As a photographer using a more compact camera system, I have been on a never-ending pursuit for the perfect camera bag.
I am sure that you, reading along at home, would agree that there is no such thing as the perfect bag. Regardless, I continue the search for something that is perfect for street photography use and as an everyday carry.
A lot of big-name camera bags are quite obviously camera bags in the way they are designed and branded. And all too often, such bags are designed to hold bigger DSLRs and lenses.
I believe more emphasis needs to be placed on designing stealthy camera bags suited to mirrorless camera systems. Langly may have just hit the mark with the Langly Cross-Body Camera Bag.
Its stylish understated looks are matched by the high quality of material used to construct this bag. Further to this, the clever use of a separate and removable camera insert allows for multiple uses for a messenger-style camera bag that doesn’t look like a camera bag.
Table of Contents
Langly Cross-Body Camera Bag Specs
- A great looking bag that does not scream ‘Camera Bag!’
- Neat and slimline bag ideal for street photography
- Exceptional build quality
- Flexible uses from everyday carry to camera bag
- The tight main opening makes it difficult to access gear
- The base may become scuffed over time if not cared for
- Dimensions: 30cm W x 22cm H x 10cm D (12″ W x 9″ H x 4″ D)
- TPU-coated twill and leather for ultimate waterproofing and stain protection.
- Reinforced camera inserts designed to cradle any Micro Four-Thirds (M4/3) camera and up to 3 lenses.
- Removable camera insert comprised of nylon-wrapped EVA foam.
Build & Appearance
The Langly Cross-Body Camera Bag is incredibly well constructed with a TPU coated twill material – the same sort of material that is used to manufacture outdoor and safety wear.
This gives it a great level of flexibility while being waterproof and stain-resistant.
The core material gives the bag both a high tech look and feel. It is accompanied by durable hardware from the large main zipper to the buckles and loops used to secure and adjust the main shoulder strap.
A woven nylon edging travels around the entirety of the bag providing further strength and accentuating the external pockets.
The bag holds its shape and forms effortlessly either full or empty and the internal of the bag is lined with a softer fabric. The removable and collapsible camera insert is made from nylon-wrapped EVA foam and provides a suitable amount of protection for your mirrorless system camera gear.
Having taken this bag out and about for testing, I noticed that the bottom became scuffed just from putting the bag down a number of times. I was concerned that this may present an ongoing issue with the bag base wearing out. However, after a simple wipe down with a damp cloth, the base was back to looking like new again.
Overall the Langly Cross-Body Camera Bag is a stylish and good looking daily carry camera messenger bag, suited for a comfortable street style of appearance.
It is sturdy and solid with a range of uses with or without the included removable camera insert.
I have already spoken about the quality of the materials used to manufacture the Langly Cross-Body Camera Bag. Further to this, all panels of the bag are secured with heavy stitching and the use of nylon strapping.
Metal D-rings are secured to the rear of the bag in the same way and provide a set of solid anchors for the messenger style bag strap.
The main adjustable bag strap is made from 40mm wide nylon strap that has ample length to suit any carry style and body type.
The strap is broken halfway by a large and heavy-duty plastic buckle, allowing for the bag to be clipped and unclipped over your shoulder.
Halfway along the strap is a removable foam-filled shoulder pad giving far greater comfort – keeping in mind that there is only so much gear this bag will hold.
A key feature of this bag is that the top rolls over to provide greater security and weatherproofing. This roll-top is secured by two nylon straps that are adjustable and secured by two buckles located at the rear of the bag.
I really appreciate this security feature on the Langly Cross-Body Camera Bag, as you can only access the main bag pocket via the roll-top, and with the buckles against your body, no one but you can get in.
The Langly Cross-Body Camera Bag features four external pockets, the first of which is at the front of the bag and only expands once the roll-top clips are undone.
It features a soft fabric partition and some loops for pens and other gear. On each side of the bag, there is a small pocket – however due to the flat nature of the bag, these incredibly tight pockets would not hold a water bottle or compact travel tripod.
The final external pocket is at the rear of the bag and lays flat. Again this pocket expands for easy access once the roll-top buckles are undone, securing whatever you store in here to some degree.
This pocket could be used to house a tablet of some description but part of it would be exposed as the pocket wall is not terribly deep.
When the camera insert is removed from the Langly Cross-Body Camera Bag, the main internal pocket is quite large and has three internal sleeves for storing gear in a more organised way.
At the rear is a sleeve with a velcro strap to secure a small laptop or large tablet. Keep in mind that my 13″ MacBook pro would not fit in at all.
Towards the front are two smaller pockets for storage. With the camera insert out, this bag can store a lot of gear and would be great for someone who loves to carry their tech with them.
Items such as a tablet, power banks, mouse, cords, headphones and other similar tech gear could be well organised and stored in this bag for an everyday carry.
Once the padded camera storage insert is inside the bag, it is very difficult to access those pockets let alone store gear in them. The camera insert dominates this space especially once you load it up with a camera and a couple of small lenses.
The Langly Cross-Body Camera Bag is quite a thin bag at only 10cm and it has no ‘give’ in its dimensions due to the super sturdy material used. Therefore, the amount of camera gear that you can carry in this bag is quite limited.
I found that the inset was able to hold the Fujifilm X-T3 (without a lens attached) and two small lenses.
One of the biggest setbacks for this bag is that the main zipper opening is not quite long enough to allow a packed camera insert to be placed inside or removed from the bag. You have to unpack your camera gear from the insert before you can put it inside the bag.
I would have liked to have been able to grab my loaded insert and drop it into the bag with ease to make the use of the bag more flexible.
Further to this, the limited opening of the main compartment made it difficult to quickly and effortlessly grab my gear. If Langly had just allowed for the zipper to travel further at each end of the bag, then the opening would have been more flexible.
It almost feels like the included camera insert is too big for the bag as it easily collapses once it is placed inside. It all still works as intended, but it is just not as fluid as it should be.
The Langly Cross-Body Camera Bag can fit a reasonable amount of gear provided you are packing a smaller mirrorless system.
Due to the slimline design of the bag with a depth of only 10cm, you would only be considering carrying smaller lenses – in the case of the photo above, a couple of small Fujifilm prime lenses.
Alternatively, this bag would also be perfect if you carried a smaller point and shoot camera for street photography, but also wanted to include your tech gear.
It is also worth noting that when the camera insert is inside the bag and has your camera gear in it, the front and rear external pockets become very tight. This limited the gear I could put in and also hampered access to these two pockets.
I would have liked to have seen a little more give in those pockets to maximise their use.
Here is what I can fit in the bag with the camera insert installed.
- Fujifilm X-T3 inside the insert
- Fujifilm XF 23mm F/2 inside the insert
- Fujifilm XF 50mm F/2 inside the insert
- Medium-sized Moleskine notebook
- Two spare batteries
- Small case with cleaning gear and SD cards
- Keys, iPhone, Wallet
Ease of Use/Comfort
Thanks to the quality and durability of the materials used in producing this bag, it has a good amount of weight to it when empty – even if you carry only a couple of light items in the Langly Cross-Body Camera Bag, your bag feels solid and secure.
Further to this, all of the buckles are easy to access and use and each is accompanied by a movable clip to secure loose strap ends.
The strap is a great width for this kind of bag as it is not so thin that it digs into you. The added shoulder pad ensures that when carrying this bag either cross-body or just over one shoulder, it is secure and very comfortable.
With the camera insert removed, the main compartment is easier to access and the bag has lots of sensible storage solutions for your everyday carry. However, as mentioned, once the camera insert is in the bag it can be awkward to pull your gear in and out.
Of course, this all depends on the type of camera system you are using and how large your lenses are.
Value for Money
The Langly Cross-Body Camera Bag is available in a Slate or Coyote colour variation. The bag retails for around US$110, and this includes the camera insert.
Overall I think this is great value for money when you consider that the bag provides multiple uses, especially for someone looking for a handsome tech-bag.
Camera bags in general can be expensive, and more often than not serve only that one purpose…
This Langly bag, however, doesn’t look like a camera bag, is stylish enough to be used in a corporate setting and is incredibly durable and secure. Those elements alone are worth the investment.
Langly Cross-Body Camera Bag Review | Conclusion
Unlike a lot of camera bags on the market, the Langly Cross-Body Camera Bag is incredibly discreet, compact and ideal for someone not wanting to advertise that they are carrying a camera.
In that sense, this bag would suit someone that wanted to carry a small kit or single camera for street photography, whilst still having space for their other tech gadgets and accessories.
For the photographer that likes to carry larger sized cameras and lenses, this bag is simply not for you. Its super-slim profile can make getting out even the most minimal camera awkward at times.
I feel that opportunity exists for Langly to bring to market a version 2 of this bag with a smaller camera insert and broader opening to the main compartment. These are only minor issues for me but they do contribute to the overall user experience.
At a great price point, this bag ticks a lot of boxes for those of us in search of the perfect camera bag.