Vertically oriented laptop bag for 13" MBP
February 28, 2016 2:46 PM   Subscribe

My new work computer is a 13" Retina Macbook Pro, and I am looking for a new bag to use for commutes and work travel. This has all led to looking at vertical bags, like the Tom Bihn Ristretto. Are there other bags in this vein that I should be looking at as well?

My commute swaps between car, bus, and bike on a regular basis, and I would like to have a simple, good looking, well constructed bag that I can use for all three that carries various cables and dongles, lunch, and the laptop, but not much more. I also want it to easily fit it in an Ortlieb Backroller pannier, without having to turn things sideways, hence the interest in vertical. I already have a Timbuk2 Messenger bag and an enormous mission workshop backpack- I'm looking for something that can't swallow everything so I don't try and carry everything!
posted by rockindata to Computers & Internet (9 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Waterfield has a vertical bag which you might like too.
posted by bluecore at 4:11 PM on February 28, 2016 [1 favorite]

I will say that I bought a Ristretto, and it is the first Bihn purchase that I regret. Everything is just too damn tight. It fits the MBA just fine, with the power cord and a couple of accessories, but nothing else can go into the bag.
posted by megatherium at 5:43 PM on February 28, 2016

I have a Ristretto as well, and I love it! My husband got it for me for Christmas 2014, and it's held up wonderfully for over a year with daily, non-gentle use. Like you, I wanted something that would actually prevent me from carrying too much, so to the extent that megatherium says it's too tight, that's actually a feature, not a bug, for me.

However, I very easily carry my MacBook Air, a handful of 8.5X11 papers, a slim water bottle, and snacks/wallet/keys/etc. I can add my power cable and/or lunch and/or a sweater depending on how much I want to jam things in there, but mine certainly allows me to jam things into it on days when I need to bring more with me. I dunno, maybe just using it for a year has loosened it up?

But it's my favorite bag, works like a charm for me, and gets compliments too!
posted by bananacabana at 6:48 PM on February 28, 2016

STM makes a vertical bag sized for a 13" Mac: . I can't vouch for this particular model, but my STM bag has been excellent for years, with high-quality stitching, materials, and design.
posted by 4th number at 6:58 PM on February 28, 2016

That link should go here:
posted by 4th number at 7:08 PM on February 28, 2016

Seconding the Waterfield recommendation. I've been a satisfied customer of theirs for many years through a few different variants of laptop shapes and sizes, and carry my 15" Retina MacBook Pro in their Staad backpack these days.
posted by HillbillyInBC at 9:50 PM on February 28, 2016

If you're interested in a backpack, the Fjällräven Kånken is nice; I have the 15" laptop size and I love it.
posted by neushoorn at 10:35 PM on February 28, 2016

Have been using an Osprey backpack with an internal sleeve for my 15 inch MBpro. It is comfortable, holding up well and carries of bit of stuff I need for my job (Leatherman, video adapters, etc.)
posted by fluffycreature at 6:25 AM on February 29, 2016

It may be bigger than you're looking for, but I recently got a Novara Dutchtown Bike Pack. It's not perfect, but it does contain some good ideas: Laptop sleeve inside, roll-top closure, pretty weatherproof (so far, anyhow), and it stays upright on the flat base when you set it down. Pretty good for a laptop, notebook, spare jacket, and one or two other items. Not quite big enough to, say, get on an airplane with just what fits inside it.
posted by brennen at 3:32 PM on February 29, 2016

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