CB-01 vs. WL-25 - I have...
, October 31, 2013
CB-01 vs. WL-25 - I have both.
Summary (full review below):
WL-25 is less expensive, larger (good for several A4/US-size folders or
notebooks), and feels cheaper in quality. The straps are poorly designed and not
very ergonomic, especially considering that you'd presumably be carrying a
heavier load in this larger bag. There are fewer pockets and they do not feel as
useful as the CB-01's pockets. The main compartment can fit a laptop, but the
bottom of the bag is as thin as the rest of the bag, so you would NOT want to
bring a laptop without a protective cover/case.
CB-01 is smaller, more expensive, more ergonomic, the straps are much more
appropriately reinforced/designed. The pockets are far more practical (for me at
least) and there are more pockets overall. Smaller size means less
notebook/folder capacity (for standard US-size folders and notebooks, A4 I
WL-25 (larger, cheaper) is definitely of a poorer quality. The back and straps
are not as well padded or reinforced, the straps are not ergonomic at all
(compare the pictures), despite the contents likely being heavier - why else
would you buy the larger bag? Its compartments are also less functional than the
CB-01, at least for my purposes. There are also much fewer outside pockets on
this bag. There is one pocket in particular (the top one which has a vertical
zipper) which I find particularly cumbersome, as whenever you open it to get
something out, smaller items you may keep in that pocket will fall out. The
outside pockets also do not extend as far out from the bag.
CB-01 is smaller and better designed overall. The straps are better padded and
designed - the structure of the straps is such that the weight of the bag is
more evenly spread out on one's shoulders. There is this one great pocket pocket
on the back of the bag (flat pocket, with a zippered opening on the side to the
right if you're wearing it) that can easily be opened by reaching for it, but
can't be easily accessed unless you are specifically trying to go for it (harder
to steal, I think?) - you kind of have to arch your back in a specific way to
get to it. I use this pocket to hold a small flat wallet on a bungee cord for
RFID-based public transit or private-entry systems (the kind where you hold the
card up to the scanner without having to swipe anything), but it can really be
used for any small item that you'd want to keep somewhat concealed or would want
to be able to access without removing your bag.
The CB-01 is smaller, which means less space for large items such as A4/standard
US sized folders/notebooks/textbooks. I've managed to fit a few notebooks and
folders, but sometimes the top corners will bend due to the size/shape of the
bag. This bag is AWESOME for anything smaller (shorter) than US/A4 sized
notebooks/folders. The top-front pocket is actually amazing for planners or
smaller size notebooks (I have one that's about 6"x9"), and it will fit several
Conclusion: the CB-01 is awesome if you don't use a whole lot of standard US/A4
notebooks. The CB-25 is OK, but I wish I'd have gotten a similar bag by a
different brand instead.