Reviews

Ineffable: Synapse 19? 25? The Struggle is Real!

As a longtime lurker in our forums, Ineffable noticed that one of the most frequently asked questions was: “Should I get the Synapse 19 or the Synapse 25?”

And after having ordered both Synapses and made his choice, Ineffable was kind enough to post a thorough comparison of the two sizes (with photos, just a couple of which are below). See Ineffable’s full post here.

Synapse 19 or Synapse 25? | TOM BIHN

Synapse 19 or Synapse 25? | TOM BIHN

Documentally’s Co-Pilot Review (Video)

More from Documentally:
Tri-Star Quick Look
Breezing through airport security

How the Tri-Star Saved AsiaChuck in Indonesia

AsiaChuck - How my TOM BIHN Tri-Star Saved Me in Indonesia

“First time poster here, people. I’ve been lurking for months in the shadows of all you professional Bihners, in awe of your collections and your adventures. My own collection has been building while we prepared to leave the US to live in Asia, knowing how much harder it is to get something shipped to me outside the US. I fell in love with TB bags as soon as I put on my Synapse 19 the first time… then I was addicted! But that’s for a later time…

Recently, my family and I moved to Indonesia. Just this last week, I was sent from Bandung to Medan, which is about a two hour flight. I was going for three days, by myself. I was terribly nervous, not knowing the language yet, and flying a new airline in Asia, where they’re very often completely picky about weight of bags. I knew I needed to pack light, and not check any luggage….”

Read AsiaChuck’s entire post in our forums and learn how the Tri-Star helped make his trip to Indonesia a great one.

“So this is probably the best laptop backpack out there.”

An excerpt from Snarky Nomad’s review of the Synapse 25:

“But I also wanted to highlight what makes the Synapse so distinctive. It’s not just good, but uniquely good, and I wanted to go into obsessive detail regarding each and every one of its distinguishing features, particularly for those who only want to buy something once. I think you’d have a hard time finding a new favorite after picking up one of these, despite the innumerable competitors clamoring for your attention.”

But wait! Go back and start at the beginning and read the entire review. It’s one the most detailed and thorough reviews we’ve seen of the Synapse 25.

Snarky Nomad on the TOM BIHN Synapse 25 Backpack | So this is probably the best laptop backpack out there

The Wirecutter Guide to Traveling Well

The Wirecutter and Robert King (he’s logged a million miles with United) have named their top gear picks. Best non-roller carry-on? The Tri-Star

“We have a full review forthcoming, but after interviewing frequent flyers and researching customer and professional reviews, we like the $280 Tom Bihn Tri-Star for its 1050 denier ballistic nylon exterior, YKK water-repellent zippers, and design touches like an exterior pocket with webbing to hold a water bottle. One Bag One World and The Next Web love it, too. Our travel expert, Rob King, also uses one. He told us, “Tri-Star is the go-to for up to four days on the road.”

Read the full guide to traveling well (business or pleasure) over at The Wirecutter.

TOM BIHN | The Wirecutter on Traveling Well

(We’re #4) 8 Easy Ways to Become an Expert Traveler

#4 on Gene Marks’ 8 Easy Ways to Become an Expert Traveler? Lose the rollerboard and get a TOM BIHN bag:

“Never, ever check luggage. It takes too long to retrieve and costs extra. Adapt, pack less, and buy a Tom Bihn bag. Why? It will fit anywhere, even under a seat when you’re crammed into one of those little regional jets with smaller overhead space. And you can fit the universe inside.”

Read the entire article — 8 Easy Ways to Become an Expert Traveler — over at Inc.

Linked in the article is Jake Luddington’s excellent video review of the Tri-Star:

Loaded Pocketz Reviews the Tri-Star

“The build quality was consistent with what I’ve come to expect with Tom Bihn which is to report it was flawless. Tom’s gear is pricey but considering the abuse that most travel gear endures, spending a little extra is well worth the investment if you’re buying kit that will last. And this bag is definitely built to last.”

Read the full review at Loaded Pocketz. See also: the Tri-Star.

Loaded Pocketz| TOM BIHN Tri-Star Review

Loaded Pocketz | TOM BIHN Tri-Star Travel Bag Review

imperator puts the Western Flyer to the test

imperator received his new Western Flyer and he’s already put it to the test, as detailed in the two reviews he’s posted in our forums.

Western Flyer Review, Part I: The First Week
TOM BIHN | Western Flyer put to the test
“While my first impression of the Freudian Slip was comparable to paying for the seat belts and rustcoat on the car, it turned out to be a great way to flex my daily briefcase into a travel bag. It was also unexpectedly handy to use in the office, I can keep the FS, with my documents and tools inside at my desk, while the WF stays out of the way. And when it comes time to take off for vacation, the FS can stay behind and make room for the guayaberas. And a pocket to put my coffee into when I need to free up a hand to carry rolls of blueprints? Genius.”

Western Flyer Review, Part II: The Conference
TOM BIHN | Western Flyer put to the test
“Walking from the train, navigating the airport, being the tourist and walking around the city, all were substantially easier to navigate with the straps. On the last day of the conference, when everyone is inevitably hauling their rollerboards around after checking out, I switched to backpack straps to navigate tight spaces between tables. And sitting aside it was unobtrusive.”

The Brooks Review on the Founder’s Briefcase

The Brooks Review | TOM BIHN Founder's Briefcase

“What I really liked about [the Founder’s Briefcase] was the ability to leave it standing (it stands well on its own) and zip just the top open to grab my laptop, or iPad — while reserving the option to lay the bag on its side and open it all the way. It’s a nice compromise in that you can easily use the bag as a top-loader (as I do 90% of the time), but it doesn’t bat an eye lash if you want to open it all the way up and lay it flat. This makes it a solid day-to-day option for the traveling person and excellent for neatly packing away your items for a longer journey.”

Read the full review over at The Brooks Review.

Carryology: Synapse 25 is “Best Carry On”

TOM BIHN | Carryology names Synapse 25 best carry on backpack

“This was the most debated category for us, as carry-on has traditionally been treated as ‘maximum legal’ carry-on. The TOM BIHN [Synapse 25] is more of an overnighter than a week away, but it’s every bit a Carry Awards credentialled winner. Excellent fabrics and zips. Flawless construction. An interesting three-dimensional pattern that grows and shrinks without need for compression. And every organizing pocket you could want. Tom Bihn care about making excellent carry, and it totally shows. Oh, and particularly in this pack, we like the black.”

See the Synapse 25 for yourself. And head over to Carryology for more Carry Awards coverage.

News Briefs

EveryDayCommentary, Fatih Arslan, and Living One Handed have new reviews Nik’s Minimalist Wallet. Dominique reviewed the Synapse 19. Shoba Narayan reviewed the Aeronaut 30 + Synapse.

Early reviews of the Luminary 12 / 15 from the Forum community are in. See L15 reviews by logan_g, G42, Lia, anna2222, Quiltmama, and L12 reviews by marbenais, awurrlu and L12/L15 comparison reviews by Cristina, aedifica, bartleby.

The new Luminary 12 and Luminary 15 backpacks + bags in 210d ballistic nylon will be up for pre-order on 02/26. Details here.

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