The design principles of MrJan Gear Packs

MrJangear started more or less as a challenge. When you complain about products, friends tend to say: if you think you can do better... And as a matter of fact: yes, we think we can do it better.

As gear-freaks, we sat down, wrote down all topics with our collection of photo backpacks, addressed them and came up with our first pack, the Spitsbergen.

And we won. According to our photographing friends, we managed to improve the photo rucksack in such a way that they told us to go on. And so we did.

These ideas reflect the concept how we build all our photo rucksacks: Boris, Bertik and Spitsbergen.


Pockets inside

We don’t like mesh for pockets in a rucksack; it gets ripped, clings to sharp edges and offers the least protection of all fabrics. So we made pockets with a transparent front, coloured coded and in two different sizes. And we made them removable. With the Velcro strips, you can fit them anywhere in your pack. 2 Small and 3 large pockets come standard with the Boris and Bertik but you can add more to your order if you like.


We do not use waterproof zips on purpose. What is the use of it when the seams of your pack are not taped to be fully waterproof? So it is fashion and expensive not function. That's why we use the best zips around: heavy and reliable YKK 10 zips for us with simple and repairable pull-ties.


Internal tension releasing system

We placed four internal tension releasing straps, two on each side. Use the internal straps to reduce the tension on the zips. When your pack is loaded with long and heavy lenses, your gear is pushing outwards – this is when zips are giving in, the weight tries to pull them apart. So reduce the tension with the internal straps.

Hip belt & shoulder straps

First we came up with a removable hip belt because it is comfortable and easy when travelling. But we fount a better solution: a lightweight though very functional belt. No thick padding here that will add up to the size but a very well pre-formed adjustable hip belt. The shoulder straps can be compressed but not stowed away; I never use this feature as I mostly carry the pack on the shoulders.

Bertik on it's frontside: the normal operating position


The Boris IV and Bertik IV backpacks just have two big compartments and a lot of dividers. This is the most versatile setup in our opinion. It fits large lenses and protects them in a simple way. And it leaves you a lot of room for everything else like jackets, food, filters and smaller lenses. Don't forget to have a look at the Lens Pouches which can be the best solution to keep your backpack well organised.


12 dividers in 3 sizes – small red, medium grey and the large one black coloured with wide velcro strips and 10mm High Density foam padding for ultimate flexibility. The inside of the packs are made of the 'loop side' of velcro so you can stick them in any position in the pack. 


The packs