The Zomo is a lot better than just using a record bag reassigned for carrying DJ gear in. Worth putting on your shortlist if you’re after this type of bag and your kit doesn’t weigh in at too much and isn’t too large to fit into it.
First Impressions / Setting up
This bag looks like a record bag, pure and simple. If you’ve ever had a black 12″ bag, you’ll know the look – square, made out of either plastic, nylon or leather (this one is leather-look plastic), with a shoulder strap for carrying it around, and a handle on the top for moving it short distances.
The only extra pockets visible when it’s all closed up are two slim ones down each side – one zipped, the other open-topped.
Undoing the two heavy-duty poppers to unfasten the front flap reveals lots of pockets and options that standard record bags don’t have. On the front of the area thus revealed are a big zipped pocket, a small zipped pocket, and a medium-sized velcro pocket – useful for headphones, wallet and leads respectively. There’s also a name tag window.
There are two main compartments. They’re individually padded, though not massively so – they certainly don’t offer as much protection as the Lil Namba Remix that we reviewed last week, for instance.
You wouldn’t want to throw the bag around with kit in it, but I’d be confident carrying a controller and laptop in there in normal use.
You can comfortably fit a 15″ laptop and controllers like the Reloop Mixage or the Novation Twitch, but anything bigger won’t fit. (Obviously, if you’re a DVS DJ, your control vinyl and audio interface will fit fine in there fine, as will things like the Novation Launchpad).
One good thing about a dedicated bag like this is that it’s designed with enough pockets and compartments.
I managed to easily fit a whole DJ set-up in there – a compartment each for the laptop and controller, and room for ‘phones, leads, wallet, sunglasses etc. But you’ll need compact gear – a small laptop, portable headphones, a smaller controller and not too many accessories. Otherwise, you’re going to be squashing stuff in, and it’ll be a beast to carry.
As it is, the strap is good enough, having a large (detachable) padded part that you can position where you want (indeed, the whole strap is detachable). Throw in over my shoulder on my bike, I have to admit it felt a bit “cooler” than making the same journey with a backpack on, but by the time I got to the venue, I was pleased to take it off.
Getting gear in and out of it is easy because when it’s opened, you can just unzip everything and slide things stuff in and out. However, I’d had liked to have seen some more sturdy feet underneath it.
It would be fine for carrying in hand luggage on planes unless you really packed it of course – being a soft bag you could in theory pack it bigger than airlines allow. I certainly wouldn’t trust putting it in the hold.
The thing with messenger bags is that they don’t like being loaded with lots of gear. They lose their shape, the protection they offer decreases, and they’re hard to carry. Of course, you know all this and if you still want one, you’re prepared to make the compromise because of the aforementioned backpack image thing.
In that case, the Zomo is a lot better than just using a record bag reassigned for carrying DJ gear in. Obviously, if it were in real leather it would be more luxurious (and a lot more expensive to boot), but as it is it looks pretty smart in black with silver metal zips and loops.
Worth putting on your shortlist if you’re after this type of bag and your kit doesn’t weigh in at too much and isn’t too large to fit into it.