Click for Coverage
Due to the EU’s Global Data Protection Regulation, our website is currently unavailable to visitors from most European countries. We apologize for this inconvenience and encourage you to visit for the latest on new cars, car reviews and news, concept cars and auto show coverage, awards and much more.MOTORTREND.COM
  • JP Magazine
  • Dirt Sports + Off-Road
  • 4-Wheel & Off-Road
  • Four Wheeler

Mountainsmith Parallax Camera Backpack - Sleek, Reliable & Convenient

Posted in Product Reviews on March 1, 2010
Share this
Photographers: Courtesy of Mountainsmith

Imagine this: You've parked your rig on the crest of a gorgeous panoramic view (think the 13,000-foot-high Black Bear Pass in Colorado). You step out to admire "Mother Nature's fresco" when you say to yourself, "Man, I wish I had brought a decent camera to capture this moment."

Well, now you can bring that expensive Nikon or Canon into the field, thanks to the Mountainsmith Parallax — a sleek backpack that serves not only as a reliable rucksack during rugged off-road journeys but also as a convenient camera bag and padded laptop carrier.

But check out the pros and cons below to judge for yourself.

Mountainsmith Parallax
Size: 18x13x12 in
Weight: 5 lbs 6.1 oz
Materials: ReDura 100-percent recycled-plastic fabric with 840d nylon Ballistic reinforcements
Retail Price: $189

Padded Sleeve
We usually leave the high-end electronic toys at home, but it's good to know we have the option of bringing a laptop (with a maximum 17-inch screen) and having it safely secured for transport.

Personalized Compartments
With back-panel access, the padded fleece-lined interior can be adjusted with Velcro dividers to separate your clothes, gear, and camera. Plus, there's a plethora of pouches, pockets, and panels — inside and out — to hold small tools, accessories, and water bottles.

Purposeful Design
The Parallax's innovative engineering includes:
• Removable storm cover to keep the whole backpack dry
• Removable belt pouch that can hold a multitool, small flashlight, or batteries, etc.
• Rapid-access tripod mount

Precise Comfort
The ergonomic design — contoured shoulder straps, rubber molded handles, etc. — aims for maximum comfort. Chiropractor visits, be gone.

Plane Props
Though heavy, it's small enough to be a carry-on, per Federal Aviation Administration regulations, for plane trips.

Planet Friendly
We're not tree-huggers, but we do want to keep Mother Nature happy — we are all outdoor enthusiasts, after all. So, our favorite feature is the Parallax's ReDura fabric, which is made from 100-percent recycled polyethylene-terephthalate plastic. One Parallax knapsack is made from one-and-a-half-dozen 16-ounce bottles.

Portly Pack
Unfortunately, the Parallax is a chunky 5 pounds — negligible when it's tied down to your rig, but highly noticeable when it's strapped to your back.

Price Tag
The Parallax's weight isn't the only thing with some heft; its cost is substantial. But you're definitely getting what you pay for: top quality. Shop online to find some decent deals.

Verdict: A
Functional, durable, and versatile — the Parallax mixes the best elements of an adventure backpack, a camera bag, and a laptop carrier. Minor complaints aside, this recycled-plastic backpack stands out as a winner for 'wheelers, photographers, and Earth.


Golden, CO 80401

Connect With Us

Newsletter Sign Up

Subscribe to the Magazine

Browse Articles By Vehicle

See Results