What’s in My Backpack 2019: The ULTIMATE Portable Setup

What’s in My Backpack 2019: The ULTIMATE Portable Setup


– Getting back here is not easy. (crew laughing) All right, ladies and
gentlemen, it is time for another “What’s In My Backpack” video. My gosh, this things so heavy. Now I haven’t done one of
these in over two years I think and even though I get a request, probably at least once a month for an updated “What’s
In My Backpack” video, I held off because quite
honestly, before now, I really didn’t change
my setup since 2017. I got a new MacBook, but
really nothing else changed. But, all things must come to an end. All things must change, all
things must take a new form and that is exactly what
my backpack is doing now. So basically, I’ve been doing
a lot of traveling lately and while my MacBook Pro is powerful, it’s not quite the setup
that I wanted it to be. So, I have built what I consider to be the ultimate no-compromises,
portable workstation. Now, what do I mean by no-compromises? Well, when I’m at home, I’ve
got access to my dual monitor, dual 4K monitors actually,
gaming workstation, which has a powerful CPU, a lot of RAM, a very good graphics card
and it also runs Windows, so I can play games and
even though I’ve been using Mac OS and Windows for
over 10 years concurrently on a daily basis, I
actually prefer Windows. So I have decided to take
the leap and switch over to Windows and not just switch to Windows on the laptop side, but try to build an equivalent experience, or to get as close as I can, to
that desktop Holy Grail. So, that is what I’m gonna show you today. We’re gonna go through my
backpack, which now contains the ultimate portable workstation, along with a few other doodads that you might find interesting. But before we get inside the bag, let’s talk a little bit
about the bag itself. Now if you saw my 2017 video, the bag itself has not changed. This is the eBags Professional
Slim Laptop Backpack and it is still my favorite backpack for everyday work use
and also for traveling. I’ve got all my clothes in a suitcase. I bring this on the plane. It’s everything that I want it to be. Not least of which, because
you get this bottom pocket here that is just perfect
for your laptop brick, your charging cord, maybe
a couple of other things, but it’s nice and separated
from everything else in the bag and it makes that charge cord
really, really accessible. The other thing that I like a lot is the flip out organizational
kind of flap here. I have never seen
another backpack do this, it kinda let’s you get
access to all these pockets, the little pen holders, everything, without having to dig in and that is one of the main reasons I like this bag. So, that being said, let’s
talk about the ultimate, portable, gaming/productivity
workstation, all right? So, the brains of the operation
is a pretty new laptop. This is the ASUS ROG, I
guess Republic of Gamers, Zephyrus GX701. It’s a 17 inch gaming laptop, but it’s actually pretty thin and light. It’s no MacBook Pro, it’s no MacBook Air, but it’s, for a 17 inch gaming laptop, quite thin and pretty portable actually. I think the way they’ve
done this is number one, they’ve made the bezels of the screen just much thinner than I’ve
seen on previous gaming laptops. They also cut out the
webcam, which some people on the internet are kind of mad about, I could really care less personally. Another cool thing is
when you open the laptop, it literally raises
itself up with this cool like hinge thing that
comes out of the bottom to add extra cooling capacity. So this thing can run Adobe Premiere. I can do all my editing much better than any other laptop that
I’ve used in the past. It can run games at
ridiculous frame rates. And it’s honestly, pretty
great to work with. The only quirk that I’ve noticed is, well, the keyboard is at the bottom. So if you have a little
tiny counter to work at, like a coffee shop or something,
it’s not the ideal laptop because it’s coming right up to the edge. And I personally like to
have a little bit of room to put my wrists down, or
at least have some room for my arms, but if
there’s a big enough table wherever I’m going, this
thing works just fine. Now, my desktop is dual
monitor and you’re thinking, “This thing, 17 inch
screen, it’s pretty good. “But it’ not dual monitor, Tom. “It’s not the ultimate,
no-compromises portable gaming setup “if you don’t have a second monitor.” And to that I say, I do. So this is a pretty
cool little new edition. This is a USB-C portable, full HD 1080p monitor and it actually plugs into the laptop with just a single USB-C cord. And it’s got this cool
smart case which allows you to kind of fold it into
different configurations. So that one works for just your standard landscape orientation and
then you can actually fold these down and put it into portrait mode if you’re like a coder
or something like that. You can get all your code
on there, I guess man. Like 100 lines of code. So those two taken
together enable me to have a perfect dual screen setup wherever I am, as long as I have a big enough table. I use the keyboard on the laptop, but another kind of
compromise with the laptop is the track pad is really small. Honestly, the gestures are amazing. The drivers they have put into this thing make it nearly as good as
a MacBook Pro’s track pad in terms of how smooth it feels. Which I found very surprising,
but it’s just kind of tiny and it’s not the easiest
thing in the world to use. So, instead I’ve got a
Corsair, I believe this is the Dark Core Wireless Gaming Mouse and I’ve also got a mousepad in here. So these together, I
mean, this is it guys. This is basically no-compromises. The CPU in a laptop is
never really gonna match what you get in a desktop, so
video render times are longer, you can’t do quite as insane of animations in a program like After Effects
as you can with a desktop, but this is pretty much as
close as you’re gonna get, unless you wanna lug around
one of those truly huge laptops with like a desktop grade graphics card. And at that point, you’re
getting a different backpack and you’re gonna have
to do a lot of squats and eat a lot of oats,
which you know, I do, but I don’t wanna have
to do that many squats. All right, so getting into the rest of the backpack’s contents
here, where you guys are probably actually curious about. Here in the bottom
pocket here, like I said, this is great for storing charge cords and the computer brick for your laptop. And then, up here we’ve got
a couple of other things. One, we got a single folder for papers. Now, stay tuned for next week’s video ’cause I’m doing a whole
guide on file organization. I’ve got some alternative
options for people who get a lot of papers,
but if you’re like me. If you digitize almost
everything that you get and you’re also not in
school and don’t get a whole lot of handouts,
I think a single folder is perfectly adequate for
storing papers temporarily, and then coming home
later on and getting them either digitized or into
an actual filing cabinet. Okay, so for the next
item, I wanna go back to one of the drawbacks I
mentioned for this gaming laptop. The battery life is not the
greatest thing in the world. And if I have easy access to
a plug, that isn’t an issue. But on occasion, I’m gonna go to a place where I just don’t have an outlet and I might need to do a lot of work. So if I’m doing heavy duty,
video editing, gaming, all kinds of stuff like that, it’s gonna happen on the laptop. But if I’m just doing a really
simple task like a writing, I don’t necessarily need this. So if I’m traveling somewhere,
I don’t want to bring two laptops, I can just
bring this iPad Mini. And with the case here,
it can easily stand up and then I can pair it
with a Bluetooth keyboard. Now this is not the
Apple Bluetooth keyboard. This is a Logitech K811, but
I find this to be a lot better than Apple’s Bluetooth
keyboard, the key travel, it feels nicer, it feels more substantial. And the other nice thing
is it can actually switch between three different Bluetooth devices, so if you’ve got an iPad
and maybe a desktop computer or a phone, you could
easily switch between them. But put those two things together and you have a really nice
portable writing setup that lasts for 10, 12 hours. Whap, oh, one little other feature that I didn’t mention about this backpack, it does have this nice
padded and shallow pocket in the top here that’s perfect for an iPad Mini or for a little notebook. Again, just like with the
folders, I don’t do a whole lot with paper, I don’t take a
whole lot of notes by hand. But occasionally, I do
wanna draw something out or I wanna write some notes by hand, so I’ve just got this little free notebook that I got from a coworking space in there and I can make to-do lists
and all kinds of other stuff. And that brings us to the,
I guess the main pocket of the backpack, this is
like the laptop pocket, but there’s more room in here. The first thing that I have
here, this isn’t something that I keep in my backpack all the time, but when I’m traveling,
I put this sorta long, three-prong, that’s the
most important part, three-prong extension
cord in the backpack. That way if I need to sit somewhere that’s not very close to an outlet, I have a little bit of extra length that I can use to plug in. The other thing is, this cord
has three plugs on there. So number one, if I need
to charge multiple devices, I can do that, but if I’m at an airport or I’m at a very busy coffee
shop where all the outlets have been dominated by other people, I can make new friends, I can split one outlet into two, and I’m good to go. Also in this main pocket,
we’ve got the headphones. These are the same headphones
I’ve been using for two years. They’re the Bose, (sighing)
they’re the Bose QC35s, they’re wireless, Bluetooth,
noise-canceling headphones, and the noise-canceling
aspect is the game changer. I was unconvinced about
active noise-canceling until my friend Martin let me try his, I think they were Beats
noise-canceling headphones a couple of years ago, right
away I was sold on the benefits because when you have that
active noise-canceling, it essentially opens up a whole plethora of different study spaces
and workspaces to you, because where places
were too noisy before, they are now perfectly workable. So if you got a coffee shop
where they blast the music too loud or people are always talking, you can just pop these on
and you are not going to hear any of what is going on around you and you can actually
focus on whatchu gotta do. And last thing in this
pocket is just a big novel. I would usually read
books on the Kindle app, but I just really wanted
the physical version of this ’cause I saw it sitting
on a bookstore shelf and “Children of Ruin”, it’s
a sequel to a Sci-Fi novel that I read last year and it’s
absolutely fantastic so far. And that brings us to all like
the knickknack stuff, right? All the tiny little things in here. So, gotta couple of things, a marker. Just like various little
knickknacks in here, but this is just a
little business card case and I always recommend
just carrying around a couple of business cards, you know, if you are trying to find clients, trying to find potential
colleagues to work with. If you’re looking for a
job, just having a couple of business cards in your
backpack will allow you to hand someone one and
let them remember you in a pretty classy way. What else, oh yeah, we got a lot of cords. Every single kind of
cord that you could want. So micro USB, mini USB, USB-C,
Apple Lightning is in there. Also, we’ve got dongles,
because I went to that new MacBook Pro last year, so
I’m livin’ that dongle life, and it’s not all that necessary
on the big Windows laptop. The IO is pretty good on that thing, but it does have HDMI and
the SD card reader slot, that’s one thing that almost all laptops I see nowadays have been jettisoning, so as a content creator, as
a YouTuber with a SD card in that camera right there,
kinda need the dongle. Presentation remote, so if
you do speeches anywhere, a presentation remote that
plugs into your laptop and let’s you advance slides
can be really, really handy. And a pair of cheap sunglasses. I don’t buy expensive
sunglasses because I break or lose them all the time, so
I just buy like packs of three or five on Amazon for a
dollar and ironically, I haven’t lost a pair in quite a while, but these also didn’t cost me much and they work perfectly fine for me. And last, we’ve just
got few things in here. Flash drive, I still
actually use a flash drive, even though I’m a devotee of Google Drive and in the past, Dropbox,
sometimes you need to transfer big files quickly, for
example, I will be giving all the footage for this video
to my editor and even though we could transfer it online,
it’s gonna be quicker for him to just take this flash drive
home and then immediately transfer the footage to his computer, ’cause there’s gonna be gigabytes of it. Oh how could I forget, my John Wick coin, just in case I get excommunicado sometime, I’m gonna need this to buy, I don’t know, various weaponry or a suit or a dog. We’ve got the webcam
that comes with laptop. One thing I will note
about this is even though some people are kind of
annoyed that they didn’t build the laptop with a
webcam in the chassis, the webcam that they include in the box is actually a lot better than
most laptops have built in. So for my money, this is
actually a better solution because when I wanna use a webcam, I would rather it be higher quality than be built into my laptop. And finally, rounding things
out, we have a little USB thing for the wireless mouse and
a couple of iPhone bricks. And that’s about it, so that is it. That is basically everything in my bag. The one thing that I do wanna mention before we end this video is this book that I mentioned earlier,
“Children of Ruin”. I’m about 135 pages into it so far and I’m gonna make a prediction now that this will be my
favorite Sci-Fi novel of 2019 and I say that with confidence
because the first book in this series, “Children of Time”, was indeed my favorite
Sci-Fi novel of 2018. It was absolutely fantastic,
the listen actually, ’cause I listened to it
while I was on a 10 hour trip from Denver to Iowa for Christmas, and if you wanna dig
into that book as well, now is a great time to do
it because you can get it on Audible and if you are
an Amazon Prime member, you can actually get
three months of Audible for just $4.95 per month by
going over to audible.com/thomas or by texting Thomas to
500-500 on your phone. And that is an excellent
deal because you’re basically getting three months for the price of one, but you’re gonna wanna do it soon because that offer ends July 31st. Now for my part, Audible
is one of my most used apps on a daily basis because
whenever I’m commuting somewhere or going for a long bike
ride or cooking dinner, I love to listen to audiobooks. And Audible is the best
place on the internet to get your hands on audiobooks. They have the largest
library of audiobook titles that you’re gonna find anywhere, including all the bestsellers and both of my recommendations for this month. Because in addition to “Children of Time”, I’m also going to recommend
“The Productivity Project” by Chris Bailey and the reason
I’m recommending this one is because we are getting
really close to a new semester and “The Productivity Project” is an excellent productivity overview. If you wanna learn how
to manage your time, your attention and your
energy more efficiently, it is a great book to dig through. Now with Audible, you get
one credit every single month that is good for any
audiobook in their library, plus two Audible originals
that you cannot get anywhere else and 100s of audio workout and meditation and fitness programs. So if you are an Amazon Prime member, you can go over to audible.com/thomas or text Thomas to 500-500 on your phone to get three months of Audible for just $4.95 for each of those months. Big thanks as always goes
out to Audible for sponsoring this video and being a big
supporter of my channel and thank you for watching as well. If you enjoyed this video,
definitely hit that like button. Get subscribed right there
and also download a free copy of my book on how to earn
better grades over there. Last but not least, you can
find a couple more videos on this channel right over here and here. And I will see you in next week’s video.

100 thoughts on “What’s in My Backpack 2019: The ULTIMATE Portable Setup

  1. My husband is reading the children of time on my e-reader now, thanks for the recommendation. All shops are closed and stormy weather on it's way, so perfect day for reading!

  2. Ultimate portable setup, carries around an extra monitor I don't think that makes it ULTIMATLY portable hahaha

  3. Hey Thomas, great video and content all around! I'm now starting with your "Tutorial" on how to make a website. I have a question for you about the OS that you have preference, you moved from Mac OS to Windows and i would like to know why you prefer Windows? taking specs and price apart, why do you prefer it? Because i was thinking in going from Windows to Mac OS so this got me curious.
    Greetings from Portugal

  4. Nice video, just wanted to ask have you considered using an eGPU (External Graphics Card)? They plug in with USB-C Thunderbolt and work like a normal GPU otherwise, that way you can have a 2-in-1 or something and still have a nice GPU with it. Pretty pricy though :/

  5. Your setup is great. And I know this is nitpicking, but just a suggestion, you could replace your second monitor with an iPad and your Asus with a MacBook.
    You'll weigh less. And you won't need to sit beside a power outlet all the time. ๐Ÿ™Œ๐Ÿป

  6. I think the monitor model is supposed to be mb16ac instead of mb1ac as stated in the description. I looked up mb1ac and came up with nothing.

  7. Have the same ASUS laptop. Love it. I can do VR on it without any issues! Also, loved this less formal style video! Almost felt like an extension of a podcast episode

  8. ีกีฐษ‘ีฅ ีกษ‘ีฟ ีฅีฐษ‘ีฅ ีชาฝัตรญฯฒาฝ รญีฒ 6:44???

  9. Theres one thing i want to mention. You shouldnt ever buy cheap sunglasses as what happens is if they are not UV rated they will still let in uv radiation which will be more harmful to your eyes than just not wearing sunnies at all as your pupil will expand allowing more of that radiation in.

    If you are going to get some sunglasses make sure you actually get some uv rated ones. Not worth going cheap on these

  10. Can YouTube community have a guideline to call portable something for which the bag pack + everything inside is less than 5/7pounds cause this seems super heavyyyyyyyy. Also, for next time, I would love a weight stat and how long you can carry them before getting tired

  11. so productive people: headphones: I saw the recom for bose qc II, has anyone compared them with sony m3? I want to use them manly for studying, working with classical/instrumental/chill music, and for listening to audiobooks and podcast. any help in choosing would be appreciated.

  12. This bag is everything!! I was going to order two tactical bags, one for a bug out bag (since I live in Cali and you never know when a fire or a quake will hit) and one for classes, but I think I'm gonna get this bad boy for classes! Also, that gaming laptop is soooo slender, wow! They've come a long ways. I have my big rig at home for gaming and I just carry a Chromebook to get my work done for college on so I'm not tempted to game instead of work haha. ๐Ÿ™‚

  13. I really like the e-bags backpack and definitely getting one for myself, can somebody drop a link for me? Thank you so much!!

  14. I love your videos! Back to school season is coming up, and Iโ€™d love if you could do a productivity/ school tips specifically for high schoolers.

  15. Sir Frank kindly tell youtube to add 3ร— and 4ร— playback speed. I hope you can convince youtube.๐Ÿ˜

  16. "I still use flash drive" yeah, 'cause flash drives are obsolete nowadays, lmao, first world countries are ridiculous af,

  17. I've watched loads of EDC trying to figure out what I could improve or need to do to make it work more, none of them clicked with me to the point I just watched them for enjoyment. Yours? Yours absolutely nailed it, non-compromising? Hell yes please! I have a custom gaming laptop because this it is my main workspace, I've been compromising with the lack of several things one being the second monitor! Finding a laptop bag that can handle a gaming laptop rather than the thin mac has been a mission, I'll probably buy your bag. Love the John Wick coin, thank you for sharing your EDC that is an actual EDC rather than an elaborate product advertisement.

  18. One thing I would recommend that has been a game changer for me is magnetic coupling cables. They come with all three popular imputs and then any cable can be used on any device. I got the NetDot 3 off of Amazon.

  19. Hey Thomas! Be careful with cheap sunglass because some are just tinted but don't have UV protection and can damage your eyes more because you keep your eyes open from the tint but the UV rays still pass through! Just make sure it says it has 100% UV protection

  20. the moment you pulled window's laptop out of the bag pack! it was my signal to leave the video. once an apple always an apple!

  21. Wow, your tech backpack is way cooler and in many ways more Hi-Tech than most tech YouTubers' backpacks. Loved the video.

  22. Hey Thomas, i just won a full scholarship for Turkey and i was wondering if you could make a video with some general tips. Things like what to take with me, what do i must do as soon as i arrive or what i should do before going there. Thanks in advance ๐Ÿ™‚

  23. I appreciate a WIMB that you have been carrying around for over 2 years! Really shows that you have found your uniform and and satisfied with your existing purchase.

  24. I've never heard of you, never seen a video, nothing. But if you have an Order of Ecclesia wall scroll hanging up in your office, you're okay in my book.

  25. Thomas: nothing
    Thomas: literally nothing
    comment section: ๐šƒ๐™ท๐™พ๐™ผ๐™ฐ๐š‚ ๐šˆ๐™พ๐š„'๐š๐™ด ๐š‚๐™พ ๐™ธ๐™ฝ๐š‚๐™ฟ๐™ธ๐š๐™ธ๐™ฝ๐™ถ!

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