Friday, 28 May 2010

New SwissGear Wired Laptop Backpack for 17-Inch Notebook

I've had the backpack for 2 years now and I'm very happy with it. For 15" laptops, it's perfect. I've even carried 2 laptops in it. But typically, my load consisted of a laptop and text books.

The construction is top notch and after 2 years of daily abuse and heavy loads, there are no signs of wear. My previous backpack came unstiched at the shoulder strap a few months in.

Depending on the load, the bag is pretty comfortable. The shoulder straps are wide and the sternum strap helps keep things in place. The bag also employs something called airflow which basically means there's a gap between the bag and your back. This helps cut down on the infamous sweat stripe you can get with other packs.

The "wired" feature is pretty over rated. It is handy plugging the headphones into the shoulder strap, but since there is no access to the media player, it's a bit of a hassle if you need to adjust the media player for any reason. Also, you have to be aware to take the headphones out of your ears or unplug them from the pack if you move the pack further than your cord can reach. Not a huge issue, but I've forgotten a few times and had the headphones ripped out of my ears a few times. Currently, I'm stashing an external hd in the media pocket.

My 17" HP Pavilion barely fits in the laptop compartment. I can zip up the bag, but it's pretty tight. I haven't taken a seam cutter to the bag yet, as suggested by someone else. I think I can live with it as-is for now.

The built in caribiner and cell pouch are nice touches as well.

Overall, I'm very happy with the bag and don't see my replacing it anytime soon.

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