They are both convertible carry on bags, that are great for weekend trips or just as hand luggage.
Although they are quite similar, there are some fundamental differences. This is actually great news, because it helps us make a choice!
I know which one I love, but it's not about me - it's about what is best for your travels.
Do you need more space?
Do you have more electronics?
Or do you prefer a more sturdy backpack?
All these questions will become clear!
The Osprey Backpack/Duffel Bag in the 46L size is a very handy travel bag, especially for those wanting to take lots of electronics and fit in a lot of gear.
The inner storage area is very very deep/wide and can handle a lot.
It will definitely be a great choice for weekend trips or people just wanting to have a lot of stuff with them (jacket, shoes, toiletry and more! Yes, it's big).
And it comes with compression straps on the front to help keep the size down for carry-on. Something we all love (not having to check in your bags!).
Or, if you aren't carrying much (or storing it) you can compress it way down and make it a lot smaller.
Colors: Grey/Black, Red, Green
Weight: 3.3lb (1.5kg)
Size: 27 x 14 x 7 inches
(cm) 58 (l) x 40 (w) x 31 (d)
The Osprey Porter comes with a lot of handles (top, side, bottom), maybe too many. But they do come in handy once in a while, especially when you are not using this as a backpack.
Waist straps are stored in the bottom so can be tucked away for flights, and used again once you land (if you check the luggage in).
Just keep in mind that the waist bands are not super-padded so it's great for travel, but might not do the job if you intend on doing long day hikes or carrying heavy loads. But for most travelers, it will more than do the job.
The main electronics storage area is on the front, which is great when you have to get all your gear out for security checks at the airport. It's very spacious, fitting a reasonably large laptop (like a 13" Mac) as well as having a nice pocket behind for other gear (kindle, ipad etc).
And on the front there is space for a phone, diary, mouse, cables, chargers etc. All in all, well thought out.
The only downside I see here is that it is on the front so not as well protected as an inner/back pocket I have had on other packs.
Overall this is a very sturdy, well padded backpack that will last you a long time. It's great for travellers who like being able to carry a lot, not bother with a second (checked) bag and have lots of electronics.
This is a smaller version, the Osprey Porter 30 which some people are going to love because it is easier to fit in smaller planes as carry-on and easier to carry around town when you are out and about (at home or traveling).
Of course, this means you can carry less, but having no issue on a plane with carry on could be worth it.
Then again, maybe carrying less is also not a bad thing right? Who wants to be a packhorse!
Both bags fit a 15 inch laptop.
Price-wise, it is often about a $20 difference between the two.
Colors: Grey/Black, Red, Green
Weight: 2.3 pounds
Size: 8 x 20 x 13 inches
The Osprey Farpoint 40 is a great travel backpack for use as a carry on.
Again, it is a convertible backpack, carry on where the straps can be zipped away in the back. Great for travel!
Osprey quality is always there with nice material, handles, zippers and mesh. Something that I love to see in a pack that I am investing in.
The longer the last the better.
There is also a handy shoulder carry strap included, which you can attach (or leave at home) if you want more options to carry it.
On the front there are compression straps which always come in handy to reduce space.
And there is the same front pocket for electronics storange. The difference in this model is there is less little pockets for your phone etc. But the main pocket is quite large and can easily fit a 15" laptop. There is also a second pocket for a kindle or tablet. And, the zippers are lockable (but you need to bring your own :>)
Colors: Grey/Black, Red, Blue
Weight: 3.2lb (1.44kg)
Size: 14 x 21 x 15 inches
(cm) 54 (l) x 35 (w) x 37 (d)
Unlike the Porter above, the Farpoint is more of a backpack which you can see with the straps. They are also tuck away (so great for storage, check-in or just putting in the overhead).
But the beauty of them is that they are super padded, well made, supported with a sturdy Aluminium frame, so great for carry loads for longer periods.
Inside is not as large as the porter, but then again this is a smaller pack (40L vs 46L). However, there are some cool internal compression straps you can use to get more out of the space you have.
If you are more of a backpack person, and love the support of a good quality frame and straps, this is a far better option. However, with less space for "stuff" both inside and in the front pockets the trade off is there.
In the end, it all depends on how you travel. And how you store stuff.
I like to use a solid backpack with straps that are comfortable on my back and I can carry for a long time (and double as a day hike pack). So for me it is the Farpoint. It also has more than enough space, straps, pockets, and room for both a large laptop and kindle/tablet.
But, if you need more organizational space (pockets for your phone, diary, cables, internal pockets) then the Porter is far better. It also has more space which is a good thing as you can bring more (or a bad thing - as you have to carry it, with less friendly straps). So this bag is more for the person who does not haul your gear around much (ie. you just need to carry it at the airport, taxi, etc).
I honestly don't think you can go wrong with either of them, but have a good look at the videos and point in the pros and cons, and then see what fits your travel style!
Roger is a little obsessed with travel. He has been to over 40 countries, broken 3 suitcases and owned over 10 backpacks in 12 months. What he doesn't know about travel, ain't worth knowing!