In this Deuter ACT Zero 50 15 review I present an award winning lightweight and reliable pack from the world famous brand, suitable for backpackers, hikers, and climbers.
Stand out features
- Roll-top option.
- Removable lid, to use as a summit pack.
- Plus 15 liters of volume.
Best price & place to buy
- The best place regarding the price and shipping conditions is usually Amazon.com.
Description of the pack
This pack offers 50 plus 15 liters of volume. The extra 15 liters you get when you expand the top collar and adjust the lid accordingly. So this is a traditional top loading pack with this single entrance to the main compartment.
You have a roll-top option here, this is possible because the top collar is so lengthy. So you roll it up and attach to the pack through two buckles that are there for this purpose. You can see this configuration in the picture below.
Of course, this implies that the lid is both movable and removable. You can use it as a small summit pack or day pack because it is equipped with its own straps. See it below in one of the pictures.
On the sides of the pack, you have the usual upper and lower compression straps. On the bottom section of the front you have dual removable compression straps for sleeping pad or for tent, or just to compress the pack in case of a small load (well, I always have too much of load so the compression is not an option for me, but you may be more economical).
One large attachment loop is on one (right) side of the bottom section, and you have two small loops on the other side. They are accompanied with bungee tie-offs higher up on the front.
On the top of the lid, you have additional four attachment loops, they are visible in the picture of the ‘summit pack’ below.
The hydration sleeve is inside the main compartment.
The suspension of Deuter ACT Zero 50 + 15 is based on Deuter’s Aircontact system. This is one of around 20 they have developed for their packs.
So the suspension is based on an anatomically profiled metal X-frame, which is the best for balance, torsional rigidity and flexibility. You can see its beauty in the picture on the right.
The back is with a very breathable padding and with ventilating hollow chamber foam. The purpose of it is that with your movement a pump effect is created, this forces the air to circulate through the breathable Aircontact cushions.
Shoulder straps are padded, contoured, and anatomic, and with 3D Air mesh lining.
This pack is one size, but it comes with Deuter’s Vari-Quick system for an easy torso adjustment to any length. It is ladder-type and it allows for adjustability in a broad range, a great feature to have in particular if you are buying this pack for youth; the pack will grow with them. This is all easy to adjust, just break the velcro tab, re-position the harness at desired length and then close the velcro tab again. You can see it in the picture below.
You have Deuter’s Vari Flex system which allows hip fins to move and to follow your body movement. This is essential for a good balance when you carry a heavy load.
The hip fins are anatomically shaped, generously padded (see the picture) and they are constructed from multiple layers. So you have the soft inner foam layer with 3D AirMesh lining, and from outside you have a much a more firm foam, shaped to follow your body structure, all with the idea of an optimal transfer of the weight to your hips.
You have side compression straps on the fins. They are here to regulate the load and stability.
You have (only) one zippered hip belt pocket here, this is typical for many Deuter’s packs.
On the lid, you have one large zippered pocket with access from outside. This will be your main compartment if/when you use it detached from the pack, as your summit pack. Yet another zippered pocket is on the underside of the lid.
One huge extendable pocket is on the front of the pack, it is secured with two buckles and straps on the top. It is nicely designed and has stretchy mesh on both sides.
The usual stretch water bottle pockets are on both sides of the pack.
All the features of this pack you can see in this very useful video:
Just a quick reminded, Deuter is a German company established in 19th century, in 1898, with a lot of tradition and experience in the backpack making industry. Their packs are a synonym for reliability and quality. I own one of their packs, using it in the past 13 years without any problem ever, so the statements here reflect my own personal opinion and experience with this brand.
This particular pack has been on the market for several years already. In has received 2011 Outside Gear of the Year Award.
Pros & cons
Here I give some cons (which do not have to be your own cons of course), this is about features which I love to have in a pack of this size or in general. Clearly, I have much more on the pros side:
This pack has received 4.4/5 average rate by Amazon customers. Note that the rain cover can be ordered here.
- Weight: 3 lb 6 oz (1530 g).
- Volume: 3050 + 920 cubic inches (50 + 15 L).
- Size (H x W x D): 30 x 12 x 9.4 in (76 x 30 x 24 cm).
- Warranty: lifetime.
– Duratex-Lite/Ripstop 210.
– Aluminum X-frame.
- Colors: 2.
- Deuter Aircontact adjustable suspension. Torso fit 15 – 21 inches.
- Removable lid serves as 15 L summit pack.
- Vari-Quick back length adjustment.
- Anatomically shaped shoulder straps.
- Lightweight aluminum X-frame.
- Expandable collar with roll-top closure feature.
- Hydration compatible.
- Double-layered base for abrasion resistance and durability.
Comparison with other brands
In this table you can see how Deuter ACT Zero 50 15 stands among the crowd, I give a few true top models of some other brands:
|Deuter ACT Zero 50+15||Osprey Aura 50 AG||Kelty Redwing 50|
|Zippered side pockets||no||no||yes|
As always with lightweight packs, the first thing that comes to mind is: what is it missing there? As you see, Deuter ACT Zero 50+15 is indeed very lightweight but it lacks some features that may be of importance for you, although it is indeed a great pack.
But it also has some extra features which other packs do not have, like top roll feature, and extra 15 liters of volume, a huge space which you will need.
In the moment of writing this text, the prices for the models in the table are, respectively: $189, 230, 140. So my rating is rather personal, based on feeling, all the features, and the price.
To conclude this Deuter ACT Zero 50 15 review, this pack is with somewhat minimalist design, but it comes with some unique features which you will not find in its competitors. These include a roll-top feature, a removable top lid which is then used as a summit pack, and extra 15 liters of volume when you need them. This is a reliable pack, nothing less one can expect from a brand like Deuter.
I have a lot of good experience with my Deuter’s pack and can fully recommend this brand and this pack to anybody. You might want to know that there exists also a model for women Deuter ACT Zero 45 15.
It will be great to have some comment from you, there is a comment box below. Thank you and have a nice day wherever you are.