I looked at both and agree it is a very close call and very personal decision based on comfort. I went with the Meridian because I like the panel access, the 8 oz less weight, and I actually like the compression straps and side pockets on the Meridian (the straps going over, rather than through the pocket being the only complaint I have read about the Meridian). Also, for me, I like having the load closer to my back. I realize that is warmer, but the great back pad on the Meridian solves this and it also doubles as a great place to put my feet when sleeping.
That being said, I don't think you can go wrong either way. Pick the one you like best. With two very good packs, it is up to you and the individual features of the pack that you might prefer.