Wenger Synergy Backpack, Gray (GA-7305-14F00)
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Swiss Gear Computer Backpack fits most 15"/15.4" widescreens; padded computer pocket;comfort fit back straps; music player pocket; air flow back padding; essentials organizer; headset port; case base stabalizing platform.
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Daily Commuter : Does "Good" as my daily commuter... very tough and well built
Biking Backpack : Does "Just OK"... see short-term and long-term comments
Travel Backpack : I do not recommend... To bulky... just barely fits under seat... if you are above average size it may not work well for you.
After 2 months I still like this backpack... but there a additional comments I'd like to add for Amazon users considering this backpack.
If you find this review helpful... Please click the Helpful button... It lets me know its worth my time writing reviews... I have always found them useful when buying in Amazon... and want to return the kindness to my fellow Amazon users...
Overall... Still Happy with this backpack for my 3 uses... Everyday commuter backpack for work... I bike an hour in the morning and evening for exercise as part of my commute... I travel West-East coast monthly.
- It has both a carrying handle, and a hanging strap... the hanging strap is really useful to hand the back on a hood.
- I like the numerous pockets to keep my things organized when using this backpack as my everyday commuter back
- This backpack does not make as good a "Biking" backpack as it does a Commuter/Travel backpack. I ride in hour long journeys... any longer than that and it gets uncomfortable
- It seems like this backpack does not hold as much as it should... the alignment of the pouches, or padding in the laptop section seem to make it no hold as much. It still holds a lot of stuff... It's just that I cannot over-stuff it like I did my old backpack.
- This backpack needs a break-in period, like a pair of new boots... It felt like a wooden create on my back for the first month. Especially the bottom edge the is very firm to allow it to "stand-up". Additionally, the straps are very firm, and dug into my neck when biking - this is still noticeable on my rides, getting better, but still an issue. I needed a very durable backpack, and this is just part of is needed I guess.
- The main compartment has a separator that serves no useful purpose for any of my needs as a commuter/biker/traveler. In addition it gets in the way of loading/unloading items... I took scissors to it and cut it out it was so annoying.
- Did a couple of coast-to-coast plane trips... This backpack does fit under the seat in front of you... but just barely. If you are a big guy/gal, there may not be much room. Takes up much more space than my older backpack. I dropped a star because of this issue... I do not recommend as a travel backpack.
- This backpack should hold more stuff... It does hold a lot of stuff... but just does not hold as much as I'd expect.
- This backpack extends much farther outward from you back than I'd like... I continually bump into people and walls, etc.
[ 4 Stars --- ORIGINAL INITIAL, SHORT-TERM, REVIEW]
Great Backpack, Well Made; This was my WINNER!, of three Swiss Gear backpacks that I ordered.
First of this is a top quality backpack, and I recommend it to you if its features fulfill your needs.
Second, if you read this post, please click YES to this review being helpful if it was... Please.
My Specific needs: "Commuter, Travel, & Biking Backpack"
I am a "Super Commuter" to the San Francisco Bay area, which means I take a car/bike(11 miles) to the train station, then the train, then bus/bike/walk to the office building. So I'm constantly jumping off of one form of transportation onto another. I need a bag that can keep up with me.
I also fly coast-to-coast about 10 times a year.
I generally carry my laptop, i-pad, phone, charging cords, jacket, change of clothes (when I bike), and numerous small things...
So my backpack needs to meet my needs in both these key areas.
I bike often for work commute and pleasure, so a good biking backpack was a top need too.
The three backpacks I eventually ordered and evaluated in person (keeping one, returning two):
1) Swiss Gear SA9768 Black Laptop Computer Backpack - Fits Most 15 Inch Laptops and Tablets; $45; (RETURNED)
This backpack is well made, good quality, and I could recommend if it meets your specific requirements.
I did not choose this backpack, because it lacked enough pockets to be a good commuter backpack for me.
This is a low cost backpack, than the other two and its material durable and good quality, but I noticed that it was not as thick/durable as the other high priced backpacks.
Another miss, was the lack of a good mini-pocket for my wallet and phone. I pull these out 20 times a day, and a dedicated pocked for these items was essential.
2) Swiss Gear 17 inch Laptop Backpack Waterproof Traveling Bag Outdoor Hiking Backpacks Students School knapsack Rucksack; $80; (RETURNED)
This backpack is well made, excellent quality, and I could recommend if it meets your specific requirements.
This backpack has pockets galore! If you need to be very organized, and places for important documents etc. this is for you.
I did not choose this backpack because it did not have sufficient, zippered pockets (webbed or enclosed) for organization of my little items. There is one little mini-pocket on the upper front, it could hold my wallet, or phone, or badges & key cards (I have 5), but it could not hold all of them.
The lower front mini-pocket is narrow and deep (goes all the way to the bottom), I found it hard to stick my arm all the way down to get items on the bottom.
The organizational pocket was nice except, the zippered pocked was only 50% of the width, and couldn’t hold my checkbook.
No zippered web-pockets were put in any of the 4 main full-size pockets. (my biggest disappointment with this backpack)
Because it has 4 full-size pockets, the MAIN pockets front-to-back size is not as big as I’d like… it is the sacrifice of having so many pockets.
The bottom padding for the laptop is a Velcro attached piece of padding… probably added after people started complaining about lack of padding at the bottom of the pocket. It should be sufficient, but a noticeable retro-fit. (see pic)
The side zipper pockets are more useful of all 3 backpacks I ordered, easy to get items like headphone, chargers, etc. Holds all-size water bottle well.
Laptop pocket is well padded, with waterproof zipper (it’s the only zipper that is made this way)
They designed low-noise zipper pulls for this backpack; this is nice so it does not sound like Christmas every time you shake on the back. (I loved this )
3) Wenger Synergy Backpack, Gray (GA-7305-14F00); $80; (MY WINNER)
This backpack is well made, excellent quality, and I could recommend if it meets your specific requirements.
This back design is over 8+ years old for a reason… people really like it. It has over 900 amazon review!
It meet all my needs that I described above, and I'm very happy with it.
Cable handle looks awesome, but ruins the professional look of the back in my opinion. I wish it had the handle of the back #2 above.
The 2 zippered side pockets are deep with a narrow zipper opening, it awkward to reach items at the bottom. Don’t use for items you need frequent access to.
5, count them 5!, zippered mini-pockets that hold miscellaneous small items. Great for organization of you stuff.
The front lower zippered pocked has a small zipper… BUT the pocked is the full height and width of the front panel… it can hold a lot more items than you think!
Gapping large MAIN pocket! The front-to-back size is large and will hold many things like sneakers. Even though this backpack has 3 full, and one 2/3 size pockets, the main pocket will still hold much stuff when traveling.
When searching for my new backpack I found I needed to really understand my needs in a backpack. The backpack I eventually choose was the one that met my needs for the best price vs quality ratio.
Your needs are unique to you… You will save time in finding the right backpack for you, if you evaluate what features are most important to you first.
This backpack does not stand up to wear and tear. My last backpack was a Lowepro Compudaypack and it lasted 8 years. I migrated to this backpack and 1 year of use, it's falling apart. The bottom waterproof shield is cracking in several locations and falling off. Seams are coming apart. Heck there is a hole in the bag now (See photos). This is with the same daily use as the Lowepro, which lasted 8 YEARS.
So I contacted the manufacturer, and provided everything they asked for. BUT they don't take a PDF of the receipt that was printed from order history. They will only take a JPG of a copy of the original receipt. THIS IS THEIR WAY OUT OF PROVIDING ANY WARRANTY WORK. This manufacturer doesn't need to stand behind their products since they are making their rules too hard to have a replacement. They need to get into the 21st century. Lowepro, Targus, and a host of other manufacturers allow you get repair work done, even if you don't have a receipt! These are companies that stand behind their product, CLEARLY NOT WENGER.
I bought a Everki Titan to replace this bag. I strongly suggest avoiding WENGER / SWISS GEAR backpack as a company that doesn't stand behind their products.
I bought this SwissGear Computer Backpack to use as my daily backpack. It took a lot of investigating and trying to accommodate my needs. I wanted to be able to fit the following:
Work files and brochures
DSLR camera with 2 lenses
I was using the Lowepro Compudaypack for about 8 years and it was perfect... except for one thing. It's no longer made. I wore it out and broke a zipper along with the various scuff marks. So I spent some time finding just the perfect replacement backpack. Well... it doesn't exist.
I ended up finding one that was "close enough" and it has been working well for the past 6 months, except for 3 little items:
I never use the velcro strap for the laptop since it would only help protect the laptop if I dropped the bag upside down. So I just put the laptop in the bag and go. This leaves the hook side of the velcro grabbing the mesh pocket inside. MY SOLUTION was to put a legal size folder inside the compartment so that the hook side can't reach the mesh pocket. It really doesn't need the mesh pocket and would have been better without the mesh.
In the main compartment, there are 2 problems. The first is that the file holder slot always droops down. This needs a velcro strap to keep it up and in place so nothing gets caught on it. I will sew a hook side on the pocket, and attach a velcro strap to the top of the inside of the bag to fix this.
The second problem in this compartment is that the bag always droops if there is not anything inside this compartment. This is because the material isn't thick enough to provide enough support for the weight of the bag. I always leave my bag standing up so that I can easily insert the things I want and go.
My solution for this is a little maker space project. I built a CPVC frame to fit inside the bag and it works wonders!!! It's perfect. it's really easy to make and it took me about 30 minutes, using a hack saw to cut the CPVC to the right lengths. Here is the shopping list:
1x 6' CPVC pipe 1/2" diameter
6x 90 degree elbow connectors (for 1/2" cpvc)
2x Tee connectors (for 1/2" cpvc)
I had to buy a 10' pipe since that was the shortest my local Home Depot carries. The total cost was $6.
Cut 5x cpvc pipe to 10" long.
Cut 2x cpvc pipe to 1" long.
Cut 2x cpvc pipe to 3.75" long.
Assemble as shown in the picture. I did not use any glue.
The end result is that the bag stands up perfectly. If the pipes start to bend, I have plenty left over and can cut a few more lengths and replace them individually. I love this stand for the bag. It also gives me a place to put the velcro strap inside the main compartment. It's a win-win!
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the side to keep the bag completely together.Read more