Osprey Pixel Port
Consider the Osprey Pixel Port the Peter Dinklage of packs – smart, compact, and versatile. The urban bag's 14-liter capacity is the ideal amount of space for most casual around-the-city adventures and its slim profile made it simple to wear whether we were gripping the handlebars of a Cannondale or a café cruiser. Yet the bag's slightness doesn’t detract from its design. Its medium-size main compartment is separated by a padded sleeve: One side is fleece-lined and sized to fit laptops as large as 15-inches; the other is for general storage and includes two pen sleeves, a key clip, and five smaller pockets. A top flap runs the full-length of the pack and contains a zippered pocket for your sunglasses and phone. And since the flap cinches down with a couple of clips, it can haul a spare rain jacket or yoga mat. Smart. Even smarter: Flip the full-length flap over to reveal a tablet pocket with a clear, touch-sensitive window. That window not only provides protection from mild precipitation and dirt, but also lets you complete tap-and-swipe gestures without having to remove the tablet – handy for those moments when you're sitting on a bus or subway with your bag on your lap, or any time you're just too lazy to unpack it. [$120; ospreypacks.com]
Days used: 60
Conditions encountered: Everything from snow to rain to sunny and 75 degrees.
Activities engaged in: Standard city commuting by foot, subway, bike, and motorcycle. Proved comfortable during all.
Nitpick: The main compartment is a bit snug.