Cheaper Audio Gear Organizing Cases

Anytime you slap the words Audio, Video, or Photo on a product the rule of thumb is to mark it up about 500%. This applies even to small pouches and travel cases, but for people on the move, it's a necessary evil. I've found my own ways of staying organized with all the bits and pieces in my rolling bags, by using transparent tackle boxes made by a company called Plano. I wrote an article about this back in May found here:

The clear tackle boxes from Plano have taken my beatings and it's a solid product. Small items are separated and the transparency helps me find things quickly. A quick dry erase marker on the inside helps me determine used or unused CF cards and batteries.

Now looking to break all of my Audio gear into a seperate case, I find myself turning back to Plano. I have a number of shotgun microphones, lav microphones, Zoom H4n, Zoom H1's, shock mounts, clips, and cables. Putting all the audio gear together and laying them out for easy access will help me stay organized instead of throwing things in a bag. A trip to the local Walmart revealed a number of plastic hard cases with handles for Guns, complete with break away foam lining. Some single layer cases start at just around $9 dollars.


Of the ones on display, my favorite one is a 4 gun case designed with 2 stages of foam and extra deep. Plenty of space to store all of my different microphones and audio recorders with room to spare, while the handle makes for easy transporting. The break away foam will help to protect, keep items from shifting, and provide a clear view of what needs to go back in the case.


There's a number of different foam lined hard cases in the gun section and even more that can be found online. From plastic to aluminum, deep and shallow. Great for protecting a variety of small video, audio, and photo gear. The only suggestion I have is you stray away from the Logo branded cases like 'Glok' or 'Smith & Wesson' in case you plan on jumping on a plane, and if someone asks you what's in the case, you should probably say 'Microphone' and not 'Shotgun'.

Aluminum Foam Lined Gun Case

12 thoughts on “Cheaper Audio Gear Organizing Cases

  1. I got mine in Canada at "Wholesale Sports." They're tough, obviously not Pelicans, though. I've had both the cheap pistol cases (pictured in your post's second image) and nice pelicans direct mounted on a motorcycle in remote areas. The cheap ones work!

    (they're my pictures from an old trip-site

  2. Thanks for the tip on the PLANO cases! Hit Wal-mart this morning and they were unloading a truckload! Bought one for my audio gear and going back later to get one for some portable hard drives. The foam alone will cost you more than $10 in most places - thanks for the great find, Emm!

  3. Jesse

    Yeah, It will probably be a bit more. But would be nice to buy a waterproof sporting case and put the breakaway foam in it. Sort of a DIY pelican.

    I know fabric stores carry foam but not sure if they would have the breakaway type?

  4. Emm

    Post author

    @Jesse - The foam is part of those gun cases. If you want to buy it separately that can be expensive too.

  5. Adam

    I've been using an aluminum tool case for a number of years now to hold my strobes and big lenses. I got it at the hardware store for $20. It is lined with foam and keeps things secure and protected. I found it a Lowes by their drills but I can't find it online. It's about 18x12x5 and it looks similar to this:

    Replace the word Tool with Photo and costs a fortune.

  6. Emm

    Post author

    They are definitely not built like a Pelican for waterproofing. These cases should work fine to keep out light dust, sand, and light drizzle, but i'm not planning on going on any adventures anytime soon.

  7. Neil

    Would these cases work for lenses too? How "weather proof" are they?

    Certainly a cheaper alternative to Pelican cases.

  8. Sean W

    I have been using those exact plastic Pistol cases for about 10 years now and find myself getting more for everything I have, keeping the gear separate and safe. They work great!
    I have gotten a few double-takes from people as I walk into a church to "shoot" wedding tho 🙂

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