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16 of 16 found the following review helpful:
Excellent Reporter's Satchel Jan 17, 2009
By Howard E. Tyree
The Domke F-802 is exactly what I was looking for in a satchel style photo bag that holds a serious amount of equipment for a days work, easy to access, carry and lays against your body while giving me balance (I sometimes use a cane in one hand to steady myself while walking). Here is what I have put in my bag so far: A Nikon D90 with a Nikkor 16-85mm F3.5-5.6 lens and a MB-80 battery pack attached (may take this off when using this bag); a Nikon Kit 18-105 lens; a Nikon 50 mm 1.8 lens; a SB 600 Speedlight; 2 lens hoods; a flashlight; extra batteries; cards; some manuals; and a Canon G9. And I still have room.
I have also ordered, but not yet received, one 2 compartment and one 3 compartment Domke insert for this bag, but I don't think I will need them. I should also tell you that there aren't any velcro strips on the walls of this bag like the other bags in this line. I really like the versatility this bag offers you.
Why? Well the F-802 doesn't come with inserts the F-803 does.
Upon receipt of the bag I placed my equipment in the bag with the lenses enclosed in the padded bags that came with them. This arrangements works fine If you don't mine the lack of padding. I did, however, place a thick strip of extra padding in the bottom of the bag even though this bag is padded on the bottom and the sides.
I am comfortable with this arrangement because the Domke F-802 is made of heavy water resistant canvas and is well made. I have use and own other Domke bags for years and no equipment has ever been damage in them and I use and carried them literally everywhere. I plan to use this bag to carry my Nikon on day trips and as mentioned earlier I found that satchels and messenger bags lay great against my body giving me the balance I need when shooting without a tripod and generally while carrying this equipment.
I had the Domke F-X5 large messenger bag but it didn't have the pockets I needed and I returned it. Pockets are everything. Did I mention I still had room in this bag for my Macbook. Although I will ( but don't need to) to take the MB-80 battery pack off the camera to allow for a better fit. Domke bags wear well over time and soon conform to your body. I believe this will be one of my favorite Domke bags. I will rate the Domke compartment insert when I receive them.
10 of 11 found the following review helpful:
Excellent, versatile commuter/photog bag at a good price Oct 15, 2008
By D. Bivins
This is a versatile, affordable case for photogs and commuters.
* two interior bag-width pockets (1 deeper for laptop)
* two front pockets, each 1/2 bag-width (strap divides them)
* one back magazine pocket
* two flap zippered pockets (strap divides them)
It's a canvas briefcase divided into two main compartments (with various extra pockets), the rear being for a laptop, thus wider (and I think a bit padded), and the front shallower but still being the width of the bag. Each expands generously along with the rest of the canvas bag. If I don't have my laptop, I put an SLR in the back (in a wrap) and an extra lens if I want it, and my notebooks, books, accessories in the front wide pocket. If I have my laptop, I can stuff the SLR in the front pocket, but I have a bulkier bag. No big deal, but not an everyday comfortable way to go.
Two boxy front pockets each have a flap over the top with a Velcro closure; the flaps are covered by the big flap when the bag isn't overstuffed. If your bag is overstuffed, the flaps are exposed but easily closed by the Velcro, so your stuff won't be exposed or fall out. I keep a rangefinder camera in one and rolls of film and my keys in the other. You could easily slip a flash/speedlite and pocketwizard in each of the front pouches.
The back pocket easily fits a notebook, a couple of magazines, and a couple of odd items (pens, cell phone) or a newspaper. It will really take all, but you'll sacrifice room inside.
The zippered front pockets are ideal for iPod, cell phone, memory cards, pens, small notepads or notecards, business card case.
The main strap's clasp is a pain. It's an older-style metal clasp. I've dug deep grooves into my fingernails trying to open it with one hand. It gets easier over time. It does make me feel that the bag is more secure than with, say, a plastic pinch clasp, so I don't mind.
The shoulder strap is wonderful, with rubber woven into the canvas to make for an excellent grip that isn't too grippy. Just enough to stay put but not enough to wrap a nylon jacket over your shoulder and around your neck when you try to take the bag off.
The canvas wears well over time. In rain, it is slightly water-repellent but what it does take in it absorbs in a way that keeps the wet away from the gear to a large extent. This is not your rain bag, but it will do in a drizzly day.
The bag hangs well on the side or hip and does not feel like it's in the way. The canvas isn't rigid, but it holds its loose shape for packing, etc.
The top handle is so welcome. I hate shoulder-strap briefcases that leave this off. It's invaluable for grabbing the bag quickly or keeping it close to the body or lifting it easily (over a turnstile for example).
I have a second just for a small lighting kit (stand, umbrella, two speedlites, pocketwizards, cables, accessories...)
3 of 3 found the following review helpful:
Great bag built to last Feb 08, 2009
By Francis D. Inserra
I have been using Domke camera bags for my photographic equipment for years. The Domke F-1X bag I have is is almost 20 years old, has traveled with me all over the world, and has held up flawlessly. I was in the market for a new brief case and found the Domke Reporter's Satchel. The construction, materials used, and quality of the Reporter's Satchel are identical to the F-1X Shooter's bag that I use. The bag is nice looking, and works great as a brief case. The bag has several cargo pockets, and the two zipper compartments in the top closing flap are really handy keeping pens, keys, and other items that you want quick access too. In short, this is a well constructed bag that will last for years.
2 of 2 found the following review helpful:
As Expected, Another Legendary Bag Apr 24, 2013
I am a part time free-lance professional photographer. As I have written before in other reviews, and any photographer will attest, you will one day find yourself surrounded by many gear bags. It just happens- don't try to fight it. After culling my most recent collection, I was left with a Domke 700-02A F-2 Bag (Brown Waxwear Finish), a Lowepro Fastpack 350 (Black), a Lowepro Stealth Reporter D650 AW Camera Bag, a Timbuk2 Commute 2.0 Laptop Messenger Bag (modified with a Timbuk2 Snoop Camera Insert), and a Lowepro x300 that replaced my Lowepro Pro Roller x200 Camera Bag (Black). As any photographer will tell you, there are specific bags to meet specific needs and your needs (and style) change regularly. For example, do you really want to bring an X300 to a street shoot in downtown Nashville? What if you need to mix gear and a day's worth of food and weather gear? Do you need a tripod on your pack? Two camera bodies or one? Either way, there are many variables that come into play and they are as unique as the individual photographer.
Just very recently, I had decided to streamline my gear carrying needs. Gone are the days of carrying bulky heavily padded gear bags. I really did some soul searching and examined my needs (realistically), wants, style, and past-gear carrying techniques. For example, I actually threw my back out once using the Lowepro D650 AW; the kind of back injury where you actually hear an audible pop and then see a flash of light before you realize you cannot move. I clearly overloaded the bag and I admit it was my fault. Nevertheless, that event alone should have caused me to ditch the bag (though they are great bags). Based on my examination, I sold all the bags except for my Domke F-2. I then realized I needed to replace my Timbuk2 setup as an "everyday and everything bag" to transit between work and home while still carrying my camera. Based on my experience with the F-2 I purchased both the Domke F-802 and F-1x. The F-802 would serve as my everyday bag while the F-1x in place of/or as a supplement to the F-2 would be used when I need to carry a lot of gear. The F-802, as with all Domke bags, is a pleasure to hold and use. The genius of this bag is the simplicity of the bag itself. The bag takes a minimalist approach. Gone is the extreme padding and bulkiness of the Lowepro with the countless pockets, large and small. Gone is the weird shape my Timbuk2 commute 2.0 bag assumed when used with Snoop camera insert and the numerous buckles and zippers. The new bag, clearly intended to be retro style.
The build quality of the F-802 is the same as other Domke canvas satchels. A minimal approach to internal padding provides sides and bottom padding, though not very thick. Very heavy duty water resistant canvas combined with heavy duty metal clasps, quality Velcro, very heavy duty plastic (where used on shoulder strap), and heavy duty webbing shoulder strap with woven in (and somewhat famous) anti-slip rubber material on the underside. I can't say enough about the build quality of the bag. The design of the bag, though simplistic and minimalistic, is well thought. Domke provides a top handle to the messenger bag, which I believe is critical for easy use. The two front pockets on the bag, which expand generously, have Velcro flaps and the main flap then covers those pockets. On the main flap, on the outside, are two critical zippered pockets. The single cinch strap design makes it far easier to use than those bags that have two. There are two compartments inside the bag- the main compartment and a file/magazine pocket. You will find no pencil pockets, memory card pockets, etc... The back pocket easily fits an Ipad or notebook and magazines or other items. The design of the bag provides you the ability to move about discreetly unlike larger bulkier bags. This bag stays close to the body and unless completely over stuffed, conforms to your body. I find it much easier to carry than my Timbuk2 Commute Messenger 2.0 with a Snoop Camera Insert.
Though the minimalist approach of the Domke F-802 makes it far more streamlined, the bag can hold a decent amount of gear and will completely satisfy those that take their cameras about everywhere they go. However, note that the F-802 does not come with inserts. You will need to provide your own. In my case, I had some old Domke inserts and simply conformed those for use with this bag. In my configuration, I was able to easily (emphasis added) fit the following items without making the bag bulky. I still had room left over.
-Nikon D300s (grip off)
-Nikon 85mm f/1.8G (attached)
-Nikon SB-700 Speedlight in OEM case
-Nikon 80-200 f/2.8
-Two file folders
Although the bag does not come with a raincover, the canvas is water resistant and more than sufficient for light rain. There are raincovers you can buy third-party, but you would have to give up room in the bag to store it. In short, most people will not be disappointed with this bag unless they have a lot of gear they want to carry. This is an everyday bag or a street shooters bag. If you are going on location and bringing a lot of gear, look at the F-1x or move over to the Lowepro Stealth Reporter or roller series. In my case, I decided to move away from heavily padded and bulky bags with the exception of a Domke Roller (220) for those times I need a lot of gear. Even the roller is streamlined compared to other brands.
2 of 2 found the following review helpful:
only missing one thing Feb 22, 2011
Typical od Domke bags, this is really well made and should stand up to lots of hard use. Fits a laptop well with room for lots of other things on top of it, but for something called a "Reporter's Satchel" I wish it had a panel with loops for pens, small pads, cell phone, and so on somewhere in it. It seems strange that it lacks these things. I had another Domke laptop bag that had a padded vertical insert and also all of the organizational elements that I am describing, but why not in this one? Overall, I am pleased with the bag and would not hesitate to buy it, or any other Domke bag, again.
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