OConnor has announced what looks to be a very robust Camera Assistant bag. OConnor is not a name that is normally synonymous with equipment bags, as they are best known for making high-quality tripods.
The Camera Assistant bag (not the most original name, but hey it works) features a water- and dust-resistant liner with stuff pockets, the bag is also designed without any internal seams and features a hinged lid that can be left open on set without putting sensitive equipment at risk.
The Camera Assistant bag is constructed of high-quality, water-resistant materials and features a tough, wipeable outer fabric and a double-skin lining. For heavier loads D-ring fixing points on the front and back enable users to carry the bag Sherpa-style using the leather strap provided, which is claimed to spread the weight of the bag over the carrier’s back rather than concentrating it on the shoulders. The Camera Assistant bag also fits into a standard Pelicase 1620 travel case.
On the inside, the Camera Assistant bag includes seven heavy-duty dividers with double-sided fastening strips, designed to secure all OConnor tripod heads and accessories. Additional fixing points hold accessories such as pan bars and camera plates, and durable clear-mesh pockets offer storage for additional gear. In a nice touch, the Camera Assistant bag also includes an extra pouch that can be carried on the user’s belt or fixed externally to the main bag.
The bag isn’t exactly lightweight at 12.7 lbs (5.8 kg). By the time you put a bunch of kit inside it, you may not want to be carrying it around on your shoulder.
According to OConnor they worked closely in consultation with end users to design what they are calling “The ultimate unit bag.” Crew members of Ember Films, who served on the principal photography team for the “Planet Earth II” television series and who also work on feature films, commercials, and drama series all over the world, offered input into the essential features necessary for a bag that could serve in the most extreme on-location environments. The Camera Assistant Bag was field tested in some of the harshest and most remote environments on earth, including Africa, Brazil, and Nepal.
The bag is now available for $356.25 USD. It looks like real competition for the ARRI Unit Bags and offerings from companies such as CineBags.
• Ext. Dims. 22 x 14.5 x 13.5″(57 x 37 x 34 cm)
• Main Int.cavity dims 18 x 12 x 10.5 in(46 x 30 x 27 cm)
• Weight 12.7 lbs (5.8 kg)