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Booq Viper Rush M Review

10 Nov 2010

I purchased a Booq Viper Rush M laptop bag for my Macbook Pro 15”. It retails for $129.95. You can find it for a little less online. I didn’t want to wait for it to get here, so I purchased it from our local Apple Reseller, Graphicom. I was looking for a hard case to protect my Mac from the bumps and dings of traveling to and from work and Starbucks (yeah, I’m the tool in Starbucks with a Mac).

Exterior

The bag has an industrial look. It is black with 3 raised ridges on the exterior. It is covered in a slick woven material (Is this Kevlar?). It comes with a soft handle and a shoulder strap. The shoulder strap is really nice. It looks and feels like its made from a nylon seat belt harness. The belt attaches with 2 solid metal clips that snap on and off easily. The strap has a thick shoulder pad. Overall the bag feels very sturdy and durable.

The Bag

It’s a cool looking bag. I feel like an spy or FBI agent walking around with it. I almost feel like I have to dress-up to hold the bag - Its that nice. Booq calls this a bag, but its so think and sturdy I’d call it a case.

Interior

The interior is black with gray neoprene pockets, orange stitching, and a large orange pocket in the back. There are 4 small pockets - perfect for a cell phone, ipod, or small cords. There is one zipper pocket that you might use for storing a thin magazine. There are two large pockets in the back. I can store my Mac extension cord and charger with room to spare. The mac itself sits in the bottom of the bag. It is secured in place by a divider and velcro strap.

This is a “work-in” bag - as in - you can work while your Mac is in the bag. It has two straps on the side of the bag that allow it to open to about 120 degrees (so says the Booq site). I’d agree with this. I can easily open my Mac and work-in the bag. I’d suggest this for only short intervals. The bag edge and the mac keyboard are not flush. You Mac sits inside the bag. You end up using a thin ridge to support your wrists. It is a little uncomfortable.

Opened

Another thing I don’t like about working in the bag. You cannot plug-in any accessories. The Mac’s side edge sits right up againts the bag interior wall. There is not any room for a usb or audio plug. I can jam a power cable in there, but I wouldn’t recommend it. I feel like I’m doing something bad at that point.

I didn’t buy the bag for the work-in feature, but I must admit I really do like it. To me, its a bonus feature. Even though I wouldn’t use it for more than 30 minutes - its perfect for short emails or just browsing the web while drinking coffee. I really wish I could plug in my audio jack. I watch many online presentations on Sharepoint and they are all audio.

I contacted Booq about the plug issue. They don’t have any accessory or solution. Its a minor thing for me since I wanted the bag for protection. If you want to really use this as a work-in bag, you might want to look elsewhere.

The bag also comes with a TerraLinq badge. You can get online and register the bag id. If someone finds it, they can look your id up and return it too you. But really… who’s going to return a found macbook pro? Not sure how useful this feature would be, but its a nice thought.

Side View

Recommendation

The price threw me off a little - $129.00 was more than I’ve paid for many of my gadgets. At first it felt expensive, but once I started doing some comparison shopping, it is competitive. You’re not going to get anything this nice for less.

If you are looking for a solid and sturdy bag - if you want a quality bag that looks professional with an industrial look - look no further. You should definitely buy this.

If you are looking for a bag to work-in, then you might not like this. Do you need to plug in when working? The bag is rated for 13” and 15” macs. You might be able to plug in with a 13” but I can’t verify this.