Hydration pack specialist Osprey has been gradually expanding their range over the years, and for 2015 they've updated the Syncro by putting it on a bit of a diet, with a claimed a 30% weight reduction compared to the previous model. As the name suggest, the Syncro 15 can carry 15 liters of cargo, and holds Osprey’s own 3 liter reservoir (sold separately) in a dedicated sleeve. The reservoir has an large cap that makes it easy to clean, and the whole thing holds it shape no matter how much water it’s carrying. The hose has an drip-free nozzle and a magnet clip attaches it to the shoulder straps. Biostretch ventilated harness straps at the waist and chest and Osprey’s AirSpeed suspension, a mesh panel stretched over a Lightwire frame, ensure the pack is elevated off your back and held securely in place.
As well as reducing the weight, Osprey has tweaked the harness and back panels on this updated pack to improve the fit and comfort. There are pockets aplenty, including side mesh pockets for easy-to-use food, and a front flap for a rain jacket. Inside, the main compartment is helpfully laid out with smaller pockets for storing tools, tubes and other ride essentials. There’s a soft lined pocket ideal for a smartphone or shades, and a hook for your house/car keys. On the outside there’s Osprey’s unique LidLock helmet attachment and below that, a loop to fix an LED light. There’s even an integrated raincover, a usual addition for riding through a British summer.
The Syncro 15 is available in two sizes and three colours (Blue Racer, Velocity Green, Meteorite Grey. Weight, without a reservoir, is 568g for the size medium/large tested here, and the pack measures 45x26x23cm. MSRP: $120 USD. Pinkbike's Take:
|I reckon the Syncro 15 is about the ideal size for most typical mountain bike rides, with enough storage for the gear needed for everything from a few hours around the woods to a long day in the mountains. The main compartment is adequately sized to house all the usual bits and bobs you need during a ride, and there's plenty of space to stash food and a lightweight jacket if you're expecting a turn in the weather. The layout of the pockets and compartments helps you keep things organized; everything has it own place, and there's no need to turn out the entire pack to find your multitool.|
On the trail, the Syncro is extremely comfortable. The weight is evenly distributed across your back and it stays in place even over rough terrain. The mesh panel does work to keep you cooler; there's noticeably less sweat buildup on warmer days compared to packs that sit flat against the back. The Syncro 15 is very well made, and their haven't been any durability issues during the time I've been testing it (and previous Osprey packs have shown excellent longevity). The plethora of details give added value for money, as well as simply making it nicer to use. If you want a generously sized, yet lightweight pack, with good comfort and a stack of pockets and details - like the rain cover, LED light loop and helmet LidLock - the Syncro 15 is worth considering. - David Arthur
Visit the feature gallery for high resolution and additional images