Osprey Aoede Briefpack Review

The Osprey Aoede Briefpack’s simple harness system and rigid structure complement each other, delivering a refreshingly casual daypack from the brand.

Our Verdict

7.5 /10
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  • Multiple carry options offer flexibility
  • Rigid structure adds carry comfort despite simple backpack straps
  • The front pocket isn’t so deep that small gear gets lost


  • Crossbody strap’s padding is tricky to position for those with small frames
  • Lack of water bottle pockets means you’ll have to stash them inside
  • No designated storage area for crossbody strap when not in use

Technical Details

30 %

Carry-on Compliance

View 43/145 Airlines

81 %

Like the Look

Polled on Instagram

  • Capacity


  • Weight (lb)

    2.238 lb (1 kg)

  • Dimensions

    18.11 in x 12.8 in x 9.45 in (46 x 32.5 x 24 cm)

  • Notable Materials

    Ballistic Polyester, YKK Zippers, Duraflex Hardware, Recycled Materials, DWR Coating, Meets bluesign® Criteria

  • Laptop Compartment Size


  • Warranty Information

    All Mighty Guarantee

Buying Options

Osprey Logo
Backcountry Logo
Amazon Logo

Full Review

It’s always interesting whenever a brand tries to branch out and explore different styles. Case in point—Osprey’s Aoede Briefpack is distinctly more casual and everyday-friendly, with only hints of outdoorsy-ness where it makes sense.

Osprey Aoede Briefpack Cross
Osprey Aoede Briefpack | We’re digging the more casual approach.

Its dual carrying modes (backpack and messenger bag) pose a challenge when it comes to balance, as the two styles can butt heads in some cases. In the Aoede Briefpack’s case, main compartment access suffers a bit if you’re not careful with positioning the zipper. But if you’re the kind of traveler who’s careful with that—and if you’re interested—read on.

External Components

The Aoede lineup is refreshingly minimalist compared to other bags Osprey makes, and this holds especially true for the Aoede Briefpack. Whereas you’ll see backpacks like the Centauri or METRON with rounded shapes, strap-laden, and a generally active outdoorsy vibe, the Aoede Briefpack is squared-off and more casual. It’s a bit like Topo Designs or Fjallraven, minus the heritage styling. However, the materials are characteristically Osprey, with an 840-denier ballistic polyester fabric and YKK zippers throughout. The fabric is DWR-treated, recycled, and made without PFAS, if that concerns you.

Osprey Aoede Briefpack Brand
Osprey Aoede Briefpack | Just a simple patch for this bag’s branding.

Two major aspects show how different the Aoede Briefpack is from other Osprey packs. First is the bag’s very rectangular shape and fairly rigid structure, both meriting the “brief” in the name. They help keep the bag’s shape composed, whether fully packed, half empty, or devoid of gear. Secondly, padded handles are at the top and side of the bag, whereas other Osprey packs we’ve tested would’ve had compression straps. Having said all of that, it’s not that we disapprove of Osprey’s usual outdoor-centric designs. However, it’s always interesting for us to see brands branch out and try something different.

Osprey Aoede Briefpack Side Handle
Osprey Aoede Briefpack | The handles are padded for comfort.

Admittedly, the Aoede Briefpack is a bit sparse when it comes to external features, lacking even basic components like water bottle pockets or loop attachment points. Interestingly, even the shoulder straps are relatively barebones for an Osprey backpack. There’s no hip belt or no sternum strap, just decent padding to keep things comfortable. Additionally, the lower half of the back panel doubles as a luggage pass-through, allowing you to slot the Aoede Briefpack onto your rolling luggage if you’re traveling with one.

Osprey Aoede Briefpack Harness
Osprey Aoede Briefpack | The back panel is covered in mesh, and there’s flexible padding underneath.

The back panel itself, though seemingly plain, is covered in very breathable mesh with an underlying layer of flexible ribbed padding. It’s the sort of design we expect from a brand that knows how to make backpacks for outdoor use, and we’re glad they’re applying it to their more casual lineup.

Osprey Aoede Briefpack Padding
Osprey Aoede Briefpack | You can also carry the bag like a messenger bag.

Alternatively, you can untether the ends of the shoulder straps, stow them behind the back panel, and attach the included crossbody strap. There are two attachment loops where you can clip it, transforming the Briefpack into a messenger bag. The strap itself is length-adjustable, with a padded section you can move around.

Fit Notes

Osprey Aoede Briefpack Side By Side
Left: Eric Hergenreder, Height: 6’0″ (183 cm), Torso: 18.5” (47 cm) | Right: Lauren Maternowski, Height: 5’6” (168 cm), Torso: 16.5” (42 cm)

Unsurprisingly, we find backpack mode the best way to carry the Aoede Briefpack. Using two shoulder straps simply distributes the bag’s weight better than relying on a single crossbody strap. Remember that there are no sternum straps, load lifters, or hip belts, but backpack mode still delivers a comfortable carrying experience. We can chalk this up to the bag’s robust structure, which mitigates any potential sagginess that would otherwise necessitate those kinds of support straps. It does hang a bit low, especially for those with smaller frames, but that doesn’t have that big of an impact on comfort.

Osprey Aoede Briefpack Strap
Osprey Aoede Briefpack | The simple backpack straps are comfortable enough on their own.

The crossbody strap is a quicker alternative since you only have to throw one strap over yourself to carry the bag. However, those with smaller frames might struggle since the padding falls too far behind when you shorten the strap. We couldn’t find an ideal spot where the strap would fall on the shoulder while simultaneously having the bag not sit awkwardly behind us.

Inside The Daypack

If you don’t plan on using the crossbody strap, you can store it within the back panel pocket where the shoulder straps stow away. However, stuffing the strap there produces a noticeable bulge you can definitely feel when you’re carrying the bag in backpack mode. In other words, stow it in another compartment or leave it at home altogether.

Osprey Aoede Briefpack Pocket
Osprey Aoede Briefpack | You can store the crossbody strap here, though it creates a noticeable bulge.

The front pocket proves the most useful for us. It’s not so big that the small gear we store inside gets lost, but it’s also not so small that it gets crowded easily. It’s perfectly sized for storing a handful of items like a smartphone, wireless earbuds, lip balm, and a pack of gum, all while being easy to navigate. The interior is also lined with fuzzy fabric to prevent scratches on sensitive items like sunglasses.

Osprey Aoede Briefpack Sunglasses
Osprey Aoede Briefpack | This pocket is lined with soft fabric.

Next up is the front compartment, also called an admin panel, since it houses a lot of smaller pockets for organizing gear. In the Aoede Briefpack’s case, there’s a zippered pocket at the back where you can store small gear you want completely sealed up. In our case, it’s a pair of sunglasses we don’t need to access that often, so being far back here isn’t an issue. There’s also a mesh pocket with a short key leash, making it the go-to spot to store your keys. Mirrored to the right is a simple liner pocket wide enough for a passport.

Apart from the modest organization options, the front compartment is also fairly roomy and opens widely. The zipper track runs asymmetrically, with one side going lower than the other, making it convenient whenever we need to store something bulky, like a rolled-up baselayer or a buff we don’t feel like folding neatly. Since Osprey built enough of a gusset, there’s enough expansion to prevent the front’s shape from getting distorted.

Osprey Aoede Briefpack Admin
Osprey Aoede Briefpack | Most of the bag’s organization is here.

At the back is a dedicated laptop compartment. It’s rated for up to a 16-inch device like a large MacBook Pro. That said, if you are rocking a smaller MacBook Air, for example, you can get away with simply using the tablet sleeve inside, which is suspended from the compartment’s floor, incidentally providing shock protection. The laptop compartment itself only has about an inch of space between its floor and the bag’s bottom edge, so there’s only a minimal amount of shock protection if you’re putting a 16-inch device inside.

Osprey Aoede Briefpack Empty
Osprey Aoede Briefpack | It’s just a pure bucket space.

The main compartment opens up clamshell-style. It’s not unheard of for a daypack to have this kind of an opening, though it is more suited for travel backpacks since those tend to hold bulky clothing and gear. On the other hand, the Aoede Briefpack’s backpack and messenger mode more or less necessitate an opening like this, so you have convenient main compartment access in either carrying mode. Just keep in mind that, depending on which of those modes you’re using, you’ll want to position the zippers where they’ll be convenient to reach. So, for example, when using backpack mode, we put the zippers at the top.

Osprey Aoede Briefpack Packing Cubes
Osprey Aoede Briefpack | We can fit three days’ worth of clothing inside.

The clamshell-style opening and rigid sidewalls make it easy to pack, whether we’re stuffing large packing cubes or smaller pouches filled with small gear. In terms of capacity, we are able to pack three days’ worth of clothing inside, though your mileage may vary. The lack of external water bottle pockets might tempt you to store one here, but you’ll want to remember to put the zippers within easy reach, as mentioned above. Otherwise, reaching for your bottle will be very inconvenient each time.

Usage Timeline

Initial Usage

Condition: Excellent

  • Pretty stiff back panel, so we’re interested to see if it translates to a comfortable back panel
  • Light interior liner is nice for added visibility
  • Seems like a great “office to airport” bag
2 Weeks of Use

Condition: Excellent

  • Surprisingly comfortable to carry in each mode, though the padding on the messenger strap is hard to align
  • Super easy to access gear because of the clamshell opening
  • Materials are still holding up well and still look professional
By Lauren Maternowski
Created July 11, 2024 • Updated July 11, 2024
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