Photo by Lola Akinmade

Judging by just its looks, this sleek hard-shelled Fort Knox-secure black box that arrived on my doorstep was a classic beauty.

Slappa produces a line of hard bodied CD, DVD, laptop cases, backpacks, and similar containers designed to protect your gear. Its new Photo Locker is a hard body photo case geared towards traveling photographers. It’s made from a xEVA fire retardant, waterproof shell and an in-built HoneyComb frame for support.

The locker has two key sections (in addition to a couple inner pockets). Its main section comes with 13 Velcro lined removable/re attached walls which you can use to divide up the box and reconfigure its layout for various equipment. The second section contains a large pocket for computer cables and such as well as enough space to fit your laptop.

Here are more specs on the Photo Locker from Slappa:

  • Molded Duro-Shock xEVA HardBody shell, resists impact, water and fire bursts
  • Super-cush inner body cradle for additional protection
  • 13 Super-cush inner, movable dividers
  • Independant laptop sleeve (made from 1680D Ballistix nylone), your choice of 15.4″ or 17″
  • PRO-Grade Shoulder strap with mirror plated alloy clips
My experience

After taking a couple beauty shots of the case, I loaded it with at least 4 different lenses, my external flash unit, an extra Nikon camera body with an already attached lens, and some other gear, and was left a little embarrassed personally.

The photo locker swallowed up all my equipment within its cushy interior, leaving a ton of extra space for more stuff. It could easily fit 2-3 pro-level camera bodies, at least 1-2 long range telephoto lenses more.

Its two separate sections allow you to keep your laptop, peripheral devices, cords, cables, and other potential camera or lenses scratching culprits away from your photography gear.

In terms of being a mobile office, the Photo Locker can also hold laptops up to 17 inches wide, 4-5 external hard drives, and everything else – gadgetwise – you need.

The box felt pretty lightweight for its size so I was quite surprised to find out on its specifications sheet that it actually weighs 18 lbs empty; a major plus for Slappa.

My only issue

Before my recent trip to Sicily, I’d seriously considered carrying the Photo Locker on board as hand luggage because that’s ultimately what most photographers prefer to do since many airlines are notorious for breaking guitars and other valuable equipment.

Although carry-on luggage dimensions vary among certain airlines, the standard dimensions are 22” (w) X 14” (h) x 9” (d) for a total of 45’’ all around.

The Photo Locker’s outer dimensions are 23.62″(w) x 14.96″(h) x 13″(d) which means it just narrowly misses the carry-on requirements by a few inches depth-wise.

While many airlines would turn the other way, you may want to check what your particular airline’s requirements are.

Even if you do have to check in your Photo Locker, rest assured, your gear would be safe from damage. The box is well padded with enough internal cushioning and its exterior shock-absorbent hard body shell will certainly hold up against any disgruntled baggage-handling.

Price: $149.99 | Buy from SLAPPA’s website