Hard bags or soft bags? The question's been asked (and answered) before, but here's a quick summary:
Pros: easy access; lockable; typically waterproof
Cons: can injure your leg in a crash; Touratech/BMW can twist in a crash rendering the lid unattachable; heavy
Pros: survive all but the worst crashes; lightweight; inexpensive to purchase/replace
Cons: a floppy nightmare when unloaded or lightly loaded; more difficult to access; only lockable with a cable lock or alternative
My wealthy friends get Jesse Bags
for their GS and KTM Adventures.
Walter Colebatch -- a real RTW adventurer on a BMW G650X -- is so
sold on soft bags, he had a frame and bags designed to his specifications. http://www.adventure-spec.com/defaul...-panniers.html
Since my 700 came with mounts for Varios, I negotiated for Varios. When traveling off-pavement, I'll be sure to carry ROK straps in case of a bad crash. Friends have used ROK straps on Touratech, BMW, FJR, Concours -- everything but Jesses. Jesses don't seem to break!
If I was planning on low-speed crashes, I'd get Wolfman Expedition Dry Saddle Bags and Wolfman Side Racks.