Canon Professional Backpack RL PB-01 Review

Canon recently introduced its first, new and exclusive range of camera bags to their extensive family of camera gears and accessories. The range of camera bags by Canon, cater to all levels of photographers for their digital SLR and compact cameras collection. When I first read about the new range of Canon camera bags, I was impressed and keen to take a look at their professional series camera bags, especially the Canon Professional Backpack RL PB-01. I was looking for a heavy-duty camera backpack for my serious photography (and for my assignments too) needs!

1Dmk3 with 300mm f2.8, 70-200mm f4, 17-40mm f4 and 580ex2

The opportunity to test and review the Canon new camera bags came true and I had the Canon Professional Backpack RL PB-01 passed to me for review. Due to the nature of my full time job, I was only able to test it on the weekends. A serious enthusiast/professional photographer usually has a number of different types of camera bags to suit the needs for different occasions and photography shoot requirements. A professional photographer usually need (and will need) a professional camera backpack to put at least 2 camera bodies, a number of lenses (3-5 lenses) and photography accessories such as speedlites, extra batteries, storage cards etc. That’s where the Canon Professional Backpack RL PB-01 comes in handy and highly suitable for the professional photographer (or serious enthusiast photographer) in you.

Comfortable, thick and wide shoulder straps of the Canon Professional Backpack RL PB-01
15inch MBP fitted in nicely!

Let me share with you the pros, cons and thoughts on the Canon Professional Backpack RL BP-01 –


  • Shoulder straps paddings are thick, comfortable and wide.
  • There are many pockets to store photography accessories.
  • There is a top load opening to keep/take out your DSLR camera with lens attached.
  • Waterproof zips at side pockets.
  • 15inch laptop can fit in nicely.
  • A poncho to cover the bag in the event of rain.
  • There is a clip on the camera strap to lock the strap from becoming loose.
  • The professional backpack can carry up to 2 DSLR bodies (can put in 2 x 1D series bodies) and 7 lenses + accessories
  • Detachable waist strap paddings.
  • Comfortable and ergonomic back padding.
  • Hand-carry luggage size.
  • Can carry tripod and trekking poles.


  • Waist strap padding is not wide enough.
  • Hand strap on top of backpack is not thick enough.
  • No side hand straps.

The Canon Professional Backpack RL PB-01 is the size of a hand carry luggage [External Dimensions: (W x H x D) 350mm x 530mm x 320mm] and it should be suitable for hand carry luggage check in at major international airports [Changi Airport hand carry luggage size: 55cm (L) x 40cm (B) x 20cm (H)]. Do check with the respective airlines and airports for hand carry baggage size limits.

Top loading method to slot in your Canon DSLR with lens attached!
Check out the clip that helps to lock and prevent the strap from becoming loose!

Q: Which group of photographers is the Canon Professional Backpack RL PB-01 suitable for?

A: I think the Canon Professional Backpack RL PB-01 is highly recommended for

  • Sports / Wildlife / Outdoors photographers (with a possible camera setup combination such as 2 x 1D series DSLR bodies, 300mm prime lens, 70-200mm zoom lens, 17-40mm wide angle lens and tripod).
  • Wedding and Events Photographer.
  • Enthusiast photographer with a wide range of DSLR camera bodies and lenses combination.
  • Travel Photographer (on assignments).

In my personal and humble opinion, the Canon Professional Backpack RL PB-01 is a well thought out and well-designed photography professional backpack, especially in the areas of bringing out the most camera gears that a photographer needs without compromising the comfort of the photographer. While it may not be the most aesthetically beautiful and colourful backpack, I don’t think it is meant to be. The Canon Professional Backpack RL PB-01 is designed for the serious/professional photographers with a “work horse” backpack and you don’t need it to be fanciful at all.

I am currently on the look out (and researching) for a rolling (trolley) camera backpack. The introduction of the Canon Professional Backpack RL PB-01 gives me a good alternative for serious consideration in lieu of a rolling camera backpack. I would definitely consider the Canon Professional Backpack RL PB-01 when I am looking for a heavy-duty professional camera backpack.

On a side note, photographers do own a number of bags, from the small pouch to the mid size messenger bags, mid size backpack and professional backpack. There is something suitable for our various cameras setup and requirements. Sometimes, photography bags are never enough and only photographers will understand this unique photographers language and practices. That’s why, for the serious enthusiast and professional photographer, the Canon Professional Backpack RL PB-01 might be/is suitable and ideal for you the photographer.

If you are keen to own the Canon Professional Backpack RL PB-01, it is now available at a Retail Recommended Price of SGD $289.

* I would like to thank Canon Singapore and Ogilvy Public Relations for the opportunity to review the Canon Professional Backpack RL PB-01. *

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