We review a variety of backpacks here at Techaeris and mostly they’re your basic consumer tech type backpacks. Last year we had the chance to review a specialty backpack from Tenba, the Tenba Roadie. That backpack was designed for photographers on the go and it earned a 2016 Top Pick award. This year, Tenba is back with their new Cineluxe series of backpacks. They sent along the Tenba Cineluxe Backpack 21 for us to take a look at. This series of backpacks is intended for videographers but is also suited to photographers. We made no bones about how much we loved the Tenba Roadie and we’ll make no bones about our thoughts on the Tenba Cineluxe Backpack 21 either. So read on for the full review and see why the Tenba Cineluxe Backpack 21 is also taking home a Techaeris Top Pick award.
The Tenba Cineluxe Backpack 21 has the following features and specifications:
- Fast doctor bag opening
- Flex core dividers
- Protective pouch and wraps
- Small footprint
- Water resistant
- International carry-on compatible
- Shotgun Mic/accessory pocket
- Leather trimmed handle
- Rigid protective shell
- Lens Pillow with security strap
- Exterior: 1680 denier ballistic nylon with a durable water-repellent coating, seatbelt-grade webbing, TPU-coated waterproof bottom panel.
- Interior: Lightweight ripstop nylon and soft, brushed tricot.
- Hardware: YKK® zippers, welded steel D-rings, contoured zipper pulls, anodized aluminum opening frame.
- Weight: 5.5-6.6lbs
- Exterior Dimensions: 14W X 21H X 11D in. (36 X 53 X 28 cm)
- Interior Dimensions: 11W X 18H X 8.75D in. (28 X 46 X 22 cm)
What’s In The Box
- Tenba Cineluxe Backpack 21
- Documentation and warranty
First, let’s clear up something right off the bat here. This is not a tech backpack. You’re not going to find space for laptops, tablets, and smartphones. While you certainly can find somewhere to tuck some of those things in, this isn’t specifically designed for that. The Tenba Cineluxe Backpack 21 is made for camera gear, specifically for video gear but it works great for DSLR’s and mirrorless cameras as well.
Along both sides of the Cineluxe Backpack you’ll find nice sturdy YKK zippers that open up into some slim storage pockets which are handy for cables, mics, small tripods, and accessories. When you stand the Tenba Cineluxe Backpack 21 up, you have a nice sturdy handle should you want to carry it like a backpack. Laying it down on its bottom you also have another sturdy handle which makes it feel more like a duffle bag.
The shoulder straps are amazingly padded with not only a chest strap but a waist strap and side bolsters as well, much like the Tenba Roadie. Tenba really knows how to make their bags comfortable and rugged. Every single piece of material used on this bag just screams premium and made with love. There is a strap on the back that can be used to slip over the handle of rolling luggage should you need to do that.
The back of the Tenba has their Air-Flow system which is supposed to help keep your back cool when on a strenuous walk. I’ve never found many cooling systems on backpacks to help me when it comes to sweat, I just sweat very easily. The bottom of the pack has very sturdy rubber/plastic feet that help keep the pack upright and stop it from tipping.
Moving to the top of the bag, the top is the main compartment in duffle bag or doctor bag position, the craftsmanship is evident. First off, the bag opens up so smoothly in an old style doctors bag way. The zipper up here is amazing in its construction and it looks like there is a fair amount of waterproofing as well. The opening mechanism is made of aluminum and powered coated blue and just looks badass. The handle on this portion of the bag is leather trimmed and feels nice and premium.
Once you open the main compartment, you’ll see space for your video, DSLR, or mirrorless camera. The main portion of the bag intended for the camera also has a super nice protective lens pillow that you can set the lens attached to the camera on, a nice touch. There are nice dividers that are rigid yet flexible enough to get around your gear. There is padded space for a few lenses and Tenba included two padded wraps and a padded zippered pouch for any sensitive accessories you might have on you.
Overall, this design is out of this world, just like the Tenba Roadie, the Tenba Cineluxe Backpack 21 is just really well made. Everything from the design to the material choices is made to take care of your gear. The nice thing is, the company knows what it takes to take care of photography and videography gear and that’s why I think they’ve excelled at making such great bags.
I cannot say enough about how much padding and protection there is on this bag. The padding, weatherproofing, and rugged exterior is just one thing. The interior is insanely protective and has some serious padding taking care of those delicate instruments inside. If you utilize the tools provided in this backpack, it is one of the most protective packs you’ll ever get your hands on. I believe serious photo/video users will appreciate the attention to protection Tenba took with the Tenba Cineluxe Backpack 21.
The Tenba Cineluxe Backpack 21 MSRP is $279.95USD. That’s under $300USD for a ton of features specific to the photo/video professional. I think the price is more than fair and you’re getting a huge amount of value here.
This is not a laptop, tablet, or gadgets bag so if you’re seeking something to carry those around, look elsewhere. This bag is specifically for photo/video users who need an amazing bag that will protect their gear and offer them versatility. I can’t say enough good things about Tenba bags. This is the second bag they’ve allowed us to review and I am thoroughly impressed with their continued quality and amazing designs. I highly recommend this bag for photo/video pros who need something for small shoots and perhaps a day trip. Tenba also offers larger versions in the Cineluxe lineup which are great for more gear and bigger jobs. This one is probably best suited for smaller jobs with one camera and a few lenses. I only wish I had enough gear to fill this bag up, bit that will come over time!