Originally named after a bird that carries its precious cargo through the skies, it was, perhaps, only a matter of time before Peli released its Air range.
Designed specifically to provide safe but practical storage on planes, the latest model is the smallest and lightest case in the family.
Weighing in at just 5.24lbs the Peli Air 1507 is targeted at the 21st century videographer who works with gear that is compact and portable.
With vital dimensions of 17”x14”x9” it’s small enough to fit on a plane’s cabin storage – avoiding the risk of your expensive equipment spinning endlessly around a carousel in Timbuctu while you wait for it in Tripoli.
The company behind the product proudly describe it as ‘the lightest premium protector case on the planet’. Big statement, but Peli have backed themselves, by offering their infamous lifetime guarantee.
They say the 1507 is crushproof, waterproof and dustproof, having passed impact, drop, submersion and high and low temperature tests, so it should safely cushion gear in even the most rugged of environments.
Apart from compactness, the big selling point of the new iteration is its weight – it’s 40% lighter than previous versions.
The saving has been made through a new HPX2 polymer formula - I’ve no idea either, but it sounds impressive – which enables the walls of the case to be thinner but just as strong as in prior models.
The structure of the case has also been redesigned with the handles and solid double-throw latches hollowed out in honeycomb design to create a sturdy exo-skeleton that saves on weight but manages to maintain the case’s integrity.
As with other Peli cases the interior can be divided in a plethora of different configurations and in different ways.
The TrekPak system (shown in the images) is neat and incredibly user friendly. The case comes with a special cutter for slicing the plastic-strengthened dividers to the specific lengths required.
Clips join the dividers to the side of the case to lock them safely in place. If you upgrade a camera or need to swap elements of the kit around for different jobs, simply pull on the small red ties attached to top of the clips to unlock them and reposition or replace the dividers accordingly.
It really is a very neat system and I was surprised at how much equipment I was able to get in it. I managed to fit four lenses, a DSLR camera and a Mavic Pro drone - complete with three batteries, controller and charger – with space to spare to potentially squeeze in an action cam.
The case can be set up in alternative ways, either with pick and pluck foam - manually customisable cubed foam - or with padded dividers – featuring a felt exterior and highly visible yellow interior, to make it easier to identify equipment.
Another option is to leave it empty (no foam) – for example, if you want the case to act as a protective shell for a drone, already cushioned by a bespoke protective rucksack.
It can also be bought in four different colour options - grey, black, yellow and orange, for those who care (not me – black every time, thanks).
Other features worth a mention, but nothing more, is the business card holder next to the foldable handle and the two padlockable hasps to provide extra security.
The Peli O-Ring offers a waterproof seal and the case also floats, so your gear is safe should it fall over the side while being chased by Indians going down the Amazon.
You do pay a princely sum for all this security with the 1507, complete with Trekpak dividers, currently retailing at a punchy £396 on the PeliShop website.
With so much competition for a videographer’s hard earned pennies (cameras, lenses, tripods, sliders, drones, radio mics – the list goes on), spending £400 on a case may be some way down the priority list.
On the flipside, however, if you’re going to spend thousands of pounds on kit, £400 to protect it is arguably a drop in the ocean and a wise investment - as Peli would say, what price for peace of mind?
Overall, it may be lighter than its early models, but the 1507 lives up to the standards that Peli have set over the years –it’s built like a tank and while it is a big statement it’s probably fair to say that this is the ‘lightest premium protector case on the planet’.