Two backpacks and two messenger bags make the base for the new Manfrotto Pro Light Bumblebee line, with prices ranging from $129.99 to $279.99.
The new collection from Manfrotto aims to allow users to stay comfortable in the harshest of conditions despite high temperatures, extreme cold or high humidity. This family introduces Manfrotto’s unique-to-the-market breathable harness system that greatly reduces photography gear fatigue, allowing image makers to cover more ground and locate the best spots for the perfect shots.
In fact, when it comes to the new Manfrotto Bumblebee backpacks, they are designed to take stress and heat off the shoulders, neck and lower back and feature Manfrotto’s state-of-the-art AirSupport breathable harness and back panel, adjustable sternum support, shaped hip and waist support systems. Like the backpacks, the messengers’ body-gripping fit and 3-point AirSupport harness system is breathable and perfect for prolonged outdoor use.
Inside, the bags’ innovative designs safeguard the latest professional equipment options. The renowned Camera Protection System (CPS) dividers Manfrotto has been using in its bags takes extra care of camera bodies and lenses. They are fully adjustable and built to distribute weight evenly and avoid tension to the body.
The removable Manfrotto CPS insert safeguards equipment right at the heart of the pack and keeps it organized with the efficiency of a portable studio. For example, the top of the line Bumblebee-230 PL backpack protects a gripped DSLR with a 70-200/2.8 lens attached and 10 additional lenses or an attached 400/2.8 with five additional lenses. In video configuration, it protects a disassembled modular camcorder like the Canon C100 with numerous lenses & accessories. It also fits a 17” laptop in its own padded compartment.
The Bumblebee-130 PL backpack keeps a high-end CSC or a DSLR safe with a 70-200/2.8 lens attached and eight additional lenses or an unattached 400/2.8 with three additional lenses. In video configuration, it protects disassembled modular camcorders like a SONY FS-5. It also fits a 15” laptop in its own padded compartment.
The entire internal space in these bags is padded to protect camera gear but can be also configured to accommodate accessories and personal gear as well. The main zipper comes with four pullers, which can be divided by a stopper into a top and lower compartment. Just open the top zipper for rapid access to frequently used contents from above.
A smart NeverLose tripod connection secures both longer and shorter tripods on the side of the pack. The connection straps are stitched in the side pocket and can be tucked away when not in use for a tidier appearance and to prevent straps getting lost.
The bigger Bumblebee-230 PL also features a lens pouch located in the waist belt. When not in use, the pouch can be flattened by tightening the webbing strap. (This feature is not available in Bumblebee-130 PL).
Manfrotto’s new Bumblebee Messengers have, claims the company, significantly raised the bar for their category: a combination of flawless design and reliable performance, they meet all the needs of demanding professionals who travel light and fast.
Despite their compact size, they hold a substantial amount of professional gear. The bigger Bumblebee M-30 PL Messenger protects a DSLR with a 70-200mm/2.8 lens attached and three additional lenses, a handheld gimbal (such as a DJI Osmo) and a 15” laptop in their own padded compartments, with all the necessary accessories. The Bumblebee M-10 PL Messenger keeps a CSC/DSLR safe with a 24-70/4 lens attached and two additional lenses (including 70-200/2.8) and a handheld gimbal (such as a DJI Osmo) and a 13” laptop in their own padded compartments, with all the necessary accessories. It can also carry a full set DJI Mavic plus the Osmo gimbal camera.
These bags introduce the XtraSecure handheld gimbal-carrying solution – a stretchable band that holds the gimbal’s moving parts so it can be taken out quickly. The area can also be used as a traditional lens compartment if there is no gimbal in the bag.
Manfrotto’s Bumblebee Messengers feature a secure silent quick-access flap. When shooting in quiet environments (e.g. during a ceremony), users can apply the NoiseFree Velcro silencer to keep a low profile. The broad front organizer keeps everything on hand. There are two bungee cord straps to hang a small tripod, monopod or selfie pole, which are also protected by the front flap. The Bumblebee Messengers can hold a gripped DSLR body when you take out the laptop from its compartment.
All the bags of the Bumblebee collection come with a DuoFace sun/rain cover to protect from rain, reflect sunlight and keep the gear cool and dry all day long.
Before closing, a little bit of history: Manfrotto Pro Light bags have a familiar look, which reveals their Kata origins. In fact, the Kata brand, from Israel, was merged into Manfrotto back in 2014. Kata vanished from the market, but its dependable and durable models, some of the lightest bags in the market, continue to exist, under the name Manfrotto. It’s from that time the introduction in the line of bags of the CPS (Camera Protection System), a Manfrotto developed protection system that provides a thick layer of structured, shock-absorbing core sectional dividers that safely cushion the equipment. It’s the sum of both parts that makes the new Pro Light Bumblebee from Manfrotto so interesting as a solution.