db duplex duffel luggage backpack leaning against wheel of a car
(Photo/Mary Murphy)

The Ultimate Travel Bag? Db Duplex Split Duffle Review

Looking for a perfect, durable, do-all duffel that offers versatility in both packing and ways to carry? The Db Duplex Duffle may be it.

Db is a Norwegian brand founded by a skier-turned-influencer. The brand used to make only ski bags and boot bags but recently expanded its repertoire. It now makes camera bags, briefcases, and duffels — lots of duffels.

We tested the Db Duplex Duffle ($259), a 50L duffel bag that uniquely splits into two main compartments, making it really versatile and travel-friendly. It’s also packed with a few more cool features. It’s worth noting the Duplex comes in 50L-90L sizes ($259-299).

In short: On the outside, this duffel is durable, sleek, and compact. But on the inside, it expands to a versatile, perfect-packing wonder. That’s thanks to the butterflied split compartments (both zippered), one mesh-backed and one fabric-backed, leaving room for a third flat mesh zippered compartment in the middle.

Top off this duffel with an internal and external pocket, and it’s got more going for it in terms of organization than most.

Db Duplex Duffle: Put to the Travel Test

db 50L duffle backpack on a row of seats on a train

As a GearJunkie staff member of over 2 years, I’ve had no shortage of opportunities to get outside — and to travel. Frequently, I’ll find myself toggling between brand picnic previews and mountain bike rides, between skiing and packrafting, between outdoor hikes and virtual workouts. But what about the gear that gets us there?

A duffel that can pack in all my gear for the task at hand is the No. 1 essential. And while there are dozens of duffels for gear-hauling that we’ve tested and loved, there are none quite as unique (and organized) as this one.

I’ve used the Duplex duffel on several occasions now, including local overnight trips in-state, road trips, and work trips. I’ve also carried it everywhere from cars to trains, subways, and planes.

Construction and Features

Right off the bat, you can tell the Db Duplex duffel was built for travel by its exterior features: a super-strong, 850-denier, carbonate-coated exterior fabric; backpack straps; two grab handles; daisy-chain webbing loops; metal fasteners; a magnetic one-handed sternum strap; and more.

The straps adjust to carry comfortably — whether you’re hauling 20 pounds of stuff or 40. (The height and width of the sternum strap adjust too.)

But my first realization of happiness and best takeaway with testing the Db Duplex Duffle wasn’t any one of its features — but the comfort of the whole bag itself. The split compartment makes it easier to organize and pack, and also easier to balance out the weight. And the back panel of the duffel is comfortable; I didn’t even notice the zipper was there.

Lastly, let’s not overlook the flat mesh compartment (store dirty clothes, lay a dress shirt flat, etc.) that was slyly added between the two halves.

two main compartments with zippered pockets inside the split Db duffel bag
An interior grab handle and a view of the duffel’s compartments; (photo/Mary Murphy)

Packing List

To give an idea of what the duffel can hold, here’s my packing list from a recent 4-day trip:

Db Duffel Review: Final Notes

Compared to older models of Db bags, the new Duplex Duffle series is definitely at a higher level of versatility, and maybe even quality.

And the fact that this bag boasts 100% recycled fabrics didn’t seem to affect the performance. Our duffel got carried, shoved, stuffed, tossed, shuffled, knocked around during travel, and briefly rained on. And it held up.

Drawbacks, you ask? We wish the backpack straps were detachable for a more streamlined duffel carry when you want it. Also, it’s more expensive than a standard, one-compartment, toss-and-go duffel. But the extra organizational design features and burly, worry-free construction is what you’re paying for.

Maybe it’s a duffel, maybe it’s a travel backpack. Either way, it’s great. Now I can rest easy knowing that whether it’s a weekend trip or something longer, the Db Duplex will be a sturdy companion by my side.

Check Price at MoosejawRead More at Db

db duffle campervan bags
Two models of Db duffel bags side by side; (photo/Mary Murphy)
packing travel backpack
How to Pack for Domestic Adventure Travel: Your Checklist
Whether you’re road-tripping from coast to coast, experimenting with van life, or flying to a new U.S. region for an adventure or race, here’s a basic checklist before you go. Read more…

gocamp peer-to-peer campervan rental service
Renting Out Your Van, Trailer, or RV: Big Money or Big Pain?
Did you realize that your Airstream could be netting you $40,000 a year? Peer-to-peer RV rental companies promise just that, and the competition to become the Airbnb of RVs is red-hot. Read more…

Mary Murphy
By

Mary Murphy is the Managing Editor of GearJunkie and serves as the leader of Lola Digital Media’s DEI Committee.

She has been writing about hiking, running, climbing, camping, skiing, and more for seven years, and has been on staff at GearJunkie since 2019. Prior to that, Mary wrote for 5280 Magazine in Denver while working as an outdoor instructor teaching climbing, kayaking, paddleboarding, and mountain biking at Avid4Adventure. Based in Denver, Colorado, Murphy is an avid hiker, runner, backpacker, skier, yogi, and pack-paddleboarder.