I wanted a new Domke to use for air travel. My requirements were that it not look like a typical camera bag and that I be able to stow my laptop so I can use it as my only carry-on in Europe. Some airlines and airports are still limited to one carry-on only so a secondary laptop bag isn"t possible. I went for the largest Domke messenger bag made, the black canvas F-804.
This isn"t what I would pack for the trip as I"m still undecided on my lenses and I will probably have some other trip stuff to tote as well, but this is my everyday gear that I would use around town.
Canon 5D w/ grip
24mm, 85mm, 200mm, 16-35, and 24-105, Canon 1.4x
580 EX, ST-E2 wireless, Stofen / Demb flip it
Gorillapod (specifically for Europe, never used before)
batteries, blower, cleaning supplies, etc
Loaded down like this it holds everything that I normally put in my large Domke J1. In fact I used the J-series 4 sided insert...
The lenses go in the insert and the camera can sit a few different ways on the side.
The 580 and Gorillapod go in one pocket and misc. supplies go in the other. I wasn"t sure I wanted anything in the exterior pockets as it adds bulk and I want to be careful of sleight-of-hand theft -- so for traveling I will probably ditch a lens or two and move this gear into one of the insert pockets.
The lens hoods ride on top; this isn"t as convenient as a Domke with side pockets where the lens hoods fit well.. but it works and isn"t really a hassle. There aren"t many traveler bags that could hold these lenses with the hoods on.
And now for the unfortunate part. I expected my laptop to be able to fit in the back pocket, but no such luck. The only time I"ll have it with me is while actually traveling; I wouldn"t walk around like this. You can also see that when fully packed, this is not a small messenger bag. Of course it is holding everything that a J1 does so you can"t expect it to be much smaller. It will serve my purpose well which is as an airport carry-on Domke that offers stealth as well as protection.