All posts in “Gear”

OCLU Introduces 4K Action Cam

Arizona-based OCLU is a new brand with a brand new 4k action camera. In addition to shooting 4k at 30 fps, it shoots 1080p at 120 fps for super slo-mo and 12mp still images. It features a 150º wide-angle lens, wi-fi, waterproofing to 50-meters, and it’s compatible with GoPro’s many mounts.

Amazon’s New Lossless Streaming Service Is Way Cheaper Than Tidal

Ahead of next week’s hardware announcement, Amazon has rolled out a lossless streaming section within its Amazon Music service. It’s called Amazon Music HD . If you’re already an Amazon Music subscriber, you can subscribe to the new service for an extra $5 per month. If you’re a Prime member, you can subscribe to the service for $13 per month for Prime members. If you’re not a Prime member, it’ll cost you $15 per month. Oh yea, there’s also free 90-day trial for anybody who wants to try Amazon Music HD right now.

Clearly, Amazon is making a big move to cater to audiophiles. With Amazon Music HD, you’ll be able to stream millions of audio tracks in “High Definition,” which is roughly CD quality, or “Ultra HD,” which is up to 24-bit/192kHz and the highest-resolution audio that’s available for streamers. All this is interesting because, well, Amazon Music HD is going to be able to stream higher-resolution tracks than both Spotify and Apple Music, and it’s also going to cost a few extra bucks less than Tidal’s $20 per month subscription. Basically, this could shake up the streaming market for people who want to listen to higher-end audio.

Of course, this also means that Amazon needs to come out with some speakers that can actually handle these new high-res tracks. Right now, Amazon’s current line of Echo smart speakers are good for what they are – affordable smart speakers – but they aren’t designed to handle these new Ultra HD audio tracks. They could play them, for sure, but you wouldn’t be able to hear the tracks in all their lossless glory; they’d probably sound the same as the music you already stream to.

Amazon’s big hardware event is September 25, and there’s a really good chance that we’re going to see Amazon’s first jab into reference-quality speakers. We may even see new or upgraded models of Amazon’s higher-end components, like the Echo Link and Echo Link Amp.

These Pots and Pans Are for People Who Don’t Know How to Cook

Cookware brand Equal Parts isn’t trying to make peak performance cooking equipment. It doesn’t want to be a direct-to-consumer All-Clad and it doesn’t make a big deal of how much money you save buying directly from them. Instead, Equal Parts, the first brand under the Pattern umbrella, makes pots, pans and kitchen gear for people who don’t know the difference between a sauté pan and a skillet.

Pattern co-founder and chief creative officer Emmett Shine and Equal Parts general manager Tyler Sgro started with a simple task: create a cookware company that got people who aren’t cooking into the kitchen.

“Not a lot of people actually know what poaching is versus frying, searing, blanching and so on. If you didn’t grow up in a kitchen, those things are intimidating,” Shine said. “What does the home cook want? What’s something they’re actually going to use?”

The culmination of years of research, data collecting and testing, Equal Parts’ beginner-friendly cookware collections are here.

Equal Parts murdered-out “Big Pan” in action.

Sgro and Shine say every feature is tied to pain point with traditional cookware. The cookware is aluminum because it’s lighter and heats faster than steel, and it’s coated in a ceramic mixture that cleans up easily and heats evenly. Everything from the pots and pans to the mixing bowls are designed to nest, making cabinet space less of an issue, and every item is dishwasher-safe. Even the vocabulary is edited for simplicity — “big pan” instead of sauté pan, “small pot” in place of saucier.

The brand even goes as far as offering an 8-week text-based “coaching” package with every cookware set. Buyers can text coaches cooking-related questions seven days a week, from simple recipe queries to custom meal advice based on what ingredients are on hand.

“Our intention was not to be another pro-sumer brand, it was to focus on the millions and millions of young adults in America who have worked hard, live in a space that’s not as big as they’d like and have less skill in the kitchen than they’d prefer,” Shine said.

Equal Parts products are available in sets starting at $249. Sets may include anything from a few pieces of ceramic-coated aluminum cookware or an entire kitchen suite.

Leica and Fender Just Released a Very Limited Camera and Guitar Set

Leica and Fender just released a very limited camera and guitar set for legendary guitarist Andy Summers. The pairing is comprised of a Custom Shop Stratocaster and an M Monochrom camera customized for the Grammy-winning musician.

Summers, a former member of The Police, is a deft photographer who has exhibited work at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in NYC, Beaux Arts Gallery in London, BLD Gallery in Tokyo and Milk Gallery in NYC, among other places. For the partnership with Leica and Fender, Summers literally combined his two passions. “After all these years of being obsessed with photography and the guitar, I now have the two things together for the first time,” he said in a statement. “I’ve always thought of my photographic experience as tearing pages from a book and then reshuffling the results into a new visual syntax, and the collage-forward design of the Leica M Monochrom ‘Signature’ is the physical embodiment of just that.”

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The Leica M Monochrom “Signature” camera has a custom-wrapped leatherette collage of Summers’ monochrome photos, a glassy finish, silver chrome hardware and a red-line engraving of Summer’s signature. It comes with a Leica Summicron-M f/2 35mm ASPH lens with a vintage lens hood, a guitar-inspired camera strap and an Overweth bag. Available at Leica boutiques, it retails for $14,995 and is limited to 50 pieces.

The Fender Custom Shop Andy Summers Monochrome Strat is built by Masterbuilder Dennis Galuszka and features another custom-wrapped collage of Summers’ monochrome photos taken with Leica M cameras. It features a two-piece alder body, a one-piece riftsawn maple neck with a “’63 C” profile, 21 medium-vintage frets (with a red camera dot inlay at the 15th fret) and a bone nut.

“This Stratocaster guitar is also very inspiring,” Summers said. “The really incredible thing the Fender Custom Shop had to pull off was getting my photo collage on the guitar body. I still don’t know how they did it!”

The Monochrome Strat has three hand-wound Custom Shop ‘60s Strat pickups and unique Leica-style volume and tone knobs. It, like the camera, is limited to 50 pieces and retails for $12,500.

Andy Summers Monochrome Strat by Fender $12,500

M Monochrom “Signature” Camera by Leica $14,995
Note: Purchasing products through our links may earn us a portion of the sale, which supports our editorial team’s mission. Learn more here.

iPhone 11 Review: The Affordable iPhone Is a Little Too Good

Watch Out For: There’s no getting around the fact that the iPhone 11 is basically the same phone as the iPhone XR, but with new rear and front camera systems, the A13 Bionic chip and some bumped up specs. The two iPhones have the same curves, dimensions, display and notch – it’s all very familiar. That’s good if you like the iPhone XR, but less good if you’re trying to justify the decision to upgrade from one to the other.

Alternatives: Let’s start with the assumption that you’re dead-set on an iPhone: If you’re willing to pay a little more, the iPhone 11 Pros have a better camera system, nicer display and few other upgraded features. They also are available in smaller or larger sizes. Last year’s iPhone XR is still a great phone and Apple lowered the starting price to $599 (previously $749). A little surprisingly, Apple isn’t selling new iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max, but it is selling the two-year-old iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus, starting at $499 and $549 respectively.

The above two photos are shot using the iPhone’s 1) wide and 2)ultra-wide lenses.

If you’re not dead-set on an iPhone, the scope of alternatives is too wide to consider fully here, but definitely includes Samsung’s latest offerings in the form of the S10 and the Note10, as well as Google’s Pixel 4, which is due to be announced in October, so it’s wise to sit tight for now.

Verdict: The iPhone 11 is the new iPhone that most people should buy. It has so many of the same features as the significantly more expensive iPhone 11 Pros, that it doesn’t feel like “the cheap iPhone.” Its dual-camera system with an ultra-wide lens and the ability to shoot 4K video at 60fps, also means that the iPhone 11 feels like a big upgrade over the older iPhone XR and iPhone 8. It doesn’t hurt that it’s also the most affordable new iPhone to be released in years.

(Need extra incentive? If you purchase an iPhone, iPad, Mac or Apple TV – new or older models – you’ll get a free one-year subscription to Apple’s new streaming service, Apple TV+, when it launches on November 1.)

Key Specs

Display: Liquid Retina HD
Processor: A13 Bionic
Rear Camera System: Dual 12-megapixal cameras; ultra wide (ƒ/2.4 aperture) and wide (ƒ/1.8)
Front Camera System:: 12-megapixal TrueDepth camera (ƒ/2.2)
Water-resistance: IP68 rating
Materials: Glass and aluminum design
Key features: Night Mode, 4K video at 60fps recording, slow motion selfies
Colors: Purple, yellow, green, black, white, (Product) red

Apple provided this product for review.

Note: Purchasing products through our links may earn us a portion of the sale, which supports our editorial team’s mission. Learn more here.

iPhone 11 Pro Review: Hands Down, The Best iPhone Ever

The most compelling and conspicuous feature of the iPhone 11 Pro is its triple-camera system, and after using it for the better part of the week, it’s definitely the best and most versatile set of cameras that Apple has ever put in any iPhone. The ultra-wide lens will feel like a pretty significant upgrade for anybody who has an older iPhone, but as the iPhone 11 has it too, it really comes down to the telephoto lens and how if you’ll take full advantage of it. This extra lens enables the two Pro models to take two different kinds of Portrait Mode photos, one that is really zoomed-in (which is similar to what the iPhone XS could do) and one that is more zoomed-out (which is exactly the same Portrait mode as the iPhone 11) for those who want to grab for background in the photo. If you find yourself taking a lot of photos of people and pets, rather than landscapes, this extra telephoto lens feels like a real selling point.

The nice thing about all three lenses is that they all take the same quality photo. Each is a 12-megapixel camera that has its own high-quality sensor, so you can expect a pretty decent photo nobody which lens you’re using (this is not the case for most other smartphones with a multi-camera system). Each of the three lenses is capable of shooting 4K video at 60fps, which is a nice feature for vloggers and videographers to have. It’s worth noting that despite the extra lenses, like the iPhone 11, the Pro’s Night Mode only really works while using the wide lens (you can technically use Night Mode with the ultra-wide lens, but it’s really just a blown-up shot taken by the wide lens.

Night Mode on the new iPhone 11 Pro is pretty incredible.

Aside from the size and triple-camera system, the third big selling point of the iPhone 11 Pro is its hardware. Its OLED display is significantly better than the LCD display of the iPhone 11, but it’s also better than the Super Retina display of last year’s iPhone XS; the new “Super Retina XDR” display is brighter (1,200 nits versus the iPhone XS’s 600 nits) with double the contrast ratio. It’s easy to get lost in the tech jargon, but the bottom line is this: iPhone 11 Pro’s display is the best and brightest display ever in a smartphone. So if you’re somebody who plays a lot of mobile games or streams lots of shows on your iPhone, that’s a good reason to upgrade to the Pro.

Battery life is the last big reason to upgrade to the Pro if you have an older iPhone. To date, the iPhone XR has been the gold standard of long-lasting iPhones, getting almost two days of juice, and the iPhone 11 Pros are almost at that level. Apple claims that both iPhone 11 Pros get four and five hours better than their predecessors, the iPhone XS and the iPhone XS Max, and it’s actually pretty noticeable. The secret to the improved battery life is, yes, the A13 Bionic chip helps with energy efficiency, but Apple also put a slightly larger battery in its newer phones. This is a pretty significant thing, as it also means that the new iPhones are ever-so-slightly heavier and thicker – Apple is sacrificing design for usability, which is actually a breath of fresh air.

There are a quick few things to add to round out the “good” features. Apple says the Face ID is 30-percent faster on the new iPhones and even better at recognizing your face when resting flat on a table; however, in the week I’ve had the phones I’ve actually had a difficult time telling the difference – it’s still fast. Apple also improved AirDrop on the new iPhones, allowing you to point your iPhone at other new iPhones and AirDrop files to whomever you’re pointing at (although the iPhones must have Apple’s new U1 chip and iOS 13). And, finally, Apple is including an 18-watt USB-C wall adapter and a USB-C to Lightning cable in the box, which makes the iPhone 11 Pro feel a little bit more “Pro.”

iPhone 11 Pro Review: The Best iPhone Ever, But a Hard Sell For Most

The most compelling and conspicuous feature of the iPhone 11 Pro is its triple-camera system, and after using it for the better part of the week, it’s definitely the best and most versatile set of cameras that Apple has ever put in any iPhone. The ultra-wide lens will feel like a pretty significant upgrade for anybody who has an older iPhone, but as the iPhone 11 has it too, it really comes down to the telephoto lens and how if you’ll take full advantage of it. This extra lens enables the two Pro models to take two different kinds of Portrait Mode photos, one that is really zoomed-in (which is similar to what the iPhone XS could do) and one that is more zoomed-out (which is exactly the same Portrait mode as the iPhone 11) for those who want to grab for background in the photo. If you find yourself taking a lot of photos of people and pets, rather than landscapes, this extra telephoto lens feels like a real selling point.

The nice thing about all three lenses is that they all take the same quality photo. Each is a 12-megapixel camera that has its own high-quality sensor, so you can expect a pretty decent photo nobody which lens you’re using (this is not the case for most other smartphones with a multi-camera system). Each of the three lenses is capable of shooting 4K video at 60fps, which is a nice feature for vloggers and videographers to have. It’s worth noting that despite the extra lenses, like the iPhone 11, the Pro’s Night Mode only really works while using the wide lens (you can technically use Night Mode with the ultra-wide lens, but it’s really just a blown-up shot taken by the wide lens.

Night Mode on the new iPhone 11 Pro is pretty incredible.

Aside from the size and triple-camera system, the third big selling point of the iPhone 11 Pro is its hardware. Its OLED display is significantly better than the LCD display of the iPhone 11, but it’s also better than the Super Retina display of last year’s iPhone XS; the new “Super Retina XDR” display is brighter (1,200 nits versus the iPhone XS’s 600 nits) with double the contrast ratio. It’s easy to get lost in the tech jargon, but the bottom line is this: iPhone 11 Pro’s display is the best and brightest display ever in a smartphone. So if you’re somebody who plays a lot of mobile games or streams lots of shows on your iPhone, that’s a good reason to upgrade to the Pro.

Battery life is the last big reason to upgrade to the Pro if you have an older iPhone. To date, the iPhone XR has been the gold standard of long-lasting iPhones, getting almost two days of juice, and the iPhone 11 Pros are almost at that level. Apple claims that both iPhone 11 Pros get four and five hours better than their predecessors, the iPhone XS and the iPhone XS Max, and it’s actually pretty noticeable. The secret to the improved battery life is, yes, the A13 Bionic chip helps with energy efficiency, but Apple also put a slightly larger battery in its newer phones. This is a pretty significant thing, as it also means that the new iPhones are ever-so-slightly heavier and thicker – Apple is sacrificing design for usability, which is actually a breath of fresh air.

There are a quick few things to add to round out the “good” features. Apple says the Face ID is 30-percent faster on the new iPhones and even better at recognizing your face when resting flat on a table; however, in the week I’ve had the phones I’ve actually had a difficult time telling the difference – it’s still fast. Apple also improved AirDrop on the new iPhones, allowing you to point your iPhone at other new iPhones and AirDrop files to whomever you’re pointing at (although the iPhones must have Apple’s new U1 chip and iOS 13). And, finally, Apple is including an 18-watt USB-C wall adapter and a USB-C to Lightning cable in the box, which makes the iPhone 11 Pro feel a little bit more “Pro.”

The Straume Weekend House Literally Came After The Storm

A storm brews. It lets out, causing havoc in its wake, leaving ruin after its trail. But from brokenness comes a chance to rebuild. Or make something even better. That’s exactly the origin story of the Straume Weekend House.

Here, you have a structure built after a storm washed away a deserted warehouse. The timber-clad home sits on a rocky outcropping on the coast of Norway’s Remøya. The new house shares the same footprint as the original. Built completely off-site, it boasts seven steel frames and looks like a futuristic but still quaint barnhouse.

When empty, the building takes on an almost monolithic aesthetic, with the wooden shutters covering the interior. These slide open when the space becomes occupied, unveiling glazed panels and inviting spectacular views of the nearby fjords inside. Indoors, you’ll find plenty of wood set in a mostly minimalist aesthetic. The austerity mixes will with the texture of the wood throughout the space, injecting a sense of homeliness in contrast with the stark plainness of the rest of the elements.

To make something beautiful out of a tragedy involves a great deal of imagination. And also a great deal of optimism. The storm that hit the old warehouse was tragic, but without it, the designers couldn’t have sewn beauty out of ruin. The best kind of architecture finds purpose, meaning, and wonder despite the circumstances. The Straume Weekend House stands as a refined example of that, gleaming as a beacon of hope after a terrible natural happenstance.

MORE HERE

Photos courtesy of Knut Hjeltnes

What Is Barrel Finished Whiskey and Why Is Everybody Making It?

Making whiskey is closer to designing clothes than building the new iPhone. The whiskey of today is more varied, more plentiful and likely of a higher quality than it has ever been, but it is still whiskey. The years-long process required to create whiskey means innovation comes slow, but when distilleries latch on to something new, they go all-in. In recent years, that something new is barrel finishing, the practice of dumping mature whiskey into new barrels for a short period of time with the intent of imbuing the whiskey with touches of something different. The technique is not unique to one type of whiskey or one type of distiller (though it is somewhat more popular with craft distillers) and mashbill, maturation and barrel type matching is essentially endless. But, like any experiment, not all turn out for the better. From rum to Syrah to orange curaçao, here are recent examples that hit the mark.

Chivas Regal Mizunara

Mizunara oak grows at half the pace and covers much less ground than its American or French counterparts, and it’s much more porous (and therefore prone to leaking). This adds up to an extremely expensive barrel (in 2018, Wine Enthusiast reported a single barrel costs more than $6,000). Chivas’ scotch finished for a few months in Mizunara is still predominantly scotch, but its hints of coconut and sandalwood only come from one place.

High West Yippee Ki-Yay

High West makes weird whiskey. The Utah distillery uses rye whiskeys from two to 16 years of age in this blend, and finished the whole batch in former vermouth and Syrah barrels. There is nothing on the liquor store shelf to compare it to.

Bellemeade Honey Cask Bourbon

The San Francisco World Spirits Competition’s “Best Special Barrel-Finished Bourbon” of 2019 is a pun. In distilling patois, the honey barrel is a cask of whiskey so perfectly balanced in age and location in a rickhouse that it is the platonic ideal of a whiskey barrel. Bellemeade’s Honey Cask Bourbon takes it literally, finishing its barrel strength bourbon in casks used to store honey.

Blood Oath Pact No. 5

Created by a food scientist with more than 20 years of whiskey blending experience, Blood Oath releases, called “Pacts,” are all different and all put a premium on barrel finishing. The fifth pact is a blend of 13-year-old bourbon, 11-year-old wheated bourbon and 8-year-old bourbon finished in Caribbean rum barrels. Expect something a bit sweeter than you’re used to.

Sagamore Spirit Port Finish Rye Whiskey

Port-finished whiskeys are more common than most barrel finishes, but this one is easily the most talked about of late. Winner of a few “Best Rye Whiskey” awards, Sagamore Spirit’s ported rye leans heavily into the jam, plum-like qualities of a good port while its spicy rye base still cuts through.

WhistlePig The Boss Hog, Spirit of Mauve

WhistlePig’s Boss Hog series is the Canadian rye whiskey sourcing masters highest-end whiskey. A 13-year-old straight rye finished in ex-Calvados barrels. Calvados, a pear or apple brandy distilled from cider, is best known for its flavors attachment to the land it’s produced on. The result in this case is a mature, easy-sipping rye with a swell of apple on the nose.

Parker’s Heritage Collection 12th Edition

This won’t be easy to find. Heaven Hill Distillery’s Parker’s whiskey releases annually and usually sells out shortly after, but if you’re able to track down last year’s release, you’re in for a treat. Classic Kentucky bourbon finished in former Orange Curaçao barrels, this is about as strange a barrel finish as you’ll find. Expect an enormous citrusy pop with a slightly bitter followthrough.

Note: Purchasing products through our links may earn us a portion of the sale, which supports our editorial team’s mission. Learn more here.

The Trials and Triumphs of Overlanding Across America in the Ford Ranger FX4

Going on an overland adventure across the United States is easier than most people think. Stock four-wheel-drive vehicles are more capable than ever; GPS tracks and maps are available online; automotive roof tents make the nights more comfortable than ever. It makes it so easy, you might even think about taking your whole family along as you attempt a 3,500-mile trip along the Continental Divide from Mexico to Canada would not only check it off your bucket list. Which is exactly what photographer Olivier de Vaulx did. 

The Milky Way seems so close it’s almost unreal. Even the most advanced computer-generated images couldn’t approach the complexity of the starry night above our heads.

We’re in New Mexico, on the first night of our Continental Divide journey, laying down on the comfortable mattress of our roof tents and enjoying a show that no movie theater will ever be able to provide. It’s only been a few hours since we started at the border between the U.S. and Mexico at the Antelope Wells port of entry, but we already feel thousand of miles away from our real lives.

My two teenagers didn’t get any cell service the whole day and never complained. Instead, they drove our two Ford Ranger FX4 pickup trucks through the red dirt of New Mexico’s backcountry, which is more fun than any video game. As the day ended, the adventure already felt like a success. But there were still 3,500 miles to go.

Warming Up in New Mexico

Kevin Glassett, avid motorcyclist and retired Hewlett-Packard engineer, put together a daily driving route for our GPS, with paved and off-road options displayed in different colors on our Trail Tech Voyager Pro. The little arrow proves hypnotic; with no risk of getting lost, we tend to drive as much as we can. (Furthermore, since the temperature outside is well above 85 degrees, nobody minds seating in an air-conditioned vehicle.)

The EcoBoost engines of the two Rangers are sipping fuel as slowly as old British lords sip their tea, giving us enough range to travel more than 250 miles a day. The power delivered by the turbos and the smooth ride provided by the FX4 heavy-duty suspensions sometimes even pushes us to switch into rally mode, speeding across the red dirt like professional WRC racers. But being here as a family instead of with a bunch of friends reminds you quickly that overlanding is more about the distance traveled than the adrenaline rush, and we quickly fall back to a more reasonable pace. (Even if the truck didn’t mind going fast.)

As the sun sets, it’s time to start what will become our daily routine: Finding a free camping spot for the night on BLM land, setting up our Tepui Explorer Kukenam and Autana roof tents and cooking some easy-but-healthy meals. Using two plastic coolers and a gas stove, we whip up recipes with enough proteins, carbs and veggies to call this trip a gastronomic experience. GSI Outdoors cooking kits help us keep everything organized for dinner and breakfast, transforming what would be a duty in the army into a genuine pleasure. Once the dishes are washed (using melted ice from the cooler instead of wasting drinkable water), it’s time for a card game or some night photography of the Milky Way. Hello, vacation mode.

Catching Cold in Colorado

The transition between New Mexico and Colorado is somewhat brutal. The elevation rises as we reach the Golden State, and with five times more snow this winter than in previous years, most of the passes in the Rocky Mountains are still closed — as we discover first hand while trying to go over Stunner Pass, just to find a big patch of snow at the summit.

While the first two patches of snow take us only a few attempts to go through, thanks to the high clearance of the Ranger FX4s and the help of the Maxtrax MKII traction mats, the last one proves more difficult. Stuck in the snow, the first Ranger stalls, high-centered and unable to free itself. That’s why we travel with two trucks: The second Ford is able to pull out the unlucky vehicle loose in no time.

The snow being deep as it is, we could have decided to go around by (illegally) driving off the trail. Instead, we keep the overland attitude alive and start digging a path through the snow with a shovel, the whole family taking relays to clear the way. (Turns out overlanding can be a great workout.) After a few hours, we finally make it to the other side…just in time to be welcomed by a hail storm. Colorado is a tough place.

Thankfully, there’s also plenty of sweet opportunities in the state: Hiking and sledding along the snowy summits of Cinnamon Pass, the discovery of old gold mines, paddleboarding sessions in the crystal-clear lakes and watching wildlife such as deer, squirrels, foxes, marmots, moose and bears.

Going Back in Time in Wyoming

The border between states once again brings a huge geographic change. The high mountains are still in the distance, but we now drive on easy trails in the plains. Using our GPS’ ability to show the position of the other vehicle on their screens, the two trucks follow each other at a safe distance, so the second can avoid being blinded by the thick dust raised by the first crew. The long-range Midland MXT115 MicroMobile radios make chatting easy regardless of the distance, helping prevent collisions with upcoming traffic, cattle on the trails, or to request some photo stops.

The wildlife is more abundant than ever; the pronghorns make this American backcountry look like Africa’s savanna, but the bald eagles remind us that we’re still in the U.S. Raised in crowded Southern California, the two teenagers find the emptiness of these vast plains a bit worrisome at first, but they quickly get used to the feeling of freedom that comes with while travelling on this ocean of grass. For dinner, we grill meat like real cowboys, then climb in our comfortable roof tents for a quiet and restful night.

Crossing Wyoming on backcountry roads makes you feel like you’ve gone a century back in time, with barns and farms everywhere along with actual cowboys still making a living off herding cattle. On the sidewalks of the small towns where we stop to buy groceries and water, people wear leather boots and Stetson hats, and the rodeos are organized for the locals, not tourists.

The only issue that has to be addressed is — like in New Mexico, Colorado and later in Montana — the annoying presence of mosquitos. At sunset, it’s like playing roulette: Randomly enough, they can be nowhere to be seen, or everywhere at once. In the latter case, we hide inside the roof tents, the thick fabric an effective shield against the fury of these vampires.

Rock Crawling in Montana

After a couple hours zipping though Idaho, it’s time for the Rangers to confront the harsh reality of Montana. The landscape is dominated by mighty forests, where fallen logs number in the thousands and trails are often damaged by the long winter. If that weren’t enough, bear activity and washed-out trails provide plenty of opportunities for “road closed” signs to appear suddenly around the next corner. Even when the trails are open, it doesn’t mean that they’re maintained; potholes, deep ruts and boulders are sure to challenge our Ford Rangers. At one point, we cover just three miles in four hours.

In these tough conditions, the compact size of the Ford Ranger is a real advantage, since it gives it the ability to sneak between trees that would have stymied big brother F-150. River crossings filled with mud and deep ruts prove opportunities for teamwork: One person behind the wheel, transmission in 4-Low (and rock crawling mode set at low speed, usually); three spotters with hand-held radios to give directions. Doing this, we travel through the slipperiest conditions like seasoned pros.

If these technical sections are fun, the abundance of potholes in the backcountry roads makes the days feel longer. We often don’t finish until night, the Baja Design LED lights helping the (surprisingly good) headlights drill into the darkness of the forest in the quest for the perfect camping spot. The stock shocks provide a quiet ride, though; there are no creaks or rattles to be heard inside the cabins. We’re a long way from the carriages used on the Oregon Trail.

Bienvenue au Canada

Reaching the actual border is incredible: An aluminum pole planted in the middle of the forest marks the separation between the two countries. There’s nobody around; we enjoy the moment by ourselves just as the sun disappears behind the tree line. We couldn’t have asked for better timing to celebrate the end of this incredible trip.

After 3,500 miles, mostly on dirt, we not only followed the Continental Divide across the whole United States, but tightened the bonds between members of our family. Spending the whole summer together, helping each other with driving, navigating, cooking, cleaning, and more, we shared a once-in-a-lifetime experience which made us feel more connected to our country, as well as hooked on the concept of overlanding. The United States is a wonderful playground — and there are still thousands of trails waiting to be explored.

The Complete Buying Guide to the Blancpain Fifty Fathoms Watch

Given the hype, you’d think Rolex or Omega released the first dive watch, but the Swiss firm Blancpain was right there neck-in-neck with Rolex in 1953 with the release of its famed Fifty Fathoms.

The French Navy’s elite SCUBA squad, called the Nageur de Combat, had specified a number of features for the watch: a locking timing bezel to assure dive times didn’t get overextended, an auto-winding movement to reduce wear on the crown threads, and a leak warning system — in this case a clever dot on the dial that would turn red if moisture was present. Dubbed the Fifty Fathoms, this watch became the functional and aesthetic template for countless dive watches to follow.

By the 1970s, Blancpain had bent the aesthetics of the Fifty Fathoms toward the disco-era’s blingy vibes, all in an attempt to keep pace with a new breed of watches loosely called “luxury sport watches.” The Audemars Piguet Royal Oak sparked the trend, but the Fifty-Fathoms in its 70s get-up didn’t endure the rise of electronic quartz watches in the 1980s.

A few acquisitions of Blancpain went by before new management released the Fifty Fathoms again in 2007, this time using the original designs as inspiration. Watch fans the world over swooned. Since 2007, the Fifty Fathoms collection has swelled to include over 70 watches, making this one of the largest and most varied dive watch collections available today. Models range from 1950s-styled look-alikes, to large modern affairs, to watches with mechanical complications — and there’s even a handsome tribute to those blingy 70s models.

Common Features of Modern Fifty Fathoms
-In-house mechanical movements
-Silicone balance springs
-Unidirectional sapphire or ceramic timing bezels
-At least 300 meters (30 bar) of water resistance
-Relatively thin cases (for a dive watch) coming in around 13mm on most models

The Vintage-Inspired Models

These watches tend to look more like the original Fifty Fathoms did back in the 1950s, and to accomplish this, Blancpain uses beautiful, domed bezel inserts in sapphire and/or ceramic, traditionally shaped lugs, and dial markings that remind one of yesteryear.

Barakuda

Limited to 500 pieces, this watch has vintage vibes for days. The dial’s aged lume is perfectly matched to the lume on the domed ceramic bezel, and the bits of red remind us that this is a sports watch.
Case Diameter: 40mm
Movement: 1151 Automatic
MSRP: 14,100

Bathyscaphe Limited Edition (with Hodinkee)

At 10.77mm thick, this watch is a marvel of dive watch technology. The story here is minimalism: no date, not fussy extra markers, and a ceramic bezel insert with liquid metal numerals that’s going to look great no matter how hard you beat on it. Only 100 were made, and they’re all gone, so you’ll have to look to the secondary market.
Case Diameter: 38mm
Movement: 1153 automatic
MSRP: $9,900

500 Fathoms & 500 Fathoms GMT

Vintage looks, yes, but everything else about these watches is reaching into the future. With 100 meters of water resistance, an enormous case, a “decompression” (or helium escape) valve, titanium case, and a winding rotor in the shape of a ship’s propellor, these limited editions are truly unto themselves.
Case Diameter: 48mm
Movement: 1315 (standard), 5215 (GMT)
MSRP: Inquire for price

Fifty Fathoms Automatique 40mm

This collection of watches is perhaps the quintessential vintage-inspired FF. You can get a variety of straps and/or bracelets, and there are a few colorways available, including the Ocean Commitment model, which represents Blancpain’s contribution to ocean conservation. That red dot harkens back to the original FF that sported a leak gauge, which is now an iconic feature for the brand.
Case Diameter: 40.3mm
Movement: 1151 atuomatic
MSRP: Inquire for price

Fifty Fathoms Automatique 45mm

Drop that leak gauge, add a five millimeters, but keep the rest of the vintage vibes intact, and you’ve got this modern-sized model that’s going to hang tough with today’s bigger divers. Want some gold on your wrist? How about a blacked-out model? Some fancy dial engraving? How about a Nageur de Combat special edition with vintage round markers? Blancpain delivers with this lineup.
Case Diameter: 45mm
Movement: 1315 automatic
MSRP: Inquire for price

Fifty Fathoms Grand Date

Take the 45mm model above and add in a large date aperture at 6-o’clock, and you’ve got a dive watch that’s sporting a complication typically reserved for dress watches. It’s not a common combination, to say the least, but there’s something compelling about this nod to haute horlogerie in the context of a large dive watch.
Case Diameter: 45mm
Movement: 6918B
MSRP: $17,500

Fifty Fathoms Chronographe Flyback

A flyback chronograph allows you to reset the chronograph’s timing without stopping the watch, for instant lap resets. It’s a complication that takes some serious work to build well, and Blancpain’s in house movement does the job excellently. It can also be useful underwater for timing safety stops and any other intervals one might want to measure.
Case Diameter: 45mm
Movement: F185
MSRP: $17,800

Fifty Fathoms Chronographe Flyback Quantième Complet

With the weekday, date and month on display along with the moon’s phases, you’ll get the big picture of time. Meanwhile, the flyback chronograph will provide repeating snapshots of the instant you’re in with dead accuracy. All that in a dive watch adds up to a very special wrist watch.
Case Diameter: 45mm
Movement: 66BF8
MSRP: $24,700

Tourbillon 8 Jours

Tourbillions in dive watches are a rare breed, and one providing eight days of power displayed on a power reserve gauge, even more so. In a tourbillion movement, the balance wheel rotates within a cage at a set rate. This is a very old (and rather complicated) solution to negating the effects of gravity on a movement, and it’s one of the most fascinating movements to watch in action. It’s also one of the more difficult complications to execute, making this watch one of Blancpain’s most impressive.
Case Diameter: 45mm
Movement: 25A
MSRP: Inquire for price

The X Fathoms

This is one of those watches that may make you marvel at human ingenuity. It’s massive, but there’s good reason: the watch houses a mechanical depth gauge with two depth scales, a max-depth marker, and a reset button, which itself bests most SCUBA depth gauges. It also has a 5-minute countdown timer, which is no small feat of watchmaking, and a helium escape valve. At 24mm thick and a full 55.65mm wide, its going to wear like a modern dive computer.
Case Diameter: 55.65mm
Movement: 9918B
MSRP: $40,700

The Fifty Fathoms Jour Date 70s

Harkening back to those disco-era models, the Jour Date 70s is a stunning refinement on what might have originally been an overcompensation on Blancpain’s part. Restraining the touches of red and the overall bling to tasteful levels, the Jour Date 70s is the dressiest of the Fifty Fathoms, making it the perfect companion for those dive trips where dinner is served on white table cloths.
Case Diameter: 43mm
Movement: 1315DD (day date)
MSRP: $12,700

The Modern Fifty Fathoms

Let’s not make the mistake of thinking that the vintage-inspired models above are somehow technologically inferior to the modern styled Fifty-Fathoms we are about to examine. All of the Fifty-Fathoms are superior machines, built in-house, and ready to perform excellently in and around the water. The modern models are simply designed with a current aesthetic, and as such they possess an understated refinement and, because they’re so beautifully finished, a bit of panache. The dot markers and syringe hands, however, add a nice dose of vintage Blancpain style.

Fifty Fathoms Bathyscaphe

A straightforward dive watch with a date window at 4:30, this is a no-fuss diver that’s going to look perfect with a suit or jeans-n-tee. The 1315 in-house movement is one of Blancpain’s staples. There are ceramic cases, steel ones, and gold available, with only very slight differences in size.
Case Diameter: 43.6mm (grey ceramic) 42mm (steel)
Movement: 1315
MSRP: $12,860

Bathyscaphe 38mm

Though Blancpain bills these as women’s watches, we all know that 38mm can be a classy size on any man, and for those with smaller wrists, it can be the perfect fit. Don’t let those old-school gender categorizers push you around — these are simply great watches in a versatile and increasingly popular size. Also, Blancpain puts the white dial with white bezel insert on candy-colored straps (presumably for women), but throw that on a burly brown suede, a shiny croc, or a camo NATO strap, and it’ll really pop with a hip masculine style.
Case Diameter: 38mm
Movement: 1150
MSRP: $9,500

Fifty Fathoms Bathyscaphe Quantième Annuel

Add in an annual calendar to the Bathyscaphe, and we’re entering the world of complications while keeping true to the rugged dive watch heritage of the Fifty-Fathoms. Few companies are going into this territory, and Blancpain does so with signature grace.
Case Diameter: 43mm
Movement: 6054P
MSRP: Inquire for price

Fifty Fathoms Quantième Complet Phase de Lune

This watch is a wonderful combination of diving ruggedness and the haute-horological complexity in one great looking package. The complete calendar will display day of week, month, and the date in a lovely pointer array while the lunar cycles will play out in the blue aperture.
Case Diameter: 42mm
Movement: 6654P
MSRP: $14,800

Fifty Fathoms Bathyscaphe Chronographe Flyback

Featuring an incredible complication, a form factor that’s modern but classic, and proportions that will never go out of style for a diver, the Chronographe Flyback may be one of the most compelling offerings in the Fifty Fathoms lineup. Get it in gray ceramic for an edgier modern experience, or in the very cool brushed blue ceramic of the Ocean Commitment version to support ocean cleanup. Steel models will look and feel more traditional.
Case Diameter: 43.6mm (ceramic)
Movement: F385
MSRP: $17,200

Note: Purchasing products through our links may earn us a portion of the sale, which supports our editorial team’s mission. Learn more here.

Bell & Ross Introduces BR05 Collection

Drawing inspiration from several existing Bell & Ross watches, the new BR05 collection features a 40mm stainless case with those signature rounded corners as well as Roman Numerals seen on earlier BR01 dials. This Swiss-made automatic is powered by a caliber BR-CAL.321 movement. Several variations of dial color and straps are on offer, including a skeleton dial model and one in rose gold in addition to black, grey, and blue steel.

Bang & Olufsen Introduce Limited Beosound 1 New York Edition Speaker

Inspired by the New York City skyline, the limited Beosound 1 New York Edition is a conical aluminum home speaker from Bang & Olufsen’s ever-expanding Beosound lineup. It offers room-filling 360º sound and features the brand’s signature Acoustic Lens technology for crisp, precision mids & highs.  Stream your media via bluetooth or Google Chromecast, Apple Airplay 2, and other services. Only 1200 of this special speaker will be made.

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LaCie’s Rugged Series SSDs are Faster & Tougher than Ever

Video & field photography pros love LaCie’s rugged portable SSDs. With the introduction of 3 new designs, they’ve got even more to love. LaCie says the brands Rugged SSD, Rugged SSD Pro, and Rugged BOSS SSD models are all “designed to help Media & Entertainment professionals manage the huge volumes of data their workflows create.” All three boast IP67 waterproof rating, 3-meter drop tolerance, and 2-ton crush resistance. Transfer speeds range from 950mb/sec-2500mb/sec with Thunderbolt 3 connection. The BOSS SSD model also features a built-in LCD screen & SD card slot.

Today in Gear: Stress-Free Engagement Ring Shopping, a Prized Japanese Whiskey’s Potential Swan Song & More

Today in Gear is our daily roundup of all the latest product announcements, drops and deals. Comments or concerns? We’d love to hear from you at tig@gearpatrol.com.


Buying an engagement ring is a pivotal moment. It can also be incredibly stressful, between sourcing a diamond within your price range, picking a style and the mystery of whether or not you got a quality product. But it doesn’t have to be this way. Couple, the first luxury brand selling lab-grown diamonds, can help to make the process not only easier but actually enjoyable. The brand’s lab-grown diamonds are not only atomically identical to mined diamonds, but they are 35 percent larger for your money. The best part? Couple also offers a Diamond Concierge service that can help you to customize your own design and pick a stone that fits your budget and your style.

New & Noteworthy Releases

This World War II-Era, Military Panerai Dive Watch Is Up for Sale

This World War II-Era, Military Panerai Dive Watch Is Up for Sale

Manufactured around 1943, this military dive watch is just one of many vintage Panerais on sale at Oliver Smith Jewelers.

Chevrolet May Be Planning to Destroy the Ford Raptor

Chevrolet May Be Planning to Destroy the Ford Raptor

Ford’s toughest truck has owned its niche of the pickup truck market since it debuted in 2010. Chevy might change that.

Did a NASA-Engineered Supplement Just Help Shatter the Half Marathon World Record?

Did a NASA-Engineered Supplement Just Help Shatter the Half Marathon World Record?

When Geoffrey Kamworor set a new half marathon record time of 58:01, race commentators speculated that he did it with a special drink.

Toyota Sells the Vintage Land Cruiser–Based Truck of Your Dreams, Just Not In the U.S.

Toyota Sells the Vintage Land Cruiser–Based Truck of Your Dreams, Just Not In the U.S.

South Africans may get the coolest Toyota truck on the global market.

This MacBook Charger Is So Tiny It Can Fit In Your Pocket

This MacBook Charger Is So Tiny It Can Fit In Your Pocket

The ideal travel companion for your MacBook Pro or MacBook Air.

This Classically Styled Watch Looks Totally Different from Most Modern Chronographs

This Classically Styled Watch Looks Totally Different from Most Modern Chronographs

The new Yacht Timer watch from Frederique Constant is made for timing yacht races with a clean, handsome interpretation of the chronograph.

This Could Be Your Last Chance to Try One of Japan’s Most Famous Whiskies

This Could Be Your Last Chance to Try One of Japan’s Most Famous Whiskies

Hibiki 17 is among the most-awarded Japnaese whiskies ever. Here’s where to get it before it’s gone forever.

Is Nissan About to Reveal the Electric Car Everyone Really Wants?

Is Nissan About to Reveal the Electric Car Everyone Really Wants?

300-mile range, a practical size, and 0-60 mph in less than five seconds.


Fresh Deals

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Gillette Fusion 5 Razor Blad Refills
Save 30%: Now at Amazon, you can save 30 percent on some annoyingly expensive Gillette Fusion5 razor blade refills. This is a great chance to stock up if you shave regularly with a Fusion5 ProGlide razor. Each cartridge features five of Gillette’s thinnest blades (for a more comfortable shave) and a precision trimmer to help groom hard-to-reach areas. Normally $48 for 12 cartridges, the package costs just $34 today. — John Zientek


Roomba i7+ Robo-Vacuum
Save $100: When we reviewed iRobot’s i7+ robo-vacuum, we called it the best robo-vacuum you could buy. But we did so with one caveat: price. The full setup — which includes the vacuum and its charging and trash-dumping base — starts at $1,099. Today on Amazon, the cost is slightly more wallet-friendly.

Marked down $100, the i7+ is the first robo-vac to empty its dust contents for you. Once it senses its dustbin is full, it locks itself into its home base and deposits the trash inside (the base can hold around 30 Roombas worth of trash). It also retains “mission” data every time you send it out to clean, and it uses that data to more quickly clean your home on future missions. It’s all controlled through iRobot’s smartphone app. — Will Price

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Seiko SRPC91 “Save the Ocean”
Save 27%: Released in 2018, the Seiko SRPC91 “Save the Ocean” is a Turtle-based special edition diver produced in partnership with Fabien Cousteau, Jaques Yves Cousteau’s grandson and and himself an ocean explorer and conservationist. It features a special blue gradient dial meant to recall the ocean housed in a 45mm stainless steel case, a Hardlex crystal, rubber dive strap and the Seiko automatic 4R36 movement with day-date indication. In partnership with Cousteau, Seiko will dedicate a portion of the proceeds from sales of the SRPC91 to Cousteau’s Ocean Learning Center, dedicated to promoting ocean health and conservation.
— Oren Hartov
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G&L Limited Edition Tribute ASAT Classic Bluesboy Guitar
Save 33%:Today at Guitar Center, you can pick up a G&L Limited Edition Tribute ASAT Classic Bluesboy guitar for 33 percent off. This familiar guitar features the iconic body shape that put Fender on the map paired with a 22-fret maple neck. The bridge is unique and includes 6 individual brass saddles for accurate intonation and added sustain.

The Tribute ASAT Classic has a G&L humbucker in the neck position and a crisp G&L single-coil in the bridge position. This instrument features a limited-edition Mint Green finish and a 3-ply white pickguard.

Now at Guitar Center, this $450 guitar costs just $300. It’s practically a steal, so act fast — the deal will be gone before you know it. — John Zientek

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Wolverine Boots
Save 25%: If you’ve been meaning to invest in a new pair of boots but haven’t found the right pair, Wolverine is currently making a compelling case for its hard-wearing styles. Now at Zappos, a bunch of boots from the Michigan-based brand are 25 percent off: choose from American-made lace-up styles including the iconic 1000 Mile boot and the go-anywhere Montague Boot boot. Many sizes are currently available, but with such a substantial discount, they won’t be for long. — John Zientek
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Nike Epic React Flyknit 2
Save $50: When Nike announced React foam in 2017, it promised the impossible: foam that’s lightweight, durable, and provides ample cushioning and bouncy energy return. Nike’s materials scientists tested more than 400 chemical combinations until they found the perfect mix, which the first delivered in basketball footwear. But React found its stride after Nike injected it into the Epic React Flyknit, a running shoe that gained a considerable following throughout 2018.

It wasn’t surprising that the Epic React Flyknit 2, released earlier this year, would also be a success. It features the foam that’s embedded in its name as well as Nike’s sock-like knitted upper, Flyknit. But for the follow-up, Nike tweaked that part of the shoe’s construction: the upper is stretchier, more supportive, and comfier with a lower heel cuff. Right now, the shoe is $50 off on Nike’s website. — Tanner Bowden

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Cole Haan Suede Bomber Jacket
Save 50%: If you want to score a classic leather jacket for an incredible deal, head over to Nordstrom Rack today. Currently, you can save 50 percent on a few suede bomber jackets from Cole Haan. The zip-up style features two hand pockets, a cotton-linen lining and a ribbed collar and cuffs. Available in olive, navy and tan, this $500 jacket now costs just $250. — John Zientek
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Apple Watch Series 4
Save up to $100: Apple officially announced the Apple Watch Series 5 last week and, in doing so, also stopped selling the Series 4, presumably because it’s slightly too similar to the new flagship offering, with the exceptions the Series 5 has an always-on display and a new sensor (a magnetometer) that allows it to work as a compass, showing you which way you’re facing while using Apple Maps. The Series 5 also comes in titanium models, although those are significantly more expensive. That said, it’s a great time to shop for the Apple Watch Series 4 because it’s on sal. It also has a bunch of the newer features that the Series 3 lacks, including fall detection, a built-in EKG and a variety of fitness features. If you shop on Amazon right now, you can buy a Series 4 with cellular for as little as $399, which is $100 off. If you don’t need built-in LTE, which I’d argue that most people don’t need (nor do they want to pay the extra $10 each month on their phone bill), you can get a pretty good deal on GPS-only models of the Series 4, too. — Tucker Bowe |


Today on Gear Patrol

This Scottish Company’s Affordable Watches Are Unlike Anything Else on the Market

This Scottish Company’s Affordable Watches Are Unlike Anything Else on the Market

anOrdain has been making affordable enamel-dialed watches since late 2018, but it took the company 3 years to perfect its process.

Why Every Kitchen Absolutely Needs a Vacuum Sealer

Why Every Kitchen Absolutely Needs a Vacuum Sealer

Jimmy Papadopolous thinks everyone needs a vacuum sealer, a pair of weird Japanese knife sharpeners & more.

2019 Ford Mustang Bullitt Review: The Mustang You Really Ought to Want

2019 Ford Mustang Bullitt Review: The Mustang You Really Ought to Want

There are plenty of new Mustangs to choose from these days—but the Bullitt hits the sweet spot.

Galaxy Note10+ Review: Big, Beautiful, Best in Class

Galaxy Note10+ Review: Big, Beautiful, Best in Class

The Note10+ is a real powerhouse of a phone and if it has a primary flaw it is only that it may be more phone than you need or want to pay for.

The Best Habits and Products for a Safe, Smooth Shave

The Best Habits and Products for a Safe, Smooth Shave

Blade replacement, cleaning, post-shave hygiene and storage.

Test, Learn and Shop at the Stocked Product Marketplace in NYC

Test, Learn and Shop at the Stocked Product Marketplace in NYC

On Day Two of Stocked, there will be even more opportunities to learn more about products and shop them IRL — and after 12 PM, it’s completely open to the public.

This Is the Best Affordable Sports Car You Can Buy Right Now

This Is the Best Affordable Sports Car You Can Buy Right Now

Our Editor’s Pick for the best affordable sports car you can buy right now is the Mazda MX-5 Miata.

Discover the Gear That Inspires Chris Burkard at Stocked 2019

Discover the Gear That Inspires Chris Burkard at Stocked 2019

We’re excited to announce that adventure photographer and documentarian Chris Burkard will be headlining day one of Gear Patrol’s upcoming event, Stocked.

Note: Purchasing products through our links may earn us a portion of the sale, which supports our editorial team’s mission. Learn more here.

Today in Gear: Stress-Free Engagement Ring Shopping, a Prized Japanese Whisky’s Potential Swan Song & More

Today in Gear is our daily roundup of all the latest product announcements, drops and deals. Comments or concerns? We’d love to hear from you at tig@gearpatrol.com.


Buying an engagement ring is a pivotal moment. It can also be incredibly stressful, between sourcing a diamond within your price range, picking a style and the mystery of whether or not you got a quality product. But it doesn’t have to be this way. Couple, the first luxury brand selling lab-grown diamonds, can help to make the process not only easier but actually enjoyable. The brand’s lab-grown diamonds are not only atomically identical to mined diamonds, but they are 35 percent larger for your money. The best part? Couple also offers a Diamond Concierge service that can help you to customize your own design and pick a stone that fits your budget and your style.

New & Noteworthy Releases

This World War II-Era, Military Panerai Dive Watch Is Up for Sale

This World War II-Era, Military Panerai Dive Watch Is Up for Sale

Manufactured around 1943, this military dive watch is just one of many vintage Panerais on sale at Oliver Smith Jewelers.

Chevrolet May Be Planning to Destroy the Ford Raptor

Chevrolet May Be Planning to Destroy the Ford Raptor

Ford’s toughest truck has owned its niche of the pickup truck market since it debuted in 2010. Chevy might change that.

Did a NASA-Engineered Supplement Just Help Shatter the Half Marathon World Record?

Did a NASA-Engineered Supplement Just Help Shatter the Half Marathon World Record?

When Geoffrey Kamworor set a new half marathon record time of 58:01, race commentators speculated that he did it with a special drink.

Toyota Sells the Vintage Land Cruiser–Based Truck of Your Dreams, Just Not In the U.S.

Toyota Sells the Vintage Land Cruiser–Based Truck of Your Dreams, Just Not In the U.S.

South Africans may get the coolest Toyota truck on the global market.

This MacBook Charger Is So Tiny It Can Fit In Your Pocket

This MacBook Charger Is So Tiny It Can Fit In Your Pocket

The ideal travel companion for your MacBook Pro or MacBook Air.

This Classically Styled Watch Looks Totally Different from Most Modern Chronographs

This Classically Styled Watch Looks Totally Different from Most Modern Chronographs

The new Yacht Timer watch from Frederique Constant is made for timing yacht races with a clean, handsome interpretation of the chronograph.

This Could Be Your Last Chance to Try One of Japan’s Most Famous Whiskies

This Could Be Your Last Chance to Try One of Japan’s Most Famous Whiskies

Hibiki 17 is among the most-awarded Japnaese whiskies ever. Here’s where to get it before it’s gone forever.

Is Nissan About to Reveal the Electric Car Everyone Really Wants?

Is Nissan About to Reveal the Electric Car Everyone Really Wants?

300-mile range, a practical size, and 0-60 mph in less than five seconds.


Fresh Deals

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Gillette Fusion 5 Razor Blad Refills
Save 30%: Now at Amazon, you can save 30 percent on some annoyingly expensive Gillette Fusion5 razor blade refills. This is a great chance to stock up if you shave regularly with a Fusion5 ProGlide razor. Each cartridge features five of Gillette’s thinnest blades (for a more comfortable shave) and a precision trimmer to help groom hard-to-reach areas. Normally $48 for 12 cartridges, the package costs just $34 today. — John Zientek


Roomba i7+ Robo-Vacuum
Save $100: When we reviewed iRobot’s i7+ robo-vacuum, we called it the best robo-vacuum you could buy. But we did so with one caveat: price. The full setup — which includes the vacuum and its charging and trash-dumping base — starts at $1,099. Today on Amazon, the cost is slightly more wallet-friendly.

Marked down $100, the i7+ is the first robo-vac to empty its dust contents for you. Once it senses its dustbin is full, it locks itself into its home base and deposits the trash inside (the base can hold around 30 Roombas worth of trash). It also retains “mission” data every time you send it out to clean, and it uses that data to more quickly clean your home on future missions. It’s all controlled through iRobot’s smartphone app. — Will Price

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Seiko SRPC91 “Save the Ocean”
Save 27%: Released in 2018, the Seiko SRPC91 “Save the Ocean” is a Turtle-based special edition diver produced in partnership with Fabien Cousteau, Jaques Yves Cousteau’s grandson and and himself an ocean explorer and conservationist. It features a special blue gradient dial meant to recall the ocean housed in a 45mm stainless steel case, a Hardlex crystal, rubber dive strap and the Seiko automatic 4R36 movement with day-date indication. In partnership with Cousteau, Seiko will dedicate a portion of the proceeds from sales of the SRPC91 to Cousteau’s Ocean Learning Center, dedicated to promoting ocean health and conservation.
— Oren Hartov
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G&L Limited Edition Tribute ASAT Classic Bluesboy Guitar
Save 33%:Today at Guitar Center, you can pick up a G&L Limited Edition Tribute ASAT Classic Bluesboy guitar for 33 percent off. This familiar guitar features the iconic body shape that put Fender on the map paired with a 22-fret maple neck. The bridge is unique and includes 6 individual brass saddles for accurate intonation and added sustain.

The Tribute ASAT Classic has a G&L humbucker in the neck position and a crisp G&L single-coil in the bridge position. This instrument features a limited-edition Mint Green finish and a 3-ply white pickguard.

Now at Guitar Center, this $450 guitar costs just $300. It’s practically a steal, so act fast — the deal will be gone before you know it. — John Zientek

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Wolverine Boots
Save 25%: If you’ve been meaning to invest in a new pair of boots but haven’t found the right pair, Wolverine is currently making a compelling case for its hard-wearing styles. Now at Zappos, a bunch of boots from the Michigan-based brand are 25 percent off: choose from American-made lace-up styles including the iconic 1000 Mile boot and the go-anywhere Montague Boot boot. Many sizes are currently available, but with such a substantial discount, they won’t be for long. — John Zientek
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Nike Epic React Flyknit 2
Save $50: When Nike announced React foam in 2017, it promised the impossible: foam that’s lightweight, durable, and provides ample cushioning and bouncy energy return. Nike’s materials scientists tested more than 400 chemical combinations until they found the perfect mix, which the first delivered in basketball footwear. But React found its stride after Nike injected it into the Epic React Flyknit, a running shoe that gained a considerable following throughout 2018.

It wasn’t surprising that the Epic React Flyknit 2, released earlier this year, would also be a success. It features the foam that’s embedded in its name as well as Nike’s sock-like knitted upper, Flyknit. But for the follow-up, Nike tweaked that part of the shoe’s construction: the upper is stretchier, more supportive, and comfier with a lower heel cuff. Right now, the shoe is $50 off on Nike’s website. — Tanner Bowden

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Cole Haan Suede Bomber Jacket
Save 50%: If you want to score a classic leather jacket for an incredible deal, head over to Nordstrom Rack today. Currently, you can save 50 percent on a few suede bomber jackets from Cole Haan. The zip-up style features two hand pockets, a cotton-linen lining and a ribbed collar and cuffs. Available in olive, navy and tan, this $500 jacket now costs just $250. — John Zientek
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Apple Watch Series 4
Save up to $100: Apple officially announced the Apple Watch Series 5 last week and, in doing so, also stopped selling the Series 4, presumably because it’s slightly too similar to the new flagship offering, with the exceptions the Series 5 has an always-on display and a new sensor (a magnetometer) that allows it to work as a compass, showing you which way you’re facing while using Apple Maps. The Series 5 also comes in titanium models, although those are significantly more expensive. That said, it’s a great time to shop for the Apple Watch Series 4 because it’s on sal. It also has a bunch of the newer features that the Series 3 lacks, including fall detection, a built-in EKG and a variety of fitness features. If you shop on Amazon right now, you can buy a Series 4 with cellular for as little as $399, which is $100 off. If you don’t need built-in LTE, which I’d argue that most people don’t need (nor do they want to pay the extra $10 each month on their phone bill), you can get a pretty good deal on GPS-only models of the Series 4, too. — Tucker Bowe |


Today on Gear Patrol

This Scottish Company’s Affordable Watches Are Unlike Anything Else on the Market

This Scottish Company’s Affordable Watches Are Unlike Anything Else on the Market

anOrdain has been making affordable enamel-dialed watches since late 2018, but it took the company 3 years to perfect its process.

Why Every Kitchen Absolutely Needs a Vacuum Sealer

Why Every Kitchen Absolutely Needs a Vacuum Sealer

Jimmy Papadopolous thinks everyone needs a vacuum sealer, a pair of weird Japanese knife sharpeners & more.

2019 Ford Mustang Bullitt Review: The Mustang You Really Ought to Want

2019 Ford Mustang Bullitt Review: The Mustang You Really Ought to Want

There are plenty of new Mustangs to choose from these days—but the Bullitt hits the sweet spot.

Galaxy Note10+ Review: Big, Beautiful, Best in Class

Galaxy Note10+ Review: Big, Beautiful, Best in Class

The Note10+ is a real powerhouse of a phone and if it has a primary flaw it is only that it may be more phone than you need or want to pay for.

The Best Habits and Products for a Safe, Smooth Shave

The Best Habits and Products for a Safe, Smooth Shave

Blade replacement, cleaning, post-shave hygiene and storage.

Test, Learn and Shop at the Stocked Product Marketplace in NYC

Test, Learn and Shop at the Stocked Product Marketplace in NYC

On Day Two of Stocked, there will be even more opportunities to learn more about products and shop them IRL — and after 12 PM, it’s completely open to the public.

This Is the Best Affordable Sports Car You Can Buy Right Now

This Is the Best Affordable Sports Car You Can Buy Right Now

Our Editor’s Pick for the best affordable sports car you can buy right now is the Mazda MX-5 Miata.

Discover the Gear That Inspires Chris Burkard at Stocked 2019

Discover the Gear That Inspires Chris Burkard at Stocked 2019

We’re excited to announce that adventure photographer and documentarian Chris Burkard will be headlining day one of Gear Patrol’s upcoming event, Stocked.

Note: Purchasing products through our links may earn us a portion of the sale, which supports our editorial team’s mission. Learn more here.

Today’s Best Deals: Premium Accessories for Your Apple Devices, the Best Roomba You Can Buy & More

Welcome to Deals of Note, where Gear Patrol captures all the best deals of the day. You can also follow all our deal posts in the Deals section. Comments or concerns? We’d love to hear from you at deals@gearpatrol.com.

Woolnut makes some of the most stylish Apple accessories you can find. With premium iPad Leather Sleeves or the new iPhone 11 Leather Cases, there is no excuse for your Apple products not to look their best. The Woolnut MacBook Sleeves are all made with from German wool felt and vegetable tanned full-grain Scandinavian leather — available in black and a deep cognac. The sleeves are available for the entire MacBook series, so no matter which you have you can complement your device with minimalist and rustic cases. And to help you snap one up for yourself, Woolnut put together a code for 15% off all its products until the end of the month. All you have to do is use GEARPATROL19 at checkout.

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Roomba i7+ Robo-Vacuum
Save $100: When we reviewed iRobot’s i7+ robo-vacuum, we called it the best robo-vacuum you could buy. But we did so with one caveat: price. The full setup — which includes the vacuum and its charging and trash-dumping base — starts at $1,099. Today on Amazon, the cost is slightly more wallet-friendly.

Marked down $100, the i7+ is the first robo-vac to empty its dust contents for you. Once it senses its dustbin is full, it locks itself into its home base and deposits the trash inside (the base can hold around 30 Roombas worth of trash). It also retains “mission” data every time you send it out to clean, and it uses that data to more quickly clean your home on future missions. It’s all controlled through iRobot’s smartphone app. — Will Price

Outdoors and Fitness

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Nike Epic React Flyknit 2
Save $50: When Nike announced React foam in 2017, it promised the impossible: foam that’s lightweight, durable, and provides ample cushioning and bouncy energy return. Nike’s materials scientists tested more than 400 chemical combinations until they found the perfect mix, which the first delivered in basketball footwear. But React found its stride after Nike injected it into the Epic React Flyknit, a running shoe that gained a considerable following throughout 2018.

It wasn’t surprising that the Epic React Flyknit 2, released earlier this year, would also be a success. It features the foam that’s embedded in its name as well as Nike’s sock-like knitted upper, Flyknit. But for the follow-up, Nike tweaked that part of the shoe’s construction: the upper is stretchier, more supportive, and comfier with a lower heel cuff. Right now, the shoe is $50 off on Nike’s website. — Tanner Bowden

Style

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Cole Haan Suede Bomber Jacket
Save 50%: If you want to score a classic leather jacket for an incredible deal, head over to Nordstrom Rack today. Currently, you can save 50 percent on a few suede bomber jackets from Cole Haan. The zip-up style features two hand pockets, a cotton-linen lining and a ribbed collar and cuffs. Available in olive, navy and tan, this $500 jacket now costs just $250. — John Zientek
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Wolverine Boots
Save 25%: If you’ve been meaning to invest in a new pair of boots but haven’t found the right pair, Wolverine is currently making a compelling case for its hard-wearing styles. Now at Zappos, a bunch of boots from the Michigan-based brand are 25 percent off: choose from American-made lace-up styles including the iconic 1000 Mile boot and the go-anywhere Montague Boot boot. Many sizes are currently available, but with such a substantial discount, they won’t be for long. — John Zientek
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Gillette Fusion 5 Razor Blad Refills
Save 30%: Now at Amazon, you can save 30 percent on some annoyingly expensive Gillette Fusion5 razor blade refills. This is a great chance to stock up if you shave regularly with a Fusion5 ProGlide razor. Each cartridge features five of Gillette’s thinnest blades (for a more comfortable shave) and a precision trimmer to help groom hard-to-reach areas. Normally $48 for 12 cartridges, the package costs just $34 today. — John Zientek

Tech

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Apple Watch Series 4
Save up to $100: Apple officially announced the Apple Watch Series 5 last week and, in doing so, also stopped selling the Series 4, presumably because it’s slightly too similar to the new flagship offering, with the exceptions the Series 5 has an always-on display and a new sensor (a magnetometer) that allows it to work as a compass, showing you which way you’re facing while using Apple Maps. The Series 5 also comes in titanium models, although those are significantly more expensive. That said, it’s a great time to shop for the Apple Watch Series 4 because it’s on sal. It also has a bunch of the newer features that the Series 3 lacks, including fall detection, a built-in EKG and a variety of fitness features. If you shop on Amazon right now, you can buy a Series 4 with cellular for as little as $399, which is $100 off. If you don’t need built-in LTE, which I’d argue that most people don’t need (nor do they want to pay the extra $10 each month on their phone bill), you can get a pretty good deal on GPS-only models of the Series 4, too. — Tucker Bowe | grey_placeholder

G&L Limited Edition Tribute ASAT Classic Bluesboy Guitar
Save 33%:Today at Guitar Center, you can pick up a G&L Limited Edition Tribute ASAT Classic Bluesboy guitar for 33 percent off. This familiar guitar features the iconic body shape that put Fender on the map paired with a 22-fret maple neck. The bridge is unique and includes 6 individual brass saddles for accurate intonation and added sustain.

The Tribute ASAT Classic has a G&L humbucker in the neck position and a crisp G&L single-coil in the bridge position. This instrument features a limited-edition Mint Green finish and a 3-ply white pickguard.

Now at Guitar Center, this $450 guitar costs just $300. It’s practically a steal, so act fast — the deal will be gone before you know it. — John Zientek

Watches

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Seiko SRPC91 “Save the Ocean”
Save 27%: Released in 2018, the Seiko SRPC91 “Save the Ocean” is a Turtle-based special edition diver produced in partnership with Fabien Cousteau, Jaques Yves Cousteau’s grandson and and himself an ocean explorer and conservationist. It features a special blue gradient dial meant to recall the ocean housed in a 45mm stainless steel case, a Hardlex crystal, rubber dive strap and the Seiko automatic 4R36 movement with day-date indication. In partnership with Cousteau, Seiko will dedicate a portion of the proceeds from sales of the SRPC91 to Cousteau’s Ocean Learning Center, dedicated to promoting ocean health and conservation.
— Oren Hartov

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Note: Purchasing products through our links may earn us a portion of the sale, which supports our editorial team’s mission. Learn more here.

LARQ is the World’s First Self-Cleaning Water Bottle & Purifier

Using integrated UV-C LED lights, the LARQ bottle is the world’s first self-cleaning water bottle & purification system. It also won a coveted Red Dot Design Award. The light technology built into the bottle eliminates up to 99.9999% of bio-contaminants, providing fresh, clean drinking water in just 60 seconds. Every 2 hours, the LARQ turns on automatically to keep your water & the bottle fresh. Available in 17 & 25-ounce sizes.

The OCLU Action Camera Is Built for All Your Adventures

With action cameras, we thought we’d seen everything. Then came OCLU–the smarter, sleeker and easier to use solution for capturing all of your best moments. State of the art processors deliver UHD 4K video @…

A Bunch of Wolverine Boots Are Now on Sale

Substantial Savings

A Bunch of Wolverine Boots Are Now on Sale


If you’ve been meaning to invest in a new pair of boots but haven’t found the right pair, Wolverine is currently making a compelling case for its hard-wearing styles. Now at Zappos, a bunch of boots from the Michigan-based brand are 25 percent off: choose from American-made lace-up styles including the iconic 1000 Mile boot and the go-anywhere Montague Boot boot. Many sizes are currently available, but with such a substantial discount, they won’t be for long.

Evans Boot by Wolverine $400 $300

Addison Boot by Wolverine $400 $300

1000 Mile Boot by Wolverine $385 $289

1000 Mile Moc-Toe Boot by Wolverine $415 $311

Montague Chelsea Boot by Wolverine $295 $221
Note: Purchasing products through our links may earn us a portion of the sale, which supports our editorial team’s mission. Learn more here.