13 May

Timbuk2 D-Lux Laptop Messenger Bag (Small) Review

Anyone who is familiar with the Timbuk2 brand and the familiar “whimsical spiral” logo know that they make good, quality products. Some people may find them a bit too “casual” for many applications, though. I, however, like that touch of “casual”, even in my business life, which is why I decided to head back to Timbuk2 after having a much more boring and “corporate” bag for my computer before. I did have a Timbuk2 model a few years back that I didn’t really love, mostly because it lacked in the pocket department — both the number of pockets and the shape of those that were present.

There are some new great features on this bag that make it somewhat more practical than the previous version I had, including a built-in studded laptop sleeve, adjustable cam buckle (to allow easy positioning on the back), cross-strap, and great new color scheme. This newer version even includes the strap pad, which makes it a bit easier on the shoulder. In addition to all of this, I really liked the color scheme, even though I only had three pre-selected configurations to choose from. This thing looks really cool. It’s professional enough for business with that touch of casual.

I’ve learned that even this newer model still has the same shortcomings as the previous model I owned, i.e. all of the pockets with the exception of the large main compartment are really only meant for storing flat items. If you have non-flat items that may be even moderately fragile (glasses in a soft case, portable game system, etc.), you’re not likely to find a real safe place for them in this bag, since the only viable place to put them is in the main area with all your other bigger items (having my power brick in the same pocket as my glasses is not a good plan). So while this is a great bag, I would likely steer clear of it if you plan on carrying varying item types as mentioned; the zip pockets are just too small/flat to accommodate any “3D” items.

Two other (more minor) gripes: I would have liked a slim handle on the top of the flap in order to grab it, say, off of the passenger seat of my car. Try this some time with a messenger bag with ONLY a shoulder strap and you’ll see what I mean. Also, while the material is “water proof”, there’s plenty of gap between the flap and the interior pocket. I would NOT feel comfortable running around in the rain with my laptop in here (or anything water-sensitive, actually).

This is a great bag despite its few shortcomings. I grabbed mine for around $75 shipped from shoebuy.com (with coupons and discounts), a very very good deal for a bag of this quality. Originally I had considered building my own, but those can easily come out to $150+, so this was at least 50% off. If you like Timbuk2, you’re sure to like this bag, 2. Yes, that was a little wordplay I did there.

6 thoughts on “Timbuk2 D-Lux Laptop Messenger Bag (Small) Review

  1. I’m thinking about getting one of these bags and I have a 13″ MacBook Pro. Do you think the small size is a good fit for you? Would you have enough room for your laptop plus a change of clothes? Thanks for the review.

  2. Hi David,

    I really like the size actually. I downsized from a much larger laptop bag that was heavy and hard to manage. This is great for my needs. I think a 13″ Macbook will fit, but it will be close; it might be just perfect. For clothes, yes there is probably room as long as they are not too bulky. T-shirt and jeans probably, but you wouldn’t be able to add a hoodie or something.

  3. i just got the small version of this bag from ebags.com (20% off right now). i have the 13″ macbook and it fits just right. agree with the comments about pockets… i wish they still had the built in organizer, looks like with these modular ones, there’s less pockets.

  4. Great, thanks for the feedback Peter! Pretty sure you wouldn’t want to go any larger than 13″ though.

  5. thanks for the video review. I’m trying to decide on this red stripe and the lime stripe one but I can’t decide. Would you be able to post up high res pictures of this bag onto your review possibly? thanks

  6. Great review! I have a similar laptop as yours the X100e. I originally bought the Timbuk2 Freestyle, but found it was too small :-/. I found your review and think I found my perfect fit! I’m awaiting its arrivals as we speak.

    Dave from San Antonio, Texas

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