I vowed never to go to CES again after getting lost and stumbling through an absolute accessory nightmare. But here I am, getting ready for another long week that will surely be filled with little sleep and lots and lots of hand sanitizer. The good thing about this being my second CES is that I know what to expect—kind of. You're never really prepared for what's going to happen. More than the gigantic TVs, new wearables and fancy executives, I'm very much looking forward to seeing the rest of the TechnoBuffalo staff flying in from the east coast. Let the odds ever be in our favor. Ha.
In case you're wondering, the little knick knacks in my picture include a JCrew slim wallet, Leatherman multitool, Griffin headphones and an SD card reader.
11-inch MacBook Air
Since starting with TechnoBuffalo back in 2011, this MacBook Air has been an incredibly faithful companion to me, quietly sitting in my bag (and countless car rides) all over the United States without so much as a blip. I haven't had a single issue (knock on wood) with Apple's portable machine, which you expect out of something so finely made. What I like in particular about the 11-inch model, though, is how small it is, and how I can always rely on it to help get me through long weeks and weekends of whatever it is I'm doing. I'll be scrambling around the CES show floor all week, so the smaller and lighter my bag is, the better. This model is a 2010, so it's definitely on its last legs, but I'm sure—or I hope—it'll get me through my second CES without issue.
I did something crazy. Instead of exchanging my iPhone 5 for the awesome, amazing, totally new iPhone 5s with Touch ID, I went with the iPhone 5c instead. Since reviewing Apple's cheaper device, the more colorful handset has had me under a spell; maybe it's the bright blue color, or the excellent build quality. I've primarily been an iOS user for the past few years, and I have no real reason to switch over to the Android. I have very basic needs as a smartphone user, but I can always appreciate what competing mobile operating systems have to offer, which I also have a Moto X (below). The iPhone 5c, however, is my number one choice, and I have no intentions of switching anytime soon.
What else can I say about the Moto X? It was my choice for Smartphone of the Year; I knew it was going to be special from the start. Because Android let's me quickly glimpse at calendar events—not to mention Google's Now will tell me when I should leave in order to make it to that event on time—the Moto X will prove invaluable during the big show. I'll also be using it to post pictures to our Instagram throughout the entire week—even on our drive out there in the awesome Odyssey Honda hooked us up with. I'm sure we'll see a lot of fancy new Android phones at CES, but the Moto X is still my top pick among the Android lot.
Olympus Stylus XZ-2
Since I'll be constantly roaming the show floor and meeting up with companies throughout the week, I'll definitely need more than a phone to document what I see. Olympus sent along its Stylus XZ-2 last year, and it's been a pretty handy addition when I'm out and about. It has plenty of functionality and flexibility, but it still retains a small size without sacrificing power, so I can count on it to take excellent pictures. And if I'm in a jam, I can even rely on it for some video—this year, I'm going to try and take as much video of the show (and our journey out there) as possible.
Mophie Powerstation XL
There will be herds of people swarming around the CES floor, which means every last outlet will be spoken for. Normally I don't really need to carry an external battery with me, but in this industry, it's required during such a big trade show. Emails and messages will be exchanged constantly (if you can get a signal), which means your battery will dry up faster than water in the Sahara. Mophie was kind enough to send us a care package not a moment too soon. The company's new PowerStation XL will definitely be appreciated by the TechnoBuffalo staff once the show kicks off.
This isn't something I necessarily need for CES—there will be virtually zero downtime to play—but it'll act as my entertainment on the drive out. For sanity's sake. Five looooong hours with Roy, Jon and Ralph in a mini van, on the way to Vegas, isn't my idea of a fun way to start what will likely be an exhausting week. But I'll be able to take some of the pain away through FIFA and Uncharted therapy. I've had the Vita for awhile now, but have played maybe a total of an hour. Taking it on a long drive will be the perfect opportunity to really spend some time with Sony's portable gaming machine.
Herschel Pop Quiz Backpack
I had this same backpack at last year's show, and it has held up pretty darn well since then. The thing is quite durable, and sports a ton of pockets, which is handy for organizing all my gear—and let me carry around a health kit so I hopefully (knock on wood again) don't get sick. Herschel bags are a little pricey, but they're stylish, comfortable, and can handle the abuse. There's a laptop sleeve with micro fiber cloth, two pockets in the front, a big main compartment, and a pocket at the top for little trinkets.
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