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Booq’s New Python Catch Bag Could Be the Low Key Camera Bag You’ve Been Looking For

By Anthony Thurston on May 24th 2015

More and more these days, I hear people complain about camera bags looking too much like camera bags. The thinking is that if you have a bag that looks like it is full of expensive camera equipment, you will become a more likely target for a thief.

While I am not so sure I agree with a low-key design being any sort of thief deterrent (I mean what sort of thief turns down any bag full of stuff?), perception is reality, so camera bag makers are rising to the challenge to create camera bags that don’t look like camera bags.

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One such bag is the new Python Catch from Booq. It is designed to look like your average messenger bag, but inside, it can hold up to 2 DSLRs, 4 lenses, and a 15″ MacBook Pro Retina. You also get all the various pockets and zipped compartments to hold random accessories and receipts that you would expect from a messenger styled bag.

The Python Catch comes with a nice reflective rain cover, giving you some added visibility when the light starts to get low. The bag is also luggage trolley compatible, making carrying these around an airport super easy.

Overall, this looks like another great addition to the low-key bag market and is sure to meet the needs of photographers looking to carry all their gear without drawing too much attention to themselves. The Python Catch is now available over on the Booq website for $295.

Anthony Thurston is a photographer based in the Salem, Oregon area specializing in Boudoir. He recently started a new project, Fiercely Boudoir to help support the growing boudoir community. Find him over on Instagram. You may also connect with him via Email.

Q&A Discussions

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  1. Dustin Baugh

    I think size is a bigger concern than what it looks like. Big bag has more chances of high dollar items, like a 15″ MacBook Pro Retina.

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  2. adam sanford

    You guys know I’m a big proponent of retrofitting old bags into camera bags, so I generally avoid bags that look the interior of a Bentley.

    That said, play the video and see one clear advantage of pre-made bags instead of homebrew — nice little touches. The foldable/stackable foam inserts are nice if you want to overload with small items. Sure, you can do those yourself or repurpose older inserts, but it’s a nice design feature.

    Still never buying this bag, though. Good review, Anthony.

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  3. Arnold Ziffel

    Stick a baby bottle in the side pocket and have a diaper sticking out of the top and you’re good to go.

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    • Thomas Horton

      A diaper bag would work. But you have to have someone with a baby with you in order to pull it off.

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  4. Phil Bautista

    It’s about the risk-to-reward ratio. If a bag looks like it holds expensive stuff (e.g. laptops, cameras, etc), it’s more likely to draw a thief’s attention because the potential windfall if they are successful makes it worth the risk. If the bag you carry just looks like it might be carrying clothes or documents, it won’t be as attractive to thieves cos who wants to spend time in the slammer for stealing a bag of laundry? Unfortunately for this bag, the only thing low-key about it is the color. My idea of low-key is getting a regular bag of your choice (knapsack, satchel, sling, messenger, etc) and stick an insert in it.

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    • Jim Johnson

      I have a friend who is a travel photographer. He had was robbed for his camera 3 times in one year. The next camera he got, he put brown, plastic packing tape on it to look like that was holding it together/keeping out light leaks. He also strategically put duck tape on the strap and his bag and used sand paper to rough up the tape. It looks like crap, like it is the most beat up camera ever even though it is a brand new D810.

      No one has ever tried to steal it.

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  5. Kesavan VBK

    Looks nice but I think I still prefer backpack to carry it with ease and the cost is abit pricey for me.

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  6. Jim Johnson

    I’m back and forth on this, but it’s not really about “theft deterrent”— I just don’t want anything too conspicuous whether it’s a large messenger bag or a camera bag. When I’m traveling, I just don’t want to stand out that much.

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  7. norman tesch

    i cant get past the cost. i have a backpack that is huge, padded straps. and no where near the cost. if people can car jack you any bag can be removed from your person. plus if does carry all that gear it will be heavy and everyone will know its a camera bag when you start pulling out a camera and changing lenses

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  8. J. Dennis Thomas

    Looks like a camera bag to me. It’s too padded to be anything else. Messenger bags don’t have that kind of bulk.

    I’m with you on the theft deterrent thing. Reminds of the people that say the Leica red dot attracts thieves. C’mon now, how many thieves are studying camera gear so that they can tell the Leicas from the Fujis? A thief is gonna steal whatever is easiest to snatch, be it a Leica M or a Canon Rebel.

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