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Saturday, December 17, 2011

Hands-On with the Lowpro Photo Sport 200 AW, Part One

The Lowpro Photo Sport 200 AW has been around for a little while and demonstrated online in various active uses. The features of this line are many and demonstrated widely. There is no question that it is a  fantastic, feature-packed, well-built bag designed for the active shooter. What has not been widely addressed, however, is the cross-gender applicability. Men are not the only ones who mountain bike, trail run, ski, snowboard, hike, and rock climb. And shoot while doing them. Women do as well.
Men and women may be equal in many things but lets face it. We are built differently. When a camera bag is required to achieve a particular "fit" for maximum effectivenes, it is best to take these, um, differences in mind.

When initially trying on this backpack, it was quickly apparent that it may not have been thoroughly tested on women. At least not smaller women. The sternun strap that connects the two shoulder straps is woefully (and embarassingly) misplaced. It needs to be higher or lower. The height of it is adjustable somewhat but if it is moved down to a (ahem) more comfortable level, the strap is just a tad to short to be easily buckled except on the skinniest of users. And I am not a large person trying to do this. If the strap is adjusted to the maximum upper position, it was also at its maximum (ahem) "discomfort" position.

This problem could have been completely avoided if they had either A) made the strap holding the buckle just a little longer, or B) made the slider bands on the shoulder straps extend just a little higher.

Looking at the curvature of the shoulder straps for a moment, would it have been possible to have extended this up more? Most likely. There appears to be enough room to take that strap up at least another inch, maybe even up to 1.5 inches before getting too close to the edge of the shoulder strap. 

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