Let’s face it. Camera slings, straps, wrist systems aren’t for everyone. Some of us, me included, prefer to keep their gear around their waist. This can come in the form of photography belt systems such as a camera waist pack.
Manfrotto Lifestyle Street is a great choice for mirrorless or smaller camera systems. I speak from experience when I say you won’t regret using this system.
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What Is a Waistpack?
Since they’re small or medium-sized, they can’t carry everything your backpack would. But for anything smaller than a budget DSLR, it’s perfect. You can also carry a lens or two, plus a few other items like memory cards and batteries.
If this is enough for a few hours, or even a few days, then this is a great camera carrier system. The big benefit is the weight is distributed around your hips and waist, and your center of gravity.
There is another way to carry this waist pack, and that is slung over the shoulder.
Who Are Manfrotto?
Manfrotto needs no introduction. Most of, if not all of, the best and reliable tripods are made by this Italian company. Since 1972 in Cassola, Italy, Manfrotto has been a guiding light for high-quality photography accessories across the globe.
It all started with Lino Manfrotto, a photo reporter in Bassano del Grappa for Il Gazzettino and Il Giornale di Vicenza. His first-hand experience with photography gear and equipment showed him the items were large, cumbersome and heavy.
Together with a friend, he created a light stand that gained the respect and attention of a Swiss distributor. His garage became a workshop, where booms and other stands were mulled over and created.
Over the next 47 years, they grew and created and researched and designed many products that would bring them into the limelight today.
They have proved themselves time and again with strong and continuous innovation, great design and extreme reliability. Research and revolution have been their guide, from tripods to international photography markets.
To keep the high-quality standards, every single product piece is made in Italy. This makes their items a little more expensive. But you really get what you pay for.
Design, functionality, and technology are the things they recognize as pushing forth excellence in the photography world. And they are doing something right.
We can see this through their ever-increasing range of awards. In 2017 alone, they won the TIPA (Technical Image Press Association), iF (International Forum) Product Design Award and the Red Dot Design Award.
What Is the Lifestyle Street CSC Waistpack?
The Lifestyle Street Waistpack is a very versatile system for carrying your camera and extra gear. It can be worn in two different ways, as a sling bag or wrapped around your waist.
It’s top-loading, making it very easy to get to your equipment. The sloping zipper openings mean it opens wide while keeping your gear together.
The sturdy, main compartment is padded and comes equipped with the Manfrotto Protection System. Removable dividers allow you to modify your bag as you see fit.
It will work as a drone carrying kit, allowing a 9.7” iPad Pro tablet to sit behind it all. Hidden pockets allow you to keep cables locked away and organized. There is even a tripod connector on the undercarriage.
If you are looking for a compact, versatile and stylish camera bag, the Manfrotto Street camera Waistpack/Sling is a perfect choice.
What Is Included?
- Manfrotto Lifestyle Street camera waist pack
- 2 x Clever, removable dividers
- Removable shoulder pad
Manfrotto Lifestyle Street CSC Waistpack: Review
My first thoughts were an immediate ‘Wow!’. As far as Manfrotto go, they are a go-to company for me. I am in awe of the innovation, invention, and quality of all the products I had the pleasure to try.
From opening the waist pack, I liked the fact that they didn’t squash it to package and send it. It would have been easier, but it made the company seem very professional for doing so.
Inside was a well-designed card that served to keep the structure of the bag and a visual indicator of items you can place in the bag. The only thing I wasn’t crazy about was the army camouflage design on the inside.
From the color to the shape, I immediately loved it. It looked spacious without being too over the top. I was in the market for a waist bag (or photographer fanny pack).
I have tried the Canon Deluxe Gadget Bag 10EG which came with an extra waist strap. But, it was far too clunky and big to work with without causing discomfort.
The camera cube system can be easily removed for larger items, but the structure isn’t as strong. The two inside pockets at the front were very handy for memory cards and batteries. The other area at the back held books, notebooks, and an iPad.
One of the benefits of having the camera cube dividers is that it creates extra areas to organize things, such as cables. There is a front zippered pocket for easy access and two tripod loops at the bottom. More than enough for a full day’s shooting.
If this wasn’t enough, On the bottom part of the bag, a zippered pocket conceals a practical water bottle holder. Perfect for city trips while traveling for local street photography.
Build and Construction
The build of the Manfrotto Waist pack is very good. It stays stable and solid when empty or full. I have been using it almost daily, either crammed full of books, batteries, and my GR III. Other times it just has my Sony AR III, with FE 50mm F1.8 lens.
It doesn’t give me any indication of becoming misshaped or malformed, even when bursting. The bag is so well built and holds so much equipment its a little like Mary Poppin’s cloth bag.
It’s very easy to overfill it, which could be harmful if you do this continuously.
The zippers have been opened over 1000 times and show no wear at all. I usually take this as my daily bag for all sorts of things, including taking my son to the park.
His feet, drinks, food and general dirt have been all over it, and nothing stained it.
It’s water-resistant rather than being waterproof. this means you have a little time to get to shelter in case of heavy rainfall.
I imagine the scraps will begin to fray first – way before any other damage, but that is expected. The straps are going to encounter the majority of traction due to movement and from opening, and closing.
There is nothing to construct, just wrap it around your waist, close and tighten the straps. By loosening the straps, it will fit as a sling. This is how all the cool kids wear bum bags or photographer fanny packs.
It’s perfect. By far my favorite kind of bag for carrying and protecting one camera with lens, an extra lens or flash and tons of other stuff.
It will fit only one camera, a drone or can even be used as a cable and charger organizer if you already have a backpack.
In all honesty, I haven’t tried the tripod loops, but that’s a personal preference to my shooting style. They look like they could hold a decent weight without weighing the bag down too much.
It goes everywhere with me, as I can easily drop my keys, wallet and other small items that I hate having in my pocket. It’s a perfect camera carrier solution, but in reality, it’s more like a man pouch without the teenagers giggling behind my back.
What We Like
- Can be a camera waist pack or a Manfrotto sling
- Great color scheme
- Well built ergonomically
- Carries more than just a camera
- Loops to keep extra strap length from flapping around
- Removable strap padding
What We Don’t Like
- Doesn’t fit a high-end DSLR
- Army camouflage design on the inside
- No good for a camera body AND telephoto lens
Where to Buy It From
If you are looking for Manfrotto’s complete Lifestyle Street CSC range, check out the link here.
I like this bag because its something I was looking for, for a very long time. I have tried many different camera carrier systems, including the CADeN camera waistband system. Nothing seemed to work right.
The Manfrotto Lifestyle Street CSC Waistpack is almost perfect in its design, innovation, size, and quality. It comes in one color, which lucky for me is dark green. Many people are going to prefer than a usual blue, black or a more fantastical color.
As far as medium bags go, there is much you can fit in here. Not just camera equipment, but day to day things you don’t want to forget and can’t do without.
Some camera carrier systems don’t remember to include this in their design.
You, of course, can’t have everything. The bag is of a medium/small size, meaning it will fit a mirrorless system or point and shoot camera, with other items. You can fit a budget DSLR in there, but not much else.
No good for a camera body AND telephoto lens. and this is ok because it isn’t built for landscape photography. You’ll find a better use for this with street photography or travel photography. It’s called Lifestyle Street for a reason.
Some might be tempted to choose the Peak Design Everyday Sling 5L, but it isn’t as nice and costs almost twice the price.