It's been a little over 5 months since I first received my Wandrd Prvke 31 (shout out to Lauren for an awesome Christmas gift), so I finally feel like I can sufficiently review it. At this point, I've basically put the bag through hell and back. Whether it be huge snow storms in New York, desert dunes in Colorado, or just good old fashion plane rides, the Wandrd Prvke holds it's own. I can confidently say right off the bat that there's not many negatives about this bag, so if that's all you need to hear to convince yourself, stop reading now and go buy the bag. Seriously, just go get it. If you still need coerced a little, then keep on reading, you rebel.
Before we get into the meat and potatoes, let me explain what originally drew me to this bag in the first place.
1.) It looks cool as hell - the look of this bag is probably a huge positive to some, and a huge negative to others, but I personally love the look of this bag.
2.) I love supporting awesome companies - This bag is made by some cool guys and I really appreciate smaller companies like them who can create a product that can stand up to the bigger name brands out there.
3.) It's simple - The bag is sleek and simple. there's not a ton of pockets that get in the way and it's creative with it's space and gear management.
Now lets get to that meat and potatoes I spoke of earlier.
There's a few things I look for in a photography bag, and some things I avoid like the plague. The good news is, The Wandrd Prvke is not the plague. In fact, it's a pretty rad bag that has some features I never thought I would even need, but now I can't imagine not having. I'm going to break down the bag into three categories to explain these features and everything else you need to know about the bag.
The looks of this bag are, in my humble opinion, better than most bags out there today. Most manufactures don't seem to really care about how the bag looks and feels and that has always confused me. The Wandrd Prvke uses it's design to keep itself looking sleek, while also maximizing the space it has. It's going to be one of those designs that people either love or hate, and I get that. It's definitely got a more "urban" feel, but that doesn't prevent it from working great out in nature, which is where I mostly take it.
It also has a roll top as well, which can make or break the looks for certain people. Personally, I think the roll top looks great and goes along with that sleek look that also maximizes space.
As I'm writing this, there are currently three colors to choose from. Good ol' fashion black, wasatch green, and aegean blue. And the answer is no, I have no idea what a wasatch is. Neither does my computer spell check. In fact, this whole review has so many spelling "errors" because Wandrd isn't a huge fan of vowels.
Anyways, the colors you can choose from are all neat-o. I went with black, but you can't go wrong with any of the options available. I would like to see some more color choices though, I think an orange would be fun, as well as a white.
I mean, just LOOK at this bag. It's way too cool for me, that's for sure.
Design and Fuctionality
So we already know the bag looks good, but does it feel good?
The short answer is yes, absolutely. It feels rugged and seems to have great build quality. YKK zippers, double stitched goodness, and water resistant materials all make for a great bag, that's just science. The straps sit comfortably on your shoulders and have just enough padding. The problems for me occur when you get to the back panel. Since I do a lot of hiking, I tend to sweat a lot. I'm not faulting the bag for that. It's just that I feel like my back sweats more when I have this on more than any bag I've ever owned. Maybe this is a personal problem, but it's definitely something to look out for. That being said, when I'm walking around the airport or around town, it doesn't seem to bother me too bad, and it's definitely comfortable.
As I said in the beginning of the review, the bag is simple. There's only a few pockets on it. It's all on purpose to keep that bag looking the way it does, and it doesn't take away from the functionality in the slightest. There's more than enough pockets to store your gear and everything else you need, unless you're hauling around a giant 500mm lens or something like that. For me, I typically carry my laptop, assorted cables and hard drives, my D750, a 16-35mm, a 70-200mm, a 50mm prime, a flash, a filter kit, and my tripod (hoping to add a drone to that list soon). This all fits in there super easy and it feels like it was made to be in that bag. Of course you'll need the camera cube from Wandrd to hold your camera gear, but if you're a photographer, it's a no brainer. The way you access the main compartment where you'll be storing all that expensive gear is one of my favorite things about the bag. I have no idea why camera bag companies think anyone wants to lay the part of the bag they put on their back on the dirty ground. It makes no sense. Yet companies are still putting the access to the bag on the front. It makes so much more sense for me to set the front of the bag on the ground with the back facing up, and then do what I have to do. This way, my back stays clean (minus all that sweat) and everyone is happier because of it. So that's an instant 10/10 from me. Above where your camera cube is located, there's a separate zippered compartment that goes into the roll top. This is great for any items that either don't fit in your camera cube, or that you need to access quickly through the roll top (maybe a jacket?). You also have the option to remove the camera cube all together and unfold a divider in the bag to create one large compartment, so you have a lot of customization there.
If you don't want to take the bag all the way off to get to your camera, you also have the option of the side compartment that acts as a quick access right into the gear compartment. A great feature that you didn't know you needed until you missed that awesome shot setting down your bag to get your camera out.
I should also note that the tripod fits great along the side in the water bottle pocket that's located on the opposite side of the quick access pocket. The pocket also unzips to extend it's mesh bits to fit that giant bottle you probably have.
On the back side of the pack, there's a nice little pocket for your passport, wallet, and other valuables. It's great storage space and I love the added safety of it being against my back, rather than in a front pocket. Along the back right side of the bag, there's another little pocket for your keys or other small things. I always just leave my car keys in there when we travel so I don't lose them.
Back on the front of the bag, you'll notice two more pockets, a big one on the front, which is good for papers or business cards I guess. I'm not 100% sure how to fully utilize this pocket yet, and I really wish there were some pen holders in it. Not a huge issue though.
Above that, you'll notice a quick access mini pocket that is great for headphones or sunglasses when you're at the airport.
Speaking of airports, be prepared to take that laptop out of that TSA approved laptop sleeve. I don't think any TSA is going to let you slide that through, and I'm saying that from personal experience. That being said, it's still a great sleeve that will totally protect your laptop.
There's also another secret compartment on this bag. On the bottom, you'll find a neat little pocket for a rainfly (one you can purchase from Wandrd). It's never in the way and when it starts to pour down rain, you're going to be happy it's there. The bag is water resistant, but I wouldn't trust that in a crazy downpour.
Last but not least, there's the cool little magnetized handle for the bag. This is such a great design feature and it doesn't really ever seem to get in the way.
This is what I typically carry along with me, with room to spare. And yes, I did take this on my hotel floor.
I'll keep this section short and sweet for you. The Wandrd Prvke does great while you're out in the field. Like most good bags, it sits there and doesn't run away while you're shooting. There's enough storage and gear management that you won't get too unorganized, and it packs up simple. I've had a few instances where I've misplaced things and found them in the bag weeks later, so it also does a great job with black magic too. Seriously though, it gets a perfect 10/10 from me just because of the way the bag opens up to the gear.
By the way, I should mention If you're on the fence about deciding which size to get, I would suggest just getting the bigger version, especially if you're a DSLR user like myself.
Did I mention this bag looks awesome?
Yes there's some things I would change with the bag if I could. Most of the things are small details that don't affect the overall function of the bag though, and I can totally live with that. I haven't ran into any issues where I had to stop and say "this bag is the reason why I can't do what I want to do." It doesn't go over the top, it just does what it's supposed to, all while looking really cool. I think that's what you need in a camera bag. So if you're on the fence about if you should get the bag or not, go for it. I think once you get it and try it out for yourself, you'll realize the Wandrd Prvke is pretty close to perfect.
I should mention, they aren't paying me to say any of these super nice things, I just really like this bag and want to share my experiences.
If you want to check out their website to purchase your own, click the link down below.
and as always, thanks for reading everyone!
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