Format Q

... Journal Entry

What's it got in its waist pack then? Well which one then? Say what? Ah I have three, all the same model but each one of which I keep loaded with different combinations of gear for different purposes at different times. The third one I acquired brand new recently even though they have been out of production for many years.

So we are talking of the Kata Format Q Ergo-Tech Waist Pack which Kata described, in an at times somewhat muddled fashion, in their marketing blurb as follows:


"Format Q Waist Pack Overview:


The Kata Format Q Waist Pack is part of the Kata Ergo-Tech series of bags. It is made to carry a digital camera and MP3 player and PDA and cell phone with accessories. It is made from Elasto-Guard three layer flexible laminate material and uses Flexi-Shield high frequency molded flexible reinforcement that appears in the form of ridges on the exterior. It has internal flat flap pockets and two flexible side zipper pockets that adjust snugly to the body.


The Elasto-Guard waist pack is made to carry a digital camera and personal electronics with accessories. Top zipper access to the main compartment which can be customized using a flexible divider loop, and features: Pockets; Internal flat flap pockets and Two flexible side zipper pockets adjust snugly to the body; Flexi-Shield reinforcement runs along the bottom and front of the pack for additional protection. Carrying options; Waist belt."

I use these as "lens pack" bags as an easy way to carry about spare lenses and a few accessories when needed without impeding my mobility.

Thus when I have my OM-1 II with its usual M.Zuiko 12-100 f4 IS Pro attached when a fuller outfit one of the pre-packed Format Q's goes with me with my 8-25mm f4 Pro and G Vario 100-300mm f4-5.6 II Power OIS zooms plus my 20mm f1.4 Pro prime. Add in a few accessories like a spare battery for the camera, spare memory cards, and lens cleaning bits and there you have it.

In a second pack to support my F80 35mm film SLR with its 50mm f1.4 AF-D attached, I typically carry my 20mm f2.8 AF-D and 85mm f1.8 AF-D again with spare batteries and of course lots of 35mm colour negative film in this case. Sometimes I will swap out the 85mm for my 70-210mm f4-5.6 AF-D if needs must.

Finally, in the third pack to go with my OM-5 with its usual M.Zuiko 14-150mm f4-5.6 II attached may be my G Vario 7-14mm f4 Asph, M.Zuiko's 12mm ED f2 and 75mm f1.8 once again with spare camera batteries, memory cards and so on.

Mind you, one of them might find itself being being emptied out, if I find occasion to take one of my Contax G2 35mm film rangefinder cameras out for the day, and filled with a set of its Zeiss G prime lenses and accessories instead.

So I give you my much loved and highly versatile Kata Format Q Ergo-Tech Waist Packs. Long out of production, if I could find a fourth one in LNIB condition I would seriously consider buying it too.

✧ Jokul Frosti ✧

A space containing the thoughts, experiences, photos and collected curiosities of a walkabout photographer with a snapshot style.