I have a SMD Trailstar for winter or when I think I may need to haul a lot of food and/or water, otherwise I find the ULA Conduit(now called the CDT) perfect.
I can carry three days worth of food and 2 liters of water and still have room to squash more stuff in if I had to.
It didn't take me long to adjust to the Conduit.
Some people like the pockets on your pack, but I agree that they waste space and add weight.
I do like the mesh pocket on the ULA and other packs, really useful for drying wet gear and for easy access items.