The Osprey Talon Velocity 30 and Talon Pro 30 packs share many features, but Velocity excels in weight and harness design, while Talon Pro offers a robust frame and wide-mouth zip opening. Read here about the nuances to choose the perfect Osprey Talon pack for your day tours.
Why this comparison
Osprey Talon Velocity 30 and Osprey Talon Pro 30 packs belong to two sub-groups within the Talon & Tempest packs for men and women, respectively.
The Talon Pro group includes packs of 20, 30, and 40 liters for men. The Talon Velocity packs are available in the volumes of 20 and 30 liters, also for men. Just to mention that they also have versions for women under the name Tempest.
The packs are versatile and loaded with useful features. They may look similar but there are important differences as well, and you will see all this below.
It is convenient to compare the same volumes/sizes, so this is why the focus of this text is on the 30-liters versions. Clearly, these are packs suitable for day tours, both for hiking and mountaineering.
Similarities between Talon Velocity 30 and Talon Pro 30 packs
So here are the most important features that these packs share:
- BioStretch harness.
- Close-to-body fit.
- AirScape back panel.
- Adjustable torso length.
- Top access only, but the designs are very different, more below.
- External reservoir sleeve. It is located between the harness and the main compartment.
- Nylon fabric.
- Bluesign approved.
- Two tuck-away type loops on the bottom for poles or for ice axes, matched with bungee tie-offs higher on the pack.
- Two zippered hip belt pockets.
- Helmet carry option, but very different designs in the two packs.
- The same recommended maximum carry weight of 25 lb (11 kg).
- No rain cover, pity.
As you realize, there are many common features in these two packs, and I might have even missed a few.
Note that there are two different versions of the Talon Pro pack on the market. This is typical for Osprey, it is sometimes hard to follow their hyperproduction.
But in this text, I am referring to the one that is currently on the Osprey’s site, this is supposed to be the latest one. If you visit REI, you will probably see both versions; the new pack is without front pocket, as in the top picture above, this is an easy way to recognize it.
I have collected the main differences in the table below.
Weight, lb (kg)
Volume, l (cub in)
Top closure type
Talon Velocity 30
Talon Pro 30
*The previous version, which is still widely available around, has two mesh pockets on the harness.
Based on the parameters and features from the table above, I can now give my rating of the two packs. In the table below I give + for a feature where one pack is better than the other pack.
Carry weight comfort
Talon Velocity 30
Talon Pro 30
I can now say a few words about reasons for + and – given in the table.
Volume/Weight ratio: It is obvious that the Velocity pack is considerably lighter although it is slightly bigger. It is in the category of ultralight packs, you can compare it with the Arc’teryx Aerios 30 Pack and Big Agnes Ditch Rider 32L Pack.
Pockets: The Osprey Talon Velocity 30 wins big here. The best part of its design are those four pockets on the shoulder harness, see the picture below. This is a running-vest-inspired feature, but useful with every pack.
Carry weight comfort: Here I give advantage to the Talon Pro pack because it has both a 4 mm LightWire peripheral frame that effectively transfers load to hip belt, and an injection-molded AirScape framesheet.
In the Osprey Talon Velocity 30 pack you have only a mesh covered EVA foam on an Atilon framesheet. From what I have found around, Atilon is a sort of polyethylene.
The official carry weight capacity is the same, but I am convinced that having a frame is a better option. Though for small load this may not be so important.
But now you can better understand the weight difference of the two packs; this is likely due to the frame which makes the Talon Pro pack a bit heavier. So the extra weight is there for a good reason.
Access: The Talon Pro 30 has a wide-mouth, bucket-style main compartment zip opening, and in my view this is much better than the cinch cord closure and strap that you have in the Talon Velocity 30 pack.
I can hear you saying hey, zippers can fail and cinch cord not. True, but here you have YKK RC external zippers, the best that are available. On the other hand, rain protection with the cinch cord closure is not really impressive.
Attachment options: My + goes to the Velocity pack mainly because it has Osprey’s unique Stow-on-the-Go attachment for trekking poles.
Not familiar with it? Well, if you use trekking poles then you do not know what you have been missing all the time. This is a feature I have in my Osprey’s pack and I use it a lot.
This system includes a loop on the left-side on the bottom of the pack, paired with a bungee tie-off on the left shoulder strap. With this you can attach poles on the go, useful when you want to take photos on the go, or when you want to drink or eat on the go, or if you need free hands for some scramble, see it in the picture:
It may not be completely clear how to use it, so this is shown in the picture below for some other pack from the same brand:
But this is not all; you also have dual bottom compression straps on the Talon Velocity 30 pack, see the picture below. This may be a valuable detail if you plan to carry some extra gear attached to the pack. So my + here has a substantial value.
Price: As of the moment of writing this text, the Velocity pack is slightly less expensive. This may change in time, and the difference is also not substantial, so this + has no much weight here. If you like the pack, you will ignore it.
To conclude this Osprey Talon Velocity 30 vs Osprey Talon Pro 30 Packs comparison by stressing that not all rating criteria given above have the same importance and value.
The Velocity 30 pack’s main advantage is in the volume/weight ratio, pockets (particularly those on the harness), and Stow-on-the-Go attachment system, plus the bottom straps. So if you do not mind its top closure design, then this is definitely a better pack for you.
Thank you for reading. Do let me know what you think and if you have questions, there is a comment box below.
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