If you use lighting gear on the go, chances are you need a bag for your light stands and other equipment. Sure, tossing the light stands in the trunk of your car will do the job, but the stands are likely to bang against each other and the things in the trunk. So, having a bag can help protect your lighting equipment and stay organized.
Karamy, a newly emerged manufacturer of lighting gear, makes a range of light stands and studio lighting bags. They have different sizes and slightly vary in features. Here, we review the Karamy KSB-KB105, the largest lighting kit bag currently offered by the company.
The Karamy KSB-KB105 light stand bag is 39.3 in (1.05 m) long. It weighs 3.9 lbs (1.76 kg), which is not a lot at all for a bag of this size. It has a very generous amount of padding, about 1/4 inch (7 mm) or so, in the side walls and the bottom. The top is a bit thinner (probably because it needs to bend to open).
There are two straps with snap buckles, which help prevent the content of the bag from moving inside it. These straps are especially useful when you don't have the bag fully loaded.
Besides the bag handles, the Karamy KSB-KB105 also features a shoulder strap, the length of which can be adjusted depending on your height and the load of the bag.
For an extra storage space, the Karamy KSB-KB105 lighting kit bag has an fairly large external compartment. We found it to be very useful for storing cables and smaller items.
The removable divider wall with three smaller detachable dividers help you organize your gear in the bag and protect the different items from damaging each other. We liked the added flexibility of configuring the bag, but we found that the smaller dividers don't stick too well to the wall. The velcro hooks seem to be fine, but the divider wall does not seem to provide enough loops to hook on. Also, we thought it would be good if the main divider wall could stick to the bottom of the bag, which would limit the movement of the photo equipment as you pack it. To be fair, the dividers are perfectly usable, but we wish Karamy can make some improvements in the future.
The Karamy KSB-KB105 lighting kit bag can fit quite a bit of equipment. If you use studio strobes, you can fit 2- or even 3-light setup in the bag. The left image below shows an example of how you can pack your lighting gear, which, in this case, is 2 monolights, 1 snoot, 1 speedring, 1 umbrella, 1 softbox, 2 light stands, 1 tripod, and some cables. The right photo below illustrates a speedlight type of a load: 4 speedlights, 3 Rogue XL Pro reflectors, RoundFlash collapsible beauty dish, 2 light stands, and a tripod.
The Karamy KSB-KB105 light stand bag also features four small legs, as you can see in the photo below. We are not sure if they are really needed or do much. If the bottom of the bag needs protection to reduce the wearing off, it would be better to add another layer of material there. In any case, the legs don't really bother us, but this might be something the Karamy folks should consider revisiting.
Overall, we were pleased with the Karamy KSB-KB105 lighting kit bag. We used it on several location photoshoots, and the bag served its purpose of storing, organizing, and protecting the photo equipment on the move. We felt the padding was sufficient, there was plenty of the room in the bag, and the dividers were useful in a number of instances. We can recommend this bag to anyone who's looking for a solution to carry a small studio setup or even just some light stands. The Karamy bags are very reasonably priced. You can check the current prices by using the links below.
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