New gear I’m enjoying, March 2021
In the last two months, I’ve made a few upgrades to my desk setup & general gear.
Satechi USB-C Multiport Adapter. While there's no shortage of wildly expensive Thunderbolt docks & cheaper USB-C hubs, this struck the perfect balance for me of ports & price. It’s USB 3.1 Gen 2, so supports the iPad Pro but not Thunderbolt 3. Brilliantly, it has a mini USB-C cable inside it for travel, while also coming with a longer cable to use at your desk. This way, I can seamlessly switch between connecting my charger & external accessories to my Mac & my iPad, without an ugly adapter hanging off the side wearing out every day.
Allbirds Dashers. (These were recently sent to me for free.) I’ve been keeping up with my daily Apple Fitness+ workouts, & Allbirds’ relatively-new running shoes are an excellent evolution of their standard shoes. I’ve been wearing them every morning with their Trino Sprinters socks.
Apple MagSafe Wallet. Though I’ve loved using the MagSafe charger on my iPhone, I held off on the wallet primarily because…I don’t go anywhere or use my wallet anymore. Nonetheless, I decided to pick one up recently, in California Poppy to contrast my Pacific Blue iPhone 12 Pro. It has just the right grip on the iPhone, it’s easy to slip cards in & out (it fits my Apple Card + NYU ID just fine, another card doesn’t really fit since both of those are thicker than most cards), the color looks awesome.
2019 MacBook Pro 16”. In the era of the M1 Macs, this is not an exciting computer, but I recently got one from my new job, which I’m now using instead of a 2018 13" MacBook Pro. I’ve really been enjoying the larger display, new keyboard, & excellent speakers. Unfortunately, it’s always running its fans rather loudly, which makes me glad for…
AirPods Max (Pink). They look cute, sound great, they’re super comfortable, they have great battery life, amazing noise canceling, all the AirPods magic. While they initially had some bugs, a recent firmware update fixed most of them. They’re perfectly priced & I could barely be happier with them.
Some stationary & pens, an unusual category for me:
Theme System Journal v2. I’m a long-time listener to the Cortex podcast, from which the Theme System evolved. I bought the first Theme System Journal when it was released, but for the start of 2021 I decided I finally wanted to dive into making my own yearly theme (it’s the Year of Branching Out!). I’m still working through my v1 notebook, but after the last batch sold out ridiculously quickly, I immediately purchased a v2 when they came back in stock.
Lamy Safari Fountain Pen. It’s been a number of years since I had a fountain pen, but writing in my Theme System Journal, I decided to get back into it. I picked this up alongside a Lamy Safari Rollerball, & it’s been a joy. Though it comes with a blue cartridge, I recommend getting a cartridge converter as well so you can refill it from a bottle of ink.
Field Notes Snowy Evening. Though I’m a longtime fan of the Field Notes brand, the last few seasonal releases haven’t especially caught my eye. Generative art & dot grid paper hits the spot for me though, so I’ve been using my Field Notes for meeting notes & other jotting-downs that don’t fit in my Theme System Journal.
Gear I’ve got my eyes on:
The Floyd Standing Desk. Though several years ago I had a standing desk, I eventually gave up on it since my sleep-deprived high school body couldn’t take standing up doing homework in the middle of the night. Luckily, I have a much healthier schedule now, & I feel incredibly constrained sitting down at my IKEA desk. I’m eagerly awaiting delivery of this desk I found via Paul Stamatiou’s recommendation, & I picked up Floyd’s Side Table to go beside my bed as well. Use this link for $75 off.
TwelveSouth HoverBar Duo. I’ve been using TwelveSouth’s Compass Pro since it came out—especially for drawing with the iPad at a low angle on my desk with the Apple Pencil & propping it up at a steep angle for FaceTime calls—& it’s incredibly flexible, portable, & sturdy. This new iPad stand has come out to solid reviews, & I’ve just ordered one.
Kensington StudioDock for iPad. Federico Viticci came away lukewarm, Christopher Lawley loved it; while I appreciate that it’s being made, I’ve decided to pass. While it is $400, you can totally spend $150 on a hub with those ports, $150 on the dual Qi charger mat, & $100 on a weighted stand of good build quality, so the price makes sense. But these days, my primary work at a desk is on my company MacBook Pro, so I’m more looking for a way to trade accessories between the devices, which is the Satechi dock.