Skooba Satchel 2.0 review

by Reads (9,975)

by Sarah Meyer

At the beginning of August, RoadWired announced it was changing its name to Skooba Design.  Along with this announcement, the "new" Skooba Design announced a line of all new products. The Skooba Satchel 2.0 is a messenger-style bag that Skooba Design claims, "is like no other laptop bag you’ve ever seen."  We’ll see if that holds true.

 
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The Skooba Satchel 2.0 Specifications

  • Dimensions: 16.75"L x 12"H x 6"D
  • Weight: 44 oz.
  • Ballistic Nylon exterior with neoprene trim stripe
  • Patented Air Square protection system for laptop
  • Metal, no-twist shoulder strap fasteners
  • Self-repairing zippers, rubber bottom treads

Design and Aesthetics

The Skooba Satchel 2.0 comes in five different color combinations.  The satchel I received was the black/blue combination.  The outside of the bag was black ballistic nylon with a blue stripe on the front pocket. The stitching on the side and in the shoulder strap, as well as few of the zippers, are in blue.


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The inside of the satchel is lined in blue nylon pack cloth which looked a little cheap.  The stitching, buckles, and zippers are in black. 

The front pocket on the satchel contains one large zippered pocket, two smaller Velcro pockets and four open pockets.  The four open pockets are shaped to be used for storing pens, markers, and pencils. The Velcro pockets would be useful for storing a cell phone, checkbook, iPod, make-up, sunglasses, flash drives, etc.  The large zippered pocket could hold a graphing calculator, office supplies, an external mouse, digital camera, bottle of lotion, snacks, etc.  There is also a metal clip for attaching keys.


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The main compartment consists of the laptop sleeve and a divider panel.  The divider panel has Velcro to hold it in place and can be used to store folders, loose files, or text books. The panel has two large open mesh pockets for holding a power cord, external mouse, CDs, and other loose office supplies. 


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The laptop sleeve is sewn into the bag and has an adjustable, quick-release buckle.  The sleeve has the Skooba Patented Air Square system to protect the notebook.  Skooba describes the Air Square protection system as "hundreds of individual, air-filled cells that support and protect computer from the daily bump and grind."  The air-filled cells surround the laptop from every side and seem to absorb some impact although I wasn’t exactly throwing the bag around.

Besides the two large sections, there is a mesh pouch for a water bottle that hides away in its own zippered compartment on the side of the bag. And on the back of the satchel, there is a large zippered pocket that can could hold a magazine, newspaper, loose papers, an extension cord, etc.

Using the bag

The Skooba Satchel 2.0 was easy to use. One of the most important things for me on a bag is the shoulder strap.  The Skooba Satchel 2.0 comes with the Skooba Superbungee Strap.  It’s made from the same air-filled cells that protect the laptop so it’s very comfortable to wear.  The strap has durable stitching and metal clasps that connect to metal hooks so there is no chance of the strap ripping from the bag while carrying it. The Skooba Superbungee Strap is one great addition to this bag.


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Besides being great to carry around, it was easy to stay organized with all the pockets.  That’s an important aspect for notebook bags because there can be many accessories that go with notebooks not to mention personal items. 

The Skooba website claims that the Satchel 2.0 can carry most 17" notebooks.  I didn’t have a 17" notebook to test it out but that claim seems to be true.  It fit my Dell Latitude D620 with room to spare.  However, If you have an oversized 17" notebook like the Toshiba Qosmio G45, you’ll want to go with a larger bag.

The Satchel 2.0 kept my laptop secure with the adjustable strap and the air-filled pockets seems to absorb more shock than just plain padding, although this is an opinion since I’m pretty careful with my laptop.

After carrying around the satchel for about two weeks, I noticed that the ballistic nylon started to show signs of wear on the edges of the bag.  It wasn’t a huge deal, but it started to fray a small amount. 

Conclusion

The Skooba Satchel 2.0 was comfortable and attractive, two huge pluses in my book.  It seems to protect my laptop as well if not better than other bags I’ve reviewed.  My main concern would be that the ballistic nylon started wearing on the edges.

Another small concern would be price.  The Skooba Satchel 2.0 is being sold for $99.95.  While that doesn’t scream overpriced, there are many bags from other manufacturers with similar build quality which cost less.

Overall, I enjoyed using the Skooba Satchel 2.0 but aside from a few attractive design elements and an excellent strap there is little to distinguish this bag from multiple laptop bags I’ve seen. 

Pros

  • Several design choices
  • Fits most laptops
  • Comfortable shoulder strap
  • Multiple pockets for easy organization

Cons

  • Ballistic nylon started to show signs of wear
  • Nylon pack cloth lining looked cheap

 

Pricing and Availability

The Skooba Satchel 2.0 can be purchased via the Skooba Design website, or through a registered dealer. The Skooba Satchel 2.0 is $99.95. In addition, the excellent Skooba SuperBungee Strap is also available as a separate purchase if you want to add it to your existing bag. If you purchase the strap alone it is $25.95.


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