Crumpler 5 Million Dollar Home 2012

Thursday, May 10, 2012

I have been waiting anxiously to get a Crumpler 5 Million Dollar Home (5MDH) for my DSLR but the Crumpler stores ran out of stock & this means waiting for a couple of weeks to be restocked. When the new batch arrived, I ended up buying the 5 Million Dollar Home 2012 Edition! Ta-daa~

There are a total of 3 colours to choose from & I selected the black/gunmetal version, it being the best looking one compared to the rest. The bag is designed to outlast its lifetime guarantee (as claimed by Crumpler's website), features a super strength water resistant 900D outer with flamed polypropylene webbing & triple strength S-Bend webbing attachment. It also has injection moulded velcro & bonded nylon thread with bar tack stitching on all stress point. Phew~ What a mouthful of technical jargons. My take on this is the bag is built tough to withstand all your outdoor adventures - rain or shine.

Upon grabbing hold of the bag, it felt incredibly light as a feather. In addition, lifting up the bag with the padded carry handle provided the best comfort I have ever experienced before. According to Crumpler, the carry handle is cushioned with neoprene & ergonomically designed to match the natural contours of the hand & fingers. So that explains why the handle feels firm but not rough that it would cut the skin of my palm.

There's a back compartment which is noticeable with its striking red zipper. This compartment is great for keeping your personal belongings close to you ie your phone, wallet or car keys. However, it's pretty tight therefore I wouldn't recommend stuffing in thick wallets or small but bulky items.

Inside the bag where the main compartment is, two padded nylon dividers with fold down flaps can be removed & re-attached; allowing greater flexibility in terms of configuring the space as you like. I'd have to admit that the space ain't that big but Crumpler claims it's sufficient to fit in one main body, 2 small/medium size lenses & an external flash unit.

To better illustrate what this 5MDH is capable of, I have packed in my Nikon D5100 body with 18-55mm & a 350ml stainless steel water bottle as replica of a secondary lens. The empty space on the left side does look pretty tight but I'm pretty sure it can still fit in a 35mm or 50mm prime lens quite snugly. I kinda doubt squeezing in the external flash unit as an extra item is even possible. Anyways, never try never know as I don't have a Speedlite to test & give a better judgement on this.

The front compartment with mesh pockets is very useful to store other camera essentials - extra battery, memory cards, lens cap etc - you name it.

Many existing 5MDH users complained that the velcro fastener produces very loud sounds each time the bag is opened, which can be irritating. The velcro silencer design didn't seem to function well in this case. In this new edition, the velcro silencer design has improved with just a simple flap to cover the velcro fastener in place. Opening & closing the bag with the clasp & compression strap is easy-peasy. If you prefer greater security of your gear, you can always insert the flap back into the small slit hidden behind the velcro fastener.

Lastly, the wide 50mm shoulder strap distributes the weight for the gear quite evenly & provides good balance on the shoulders. This means that petite people like me would not find carrying a camera bag with heavy gear a daunting task anymore. Price retails at RM340 at Crumpler stores in Malaysia & it sure carries a hefty price tag. But which heavily padded bags ain't pricey?

My major complaint for paying such expensive price is the lack of after-sales support in the event issues may arise. Crumpler distributor for Malaysia & Singapore only guarantees a 3-month warranty with full exchange for manufacturing defect. To enjoy the lifetime warranty, product defects exceeding the 3-month period will have to be referred to Crumpler Australia. This means sending your bag to them for QC & verification that it is indeed their manufacturing fault. Can you imagine the cost of delivery to Australia just for Crumpler team to diagnose your defective bag?

I'm generally satisfied with what I've bought. Totally love how the bag has different colour tones to add more excitement & quirk to the design. This 5MDH size is just right for aspiring amateurs like me who's starting out with very few gears, only needing a strong yet lightweight bag for my travel adventures. Really can't wait to take this new baby along with me to Bali in 2 months time! =D

Dimensions: 24.5cm (W) x 22cm (H) x 15.5cm (D)
Volume: 5L
Empty weight: 0.6kg

Info taken from Crumpler Australia