Jon Huxley reviews a roller case for your camera kit
Manfrotto Pro Light Reloader 55 at a glance
- Water repellent
- TSA-approved combination zipper lock
- 55x35x23cm external dimensions
- Price £299.99
- Website www.manfrotto.co.uk
Whether you are jetting off abroad or just planning a weekend in the UK, a roller case can be one of the most secure and convenient ways of transporting your kit. Manfrotto’s Pro Light Reloader 55 has just about everything you would want in a roller case, with enough room to fulfil most photographers’ needs.
Wildlife photographers will find that many telephoto-lens types will fit inside with a camera body attached. In its product photos, Manfrotto proudly shows a Canon EOS-1D X with a 400mm f/2.8 lens attached. There is no problem fitting in 70-200mm f/2.8, 300mm f/2.8 or the Tamron or Sigma 150-600mm zoom lenses. You can easily fit two or three enthusiast camera bodies and five to six lenses, depending on your set-up. The padded dividers make the case easy to reconfigure, and if you are travelling light you could even use half the case for clothes and half for your camera kit. Pockets on the inside of the lid can be used to store documents, memory cards, batteries, chargers or any other small items you may need.
An internal compartment height of 48cm makes it possible to store a travel tripod internally. Larger tripods, such as Manfrotto’s popular 190 range, can be strapped on to the side of the case.
Manfrotto Pro Light Reloader 55 – key features
The bag meets the carry-on dimensions of most international airlines, including easyJet.
An easily accessed outer pocket can store a laptop and a tablet.
An outside pocket and some straps allow larger tripods to be attached securely on to the side of the case.
Manfrotto Pro Light Reloader 55 – our verdict
With a wide wheelbase and reasonably large wheels, the case is well balanced, even when being pulled over bumpy pavements. The thick padding and ridged shell are reassuringly protective and, as you would expect from Manfrotto, the case is superbly made. It may seem expensive, but it still represents good value for money, particularly if you travel frequently with your camera.
SCORE: 5 out of 5
What is a TSA lock?
The Manfrotto Pro Light Reloader 55 features a Travel Sentry Approved (TSA) combination lock. The lock can be set to whatever four-digit combination you wish, adding a good level of security to the main compartment. When baggage inspectors are required to inspect your bag they can do so by using a TSA key. These are master keys used in most countries that can open the lock, without having to use bolt cutters to break it. When closed, your original numerical code is still valid. The lock isn’t going to stop anyone walking off with your bag, but it will help keep it secure in transit and deter petty theft of the contents.