Tablets and smartphones are making being able to work on the move easier but, if you’re anything like me, when you’re going anywhere for a length of time you still find yourself packing a laptop as well as your tablet and phone – especially if travelling for work. This means that there’s still a market for nifty bags that will take all your gadgety stuff whilst still looking good. I have been walking around with the STM Trust messenger bag for a few weeks and here’s what I think.
At first glance you may think the Australian-made STM Trust is just your standard messenger-style laptop bag. Yes, it has a single shoulder strap and a large front flap but this all conceals some really nice design touches which could, quite possibly, separate the bag from the rest of the crowd.
STM Trust design
There’s no mistaking it, the STM Trust is a simple looking messenger bag and, depending on which version you opt for, will happily accommodate either a 13- or 15-inch laptop.
True, there may be fancier and flashier laptop bags out there (although I think the camo one looks really striking in a very urban cool way) but, to me at least, they tend to scream “I have a MacBook Pro in here come and get me” more than they really should.
The version I have is the professional looking graphite in the 15 – classed as their Medium bag. This comfortably takes my Lenovo Yoga 2 Pro, NVIDIA Shield tablet, a host of cables, my DSLR and the bag still has plenty of pockets for my portable DAC/Amp, flash drives and much more.
There’s a host of chunky YKK zippers that feature aluminium pulls to keep things safe. The shoulder strap is a quick cam-adjust number which allows for both cross body and shoulder carries.
All of this is wrapped up in water resistant 320D brushed poly fabric for most of the bag with 640D reinforced fabric for the bottom. The Trust is available in camouflage (pictured in conclusion section below), red, navy, olive as well as the aforementioned graphite.
STM Trust storage
On the back is a handle should you want to go hand-held and there’s a loop to slip the STM Trust over the handle of some rolling luggage too, for your jet-setter types.
Flip the flap back and then things start getting silly.
This larger zipped pocket contains a zipped mesh section, a main compartment and then a number of stitched holders for pens, calculators, cigars, tricorders, USB sticks, portable DAC/amps, and whatever else tickles your fancy.
Now, for the average person, that would already be more than enough but we have yet to delve in to the main compartment yet – what is it about Antipodeans, pockets and pouches?
Here you’ll find another loose document pocket, a padded and lined tablet compartment, space for a field notebook or another phone and then a large storage area – although I am starting to wonder how much stuff other people must cart around.
Obviously carrying all that equipment around is going to work you up a thirst so at either end of the STM Trust are bottle pockets which have compression straps to secure your choice of beverage.
STM Trust performance
The Trust is an extremely practical bag. Tablets, phones, laptops and other gadgety trinkets are safely stored away and it has space for a couple of drinks containers. In fact, I even used this as an overnight bag as there was room for a change of clothes and toiletry bag as well as my laptop, et al.
Even though it is tempting to fill this bag-of-many-pockets up you have to remember that all that weight is going on one shoulder, whether you go across body or not. If you are planning to fill it to the max then I would recommend that this is done when you have some rolling luggage to sit it on as well.
Saying that though, the shoulder pad does spread the load and, even with the bag reasonably packed, is comfortable to walk around with for quite a while.
The handle has come in more handy (arf!) than I thought it would and is definitely a good addition which you don’t see on many other messenger bags.
The STM Trust has held up well with my hectic schedule and myriad tube journeys. I have noticed a few small scratches starting to appear on the flap’s catches but everything else still looks pretty much as new.
Having the laptop section accessed by its own zipped entrance has proved very useful, especially when working on the train. Being able to get straight to the laptop instead of having to go past flap, zip and pocket makes more of a difference than you’d think. Also, being able to drop the laptop back in when you’ve been so engrossed in what you were doing that you’ve almost missed getting off at your stop could be a Godsend 😉
STM Trust laptop bag review conclusion
The Trust laptop messenger bag from STM has obviously been well thought out and designed with a purpose.
If you find that there are not enough pockets or storage space in this messenger bag then I want to know what the heck you are planning on using it for – an Ark maybe?
I like that the laptop and tablet sections have the soft lining, I like the chunky zips and I like all of the organiser pockets. The size is perfect with the 15 not feeling too cumbersome, even in rush hour.
My only concern is that people might be tempted to fill it up and do themselves a mischief.
All-in-all the STM Trust is an excellent, smart, well-put together and well-thought out laptop bag.
STM Trust prices and availability
You can get the STM Trust laptop messenger bag now in 13-inch laptop or 15-inch laptop versions – I’ve only been able to find the 13-inch version on Amazon.co.uk, where it is going for £72.44.
Check out the video below: