Photo 250 a try and see if it addresses the issues I have had with other backpacks.

Specifications

Capacity: 
Compact DSLR with kit lens attached; up to a 15.6†widescreen laptop; accessories; personal items

Size(Interior):
11.4W X 4.7D X 15.4H in./
29 X 12 X 39 cm
Size(Exterior):
12.6W X 7.9D X 17.1H in./
32 X 20 X 43.5 cm
Camera Compartment Inner Dimensions:
6.7W X 4.5D X 11H in./
17 X 11.5 X 28 cm
Notebook Compartment Inner Dimensions:
11.4W X 4.7D X 15.4H in./
29 X 12 X 39 cm
Front Compartment Inner Dimensions:
8.7W X .6D X 12.6H in./
21 X .5 X 32 cm
Outer fabric:
600D Polyester 420 Nylon nailhead 840D/50t Nylon 1680 Ballistic Nylon Polyester stretch mesh
Interior Fabric:
210 D nylon Polyester stretch mesh Brushed tricot polyester

Using the CompuDay Photo 250

I figure the best way to discuss the CompuDay Photo 250 is to go through the list of issues I normally have and see how the CompuDay Photo 250 stacks up against the rest.

Size

The CompuDay Photo 250 is a small backpack for short hikes or daily carry-around use. Unlike some other bags that are basically small all-purpose camera bags with straps on them. This means less room for gear, but that’s kind of the point. For a nice bag just big enough for a few components, the CompuDay Photo 250 fits the bill quite nicely.

Weight

The empty bag is quite light so it’s much more about your gear and you don’t feel like you are lugging around a heavy bag as well.

Organization

There are lots of pockets and sleeves to help keep your stuff organized but the main storage section is really just a big open space but it is big enough for a DSLR and a lens or two. I really like the external access to the lens pocket which means you can swap lenses without having to dig through the main compartment. This is a nice win for the Photo 250.

Quality

The build quality of the Photo 250 is top-notch. I have nothing negative to say about the build quality at all.

Price

At $99 list price and a current street price of $74.95 at B & H Photo, the CompuDay 250 is reasonably prices for a backpack with these features and quality.

Results

I didn’t really know what to expect from the Lowepro CompuDay Photo 250 as my experience with backpacks in the past has not been overly positive. I really have to say that I actually like the CompuDay Photo 250 quite a bit. When I travel, it makes a nice carry-on bag for my laptop, basic camera gear, and electronic accessories, around town I can keep my camera with me for fast, easy access without bogging me down with my normally excessive gear packing. At the current street price, it’s not going to break the bank and will make for a nice size back for those photowalks, short hikes, and other times I want to be hands free. The only thing I wish it had was a divider in the main compartment to aid in the organization of a lens or two but that is getting a little nit picky.

If you are looking for a good quality backpack at a really good price, it would be hard to do much better than the Lowepro CompuDay 250.

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