Mindshift Gear, one of the premier camera backpack companies for outdoor photographers, just launched their biggest backpack yet, the Backlight Elite 45L.

As its name implies, the capacity is a whopping 45 liters, which puts it up there in the category of truly adventurous, even overnight hikes and backpacking trips. Whether you’re a big-gun telephoto lens wildlife photographer, or a multi-camera video or timelapse shooter, this backpack probably has enough space for all your gear, and more!

Think Tank Photo Press Release

SANTA ROSA, CALIFORNIA – Get deeper into the backcountry with the MindShift BackLight® Elite 45L backpack from Think Tank Photo. 45 liters of internal volume provides ample room for a combination of photo/personal gear and dedicated laptop/tablet. External attachment points accommodate adventure equipment such as a static rope, set of axes, snowboard/skis, and of course, a tripod.

Weather-resistant zippers and materials protect your gear when trekking in extreme environments. And like the other BackLight backpacks, rear-panel access adds security when traveling since your camera gear is protected behind your back. Built “Mountain Tuff” for protection against the elements, the BackLight Elite 45L features YKK® AquaGuard® zippers and waterproof/tearproof sailcloth, robust lumbar padding, and a quick-dry back panel for increased ventilation. Elite outdoor photographer, Dan Carr, rigorously tested the pack claiming, “The Backlight Elite 45 is the rugged companion for every adventure.”

“We paid special attention to the needs of backcountry photographers while designing the Elite 45L,” said Doug Murdoch, Think Tank CEO and Lead Designer. “In design, fit, protection, and durability, the BackLight Elite 45L stands up to the demands of outdoor photo expeditions like no other bag we have ever released.”

Key Features

  • Storm-resistant construction with YKK® AquaGuard® zippers and waterproof/tearproof Sailcloth
  • Superior Fit: Robust lumbar padding, hip-hugging waist belt, quick-dry back panel, and foam ridges for increased ventilation
  • Back and top panel access to all of your camera gear, allowing you to work out of your bag without getting your harness dirty or wet
  • Aluminum internal frame supports the load and keeps it in place
  • Dedicated compartments fit up to a 17” laptop and a 10” tablet
  • Meets most international and U.S. carry-on requirements*
  • Advanced Airflow: Dual-density, honeycomb mesh shoulder straps
  • Includes tripod/monopod mounting system on front or side
  • Trekking capacity! Front pockets totaling 17L carry personal gear for a day’s outing: extra layers, a jacket, food, etc.
  • Hydration reservoir ready (reservoir not included)
  • 2 large water bottle pockets with cinch cord fit 32 oz. water bottles
  • Snowboard or ski carry with tuck-away, protected edge lash straps
  • Top-lid converts into a belt pack with the removable waist belt
  • Waterproof, heavy-duty Tarpaulin base
  • Seam-sealed, brown colored rain cover blends in with the environment
  • Removable camera compartment with emergency shoulder straps to avoid gate check
  • Removable waist belt for ease when traveling
  • Expandable capacity on all five sides with daisy chain, ice axe loops, and additional lash points
  • Compatible with the MindShift Tripod Suspension Kit, Filter Nest/Hive & Switch Case

What Fits

  • Sample gear packs:
    Nikon D3S attached to 70–200mm f/2.8, SB-910 Speedlight, 105mm f/2.8 Macro, Sigma 35mm f/1.4 ART, 50 f/1.4, Filter Nest Mini, 24–70mm f/2.8, 14–24mm f/2.8
  • Canon 1DX attached to 70–200mm f/2.8, GoPro Hero 5, DJI Mavic Pro, Mavic Controller, 24–70mm f/2.8, 16–35mm f/2.8, 90mm f/2.8 TSE
  • Sony A7R II attached to 24–70mm f/2.8 GM, GoPro Hero 5, DJI Mavic Pro, Mavic Controller, Filter Nest Mini, A7R II attached to 16–35mm f/4


Exterior: For superior water resistance, all exterior fabric has a durable water-repellant coating, plus the underside of the fabric has a polyurethane coating. It also has highest quality weather-resistant YKK® AquaGuard® zippers, high-performance Sailcloth, 420D rip-stop nylon, 320G UltraStretch mesh, ribbed and perforated dual-density foam, 350G airmesh, honeycomb airmesh, perforated closed-cell foam, heavy-duty nylon tarpaulin, nylon webbing, 3-ply bonded nylon thread.

Interior: 200D polyester, hexa-mesh pockets, high-density closed-cell foam, PE board reinforcement, 3-ply bonded nylon thread.

Complete Product Specifications

Exterior Dimensions (travel mode*): 13” W x 23.5” H x 8” D (33 x 59.7 x 20.3 cm)
Camera Compartment: 11.4” W x 19.3” H x 6.8” D (29 x 49 x 17.3 cm)
Laptop Pocket: 11.2” W x 16.1” H x 1”D (28.5 x 41 x 2.5 cm)
Tablet: 0.6” W x 10.2” H x 0.6” D (27 x 26 x 1.5 cm)
Total Volume: 45L
Weight: 3.9–7.0 lbs. (1.8–3.2 kg)

About Think Tank Photo

Headquartered in Santa Rosa, California, Think Tank Photo is a group of designers and professional photographers focused on studying how photographers work and developing inventive new carrying solutions that meet their needs. They are dedicated to using only the highest quality materials and design principles, and employing materials that are environmentally benign.

Mindshift Backlight Elite 45L Availability

The Backlight Elite 45L will be available from $399. The main camera ICU is included, plus the topmost compartment and waist belt are removable and can be converted into a lightweight “fanny pack” setup for running around with a few accessories if you want to shoot without the rest of the backpack.