Shaun S.wrote a review of Osprey Packs Stratos 34L Backpack on June 26, 2018
The Stratos 34 is a Stratos 36 without the brain lid, and loses a tremendous amount of versatility in so doing. All panel loaders sacrifice loading versatility and efficiency for sleekness, but this pack I think sacrifices too much. The Stratos 24, 34, and 36 sport a vertical front panel pouch this year; it should have been a shove-it pouch like the 50 - preferably one with a map pocket. The current pouch design is rather small and difficult to load effectively. This trait carries over into the organizer pockets. While the slash pocket on the top of the front panel is OK, the main organizer pocket on the top of the bag is simply is a small pouch that drops into the main volume of the bag. As you fill the main bag up, it crowds out the organizer pouch. A better design would have the main organizer pocket immediately behind the slash pocket and tacked to the front panel, so that its contents would remain accessible as the main volume filled. With the present design you must choose between filling the organizer pockets or filling the main volume, and thus the full 34L capacity and organizational features of the bag are often not realized. The load lifter function and adjustability of the Stratos is great, but it's difficult to get a good fit in the bag if you're just under the torso height breakpoint like I am. The M/L is the better choice; maxing out the S/M adjustment causes the bag to flop backwards and one must rely on the load lifters for basic fit. Bottom line - this feels more like luggage than a backpack.