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Sometimes it’s the most boring thing you buy, which ends up giving you the most satisfaction.
The Think Tank Logistics Manager 30 is one of those boring things.
It’s not a new fancy camera with loads of features. Neither is a new fast and sexy lens with a wide aperture.
No, it’s just a bag on wheels.
But what a bag!
At the time of writing this review, I’ve used and tested the Think Tank Logistics Manager 30 extensively for over 18 months in the Danish weather a.k.a. sun, rain (lots of rain), and snow.
And in this review, I’ll tell you why I consider this bag one of my most valued possessions.
First, let’s talk about the specs. I’ll expand on a lot of these features throughout the review:
- The bag has a highly customizable interior due to the high-quality and rigid dividers
- You can easily fit multiple camera bodies, lenses, flash heads, batteries and power packs, tripods, and small light stands.
- It is possible to fit up to an 800mm f/4 lens (great if you’re a wildlife or sports photographer or videographer)
- There are a lot of exterior pockets and interior pockets for accessories and cables to keep things well protected and well ordered.
- It is possible to secure a tripod or light stand on the side of the back with the included straps
- The bag has excellent reinforced protection against curbs and stairs
- The high-quality in-line skate wheels can easily be replaced
- The expandable front pocket can hold a 17″ laptop
- It comes with a sturdy and retractable handle
- There are multiple grab points for lifting
- The two lid straps hold the lid open at whatever angle you prefer
- There are lockable sliders plus a cable and lock included, which makes it possible to lock the bag to e.g. a lamp post or fence.
- The included rain cover covers the whole bag and there’s a hole for the handle.
- Molded plastic serial plate with the possibility of registering the serial number on the manufacturer’s website so that if the bag is lost, the number can be used to trace its owner.
- Limited lifetime warranty
The dimensions Think Tank Logistics Manager 30 is as follows:
- Internal (approximately 3600 cubic inches of storage):
- Width=13.75”/35 cm
- Height=27.5”/70 cm
- Depth=8.25”–10”/21-25 cm
- Exterior Dimensions:
- Width=15.75”/40 cm
- Height=30”/76 cm
- Depth=11.5”/29 cm
- 16–20 lbs (7.3–9.1 kg) – it depends on which of the accessories you use
You can check the current price and read the reviews (hint: they agree with me) on Amazon here: Think Tank Photo Logistics Manager 30 – Rolling Gear Case.
Why I chose the Think Tank Logistics Manager 30 Roller Bag
Okay, so with all the specs out of the way, let me start by writing a little bit about why I chose this particular bag after doing extensive research.
The primary reason I chose this roller bag is that I don’t drive a car.
In other words, I’m dependant on public transportation, whenever I have a job for a client.
Because of this, I needed a bag, which was big and sturdy enough to hold all my heavy gear, but also small and portable enough, so that I can bring it with me on trains and buses, and the occasional taxi.
What I’ve found is that the Logistics Manager 30 ticks all those boxes.
The back easily fits all my heavy equipment like a couple of tripods and tripod heads, light stands, V-Mount Batteries, cables, and gaffers tape – don’t forget the gaffers tape!
What I do is that I then wear a backpack for my cameras and lenses and use the Think Tank Logistics Manager 30 for all my heavy gear and accessories.
This has proven to be an extremely versatile setup, that I’ve used professionally for approximately 18 months now.
Great build quality and protection
Taking public transportation with heavy gear is not fun if you don’t have the right gear for it. But the Think Tank makes it a breeze.
The bag is simply built to last and well designed. It feels like every time I bring it along, I find a new small detail, which just makes practical sense.
The retractable handle is of metal and hard plastic of some sort and has been able to stand being dragged around for 18 months with no signs of wear.
The bag itself is made from ballistic nylon and has a water-repellent (DWR) coating for light rain. The nylon fabric still holds up with no signs of holes, tears or bad seams.
The same can be said for the abrasion-resistant zippers, which – even though some of the pockets have been stuffed to the limit from time to time – still shows no sign of wear and tear.
The high-quality in-line skate wheels make dragging the heavy load about into a soft and pleasant experience. And even though the wheels are easy to replace if needed, there are many hours left in the original set I still have on mine.
The heavy-duty and well-thought-out placement of multiple nylon grab points makes it easy to pick up the back and carry it upstairs, into a bus or throw it in the back of a car or taxi when needed. I do this every trip, and I still see no signs of wear and tear on the seams.
One of my favorite parts of the exterior design of the Think Tank Logistics Manager 30 is the extra tall skid plates. The skid plates offer nice protection not only for curbs but also for stairs.
Because I often have to carry my bag up some stairs into a bus or when I transition from a metro station to a train platform, these plates have saved my gear and my bag more times than I can count.
Great protection against the elements
If the weather turns really sour, as it usually does here in Denmark, you can quickly pull out the included rain cover (if you remembered to bring it).
I’ve used the rain cover in both heavy rain and heavy snowfall with great success.
And even though the sidewalk was all slush and snow, the bottom of the back didn’t let any of my gear get wet.
In short, I trust this back with my gear in all kinds of weather – even the one in Denmark!
The interior of the Logistics Manager 30 is highly customizable due to the many dividers you get together with the bag.
In fact, you get so many dividers, that I didn’t know where to put all the extras when I had decided on a compartment division that worked for me. So I’ve stoved them away somewhere in my basement, and I couldn’t find them. That’s also why you don’t get to see all the extra dividers in my photos.
The dividers are reinforced and can stand the weight of some heavy gear. I don’t have an exact number, but they can easily hold cables for lighting, V-lock batteries and more.
The velcro on the dividers is of very good quality and sticks to the interior sides of the bag like super glue as it should.
It can get quite frustrating when you have to design your interior because as soon as the velcro catches the sides it sticks and holds on tightly.
This is by no means a fault – quite the opposite – but I did use up my share of cuss words for the day when I put together my setup.
But I wouldn’t have it any other way, because it is because of this kind of quality, that I don’t mind trusting this bag with all my gear.
All the nice little details
Some say the devil’s in the detail, but that’s not the case here with this… um… case.
As I’ve touched upon earlier, the Logistics Manager 30 is just a well-thought-out roller bag whichever way you choose to view it.
The internal mesh pockets are well placed and I use them for accessories like Sennheiser G3 micro port system, on-camera microphones, small cables (like HDMI and stuff), collapsible softboxes, clamps, and grids for my flexible Aladdin Bi-Flex LEDs.
Speaking of my flexible LEDs, I can even fit two of those and their protective cases in the bottom front pocket.
Another thing I really enjoy is the lid straps, which hold the lid open at whatever angle you prefer. This is so nice because it makes the lid with all the pockets so much easier command, and makes everything within reach from one side of the bag.
It is just one of those things, that I didn’t know I wanted until I got it. And now I appreciate it every time I open the bag.
Also, the in-built cable with a padlock is a nice feature, if you’re running and gunning it in the field because you can easily chain the bag to e.g. a lamp post or fence.
I realize it might sound like Think Tank paid me to do this review.
But that is not the case. I purchased this bag after extensive research, and that research has paid off.
Because in short, I love this bag.
The size and dimensions of this bag make it a perfect match if you want a lot of room for your heavy gear but can’t or won’t sacrifice portability.
The build quality is excellent and some of the best – if not the best – I’ve ever seen in a bag.
The nylon fabric and handles are tough!
The DWR coating protects against light rain, slush, and moisture. And if that isn’t enough the rain cover will protect against heavy rain and snow.
The skid plates help protects against curbs and stairs.
The wheels are tough but soft to the ground, which makes dragging this case along behind you a nice and quiet experience.
While I use it for my tripods, light stands, and other accessories and prefer to carry my camera and lenses on my bag, you can easily transform it to fit your needs due to the many reinforced dividers, which come with the bag.
And if you’re a wildlife photographer, sports videographer or just wants an excellent bag for your film gear, you’ll be happy to know, that the Think Tank Logistics Manager 30 can fit multiple camera bodies and long lenses. And you can even place a tripod on the outside of the room inside gets too tight.
I really don’t have anything bad to say about this bag.
But of course, yes, I wish it would fit in the overhead compartment of a plane. But that would mean that it had to be smaller. And I don’t want that.
And yes, sometimes I wish that I could fit more of my gear in this bag. But I can get bigger bags, which can do that. But that would make them less portable, and I also don’t want that.
In short, if you’re looking for a portable high-quality roller bag with lots of room for your video or photography gear then the Think Tank Logistics Manager 30 gets my highest recommendations.
So if you’re on the look-out for a portable and high-quality roller bag, you can check the current price on Amazon here: Think Tank Photo Logistics Manager 30 – Rolling Gear Case.
Myke Thompson is a freelance writer, screenwriter, and humorist based out of Los Angeles. When he’s not working on his own projects, he supports other artists as a creative manager in music, art, film, and television.