Categories: Reviews

Manfrotto Advanced² Gear M review: comfort and practicality within reach of a backpack

In recent weeks we have had the opportunity to try the new Manfrotto Advanced² Gear M backpack: here is our review

Manfrotto recently presented the new Advanced² camera bag collection, consisting of 6 backpacks, 5 shoulder bags and 3 holsters. Designed for photographers who live in the city and are always on the move, this new line seeks the right balance between comfort and elegance. Intrigued by the premises, we therefore tested the new Manfrotto Advanced² Gear M backpack, protagonist of this review and companion in more than one photo shoot.

The Advanced² Gear M is designed to keep photographic equipment safe and to maximize the comfort of use. With two large central and two side pockets, the backpack offers space for photographic equipment, a laptop and an external tripod; in addition, it features a modest front pocket with enough space for a diary and a tablet. Covered in water-repellent fabric, this backpack guarantees a good seal in the rain, also thanks to the supplied rain cover. The result is a compact, light and functional backpack, with elegant and modern lines. Follow us, to find out with us.

Technical specifications | Manfrotto Advanced² Gear M review

  • Manfrotto Code: MB MA2-BP-GM.
  • External dimensions: 30 x 18.5 x 47 cm
  • Internal dimensions: 29 x 13.5 x 39 cm
  • Camera Case: 29 x 13.5 x 39 cm
  • Laptop Compartment Dimensions: 29 x 2.5 x 40 cm
  • Personal effects compartment dimensions: 27 x 4 x 38.5 cm
  • Equipment type: Reflex, Mirrorless, Drone, Support
  • Number of goals: 5
  • Compatible Drone Models: DJI Mavic Pro, DJI Mavic Pro Platinum, DJI Mavic Air, DJI Mavic 2 Pro, DJI Mavic 2 Zoom
  • Tripod socket: Yup
  • Material: Water-repellent synthetic fabric
  • Color: Nero
  • Weight: 1.2 kg
  • List price: 132,11€

Usage impressions | Manfrotto Advanced² Gear M review

Comfort and practicality

As we mentioned earlier, the Advanced² Gear M is a backpack made of water-repellent, robust and modern fabric, with a very attractive Urban style design. Worn, it is comfortable and well balanced, with the load on the shoulders balanced by the width of the shoulder straps. The quick adjustment system of the straps allows you to adapt the height of the backpack to your needs, while the front strap joining the shoulder straps makes the load stable. On the rear panel, the back is padded and thermoformed, cushioned for greater comfort and lightness; this, we have seen, prevents contact with the back for the entire surface, and therefore limits sweat after intense use.

The large zipper opening allows for easy front access, with equipment quickly at hand in the main compartment. Inside, the thermoformed Slim-Tech interchangeable dividers are easily removable for space optimization. Basically, the backpack offers the possibility of housing in length a Full frame camera with Battery Grip and a 70-200 f / 2.8 lens with attached lens hood; or, alternatively, with the hood removed and the second optic below. In addition, it is possible to insert a second camera body with Battery grip mounted horizontally, or a second camera body without battery grip with 24-70 f / 2.8 engaged. Two additional optics (or a gimbal and a drone) complete the kit.

The rear padded pocket provides space for a 15 ″ laptop, while the front one has a slot for the tablet and some additional accessories. In the side pockets it is possible to insert the equipment for a quick extraction; finally, the special side strap allows you to attach a travel tripod.

A simulation of equipment: complete professional kit

In our tests, we simulated the behavior of the Advanced² Gear M in a professional work situation, loading a wedding photographer’s kit in the main compartment. This is an example of equipment that can be carried inside the central pocket:

  • 2 fotocamere Full frame + Battery grip
  • 70-200 f/2.8
  • 24-70 f/2.8
  • 16-35 f/2.8
  • 1 optional additional lens by giving up the second Battery grip
  • 2 flash Speedlite
  • As an alternative to additional optics or a speedlite flash: a DJI Mavic Pro.

There is also space for a laptop in the back pocket, a tablet in the front one and two filter cases in the side pockets.

Shock and rain protection

The backpack is made of high quality durable material, which is also impact resistant thanks to the excellent inner lining. The thermoformed Slim-Tech interchangeable dividers behave excellently with the equipment, support its weight without deforming and keep it stable. The high-quality water-repellent fabrics guarantee good moisture resistance and the rain cover protects the backpack from the most intense precipitation. Although the zippers are not equipped with a special waterproof protection, the backpack still has a raised edge inside that reduces the access of moisture.

In summary | Advanced² Gear M review

The new Manfrotto Advanced² Gear M proves to be a reliable and comfortable backpack. With a pleasant and modern design, it is perfect both for walks in urban areas and for shooting in naturalistic places. We particularly appreciated the possibility of carrying a laptop and a tablet in addition to photographic equipment, to always have a support ready in which to view our shots. Even after a long day with the equipment on the shoulders, the backpack proved comfortable and well balanced, thanks above all to the wide and adjustable shoulder straps and the front strap. In addition, the easy access to the main compartment allowed us a quick extraction of the equipment in all situations where practicality was essential.

Finally, the water-repellent material and the rain cover have guaranteed us excellent protection against precipitation and humidity. We were able to wear the backpack in a modest constant rain without running any risk, finding the equipment perfectly dry on our return. The only flaw we would like to point out is that the hinges lack the external waterproof protection; this, in fact, would have guaranteed greater safety in case of use without a rain cover, for quick and convenient extraction. In any case, the presence of the raised inner edge reduces the access to moisture.

Below, a small gallery of shots taken during a walk along the Pisan riverside.

Points in favor

  • Easy access for equipment
  • Ample space for a complete outfit
  • Backrest is 3D thermoformed padded
  • Stand-alone padded pocket for 15 “laptop housing
  • Front pocket for tablet
  • Strap fastening system for tripod or monopod
  • Equipped with rain cover
  • Excellent balance

Points against

  • Zippers without waterproof protection
  • Important price

Published by
Louise Grollman

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