For those times when you don’t want to carry a full sized laptop bag, Speck has introduced a simple and fasionable solution: the TuckPack Notebook Sleeve. Created to hold and protect up to a 13″ laptop, the TuckPack can be carried in a variety of ways: as a messenger style laptop bag with its included shoulder strap attached, as a folio when the strap is removed and the sleeve is tucked under the arm, or as a laptop sleeve when the strap is removed and the TuckPack is placed in a larger bag or backpack.
Available in either “speakeasy black pinstripe” or “coffeehouse brown plaid”, it should be pretty obvious which version I received…
The sleeve measures approximately 13.75″ wide x 10″ tall x 2″ deep, and it is designed to hold a laptop measuring up to 13.5″ wide x 9.5″ tall x 1.5″ thick – in other words, it is perfectly sized to fit a MacBook. Once you get past the spiffy patterns used for the exterior, the TuckPack’s design is pretty basic; closure is achieved when the sticky Velcro on the flap’s bottom corners attaches to the fuzzy Velcro on the sleeve’s front. But for some inexplicable reason, an extremely wasteful 13.5″ long x 1.75″ wide strip of Velcro is used when two much smaller squares would have sufficed.
The back of the sleeve looks like it might have a handy slash pocket present…
…but this is actually the seam which hides the two connectors for the shoulder strap. I bet you thought that I was going to complain that the pocket wasn’t real? Well, I might have, but I liked the hidden connectors so much, as well as the idea of the convertible sleeve to messenger bag, that I am going to give Speck a pass. An external document pocket would have been a nice touch, however.
The removable shoulder strap is composed of 1.5″ nylon webbing, similar to that used in seatbelts; this adjustable length strap has a 12″ long x 2″ wide x 0.5″ thick pad to help relieve the wearer’s shoulder from a full bag’s load.
The interior sports two compartments: a front slash pocket which measures 13″ wide x 9″ tall and which is closed with a modest 1.5″ long x 0.5″ tab of center placed Velcro, and the main padded laptop sleeve pocket. The front pocket is lined in nylon, and is perfectly sized for slim peripheras, such as the MacBook Air’s SuperDrive and a few CDs in their cases, or a paperback.
My MacBook Air fits in the laptop compartment with plenty of room to spare. What I especially like is that when in this pocket, every bit of my laptop is covered and protected by “extra-plush micro-fleece” as well as padding which measures approximately 1/3″ thick.
Perhaps the best part was that when I recently flew with the sleeve, I found that it was not necessary to remove my laptop when going through the airport’s TSA checkpoint; as long as there are no wires or other items laying in the pocket, it complies.
It’s not always necessary to carry a full size laptop bag and all of the gear that usually entails; for times when you want to travel lightly, the Speck TuckPack is just about perfect.
What I Like: Slim, yet can hold more than just the basics; attractive design; laptop does not need to be removed when going through airport security; can be used as a laptop sleeve or as a messenger bag
What Needs Improvement: The 13.5″ long strip of Velcro on the front panel seems extrememly wasteful