Billingham 72 vs. 4 Other Billingham Bags:
Today, I’m going to talk a bit more about the new Billingham 72 camera bag. For those interested, I wrote a long review earlier, and it can be found here. Anyway, a reader wanted to know how the new Billingham 72 compares to the M Combination, and the Hadley Small. I was actually going to write up a comparison between the 72, Stowaway Compact, and Stowaway Pola but I figured I might as well just put it all together, and compare all five bags at once.
Before I get started, I just want all of you to know that this comparison is in no way a review, so if you’re looking for more information about any of these bags, I did review every single one of them, and you can find them on this page. Also, I’m going to use mostly pics to compare these bags as I think this is the best way to get a feel of them. Ok, let’s start. First up, I’m going to show you a few photos of the 72 compared to the M Combination, and Hadley Small.
↑ Billingham M Combination vs. Hadley Small vs. 72.
↑ Here’s a top view of all three.
↑ Here’s now they would look like inside. They do not have all their included padding in this photo. Cameras setups are (from left to right): Fuji X Series with XF 23mm f2, Leica M3 with 50mm Summicron, and Leica M6 TTL Millennium with 50mm Summicron.
Let’s talk about the Billingham M Combination first. It’s actually my most used bag when I’m carrying a small mirrorless or rangefinder kit. I absolutely love it for several reasons. In addition to the excellent quality (which is basically a trait of all Billingham bags), the M Combo is light, and easy to carry around all day whether it is packed full or carrying the basics. It has a hard bottom (of course, there is thick padding to cover the hard bottom), so it can protect my gear from some pretty hard impacts. I’ve actually dropped this bag by accident with a bunch of Leica M gear in it on a hard granite floor. It landed on it’s bottom but my gear was completely unharmed. I also really like the fact that it holds its shape better than the Hadley Small, which makes it easier to retrieve gear from it while walking.
Speaking of the Billingham Hadley Small, it actually carries the most out of these three. I’ve had 5 lenses, one M body, charger, extra batteries, a bunch of memory cards, and an iPad Pro 9.7 in this bag. The Hadley Small does not have a tablet sleeve but I slip my iPad in between the removable insert and the back of the bag. It fits perfectly. You would think that with the ability to fit so much gear, it would feel the biggest out of the three but the funny thing is, the Hadley Small actually feels more compact than the M Combo. It’s probably because of its messenger styled design; it does hug the body a bit better than the M Combo. I also like that there are two separate pockets as oppose to just one big pocket on the M Combo. Let’s talk about the two Stowaway bags now.
↑ The Billingham Stowaway Compact vs. Stowaway Pola vs. 72.
↑ Here’s a top view of all three bags.
↑ Here are the insides of each bag. The Billingham 72 does not have its included divider in this photo. Cameras in these bags (from left to right) are: Fuji X Series camera with XF 23mm f2, Leica M6 with 50mm Summicron, and Leica M3 with 50mm Summicron.
So, the Stowaway bags are probably the most similar to the Billingham 72, at least in terms of what they can carry. The Billingham Stowaway Compact is obviously the smallest of the three. As you can see in the photos, it does fit my Leica M3 with a 50mm Summicron attached. This is really for the bare essentials if you’re talking about carrying only camera gear.
As you can see in the photos, the Billingham Stowaway Pola actually has some decent room. It’s carrying a Fuji X Series camera with XF 23mm f2 in the last photo above but you have enough room to put the camera in it with the bottom plate actually on the bottom of the bag.
Out of these three, I actually prefer the Billingham 72 for carrying a one camera and one lens system. It has a lot more padding for one. The zippered openings on both Stowaway bags actually make it more difficult to retrieve and put back gear versus the flap on the 72 as well. This is especially so with the Stowaway Compact given its the smallest one. If you’re carrying other things though besides camera gear, the Stowaway bags might fit your needs better. They might be better for you if you’re carrying a small camera, and a bunch of non-photographic related things.
So, I hope this little comparison helps any of you who are considering these bags. They are all nice, so you really can’t go wrong. Again, if you want more info, check out my reviews on each of these bags. You can always ask me a question below, and I will try my best to answer it :).
Thanks for taking the time to read my comparison! If you’re considering purchasing one of these bags, and my comparison helped, please help support this site by purchasing from any of the links in this review. It will not cost you anything extra. Thank you for your support!
The 72 can be found on Billingham’s site. It is currently only available in the UK until December 31st 2017.