Anatomy Of A Lightweight Laptop Backpack

The laptop backpack and bag market is only 20 years old. The future trend for laptop backpacks will the in the ultralight, light and lightweight bag segments. Let's look at the fabric and material landscape to learn more about the anatomy of a lightweight laptop backpack or bag.

It is safe to say that the scope, quality and strength of textile materials has been advancing rapidly since the 1990's. The 90's saw a massive increase in coated, water-resistant and waterproof lightweight nylons. One of the popular commercial fabrics of these types that became much more popular was DuPont's Cordura. Cordura was the preferred premier fabric for the outdoors sports industries, like skiing and snowboarding.

Cordura also made its way into the bag and accessory industries, however, because of its quality and price, it was reserved for only high-performance brands.

Cordura paved the way for the world's most popular outdoor activewear fabric, GORE-TEX. Gore-Tex revolutionized the outdoor sports industry in terms of performance, weight, water resistance, and brand prestige.

In the 2010's, we've seen an explosion of amazing, high-quality fabrics like new, lighter weight Cordura and Gore-Tex variants, Pertex, as well as an explosion of extremely high quality secondary and tertiary fabric manufacturers. With the explosion of secondary and tertiary vendors, we've also seen a vast expansion of water resistant coating applications. Instead of the traditional polyurethane laminate coatings, we are seeing great advancements in thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU) coatings. We have a host of incredible new coatings that are lightweight, featherweight and ultralight, amazingly water resistant, and also incredibly breathable.

Fabric is the core of the lightweight laptop backpack

The lightweight laptop bag or backpack must be water resistant and strong. A $3,000 laptop like the top-line Macbook Pro must be protected from moisture and water, and the fabric must not tear or rip, causing risk of a massive laptop disaster. In the last decade, there has been a massive increase in strength-to-weight ratios of modern nylon and polyester coated fabrics. Modern fabrics also have incredible abrasion resistance. Most of our laptop bags are radically over-engineering, able to handle much more weight and abrasion than we think.

Our Ultralight Laptop Day Pack, which is the lightest laptop backpack in the world, uses a special double-coated nylon that is incredible strong, abrasion resistant, and completely waterproof. This fabric comes directly from the progression beyond Gore-Tex lineage that we discussed previously.

Coated nylon waterproof laptop backpack bag fabric

Impact resistance is essential

Many lightweight, light and ultralight laptop backpacks and bags do a terrible job protecting expensive laptops from impacts and vibration. We have all seen a lightweight laptop backpack with a flimsy and weak foam laptop sleeve, that doesn't even protect the bottom corners of the laptop. This is a sad sight. Imagine, you buy a brand new Microsoft Surface Pro, only to accidentally drop your laptop bag and smash the corner of your laptop.

Our Ultralight Laptop Day Pack is a light laptop backpack that uses a special high-density ultralight foam that we sourced specifically to protect expensive laptops. This foam can withstand massive amounts of repetitive compression over time, without losing its protective qualities.

laptop sleeve impact protection macbook pro 15/16 inch

Design ergonomics make the bag usable and efficient

Design ergonomics are an important consideration of a great lightweight laptop bag or backpack. Design ergonomics can affect ease of access into the bag, and also postural and pain considerations like:

  • Can I easily access the external entry pockets?
  • Can I easily operate the zippers on all external pockets?
  • Can I easily access the internal pockets or pouches?
  • Do the straps have an ergonomic design that help alleviate neck pain?
  • Do the straps have an ergonomic design that help alleviate shoulder pain?

Our Ultralight Laptop Day Pack is designed to address all of the above. In addition to being the lightest laptop backpack you can find, it wears even lighter, with special ergonomic straps that are designed to reduce pressure and pain on your neck, shouders and back.

lightweight light laptop backpack design ergonomics easy to use

Quality components are the final ingredient

Zippers and buckle components make up the final ingredient to the perfect ultralight, light or lightweight laptop backpack or bag. Some back designers and manufacturers try to save money on zippers and hardware buckles and snaps by using unknown or grey-market suppliers. This always ends with an inferior product. Quite simply, YKK is the best. There are a few suppliers that come close, but those smaller suppliers just don't get things perfect like YKK does. YKK's quality standards are the highest anywhere. Their zippers are the smoothest, most pliable, most water resistant, and so on. They're just the best! YKK's plastic hardware is also a step above the competition.

For our Ultralight Laptop Day Pack we use only custom YKK water-resistant zippers and their most lightweight buckles and plastic components. We use the best, so that we can expect zero failures for our great customers.