The Short Story
I was looking for a more discrete camera bag for travel, exploring cities, and photo-walking. I ended up picking up the Think Tank Retrospective 30. Since then, I have moved to a mirrorless system, the Fuji X to be exact, so I picked up the Retrospective 7. Somewhere in between I picked up the Retrospective 10. After a few years with them all, here are my thoughts…
A Bit Longer And Visually Appealing Story
The Digital Darkroom
The future of photography is wifi and tablets, so I must be able to take my darkroom with me on the road. All of the bags are able to carry an iPad in the rear pocket. Here is the 7 with it.
Here is a quick size comparison of the ThinkTank Retrospective 7, 10, and 30 (left to right) in relation to a Fuji X-E1.
In The Field
Our pioneering co-founder Armando used this exact setup to photograph the Denver Bronco Super Fans during the 2013-2014 season. He actually published the project in his book aptly titled, ‘Denver Bronco Super Fans’.
Click Here if you’d like to take a look and pick up a copy. It is awesome!
What I Like
- They are all pretty discrete.
- They easily fit ‘under the seat in front of you’, so you can carry them on the plane.
- Actually, they all pass as your personal item according to carry on rules. I’ve never had a problem carrying on my Retrospective along with a roller bag.
- I feel like they might be something Indiana Jones would use if he was into photography.
- The 7 fits my iPad in the back pocket (sans case). The 10 fits my iPad in the front pocket (with case). The 30 fits it in the back pocket (with case), making them all viable travel companions.
- The shoulder strap is super comfortable.
- The ‘stuff’ organizer is really well thought out.
- I think it is cool that my bags have Velcro silencers.
- The front pocket(s) can easily hold my GoLite Gortex jacket and some snacks.
- Yes, you can put a bunch of stuff in these bags. That being said, be honest with yourself, just because you can fit it in doesn’t mean you are going to enjoy carrying it for a full day. No matter how comfortable the strap, more gear means more weight. More weight means less fun.
Things To Note
- Because they are soft sided bags, they kind of collapses on themselves a bit, so you might end up digging around for stuff if you have them packed to the brim. But we don’t want to do that because more stuff equals more weight, and more weight equals less fun!
- Also, be aware they are soft sided bag. They do a good job protecting gear from most stuff, but if you drop if off a building, there are no guarantees.
If I could only choose one bag, it would be the 30. It isn’t much bigger in size, but it does make packing/accessing your gear a bit easier if you are rocking a DSLR or two bodies. However, if you are the mirrorless type (even with two bodies) the 7 would be my choice. My doctor says I’m 5′ 8.5″, but pride myself on being 5’9″ and all the bags fit me pretty good.
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A Few Of Our Favorites
Here are a few of our favorite images we made while using this bag.