In this article, we are going to compare two great backpacks from a well-known manufacturer, North Face Jester vs Borealis. These two models seem to be very similar, yet there are subtle differences that set them apart. So, should you choose North Face Jester or Borealis?
Continue reading below to learn further about:
– The size and weight of each backpack model here
– The design and build quality of each model
– The similar features that both models have
– The distinctive features of North Face Jester vs Borealis
– Which backpack that gives the best value for the money
Size and Weight
First of all, let’s compare the dimensions of these two backpacks. The Jester and the Borealis are generally compact and lightweight, ideal for daily commuting, but one is a bit bigger and heavier than the other. See also: Osprey Nova vs Nebula.
North Face Jester is the slimmer and lighter model of the two. It measures 13.25 inches wide, 19.75 inches high, and 7.5 inches deep. The weight of the backpack alone is about 2 lbs. So, if you prefer the most compact and lightweight backpack available, it can be a great choice.
On the other hand, North Face Borealis is slightly bigger and heavier. It measures 13.25 inches wide, 19.75 inches high, and 8.5 inches deep. The weight is about 2.12 lbs. As you can see, most of the dimensions are similar except for the depth. So, the fit and feel will be mostly similar.
North Face Jester, as expected, has a smaller storage capacity due to the slimmer design. This backpack ‘only’ has an internal space of 26 liters. For daily commuting to work or school, the capacity is already sufficient. You can put a laptop, a tablet, and a few books inside it. This backpack is good for those who prefer to travel light.
North Face Borealis comes with a larger storage capacity. The internal space is about 28 liters. The extra space is useful for bringing some spare clothes, a few snacks, or a meal box. This backpack is great for daily commuting. It may also be used as a daypack for a short trip that doesn’t go for more than one day.
Design and Build
Somehow, North Face Jester vs Borealis share some resemblances with each other. They both have bungee cords on the front panels. These bungee cords aren’t just for decoration; you can use the bungee cords for carrying external gear or items that you want to separate from your other belongings, such as a helmet. They both also have mesh side pockets and padded top handles for easy hauling.
Both models have nicely padded back panels that are very comfortable without any pressure point. In addition, they both have reflective bike light loops that can help to increase your visibility in low-light conditions even when they don’t have any bike light attached.
However, they are actually made from different materials. North Face Jester is indeed quite durable, but if you need a highly durable backpack that can hold a heavy load and withstand some abuse, North Face Borealis is more recommended.
North Face Jester is mainly constructed from polyester. This material dries quickly and is abrasion-resistant. In addition, it is also resistant to wrinkling, shrinking, and stretching. So, it is quite easy to maintain.
North Face Borealis is mainly constructed from nylon. Just like polyester, this material is also resistant to wrinkling, shrinking, and stretching. However, unlike polyester, this material is softer yet stronger. As the effect, the backpack has a certain premium feel about it, and is generally tougher and more durable.
Laptop and Tablet Sleeves
North Face Jester vs Borealis have laptop and tablet sleeves. Their laptop sleeves are padded for protection against impact, and both are designed for 15-inch laptops. However, there are a few distinctive features here that make the Jester good and the Borealis great.
North Face Jester has a slightly bigger laptop sleeve, which measures 12 inches x 14 inches. Nevertheless, the compartment won’t fit laptops that are larger than 15-inch. The increased size simply makes it easier to put in and take out your laptop.
North Face Borealis has a laptop sleeve which measures 12 inches x 13 inches. You can fit a 15-inch laptop inside it just fine. The slightly smaller size actually helps to keep the laptop securely in place, so that the laptop won’t bump around when you are moving fast.
In addition, their tablet sleeves and external pockets are also slightly different. You can find their tablet sleeves in their front compartments. North Face Jester only has a simple tablet sleeve and external pockets that are not fleece-lined. As the effect, it won’t protect your tablet and delicate items from scratches. On the other hand, North Face Borealis comes with a tablet sleeve and external pockets that are fleece-lined, so your delicate items won’t get scratched while inside the backpack.
Compression Straps and Waist Belt
North Face Jester does not have any compression straps. As the effect, it will feel as if it is hanging loosely when it is not fully loaded. Your items may move around inside the backpack. North Face Jester does have a waist belt to help you stabilize a heavy load and distribute the weight, but the waist belt is not removable.
North Face Borealis comes with compressions straps, which are very useful for keeping your items in place when the backpack is not fully loaded. As the effect, the backpack will feel more stable. In addition, North Face Borealis features a removable waist belt, which is useful for stabilizing the load and distributing the weight when carrying a heavy load. You can remove the waist belt when it is not needed.
North Face Jester vs Borealis
- The updated FlexVent suspension system features a flexible yoke built from custom injection-molded shoulder straps, an unbelievably comfortable padded mesh back panel and a highly breathable lumbar panel for maximum breathability all day long
- Large main compartment for books and binders, padded laptop sleeve in the main compartment protects your goods from bumps and falls, padded laptop sleeve in the main compartment protects your goods from bumps and falls
- Updated front elastic bungee system for external storage, two extended mesh water bottle pockets, and reflective bike-light loop, water bottle tabs and shoulder-strap webbing create 360 degrees of reflectivity
- Reflective bike-light loop, water bottle tabs and shoulder-strap webbing create 360 degrees of reflectivity
- Volume: 29L, Avg weight: 1 lb 12.9 oz, 19.75" x 13.25" x 7.5" (Laptop Sleeve: 11.5" x 13.5"), fabrics: 600D polyester emboss and print
- Classic 28-liter backpack updated with easy-to-access pockets and an overhauled suspension system
- Padded, fleece-lined 15" laptop sleeve in main compartment protects laptop from bumps and falls
- The FlexVent suspension system boasts custom injection-molded shoulder straps and a padded mesh back panel with a spine channel for maximum support and ventilation
- 360 degree reflective bike-light loop, water bottle tabs and shoulder strap webbing
- Side compression straps offer the ability to adjust load, Padded top haul handle, Sternum strap with whistle buckle, Removable waist belt, Lifetime warranty.
All in all, North Face Borealis is the better backpack here. It may look similar to the Jester, but it is made from a stronger, more durable material. It also offers a slightly larger internal space. The tablet sleeve and external pockets are fleece-lined, so they can protect your items from scratches. Plus, it comes with handy compression straps and a removable waist belt.