Farewell Buzz, Hello MCB and Aeronaut
I've had an Ego (Black/Steel/Olive-strap) and a Buzz (also Black/Steel/Olive) since 2008, and just picked up a Cocoa/Wasabi Medium Cafe Bag and a Forest/Steel Aeronaut which arrived tonight. I was hoping to get the smallest bag that would still fit a 13" Macbook Air on occasion, and despite the size listed on the site, I was having trouble finding anyone who had managed to fit one into an MCB. But sure enough, it just barely fits. Perfect for my needs.
The MCB fits easily inside the main compartment of the Ego with room to spare for when I'm lazy and don't want to move all my small items out of the MCB. I didn't think about this when ordering, but they both have Wasabi interior so they match when I place one inside the other: another bonus!
I won't have a chance to really use the Aeronaut until next month, but I'm already impressed. I was a bit befuddled by the internal snaps at first, looking for a way to move the dividers so I could expand the main compartment. But Tom Bihn is a few steps ahead of my conventional thinking. With the Aeronaut, you just unsnap the snaps and the dividers have enough extra fabric that they can be pushed all the way to the side, so there's nothing to roll or fold up and tuck out of the way. Yet when the snaps are in place, the extra fabric is well-contained. Very clever.
Sadly, between the MCB and the Ego, I no longer really have a use for my Buzz. Happily, it's going to my best friend, who has been looking for a small-ish bag that could hold a 15" MacBook and iPad. I showed him the Buzz, and he immediately said "I'll take it." It seems weird to say this about a bag, but I'm actually going to miss it. It far exceeded my expectations, and the little touches such as the corner pocket of the padded divider were both useful and showed the thought that Tom puts into his designs. My friend was especially impressed by this, having owned a bag in the past where the corner of his laptop actually wore a hole through the fabric!
After five years of ownership, the black paint has rubbed away on some parts of the zippers, but otherwise it's practically in new condition. Same goes for the Ego, which shows a bit of dirt/wear on some plastic pieces and zippers but otherwise looks just like it did on the day I got it. That sort of quality, combined with the well thought-out design, are what brought me back to Tom Bihn for this latest purchase and had me barely even consider other brands. So, thank you to Tom Bihn and everyone who works with him!