Arc'teryx Granville 10 Review
Compare prices at 2 resellers Pros: Waterproof, comfortable, lightweight, highly durable, ambidextrous shoulder strap
Cons: Tips over easily when set down, doesn't have very many pockets, expensive
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Our Analysis and Test Results
Sleek, strong, and sophisticated, the Granville is a fantastic bag to consider for those that value both minimalism and bomber craftsmanship.
The Granville is a comfortable bag due to a few key design elements. The padded back panel conforms nicely to the curves of the body while providing cushioning and stability. The shoulder strap is wide and comfortable without being super thick and cumbersome. It's also usable on either shoulder, a small but thoughtful feature that many bags do not offer. The cross-body stabilizing strap can connect via any of the many lash points along the strap, and it extends nice and long for a more customized fit. Even the zipper pulls are a custom ergonomic design!
Packing & Organization
The Granville is one of the more minimal bags in our review. This isn't a bad thing and is even a bonus for the right person, but it does limit your options when it comes to small loose items like cords, snacks, chapstick, and pens. Other than the main compartment, this bag only has a padded laptop sleeve and two zip pockets: a large mesh one on the front of the laptop sleeve and a smaller one with a key clip on the outside under the front flap. Unless you carry a ton of random miscellaneous objects, you will be fine, and even if you do, a supplemental accessory pouch will be all you need to stay organized.
There's nothing ground-breaking here; the Granville does what it needs to do and nothing more. The padded sleeve carries a 13-inch laptop with ease, and the padded back panel on the outside made for body comfort helps protect your computer even more. The mesh pocket on the front of the laptop sleeve is large enough to hold a cord and/or mouse. All our belongings felt protected and secure, especially because they were housed in durable waterproof material.
Ease of Use
In most respects, this is a wildly easy bag to use. Clips, strap adjusters, and pockets are all straightforward and predictable. There aren't very many pockets, so you won't get overwhelmed trying to decide what goes where. The cross-body strap can be attached to whatever lash point is best for you, though it's a bit tedious as the loops and clip are tight. However, this isn't an adjustment you will need to make very often. The zipper on the small outer pocket is quite stiff, but it keeps water out (which many don't), so that's more than a fair tradeoff, especially if you live in a wet climate. Our main complaint in regards to this otherwise great bag is that it tends to fall over when set down. Unless it's packed in just the right way, you can expect it to tip over when you set it down. This lessened as the bag broke in, and the stiff fabric softened, but never stopped happening completely.
Wear & Tear
High marks here for sure! Weatherproof nylon ripstop and taped seams mean the Granville is impervious to water. It slides right off and doesn't look back. The padded back panel and strap do hold onto water when saturated, but if you have a bit of sun, they dry quickly. Sharp twigs, rocks, and concrete have nothing on this bag though — it'll last you for years without showing hardly a scratch.
Volume to Weight Ratio
This bag offers an excellent volume to weight ratio, weighing just 1.15 pounds with a 10-liter capacity.
As you might expect, this isn't a particularly cheap bag. Messenger bags often aren't, and Arc'teryx is a pricier brand, though they do tend to make excellent gear. This bag is no exception. If you know you want something for the long haul that can handle weather of all kinds, the heftier price tag on the Granville is probably worth it.
The Granville 10 is a well-made bag with thoughtful design features and highly weatherproof fabric. It's easy and straightforward to use, can adjust to be worn on either shoulder, and is lightweight and comfortable. It's weighted a bit oddly and therefore is tippy when set down on a flat surface, but as the stiff fabric breaks in and you learn to pack it strategically, this annoyance lessens. While there's not a lot of pockets, there's just enough for essentials, and the combo of a padded back panel and a cross-body strap make for a very comfortable wearing experience, particularly on a bike. All in all, this is a great messenger bag that will last, rain or shine, for many years.
— Penney Garrett