Just stumbled on this great article on a site called Shotkit. The writer asked 75 shooters what bag they used, and wrote a comprehensive article about it, and it’s great.
I’ve been quite into bags lately, and I’ve actually got two on order (inexpensive but promising-looking Ebay ones coming from Asia somewhere), and there are so many nice ones out there. Unfortunately, a lot of very attractive bags cost hundreds of dollars, but there are some solid choices out there that come in under $100, or even under $50, and, perhaps surprisingly, some are represented on this list.
I do think that once you go over a certain price threshold, a lot of what you’re paying for is aesthetics, or even the brand name. For instance, I love the look of ONA bags, and I understand they can’t be cheap to make, but oof, some of the prices are well out of my range – perhaps not overpriced, but not in my range. But the name seems pretty well known, and a lot of people are willing to pay, and so it goes. (Funny thing – I couldn’t remember the name ONA as I wrote this, so I googled “expensive camera bags” and the number 1 result was their beautiful Brooklyn bag.)
So give it a look, and I’ll update this site with my findings on my own purchases when I receive and test them. I can also compare them to my current bags – I’ve currently got a Lowepro Slingshot 102 which still does nicely as a smaller bag, as well as a Manfrotto Advanced Tri Backpack (in the medium size), which I really dig, and helps when I need to take more than a single DSLR and a few lenses. I’ve actually got a few more, but they’re out of rotation and haven’t been used in ages.
This post is actually partly just a bookmark for myself, so I can find this list months from now when I will surely want to read it at some point.