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  1. #1
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    Struggling to decide.

    I have been viewing the forum and the internet for the past few months in order to find the best protection and bag for my new MBP. I have decided from all of the reading that the Tom Bihn bags provide great protection and of outstanding quality. Since I am unable to really see the bags in person I am having a tough time deciding which bag will suit me best. I have narrowed my search down to the ID, Ego, and Empire builder. I have been leaning toward the ID but I am hesitant due to possible size problems. I am a current college student so I will be carrying a text book or two and a binder along with my computer, power supply and other various small school items (pencils, calculator, ipod, ect….). Is the ID going to suffice my needs? Any insights would be greatly taken!


    Getnerdy

  2. #2
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    I use my Ego as my college bag, and happily stuff a Brain Cell, a couple textbooks, water bottle, power supply, iPod, lab notebook, extra battery, and miscellaneous bits and pieces. Still room left over to throw in a paperback or lunch bag

    I had looked at the ID but it didn't fit the Brain Cell I needed (3S). So if you figure out the ID is a little too small, be assured the Ego will fit everything you want without looking like you're carrying a small car to class.

    (P.S. The optional seatbelt buckle is made of win and awesome. It's worth the ten bucks just for the smiles you'll get out of sitting there and opening and closing it over and over again.)
    Black/Crimson/Steel Ego, Crimson Brain Cell, Cocoa / Wasabi Large Café Bag, Indigo Tristar, Organizer Pouches and Packing Cubes!

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by getnerdy View Post
    I have been leaning toward the ID but I am hesitant due to possible size problems. I am a current college student so I will be carrying a text book or two and a binder along with my computer, power supply and other various small school items (pencils, calculator, ipod, ect….). Is the ID going to suffice my needs? Any insights would be greatly taken!


    Getnerdy
    I just took a couple quick pictures to give you some idea of the dimensions. I didn't take any time to figure out how to cram it full ;p If you'd like any other photos of the ID, just ask.





    I put a Zune MP3 player and my Ti-89 calc in the front pouch, some pens too, just to give you an idea. I'm sure you could cram any amount of "various school items" in there :P
    Three textbooks and a freudian slip in the main compartment.

    Sorry, I don't have a brain cell to shoot with it.


    edit: to be fair, I took another photo with a fourth textbook in the main compartment.
    Last edited by Patrick; 02-04-2008 at 08:55 PM.

  4. #4
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    Thanks for the pictures....

    Thank you for the pictures. They have helped a ton in trying to make a decision as to what bag I am going to go with (ID or ego). I know the ego is bigger by a few liters but it is hard to see exactly how much that room is. If anyone else has the ego they use for school and dont mind throwing some books in it and if you have it the brain cell, then snapping a few photos I would be more than grateful.

  5. #5
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    what about a tom bihn backpack? all those textbooks on one side of your body sounds pretty terrible, if you have to walk a couple miles in the course of a school day -- seems like a shoulder bag is better for work-life, when you don't trek so much. the smart alec is getting redesigned right now. similar volume to what you're looking at & takes a vertical brain cell. i tried it on in-person once & it was a bit too big for me (i'm 5'4") but generally seemed like a pretty standard-sized backpack, just very unique & streamlined. redesign will have a water bottle pocket, not sure what else new...

  6. #6
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    which MBP do you own? If it is the 17" (or even the 15.4" depending on what you need to carry) then I would look at the Brain Bag (it's HUGE @ 2200cu.in.) and the Super Ego. It would be hard for me to choose between those two if I was still in college. I completely love a backpack style bag and the BB is a very stylish and functional bag.

    And remember you cannot add more room after you buy it...better to have a bit more space and then develop the discipline to not put half your room into the back.

    But I have had the Super Ego on my wish list for a while and just as soon as the Rx expenses drop a bit I am gonna grab one. My laptop is an HP NX9420 17" display system and I have a HBC to go with.

    I can suggest that if your get a messenger or briefcase style bag spend the extra on the Absolute Shoulder Strap. Most comfy shoulder strap I ever used and worth 3x the price to my broken down old shoulders.

    All through college and beyond I used backpack style bags. So I still tend to gravitate to them. But I will not need to carry as much as the Brain Bag carries. The Super Ego is still be at something like 1680cu.in. and I no longer need to worry about carrying text books.

    Something else to consider is if your text books can be found in ebook format. If they can you could sure save a LOT of weight by buying those versions to complement the dead-tree editions. And the right ebook reader software will allow you to add margin notes.

    I would get the bag with the most room possible then you are covered no matter how much you need to carry that day. Hey you could get an Aeronaut and take everything with ya...I mean it does convert into a backpack of sorts.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by slinstar View Post
    all those textbooks on one side of your body sounds pretty terrible, if you have to walk a couple miles in the course of a school day -- seems like a shoulder bag is better for work-life, when you don't trek so much. the smart alec is getting redesigned right now. similar volume to what you're looking at & takes a vertical brain cell. i tried it on in-person once & it was a bit too big for me (i'm 5'4") but generally seemed like a pretty standard-sized backpack, just very unique & streamlined. redesign will have a water bottle pocket, not sure what else new...
    I feel obligated to mention that I seldom carry those textbooks anywhere ;P And when I do, it's only one at at time ;P

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by slinstar View Post
    what about a tom bihn backpack? all those textbooks on one side of your body sounds pretty terrible, if you have to walk a couple miles in the course of a school day -- seems like a shoulder bag is better for work-life, when you don't trek so much
    I was going to mention the backpack option also. It's all personal preference but if I were going to carry a laptop and just one book then I'd want the weight on squarely my back. But if shoulder or messenger style is what you're used to then that's fine too.

  9. #9
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    As you continue to work through your decision, do keep in mind that if you add a brain cell to the bag, it will take up the space of a good size text book (? The Living World in the photos) and the colored folders in the photos above. The brain cell is marvelous protection for your laptop (don't leave home without it) but it does take up a space greater than the dimensions of your laptop.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Patrick View Post
    I just took a couple quick pictures to give you some idea of the dimensions. I didn't take any time to figure out how to cram it full ;p If you'd like any
    Those are great pictures, Patrick! I linked to them on the blog.
    Current Carry: Skookum Dog Citizen Canine prototype, Founder's Briefcase (every day carry), Small Cafe Bag (every day carry), Shop Bags (groceries, extra random stuff), Aeronaut 45 (travel), Synapse 19 (day hikes), Smart Alec (longer day hikes), Skookum Dog Road Duffel (Medium) (travel), Clear Organizer Wallet, Travel Stuff Sacks, Organizer Cubes

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by getnerdy View Post
    Thank you for the pictures. They have helped a ton in trying to make a decision as to what bag I am going to go with (ID or ego). I know the ego is bigger by a few liters but it is hard to see exactly how much that room is. If anyone else has the ego they use for school and dont mind throwing some books in it and if you have it the brain cell, then snapping a few photos I would be more than grateful.
    Got you covered. I stuck a bunch of pictures on a page here:

    http://sethkinast.com/2008/02/05/tom...go-brain-cell/

    You can click on the small thumbnails to see big pictures. Hope these help ^_^

    I don't carry my bag on a shoulder briefcase-style. I find it much more comfortable to wear the strap diagonally across my chest and then ride the bag centered at the small of my back. It's more comfortable than a backpack for me, and I like the messenger look better.
    Black/Crimson/Steel Ego, Crimson Brain Cell, Cocoa / Wasabi Large Café Bag, Indigo Tristar, Organizer Pouches and Packing Cubes!

  12. #12
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    Cool Thanks for the feedback and pictures, I have made my purchase!

    SethKinast and Patrick thanks for the pictures I really do appreciate your time as well as the time taken by the other posters in this thread. I made my mind up and purchased a Ego with the braincell and the Horizontal Freudian Slip, I think it will best fit my needs. It has already shipped and I cant wait for it to arrive. Once again thank you for all of your help!

    Getnerdy


    PS.... SethKinast, I found it ironic to see what textbooks you stuffed in the Ego in the pictures you took. I am a biology major (graduate this year), so I can most definitely relate to the size and contents of the books!

  13. #13
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    Hope you like it
    Black/Crimson/Steel Ego, Crimson Brain Cell, Cocoa / Wasabi Large Café Bag, Indigo Tristar, Organizer Pouches and Packing Cubes!

  14. #14
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    random comment, if you are looking at one of the messenger bags, and you're walking or biking around town, or even grabbing the bus... anything but throwing the bag in the car... I recomend the Q-AM strap... but that's because I prefer having the bag tight to my back when dashing across steets like a maniac


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