Back to the office?  This laptop briefcase bag is premium yet practical

Back to the office? This laptop briefcase bag is premium yet practical

Somewhere between a laptop case and a messenger bag, Harber calls it a laptop briefcase.

Image: Mary Branscombe

If you go back to the office a few days a week, you might be looking for a new laptop bag that’s not the usual backpack: something with lots of compartments for all the cables, chargers, external batteries and pens you want. to carry between your home office and your occasional work desk.

Or if you’re back to do the full ride, you might want to make it more bearable with something more efficient.

If you want to splurge on something high-end, roomy but also practical, Harber London’s Everyday Leather Briefcase is all that – but you’ll be paying premium, Apple-level prices at £349 for the style that takes a 15″ or 16″ laptop. (There is a smaller bag designed for 13″ and 14″ laptops, but it’s the same price.)

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What you’re paying for here are materials and quality, and you also get a practical design. The leather is both soft and sturdy and while it will likely wear down a bit over time, it will still look great and give you many years of travel. It can easily outlast many laptops.

It’s also surprisingly spacious for something so thin and compact: we were able to fit a 15-inch Surface Book 3, Surface Laptop Studio and Surface Pro X at the same time, so a laptop and an iPad will fit easily.

Three laptops seen in the Harber briefcase

Surface Book 3, Surface Laptop Studio and Surface Pro X fit neatly into the padded pockets.

Image: Mary Branscombe

The interior has several pockets in sturdy cotton twill. Haber added more padding and changed the style of the internal compartments from previous models, leaving more room for your laptops and making them more protected. To one side there are two deep pockets, both padded, which can hold a laptop and an iPad side by side, with a leather snap strap to hold them in place so you can reach both pockets in stretch netting that are quite large. for your charger, power cable or any other item you don’t want to lose at the bottom.

inside pockets

There are additional pockets on the side of the two laptop pockets: both of these are expandable to hold messy items like chargers and power cables.

Image: Mary Branscombe

On the other side is another deep pocket, also with padding, and this one has a magnet to keep it closed. Step down and there are three flat pockets (small, medium and large) with a wide leather strap sewn to the outside and attached at varying intervals so you can neatly store pens, cables and other small accessories.

a Surface Pen and USBC cable in storage pockets

Keep cables and pens organized or tuck them away in pockets.

Image: Mary Branscombe

There’s also a key fob with a metal clip and a leather key fob that rotates if you just want to pull it at a more convenient angle to unclip your keys, or a magnet that lets you detach it and then snap it back on. put back in place. It’s safe; it won’t come off by accident. But you have to rotate it to remove it and it’s tedious until you solve it.

If you’re also back to long-distance travel, the briefcase has an extra strap on the back that allows you to slip it over the handle of a suitcase or carry-on. If you’ve never had a bag that does this before, it makes a huge difference when juggling bags through the airport.

Both handles are sturdy and large enough to slide over your elbow, but probably not over your shoulder

The shoulder strap is more disappointing; it’s a sturdy woven fabric but rather narrow and too long for anyone who isn’t extremely tall or doesn’t have particularly broad shoulders and the loop is the wrong way around so you can tuck the excess in the shoulder pad so that it hangs over the zipper. The shoulder pad itself isn’t actually padded, just two layers of leather. And while the metal hooks at the end of the strap are extremely sturdy, the unobtrusive leather loops they slip through align with the handles rather than the corners of the case, giving it good balance but means the long strap is even longer. There are four loops so you can choose which way the strap tilts over your shoulder (and you can slip a luggage tag through one of the spares).

Although the case is available in beige, dark brown or black, the interior is always black: it looks elegant on the brown colors but rather dull with the black exterior. Harber missed a trick by not choosing something more striking for the interior like scarlet, turquoise or lime that would really pop against the black and make the bag even more special (like the Maroo leather case lined with lime microfiber which I have used for laptops for many years).

A black bag next to a man's leg

The leather looks great but the black interior could be more striking.

Image: Mary Branscombe

The metal zipper also seems less to match the black leather, although again it’s extremely sturdy and has long, easy-to-grab leather tags on both zipper pulls (so you can open it from anywhere). any side, but it doesn’t open to three sides like a laptop case, just halfway up each side). The base is flat: not really wide enough to stand on its own, but it’s not a problem to balance on a table when storing your laptop or grabbing it.

hands opening bag

The strap clip on the handles gives you balance when carrying the bag, but isn’t as easy to get things out of.

Image: Mary Branscombe

All in all, it’s both premium and practical; something of an investment, but durable enough to be a long-term investment.

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