The good thing about Osprey’s backpacks is that they always make them in a variety of sizes. This allows you to choose the one that is perfectly suited for your needs. Naturally, if you don’t often carry a lot of things on hiking trips, then you don’t really need a huge backpack. And Osprey Talon is just like that; it comes in multiple different sizes, but today we will focus on the ones that have a capacity of 33 and 22 liters.
Why? Well, Osprey doesn’t just make an identical backpack in 4-5 different sizes. In fact, more often than not, different sizes will mean different features and equipment. And that is also the case with these two Talon backpacks. Which is also obvious from their very photos.
So, if you are trying to decide between the Talon 33 and 22, you’ve come to the right place. I will tell you all of the common features of these two Osprey backpacks. But more importantly, I will tell you exactly which features are unique to each backpack. So scroll down and enjoy this detailed comparison of these two Talon backpacks!
So, first we’ll take a look at these two backpacks and some of their basic specifications.
Obviously, the Talon 33 is the larger of the two. But, when you actually look at these two packs side by side, they honestly don’t look like they come form the same range. And that is precisely why we will check out in detail which features they share, and which they don’t. So, let’s begin.
Obviously, since these two backpacks belong in the same range, they will have a lot of shared features. Color variety and purpose are the most basic things that they share; both of these are men’s hiking backpacks (women’s versions are also available – Osprey Tempest).
You can have a quick look at the shared features of the backpacks in the video below (and how to utilize them), and then we’ll talk about them in a little more detail.
The good news is that whichever backpack you choose, you can expect the same level of comfort. Both Talons have the same back panel, which is padded with foam and feels very soft on your back. Additionally, there is a section just behind the panel that can help you adjust its length, and ensure yourself a perfect fit.
The AirScape back panel is also made of mesh, and it is ventilated. And that is very important, especially since summer is just around the corner. Both Talon backpacks will keep your back cool and dry even in the scorching heat of July.
Almost all hiking backpacks that you encounter are compatible with hydration reservoirs. And while that is a good thing, it’s not so good that the reservoir sleeve is often inside the main compartment of the backpack because that immediately reduces its internal capacity.
But, that is not the case with the Talon backpacks, because they have an external hydration sleeve. The reservoir goes in the same compartment where the extension of the shoulder straps is, which utilizes all storage space perfectly. And you can see that in the photo below.
I’m not sure if you’re aware, but I’m a huge fan of pockets. So, I was very pleasantly surprised to see that both of these Ospreys have zippered pockets on the hipbelt, as well a stretch pocket on one of the shoulder straps. And I guarantee you that you will use them a lot.
You can use them to store all the small things you will need sometime during the hike – a granola bar, cash, sunglasses etc. And they are located very conveniently, so that you don’t ever have to stop and take off your backpack.
If you’re a newbie to backpacks or hiking gear, maybe you don’t know what’s a sternum strap. Well, it’s that little buckle that allows you to connect both shoulder straps, so that they always stay put. It is a convenient little thing, and when combined with a hipbelt, it helps distribute the load of your backpack evenly across your torso.
On both Talon backpacks, the buckle on the strap also doubles as an emergency whistle. So, if you are ever in a desperate situation that requires you to draw attention to yourself, your backpack will literally have your back. And another thing; Osprey has hydraulics hose magnet kits. You attach one magnet to the sternum strap and another one to the hose of your reservoir, and you get totally hands-free hydration. But sadly, you would have to purchase them separately.
LED lights and trekking poles are indispensible parts of equipment for hardcore hikers and trekkers. And Osprey knows that. That is why they included these attachment points on both Talon backpacks. Stow-on-the-Go is actually the name of the trekking pole attachment point, and you can see how to use it in the photo on the right.
There is an easily accessible front pocket on both of these Talons. It’s not zippered, but it has buckle closure, and it’s great for quickly putting away a spare layer of clothing.
There are some features that are unique to each backpack, and we’ll get to them in a minute. First, I would like to talk about their versatility. Both of them are highly versatile, even though they are primarily intended for hiking.
The Talon 22 is obviously the smaller backpack, and as such it is more convenient for some more exhausting outdoor activities. Biking and mountaineering come to mind first, as most backpacks that are made specifically for those activities are usually small. That it is because it would be a bit difficult to operate a mountain bike with a humongous backpack on your shoulders.
On the other hand, the larger capacity of the Talon 33, as well its different opening style makes it also a good choice for camping or even some shorter backpacking trips. So, be sure to carefully consider what activities you engage in the most, before deciding on one of these backpacks.
A couple of features are unique to the smaller Talon, so that you have an even harder time choosing just one of these Ospreys. The Talon 22 backpack features LidLock bike helmet attachment point, on its very front. And this feature is precisely why the 22 can easily double as a biking backpack.
This backpack also has an additional storage compartment that the larger Talon lacks. That compartment has a panel with several pockets that will allow you to neatly organize your equipment. So, even though it is the smaller and cheaper of the two, it has a few design features that some of you will find very useful.
And one more thing, the Talon 22 also has a single ice axe loop, while the 33 has twin loops. So, it’s not really a feature unique to either backpack, but it’s still worth mentioning.
The most obvious difference between these two Osprey backpacks is their design. The smaller one features typical zipper opening of the main compartment, but the larger one doesn’t. In fact, the Talon 33 has flip closure with compression straps.
This basically means that you have a lid that goes over the main compartment. And there is a pocket on that lid, which is actually very convenient. Some people prefer this opening style of a backpack, while others prefer zippers. So, this one is completely up to you and your personal preference.
And, as I already mentioned, the Talon 33 is equipped with double ice axe loops.
I don’t want to sound like a broken record, but you really should choose based on your own hobbies. Both backpacks are of high quality and they are very versatile, and you can’t really go wrong with either one.
The Talon 22 is the better choice for all of you enjoy biking, aside from hiking. The helmet attachment point and the smaller capacity make this backpack a better option for such sporty activities. And you won’t be giving up much – basically you will be giving up one ice axe loops, which really isn’t a big deal.
On the other hand, the Talon 33 is the larger backpack, and as such, it allows you to carry more items with you. So, I would say that it is the better choice for you if you like to go on longer hiking trips, or even overnight ones. It’s also a good backpack for camping, since you will have that extra space. You won’t have a zippered panel on the front, but you will get an additional pocket on the lid of the backpack.
So, whether you prefer the 22 or the 33, head over to Amazon. Both backpacks are currently on sale, and I would advise you to choose quickly (you do have all the information now) if you want to save a few bucks.
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!