The Osprey Ozone Duplex 60 can be many things: a single backpack, a carry-on, and personal item, or a duffel for the hotel with a handy day pack for around town or even on hikes or other outdoor adventures.
The Ozone Duplex 60 from Osprey morphs from one bag into two for a variety of travel uses.
Osprey has long been known to make some of the most comfortable backpacks in the industry of all backpacks. They recently revolutionized comfort in their alpine climbing backpacks, then we noticed this interesting new take on the travel backpack.
The first thing it does well to improve comfort is the way your travel gear is organized. The backpack separates into two parts, with the larger suitcase-like part attaching like a tortoise shell onto the back of a smaller, slim daypack-sized backpack. The frame is built with sturdy but svelte straps and suspension, but this organization scheme also improves comfort. Since your heavy electronics and books fit best in this smaller pack, this puts heavy items next to your back; when you hub the larger outer bag on top of the smaller one, you're most likely putting bulky but lighter items (like clothing) on the outside of the bag. This helped reduce the torque effect of an otherwise bulky backpack (when the two are stacked into one and stuffed full, it did protrude a ways).
The hip belt is minimal but effective on the Osprey Ozone Duplex 60.
The suspension of the Ozone Duplex is very well made. The straps are wide to distribute weight, and the firm padding improves support and long term durability. We liked the hip belt as well; it was big enough to be functional and wrap around our hips, but small enough to be discrete and not cumbersome.
If you're carrying this whole system on to an airplane, you will need to separate the two bags. The larger outer bag then turns in to something like a duffel that you can sling over your shoulder while wearing the backpack. This was not the most comfortable way to carry the bag, overall, at least for our testers.
The Ozone Duplex is a great travel pack if you want to avoid checking a bag. Just detach and you have two bags, one carry on and one personal item.
The Ozone Duplex earns uniqueness points in the Features department. The hubbed design was much easier to manage than we had expected. The bottoms attach with sewn buckles, then you attach the upper corners with an adjustable buckle much like the one that keeps your heel in place in a pair of ski boots. It's something of a "progress capture" system so if your bag is packed to the brim, you just need to push them together until you hear one click. If it's less stuffed, you'll get more clicks making the bag fit together more tightly.
Here we are disconnecting the small backpack from the larger â€œduffelâ€ style bag, getting ready to board the plane.
The bag then can be separated, and the outer portion becomes a duffel of sorts. It has a sturdy grab handle as well as a detachable shoulder strap, which gives you many carrying options. We liked the organization scheme and pockets on the Duplex overall. The smaller daypack was particularly well thought out for your electronics and essentials for a day out on the town, or even for a light hike.
The small backpack handles our heavier, denser objects very well with padding for our electronics and an easy access circumferential zipper that opens into the main compartment.
The outer bag also has a separate compartment which perfectly fit our toiletries bag. One of our biggest stressors in transit is having our shampoo explode all over our clothing. This helped put our travel minds at ease, even if we had to check that half (or 2/3) of the bag last minute.
Packing & Accessibility
If we stopped rating bags after the first two metrics, Comfort and Features, the Ozone Duplex may have been more competitive in the travel backpack category. However, Osprey seems to have gotten distracted by the novelty of the Duplex and didn't pay enough attention to accessibility. The pockets that made most sense for our wallet and passport were very tricky to access when the two bags were hubbed together, which made the bag feel cumbersome during travel.
When the bags are hubbed together, this small pocket is the most logical one for a wallet or passport, but the shoulder straps must be unclipped to access it. This is one example of how the Ozone Duplex can be quite fiddley to use.
The outer bag is also very soft and supple, without much of a frame, and shaped to hub onto a backpack. This made it carry a bit awkwardly, and floppily, when it was detached. The bag was much better when joined to make one backpack, and not as great separated. That outer bag does have internal compression straps and flaps that help keep your contents secure, much like other soft bags like the Patagonia MLC.
The internal compression flaps are like a jacket for your jackets! This is a nice feature for a soft sided â€œsuitcaseâ€ so your contents donâ€™t get too jumbled in transit.
For another take on a travel backpack that can be separated into two, check out the Osprey Farpoint 55. This one has a small daypack on the outside that can be removed once you get to your destination, or carried on the front something like a marsupial pocket.
The Ozone Duplex is made of a combination of thoughtfully placed lighter weight 210 denier nylon with more durable 450 denier Packcloth. The zippers are smooth and large, and some are lockable. The D ring attachment system for the shoulder strap is thick and sturdy. Overall, high marks for durability—as usual from Osprey.
Weight & Capacity
Due to the thoughtful use of lighter weight fabrics where possible, the Ozone Duplex travel backpack is relatively light for a 60-liter backpack, which is of decent capacity size. It scores above average in this metric as well.
The OGL Test Load (left) and how much of it fit into the bag.
The Ozone Duplex by Osprey is not a bargain travel backpack. However, Osprey has a strong reputation for well-made products, so we are confident that if this bag suits your needs, you'll feel it was well worth the cost.
Ready to board with our carry on and personal item! The Osprey Ozone Duplex is a clever and useful bag, though fiddley and cumbersome at times.
The Osprey Ozone Duplex 60 is an intriguing and useful travel backpack. The hubbed, or "tortoise shell" design makes it highly modular and adaptable for urban and airline travel. We appreciated that the smaller daypack (with the electronics pockets) kept heavy items close to our back, making the pack useful as an around town backpack. The beneficial pockets also allow for light hiking. Overall, the Duplex is a highly versatile and exciting backpack that lost some points due to some fiddley and awkward features, such as valuable pockets blocked by the hubbed outer bag.