Synapse 19 (blackhole might be an under statement)
So my Synapse 19 in black with wasabi interior arrived today. Initial impression was "good looking pack but damn that's small" followed by "there is no way this is going to hold anything I need. So I loaded it up with various everyday carry type items: 14" dell laptop and power pack, water bottle (that rarely fits properly in packs), various files, etc. Honestly, the numerous references to the Synapse being a black hole are totally understated.
The pack easily accommodated everything with room to breathe. The main compartment handled the laptop and could still comfortably zip. The water bottle pocket was great and like I said the tall bottle I usually carry bc my kids love it is not always accommodated well by various bags.
I have had a number of bags that spec-wise had the same cubic inch capacity but Tom Bihn really did a nice job laying this out. And the materials really look great. I am a huge fan of contrasting interior colors on packs.
I have been looking for more of a simple, lightweigt pack for running around town with the two munchkins, heading to the beach with them, and something with little or no frame support that can easily be stowed in larger packs for longer vacations. When I travel I usually carry a Mystery Ranch Sweetpea which is phenonminal for hiking and large loads but bc of the size and structure it is a bit much for smaller around town loads.
The straps are nice and the pack carries well. I probably wouldn't want to carry this over vertically climbing terrain with a 30lbs load but as an everyday pack and humping around town with the kids it definitely fits the bill.
My only concern is that aesthetically on me I feel like this looks small. I am 6'1" and about 195lbs. I went back and forth on the Synapse 19 v. 25 with the worry that the capacity for the 25 would be too much (being as there are no compression straps or other way to cinch down the pack). But I think the dimensions on the 25 might be more appropriate for my body size. But I will give it a few days to think it over.
Anyhoo hope to have some pics to follow. Regardless if the size works right, well made, well designed pack that really does layout in a manner to maximize its capacity.