The GG Blaze 60 weighs 1.4 kg (49.3 oz.)
The GG Crown 60 weighs 970 g (34.2 oz)
This is for men's regular size, for both models. I based the sizing on my earlier Vapor Trail, and also trying on the Blaze at a local outdoor store.
The pockets on the Blaze are definitely bigger, and I prefer the side pockets on the Blaze (on the Crown my tall water bottle lops to one side unless I secure it with the compression cord), but the size of the front pocket are the same width on both models, with the Blaze's pocket just being taller. They stretch quite a bit so, Mike, I don't think you'd have trouble with getting your 2 liter Platy and rain jacket into the Crown's pocket. I was testing the pack earlier this morning and slipped in my Solomid with all pegs, polycro ground sheet, and pole jacks. It fit no problem, not even needing effort to slip it in. The entire package fit inside, with no sticking out at the top.
The adjustable torso length on the Blaze actually was useful. The clips that fit into the frame sheet fit into small slots that run up and down the length of the frame sheet and you can raise or lower the pack straps according to the length of your back. I had to raise them up two notches to better fit my longer torso because the pack, as it came from the store was fitted to smaller Japanese torsos. It fits perfectly now. It's an effective and very simple system, with no added and unnecessary weight that you often find with adjustable systems. However, unlike the Crown, you can't remove the frame sheet, because the frame sheet is necessary for attaching the straps. The Crown just happens to fit me perfectly, but I can see why it might be an issue with people in between or over sizes. On that score the Blaze might be a better choice for people who need something they can adjust to their size.
The frame sheet on the Blaze is thicker, heavier, and stiffer than that of the Crown. It very much acts as stiff aluminum stays might. It therefore allows you to carry heavier loads. The pack straps attaching directly to this frame makes sense for load transfer. The frame sheet on the Crown is more flexible and lighter. It can also be removed, and thus make the pack even lighter, while the Blaze's frame cannot be removed.
The fabric is the same on both models. Very tough, somewhat stiff, and definitely more durable than the material on the original Vapor Trail. I'd say this pack is at least as durable as, say, a GoLite Jam, perhaps more.
I prefer the closure at the top of the Crown, too. Much simpler, with no excess fabric when the load isn't full, one thing I never liked about the original VT, and I'm not thrilled about on the Blaze. Also, the Blaze, like the original VT, has a separate back pad, with a space behind it (where I like putting my sketchbook). There is also a mesh cover over the back pad. The Crown back pad is sewn directly to the pack and is exposed, with no mesh cover. Another place where GG made the pack lighter.
It is not "just a pack". Not just a fabric tube with straps. These two designs took lots of thinking and testing and sewing skills to put together. You can see where Cruickshank listened to what users have said over the years about the VT and corrected the problems. As a designer myself (architect and now illustrator) who has tried his hand at making tents, backpacks, and sleeping bags, I can attest to just how difficult it is to come up with a design that not only works, but actually catches people's attention and sells well, PLUS becomes something experienced users come to rely on. If packs were simply "just packs", anything would do and no one would complain about one or the other pack. It's getting that little thing right... the shape and stiffness of the shoulder strap, the size and form of the pack body, the way the load carries, the materials... all contribute to the way a pack is perceived and used. Few get all parts right. Just witness the difference between the original Mountainsmith Ghost and the new joke. The pack hasn't even come out yet, and already it is getting awful reviews.