Sunday, December 04, 2005

caring for your EOS 350D / Rebel XT

Still haven't bought a bag for your camera?
Want a -really- good way to protect your investment?
Get a Kata R-103.
I have it since October 2005. I've travelled through south india for 11 days - in 'sleeper class' train compartments, crowded streets, trekked through the jungle surrounding the periyar lake with the following stuff in this bag -
Canon EOS 350D, a Canon 50mm f/1.8 lens, a Canon 75-300mm telephoto lens, a Tamron 18-200mm lens, Canon Speedlite 580EX flash, 4 rechargable 2500 milli-amp-hour NiMH AA cells, Nokia cell phone charger, NiMH battery charger, an IBM T42p Thinkpad laptop, laptop charger, my ebook and music library on a spool of 10 DVDs, a charger for the Canon camera NB2LH battery, a Sony portable Discman, an Apple iPod nano 4G (there were 9 more people in our gang, so we needed multiple music playing devices), a portable travelpod for the smaller Kodak DX6490, a larger Hansa tripod for the 350D, Apple earbuds, Shure e3c canalphones, Shure e2c canalphones, a full set of sleeves for the e2c and the e3c, cables for hooking the ipod to the laptop, a 25-in-1 memory card reader, a Nokia 6600 cellphone for continuous bluetooth->GPRS connectivity on my laptop, a kensington laptop cable lock, ethernet cables, a couple of paperbacks and a bunch of other small knickknacks like chewing gum and mints ..... so, the bag although devoid of all the equipment in this snapshot, has much more room than you can see!

The bag is made from military standard nylon that is ACTUALLY dust resistant! I've lugged it through a jungle - and not a speck of dust on it yet. It seems to be very shock resistant - Kata should know this kinda stuff well - they make bulletproof vests and other such equipment for the Israeli army!!!

The ergonomics is superb for a person who is 170-180 cms in height. It has full 5 point adjustment, external straps for lashing up tripods to the backpack shell, a really comfortable shoulder 'wrap' underneath the shoulder straps.

The bag is the most ruggedly built bag I have ever seen - perhaps with the exception of the Lowepro Dryzone (but who needs something that -heavy- unless one is going kayaking with camera equipment and there is a danger of submersion.) The Kata R-103 comes with a all weather raincoat that is reflective on one side for sun protection and is black on the other for the rains.

I managed to lose one half of the waist strap as it came off the sliplock when I took it off - so I wrote them asking about what I should do next. I expected a mail giving the part number and a URL where I could order it online. But guess what - I received an email from them within half an hour asking me for my shipping address and phone number - saying that a replacement waist strap would be on the way immediately the next day. Thank you Bellina Israel - Kata should be proud of people like you!

This is some of the best customer service I have seen yet.

I haven't been paid by anyone to write this. This backpack is just a showcase of very good design and engineering. And if Kata is listed on your local stock exchange - you should go and buy some stock. I would. Posted by Picasa

No comments: