- Buyer's Guide
Best New Gear: May 2018
Durability, adaptability and organization are key features across the best new gear of May. From customized carry to a gym in your pocket, discover our standout picks…
Totes are great for ready access, but often lack organization to keep smaller essentials tidy. Bellroy’s Tokyo Tote is different, featuring multiple interior and quick-access pockets, including pop-out pockets for a bottle or shoes and a 13″ laptop pocket. The weather-resistant tote provides comfortable carry with its soft nylon webbing straps, and a chic and understated design that transitions easily from work to play to travels.
The QWSTION + Peter Kruder DJ Pack was born through a collaboration across genres but with common values and inspiration. Inspired by music, design and photography, the backpack has been created with the modern DJ in mind who mixes music digitally, spins vinyl and leads a busy on-the-go lifestyle. Limited to 100 pieces, the DJ Pack fits up to 40 records in the main compartment and includes a limited vinyl release by Peter Kruder. The water-resistant bag also includes a padded 15″ laptop pocket and additional pockets for smaller essentials and valuables.
Mission Workshop’s Radian delivers their signature sleek ruggedness in a travel-friendly backpack. The 42L pack features front panel access for easy packing, along with rolltop access for easily reaching gear on the go. Dedicated laptop, iPad, and water bottle pockets keep gear tidy on the move, and the bag is also compatible with Mission Workshop’s Arkiv® system accessories for further customized organization. The Radian is carry-on compatible, but also features shoulder straps that can be stowed away behind a zippered panel to check the bag in or reduce snagging in tight spaces. Made by hand in the USA, the weatherproof pack is built to endure demanding use and comes in a choice of durable 500D black camo MultiCam® Cordura® or Mission Workshop’s tough HT500 textile.
You’ve got your photography bag at the ready, but why not get your clothing involved in the carry action too? The Langly Field Jacket is a versatile weatherproof jacket for photography or travel use. A useful selection of quick-access exterior and interior pockets provide plenty of options for storing camera accessories or travel essentials at the ready. And with its weatherproof, lightweight, durable and breathable construction, you and your gear will be well protected whatever the weather has in store.
Working out while traveling is hard. Busy schedules and time-consuming, pricey trips to the gym means you’ll be grafting hard before you even begin your workout. But the POCKET MONKII provides a highly portable solution. A total-body workout with a fitness device you can carry in your pocket. It sets up in seconds and can be used on trips, outdoors or at home. So when it’s time to train, you can jump right in.
Eagle Creek crafts gear designed to help you get out there and explore. And National Geographic knows all about doing just that. So a collaboration between the brands makes perfect sense. The Eagle Creek National Geographic Guide Series is a six-piece collection that features the Borderless Convertible Carry-On, Yonder Rolling Trunk, Utility Backpack, Pack-It Storage Compression Kit, Guide Travel Pack, and All-Purpose Duffle. Multiple carry options that help you explore and discover diverse environments and experiences, whether your adventures take you to urban jungles or untamed wilderness.
Bring together the classic style of Mystery Ranch’s Flip Backpack and a touch of technicality and you get an adaptable bag for city living and outdoor use alike. The AETHER x Mystery Ranch Backpack features a water-resistant fabric on the body and the base of the bag. Contrasting brushed-aluminum hardware provides eye-catching detailing, while large-gauge zippers let you easily access your gear. Interior laptop and tablet sleeves, a water bottle pocket and a lid pocket provide handy storage for everyday essentials too.
Hailing from Japanese outdoor brand PaaGo Works, the Buddy backpack combines clean styling with rugged outdoor functionality. Available in 22L and 33L options, the pack features a wide-opening main compartment for easy access throughout. Versatile organization is on hand with gear loops and a choice of top, front and side pockets to keep gear tidy and close to hand. And for added functionality the pack also features a detachable back panel that can be dried or washed when not in use.
When you’re traveling, you want a solid bag that’s got your back. And that’s what the Greenroom136 Mission35 is. Tough and versatile, this 35L travel backpack takes on a range of travel environments with hard-wearing durability and convenient access. The clamshell main compartment features a mesh divider and choice of pockets for smaller items, while exterior daisy chain attachment points and handy quick-access front pockets take care of frequently used items. There’s also space for up to a 17″ laptop, along with the option to tailor the pack with a choice of customization options. Even better? Currently you can enjoy a pre-retail release discount.
No phones. No maps. No WiFi. No monthly fees. The Lynq location tracker doesn’t need any of these in order to help you link up with family and friends on the move. The tracker uses long-range, low-power radio frequencies to connect to other Lynq trackers and provide real-time distance and direction. The one-button device pairing and simple interface means even young children can understand and use it. Versatile for finding companions in large crowds or when apart in outdoor spaces, it can also be used to keep tabs on pets for added peace of mind. The Lynq tracker has a range up to 3 miles (5 kilometers) between devices, and can provide real-time tracking of up to 12 people. It lasts up to three days between charges and features an inbuilt clip to secure to clothes, bags, gear, dog collars and more. Weatherproof and durable, it can also be used to set meet-up locations for groups to return to. And with its SafeZone feature you’ll receive alerts if anyone leaves the designated boundary you’ve chosen.
Incase wheels out a handsome take on smart luggage with this carry-on suitcase. The ProConnected 4 Wheel Hubless Roller is TSA-compliant and features a quick-release removable 20,100mAh battery. Two USB-A ports and one USB-C port let you charge multiple devices, while the Bluetooth app allows you to monitor battery levels, track your luggage and receive alerts if it goes out of range. The front panel opening enables convenient packing and access, with interior pockets and tie-down straps for organization. The case also comes with removable 360-degree spinner wheels, and is made with attractive, lightweight, durable and water-resistant Woolenex for functional style on the move.
Pacsafe have enjoyed two decades in the carry industry. So it’s fitting that to celebrate their 20th anniversary they’ve launched two bags featuring ECONYL fabric, made from pre- and post-consumer waste including fishing nets that have been left in the ocean and pose entanglement threats to wildlife. The collection includes the Limited Edition Travelsafe® 3L ECONYL® portable safe and Limited Edition Vibe 28L ECONYL® backpack. One hundred percent of profits from the two bags will go to Pacsafe’s Turtle Fund, which supports sea turtle conservation projects across the globe.
Direct-to-consumer luggage brands are providing increasingly affordable options to enjoy high-quality pieces without the premium price tag. But Roam is taking things a step further with fully customizable luggage. The brand features Tumi’s founder and former CEO Charlie Clifford as well as Tumi’s former Executive VP Larry Lein among its founding team, and is set to add personalized spice to your trips with an abundance of luggage options. A choice of carry-on and check-in suitcases are available, with numerous color customization options, from the front and back shells to the stitching, wheels, zippers and more. Each case is made to order in the USA, with delivery in as little as one day.