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  1. #1
    Registered User
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    Feb 2016
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    Questions/Requests for Synik reviewers

    Thanks to all the Synik reviewers for their thoughtful posts. I have enjoyed reading the approach everyone has taken to reviewing the backpack to assist the rest of us in determining if it would work for us.

    I own a newer S25 and like many Tom Bihn products, it is a fantastic pack with tons of life left in it (probably decades of life given it is a Tom Bihn product). In considering whether the Synik would work better for me (and work so much better as to justify the likely high $200s/low $300s price tag), I have a couple of questions/requests that I would love to hear feedback on from the various reviewers.

    1. What is the relative improvement of the backpack straps? Very few people on the forum had any disparaging comments about the quality and comfort of backpack straps on the S19/S25. That all changed with the Synik. Every reviewer has commented on the improved backpack straps, some stating that the difference is very significant. I understand the straps have improved and I understand the improvement now changes the grading scale, but a quantifiable relative improvement would be helpful. Something like: ďOn a scale of 1-10 the synapse straps are a X and the Synik is an X+Ē.
    2. How much of an improvement is the clamshell opening compared to the opening of the Synapse? Search this forum and many people supported Tom BIHNís decision to not provide a clamshell opening on the Synapse. The decision has obviously been re-considered with the introduction of the Synik. I understand that the clamshell opening makes it easier to access all of the packís contents, but does it make going back to the opening of the Synapse frustrating/miserable? Or with the use of packing cubes is the difference minor?
    3. Are there any cons to a clamshell opening? I am curious as to why Tom Bihn held out for so long?
    4. Could you show a video using the luggage pass through on the Synik, especially with a full (not stuffed, just full) Synik? Many reviewers have said it is tight, so I wanted to get a sense from a video how it is.
    5. Pics or videos showing a person wearing a Synik that is full vs a Synik that has almost no contents in the main area of the bag would be useful.
    6. Please provide us with a sense for how much can fit in the main compartment. For example, 4 t shirts, 2 pairs of pants, one pair of running shoes, etc. I know clothing sizes and packing styles are different, but Iím trying to get an estimate for what it can carry.

    Thanks again for all the reviews. The creativity and approach to each review has been so unique and fun to read.

  2. #2
    Volunteer Moderator aedifica's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Boston; she/her
    14 Post(s)
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    @Holiday, welcome to the Forums and thanks for the questions! I'll keep them in mind when I write my own review.
    I have a bunch of great bags. Favorite color combos include Aubergine/Island, Navy/Solar, Forest/UV, Original Halcyon/Wasabi, Cloud/Viridian... and now also Seapine/UV!

    I've fulfilled my dream of palindromic-colored nested bags! Navy/Ultraviolet Pilot with Aubergine/Island Side Effect inside: blue purple purple blue. Forest/UV A45 with Aubergine/Wasabi Co-Pilot inside: green purple purple green.

  3. #3
    Forum Member imagineez's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2014
    SF Bay Area ; He/Him
    1 Post(s)
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    Questions/Requests for Synik reviewers

    @Holiday, I just submitted my initial review for the Synik 30 and I have pics to address #5.

    Edited to add: I also gave a number rating for the old and new straps.

    Thanks for mentioning what youíre looking for. I will keep this in mind for any updates to my review.

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Last edited by imagineez; 07-29-2019 at 12:45 AM.

  4. #4
    Forum Member Rei's Avatar
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    Nov 2018
    2 Post(s)
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    my 2 cens (about the 2/3)
    I don't have the synik but I do have a clamshell opening travel bag,

    clamshell opening is pretty awesome to organize and access to travel stuff (packing cubes, toiletery pouch etc.) I like my (big) travel bag for that

    but having a clamshell opening on daily basis sounds a little annoying, I don't see myself open entirely my bag in the metro (even though I could obviously just open a little) I will fear I will open too much or that will open itself too much... (once again, the YKK zip will likely hold it just enough I am just paranoid)
    and I do prefer the half-opening way (and o-rings help a lot) especially because I like to use my bags while I move/walk (like a walk in a park or hiking...) it makes me feel more secure

    so it is basically oneself preference, and depends on how you plan to use your bag. for myself I don't need nor want clamshell opening on daily basis, but like it a lot on travel bags.
    just a Bihnion here

  5. #5
    Forum Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    11 Post(s)
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    I briefly tried out a Synik 22, and while I found the clamshell opening to be a great improvement for the less common times when I wanted to get to something in the bottom of the bag more easily, and it would likely be a help if you were packing with both halves open and using the tie downs, it is certainly not a necessity if that is of less importance to a user. Given the robust zippers, I had absolutely no fear of their unzipping more than my intention, so that would not be a deterrent to me.

    As far as the straps go, I never disliked the original straps (they were perfectly good for me). However, the new straps seem to distribute weight more effectively in my experience, since they are thicker and wider, which could increase comfort depending on the weight carried and a person's tolerance. What may seem like an immense improvement for some might be more minor for others - it is very subjective.

    Overall, the increased capacity from 19L in the Synapse to 22L in the Synik, and the other design changes make this a significant contender for best work backpack for me, particularly since I would struggle less to fit a few more items. While I felt apathetic about having a specific laptop compartment, it is not that thick, and I was pleasantly surprised at its utility for easily accessing my iPad and other items when traveling.
    Last edited by NWhikergal; 07-29-2019 at 08:16 AM.
    "Do one thing every day that scares you." - Eleanor Roosevelt
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