This is a fabulous bag. I use it all the time - as my regular day bag and when traveling. I've been traveling alot since September and was thrilled to get my Synapse! My first impression was that it was small.
I've used this bag daily since early November. It is comfortable and takes whatever I throw at or in it. I love it! The only "problem" I have is when traveling, I've been using it as my personal bag. I use a Tri-Star or Aeronaut in backpack mode for carry on. I've been carrying the Synapse over one shoulder like a messenger bag with one shoulder strap long and the other tucked up/ clipped. It works pretty well but I think a true messenger bag would be more comfortable. It's perfect once I get to my destination.
I've also used it for a couple of day hikes in New Mexico and it was very comfortable. I just pulled out the computer and papers, then put in an extra water bottle.
I've added a picture. I apologize for the quality. I'm not a photographer and this was using my phone! Here's The Synapse at the Volcanoes near Albuquerque, NM. The water bottle is sticking out but the pocket would zip without any difficulty. I just had a drink.
This is basic configuration with additional stuff added or switched around depending on what I was doing.
-macbook pro 13 inch new unibody in waterfield vertical sleevecase
- a few folders with work papers
- a magazine or two
-Canon - flash video cam F100 in semi hard case (ems glasses case)
-Original kindle in standard amazon case in pocket
- 2 smallish guidebooks
- hat, gloves, ultralight rain/wind anorack, occasionally a fleece vest......
- leather dog leash in top of compartment
-small first aid kit
BOTTOM FRONT POCKET
- small hairbrush
- eagle creek quarter packit cube with cables, apple power adapters, monster mini 4 plug power strip......
also the macbook pro power adapter in separate felt bag
- cotton net bag for shopping etc.
RIGHT SIDE POCKET
- 2 pens, 1 telescoping touch stick (dog trainer) in pen slots
- 1or 2 mini size molskine books
- 1 TB clear organizer wallet clipped on to ring
- 1 clicker in bottom of pocket and small amount of treats
LEFT SIDE POCKET
- several packets of lens wipes and handi wipe type things
- noise canceling earbuds in case with a couple of flash cards and adapters thrown in - clipped onto ring
- mifi hotspot with usb cable in small rigid "camera case" clipped onto ring
- kensington iphone extra battery
SMALL SHALLOW FRONT POCKET
- bluetooth ear piece
-general quick grab stuff
WATER BOTTLE POCKET
- sometimes bottle of water
- sometimes wallet
- whatever i needed to stuff in and grab quickly
- change floating around in the bottom - mostly quarters
- snack bars or nuts
This plus whatever extra stuff I need to stuff in and carry. This all feels pretty heavy until it's on my back where it rides comfortably even when hiking. As you can see it's a mix of things for work, travel etc.