The new version of the Gregory Deva is similar to the old version we tested, in that this pack has it all. With tons of padding, a pivoting hip belt design, and loads of space and storage options this pack has everything you'll need on your next backpacking trip.
We definitely enjoyed the new and improved Deva, though the pack still has room for improvement.
Comfort and Suspension
Overall, the Deva is an incredibly comfortable backpack. With a women's specific pre-curved harness and hip belt, the backpack carries exceptionally well. Even though the shoulder straps are wide, ladies with narrower shoulders didn't seem to have a problem with them.
The back and shoulder straps are well padded, more so than many of the other backpacks in the review. The Osprey Ariel 65 has a similar amount of padding on the shoulder straps, whereas The North Face Terra 55 has minimal shoulder padding.
This padding and the pack's bomber suspension remain comfortable under heavy pack loads. The waist belt is stiff and well padded with multi-density EVA foam and PreCurve technology. These extra features add bulk but add comfort and protection to areas that are prone to chaffing.
The Deva is more supportive for heavy loads than its sibling, the Gregory Jade 63.
The Deva's new A3 suspension system improves its weight distribution and carrying comfort. Both the shoulder straps and hip belt panels pivot independently, allowing the backpack to remain stable even when you're moving over uneven terrain.
The Deva has a much more substantial suspension system than the Granite Gear Blaze. We do not think the Deva's suspension is ideal for lighter backpacking. We found the Deuter AirContact Lite to provide a similar amount of support, but with less bulk than the A3 suspension on the Deva.
The Deva's suspension is similar to the Arc'teryx Bora 61's system. We think the Bora has the best suspension that utilizes a stabilizing waist belt. It operates as advertised and keeps weight distributed while avoiding sway in the shoulders or hips. The Deva's version of this system doesn't pivot quite as smoothly as the Bora's and feels much bulkier on the body. The hip belt is stiff and cumbersome, lacking the flexibility, and thus the effectiveness, of the Bora hip belt.
We did not like the duel pockets in this pack's lid. They do not connect and made storing anything bulky in the lid nearly impossible.
Unfortunately, all that comfortable padding adds lots of extra weight, which is the downside to the Deva. We weighed it at 5.44 pounds. On the plus side, the newer model is lighter than the previous version we tested, making it comparable to the Osprey Aura 65.
heft is noticeable. The benefit is that it handles a heavy load with superb stability. The downside is that its weight makes it suitable for only a narrow range of adventures. This backpack feels too heavy to carry with a lighter load, and we wouldn't recommend it for long distance trips or lightweight gear. Due to the weight, we found the Deva to be highly comfortable on short to moderate distance backpacking trips.
OGL Measured Volume:
Total Volume = 58 L
Main Bag = 42 L
Pockets = 9 L
Lid = 7 L
We are happy to see that the newest version of the Deva has simpler features than its predecessor. The two large outer pockets featured on the previous model are now one streamlined mesh pocket. Though this pocket is smaller, it is stretchy and less bulky, which we like. This pocket is similar to the one found on the Osprey Aura AG.
This newest version of the Deva has fewer straps overall, which improves the pack's ease of use. The Octal pack is even simpler though, which we appreciate. You can access all of the compartments easily while hiking, including the side pockets, which hold water bottles.
The Deva has only one side water bottle pocket that fits a small bottle. The slimmed down external storage makes this pack lighter and simpler overall, for which we are grateful. One minor complaint is the size of the waist belt pockets, which seemed exceptionally bulky.
Due to its more substantial weight, the Deva is unsuitable for a diverse range of backpacking trips. It doesn't carry light loads comfortably.
Again, the Gregory packs have a useful U-Shaped zipper to access the interior with ease.
We found the Deva
fairly streamlined and easy to adjust. The side compression, shoulder, and bottom straps adjustments are all in logical places. This arrangement makes the pack easy to adjust on the fly.
The torso height also adjusts quickly by using a hook and clip system, which means that there isn't infinite adjustment like you find on The Northface Terra 55, but it does give each size some range in torso height.
This mesh back pocket lacks stretch that most other packs have, that said, it does seem more durable than most.
The large size and variety of organizational options make this backpack ideal for heavy loads. We like it for short to mid-distance travel. Though it would work for longer distances if you're willing to carry more weight. For women who prefer to bring more, not less, the Gregory Deva is a great option. The suspension is substantial, and the pack can carry lots of weight while still providing comfort, making this a workhorse of a pack.
This waterproof pocket is a neat idea, but we found it to be bulky and not super useful.
The Deva is comparable in price to our award-winning packs. At $300, the Deva is a good value for the woman who wants a lot of space and appreciates comfort and capacity. It offers space and exceptional stability when fully packed.
Considering the Gregory Deva's weight and sturdy suspension design, it's ideal for shorter distance trips with mid-to heavy-weight loads. With plenty of space to pack everything you could desire on a backpacking trip, the Deva is one of the most luxurious models in our review. If luxury is what you seek, and you can endure the weight for shorter distance backpacking, then this contender is beyond compare in design features and spaciousness.