I’ve had my drone for a couple of years now, and I take it on every trip with me if I know I’d get at least once chance to send it up there! But when it comes to drones, there’s a decent amount of kit that’s required for extended sets of flying.
You need to carry spare blades in case you crash it in to a tree, spare batteries as flight time can be quite limited in different conditions, ND filters, chargers, and even more if you’re more of a”build not bought” kind of flyer.
When it comes to photography and bag combinations, you’ll find that many camera bags can suit the needs of somebody with a drone that folds up nice and tight, along with the many accessories that come with them.
However, they don’t tend to always suit those who may have the traditional ‘X’ shape drones that can’t be folded up or dismantled.
The LowePro Drone Guard is a selection of 8 camera backpacks and cases designed around different size drones and quadcopters.
They’re not bound or restrictive to any particular brand or style of drone, but the different sizes do suit different models better than others.
In this review I discuss the DroneGuard BP 250, which is aimed toward the DJI Mavic series of drones (such as Mavic Pro, Mavic Pro Platinum, Mavic 2 Pro, Mavic 2 Zoom, and of course the Mavic Air).
Table of Contents
Lowepro DroneGuard BP 250 Specs
26 x 11 x 24 cm (10.23“ x 4.33” x 9.44“)
29 x 17 x 47 cm (11.41“ x 6.69” x 18.5“)
Camera Compartment Dimensions:
26 x 11 x 24 cm (10.23“ x 4.33 ” x 9.44“)
Top Compartment Dimensions:
26 x 9 x 20 cm (10.23“ x 3.54” x 7.87“)
Laptop Compartment Dimensions:
26 x 3 x 38 cm (10.23“ x 1.18” x 14.96“)
Fits up to a 15” Laptop (Such as a Macbook or thin Notebook. My 15″ Gaming Laptop was a very very tight fit).
Tablet Compartment Dimensions:
19 x 2 x 22 cm (7.48“ x 0.78” x 8.66“)
Fits up to 10” Tablet
1.34 kg (2.95lbs)
The Lowepro DroneGuard BP 250 is made from what seems to be Lowepro’s light weight go-to materials*, with a main point of difference being the compression molded FormShell™ soft armored lid on the main compartment to help protect your gear.
It’s very light but also feels very tough – definitely different to what you usually find on backpacks!
*The Lowepro Slingshot is made out of a similar fabric.
Build & Appearance
The LowePro DroneGuard BP 250 appears to be styled to display its rigid and more ‘tactical’ style feature set, rather than to be mistaken as a more street fashionista type backpack.
It’s a bag that you can tell right from the very get go that it’s ready for an adventure, designed to take anywhere with you – a bag that wouldn’t shy away from encountering a bit of dirt.
It is slim and not in any way bulky, a great size for a commute, while still being able to fit a large number of things inside. I much prefer a slim bag than a padded-out bulky one. The DroneGuard BP 250 doesn’t take up any extra room than it should.
It only comes in one colour style – black with a geometric style camo pattern to keep it interesting (note: in different light the grey can look more of a blue or purple), this bag not only looks pretty cool but is quite light as well – Lowepro have definitely taken weight in to consideration.
Although I’m not the greatest fan of the pattern, there’s plenty more about the BP 250 that I like, which makes me happily accept their decision with the styling.
The FormShell™ compression moulded lid is the signature piece on the outside of the DroneGuard BP 250. It is certainly a point of difference separating the DroneGuard series of bags over the rest of Lowepro’s line up, and the FormShell™ is styled differently across the whole DroneGuard series!
You’ll find FormShell™ tends to only appear on their more adventure orientated camera bags.
Much of the other materials on the DroneGuard BP 250 are Lowepro’s standard issue – soft, functional, simple, and lightweight.
They’re not making any claims that their materials are super this or anti-that. Nice, simple, purposeful and affordable, keeping the price tag on this bag at a much neater lower range.
As much as I do appreciate the top end boutique or unique materials on various high-end camera bags, sometimes simplicity is best. Nothing more, nothing less, just a great solution to a need without cutting corners.
As mentioned earlier the FormShell™ lid is designed to be protective without compromising on weight. It’s a super-light, rigid piece of protection layered over the top of your gear.
This is in hope that if you were to bump or slam the DroneGuard BP 250 in to anything, your wonderful little piece of flying technology doesn’t cop a the full force of the shunt.
What I also found handy is that the FormShell™ lid that adorns the DroneGuard BP 250 can double as a launching pad if your ground surface isn’t ideal, such as it being an uneven rocky surface, soft sand or if the grass is too tall. It’s not the easiest thing to land your drone on it, but it can be done!
Designed and stitched across the front surface of the bag and on top of the FormShell™ lid are subtle tactical points to help clip on or attach different accessories or pouches.
Situated on the left back strap of the DroneGuard BP 250, you’ll find a handy phone pouch built in that’s large enough to fit an iPhone 11 or Samsung Galaxy S9 (around 150mm/5.9″), but sadly not big enough to fit an iPhone 11 Pro Max (158mm/6.2″). It’s still handy if you don’t trust your pockets while on an adventure somewhere, or doing some wild crazy stuff with your drone tailing you.
You’ll find the back straps to be relatively comfortable and the back of the bag has nice thick padding to help with comfort while wearing it.
It sits nice and snug on your bag and I didn’t find that it moves around much. If fully loaded and you find it heavy, the built in waist and chest straps help shift the weight down your body to assist with the load.
On both sides of the DroneGuard BP 250 you’ll find discrete bottle pockets which, thanks to clever elastic, tuck away and help to not get snagged on anything while not being used.
Now, if you know the Mavic series of drones, you’ll know they fold up to the size of a water bottle (or Canon 24-70 f/2.8) so you can generally use most other camera bags.
[Related: Mavic Pro vs Mavic Pro 2 vs Mavic Pro Zoom]
I know since I did for a while too (wow what a wild child), but it was never an ideal solution – the main compartments are often far better suited for large solid built cameras, or there’s not enough dividers supplied to be able to create the much needed smaller sections, or just generally they don’t provide what I deem as sufficient long term protection of a rather fragile device.
The Lowepro DroneGuard BP 250 takes all of this in to consideration. In fact, I found that there are so many dividers I actually had to remove some and keep them aside!
I found the amount of organisation and customisation options fantastic, as I can now pack in all my random bits and pieces without requiring the use of other small pouches or bags.
Provided within the main compartment are a large number of dividers of different sizes and thicknesses. Also included is a handy elastic strap to ensure your Mavic doesn’t move about, and a padded block that sits nicely between the sticks of your controller to help keep them safe and secure.
Lowepro definitely considered the type of accessories or extra bits and pieces that you tend to have and require, and packed in a bunch more subtle little pockets too within the other compartments.
The DroneGuard BP 250 comes equipped with a CradleFit™ pocket to securely store a 15” laptop and up to a 10” tablet.
Inside the top two pockets you’ll find multiple interior organisers and pouches to keep your other smaller or slim items in order, such as another mobile phone, passport, wallet, cards, pens, booklets, etc.
I did, however, have trouble fitting in my 15″ Slim Gaming Laptop, so bear that in mind – it’s advertised as fitting a 15″ laptop, but that does greatly depend on physical size and shape.
Attached to the inside of the main FormShell™ lid there is a removable organisation panel with a little strap. This is handy for storing spare propellers, pens, cables, or anything else you may want quick access to while keeping your bag closed.
Below I’ve pictured it without propellers, sorry about that, but alas I’m sure you can use your imagination this time…
I was surprised at just how much I could jam in to the LowePro DroneGuard BP 250, and the main compartments have enough space and dividers to rearrange it in a multitude of ways.
The photo above isn’t even maximum capacity either (if you can probably tell by my images below) – it’s just all the drone stuff I own.
The ‘wells’ are deep enough to double stack items too, such as a lens filter case on top of the Mavic for instance!
Within the two upper compartments you’ll easily fit a number of other things you may need on a day trip away. There’s plenty of extra space for more devices and extra daily items such as a jacket, shirt, laptop cables, or even a camera!
I also just found out more recently that my Sony A7 iii with a Tamron 28-75 f/2.8 fits in there. It was not an ideal “forever” solution for that, but hey it fit when I needed it to!
Just because it’s named DroneGuard doesn’t mean you cannot reconfigure it for your camera gear.
In addition, just because it’s been designed around a Mavic Pro doesn’t mean that other small drones or devices can’t be used in it. Arrange it however you please, fit it out however you need. Just don’t try and fit a Phantom or anything of that size in there!
You’ll easily fit a Spark, Mavic Mini (review), Parrot Anafi, Autel Robotics EVO, and various other small FPV/Racing drones. Use the Mavic Pro as your reference, and that will help you see if it’s right for you.
Ease of Use/Comfort
The shoulder straps on the BP 250 are comfortable and the bag sits firmly and securely on your body. All of the clips are a simple plastic and are quite easy to clip in and release, with the straps sliding through to adjust quite easily.
The grab handle on the top is easy to find and supports the weight, and it doesn’t feel as though it’d fray or break over time.
Due to the shape of the front lid the bag doesn’t like to stand up by itself when fully loaded, unfortunately. I found I had trouble standing the DroneGuard BP 250 up on the ground and not having it topple over.
The interior dividers remove easily and stick without problem, so all in all it’s a pretty simple and straightforward affair. There are no annoying or tricky features, nothing snags, and everything just functions as it should!
Value for Money
I feel that Lowepro fill an important section of the camera bag market. They release products that suit those of us who want an affordable carrying solution, while still providing high quality options.
They also provide a huge variety of sizes and styles for every need, from small point and shoot camera pouches, all the way up to full size roller bags. From tactical utilitarian to fashionable street styles, light weight hiking to hardened adventure packs, and everything in between.
So when I think of Lowepro, I also think of great value. Their larger premium bags can still fetch a pretty penny, but you’ll always find something that fits your budget. Not everybody wants to spend a large sum on a bag, and there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that either.
Photography is already an expensive hobby and definitely an expensive industry as a whole. So why not save a bit in one area, so you can spend more elsewhere if you need to? The DroneGuard BP 250 doesn’t shy away from this mentality at all, at the time of writing this article it is priced well under $200.
For the level of storage capacity and nice build quality on this bag, I find that a great price. Potentially leaving you with something in your wallet to buy lunch, or a new set of propellers.
Lowepro DroneGuard BP 250 Review | Conclusion
All in all, it’s a great solution for my Mavic Pro and all associated with it. It’s comfortable, a great price, and from a well known and supported brand.
There are a couple of small things that bug me with it as I explained above, but there are ways to deal with these minor issues.
Lastly, I feel that the DroneGuard BP 250 could do with some other style variations – not everyone would be a fan of the geometric camo, especially when it sometimes looks more blue or purple in different light. I personally would probably have selected an alternative colour if it was on offer.
- It’s a great size, plenty of space for my full Mavic Pro kit and more
- The overall style and comfort
- Simple lightweight materials
- It doesn’t stand upright very well
- Lacking of variety in styles