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Daylight Briefcase questions/whining

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    Daylight Briefcase questions/whining

    Hey y’all! I’m new to TB & these forums: I discovered TB while searching for a smaller alternative to my 14L black Timbuk2 Classic Messenger. The DLBC is basically my platonic ideal of a bag: abuse-withstanding construction and fabrics, zippered top, will comfortably hold my laptop​​​​​, not too heavy, professional but attractive. However, I’ve been searching for a black bag, and the Black Ballistic DLBC is in production…and, I hate to say it, a bit drab (though I appreciate the muted logo). This style really seems to benefit from contrasting trim. The Aubergine Ballistic, though, is quite nice-looking and has the benefit of being in stock; I just wonder whether the color is a bit less professional than the black. I’m a lawyer in NYC, but at a nonprofit, so while I need to look like an adult who knows what they’re doing, I’m not held to the rigid business-formal standards that big-firm lawyers are. So that’s the whine. My questions:
    ​​1) Is there any kind of guessable timeline for how long a style will be in production before it ships?
    2) Should I just get the Aubergine? It’ll go, or at least not clash, with most of my clothes. But does it hit the professional mark?

    Thanks to anyone who read this rambly post! I appreciate all advice.

    Welcome to the forums, girlofthehour,

    The Daylight Briefcase is a favorite of mine, and also of one of my fellow moderators, G42. I have way too many of these! This bag is sufficiently popular that I’m willing to bet that the restock times for an in-production DLBC in Black Ballistic is probably pretty fast, if you want to get it instead, but I would send a query to customer support or ask them on web chat, or maybe MikeV will weigh in here if he’s reading the forums.

    However, I would be inclined to order the Aubergine color, which looks very professional, but is not black, and let that stand out for you. (For reference purposes, I grew up in NYC, and one of my close friends from junior high school/high school there, who was a college classmate in the Boston/Cambridge area is a lawyer living in New York in the ABA’s Antitrust division),

    Here’s an early review of the DLBC that I wrote back in 2016
    The new Black (Dark Grid) Halcyon Daylight Briefcase

    Hope this gets the discussion started



      Hi girlofthehour - the DLBC is great! and Welcome to the Forums, we're glad you're here!

      I use mine as a minimal briefcase + laptop as you intend, but it's also a great cross body city bag that's bigger than a Side Kick and with more structure than a Packaging Cube Shoulder Bag. In particular, I sometimes pack it inside a larger bag when on a work trip, so that I can pull it out as a work briefcase during the day and a personal bag when wandering around town on the weekend or at night.

      Agree with moriond - Aubergine is a deep professional looking colour. The Ursa can also be a fine neutral. If they had Steel (as seen in the description photos) or Nebulous (both grey) in production, those are also classic.

      As you probably know, the ballistic gives more structure than halcyon.
      But if you were interested at all in the 400d halcyon used in the exterior of bags, the mill that makes that fabric closed and what's left is quickly running out, so this would probably be the last chance to get one new in halcyon. (The lighter 200d halcyon used as lining in some bags and for many accessories is from a different mill and whilst it has had supply chain disruptions/delays, the mill is still open)

      You can also email the fine folks in TB Customer Service and ask for free swatches of the fabrics/colours you're interested in, to see them in person. They're only a couple inches square and thus not the same as a full bag with the trim, but it definitely helps to get a better idea of colour than a computer screen.

      The bag comes with the Simple Shoulder Strap which is fine for a bag that size. However, if you do want more cushioning because you'll be carrying heavy stuff or whatever, they offer an upgrade to the Absolute Shoulder Strap.
      I prefer the Op/Tech Mini SOS strap (made by the same supplier, which you can get on Amazon) for a bag this small; it's similar to the Absolute, but smaller/thinner and straight, not curved. Like the Absolute, besides being cushy, I like how one side is smooth for easy maneuvering on clothes and the other side has some grip for when you need the bag to stay put.

      The variants 'In Production' for the DLBC were listed in the last week or so, which means that they are definitely being made and generally are within a 3mo or so window of time, but when they are listed doesn't mean that the clock just started ticking, so they could be (and usually are) available earlier. The best thing to do is sign up with your email for the product availability alert for the colour(s) you're interested in. TB also has a reasonable return policy if you want to try out a couple different colours in person... see their FAQ for how to try out a bag and still qualify for a return.
      Just a friendly warning though that seeing them in person & thinking about it too long could lead to acquiring the bag in multiple colours

      Please do let us know if you end up getting one or not - we'd love to hear what you think either way and photos are always appreciated if you get to that point!
      Last edited by G42; 01-07-2023, 11:23 AM. Reason: so many typos
      “Commander, I always used to consider that you had a definite anti-authoritarian streak in you.”
      “It seems that you have managed to retain this even though you are authority.”
      “That’s practically zen.”
      -Terry Pratchett, Feet of Clay


        Thank you for the advice and welcome, moriond and G42! Having polled some friends as well, I’m going to go for the Aubergine, which a friend agreed “straddles professional and personality very well,” and maybe the Packing Cube Shoulder Bag in Black Ballistic as a smaller and less structured alternative to my current bag when I don’t need my laptop with me.

        I emailed customer service about this, but in case anyone here has thoughts: I’d like to get a Cache, if there’s one appropriate for my laptop. I have a 2021 13.6" MacBook Air, dimensions 11.97" x 8.46", 0.44" thick, and it seems like the 13C, which is made for the 14" 2021 MacBook Pro, is the closest option. My main concern is the interior thickness, since MacBook Pros are chonkier than the Airs; I don’t want the machine to rattle around. Anyone out there have the same laptop in a TB Cache?


          I also would recommend using the Op/Tech mini SOS strap with the Daylight Briefcase. There’s a picture that shows it in comparison with the Absolute Strap in my post showing the Op/Tech with the Field Journal Notebook (that was displayed as one of the Daylight Briefcase contents in my early linked review) You can find links for buying this strap from Amazon ( in either black or gray) in the post I’ve given here, along with a few references to alternatives of modifications of the end clips that some users have made to extend use to an even broader range of small accessory bags. You can also buy the Op/Tech strap at any camera store, including places like the B&H photo superstore in NYC near Penn Station.

          I can’t tell you about the cache fits to the 2021 MacBook Air, since my 13” MB Air is a much older model, and I’m now carrying the 2021 14” MacBook Pro, but the cache design makes it unlikely that your laptop will “rattle” in a slightly larger case. There’s foam that runs along the inside edge of the zippers of the cache that keeps the laptop in place, but customer support can tell you more. Before 2018, they used separate horizontal and vertical caches with a top flap, and since I have these for earlier model macs, and can find one that fits my current 2021 14” MacBook Pro, I’m using that instead. In general, between 2015 and 2018, the cache sizes tended to get tighter around the laptops.(We have some users who like to keep a shell around their laptops as well as use the cache).

          If you decide to order a Packing Cube Shoulder Bag, and want to give it slightly more structure, there’s a popular hack to do this: insert a Medium Organizer Pouch or preferably a Medium Double Organizer Pouch in the front diagonal zippered pocket. The front (clear) section of the DOP can be used for items you want to see (here, a pack of travel post cards). The back pouch can be used for items you don’t want/need displayed (passports, travel itineraries, receipts, etc)

          The vertical height of the pouch extends nearly the height of the PCSB, and acts as a stiffener:
          PCSB with Medium Double Organizer Pouch
          Last edited by moriond; 01-09-2023, 03:22 PM.