So, I've spent approximately 8 nights/9 days worth of hiking with my Arc Blast now.
I find it very comfortable.
I treat the mesh kindly, as with all of my gear, and find it more than durable for my uses. - I have my shell gear, Steripen setup, fuel and PLB in the front mesh pocket...and that is it.
I don't notice any discomfort or imbalance from the spacing/mesh panel. I also have an Osprey Talon and another locally made trampoline style pack, so am used to this feeling anyways.
The hybrid material is ace too....very durable, and nice to work with.
I have found myself being more attentive to my packing style though...which is a good thing. I have reduced the number of dry bags down to 3...using the zpacks pack liner for my s/bag (zpacks -7 bag), spare clothes, mat (NeoAir) & pillow (OR UL Pillow). The top dry bag is Joe's large rectangular cuben fiber dry bag (still to arrive), however similar sized dry bag test runs allows me to put my ditty bag, food and condiments (zip locked), Eddie Bauer down jacket , and Evernew 600 with Starlyte set up quite easily....my Hexamid Solo stays in its own cuben dry bag for the sake of avoiding moisture getting through the rest of the bag. After all of this I still have some room to cinch up the side straps.
The reason why I thought it necessary to paint this picture is because the arched poles have a slight tendency to pull inwards at the top if I pack the bottom out and neglect to pack out the top.....causing the top to collapse in. This is expected though, and happens on packs...it's just more accentuated with the arched poles. This is easily remedied however, simply by packing my bag correctly in the first place!!
As for the load lifters...I have them on my pack, and find them a waste of time. I use them a lot on other packs that I have, but the UL nature of this pack and subsequent contents kinda renders the use of load lifters useless...for me that is.
I also grabbed a pair of both the shoulder pouches and hipbelt pouches...and I must say they finish the pack off really well. The shoulder pouches hold my GPS and sunnies etc., with the hipbelt pouches looking after snacks, gloves etc.
Really happy with this set up.
Although, I do reaaaally like the white. If anyone wants to swap for an Olive Drab (or work out a deal etc.) for a white let me know!! I know that is superficial, but hey, the white is sexy ;-)
Edit: I actually feel the pack sitting better on my hips, and there is nothing like a bit of breeze wafting through and over the mesh panel, cooling off my back....yep...I can feel it.