Teenage Engineering Field System Accessories Review

so basically i flipped all my gear except for anything TE or monome. and i generally tend to try out any release by either company. this week TE dropped a bunch of bags in their field series line. i ordered all of it, and it arrived today. here’s what i thought of everything:

  • field backpack… its tiny! not as tiny as the tx-6 but as far as a backpack goes, its way smaller than i thought it would be. i guess if you need a small day pack kind of thing it could be something to get? but at €250 its not a keeper for me. i guess if someone gave me one i’d maybe use it once a year or something? i’m sure people with different backpack habits could use this thing. but i wouldn’t even really be able to fit my laptop in it, and i have a macbook air. the pad to sit on might cover half of my butt on the ground. i don’t think i’d ever in my life try to sit on it unironically. i’ve seen other backpacks have a pad to sit on, its a cool thing to have with you for sure. but this one felt pretty useless, though i’m not a tiny swede (i’m a big swede). the pockets inside to hold the op-1 and such felt really thin. the straps didn’t seem to feel very soft or nice to wear. this one is going back… (pack).

  • field waist bag… this was one of the better designs of the release. and i hate to be someone complaining about TE’s pricing, but damn, €120 or €130 or whatever it is, that’s just not worth it. i could totally see myself stuffing it with some cables when going to a gig, or throwing the tx-6 in there with some other stuff kind of. but that’s it, i guess i don’t wear a real waist bag on a daily basis (or yearly basis, or lifetime basis for that matter). but if you’re into waist bags, this one is cool enough. its small, and i guess that’s maybe a plus for waist bags? i don’t know. the whole design language of the textile department of TE is kind of not that good in real life. like maybe it looks all cool and stuff when you draw it up on an ipad in the design stage. but once the actual physical item is in front of you, all the criss-crossing velcro and extra straps and loops and whatever- it just doesn’t add up to any real world use case in my life. plus all the tolerances on the pockets are just so tight all the time, i don’t really get it. nicer to look at than to use. i’d keep this waist bag if i had €120 that i literally couldn’t think of anything else in the world to spend it on. but sadly my imagination is better than that so i’m returning this one.

  • field ob-4 shoulder bag… i really loved the mesh bags they initially released for the ob-4. i have the green one and its great. i could see this bag being an alternative to the mesh bag is you don’t have that one already. but again there’s some kind of random design choices, like there’s extra velcro strips on the top and bottom to secure the front panel and the top closure back for when you want to jam out with the ob-4 without taking it out of the bag. but in practical reality actually securing the opening flaps with the extra velcro seemed more theoretical than realistic. the tolerances are just so tight, i don’t get it. there was also some stitching fraying on the velcro strips right out of the box. and damn, for €125 i really don’t want to have to take the time to be sewing the velcro back on again in a few weeks, months… days? but yeah, sure, if you don’t have a bag for your ob-4 i guess you could consider this. though i think the mesh ones are still for sale.

  • field medium op-z bag… its the op-z version of the op-1 field bag. and while the op-1 field bag was way too tight for my op-1 field, and the design of it was dumb considering how you have to put the op-1 in the bag, i like this bag style for my op-z. this one i’m keeping. though i’m doubtful i’ll ever try to stuff a cable in the outer pocket. i might be able to throw the knob accessory kit into there, i do like to use those and no way you’re putting the z in this bag with them attached. this bag feels like i can put my z in there and then throw the z in my (regular big sized and non-field) backpack and not worry about it getting squooshed.

  • field bottle bag… this bag felt overengineered while at the same time not useful. again its just straps and loops and velcro and tiny no tolerance pockets and now also a draw string closure on the top to get at the water bottle. i wanted it to be cool and fun, like something i never used before but now its suddenly appealing to just grab a bag that’s only made to hold a water bottle and run out the door with nothing else except my water bottle and then when i want to uh carry something heavy or perhaps eat some ice cream the bottle can hang on my shoulder from its strap so my hands can be free? but maybe i should keep it and then i can stack 6-8 of my ortho remotes into the bag, that would probably be about the same shape and size as the water bottle i guess. then i could eat ice cream while carrying my orthos and nothing else?

  • field bottle… it might not seem like it, but i actually wanted all of this stuff to be cool enough to keep. for example, i don’t have a water bottle in my life right now and i’ve been casually looking for one. so when this was part of the release i was like sweet, now maybe this can be my water bottle. but its small. and then its just like a completely random kind of cheap metal water bottle that’s not big enough with TE branding on it. and i’m just not enough of a fanboy to get to this level of TE being a lifestyle brand, at least not in my life, to justify having a logo on a bottle in order to keep and use the bottle. i freely admit i’m a huge fanboy, i bought 3 of the record cutters they just put out. i have 3 z’s and 4 op-1’s. and all their modular stuff, all the IKEA frekvens collab lights and tripods and accessory kits. but i have all those things because they actually work good. this water bottle didn’t seem to work any better than any other water bottle i can walk out and instantly buy anywhere around me. i was actually kind of shocked at its (low) quality, but that’s also because i was hyped about it being awesome before it arrived.

  • field accordion bag… i was excited about this one before it arrived, and its the second thing from this drop that i’m going to keep! i think its cool, i will totally use it. i won’t use it enough to get a second one. but for sure i’ll throw the tx-6 in there with a ton of cables. or then just use it as a little cable bag. by the way, this bag is tiny as well. it fits the tx-6 perfectly its that small. and even though its that small its got 3 (!!!) loops and one external pocket as well. though this external pocket doesn’t have a tiny strip of velcro holding it closed like all the rest of the product line. and guess what- this pocket has a tiny bit more room to open up to put something in it! though i guess whatever you put in it might fall out since there’s no velcro to keep it shut. anyway, this was a cool little bag. €75 cool? hell no! that’s insane. but i’m a fanboy, i’m keeping it. €75 ugh. i shouldn’t have typed that. it hurts!

  • field notebook… don’t buy this. i did and i’m returning it. first of all it arrived all squooshed with a kind of bend in the middle of it. and its so cheap and flimsy that it won’t lay flat now. but its literally a notebook that you would get from your bank or insurance company along with a little calendar at christmas time. i was kind of hyped for it, i thought maybe inside there could be some pocket operator patterns printed, or some different kinds of graphs and charts to fill out. instead there’s some pretentious advice printed on the inside cover and then the rest of the pages have grids on them. all the same for the whole book. its tiny, its cheap, it seems like one of those ideas when you’re in the meeting and you’re jamming out ideas and you got the whiteboard there and its covered in all sorts of items. and the group leader says, come on, what else do you need in the field?? and you’re like oh i got one, how about a field notebook, that could be a fun little accessory to round out the line, it could go in one of the flimsy pockets of the backpack! but damn, make a good notebook!!! i could for real use a good notebook. i felt embarrassed i’d ordered this notebook once i saw it.

  • field keychain carabiner… i didn’t order this separately, but it comes with the backpack. i thought it looked cheap. the carabiner was fine, i do circus so i know a good carabiner when i see one. this one was ok, not great. the keyring looked really cheap. overall i didn’t need to order one separately after returning the backpack. its just random, not good.

  • field tote bag… i really wanted this to work as well. but its tiny! i don’t know what i would put in it. i can’t take it to the store for a few groceries. i guess i could put the water bottle in the water bottle bag inside this bag. i don’t know. the straps were super long and the bag was small. not something that fit into how i carry things around in my personal life. if you’re looking for a small bag with long straps, you’re gonna love this.

i didn’t get the patches or the keyring bottle opener or the sweatshirt or the t-shirt. i really really hope they come out with some more hardware in the field line. the op-1 field and the tx-6 are awesome! i love my ob-4! and as well i got all the new audio cables when they came out and they are super good!!! and i’ve always loved TE accessories over the years, especially all the fun stuff they came out with for the original op-1, the bender and whatever all else. but since TE got this textile department thing going on its been pretty thin on delivering anything i want to keep. the ob-4 mesh bag is great. but the splash pocket stuff and the soft cases… i don’t know, i think its just hard because the op-1f, op-z, and tx-6 are all just so well designed and i have such a great user experience with them. so then whatever accessory you associate with such high design, it has a lot to live up to. like if you had a random synth that was kind of ok, nothing great, then a lot of these new bags would blend right in. you wouldn’t notice as much that they aren’t really that great or special. so its kind of a double edged sword that they’ve managed to make some designs that are so amazing, because then its harder for them to do anything less maybe. like the pocket operators are so so great and fun! and this field notebook made me never want to have fun ever again.


give us a pocket operator field!!!

edit: thanks for the breakdown, it’d be cool if t.e. was good at this…who else makes soft gear bags, canon??

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teenage engineering is so fucking weird

feels like there’s some incongruity between their most popular products (op1,opz,pocket operators,tx6) and all the lifestyle stuff they’re selling

the op1,opz,tx6 are all tiny footprint, many-function (almost “all-in-one”), expensive. pocket operators are tiny footprint, specific function, cheap. they are all unique and innovative

their lifestyle stuff is very specific in purpose, expensive, and don’t have much interesting improvement over the generic equivalents from what I can see. the lifestyle they seem to be selling, esp with this field line, is “portability, go out into the world to explore and make music”. but, all the stuff you’re supposed to be exploring the world with is a pristine, clinical white


Thanks, instant juggler! This is really useful for me as I have some of these bags in my cart but am now vacillating about the purchase.

Is the accordion bag a good fit for a few pocket operators do you think?

i checked the measurements and the new elektron cases for model series are perfect width to carry an op1

i’d been looking for a travel case and usually use a discontinued korg nano case (that seems to fit everything i use…i sadly only have one of em tho)


i just tried to put some pocket operators into the accordion bag-

first of all, the fit is super tight, like to the point where i’m slightly concerned that the bag presses into the PO knobs too hard. then, the height of the PO sticks out of the top slightly, even without the hang tab attached. that’s not really such a problem with the way the bag closes, its not tight on the top of the opening. however, i don’t think there’s any way i could get more than 1 PO in the bag at a time. putting one in one of the compartments makes it bulge out into the next compartment if that makes sense. so then the second compartment is about 2/3 as big as normal.

the tx-6 does fit into the middle compartment perfectly and is easy to take in and out. however, in checking this i did notice one thing- because of the way the top of the bag closes, if you don’t have all 3 compartments completely full then the top is very loose. the top can be tight when either there’s nothing (or just 1 or 2 cables) in each compartment or then if each compartment is completely full. its because of the placement of the 2 velcro strips to close it, this leaves only the empty or full option for the bag. if you fill only 2 of the compartments and the third is empty then the top is quite loose.

and after sleeping on it and then testing the bag out again this morning… there’s no way i’m keeping it at €75, that’s just crazy.

another thought is that you know i’d just totally love to throw all my TE gear into my TE bags and hit the road in my TE car or skateboard and go to the TE hotel or whatever. it would be so fun to see their integration of design spread out across the world. but i kind of hate this whole ethos of providing potential options that seem meaningful but that in the end i have to totally invent myself. for example, the velcro rings on the bottom of the op-1f. yes, i don’t have to use them, and they are there if i need them.

and i’m not so stupid that i can’t imagine sticking some velcro to the top of my piano so that when i sit the op-1f there it will stick in place. but. i’ve never actually needed to do that in my life? and i gig out and about with my op, in all kinds of situations. the need to velcro it down is all just theoretical so far. and it forces me to be pretty creative to find a use case where it goes beyond proof of concept.

like i wish if the velcro rings weren’t just an afterthought, that whichever designer came up with it could give me 3 examples of where i’d be happy to have the velcro there. i know the OG-1 had the screw holes in the bottom, and i actually use those sometimes, but guess what- i use them for example when i have my OG’s in the triple stand that TE designed. and i loved the hardware they sold waaaaaay back in the day, the modular light stand, that you could then use as a stand for the op-1. but i didn’t have to dream up how to potentially use the screw holes myself.

its the same with all the loops and straps and folds of the new bags. yes, i see i can potentially strap this bag to something else about 10 different ways… and as a creative exercise i could walk through that process. i’ve yet to see any reason to take the energy to go through that process. it kind of feels like one of two options. either the straps are there purely for aesthetic effect, or then the design idea was like hey let’s add a strap, who knows what will happen, could be cool!?! and i find both of those options kind of annoying.


Thanks so much, instantjuggler! After checking the accordion dimensions again, I’m actually surprised even one PO fits in, given the height.

it’s a bit of a pity these bags seem to cater for all of the portable TE gear except the pocket operators!

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Got the t-shirt. Love it. Wearing it today.

Got the keyring. Love that one, too. Hefty and present in its weight.

Got the notebook. That one, I don’t like quite as much. It’s not bad. It’s just not all that special :slight_smile:


Feels the overriding theme with the bags is all the dimensions are ever so slightly wonky. Could it be TE accidentally bought a container-full of counterfeits of their own gear? :thinking:


I ordered the field waist bag despite the poor review as the dimensions on t(e website implied it would just fit some pocket operators.

Initial impressions are very good — it has three interior pockets that each would nicely fit a pocket operator and a fourth interior velcro pocket that is more Ortho remote size. On the outside, there’s a horizontal and vertical velcro pocket at the front which might fit some audio cords and a field notebook, for instance. The back has a small pouch like the small change pocket on 5-pocket jeans. The waist strap can be taken off (although the aluminium hardware can’t).

Overall, for someone a bit obsessive who doesn’t mind the cost, it is a good way of taking some POs and extras in a smart bag that complements the TX-6, OP-Z and OP-1 field bags.

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