Osprey Nebula Vs Quasar

The key to a comfortable and gratifying travel or commute experience is having the right gear with you. Choosing a good backpack can help you achieve this, and if you’re looking for a good backpack, you might want to look at what Osprey has to offer.

Osprey is one of the world’s leading backpack and daypack brands. Their products are legendary.

In fact, since the Company’s inception in 1974, the founder has personally inspected and scrutinized every single Osprey product for quality.

In this review, we focus on the Osprey Quasar Vs the Osprey Nebula. These backpack models are among the brand’s best-selling units.

Both are compact and lightweight making them ideal for daily commuting.

They are both designed to make carrying your laptop, tablet, books, and other personal effects easier while withstandingdaily abuse and ensuring your gear is safe from external damage.

So, which one is better, the Nebula or the Quasar?

We’ve designed this in-depth comparison review to help answer just that so that you can be confident you’ve chosen the best backpack available.

Specs Overview – Osprey Quasar Vs Nebula

AttributeOsprey Nebula
Our Best Pick
Osprey Quasar
Gear Capacity34 liters /2,075 cubic inches28 liters / 1,709 cubic inches
Dimensions20 x 13 x 12 inches19 x 12 x 11 inches
Weight2 lbs. 1.5 oz.1 lb. 11 oz.
Material(s)210-denier nylon OxfordRipstop nylon
Number of Exterior Pockets4 + main compartments5 + main compartments
Laptop CompartmentYesYes
Fits Laptop Size17 inches15 inches
Tablet CompartmentYesYes
Best useTravelTravel
Features• Heat-embossed slash pocket
• Side stretch-mesh pockets
• Front panel organization pocket
• Blinker light attachment
• Top grab handle
• Removable 20 mm webbing hipbelt
• Padded laptop sleeve
• Padded tablet sleeve
• Suspended mesh ventilated backpanel
• Separate zippered laptop access
• TSA airport-approved security laptop sleeve
• Front panel stretch-mesh pocket
• Heat-embossed slash pocket
• Side stretch-mesh pockets
• Front panel organization pocket
• Blinker light attachment
• Top grab handle
• Removable 20 mm webbing hipbelt
• Padded laptop sleeve
• Padded tablet sleeve
• Front panel vertical center-zippered pocket
• Front panel bungee compression and storage
PriceCheck PriceCheck Price

Now, let’s get to a detailed comparison of the Osprey Quasar and the Osprey Nebular.

You want to be sure you’re getting the right backpack for your needs in terms of size, weight, storage compartments, build quality, and value.

Size and Capacity

The Osprey Nebula is larger than the Quasar. The Quasar measures 19 x 12 x 11 inches and weighs about 1.69 pounds. With this size, it offers 28 liters of gear capacity.

This is not a lousy capacity if you are looking for a backpack to carry just the essential stuff for daily commuting, such as to work or school.

However, if you usually carry a little more than the essential tools in your backpack, you might want to go for a somewhat larger backpack.

Then you can’t wrong with Osprey Nebula. This model measures 20 x 13 x 12 inches, weighs a little over 2 pounds, and can hold a total of 34 liters of gear.

Design and Construction

These two backpacks have a number of features in common. These include:

  • Vertical zippered pocket
  • The front organization pocket
  • Separate zippered laptop access

In choosing which one to buy between the two, it’s also important to understand their differences. These include:

  • Laptop compartment

The Osprey Quasar features a smaller laptop sleeve. Its laptop compartment can only accommodate a 15-inch laptop.

The Nebula boasts a wider laptop sleeve, which can accommodate a 17-inch laptop. This means the Nebula may be a better choice if you have a larger laptop.

If you are a frequent air-traveler, it is advisable to invest in a checkpoint friendly backpack, which makes Osprey Nebula an excellent choice for you as well.

The Nebula is equipped with a TSA-approved laptop sleeve making it exceptionally convenient for traveling.

With the Quasar, you have to take out your laptop from the bag at eachcheckpoint. This can be inconveniencing and time-consuming.

  • Storage space

The Nebula offers more space than the Quasar. Quasar features a front-panel bungee compression and storage area.

While the Nebula, on the other hand, features a front –panel stretch-mesh pocket. This pocket can come in handy when you have lots of small items to carry.

  • Color choices

Nebula comes with more color choices, six to be precise. Quasar offers one less option with only five color choices.

Those colors include black, robust red, armor gray, komodo green, and navy blue.


These backpack models offer virtually the same level of durability as they are made using the same materials.

The fabric used on the main compartment is tough, highly durable 420HD Nylon Packcloth. Then 210D Nylon Stripe Twill is used for the accent fabric.

Both models are rugged and long-lasting. They are designed to withstand the abuse of everyday use and to protect your gear from external damage.

The final call: Osprey Quasar vs. Nebula

Osprey backpacks are designed to make sure you can enjoy any kind of travel without having to worry about the safety of your gear and your pack.

In choosing between Osprey Quasar and Osprey Nebula, we would recommend the Nebula.

Osprey Nebula offers the best value for your money. It boasts not only a better gear capacity but also a larger laptop sleeve.

What’s more, it is much more convenient for traveling as it’s TSA-approved.

Nonetheless, if you are looking for a more compact option and don’t mind removing your laptop from your backpack at airport checkpoints, Osprey Quasar may work well for you.

>>Check Osprey Nebula Vs Comet


Chief editor here at Sky-Liners, Breana is a former expat and outdoor enthusiast who grew up on camping, hunting, and hiking. If she could live anywhere, it would be a tree fort in the woods. For now, she's surviving on weekly hiking trips and monthly mountain breaks. You can read more about Breana's adventures on her blog at 3rdCultureWife.

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