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Made Products Camera Armor Seattle Sling review: Made Products Camera Armor Seattle Sling

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Waterproofing camera bags is generally difficult--there are simply too many zippers, seams, flaps, and other potential points of entry--so most manufacturers opt to just put a bag over them. The Camera Armor Seattle Sling from Made Products switches that up, encasing your gear in a thick, strong waterproof bag that then secures inside a sling bag. Its relatively small size requires you to travel fairly light and its square shape is a little odd for a sling, but the Seattle Sling is a strong choice for photographers who frequently find themselves in damp, dirty, or dangerous conditions.

7.5

Made Products Camera Armor Seattle Sling

Pricing Not Available

The Good

Completely airtight dry bag; no zippers; adjustable padded gear box; comfortable; sturdy construction.

The Bad

No closable pockets; strap can be worn on right shoulder only; not very quick or quiet during access; small storage area.

The Bottom Line

The Camera Armor Seattle Sling from Made Products is a truly waterproof camera bag, but you may find its small size constraining.

The Seattle Sling doesn't look like a typical sling bag; it's basically a box on a strap. Standing on end, the box measures 14.5 inches high by 9.5 inches wide by 8.5 inches deep. The entire bag weighs 6.2 pounds. The first thing you'll notice about the outside is the complete absence of pockets. The only external storage you get is four pairs of fixed, strap loops and one set of adjustable straps for securing larger equipment like a tripod. A wide, well-padded strap is firmly attached to the box and when worn, crosses from right shoulder to left hip. It's adjustable and there's a stabilizer strap to help secure the load, but for better or worse it cannot be switched to run from the left shoulder to right hip. This isn't uncommon with slings; but unlike many competitors, the Seattle Sling is comfortable for both men and women to wear. And even under full load, the back padding keeps the bag comfortable.

Ripping apart the heavy-duty hook-and-loop closure on the top (or side if you're wearing it) gives you access to three, small mesh pockets, the only pockets on the whole bag. These pockets are completely exposed--remember there are no zippers anywhere--and are not waterproof, though nothing will fall out of them once the bag is closed.

However, everything that sits inside the bright-orange dry bag is protected from weather and water. Keeping the bag airtight is simple. The bag seals at the top with magnetic strips, which you fold over the top three times and secure to strong plastic clips that run outside the sling and connect back to the bottom of the dry bag. It essentially creates loops at either end secured around the sling itself. There's also a strap that runs across the top of the dry bag's flap, adding another layer of security.

Inside the bag is a padded equipment cubby with four adjustable dividers; enough space to hold a camera body, two compact zoom lenses, a flash, and some small accessories. This is my main gripe with the Seattle Sling: there just isn't a lot of room. Also, with no pockets or pouches inside, smaller items such as batteries and chargers, media cards, or cleaning equipment are left to rattle around inside if you want to keep them dry.

The Seattle Sling can be used with or without the dry bag. Using the dry bag slows down access and the hook-and-loop closure is so strong that there's a good chance you'll scare off wildlife if you have to open your bag nearby. However, getting into the dry bag is considerably faster and less clumsy than pulling off a rain cover, and it offers greater protection from weather.

And the Seattle Sling does keep your equipment dry. I subjected it to several bouts of rain--from mist to downpour--and no moisture ever entered the dry bag. Similarly, the bag protects everything inside from dust and dirt. The thick padding and tear-resistant outer shell do an excellent job of protecting gear from abuse, too.

Those who travel with a lot of gear will likely be disappointed by the limited storage space afforded by the Camera Armor Seattle Sling. It's more of a day bag or for use carrying select, expensive, or delicate equipment. However, the peace of mind provided by its airtight seal is worth the price. Accessing a camera is easier and faster than if you had a rain cover over the entire sling, too, and you do have the option of using it without the dry bag altogether. It's also comfortable to wear, thanks to plenty of padding and well-positioned straps.

7.5

Made Products Camera Armor Seattle Sling

Pricing Not Available

Score Breakdown

Design 8Features 7Performance 0