A few years ago, I wrote a french review on the Lowepro Flipside 400 AW for my other blog. Now that time has passed, I’m still using this bag and I still like it.
The Flipside is not my first camera bag, I previously used a Lowepro Rezo 140 AW which I loved. It was high quality and I trusted it completely. It fitted perfectly my Fuji S5600, but as I acquired a DSLR and a couple of lenses, I found that my bag was way too small. So after some time using an old shoulder bag from my father, I decided to look for a replacement that would fit me better. I must admit, that I was biased towards Lowepro, although I looked at other brands too. After I had read dozens of reviews and researched the web extensively for photographs of the different models that I liked, I settled down for the Flipside 400 AW
I was seduced by the quality of the bag. When you carry around costly gear, you want it to be safe, and the Flipside conveys this feeling effectively. The bag is made of good quality fabric and has held the years just fine, without any damage.
The Flipside is big. I can carry around my gripped 40D, with a 70-200mm f/2.8 mounted on it, a Tokina 12-24mm F/4, a Canon 85mm f/1.8, a Canon 50mm f/1.8, a 430EXII, 4 spare batteries for the 40D, spare batteries for the flash, a bunch of CF cards, my grey card, cleaning gear, a remote, my tripod, two water bottles, and some other small junk that I feel like taking with me. At some point the bag becomes really heavy, because you crammed too much gear in it, I would recommend to do that only if you are using it as a transport bag, because if you go out on a photo walk with a heavy bag, you’ll come home sooner than you would like to !
One of my favorite feature of the bag is that the opening is in your back. Not only does this give an easy access to your gear, but you are safe from pickpockets. On my last trip, I hid my cellphone and my wallet in it along with my camera as tourist are one of the favorite targets of pickpockets, and I sure did look like one with my map and my camera.
The bag is also weather resistant thanks to a rain cover. It is easy to put on the bag, but it’s a pain to dry it afterwards. Note that you cannot use the cover when a tripod is fastened on the bag. The bag was put to test on its very first use whan a tropical rain surprised me. I was happy to see it protect my gear so good, but I never doubted that it would do it.