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Kalahari Mata Mata K-11 Canvas Bag mini review


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I've been looking for a smaller bag for my Fuji setup. I was looking for a Domke (either F6 or F3) as I prefer canvas bags.

During my search I came across Kalahari camera bags. Kalahari appear to be a German company, and make a range of camera bags in leather and canvas. 

There were two that I was interested in which were the Mata Mata K-11 and Mata Mata K-12. There are some Youtube clips showing the K-12 and I could see that it was quite big and spacious. However, I really struggled to pick up any information about the K-11.

I usually err on the side of getting bags that are too big and I end up overloaded with equipment - but this time I forced myself to stay small and decided that the K-12 would be too big, so I decided to take a chance and buy the K-11. I bought it for £49.18 (random price I know) from Amazon here in the UK - they are in stock in the UK and are available next day.

The bag comes with a padded insert, which I am not using because it reduces the available size by a few mm in each direction and I wanted to have as much space as I could - the insert has a twin zipped lid and is quite nice - but too bulky for my purposes. The insert did have a padded base in it, which I removed and put into the interior of the bag. The interior of the main bag is lined - which isn't always the case with cheaper canvas bags. Also there is a strip of velcro running all the way round at the top - this is what I have used to attach the supplied dividers to.
26935751232_8e8f6f7be0_c.jpgKalahari Mata Mata K-11 by Andy McDonald, on Flickr

As well as the main compartment, there is a zipped pocket in the top flap (like the Domke F1x and F2).
26755992380_c4b0775e36_c.jpgKalahari Mata Mata K-11 by Andy McDonald, on Flickr
I've managed to put a filter wallet with 7 or 8 Cokin P sized filters plus adapters and holder, a cable release and a hotshoe spirit level in there. I am not sure that I will stick with this as it makes the flap quite rigid.

There are two expanding pockets at the front, these aren't huge but I managed to get a small flashgun in one (I will be able to fit spare batteries for it there too I think, plus a TTL cable I think) plus a spare battery and SD card in the other (which still had a lot of space).
27029870725_05ba3e7885_c.jpgKalahari Mata Mata K-11 by Andy McDonald, on Flickr

There are also expanding pockets at each end of the bag, these are larger and would easily hold a lens.
26424318984_9d12e51f7b_c.jpgKalahari Mata Mata K-11 by Andy McDonald, on Flickr

This shows a Nikon 50/1.8E with the end pocket.
26424298804_95290238b9_c.jpgKalahari Mata Mata K-11 by Andy McDonald, on Flickr

The bag comes with a wide shoulder strap, which has a removable non slip pad. It also has a small hand strap which you can remove and a waist belt (with a buckle).
26756002410_ce513c3b35_c.jpgKalahari Mata Mata K-11 by Andy McDonald, on Flickr

The bag is deceptively spacious. This is what I have managed to fit into mine:
26426504453_08f2306188_c.jpgKalahari Mata Mata K-11 by Andy McDonald, on Flickr
Fuji X-E2 with Cosina 24/2.8 mounted to Zhongyi Lens Turbo II adapter, Nikon 75-150/3.5E, Nikon 200/4AI, Vivitar 19/3.8AIs, Nikon 50/1.8E, Fuji Ef-20 flash. Plus cleaning kit, spare SD card, spare battery, Cokin P sized filters, cable release, hotshoe spirit level and Focus F1 strap (with Arca Swiss clamp).

This is the bag with everything in it:
26961543831_8e8b4a93c7_c.jpgKalahari Mata Mata K-11 by Andy McDonald, on Flickr

I tried the bag today and it was pretty comfortable and I'm happy with how much kit I can fit into it.

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Thanks Andy. This is a nice and well written and documented review which other members looking for a medium-small bag may find useful. Thank you for sharing your experience and opinion.

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Thanks for taking the time to reply Marco.

I learn a lot from this (and some other) forum so I'm always keen to try to contribute something back.

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