Scott Hanselman

It's a Man-Bag - Muzetto Laptop Messenger Bag Review

July 14, 2009 Comment on this post [28] Posted in Reviews
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muzetto_large_color_black_md Yes, this is a blog post about a Purse. I mean, a Murse, er, a Man-Bag. It's manly and I like it.

It's probably best you stop reading this now, as this post has no code. You've been warned. (This means you, Jeff.)

I like nice shoes, and I like nice bags. I'm always replacing whatever bag I have with a new bag, usually one that I get from a conference. Unfortunately these bags are often cheap nylon and they only last for a few months and they rarely look nice.

I was in the market for a great messenger bag, but one with a tech-person in mind. I wanted separate pockets for my laptop, my Moleskine notebook, USB keys and a few magazines. I shopped around, looked at LOTS of backpacks, then messenger bags. Then I remembered the bag company that I got my Amazon Kindle Sleeve from, (Waterfield). They just came out with a new vertical messenger back for laptops.

muzetto_large_inside_md It's called the "Muzetto" and comes in a 13" and 15" size. They've got a Laptop Sizer that will tell you what to get, given your Make and Model of Laptop.

I got the one with the back inside trim and dark brown leather. It holds my Lenovo T60p or W500 perfectly. I also put my Amazon Kindle and Moleskine in for the perfect hipster bag.

The only downside is that the bag bulges just a little bit when I add my laptops AC Adapter, which was a little disappointing. Just like laptop manufacturers always seem to design the AC Adapter last, and least, so do bag manufacturers. This bag would have been perfect if it had a little AC Adapter "side car" or something.

It is expensive, ranging from $179 to $259 for the largest size, but the quality is clear as soon as you touch it. It's made locally and it shows. I took the bag with me to Norway and it worked great at every point. It's looking a little weathered, as leather does, but it's still the best looking laptop bag I've ever had. Even Scott Bellware thinks it's fabulous!

This is my second item from SFBags/Waterfield and I've been very happy. If you're not into the whole leather/suede thing, they do nylon and more traditional bags for geeks as well.

About Scott

Scott Hanselman is a former professor, former Chief Architect in finance, now speaker, consultant, father, diabetic, and Microsoft employee. He is a failed stand-up comic, a cornrower, and a book author.

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July 14, 2009 10:51
Yes it's a purse, but it's a cool purse! Men can have purses too you know :-) The green+brown one is really nice. Certainly on my wishlist. Would it have enough room for a laptop + adapter and some paper work such as a notepad? Nice review.
July 14, 2009 10:58
It's nice that it doesn't really show that it holds a laptop... In bad neighbourhoods that could add a little passive protection
July 14, 2009 11:08
someone call Rory
July 14, 2009 11:10
Roy, totally, it could (and does) fit that much and some more.
July 14, 2009 11:16
A purse? When I get to Portland next week you and me are going out for chicken wings, beer, and some testosterone. Time for a Bro-intervention.
July 14, 2009 11:22
Tom Bihn too good for ye? it is a nice murse but for some one who power walks everywhere that thing slaping against my thigh all day would kill my laptop, netbook and winmobile.
July 14, 2009 12:27
Scott - hope you have seen these -
July 14, 2009 12:53
Why would it be unmanly to look good?
July 14, 2009 13:45
you... are... a... grrrrl! ;-)
July 14, 2009 13:56
Zat iz trës cüte ! .. ;-P
July 14, 2009 15:08
It doesn't look bad...but you can pry my leather Mandarina Duck over-the-shoulder bag out of my cold, dead fingers! :)
July 14, 2009 16:36
Are the compartments reinforced? Otherwise your expensive gadgets aren't going to last long (especially if you have to bundle your AC adapter, plugs and leads in the main section along with your lappy).

David Pogue also uses a messenger bag on his travels:

(Use BugMeNot to save having to sign up for NYT's site btw.)
July 14, 2009 16:44
Scott ... it's leather ... you have to kill a cow to get the leather ... it's cruel, very, very cruel.
Serious Consequences of Factory Farming

The negative impacts of factory farming go far beyond the inhumane treatment of the animals. There are serious human health issues, severe environmental degradation, and it sustains global hunger.
Beauty Without Cruelty is an animal rights organisation with a primary objective to educate and inform the public about the exploitation, abuse and suffering of animals and to offer humane non-animal alternatives to replace cruel and harmful lifestyle choices. Through peaceful and lawful means, we expose and oppose all cruelty to animals and will lobby national, provincial and local government in this regard.

Sentience: The word “sentience” means “one who has the faculty of sensation and perception”, meaning to have the ability to “feel” physically and emotionally. Animals are sentient beings, although they are presently legally classified in South Africa as “things” or moveable property and BWC believes that this archaic, unjust, legal status must be changed before any worthwhile protective legislation can be passed.

Animal Rights: Animals have natural rights which must be acknowledged in South African law; these include the right to freedom from unnaturally induced pain; the right to shelter; the right to nourishment; the right to indulge their natural instincts; the right to freedom of movement and most importantly, the right to exist. Animals have intrinsic worth and their value should not be based on their usefulness to humans. BWC supports the rights of animals and will work forcefully to obtain such rights on behalf of animals.

Ethical living: Veganism is the only dietary option in keeping with the concept of animals having rights. So-called free-range farming only offers temporary relief from suffering for farm animals by providing better living conditions, in comparison to the cruel battery system, but their births and deaths are as cruel and unacceptable as that of their factory farmed cousins! Living without cruelty should be the aim of all caring people and BWC aims to provide credible information to enable them to make informed lifestyle choices.


Scott .......... there are many excellent, durable bags for laptops ... you do not need leather!!!

Gerry Lowry

July 14, 2009 16:59
@Gerry Lowry - ffs, this is a tech blog, not somewhere to further a political agenda! Maybe the makers of this bag source their leather from cows who are given a wonderful life and killed humanely. Maybe they're given beer to drink and massaged daily, like the cows who produce Kobe beef in Japan. In any case, I hardly think buying a bag or a new pair of shoes is perpetuating world hunger. Copy-and-paste your propaganda somewhere else.
July 14, 2009 17:07
Its a satchel, not a purse. And if it is good enough for Jack Bauer, its good enough for Scott Hanselman.
July 14, 2009 17:11
@ Dave R. ~~ I have the deepest respect for Scott; nevertheless, where cruelty prevails, whether a "tech blog" or IBM* reputably providing technological help to aid the Nazis' Holocaust effort, there is a higher moral obligation to speak up.

* "IBM and the Holocaust", Edwin Black, 2001, Crown Publishers, New York
July 14, 2009 17:25
@Gerry Lowry - are you equating buying a messenger bag with support for the Nazi war effort now? Seriously, this isn't the place. This is a discussion about laptop bags.

Sorry chaps, I won't feed the troll any more...
July 14, 2009 17:53
Wow, Godwin's Law in only 17 comments....
July 14, 2009 17:58
That's a pretty slick bag, but I've always favored a backpack over the 'satchel' (is that what it's called?)

I had a leather case like that before and if I turned near a door frame I would keep hitting the sides of my laptop - I eventually cracked both hinges. Does this bag have any additional padding because it is easy to bust up your laptop without it.

"... you have to kill a cow to get the leather" -- Same thing with cheeseburgers (admittedly the cheese must be acquired else where) - I think has a feedback section as well.
July 14, 2009 20:09
Anything I carry is a briefcase. Plain and simple.
July 14, 2009 20:50
CrunchGear liked it to -
July 17, 2009 12:40
I'm Sorry Scott but it's a girly "Handbag", don't know if that's a UK term, perhaps Purse (a small container for money (in uk)) is the same thing.

I doubt I would "get out alive" walking round my home town with one of those.

...........although I can't help wondering if it comes in black and purple ?
July 18, 2009 11:27
In Canada, many years ago, I carried a small bag many, when it was fashionable for men in Europe but associatied with homosexuals in Canada and the U.S. ....... so back then I used the search engine of that day, a.k.a. requesting a report from the Encyclodia Britannica company, for information about "purses". BinaryJam is correct. Purse did mean a small bag for money. Men in old England carried purses. Then an invention did in the purse: the pocket. Pockets in pants were much more convenient that purses. "Bag" is probably the best word choice for what Scott has called a "Man-Bag"; given it's design, I would call it a shoulder bag; messenger bag is also a good term although it's likely somewhat anachronistic outside of urban areas; bike messengers are more likely to carry back packs since back packs mess less with their centre of gravity. Today, I've a wonderful nylon bag from Wal-mart (I'm somewhat ashamed to admit that I, of necessity shop at Wal-Mart and thus have contributed to exploitation of children in China and loss of jobs in North America). Unlike my spouse, I've yet to become one with it and have been known to leave it behind in restaurants, et cetera.

Like "vulgar" itself, "purse" has become a vulgar (sic) word. Almost any bag like thing in which one carrys around her/his stuff can be correctly calle "a purse". Many homophobic males are reluctant to call their bag a purse. Get over it!

......... What's in a name? that which we call a rose
......... By any other name would smell as sweet;

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. BinaryJam sees Scott's bag as "girly" ... which it may or may not be ... that does not mean that Scott himself is "girly" ... it takes courage to carry a bag that some may ridicule.

@Dave R: "troll" is a put down and an ad hominem argument. You misunderstood and saw an equation where none existed. That you misundertood indicates that I failed to communicate. I was very simply talking about the need to address the wrongs from which we selfishly look away ... I say selfish because we do not want to think about morality ... if we did, we might compel ourselves to take the lonely moral high road.

@Andy R: until your comment, I did not even know about Godwin's law. So much to know, so little time. While it may have appeared that way to you, it was in fact not an instance of Godwin's law. AFAIK, Godwin's law is simply a special case of the ad hominem argument from which I refrain because of its inherent illogic.

@webdev_hb: F.Y.I.: to get cheese for your cheesburgers, actually you must kill five cows: the mother must be repeatedly made to birth calves. The calves are four of the five: one calf will become veal (; two calves will immediately become "bock veal" (a.k.a. dog food) *; the fourth calf will replace the mother; the mother will be the fifth because she will be prematurrely slaughtered when her production drops off (imagine is we did that to programmers). *

BTW, to all, I was not attacking Scott. Scott is a great human who often writes educational and meaningful articles like ~~ life with diabetes makes you stronger in many ways ... I'm thankful that I do not have Scott's daily ordeal.

Gerry Lowry
July 18, 2009 11:31
"I doubt I would "get out alive" walking round my home town with one of those."

@BinaryJam: that's frightening ... you might want to let Scott know where your home town is so that he can avoid it for his own safety and well being.
July 18, 2009 18:44
Hey Scott, where do you get your shoes from? (Wife is asking)
July 20, 2009 13:35
@Gerry Lowry

(This might seem a bit harsh but it's not personal, just reflections on a boring monday)

If you are indeed a vegan, you have a good heart. I also like animals, and want them to have "good lives" insofar as we as humans are able to determine what that means to an animal.
But what is the solution really? Every idealist I meet seem to pick one idea and then just stop to think about it.

If you are a vegan (and surviving), you are eating a lot of special vegetables that need specialized farms to make. Farms that need fertilizers, fertilizers that get drained into the oceans causing all kinds of suffering for animals in the sea. Farms that need water that drains wetlands, killing the animals there. The food needs to be transported to all the different supermarkets in the world where a vegan can go buy them, causing even more pain and suffering in the world as a whole.

One step further: If that is you in the picture, you are wearing a shirt and glasses. You are using a computer. How many animals are being killed in order to support the (most likely) 3rd world factory workers who created that computer, those glasses, that shirt? They are probably not vegans, because being a vegan is a really, really expensive way to survive.

So in a way each item you buy has a certain cost in killed animals. Unless you only buy stuff made entirely by vegans all the way.

What it boils down to is that if I live as a normal member of the western civilized world, I am beyond moral hope in the global ecological sense.
Am I being "better" if I eat strange plants from a different continent, rather than a locally killed cow? Or if I don't eat killed cows but I buy luxury items that lets a dozen very poor cow-eaters continue to eat cows?

I don't think so, all things considered.
August 04, 2009 16:57
Like the man-bag, I always carry my man-bag. My wife always joked until I stopped taking it to the shops and then all my junk needs to go into her handbag, so now she prefers me having the man-bag, a lot less junk in her handbag.

@gerry lowry, what are you on about, this is a tech blog, not some ideology blog punting different views on life, so please take your debates somewhere else except of course if you are a Java pungent, that you can debate on a tech blog if you are looking for a fight, or just go to your local bar, lots of hot heads to be found there.
October 01, 2009 14:47
Hey @gerry lowry. I am the most moral person on this post as I only eat Vegans. All that tofu you guys eat makes you so tender and juicy, and I have the added sauce of all that self righteousness for flavor.

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Disclaimer: The opinions expressed herein are my own personal opinions and do not represent my employer's view in any way.