Messenger bags are a bit like Marmite, you either love them or your hate them, personally, I have never been much of the fan of the bag design, due to the fact that they are generally poorly constructed, don’t offer much space, and are generally awkward to use and wear.
But I might have found an option that might just convert me and the other non-believers, the Booq Nerve.
This backpack does a range of things right, it’s a 15-inch messenger bag that has been handmade with a durable material named 1680 denier ballistic nylon fabric. It also features a water-repellent coating that should keep your gear safe, no matter the weather.
It all features very durable and sleek to the touch and this continues throughout the bag’s design, with high-quality YKK zippers that are said to be good enough for years of use, along with a nice and well-padded shoulder strap that is a lot more comfortable than other messenger bags that I have used in the past.
The strap also hides a pretty cool feature.
One of the most annoying things about messenger bags is that they are hard to adjust and sometimes they can be hard to take off, Booq solves this problem with a strap that can be adjusted by simply tugging it, which comes alongside a magnetic buckle that allows you to quickly remove the bag and adjust it to your style.
Of course, the biggest feature of the Nerve can be foun on the the inside. Lift up the flap/cover on the front of the Nerve and you will find it’s main storage compartment, within which you will find plenty of space for everything from a notebook all the way up to a laptop up to 15-inches in size.
On the front of the main compartment, you will find a total of three zippers, two on either side and one on the top, the two on either side lead to a full pocket that can be accessed from either side and features a keyring holder on the right. The zipper at the top hides a second full pocket, which could be used for a range of things as there’s quite a lot of space inside.
Behind those two zippered pockets there’s is a compartmentalised section with a range of pouches that allows you to cordon off the things that you are storing. Behind these compartments, you will find the larger pocket that allows you to store the laptop that we mentioned earlier.
I could quite easily store a range of items in this bag, without a problem, including my 13-inch MacBook Pro with Touch Bar, Canon DSLR, power banks, cables, and with extra room to store stuff on the go.
Where this bag succeeds is that it features good security for all of the gear that you are storing, the front cover secures with a couple of velcro straps, along with a buckle for extra security, there’s even a velcro strap on the inside for added security for the individual laptop pouch.
On the back, you also get another pouch that could be used to store something else like a tablet or notebook, along with some pens of something similar within the smaller pocket on the inside.
What makes this particular pocket interesting is that there’s a zipper on both the top and bottom of it, making it easy to get at the stuff that’s inside, without having to open up the flap.
Sadly, with all of that storage, there’s not all that much padding on the inside, especially on the back and bottom of the bag.
But with everything considered, I would definitely recommend the Booq Nerve as it features a fantastically simple yet rugged design, with a number of extra features such as easy to access pockets, a comfortable and easy-to-use strap that makes messenger bags quite interesting again.
It also features a ton of storage, more than enough to store all of the gear that you need on a daily basis, however, that does mean that the bag is quite heavy.
If that’s a turn off for you and you only have a 13-inch laptop, then you might prefer the 13-inch version of the bag, which you can also pick up from Booq.
It is quite expensive at around £175 though.