Summary

Our Score

8/10

Review Price free/subscription

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While technology is constantly evolving, the way we carry it around with us generally remains fairly static. Indeed, the great thing about buying a quality laptop bag or backpack is that you can still be using the same one in 20 years time – now how many laptops can you say that about? Let's see if the Pakuma Akara K1 backpack can match the likes of the Dicota BacPac Xtreme.

Unloaded the bag weighs 1.3kg, and it has an internal volume capacity of 23 litres, measures 34 x 16.5 x 51cm, and can hold 15 to 17-inch laptops (the compartment's exact dimensions are 30 x 5.1 x 39cm). According to the Pakuma website it will take "all PC and Apple notebooks from 15.4" to 17", but we can't see it fitting a gaming monster along the lines of the Asus G73jh and the backpack's physical tag modifies that to "most". Still, it's a level above your average budget backpack, which usually only takes laptops up to 16in.

Though you can get the Akara K1 in various black & tan colour combinations, with our favourite being the simple black model with grey piping, our sample arrived sporting "Savannah Green" panels and "Minky Brown" piping – and no, we don't have any idea what 'minky' means in this context either, as we can't for the life of us associate brown backpack piping with a sexy woman. It's not exactly a designer backpack, but doesn't shout cheap or ugly either.

Unzipping the backpack's main compartment reveals the laptop pocket (which we'll get to later) with flap and space for other products in front of it. There's also a small mesh pocket with a Velcro fastening here, but its low positioning means that anything else you put into the bag is going to land on top of the items stored here, which negates its usefulness somewhat. Having this mesh pocket near the top rather than at the bottom of the compartment would perhaps have been more logical.

At the bag's front you'll find a further two zippered compartments, marked out in green to show their size and shape. The top one features an internal pocket to hold your MP3 player. It has some padding at the front but none at the back, so again you have to be careful what you put in the Akara K1's main compartment. We certainly wouldn't be happy putting something as expensive as an iPhone 4 in here.

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