TV-BAY August 13 issue 80

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A bag for life ...? an Elite PELI U100 Urb ack Laptop Backp REVIEWED by Simon Tillyer W e’re a big user of PELI cases here at tv-bay. We use them for what they were designed for... and then some with attempted drownings, drops, drags and dynamite tests! So when I was offered the chance to try out the new PELI Elite Laptop Backpack I jumped at the chance. My Workstation Specialists PC is loaded with pretty much everything Adobe can offer as well as being my main office machine, so an essential bit of kit that I need at home, in the office, at trade shows and everywhere in between. You could say I am somewhat attached to it! I add the extra bit of risk to my tech gear by cycling to the office most days which during the year encounters severe weather, the occasional scrape, daily knocks and bashes! Envy is not a nice trait to experience from colleagues but when this backpack arrived the air was green! It certainly looks the business on first glance, however this envy turned to scepticism from some when people do what they do and picked it up. The first thing you’ll notice, apart from stunning looks, is this is not a lightweight rucksack and weighs in at a reassuringly sturdy 3.65KG. Starting at the front is a zipped flap toughened with a rigid plastic outer shell. Inside here you find all sorts of compartments suitable for pens, USB drives, passports, travel docs … you get the idea. The biggest pocket in here is a perfect fit for an iPad and the rigid plastic front gives me confidence that it should be well protected just as well even on the outer of the backpack. 54 | TV-BAY MAGAZINE: ISSUE 80 AUGUST 2013 Next, behind that is another zip giving access to a pocket ideal for stuffing bulkier items in. Right now mine contains a box of business cards, batteries and a brick size PC power supply plus all the cables I’ll ever need. There are pockets in here as well to compartmentalise your stuff. Working back we have a full length zipped area. This is a big space of 16 litres. I’ve had several overnight trips where this has been my only luggage, with space in this part to put clothes needed, it just seems to grow as you put more things in! Next we have the pièce de résistance. With a single catch you open the Peli case part of the backpack. This is intended for your laptop with a supply of foam pads to insert to ensure a good fit for smaller machines and thinner macs. This part of the case doesn’t open far and the laptop just slots in nicely. The interior spec is 39.4 x 26.7 x 3.8 cm so make sure you don’t exceed this, especially the depth, as otherwise the waterproof seals won’t fully close. Note there are two holes either side of this section to insert a padlock if you so desire. The easiest test and one that I’m most likely to encounter on the daily commute is water. With laptop in place I sprayed a jet of water at it for 5 minutes and completely drenched the case. The reputed water tightness of the laptop section is for 30 minutes at 1 metre but even with a few £1000 of machine inside it doesn’t feel right getting it this wet! With a quick shake to remove excess water that had gathered in the seams I found no water ingress at all in the sealed laptop compartment and the zips had held up well with a tiny bit of dampness but nothing significant.