F-Stop Gear / Satori EXP Camera Backpack : a review by Dany Eid

F-Stop Gear / Satori EXP + ICU XL review by Dany Eid

Recently I was looking into a versatile camera backpack, for weekends and travel that can fit more than photography gear.

I ran into the Gura Gear Uinta, F-Stop , and MindShift Rotation 180 Professional bags.
The one(s) that attracted me the most was the F-Stop series, mainly the Loka UL and the Guru. What caught my attention in the F-Stop bags is that they are very well built, lightweight compared to normal backpacks, and very versatile due to their very smart and flexible ICU – Internal Camera Units – system.

Dany Eid, A lebanese fellow photographer, based in UAE, recently got his first F-Stop backpack : He chose their largest bag : the Satori EXP . Here is what he wrote about it :

” Finally i received my new SLR expedition backpack that fit all my photography equipments.
The Satori EXP mountain edition by F-Stop Gear is one of the best backpack in the market due to the ICU component system & durable quality.
I spent last 10 year buying different brands such ThinkTank, LowPro, Vanguard and many others, all of them are good in terms of quality but this bag is very unique. imagine that i have more bags than my wife collection 

One of the main issues that i had in the past, is to be able to carry my bag on board but due to the major airlines your not allowed to cross the limit size, so i had so many stories in the airports during my trips. it will cost you around 550 $ but its a lifetime investment with 20 years warranty

The internal ICU component + bag fit all my gear: 2 Nikon Body’s, 14-24, 24-70,70-200, 35m & Zeiss 85mm, also 25 filters type + 2 system (Formattech + Lee filter) around 8 EN-L batteries, ReallyGreatStuff BH-55 ballhead & so many accesories in different pockets.

You will find the reasons, why i decided to buy this 62 liters bag:

1- The company is f-stop and its people are very serious about designing and manufacturing highly versatile photography equipment packs for the wildlife, nature and landscape photographer who is hiking, boating, mountain biking or climbing far from civilization. If these are your favorite digital photography adventures, then you need f-stop’s Satori EXP Pack from its Mountain Series.

2- Its versatility begins with its size. At 62 liters, or 2.2 cubic feet (.062 cubic meter), it has room not only for plenty of photography equipment, but also camping gear, making additional packs unnecessary. F-stop has been able to design all that space into a footprint that is smaller than the legal limits for major airlines, so you can carry it onboard and store it in most overhead compartments. This also provides plenty of peace of mind knowing its not being run through the typical baggage-handling system.

3- As much as you can carry in f-stop’s Satori EXP backpack, it is also very comfortable, even after hours strapped to your back. Comfort begins with the lightweight Nylon 330 Double Rip-Stop Shell, which is also a deterrent to bad weather. For total protection, you can add f-stop’s optional seam-taped rain cover. Whatever your shape or size, the Satori EXP backpack will ride comfortably and remain well balanced with the belt and shoulder tension adjusters. The hip belt and shoulder straps are padded for added comfort, plus there is a sternum strap to make it easy to carry heavier loads.

4- A rugged exterior is definitely important in a photography equipment pack of this type, but what makes f-stop’s Satori EXP backpack such a winner is the clever way it has designed the internal storage system. The people at f-stop have created what they call the Internal Camera Unit, or ICU. There is a complete selection of ICUs in different sizes that fit inside the Satori EXP

5- Accessibility is also a prime attraction of the Satori EXP backpack. You can put your hands on any piece of photo equipment quickly by opening the back panel, which is secured with a heavy-duty YKK zipper. There’s no reason to leave your laptop or tablet behind, as the Satori has a padded sleeve that accepts 17” devices or smaller

6- The Satori EXP comes with a great number and variety of pockets, slots and mesh bags to hold filters, memory cards, card reader, cables, lighting accessories, light meter, GPS, batteries and all those small pieces of photo gear. Even after loading all that, there is still space for a first-aid kit, cell phone, keys and personal and business items. “

Dany Eid on Flickr


All Pictures in this post are taken by photographer Dany Eid.

One thought on “F-Stop Gear / Satori EXP Camera Backpack : a review by Dany Eid

  1. I recently did a tour to Arctic and manage to fall backwards onto the camera bag-pack on my back. I would never believe I could damage the lenses in such a way. (crushed a 24-70 and a 70-200 2.8) and I am now very careful how it lock towards the back and not only the bottom when you take-off the bag-pack.
    Any comments about the backside protection?


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