LINK: UDG Urbanite Range
Large FlightBag: £124.99 / €139.95 / $139.95
Extra Large FlightBag: £134.99 / €159.95 / $159.95
Extra Large Sleeve: £99.99 / €119.95 / $119.95
DJing has changed beyond all recognition in the last decade. It used to be about cramming flight cases and crates into the back of a car or van. But now it can be down with a messenger bag and jumping on the bus. Thus the luggage needs have changed too. Rucksacks and their ilk are fine for smaller items like mixers or small controllers, but there’s no need to go full-on flight case for many of today’s controllers. That’s where the UDG Urbanite range comes in.
I was sent a range of the Urbanite models, the first of which we covered in this review. And now I have a few more, but rather than cover them all off individually, I’m putting the rest into this single review, where I’ll cover off the large FlightBag, extra large FlightBag, and extra large sleeve. That said, much of what was said in the original review holds true here.
To start with, let’s look at the differences between a sleeve and a FlightBag. The sleeve is more or less as it sounds — a single configurable compartment, constructed from the usual black nylon outer, heavy nylon straps and sturdy plastic zips. Flight bags however have additional pockets, an upgraded handle, a reinforced frame and rubber feet. The complete range of Urbanites is medium, large and extra-large sleeves and FlightBags.
As detailed above, the sleeve is just for transporting your controller, plus perhaps some other bits that you might be able to squeeze inside the bag. The insides are highly configurable and flexible via a series of foam strips that velcro into place. To find a sleeve to suit your controller, the UDG website features a “by device” tab. And once narrowed down, via an included leaflet, you get the configuration of strips to get your controller to fit safe and sound.
Consider the sleeve to be suitable for a single device, with perhaps cables shoved inside but nothing more. And don’t think for a minute that you can stack anything on them.
As discussed above the FlightBag is designed to be more sturdy and suitable for a little more of your DJ life to be squeezed in. The insides offer the same configurability as the sleeve, but come with several external pockets, and inside those are additional compartments for headphones, audio interfaces, and various odds and end that you might find useful when playing out.
About the name — I feel it’s quite the misnomer here. Firstly you can’t carry them onto a plane because they’re too big. And even with the greater reinforcement of the metal band, there’s no way I’d let a baggage handler throw this around. I’d say this is strictly for personal transport of your DJ gear, be it public transport or in your car. And while they’ll take a little more weight, I wouldn’t stack anything on them either, especially if you’ve got headphones in the inner pockets.
I’ve said this before — there’s only so much you can say about bags like this. And I’ve probably said all that there is to say three times over. The Urbanite Sleeves and FlightBags carry stuff well and in style. They’re not cheap, but among their peers they stack up well. You must remember that the larger bags will have a smaller market than ones for regular controllers, and with production costs being higher, the subsequent end cost goes up accordingly.
Ultimately however, consider a UDG Urbanite it a solid investment to keep your very expensive controller cosseted from the stresses and strains of the outside world. The first time you drop it or break a fader off, you’ll wish you’d bought one.