I have used three different brand of panniers since 1986. Initially, I bought some panniers because of the low price. I used them about one season. I did not like the quality, or the utility or the wearability. They tore, ripped, etc. very quickly.
I then purchased some better panniers sold by Cannondale and used them for almost 15 years, until I wore too many holes in them.
About five years ago, I purchased some Arkel Panniers. I really like them. They are a quality product.
Someone has mentioned the Ortleib product. I agree that they have a great product. I have one of their bags that I use with my BOB trailer. My sister loves hers. I just like lots of pockets so that I have everything in it's own pocket, etc.
I would not recommend that you run out and by the Arkels anymore than I would recommend that someone buy the most expensive bike they can afford, until they know that they will make use of the bike and its panniers.
This message was edited by tgpelz on 5-30-08 @ 6:56 PM