I was recently sent the Pelican MPB35 mobile protect backpack and guys it’s a keeper! First, let me say this, it is not a photography backpack. It’s not fully protected and doesn’t have a lot of compartments or dividers that we usually like when it comes to holding our gear.
With that being said, it is a fantastic backpack and might I say… diaper bag? Yes, you heard that right, diaper bag. I am a mom to two biological kids and also a foster parent, so at any given time I could have 3-5 kids with me in a variety of ages. Life becomes very unpredictable as a foster parent and it has been super helpful during it all as a backpack. I know what you’re thinking — that sounded extremely cheesy. But hear me out.
First, even though I am a mom, I am also a photographer. This means I not only need sippy cups, wipes and toys with me, I also need my laptop and camera about 90% of the time. This bag has allowed me to carry all that knowing that all my gear is in a safe place. This bag is made out of a water-resistant material which is a key must-have feature as a mom. Someone spills something daily in my life and if everything in my world could be water-resistant, my heart would be so happy! For instance: Pillows, carpet and car seats just to name a few.
It also has this unique feature which is a loop-and-lock zipper pull system. It allows you to lock your zippers and makes it a little harder for people/kids to get into things. Not only as a mom, but also as a photographer I wish this feature was on more bags. It really is amazing.
It has a cool side water bottle/sippy cup pocket on both sides that actually took me a minute to find, as they are hidden so well. This features a small tie down bungee cord that you can also wrap around your bottle, which was super convenient considering I hate when the kid’s cups fall out whenever I am bending over or moving the bag around.
The bag itself has a decent amount of space in the main section which was great because I was not only able to fit my camera bag insert in it, but I also fit a change of clothes for each kid, diapers, wipes, and variety of other mommy essentials. I love that there is a separate laptop pocket. I have a 16″ laptop and it fit great with plenty of room to even throw in my tablet and sons iPad. That pocket is padded all around very well. I am not sure what their intent was for the little hook within that pocket, but I wrapped my battery and cords up and shoved them in there. I just felt like it kept everything nice and organized.
The last two features that I really enjoyed are the cell phone/sunglasses pocket that is so conveniently placed at the top of the backpack. My kids called it the “mommy pocket.” It is lined with this great thick fabric and super easy to access. I ended up throwing my keys and phone in there.
I also became a big fan of the compression molded shoulder straps and back panel. When my kids were younger, I used to think there will come a time when I won’t need a diaper bag. Now I feel like that’s a complete lie. Moms are always carrying things whether it is their own stuff or someone else’s — mom’s always got it. We just end up carrying a ton of stuff. Why not carry it in this beautiful backpack that is also designed to give you support that killing your back or shoulders during the process?
As for my some of the work gear I carry around, I was able to slide my Samsung Notebook 7 Spin into the laptop bag pocket super easy. This was impressive, given that the laptop is larger than most. I threw my Lumix Gx8, and 4 lenses into the insert of my Vanguard VEO 37 bag and tossed that into the backpack. Since this isn’t really a camera backpack I recommend keeping all your camera/video gear store in a separate bag within the backpack. You do not want your gear being tossed around with limited padding. However, you could easily fit a handful of speedlights, small reflector and a small tripod or two in the bag. The Oben CT-3451 Carbon Fiber Travel Tripod with BE-113T Ball Head fit like a glove in this sucker with room to spare.
I would highly recommend this bag to any mom/photographer. It’s weather resistant, has tons of space, childproof with their zipper locking system and easy on your back. If you ask me that’s a win for everyone. If you are interested in finding out more about this bag head over to B&H. This bag retails for $189.99.