The Solo Rival Backpack: There’s a Place for Everything

The tagline for the Solo Rival Backpack should be “There’s a place for everything,” because that’s exactly how I felt when I took it on a trip recently. Though plain on the outside, the inside of this bag offers a slew of organizational features waiting to be utilized by the tech-enthusiast traveler. At $79.99, the Solo Rival offers serious value.

GearDiary The Solo Rival Backpack:  There's a Place for Everything

When I pack for a plane trip, I try to carefully place each item in my bag so that I can remember where I put it and so that it’s easy to get to when I need it. The Solo Rival is perfect for me because there are literally dozens of pockets within the eight compartments. I was able to separate my charging cables from my headphones so that they could both be easily accessed when I boarded my flight. I was also able to pack my Nintendo Switch so that it was protected within the fully padded 17.3” laptop compartment.

GearDiary The Solo Rival Backpack:  There's a Place for Everything

Plus, the backpack’s storage was large enough to carry everything else I needed to take.  Like my toiletries, a change of clothes, a clipboard, and pad of paper, writing utensils, measuring tape, laser measure, camera, screwdriver, flashlight, business cards, and more.

GearDiary The Solo Rival Backpack:  There's a Place for Everything

Showing off the compartments:

Check out the full feature list on the Solo Rival Backpack:

  • Fully padded 17.3” laptop compartment
  • Internal iPad/ tablet pocket
  • hard-shell side zippered pockets protects most headphones
  • Built-in headphone port
  • Three full size compartments
  • Quick access pocket
  • Front zip-down organizer section
  • Padded shoulder straps with chest strap for added comfort
  • Cooling air mesh back padding
  • Reflective strip for increased visibility
  • Lightweight
  • Polyester body

Not only was I impressed that the Rival could hold all of my crap, but I was able to organize my crap exactly how I wanted to! With three full size compartments and five smaller compartments, there is no limit to the number of ways you can organize and reorganize your stuff.

Inside the front compartment, you’ve got three large pockets plus card slots and pen pockets. There’s also a headphone port within that pocket, so you can keep your phone or music player safe inside that pocket and run the headphones out. There are also two hard shell pockets on the sides of the backpack that are zippered, which can each hold a full-size pair of headphones and keep them safe.

Showing off the organization:

The next full size compartment is a large storage compartment, capable of holding a pair of shoes or a couple of neck pillows. The next compartment contains a fully padded pocket to house and secure your tablet or e-reader along with a larger pocket that can be used for standard storage. In between this pocket and the back pocket, there’s a quick-access pocket that can fit a wallet or large smartphone. Finally, the back storage compartment is enormous and was able to hold a change of clothes as well as my toiletry bag.

The back of the bag is padded and feels soft against your back while the padded shoulder straps never dig into your shoulders, no matter how heavy the bag gets. The shoulder straps also have a built-in chest strap, which allows for greater comfort while carrying heavier loads.  Although my wife thought the chest strap made me look dorky.

GearDiary The Solo Rival Backpack:  There's a Place for Everything

I am extremely impressed with the Solo Rival Backpack as its able to carry all of my stuff in an organized and safe fashion, while also providing quick access to my belongings. The bag is comfortable, although not incredibly stylish. If you’re looking for something with more style and slightly less functionality, maybe check out Solo’s Everyday Max Backpack.

You can purchase the Solo Rival Backpack directly from Solo at their website.

Source:  The Solo Rival Backpack was a manufacturer provided review sample.

What I Like:  A place for everything; Secure, padded pockets; Great organizational flexibility; Comfortable straps

What Needs Improvement:  Not incredibly stylish

 


About the Author

Perry Brauner
I'm an architect by trade, but the overarching theme of my life has always been trying to keep up with the newest, coolest technology. Ever since I picked up an NES controller, I've been hooked on the latest and greatest gadgets, gizmos, and toys. Whether it's gaming, mobile phones, and accessories, or PCs and Apple products, I'm interested. I use many Apple products in my daily life, such as the iPhone, iPad, and my MacBook Pro. I've also built a few PCs in my day, so I'd like to say that I'm a pretty well-rounded techie.