Tactical Gearhead Review: RFID Blocking Passport Pouch

“While technology makes our lives easier nowadays, there is always the chance that it can be used by individuals that want to take advantage of it and those using it. As of 2006, the U.S. government required all new passports to be outfitted with RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) chips. While these chips store information that allows for better screening of travelers it also opens up the possibility that technology savvy criminals/terrorists can remotely steal your information and use it to their benefit. RFID chips are also in mobile phones and in some credit/debit cards, which means that your financial information is at risk too.

The RFID Blocking Passport Pouch allows the user to rest easy whenever traveling with small items that use RFIDs to store sensitive information. The outer fabric is lightweight tough Dyneema, the world’s strongest fabric, which is 15 times stronger than steel. It is waterproof, heat resistant, UV resistant, and it floats!”

Read the full review at Tactical Gearhead.

TOM BIHN RFID Blocking Passport Pouch

TUAW on the Synapse 25: “It’s the road traveler’s best friend.”

TUAW reviews the Synapse 25

“Tom Bihn’s Synapse 25 backpack taught me an important lesson over the month I spent testing it on numerous road trips. That lesson? Stop buying cheap backpacks. Investing a little extra money right now can save you time packing, unpacking, and getting through airport security in the future. Say hello to the Synapse 25 backpack, the road traveler’s best friend.”

Read the full review by John-Michael Bond over at TUAW. See also: the Synapse 25.

Video: One Woman’s Minimalist / Ultralight Synapse Packing List

Video by Allison Levine of Off The Blueprint. Read her detailed packing list and advice here and/or discuss the video with Allison in the Forums. See also: the Synapse 19.

shawnblanc: Patrick Welker’s Sweet Mac Setup

Patrick Welker’s Sweet Mac Setup

Shawn Blanc interviews Patrick Welker, a freelance graphic and web designer living in Germany, about his setup — everything from office chairs to Macs to water filters — and why he uses what he does to get his work done.

Of his bag — the Ristretto for 11″ MacBook Air — Patrick says:
“When I’m on the road I use a messenger bag to carry my MacBook and iPad. I choose to go with the Ristretto from Tom Bihn despite the high shipping costs and customs tax that are due when importing something from the United States. The bag is equipped with the fantastic Absolute Shoulder Strap and a lot of their nifty pouches and leashes. Ninety percent of the times when I leave the house I travel with my bike, and due to Tom Bihn’s Guardian Dual Function Light I feel a lot safer when riding in the dark.”

Patrick Welker’s Sweet Mac Setup

Above? Patrick’s health appliances. He explains: “When you live and work all day long within a tight space and share it with another person, my belief is that the room you choose needs to have a feel good atmosphere. Moreover, if it is a home office you have the permission to go nuts. To conclude, for me this means transforming my workspace into a whimsical little world with a touch of kawaii.”

Read the full interview with Patrick Welker over at Shawn Blanc’s blog.

See also:
RocketINK (Patrick’s blog)
The Ristretto for 11″ MacBook Air.

Legal Nomads: World Travel Resources

Legal Nomads World Travel Resources

Jodi Ettenberg quit her job in 2008 to travel the world. Five years later, she’s still traveling, and has compiled a list of the top tips, tricks and resources she’s learned in that time. That’s everything from advice on pre-trip planning and insurance to what clothing to take to bags. Jodi’s bag? The Synapse 19. Of it, she says: “I went through a slew of different daypack options over my 5 years of travel but have ended up with a 19L Synapse bag from Tom Bihn. It’s small but holds more than you would think, it is really well built and they even have a safety whistle on the sternum strap. Friends recommended them heartily and I tried them out only in 2012, but I’m very happy with my purchase.”

More: World Travel Resources @ Legal Nomads

Legal Nomads World Travel ResourcesThe Synapse 19 backpack.

Everyday Commentary on the Synapse 25

“The short summary of this review is simple: this is the benchmark backpack on the market today…. The Synapse 25 is the perfect backpack.”

Read the full review (with many great photos) at Everyday Commentary.

Everyday Commentary reviews the Synapse 25 backpack

Every Day Commentary on the Synapse 25

The Alien Pebble: Tom Bihn’s Brain Bag Survives Law School

“So far I have told you about the immediately measurable attributes of the Brain Bag such as size/volume, simplicity in design and the ability to get a straight black colored Brain Bag. However, the durability element had really been speculation based on reviews I read on the internet, and based on supposed typical use of the backpack. After over three years of being put through-the-ringer, I can confidently say that the durability of the Brain bag is superb. It has survived LSAT prep, numerous trips (usually the only thing I take when I travel), and most importantly 3 years of law school. It has withstood the attempted destruction of con-law textbooks and saved me the ire of being the full-blown-travel-luggage toting law student.”

Read the full review at the Alien Pebble (many great photos). See also: the Brain Bag.

Tom Bihn's Brain Bag Survives Law School and More

autolycus on the Smart Alec and its Modular Pockets

autolycus on the Smart Alec and its Modular Pockets

“I’ll add a couple of other notes about the lower modular pocket that might not be obvious from these photos: First, even on the dyneema version, the bottom and “back”–the side that is against the Smart Alec–are black cordura to match the pattern of the Smart Alec itself. Second, there is a small pocket against the “back”, mirroring the inside pouch of the Smart Alec. Nice design touches to have the lower modular pocket mirror the main bag in such a way.”

Read the full post by autolycus in the Forums. See also: the Smart Alec and Smart Alec Modular Pockets & Straps.

Tactical Gearhead Reviews the Travel Tray

Tactical Gearhead reviews the Travel Tray

“Also made from super-tough Dyneema fabric, the Travel Tray is a great accessory to use when removing items from your pockets while on a plane, in a car, or at the end of the day when collapsing in your hotel room.”

Read the full review at Tactical Gearhead.

Backcountry Treks: A Bag to Travel the World (Synapse 25)

Justin Lukasavige of Backcountry Treks reviews the Synapse 25:

“In the video above I traveled to Seattle for a three day trip, packing everything (including laptop) in only one bag. This summer I’ll be traveling throughout Asia and again, only bringing the Synapse 25.”