Are you considering getting a hiking backpack and are having a difficult time choosing which brand to pick in the battle of Deuter vs Osprey?
No worries, we understand you completely.
Deuter and Osprey are two of the most popular sporting backpack brands on the market. Some people are very loyal to one brand or another.
Read on to see our take on these two popular backpack manufacturers.
TOP Deuter and Osprey Backpacks
|Osprey Packs Daylite Plus Daypack|
|Deuter Speed Lite 20 Athletic Daypack|
|Osprey Atmos 65 AG Backpack|
|Deuter Act Lite 65+10 Hiking Backpack|
Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate, we earn from qualifying purchases if you shop through the links on Independent Wolf. For more information, read full disclosure here.
- Ultimate Comparison – Deuter VS Osprey
- Our Picks for Deuter’s Best Backpacks 2023
- Our Picks for Osprey’s Best Backpacks 2023
- Camping, Hiking, and Sporting Events
- Our Overall Rating – Deuter vs Osprey
- Deuter vs Osprey Backpacks – The Final Showdown
Ultimate Comparison – Deuter VS Osprey
If you’ve never owned either kind of backpack, you probably don’t know which one is going to work out best for you.
If you’re a first-time purchaser, it’s time to break down the Deuter vs Osprey debate.
Let’s look at some key comparisons you should take into account, like price, design, and reputation.
About each Brand
Some history about both Deuter and Osprey.
Deuter Sport is a German brand, and they’ve been around for a long time. They’ve been making gear since 1898, giving them well over a century of experience.
It was founded by Hans Deuter and they supplied backpacks for the British Royal Mail, eventually creating backpacks for the military, and moving into other types of camping gear.
The company grew over the years, eventually moving backpack production to Vietnam in 1994. Today, the company is headquartered in Germany.
They’re also an environmentally friendly brand – they donate a portion of their proceeds on select bags to preserve the Bavarian Alps.
Deuter makes nothing but bags and backpacks, and they make every variety you could possibly dream of.
They’re a specialty brand, and they’ve devoted all of their time and resources to create the perfect bag for every occasion.
Osprey is been wholesaling their goods since 1987 and it is headquartered in Cortez, Colorado. The brand’s founder, Mike Pfotenhauer, started out as a backpacking enthusiast.
He made custom designed packs for hikers and campers before eventually deciding on a large number of present designs he could offer for sale on the mass market.
These packs are produced in Vietnam, but Mike stayed in Ho Chi Minh for four years to teach his production teams to stitch the packs the way he designed them.
Both brands manufacture their gear in Vietnam.
They come from different factories, but similar working conditions.
The biggest difference between the quality of Osprey and Deuter bags is the emphasis that Deuter puts on eco-friendly initiatives.
While either bag will be well constructed and built to last, only one of them is made with an environmental initiative.
If earth-friendly brands are important to you, Deuter wins out here.
They work harder to use naturally sourced materials and donate some of their profits back to nature preservation.
Osprey still uses high-quality materials, but they aren’t as environmentally conscious. This is something to consider when the source is just as important to you as the final product.
The hiking backpacks manufactured by Deuter utilize a 210 Denier ripstop fabric that is durable and light and has a polyurethane coating.
Other materials used are Deuter super Polytex 600 Denier Ripstop made with polyester thread and a polyurethane coating and a macro line 410 denier, tight weave polyamide fabric for high abrasion products like the Deuter Guide Series hiking backpack.
The foam mesh pads on the back pump air, ventilating the back. Their harness adjusts with a Velcro close making it super easy to adjust and the hip straps move with you.
Deuter has a superior harness system not matched by other hiking backpack manufacturers, except perhaps Osprey.
Their packs feature deep water bottle pockets and front kangaroo pouch style pockets. They have backpacks specifically designed for women’s smaller shape and different center of gravity.
Osprey makes backpacks with a reputation for high quality and thoughtful design.
They too have one of the best suspension systems, their backpacking packs have an easily adjustable harness and a mesh suspension panel that allows complete airflow and keeps the pack off your back.
The design features of Osprey packs are fabulous, like removable lids, on the go trekking pole storage, removable straps that securely stow out of the way, internal compression straps and hip belt pads that extend to fit larger folks are just a few design features that set Osprey backpacking packs apart.
So the overall conclusion is this:
Both companies use high-quality durable materials, zippers, buckles and similar fasteners.
Deuter backpacks have a reputation for being able to take a beating and stand u to the abuse, lasting many years, even the company itself has been around for 111 years.
Duter packs are said to be comfortable and fit well, some say they fit better than Ospreys, but each person is different so YMMV.
The Deuter backpacks do have a narrower gap between shoulder straps, especially women’s models.
That said, Deuter packs are very adjustable making them a pack a teenager could grow into, and fitting many torso lengths.
Osprey packs are backed by a lifetime guarantee, which many Osprey pack owners love.
The mesh suspension does what it promises, it keeps your back cool, on the other hand, the mesh suspension panel has the potential to change your center of gravity a bit since it holds the pack away from your body.
The Osprey packs do not integrate waterproofing into the bag, so get the rain cover as rain will be an issue.
Osprey packs also have a lot of organization features and pockets, hooks, internal compression straps, removable lids and other features Osprey fans rave about.
The biggest difference when it comes to Deuter vs Osprey backpacks is the designs the brands use.
They’re both high quality, but they’re both for very different kinds of people. The designs determine which kind of backpack is the best choice for which kind of person.
Think about what you’re going to do with your backpack – that’s where you’ll find the answers.
Deuter mostly makes tall, round trekking style backpacks – the kind of bags that are measured in how many liters they can hold.
Styles like the Deuter ACT Lite 50+10 Hiking Backpack are designed to cover you from the top of your legs up to your shoulders and meant to evenly distribute the weight of your supplies across your back.
Bags like the Deuter Junior utilize that same kind of design but in a much more compact size.
For short trips, you’ll want a bag that’s a little more like the Junior. If you want something that looks more like a carry-on backpack, the Deuter Speed Lite series will probably work better for you.
It comes in a 10-liter, 15-liter, and 20-liter size, so you can choose how much space you’ll need.
The biggest design signature of a Deuter bag is their roundness. They’re kind of tube-shaped, allowing you to stuff more inside of the bag and make the most use of the space.
This sometimes means the pack won’t lay flat against your back, especially when it’s full. You’ll be able to carry more, but the pack may stick out a little further.
Osprey’s most popular style is their Daylite bag. The Daylite style, like most of their other styles, is the traditional “turtle shell” shape.
It lays flat against the bag, and the load is carried outwards in a convex shape. These are shaped like the kind of backpacks you probably used for school, but they’re much larger.
It’s a familiar design, and it’s intuitive to use.
They also offer the cylindrical kind of bags that hikers and trekkers that need to carry a lot of things with them. The Osprey Men’s Atmos AG line of backpacks reflect that style.
The Women’s Aura and the EXOs line are also designed for heavy duty camping. Overall, Osprey presents a wide range of designs.
You can find whatever kind of backpack you’re looking for.
The prices between Deuter and Osprey backpacks are very similar. Bargaining shouldn’t be a factor in deciding which backpack you want to buy.
Similar styles between the brands run about the same price – there are very few differences. There’s no real reason to be concerned about the prices.
Both brands are priced in the mid-range.
Cheaper outdoor backpacks pop up all over the place, but they never live up to the quality standards put forth by Deuter or Osprey.
There are more expensive backpacks, but there isn’t a reason to pay more when Deuter and Osprey both offer excellent quality at a reasonable price point.
Our Picks for Deuter’s Best Backpacks 2023
Deuter Speed Lite 20 Athletic Daypack
This definitely is the best Deuter bacpack for the money.
It’s an ergonomic design with compression straps that can be used to carry larger pieces of gear with you.
The whole pack weighs 1 pound and 3 ounces, virtually nothing over the shoulders. The cushioned straps make it comfortable to wear, and a compartment for a 3-liter hydration system.
It even comes with optional chest and hip belts for when you need better stability.
Deuter ACT Lite 65+10 Hiking Backpack
A large hiking backpacking internal frame 75-liter pack that has an outside compartment for a helmet, and adjustable harness, and room for all your gear. Plus, it is water resistant.
The adjustability of this backpack makes it a perfect fit for just about everybody.
Deuter Futura Vario 50+10 Hiking Backpack
A heavy duty 60-liter internal frame backpack with an adjustable harness and internal wet bag to separate gear.
Our Picks for Osprey’s Best Backpacks 2023
Osprey Packs Daylite Plus Daypack
Front compartments make it easy to access things you’ll need to get to quickly, and the inside features a hydration reservoir pocket for trips out in the heat.
The back panel is made of cut foam and vented to promote airflow.
Osprey Men’s Aether 60 Backpack
A 60 liter internal frame hiking and backpacking pack for men.
Includes trekking pole storage, an external hydration sleeve, adjustable harness, mesh back panel and front open panel for easy access to the main compartment.
Osprey Men’s Atmos 65 AG Backpacks
A 65-liter internal frame backpack for hiking and backpacking with an adjustable harness, mesh panel back, removable top lid, and draw string close to the main compartment at the top.
Camping, Hiking, and Sporting Events
If you need an outdoor backpack, you’re probably going to camp, hike, or do something else outside.
Certain designs are better for certain activities.
Think about how you want to use your backpack when you get it – these brands perform differently depending on what you plan to do.
If you’re hammock camping, go for a large sized Deuter backpack. They’re designed to carry as much weight as possible without putting a strain on your back.
If you’re going car camping and you only need bags to store and transport your gear around your campsite, one of the smaller Osprey bags will probably work out perfect for you.
If you’re only hiking for a few hours, a compact Osprey bag will probably be perfect for you.
You’ll have a hydration reservoir, and enough space to pack things like emergency provisions and food.
If you’re going on a long hiking trip, a Deuter backpack will probably work out better for you.
You’re going to need to carry more than just a light meal and a modest supply of water if you’re thru-hiking, or at least spending a few days out on the trails.
A team that runs, jogs, soccer games, or volunteers outdoors will all have different supply requirements.
The better bag in this scenario largely depends on how much stuff you’re going to need to carry with you.
If you’re out volunteering, you’ll probably want to bring enough stuff to get you through the days, and perhaps a change of clothes.
Bigger Deuter bags are designed better for these purposes.
If you’re going on a team run or jog, everything you need to carry would fit perfectly in a smaller volume Osprey daypack.
These smaller packs are always a better choice when the wearer will need to move quickly – they’re less likely to hurt from bumping up against you while you’re running as fast as you can.
Our Overall Rating – Deuter vs Osprey
- Deuter: 9/10
- Osprey: 9/10
Both these companies make excellent backpacks, it would be a crime to choose one over the other.
The one thing we can say is Osprey packs are a little easier to get in the US but that is changing quickly as Deuter set up a US subsidiary.
Deuter vs Osprey Backpacks – The Final Showdown
When it comes to Deuter vs Osprey backpacks, they’re both great. All that matters is that you pick a bag that’s a style, size, and color that you like.
In terms of price and quality, both brands are fairly comparable. It’s hard to declare a clear winner when it comes to value for money.
The only area in which Deuter comes out ahead is their environmentally friendly business policies.
They try very carefully to reduce the amount of waste they generate in production, and they use sustainable materials.
They’re also actively donating to protect Bavarian forests, so some of your money is going to a good cause.
If you’re looking to make more eco-friendly choices, then Deuter wins out in the end.
Get 50 Solo Travel Safety Tips eBook for FREE
No more reading loads of posts about solo traveler safety. Get your 50 point safety list in one eBook. Be ready, stay safe!