|I must come clean. I am a gadget freak. |
This isn't necessarily a good thing. Quite contrary, it's rather bothering.
There are some enormous shortcoming in being such a creature.
One of the biggest that comes to mind is that I have became so depended on technology, that I lug around devices worth thousands of dollars with me every day.
Just to give you a taste of what I'm talking about. I carry with me, day in day out:
My Palm (of course) in a protective case, my digital camera, my laptop, my Disc Man (sorry people, but I am not a huge fan of compressed music), a pair of quality Yamaha headphones, my GoType portable keyboard, a few CF and SM cards, my cellular phone, a bunch of CD's, a spare sync cable plus a portable CF reader.
And that's without naming all the non-electornic accessories I just have to carry.
So what's the problem you ask? Well the problem is that with lugging so many items around, beside the constant fear of "have I lost anything?" :), is HOW you actually able to carry such things. With what bag exactly?
Isn't it only natural to assume that since there are more and more new gadgeteers joining the cycle every week and day, there should be a bag specifically designed to carry along all of the electrical and non electrical items you need?
Well, I can now say that there is at least one bag suited for this task. One bag that will allow you to carry all your expensive electronic equipment with you all day. The WaterField Cargo bag.
The W/F Cargo bag is a combination of what's best in so many different bag designs. You get the storage space of a backpack, the ace and convenient of a brief case and the looks of the latest designer's bag. So what's there not to like?
This is a bag exclusively designed for the professional user. Or as I like to call it (and please excuse me if this offends you :) the "Geek". with a capital "G".
Front view. Attractive? Yes sir!
Here's looking at you, kid...
As you inspect the W/F Cargo bag, you first notice that it's a very quality made bag.
The fabrics this bag was constructed from are very rigid and durable, there are no loose parts, no torn places and the entire construction is surprisingly solid.
The W/F cargo bag is decorated on it's front using a very interesting, and obviously unique "Indium" pattern sowed into the bag's flip cover.
It's this pattern that actually makes and breaks the design of this bag. As beside this little eye candy, the rest of the bag is just black. Elegant but plain black. Not very interesting to glaze at. :)
This decorative pattern is available in five different colors. Ranging from deep cool "Celeste" (as on my bag) to the eye catching "Taxi". Anyone should find one he is attracted to.
When I first started loading things into my cargo bag, I noticed it's very efferent use of storage space. You see, the cargo bag isn't very big in size, yet I managed to fit a TON of stuff into it. I can only give you my personal experience, where I was able to fit (yes, I am going to repeat that long list from the beginning of the review... excuse me... :) my Palm in it's protective case, my Disc man with a collection of several discs, my GoType portable keyboard, somewhat large pair of YAMAHA headphones a wallet for CF and SM cards and a USB card reader.
Plus four different full-size notebooks (interchangeable with my laptop) to that list, two computer science books and an encyclopedia volume (letter "T" if you are interested... :). Probably all that a gadgeteer needs to carry along.
Oh yes, and not to forget my Samsung Cellular phone, that easily slipped into the Cargo Bag's side mounted pocket.
It's very pleasing that a bag with such a small size managed to provide so much room. I never came to expect this from a shoulder carried bag. And even fully loaded, it didn't feel cramped.
Another thing that just screamed "LOOK AT ME" (didn't it? :) when I started to use the bag was the oversized silver clip so bravely placed on the bag's front.
This clip belongs on a 747! :)
This clip defiantly looks like something that belongs on a 747! no kidding! grossly oversized (not even GOING there... :), but hey... I like it...
What's so ingenious about this clip is that you can easily open it using only one hand.
This clip is also very attractive, prone to scratches (so be careful!), but attractive.
WaterField managed to create a very gorgeous bag with their Cargo Bag line, and it's a shame the photo's don't do justice with it.
Testing... Testing... 11... 12...
There are no less than twelve(!) different pockets and compartments available inside and outside of the cargo bag. Can you believe it?
Okay, true, while some of these pockets are rather small and located inside other, bigger compartments, they do contribute to the main benefit of this luxurious layout - which allows you to really slice what ever you may carry into allot of different categories, each in a different set of pockets, so that you can organize your stuff in a logical and convenient way.
The overall bag layout is a bit hard to show in the pictures, so I will have to compensate that by trying my best to explain how it's made.
The most accessible pocket on this bag is the one located on the Cargo Bag's flip cover (where the texture is sowed).
This pocket is not big in size, but it does allow you to place an item like the GoType Palm keyboard without feeling cramped in any way.
However, I don't place my GoType here, I preferred to place my palm inside this pocket, with a couple of stylus pens thrown inside for convenient, so that I can have easy access whenever I need to input data onto my Palm.
Behold! the WaterField Design Cargo bag!
As you open the 747 clip (sorry, couldn't resist) and flip the textured indium cover over, you revel the first (of many) segment of pockets. No less then four.
First, the front one is a zipper based oval pocket, one large enough to fit a CD player, headphones and a multitude of audio CD's. Inside this pocket you find another pocket, one that I use to store a couple of cables I need from time to time (such as a Palm serial sync cable).
As we continue on our little "pocket" expedition, we find that behind this front mounted pocket, there are another two, narrower pockets. Ones that I use as a place for me to store a few sets of batteries (For my Palm, DiscMan, Digital camera).
Now, the biggest compartment in this cargo bag is located at the bag's top and accessed without the need to flip the cover up. a nice design detail indeed.
This main storage compartment easily opens up (using a zipper) reveling two sets of usable pockets, but with no divider.
What do I mean?
Well, beside the big storage space you have at your disposal as you open the zipper, you find a set of secondary pockets inside. A set of 4 pockets in one "sheet" placed at it's inner side.
This "sheet" contains the bag's smallest pockets, but ones that can hold any sort of office supplies you might need to carry with you. I use them mainly for different writing instruments I require to keep near me. But they could be more
versatile then that, and even hold something as a scientific calculator, your wallet, or anything else you can think of.
The last "feature" at your disposal at this compartment is a nifty little clip you can use to hang your keys inside the bag. Nice indeed.
The main compartment I was just talking about can pretty much hold anything you throw in it. If you want to take my example, I stuffed an encyclopedia volume, a few full-sized notebooks and a couple of computer books into this compartment without problems or even starting to stretch it's capacity.
It's from my experience I can tell you that the main compartment is able to store as much volume as most backpack bags these days (which are famous for having more storage space then shoulder carried bags).
It was clear to me by now that the W/F Cargo bag has enough volume for a busy university student to carry all the paperwork and notebooks he might need, all day long with him.
If you think our compartment excursion is over, boy! you are wrong!
There are a couple more compartments we haven't gone over just yet.
The first is located at the absolute back of this bag and is Velcro closed. This is where you can keep a mini-notebook laptop or as I, my GoType keyboard for the Palm.
The back pocket
The only grip I found is that the Velcro strip isn't very long, meaning this pocket doesn't close as tight as I would like it to, and sometimes open up. :(
The last pocket on the Cargo bag is a side mounted cellular phone pocket. Placing my Samsung SCH811 phone into that pocket went without a hiccup, and made retrieval of the phone when ever I need very easy.
Cellular phone pocket (don't worry, it's a long pocket, my cellular isn't inserted all the way here).
Mobile is my name, portability is my game!
The W/F Cargo bag has got to be one of the more portable bags I ever used. Unlike other shoulder carried bags (a design that I find it much easier to lug around then a back carried back), the size of the W/F cargo bag is JUST PERFECT! not as big as some shoulder bags (rendering them difficult to carry) and not too small as other shoulder bags (rendering their storage space too small for me to use). Just a perfect size for me to carry all I need (and trust me, I DO need allot) without compromising mobility.
The shoulder strap on the Cargo bag is adjustable to your liking, but is not padded. A compromise I don't see why I have to make, but every bag has some shortcomings.
Beside carrying the bag with your shoulder, there is another transportation method for the Cargo bag, one that is less preferable by myself, but some could like it.
What I am talking about is using the build in (and this time, padded) carrying handles.
This might be the preferable choice if you need to pick up the bag and carry it over a short distance, but I didn't find this way comfortable when I had to carry the bag for a longer time.
It's... It's.... YELLOW!
this is a little thing I couldn't write my review without mentioning.
The cargo bag is colored inside with a bizarre shade of yellow.
This I really don't understand. Why did W/F Decide to make their bag padded with such bright color on it's interior remains a mystery to me, but at least I am not half as annoyed from this as I initially were. I still don't like it, but it doesn't bother me as much as it did before.
The horror! the unspeakable Horror! (it's yellow you know...)
Quick! Hide! A meteor shower! :)
I have tested the Cargo bag for a considerable period of time. And in this time I can to a couple of conclusions:
The first one is that this bag has got to be one of the most durable, protective and mobile bags I ever used.
By durable I mean that it would probably event survive an event as a meteor shower! (Unlike the user I think... :)
I really feel obligated to compliment W/F design for making a bag with such great materials. But considering the overall price of the bag (that I will talk about in a second or so) I didn't expect anything less.
By protective I mean that this bag is well padded. The padding is there so that it can protect the electronic gizmos you would probably carry within.
I am not saying that this bag could, or would, replace a protective case for your Palm or laptop, but it would augments that case nicely.
And by 'mobile' I mean that I was able to carry the bag along with me wherever I went without feeling bothered by the size or weight.
The cargo bag itself is very light, and feels natural to carry along.
The biggest, and perhaps only "major" downside to this bag is the overwhelming price. About $149!
That's a considerable amount of money to pay for a fabric-made bag, but hey, I won't lie if I say it's worth it, because it does. Trust me, IT DOES.
The Cargo bag is a perfect solution to the ever-growing market of gadgeteers, tech professionals and not to forget, Geeks.
A bag that is crafted from surprisingly strong materials (such as Ballistic Nylon and Indium) - this is one bag that should last a long time.
The Cargo bag combines the generous storage space of a backpack, convenient of a brief case and the looks of a designer made shoulder bag.
If you are looking for a protective bag that has a small footprint but ample storage space, one that has a multitude of internal and external pockets, one that is durable and has a very sleek "neo" look, than you should really look no further, as this "Cargo" bag is as good as they come.
My only grip is the high price, $50 less, and this would be a must-have!
If you can deal with the price, you should get this great looking "Neo" bag immediately.