One struggle, that many photographers may likely encounter is the one in regards to how they can safely carry so much gear around and that’s where the Manfrotto Manhattan Mover 50 camera backpack comes into consideration.
Designed with mirrorless and DSLR cameras in mind, with room for up to 9 lenses, space for a laptop and loads of internal and external pockets, the Manfrotto Manhattan Mover 50 camera backpack is a worthy bit of kit for beginners to fully fledged masters of photography.
Something I often point out about Manfrotto camera bags is just how discreet they are and this backpack is no exception. Discretion is an important feature when it comes to something that’s going to be carrying many thousands of pounds worth of expensive equipment. From the outside, it looks just like a plain backpack that’s probably full of clothes or lunch for work. Even with the Manfrotto logo in place, nothing is screaming out to potential thieves, therefore giving them less motivation to target you on a busy train or while walking through a city center.
The thing I really love about this backpack is that Manfrotto has made the camera storage compartment a completely removable separate unit that simply slides into the bag and out of it. This means the Manfrotto Manhattan Mover 50 camera backpack can be more or less used as a normal backpack for those days your camera is staying at home.
As for the removable compartment itself, well it’s very well made with enough padding to ensure your gear remains intact and plenty of room inside the padded divider separated compartments. It can also be carried thanks to a handle at the top. It features a mesh style zip up pocket that runs the entire front of the compartment. Unfortunately, on its own, it’s not discreet at all, so unless it’s in the backpack, I would advise not to carry it around with you.
The front pocket of the removable compartment actually works in tandem with a large zip up panel on the rear of the main backpack. Unzip this large panel and providing the removable compartment is inserted with the front pocket towards the back of the backpack you get access to the front zip up pocket of the removable compartment, which allows you to open the compartment and access your camera gear without having to remove and reinsert the compartment.
A quick glance at the backpack and you’ll find a few external pockets as well as the main one. One of these pockets, which is neatly hidden just below the Manfrotto badge is ideal for storing things such as notebooks and other paperwork. At the bottom and separated from this pocket is another zip up pocket, which can be used for things such as cables or stationary.
A dedicated laptop/tablet combo pocket is also present on this backpack. This pocket sits just between the notebook/paperwork compartment and the main compartment. It provides room for a laptop up to 15.6” in size and a tablet computer. Padding is in place to ensure a laptop and tablet are as protected as can be. I have to say I am pleased Manfrotto chose to put the laptop compartment at the front of the backpack as opposed to the back as it actually means there’s none of that discomfort associated with a laptop prodding into your back as you wear it out and about.
The front of the backpack also houses another ace up its sleeve and first glance you wouldn’t even realize there’s anything there. The Manfrotto Manhattan mover 50 camera backpack makes use of what Manfrotto refers to as the ‘Neverlose’ system. This system allows you to securely strap accessories to the front of the backpack. It’s designed with tripods in mind, but Manfrotto advertises it as being able to carry other things such as a jacket, skateboard and even a drone. The double webbings used to secure such items to the front of the bag are carefully hidden away in a small zip up compartment located on the right-hand side edge of the backpack.
Without the camera compartment inserted, the main pocket provides plenty of space for your personal items such as clothes, lunch or whatever you might carry around during your day, heck there’s plenty of room for a shopping basket full of stuff. There’s also a small zip up compartment located inside this pocket, that’s perfect for storing small bits and bobs.
The shoulder straps are fully adjustable and padded quite nicely to ensure the right level of comfort for the user. There are also stabilization straps in place both at the waist and chest levels, which ensure the bag is kept neatly balanced and sturdy with no free movements. Lastly, there’s also a trolley strap to make sliding the backpack on and off of a trolley a quick and hassle-free task.
Overall I have found the Manfrotto Manhattan Mover 50 camera backpack to be very pleasing in many ways. Its discreet design means it’s less likely to attract would-be thieves, its large size allows it to store many bits of equipment and the removable compartment allows you to use it as a normal backpack, when you don’t require your camera equipment. A backpack like this doesn’t come cheap though, the Manfrotto Manhattan Mover 50 camera backpack is sold with a price tag around £129.00, although to be honest the bag is worth it, thanks to its neat design, its many features and all the space it offers.
- Discreet design
- Plenty of space
- Can be used as a camera bag or a regular backpack
- Feature packed
- Removeable camera compartment isn’t discreet