Review: The King Single - laptop backpack

Roomy, well built, colorful (June 1st, 2006)

MacNN Rating:

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Product Manufacturer: Crumpler Bags

Price: $140.00 US

The Good

  • Well-made backpack. Well thought-out compartments. Removable laptop insert. Two compartments on the front. Warranty.

The Bad

  • This reviewer thinks the Crumpler site is a bit obnoxious. The product names are quite arbitrary.

I always use a computer bag to house my laptop when not in use, to protect it from the perils of everyday life. When I first looked at the Crumpler Bags website, I saw a place to play, not a site that makes it easy to find what you need and buy. Even the model names are strange and let you know that Crumpler is offbeat.

(Editor's Note: Please see the bottom of the Crumpler Winkler Review for more about Crumpler's events and site.)

Design Resulting from Good Fun

The good news is that the spirit of play on the website has resulted in thoughtful details in this fine computer backpack. The design of the King Single speaks of a process where a lot of tinkering was done. As a result, all of the pockets are the right size and in the right location. The King Single is made from water resistant 700D Nylon shell and 420D Ripstop Nylon lining. Zippers have wide tracks and move smoothly, plus the topstitching is neatly done. On the front of the King Single are 2 vertical pockets with diagonal zippers for easy access. Two accessory loops allow you to clip on lightweight items. Inside the King Single are a mesh zippered pocket and 2 Velcro pockets. There is ample room for books, CDs, and even a jacket, in addition to your computer.

A strip of Velcro holds the lightly padded, removable laptop insert on the top and at the bottom. When removed, a flap covers the Velcro to protect the case from scratches. The insert has a useful handle on the back to carry short distances. The Velcro closure on the front flap is huge, so your laptop will not tumble out of this bag! A gusseted pocket offers enough expansion for you to store your power supply. Clever stitching on the front of the pockets creates 2 vertical slots for pens or screwdrivers and 3 credit card sized slots can hold stickies and business cards. The insert easily accommodates the 13" MacBook, 14" iBook, or 15" PowerBook and MacBook Pro computers. The

Padded for Comfort

The King Single's back and shoulder straps are well padded, and it has a carry handle on the back. The padding throughout the backpack protects you and the laptop from bumpy journeys. The padding is bulky, so you will need to adjust the straps in order to get it to sit comfortably. As a short woman, I had to slide the chest strap up, but that strap helps carry heavy packs. Once fastened, the shoulder straps don't feel so bulky and the backpack's slim lines belie exactly how much one can put in this bag. The spine slot design of the external padding prevents the backpack and your laptop from pressing against your spine.

As long as you wear both straps over your shoulders, your back is well protected; in spite of the heavy loads the King Single is capable of holding. Two D-rings on the back straps accommodate more gear or keys. A thin band of reflective fabric is cleverly stitched into each strap to protect you and your precious cargo at night. The King Single backpack should protect you and your computer in style for a long time. To keep your Crumpler bag in good shape, you should brush or wipe dirt off immediately, and dry cleaning is recommended.

Warranty

Zippers, buckles, fabrics and bindings are warranted to be free from defects in materials and workmanship for as long as the original purchaser owns the product. This does not cover fabric abrasion, scratches or fading. The warranty coverage varies in Europe, South Africa, and South America. To find out more about repairs, click on the Fine Print on the Crumpler web page.

While at first glance, this may seem like an expensive bag, the details and excellent design are well worth the years of protection. The bag comes in four color combinations, that are best viewed on the website. My King Single is light blue with a pale blue inside and it is perfect for the college campus. The bag is also designed to rest on its face, so that you never put the side that rests against your clothes down on the ground.

by P.A.M. Borys


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