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  1. #1
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    Vaude Hyper Air 14+3 / Anti-Sweat pack review

    Ok, it is pretty much a given that with the heat here, wearing a hydration pack is gonna make your back sweat. My back sweats like crazy even on a cool day! I am a bit of a bag-hag, as I am always trying new packs, and searching for one that rides well, and is not so darn hot.

    I tried the Deuter Race Air, but the waist straps are a wimpy afterthought, and it felt like a couple tennis balls were under the pack pressing into my kidneys. Dry, yes. Comfy, No.

    I tried the NV Hawg, and it is a nice pack, but so-so for ventilation. Lots of nice features though, but still a sweat maker.

    Osprey Raptor 14 is a great pack in almost all ways. Stable, easy insertion of hydration pack, lots of dividers, great pad and helmet carriers. But it is sweaty. Almost perfect, but why did they not do a back panel like the Manta? So close!

    I tried the Ergon BD-2, and if you set it up right you could keep it off your back, but it felt like you had a bowling ball on the end of a stick back behind you. Really felt like the weight was too far out, swinging around back behind you, or as one guy said,"Like you are carrying a drunken Hobbit on your back."
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    So now I am riding with the Vaude Hyper Air 14+3. It has a mesh back panel that is spring loaded keeps a nice air space between the pack and your back, and a nice waist harness that is quite comfortable. Construction is really good. It rides really nice, and so far, my back is staying just as dry as the front of my jersey, which is really nice. Of the packs I have ridden that help keep your back dry, this is the most comfortable, and rides the best, while being tops in dryness.

    It has a rain cover tucked into a zipper on the bottom, and also a helmet carrier. I found that the helmet carrier will also work well to strap on a set of knee pads. The side pockets are stretchy and large and there is plenty of room for tools, pumps, jackets etc. The pack easily expands for more capacity.

    Also, the main straps are attached at the bottom by a big velcro patch, and you can easily adjust the straps so they come over your shoulders with the right length, and sit where they should no matter your torso length.

    Downsides are as follows:
    The hydration pocket is uninsulated.
    There is no nice little pocket for a cell phone.
    Not really any dividers in the main pocket.

    Right now though, the way it rides, fits, and keeps my back cool out weighs the little niggles. If they added a cell pocket, a couple pockets at the waist and a little more organization inside, it would be darn near perfect. The back panel is a winner for me.

    Ventilated back panel and nice waist straps.


    Pack unexpanded and expanded.


    Lower tool pocket

    Inner hydration pocket, and main storage area.

    Pack has a low center of gravity, and rides well.

    Here you can see how the pack maintains air-space on the back.

  2. #2
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    Is this the one that has been on Chainlove quite a bit?

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by wog131
    Is this the one that has been on Chainlove quite a bit?
    I think they had it on there for around $60.

    I have also seen them have the Splash air pack, which is a 20 liter pack.

    I found mine on E-bay new in the bag for $50.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by twowheelsdown2002

    Osprey Raptor 14 is a great pack in almost all ways. Stable, easy insertion of hydration pack, lots of dividers, great pad and helmet carriers. But it is sweaty. Almost perfect, but why did they not do a back panel like the Manta? So close!
    Additions to the cycling line with an Airspeed suspension like that found on the Manta are in the works for the 2012 lineup.

  5. #5
    Dirt Merchant
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    nice moobs
    Keep pedalin'. You can catch your breath on the downhill!

    '10 Stumpjumper Comp FSR
    '06 Rockhopper Comp

  6. #6
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    Nice review!

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by tplace
    nice moobs
    Suck my what? Here's the bladder you should use in it.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by jeffbfox
    Additions to the cycling line with an Airspeed suspension like that found on the Manta are in the works for the 2012 lineup.
    Do you market for Osprey?

    If so, the other change to be made is to the waist pockets. You can only put what you want to lose in them. I put my asthma inhaler in mine, and it bounced down the trail. Fortunately my girlfriend was riding behind and spotted it.

    The Raptor needs zippered waist pockets just like the Manta has.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by twowheelsdown2002
    Do you market for Osprey?

    If so, the other change to be made is to the waist pockets. You can only put what you want to lose in them. I put my asthma inhaler in mine, and it bounced down the trail. Fortunately my girlfriend was riding behind and spotted it.

    The Raptor needs zippered waist pockets just like the Manta has.
    Thanks for the feedback. Will add this to the list of things to review for changes.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by jeffbfox
    Thanks for the feedback. Will add this to the list of things to review for changes.
    While you're at it fix the back panel so it works properly.

    I got the Osprey Manta 25 for TWO specific reasons.

    1. Waist pockets.
    2. Back panel that keeps the pack off your back.

    The waist pockets are great. Would be nice if they were padded but it's a "hiking" pack and not an MTB pack so I understand that they are meant to hold stuff and not necessarily protect stuff from a fall. I put some of the little dividers from a camera backpack in the pockets and it works out fine. Never had a pocket open and have something lost on the trail.

    The back panel is great IN THEORY putting plenty of space between the pack and your body. One would think that this extra airflow would greatly reduce the sweaty back syndrome. However, I'm sure no one has realized this because the problem, which I find difficult to believe no one at Osprey noticed, is that when you stuff a full reservoir in the pack all that extra space is now filled with the reservoir.

    Empty reservoir. Notice the clearly visible space between the mesh back panel and the reservoir pocket:


    Full reservoir. The space between the mesh back panel and the reservoir pocket is now gone:


    Needless to say I was extremely disappointed in the Manta for this very obvious design flaw. I kept it for two reasons.

    1. It had the best feature set of any pack I was looking at.
    2. Even though the back panel did not work as advertised it still operated as your typical, sweaty back syndrome backpack, but with a better set of features.

    It had the best features of any I looked at so I had so I figured I had a better pack in all ways minus the misleading advertisement of the of the back panel.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by big0mike
    While you're at it fix the back panel so it works properly.

    I got the Osprey Manta 25 for TWO specific reasons.

    1. Waist pockets.
    2. Back panel that keeps the pack off your back.

    The waist pockets are great. Would be nice if they were padded but it's a "hiking" pack and not an MTB pack so I understand that they are meant to hold stuff and not necessarily protect stuff from a fall. I put some of the little dividers from a camera backpack in the pockets and it works out fine. Never had a pocket open and have something lost on the trail.

    The back panel is great IN THEORY putting plenty of space between the pack and your body. One would think that this extra airflow would greatly reduce the sweaty back syndrome. However, I'm sure no one has realized this because the problem, which I find difficult to believe no one at Osprey noticed, is that when you stuff a full reservoir in the pack all that extra space is now filled with the reservoir.



    Needless to say I was extremely disappointed in the Manta for this very obvious design flaw. I kept it for two reasons.

    1. It had the best feature set of any pack I was looking at.
    2. Even though the back panel did not work as advertised it still operated as your typical, sweaty back syndrome backpack, but with a better set of features.

    It had the best features of any I looked at so I had so I figured I had a better pack in all ways minus the misleading advertisement of the of the back panel.
    Sorry to hear that you were disappointed with the backpanel on your Manta pack. I think you may be underestimating the benefits provided by the Airspeed suspension. It is not necessarily supposed to keep the pack 100% off of your back but does greatly reduce the amount of load and contact from your back. The Airspeed mesh acts somewhat like a "bellow" and keeps air flowing through the mesh as you are moving while riding. I do most of my long (50+ mile) mountain bike rides with a Manta 25 and have noticed a significant benefit in comfort and reduced sweat. If you are riding hard, you are going to realize some sweat wearing any pack.

    I don't see where there is any misleading advertising regarding the back panel. Please forward anything that you feel is misleading so that we can review and change if necessary.

    Thanks
    Jeff Fox
    Osprey Packs

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by big0mike
    While you're at it fix the back panel so it works properly.

    I got the Osprey Manta 25 for TWO specific reasons.

    1. Waist pockets.
    2. Back panel that keeps the pack off your back.

    The waist pockets are great. Would be nice if they were padded but it's a "hiking" pack and not an MTB pack so I understand that they are meant to hold stuff and not necessarily protect stuff from a fall. I put some of the little dividers from a camera backpack in the pockets and it works out fine. Never had a pocket open and have something lost on the trail.

    The back panel is great IN THEORY putting plenty of space between the pack and your body. One would think that this extra airflow would greatly reduce the sweaty back syndrome. However, I'm sure no one has realized this because the problem, which I find difficult to believe no one at Osprey noticed, is that when you stuff a full reservoir in the pack all that extra space is now filled with the reservoir.

    Empty reservoir. Notice the clearly visible space between the mesh back panel and the reservoir pocket:


    Full reservoir. The space between the mesh back panel and the reservoir pocket is now gone:


    Needless to say I was extremely disappointed in the Manta for this very obvious design flaw. I kept it for two reasons.

    1. It had the best feature set of any pack I was looking at.
    2. Even though the back panel did not work as advertised it still operated as your typical, sweaty back syndrome backpack, but with a better set of features.

    It had the best features of any I looked at so I had so I figured I had a better pack in all ways minus the misleading advertisement of the of the back panel.
    That is interesting. I almost bought a Manta after buying my Raptor 14 just because it looked to have a more effective back panel, and much better waist pockets, even though I don't need or want an even bigger pack.

    The Vaude Hyper Air back panel does work well, and does maintain it's airspace even when leaning forward with a full bladder in the pack. Even though it does not have a hard backed bladder like the Raptor, the pack itself has a rigid structure that does not let the bladder intrude into the back panel air space.

    If I was redesigning the Vaude I would add some nice waist pockets, a few more organizing dividers, and some straps on the outside for strapping on pads, instead of the helmet carrier device. Then the pack would be near perfect for me.

  13. #13
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    [QUOTE=twowheelsdown2002
    I tried the Deuter Race Air, but the waist straps are a wimpy afterthought, and it felt like a couple tennis balls were under the pack pressing into my kidneys. Dry, yes. Comfy, No.

    Nice review.

    There must be something 'not right' with either the fit or the straps of your Deuter. For me it's the most comfortable pack I've ever used and have turned three of my riding buddies on to it as well. I now use it for skiing and hiking as well. We all have the Deuter as our 'most comfortable' pack.

    Glad you found something that works for you as we are not all built the same.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by jeffbfox
    Sorry to hear that you were disappointed with the backpanel on your Manta pack. I think you may be underestimating the benefits provided by the Airspeed suspension. It is not necessarily supposed to keep the pack 100% off of your back but does greatly reduce the amount of load and contact from your back. The Airspeed mesh acts somewhat like a "bellow" and keeps air flowing through the mesh as you are moving while riding. I do most of my long (50+ mile) mountain bike rides with a Manta 25 and have noticed a significant benefit in comfort and reduced sweat. If you are riding hard, you are going to realize some sweat wearing any pack.

    I don't see where there is any misleading advertising regarding the back panel. Please forward anything that you feel is misleading so that we can review and change if necessary.

    Thanks
    Jeff Fox
    Osprey Packs
    To be fair it's perfectly possible that I misunderstood the true purpose of the back panel. I've seen several models from other manufacturers with a similar feature and the idea is to create airflow.

    From your website:

    "* Tensioned breathable mesh fabric provides superb airflow through back contact zone."
    http://www.ospreypacks.com/Suspensions/#AirSpeed

    So, that verifies that airflow is at least partially the purpose of the mesh back panel. Unfortunately, in that regard it completely fails.

    But, on the other hand, it's conceivable that the design does keep the LOAD off your back even though it doesn't keep the pack away from it. You can have something on your back without the contact point actually being a load bearing point.

    In any case I've not noticed any difference in how much sweat accumulates on my back while riding. And, one of the reasons I kept it was because this is essentially the norm. I'd rather have a sweaty back with a very nice pack than a cooler back with a sucky pack. YMMV...

  15. #15
    bland
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    Quote Originally Posted by tplace
    nice moobs
    Its easy for me to create an opinion about someone when they make comments like this.

  16. #16
    Meatbomb
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    Chainlove right now ....48.00



    http://www.chainlove.com/

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