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Osprey Ozone Duplex 60 - Women's Review

This is a clever travel backpack that can be used in one or two parts, making it easy to carry on and transport your items over longer distances.
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Price:  $220 List | $219.95 at Amazon
Compare prices at 2 resellers
Pros:  Versatile, durable, comfortable to carry in different ways
Cons:  Complicated design takes some figuring out, some features get in the way of others
Manufacturer:   Osprey
By Lyra Pierotti ⋅ Review Editor  ⋅  May 10, 2019
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64
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#9 of 15
  • Comfort - 25% 6
  • Features - 25% 7
  • Packing & Accessibility - 20% 5
  • Durability - 15% 7
  • Weight Per Volume - 15% 7

Our Verdict

The Ozone Duplex 60 travel backpack from Osprey is an intriguing and creative solution to a variety of travel scenarios. It can be carried as one unit, or separated into two. As two bags, it is a simple system that can be carried on to an airplane as your carry on and personal item; when the two are hubbed together, the larger bag clips on to the outside. At first, this may seem backward and uncomfortable, as if it would make the heaviest bag further from your body, and therefore torque on your shoulders, but it is actually quite clever. Your bulkier items (like clothing) go in the outer bag, so this part of the bag may look bigger but is likely to be the lighter weight of the two.

The Duplex lost points, however, for some fiddley features and cumbersome details. Sometimes the bag seemed to get in its own way, and required some training to figure out how best to use it. For a reversed take on the double backpack model, check out this similar model from Osprey, the Farpoint 55.


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Pros Versatile, durable, comfortable to carry in different waysGood suspension, lightweight, affordable, gobbles gearVersatile, duffel-like ease of use, just the right balance of travel featuresVersatile, durable, comfortable, intuitiveLightweight, durable, affordable, highly versatile, can become a daily use duffel
Cons Complicated design takes some figuring out, some features get in the way of othersSquare design protrudes from back, too big for some airlines checked baggageBackpack straps not comfortable for long distances, gear sags in soft structure when not fullSmall hip belt, not best for long distances with heavy loadsLess organization features, not set up for traveling with electronics
Bottom Line This is a clever travel backpack that can be used in one or two parts, making it easy to carry on and transport your items over longer distances.The Porter 46 is a durable, easy to pack travel backpack, but may be bulky for some airlines or uses.Another stellar product from Patagonia; thoughtfully designed, rugged, easy to use, and fortified by the Ironclad guarantee and cutting edge company ethics.The Overhaul is an excellent, versatile, and intuitive travel backpack with well balanced features.A great small duffel with shoulder straps for a variety of travel purposes.
Rating Categories Ozone Duplex 60 Osprey Porter 46 Patagonia Black Hole MLC The North Face Overhaul 40 Eagle Creek Cargo Hauler 45L
Comfort (25%)
10
0
6
10
0
8
10
0
6
10
0
8
10
0
6
Features (25%)
10
0
7
10
0
8
10
0
9
10
0
8
10
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5
Packing & Accessibility (20%)
10
0
5
10
0
9
10
0
9
10
0
8
10
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8
Durability (15%)
10
0
7
10
0
8
10
0
9
10
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7
10
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8
Weight Per Volume (15%)
10
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7
10
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7
10
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7
10
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6
10
0
9
Rank (%)
10
0
8
10
0
1
10
0
2
10
0
3
10
0
4
Specs Ozone Duplex 60 Osprey Porter 46 Patagonia Black... The North Face... Eagle Creek Cargo...
Volume of Main Pack 60 L 46 L 45 L 41 L 45 L
Measured Weight 4.43 lbs 3.23 lbs 3.35 lbs 3.78 lbs 1.61 lbs
Dimensions (Inches) 21 x 15 x 13.5 21 x 14 x 12 22.8 x 8.6 x 14.5 21 x 12 x 7 22.75 x 8.75 x 12.5
Carry-on Size? 22 x 14 x 9 in Yes, if separated Must be cinched down Yes, if squished Yes, if not stuffed Yes, if squished
Volume of Daypack N/a N/a N/a N/a N/a
Measured when stuffed (inches) 23x14x13 22x14x12 22x14x10 21x13x10 22x13x9
Fabrics 210D Nylon Honey Comb Contrast Thread, 450D Packcloth 420D Nylon Hex Diamond Ripstop, 420HD Nylon Packcloth Polyester ripstop with TPU laminate 420-denier ripstop nylon Bi-Tech Armor Lite
Frame Type Padded backpanel Stiff foam Foam backpanel Molded padding None
Access Type Top and panel loading Panel loading, zips all the way open Clamshell design Panel loading Top and panel loading
# of Pockets 3 zippered 5
Laptop sleeve Yes Yes Yes Yes No
Waist Belt Type Padded Padded None Unpadded strap N/a
Sternum Strap Yes Yes, whistle Yes Yes No
Different sizes? No No No No Yes
Volume Options 60L, 65L 30L, 46L, 65L N/a N/a 60L, 90L, 120L

Our Analysis and Test Results

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.

Performance Comparison


The Ozone Duplex 60 from Osprey morphs from one bag into two for a variety of travel uses.
The Ozone Duplex 60 from Osprey morphs from one bag into two for a variety of travel uses.

Comfort


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 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 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.

For a similar hubbed design, check out the Osprey Farpoint 55, which reverses the design and puts the day pack on the outside. We also really liked the Kelty Redwing series for ultimate carrying comfort, though it has a more outdoorsy look and feel and function. And for a super comfortable and more "traditional" travel backpack with a classic clamshell design, check out the Cotopaxi Allpa.

Features


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 “duffel†style bag  getting ready to board the plane.
Here we are disconnecting the small backpack from the larger “duffel†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 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.
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 “suitcase†so your contents don’t get too jumbled in transit.
The internal compression flaps are like a jacket for your jackets! This is a nice feature for a soft sided “suitcase†so your contents don’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.

Durability


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 OGL Test Load (left) and how much of it fit into the bag.

If you're looking for ultralight travel options, check out the REI Stuff Travel 20 backpack for a day bag that you can bring with you on your travel adventures. If you're looking for an outdoor crossover bag, we really liked the lightweight Kelty Redwing as well.

Value


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.
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.

Conclusion


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.



Lyra Pierotti