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MapGuy
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My Paradigm review

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    My Paradigm review

    Disclaimer: I received this bag from Tom Bihn in exchange for my feedback.

    Anyone who has been around a while has likely heard my occasional whines for a small backpack like the Sprout. The straps on the Sprout were just a little too short, so that the bag would not be wearable if I had a sweater or a coat on. Then I heard the Luminary would be the adult version of this, but for various reasons, the Luminary didn’t really work for me. Plus I just loved the shape and aspect ratio (short with respect to the width) of the Sprout, which the Luminary didn’t have.

    So I am delighted with the Paradigm! I selected the Nightwalk as I was very curious about this color based on pictures I’d seen. Definitely more grey than blue, and very much to my liking.




    Its like a Spout Plus. I love the look of it, I especially like the functionality of it. I think Tom nailed it on this one. This back add on section (the Plus part of the Sprout Plus) is highly functional There are 3 sections like the Luminary, but unlike the Luminary, the water bottle fills the whole space, so you don’t have to move the top layer of stuff to get to it. I tried a variety of water bottles. The largest that could fit comfortably was a cheapo 18 ounce bottle from Ikea. I was also able to use a 16 oz insulated Klean Kanteen, a 12 oz Oxo insulated bottle, a 9 ounce Swell bottle and a 7 ounce Grunwerg DrinkPod. If you want to use something like a 1 quart Nalgene, it fits in the main compartment but is too large of a diameter to fit in the front pocket.
    On either side of the center section, are open pockets along the back and o rings attached to the front. I have my elastic band wallet, a super mini Ghost Whale that holds folded cash, and a Levenger card wallet for note taking on one side. On the other side, I have tissues, a fulFill container (meds, makeup), a mesh super mini with chapstick, toothpicks etc and a Pocket Pouch with loyalty cards. There’s still a little room left for other small items.


    The main compartment can hold either HLT or 2 cubelets side by side. Here’s a picture of my bottom layer: HLT1, matador personal blanket, Stasher pocket containers, one with a snack the other with hand wipes.


    I was able to fit a folded up windbreaker and baseball hat on top of this bottom layer. Or, I can fit in a flat style bento box on top of the HLT. An Obentec Laptop Lunch bento box placed vertically fits very snugly, this is a large box. Most of my other bento boxes are smaller. I could also fit a Ziploc one quart round with room on the side for other items. If you don’t pack the bottom of this bag like I did, you can obviously fit in more and the same lunchbox I packed would be a quite comfortable fit with room left over.. Very large rounded/salad bowl containers would probably not be as suitable or put strain on the zippers.

    I like that the o rings in the main compartment are on the side, around the middle of the bag. This makes it easier to take things out from the tablet compartment without straps getting tangled. The shoulder straps are comfortable, padded but thinner than the Luminary ones. There’s a lot of adjustability on the straps. I am 5’2”/1.57 m and where I have the straps, I'm using about 1/3 of the length. That is to say, this would work for both shorter and taller people. The sternum strap is also adjustable. The bag’s bottom sits right at the curve of the back, so very comfortable.

    Click image for larger version  Name:	IMG_2132.JPG Views:	7 Size:	89.8 KB ID:	335192
    This bag, like the Zeitgeist, is small, and not suitable for folks who need to carry a lot of gear or laptops. It’s a good out for the day bag. Aesthetically and functionally, this is exactly what I was looking for.
    sturbridge
    Forum Member
    Last edited by sturbridge; 08-17-2021, 12:59 PM.
    Getting to the point with too many bags to list them all. Current daily carry is a PickUp Truck and Everyday Cubelet. Love all my shop bags, ghost whales, cubelets. Hoping to travel again soon to use my A30 and co-pilot.

    #2
    Thank for the review. Do you have any photos of the inside of the bag?

    Comment


      #3
      The 3rd picture shows inside the main compartment. Is there something specific you'd like to see? I can do another picture.
      Getting to the point with too many bags to list them all. Current daily carry is a PickUp Truck and Everyday Cubelet. Love all my shop bags, ghost whales, cubelets. Hoping to travel again soon to use my A30 and co-pilot.

      Comment


        #4
        Originally posted by sturbridge View Post
        The 3rd picture shows inside the main compartment. Is there something specific you'd like to see? I can do another picture.
        Some of your photos seem to be missing, please try attaching again.
        I like all the blues and greys...and all the happy citrus colours too! My search unicorn is the Sapphire Dyneema original Small Shop Bag...

        Comment


          #5
          ok adding the pictures that were initially in first post: this is the front view- NIGHTWALK!!!

          Click image for larger version

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          Getting to the point with too many bags to list them all. Current daily carry is a PickUp Truck and Everyday Cubelet. Love all my shop bags, ghost whales, cubelets. Hoping to travel again soon to use my A30 and co-pilot.

          Comment


            #6
            This is the contents of the front pocket laid out: Click image for larger version

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            Getting to the point with too many bags to list them all. Current daily carry is a PickUp Truck and Everyday Cubelet. Love all my shop bags, ghost whales, cubelets. Hoping to travel again soon to use my A30 and co-pilot.

            Comment


              #7
              This is an inside shot of the main compartment, showing that I put a first layer of items in, and how much room is left for other stuff:

              Click image for larger version

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              Getting to the point with too many bags to list them all. Current daily carry is a PickUp Truck and Everyday Cubelet. Love all my shop bags, ghost whales, cubelets. Hoping to travel again soon to use my A30 and co-pilot.

              Comment


                #8
                Would you say that the new Contour shoulder straps are similar to the older style Bound shoulder straps? I'm very interested in the Paradigm but I'm totally spoilt by the Edgeless shoulder straps.

                Thanks for the review 😀
                Night Walk/Northwest Sky Paradigm, Navy/Cloud Road Buddy, Navy Mini Yeoman, everything Acuity

                Comment


                  #9
                  I can't answer that, as I don't own any other Tom Bihn backpacks. I had a Luminary at one point, and those straps were definitely cushier than these are. But these are really small bags so unless you carry a brick or two in there, these straps are padded enough for normal use in my opinion.
                  Getting to the point with too many bags to list them all. Current daily carry is a PickUp Truck and Everyday Cubelet. Love all my shop bags, ghost whales, cubelets. Hoping to travel again soon to use my A30 and co-pilot.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Very informative, thanks! Thanks especially for the list of water bottles you tried. I can’t wait to see how well my collection fits in.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Originally posted by latchford View Post
                      Would you say that the new Contour shoulder straps are similar to the older style Bound shoulder straps? I'm very interested in the Paradigm but I'm totally spoilt by the Edgeless shoulder straps.

                      Thanks for the review 😀
                      Hiya
                      latchford
                      Forum Member
                      latchford - I provided a point of view over on the other thread - cross posting here for other folks

                      https://forums.tombihn.com/forum/tom...278#post335278
                      I like all the blues and greys...and all the happy citrus colours too! My search unicorn is the Sapphire Dyneema original Small Shop Bag...

                      Comment


                        #12
                        As someone who still clings to my Sprout because nothing else including the Luminary has worked out, this is really helpful! I am hopeful this might finally be the small backpack I am looking for, just have to decide which color to pre-order.
                        Rambling On. . . . .

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Originally posted by Meglet View Post
                          As someone who still clings to my Sprout because nothing else including the Luminary has worked out, this is really helpful! I am hopeful this might finally be the small backpack I am looking for, just have to decide which color to pre-order.
                          One of the features that I liked in the Sprout — particularly in the redesigned Sprout, which is not the version that you have — are the pockets at the top of the bag (either at the top on the outside or at the front side inside towards the top of the bag.).

                          The inside of the main compartment of both the Paradigm and the Zeitgeist are designed similar to the Paragon in having a padded sleeve against the back wall, with no o-rings or way of suspending items above that pocket opening to make more use of the vertical space on that side.

                          The redesigned Sprout was intended to better accommodate U.S. letter size paper.so it is taller and wider than the original Sprout, and the pockets at the top of the bag and inside are larger. Both the Paradigm and the Zeitgeist are slimmer profiles than the Sprout.

                          If you are carrying US letter size paper inside the main compartment, the Zeitgeist (the one that looks more like the Paragon or mini Daylight Backpack in shape) is the better choice for this purpose, because the Paradigm tapers a bit more in its width near the top. In neither of the two new bags can you use that back pocket for US letter paper or even the slightly narrower A4 size, because the top opening is too narrow for this purpose — you’d have to carry the paper in the main compartment. I can squeeze a soft A4 Rhodia notebook into the Paradigm main compartment, but the top corners are pinched.

                          The front zippered pocket of the Paradigm allows you to carry larger (and specifically taller) water bottles than you could manage in the redesigned Sprout, where these had to go into the side pockets on the inside of the bag. I can manage a 16 oz (0.48 liter) Zojurushi thermos in the central compartment of that front pocket (@sturbridge’s Sprout Plus).

                          i like the comfort of the new straps, but the webbing straps on the Sprout were never uncomfortable for me — in the same way that the Daylight Backpack design always proved more comfortable than I expected from the description.

                          HTH

                          moriond

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