(on its way)
The J Lo of ruck sacks?
There's no such thing as the perfect bag and the more time I spend with my CompuDayPack the more I'm convinced its not even close. It does look nice and offers a fair amount of space but its hard to exploit and badly structured. The reason for the bootilicious subtitle is that this bag definitely has a big backside.
The bag gets its name from the laptop pocket which runs the full height and width immediately behind the wearer. This is fine, though I suppose a padded PSU compartment would be a nerd friendly way to keep the power brick to hand yet stop it gouging the PC without hogging space somewhere else.
The big bum/bomb bay camera area is OK, just a little small, and prone to ejecting its contents when you've packed and leave it unzipped. The dividers here are really handy. Fine for a small SLR and selection of small lenses but creaks when it comes to holding a large body and big lenses. I guess it's more film friendly too as the depth/height seems to assume you'd always separate lenses and body. So OK for my Olympus set up but not a home run for other more bulky and dust sensitive SLRs. For reference while my E-420 can fit in the space of one lens my E-3 can barely fit in the space of two. Standing the lenses vertically makes the most of the space but the default position of the main and sub divider limits you to glass of less than 90mm diameter and 130mm tall. Once packed this makes for a pretty heavy bag and puts that weight as far out behind as possible which would only be a useful counterweight if you were particularly buxom.
The real weakness is the upper back section. It's strongly tapered, which wastes space and forces packing decisions. There are no dividers which means this tall wide space can allow items to clash. There are two zip pockets, with metal slides which can mark kit and the various slim paper and rear wall pockets take a pasting from whatever big stuff is inside.
If the upper back section had provision for dividers in an SLR and tele lens shaped space I think this bag would be about a thousand times nicer. As it is it is a bit of a lump, albeit quite a comfortable one even when loaded to around 10kg.
It would also be rather better to see a simple solution which secures all three major external zips together so that it's not possible for the curious/criminal/loathsome to simply slide one open and eject your toys. The bomb bay is most vulnerable since it opens under its own weight when unzipped.
Maybe next time? As it is the very good price from 7dayshop (around £40) softens the blow and one can't feel too outraged. Just a shame a little more design thought couldn't have been incorporated to refine it into a really good bag.
Vivid Oceans and Secret Seas