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Pakuma Akara K1 - Compartments Continued, Features

Ardjuna Seghers

By Ardjuna Seghers
Reviewed:

Summary

Our Score

8/10

Review Price free/subscription

One of the features Pakuma touts for the Akara K1's top compartment is a "headphone out port", but rather than the 3.5mm pass-through cable this description led us to expect (and which is found on some bags), what you get is a gap with slightly overlapping edges. It's nicer to have than not, of course, but its implementation is not as secure as some.

Another music-oriented feature of this compartment is a CD/DVD case which can hold 24 discs. It's completely flexible so doesn't do the best job of protecting your precious media, and we reckon many people probably wouldn't use it: most laptop owners have their music collections in MP3 format, after all, though we suppose it might be handy for bringing a few films or games. Thankfully the case is only attached to the backpack with a strap ending in a plastic clip, so if you don't need it it's easy to remove.

Moving on, the second, lower compartment unzips enough so that you can fold its front open like a book, revealing a divider with a zipped mesh pocket for small items like memory cards, two pen holders and what we assume is a mobile phone pocket with Velcro flap. This latter pocket is very poorly thought out, however. Not only does it lack any padding whatsoever, but you won't be able to fit a wide phone like the Blackberry Bold 9700, or a tall one such as the Samsung Galaxy S. Admittedly quite a few people listen to music on their phones, in which case the top compartment's pocket is the obvious place to keep it, but for those with separate MP3 players this is a disappointment. Regardless, we prefer mobile pockets on the shoulder straps for quick and easy access.

Last if not least the Akara K1 has two mesh side pockets with elastic tops for bottles and the like. Adjustable clip-straps at either side can lend extra support to the bag if needed, or help to keep it compact.

While the backpack is not actually waterproof and doesn't feature a rain cover, Pakuma has made sure all zippered compartments are protected from water ingress for as long as possible with flaps that protrude over the zip. Quite a fuss is made about the zips being YKK-branded, with Pakuma claiming they're "the best in the world", but we didn't find the action quite as smooth as the self-repairing zippers on the Brenthaven Pro 15/17 Backpack. This is reasonable enough considering the Brenthaven costs nearly £100 more, but just don't buy the marketing speak.

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Denis iii

August 10, 2010, 11:17 am

so it definately won't fit a Asus G73jh?

TechVegan

August 10, 2010, 1:15 pm

@Denis_iii:


We didn't have one to hand to try, but the official dimensions would suggest not.

deus1066

August 10, 2010, 7:27 pm

I've used one of Pakumas Choroka bags for the last 4 years and its been an excellent bag. If thats anything to go by, I'm sure this will be an excellent bag.

HarryGlass

August 10, 2010, 7:51 pm

Screams fu***ing ugly to me! Backpacks should be forbidden for anyone who is not actually, well, backpacking. But then I suppose anyone who cares about whether a bag has pockets for cables cares very little about style. Cannot believe TR is reviewing backpacks...

ilovethemonkeyhead

August 10, 2010, 9:41 pm

i've had this for over 2 years now. the rubber (?) lining along the bottom edge has worn away to the point where i can see through it, but then again i've never owned a still functioning bag for so long.

TechVegan

August 10, 2010, 9:47 pm

@HK:


"It's not the most attractive bag around" - our way of saying it was more... diplomatic :)plus "that will make it less likely to be stolen". Also, the black version of the bag is prettier - as usual ;)





Also, considering a backpack is the most convenient way of carrying anything, why would one have to be backpacking to enjoy the advantages?





And last but not least, we've been reviewing backpacks for a very long time, just check the article for some links.

monono

August 10, 2010, 9:53 pm

i've had this for over 3 years now.

TalentMonkey

August 11, 2010, 11:53 am

I've had one for over, not this colour, I've got the black version.


Its a great bag, still good condition and I use it every day on the train.


Definitely worth the small amount of money they cost.

HarryGlass

August 11, 2010, 3:11 pm

@Ardjuna yeah i've seen you have other backpack reviews. Obviously it's up to TR to review whatever it wants and people have commented so it's obviously a useful category for some. I just find it bemusing; next will be mice mats and keyboard covers! While perhaps convenient they are immensely ugly, right next to Crocs & Uggs in my book. Maybe I care how I look too much but I wouldn't be seen dead with one; I might like my gadgets but I don't want to scream "IT nerd" too loudly. I'll take a satchel, shoulder bag or even a man bag over a backpack any day of the week.

Horhay

August 11, 2010, 3:34 pm

I found that carrying a large laptop on a shoulder strap bag was one of the main causes of the backache I had for about two years. Balancing things out with a (not so fancy) rucksack was an almost immediate and tangible benefit. Besides I wouldn't be seen dead with a man bag.

HarryGlass

August 11, 2010, 7:33 pm

@Horhay: nerd ;-)

TechVegan

August 11, 2010, 9:08 pm

@HK & Horhay:


I'm a nerd too, and proud of it :D


Other than that I'm a practical fellow, and (like Horhay) will choose slight reduction in coolness for less backache any day of the week.





Also, HK, we don't just do backpacks: http://www.trustedreviews.com/..., http://www.trustedreviews.com/... and http://www.trustedreviews.com/... to give but three examples.

honest reviewer

December 16, 2011, 2:48 am

i bought this bag as i was impressed with its features and the way it was presented on the website. the moment i received it i was disappointed with the quality. stitching, zips, overall material all not up to the standards you expect. i still thought i will use it and get the feel for it and within a week, a hole in the bag just above the cocoon section. after having a really bad experience with this product, i would advice don't get carried away by it (especially the pakuma website). its not worth it.

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