In-depth baby product reviews led by a Pediatrician

Deuter Kid Comfort Active SL Review

This high-quality, less expensive pack is comfortable for babies and parents with narrower builds but the storage is limited
Deuter Kid Comfort Active SL
Credit: Abriah Wofford
Best Value Award
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Price:   $250 List | Check Price at Amazon
Pros:  Easy on the wallet, fit for narrower builds, comfy for passengers and parents
Cons:  Very limited storage, canopy costs extra, no dedicated spot for a hydration bladder
Manufacturer:   Deuter
By Wendy Schmitz ⋅ Senior Review Editor  ⋅  May 13, 2021
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79
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#4 of 10
  • Parent Comfort - 30% 9
  • Storage - 20% 6
  • Child Comfort - 25% 9
  • Ease of Use - 25% 7

The Skinny

The Deuter Kid Comfort Active SL is a baby-carrying pack designed with women in mind, according to the manufacturer. This pack has narrower shoulder straps and pulls the passenger closer to the wearer for a more comfortable experience. Our female testers appreciated the design and felt it was superior over much of the competition. This pack also happens to be cozy for little ones with a padded seat but wide leg holes that lacked the bulk found in some of the competition. This pack lacks useful storage or enough pockets for longer adventures. However, the reasonable price and the design suitable for those with narrower frames may make the lack of storage something you can easily overlook if comfort and baby features are your main goals.

Compare to Similar Products

 
Awards Best Value Award Editors' Choice Award Top Pick Award  Best Value Award 
Price $250 List
$250 at Amazon
$300 List
$299.95 at Amazon
$330 List
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$340 List$200 List
$179.90 at Amazon
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Pros Easy on the wallet, fit for narrower builds, comfy for passengers and parentsComfy to wear and ride in, lots of storage, canopy and hydration pocketBest child comfort, custom fit possibilities, loads of storageVari-flex waistband, day pack, comfy for babyBudget-friendly, good storage
Cons Very limited storage, canopy costs extra, no dedicated spot for a hydration bladderHigher price, hard to adjust seat, may be too long for shorter torsosDoesn't fit all usersExpensive, harder to useLower quality, not very comfortable for parent or child
Bottom Line This high-quality, less expensive pack is comfortable for babies and parents with narrower builds but the storage is limitedComfortable pack with lots of storage, a canopy, and easy to use featuresSuper comfortable carrier for parents and children with lots of useful storageExpensive, high-end pack that is cozy for kids, but harder to useInexpensive option with good storage, but it isn't that comfortable to wear or ride in
Rating Categories Deuter Kid Comfort... Journey PerfectFIT... Osprey Poco Plus Deuter Kid Comfort Pro LuvdBaby Premium
Parent Comfort (30%)
9.0
8.0
8.0
8.0
6.0
Storage (20%)
6.0
10.0
7.0
8.0
7.0
Child Comfort (25%)
9.0
9.0
10.0
9.0
5.0
Ease Of Use (25%)
7.0
7.0
7.0
6.0
6.0
Specs Deuter Kid Comfort... Journey PerfectFIT... Osprey Poco Plus Deuter Kid Comfort Pro LuvdBaby Premium
Usage Ranges Min-Max: When child can sit upright independently - 48 lbs Min-Max: 16 lbs - 40 lbs Min-Max: 16 lbs - 40 lbs Min-Max: When child can sit upright independently - 40 lbs Min-Max: 16 lbs - 40 lbs
Max Pack Load 48 lbs 48.5 lbs 48.5 lbs 48 lbs lbs
Weight 6 lbs 7.4 lbs 7.9 lbs 8.5 lbs 6.4 lbs
BGL Folded/Flat Dimensions 16.5W" x 10"H x 31"L 16" W x 10" H x 31" L 15" W x 11" H x 30" L 16.4" W x 9.5" H x 34.8" L 14.7" W x 9.5" H x 28.5" L
Frame Aluminum Aluminum Aluminum Aluminum Aluminum
Fabric 210 denier polyamide fabric. Tear and abrasion resistant, watertight to 1500 mm Body: Poly 420D Small Back Stafford
Interior: 75D Poly x 140D Nylon Blend
Main: 210D Nylon Shadow Box
Accent: 400HD Nylon Packcloth
Bottom: 400HD Nylon Packcloth
210 denier polyamide fabric with strong ripstop threads and PU coating. Waterproof 600D & 300D Ripstop Polyester
Stirrups Yes Yes, adjustable Yes, adjustable Yes Yes
Canopy No Yes Yes Yes Yes
Hydration Bladder Compatible No Yes Yes No Yes
Included Accessories Journey Sunshade Mirror Daypack, Mirror Changing Pad, Rain Cover
Care Instructions Hand Wash Spot Clean Hand Wash Hand Wash Spot Clean

Our Analysis and Test Results

Hans Deuter began the Deuter company in 1898. At the time, they created mailbags for the Bavarian Royal Mail. By the early nineteen hundreds, they graduated to saddlebags and tents for the army. They went on to create the first nylon backpacks and were recognized by Germany as the leader in backpacks in 1970. Deuter consults with a variety of bikers and mountain experts to help design their current lineup of products. They've called the US home since 2010.

Performance Comparison



The Active SL offers a comfortable design for women and those with a...
The Active SL offers a comfortable design for women and those with a narrower build.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

Parent Comfort


The Comfort Active SL performed well in our tests for wearer comfort, with a score that rivaled most of the competition in this metric.


The shoulder straps on the Active SL are contoured and fit well...
The shoulder straps on the Active SL are contoured and fit well without the dread boob crushing and pressure on the sternum we've experienced on other packs. Could this be one of the designed-for-women features?
Credit: Abriah Wofford

The shoulder straps on this pack are closer together, and our smaller testers liked the contour of the shoulder straps. The male testers and those with wider backs thought it was less comfortable. The padding is good, but it places pressure too high up for our male testers' comfort. With the shoulder strap design and chest clip placement, this backpack doesn't squish boobs like some of the competition, nor does it place unnecessary pressure on the sternum.

The waistband on the Active SL is a pull forward adjustment that is...
The waistband on the Active SL is a pull forward adjustment that is more ergonomically correct and easier to do while hiking than the more traditional pull back motion.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

The waist strap is super easy to adjust with a buckle attached with a V-shape strap; this allows the pressure of the pack and baby weight to be distributed over a wider area with no tight or pinching spots. The padding is comfortable without being bulky and sat nicely on the hips of testers. It is narrower than the competition, but we assume this is part of the "made for women" schtick happening with this pack.

The torso adjustment on the Active SL is better adjusted before you...
The Velcro and loop adjustment of the torso length on the Active SL...

The torso adjusts well for height and has a range long enough for most wearers. It is more convoluted than some of the competition for adjusting, but the back padding ensures you'll be comfortable once you get it fitted.

Little ones are secure in the Active SL with a closer to the wearer...
Little ones are secure in the Active SL with a closer to the wearer design that keeps them feeling snug in the cockpit.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

Child Comfort


The Active SL is one with kid comfort in mind, coming in with an almost perfect comfort score.


Child comfort starts with a padded seat that supports little ones without adding bulk between the legs where it could chaff or grow uncomfortable. It is contoured with a shape that is wide under the rump and narrows at the legs. The shoulder straps are wide and height adjustable, offering a snug fit with useful padding that never pushes on the baby's face.

The shoulder straps of the child cockpit on the Active SL adjusts...
The Comfort Active SL is cozy for little ones with a padded seat...

The headrest is very well padded, and the padding extended around the top edge of the sidewalls, so little ones can nap to the side or fall somewhat forward with a pad to catch them. Our napping testers seemed comfortable, and their head was never in a position where there wasn't padding. The cover is removable for cleaning, which is nice given that drool and spit-up can and will happen when you have a baby on board.

The Active SL stirrups are adjustable for height and fit little feet...
The Active SL stirrups are adjustable for height and fit little feet well for comfort when riding.
Credit: Abriah Wofford
The stirrups are adjustable and place feet in a comfortable and maintainable position for passengers.

The Active is one of the easier backpacks in the review to use with...
The Active is one of the easier backpacks in the review to use with one of the highest scores for the metric.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

Ease of Use


The Comfort Active SL is relatively easy to use compared to the competition.


The kickstand on the Active SL is one of the widest and most stable...
The kickstand on the Active SL is one of the widest and most stable feeling stands in the group.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

The adjustments are comparatively easy to make on this pack, and you can make many of them on the go or as you hike wearing the pack. Some of the straps have the forward pull tightening like the waistband, and we appreciate this style for the increased ease of use over those that pull back and away from the body.

Most of the parent fit adjustment son the Active SL can be done...
Most of the parent fit adjustment son the Active SL can be done while hiking making it easy to keep comfortable even if shifting needs to happen while moving.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

The shoulder straps are easy to access for adjustments. We set it up on the first hike, and everything stayed in place and was comfortable for every trip after. The shoulder straps are a little stiff, but they stay in place once set, and we'll take stiff to set if it means long-term resistance to shifting. The torso length isn't easy to adjust with Velcro tabs; you have to slide through small slots to change. Testers recommend making torso adjustments before you hit the trail as it can take some trial and error to find the right fit, and the adjustments take time.

The child seat can be raised or lowered using the sliding buckle...
The child seat can be raised or lowered using the sliding buckle inside the cockpit of the Active SL.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

Some of the adjustments for the child's cockpit seat and shoulder straps are less friendly than those for the wearer, but they are manageable, and once you get your hands inside, the buckles aren't hard to operate. Once you have the seat in the right spot, it doesn't slip even under the weight of a wiggly baby. This pack scores well for on-the-go baby seat and cockpit adjustment with Velcro height adjustment that is easy to use and stays put. There is one pull strap per side for shoulder and waist adjustments.

While the Active SL's cockpit can be challenging to reach while...
While the Active SL's cockpit can be challenging to reach while wearing the pack, it isn't impossible and it creates a stable base for resting the pack for removal.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

The kickstand is a bit stiff and opens wide to creates a stable base; we were never worried during testing about an accidental closure. It was easy to open and close while wearing the pack, but it was harder for some testers to reach than the kickstand on some of the competition that was closer to the user.

The main storage pocket on the Active has a pull tight closure that...
The main storage pocket on the Active has a pull tight closure that isn't as secure as a zipper but the sides are mesh to help prevent any wet items from getting gross in the pack.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

Storage


The storage features on the Active SL are the real downside to this pack, resulting in a score that is only about average for the metric.


The pocket on the Active SL clips closed and up to help prevent...
The Active SL has a high stretchy mesh pocket that is somewhat small...

The main pocket (above left) on the pack sits low, and between the back legs of the kickstand, it is only accessible when the pack is off or by another adult when you wear it. It has a clip closure, and the sides have breathable mesh to avoid stowing wet gear in an enclosed space. It is a big open pocket with no internal organization, so you might have to move things around to find what you want. There is also a mesh pocket higher up (above right), but it is thin and larger items will not fit inside.

The Active SL waistband has a good size pocket that is easy to...
The Active SL waistband has a good size pocket that is easy to access and is big enough for an iPhone X but might be better suited to a granola bar and keys.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

The pack doesn't have any bottle or cup holders, and the waistband only has one pocket. It has a zipper and is large enough to fit an iPhone X, but just barely. It is probably better suited to a granola bar or car keys.

We like the larger waistband pocket on the Active SL but we wish...
We like the larger waistband pocket on the Active SL but we wish there was more than one or better storage overall.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

This pack doesn't come with a canopy, and while you can buy one as an accessory for a fee, it doesn't have a dedicated pocket to store it if you aren't using it. The main problem with this is there aren't many pockets, to begin with, so using one for a canopy or bladder will take up the limited area you have for other supplies.

Manufacturer Video



Wendy Schmitz