Obsessions

It's a Table With Stuff On It...

The Desks Of Gear Patrol

Some desks at Gear Patrol are dirty, some are disorganized and some are perfectly manicured. All of them showcase at least a small part of who we are and what we're passionate about.

Better your inner barista

Single Origin Beans vs Blends: A Primer

Let’s face it: the average North American spends less time contemplating the beans behind his morning motivator than it takes his barista to scowl disapprovingly. To open his eyes and shed a little light into those dark waters, the GP team delves into the differences between single origin and blended coffees. Our goal? To arm you with information on micro-lot farming, blend aging and why that cup tastes the way it does. It's all about being informed and maximizing enjoyment in your every-morning drink. So put on your scholar cap, pour yourself a cup and read on to explore the methods used to turn those remarkable beans into a masterpiece.

Digital Dynamo

Widealab Aurender S10 Music Server

Most people are perfectly content to store and experience their music collection on a computer (we do it everyday at the office). The convenience of accessing massive amounts of music and rich metadata on a whim with just a click or a search is simply unparalleled. For audiophiles, though, this ease of use comes at...

Classic Looks, Vespa Prices

Royal Enfield Bullet 500 B5

If you love motorcycling but happen to be on a budget and you also don’t plan on doing any “serious” riding, the Royal Enfield Bullet 500 B5 ($5,495) might be just the bike for you. A once popular UK bike manufacturer in the 1950s, the brand took a major hit due to the glut of...

Whole latte love

Rocket Espresso Giotto Evoluzione

Yes, it’s adorned with enough chromed steel to outshine a Kansas City bound Freightliner. Yes, it’s breathtakingly expensive. But for the truly dedicated, the Rocket Espresso Giotto Evoluzione ($2,100) is the closest thing to espresso nirvana we’ve ever had the chance to pull a shot from. Less white-gloved show pony and more workhorse, the Evoluzione...

Number Wonder

HP 12c 30th Anniversary Edition Scientific Calculator

One day, we may all look back at today’s digital gadgets with loving fondness. Call it a hunch, but we’re pretty certain a 3rd generation iPod Nano won’t quite conjure up quite the same nostalgia that vinyl does today. Digital treasures do exist though, and here in its latest guise, the quintessential HP 12c 30th...

Writing Off the Wall

Kaweco AC Sport Carbon Fiber Fountain Pen

Since 1883 Kaweco of Germany has been applying their company motto “small in the pocket, great in the hand” in their efforts to produce high end writing implements. Case in point: the AC Sport Carbon Fiber Fountain Pen ($112), which embodies the company motto right down the last dotted ‘I’ and crossed ‘T’. The pen is...

12 gifts for the booze lover

12 Guys of Christmas: The Mixologist

The Mixologist’s gotten you into plenty of blissful adventures, most of which ended without real long term damage to your record or your marriage. He’s a passionate guy, and he knows his craft: beer, that is. Malts, mash, wheat, barley, rye, and oh yes, sweet sweet delicious hops — he sucks them all down, grinning...

12 gifts for the handyman

12 Guys of Christmas: The Do-It-Yourselfer

You lean on him all year-round to assist, assemble and install everything from kitchen cabinetry to those amazing Patagonian rosewood floors you love so much. He tirelessly tackles the disparate demands of Honey-Do lists and familial fixes without so much as a peep. And yet, of all the men featured in our 12 Guys of...

Riding a (blast) wave

Defense Journal: The MRAP

Warfare is often a battle against change, and the U.S. military is always attempting to stay ahead of, or at least on top of, the curve. A fairly new yet significant player in this struggle is the MRAP, or Mine Resistant Ambush Protected vehicle. From seemingly nowhere, the ubiquitous “Humvee” (High-Mobility Multi-purpose Wheeled Vehicle, or...

12 gifts for the aesthete

12 Guys of Christmas: The Designer

They speak to Adobe software like a petulant brother, organize bookshelves by color for “fun” and fill photo albums with typefaces. They find calm through arranging objects in right angles (whether it’s their property or not) and take pleasure knowing that they’ll always notice the details we philistines ignore. “They” are designers of course, that...

Drink it all in

Design Spotlight: Soma Water Filtering Carafe

The plastic pitcher currently filtering water in your fridge is a far greener way to stay hydrated than pounding down bottles, but it stills leaves plenty to be desired — both in terms of form and function. Its tupperware aesthetic isn’t exactly ready for the bright lights of the dinner table, and if you fill...

Your new resource for all things Canon

Introducing the Canon Brand Guide

When you spend as much time as we do scouring the known universe in search of noteworthy products, one thing becomes abundantly clear: building a single great thing is a phenomenally difficult accomplishment, and repeating it is next to impossible. Every so often though, a company emerges that defies the odds and changes the world...

12 gifts for the traveler

12 Guys of Christmas: The Globetrotter

These guys seem to have racked up a bigger airline status than Clooney and more time on the road than Kerouac. They call ports of call home and know how to navigate the TSA, border checkpoints and a nasty comped bar hangover with ease. Whether a job takes them to exotic first-world destinations or their...

12 gifts for the lead foot

The 12 Guys of Christmas: The Driver

To find gifts for those men who consider driving simply a way to get from point A to point B, head to the nearest Brookstone. For those impassioned drivers you know — the ones who have 5W-30 running through their veins, love talking about tire aspect ratios and own some kind of driving/riding apparel (which...

The fastest sailboat in the world

Design Spotlight: The Sailrocket 2

One look at the Sailrocket 2 shows that your teacher wasn’t full of s**t when he said physics can be fun. This 600-pound carbon sailing vessel is truly a testament to the ingenuity and craftsmanship of its British sailing team (and the badass sailor that steers it). Reaching a certified speed of 54.08 knots (62.2...

12 gift ideas for the fitness obsessed

12 Guys of Christmas: The Athlete

The fitness fanatic is the man that puts in a quick 5K before the rest of us have even tossed the beans in the burr grinder. His body fat is measured in fractions, and biceps in feet. His dinner conversations involve things like basal metabolic rate; his pecs flex, noticeably, when he passes the pepper....

Hey There, Sport

Quick Spin: Range Rover Sport Supercharged

How do you really define overkill? Is 510 horsepower too much or just being prepared? If your $100K luxury SUV can climb a 45 degree muddy slope in a forest, but only goes on grocery runs, does it really make a sound? The 2013 Range Rover Sport Supercharged answers the question, “what if you wanted...

12 gift ideas for the active adventurer

12 Guys of Christmas: The Outdoorsman

The outdoorsman on your list is easily identifiable: he’s rarely home and smells faintly of man sweat and wood smoke when you do catch him between excursions. His particular passion falls within an extensive of range possible pursuits (noodling for catfish, anyone?), but one thing is for certain — he does them outside. His look...

12 Gift ideas for the sofa spud

12 Guys of Christmas: The Mediaphile

We’ve all got one. Maybe it’s you: The mediaphile in the family who’s impossible to shop for because he has it all and he’s seen it all — twice. His TV? Projected. His surround sound? 9.2. His wardrobe? Needs work. His love of movies and music has been fueled in the past by those enabling...

Happy Thanksgiving

There is one day that is ours. Thanksgiving Day is the one day that is purely American. – O. Henry From all of us here at Gear Patrol — above and afar — we hope your Thanksgiving is a great one. We’ll see you tomorrow.

425 lb-ft. Diesel. 'Nuf said.

Behind The Wheel: BMW X5 xDrive35d

The BMW X5 xDrive35d is a mouthful, an earful and a pocketful all at once. Its visually eclectic nomenclature is BMW speak for all-wheel drive and a diesel powertrain. Yes, we said diesel. Get used to it, because the clean-burning fuel is here to stay — providing both efficiency (relative, of course, for something this...

Time is the wisest counselor of all -- Pericles

Timekeeping: The 10,000 Year Clock

"Time and tide wait for no man", wrote Geoffrey Chaucer. We spend our days clamoring after bigger homes, nicer cars, the ultimate vacation spot -- and time keeps ticking, someday getting the better of us. Death and taxes, as they say. Every so often, in the stillness of the night, we think about the legacy we're leaving, about what will remain that has our name stamped on it long after we're food for worms. Discomfortingly, it seems little will. Even in the world of architecture, with varied and vast creations across the globe, it's a constant struggle to keep many historic buildings intact or to actually restore them to their original glory. Some survive, and many of those buildings aren't even a century old. Others fall, their legacy continued only in photographs or history books.

A sublime encounter with the bull

Steering by the Horns: Giro Lamborghini

In the world of exotic Italian automakers, the Lamborghini name needs no introduction — especially with the legacy of V12 superbeasts like the Miura and the Countach. Such icons adorned the walls of many a high school boy’s room just a few decades ago, and still ring true in our memories as a couple of...

It's not Jarvis...yet

Design Spotlight: Oakley Airwave Goggles

Oakley’s Airwave goggles are a new breed of advanced snow sport eyewear equipped with a heads up display that simulates viewing a 14-inch screen from five feet away when a user looks in the lower right corner of their peripheral vision. That description sounds confusing, but the important thing to remember is that the technology...

Second act of a different play

Quick Spin: 2013 Audi allroad

The original Audi allroad Quattro, sold between 2000 and 2006, was one righteous automobile. Built like a tank, powered by big horsepower numbers, designed for actual rough terrain, and with creature comforts and an actual height-adjustable suspension, the first allroad still garners respect from the automotive cognoscenti. Though a decent number were sold in both...

We interview the real fists in Bond's fights

Guts & Adrenaline: Backing Up Bond’s Bravado

21st century moviegoers think technology has taken the dirty work out of filmmaking, leaving the job of faking the “impossible” in the hands of the hardest working person in the Hollywood: CGI. But the best action directors still understand there’s no airbrushing when it comes to the strain of a man at his desperate limits....

Examining 007's inky origins

Reading Bond: Casino Royale

I’ve gaped at car chases, grinned from ear to ear over sly one-liners and left theaters flushed with the gory glory of Daniel Craig’s stone-faced massacres. No arguments here: theatrical James Bond is the perfect feel-good character for a whole sect of males. Cars, women, subterfuge and wit — that’s not a hard pill to...

Like a brick through a plate glass window

Defense Journal: Bond’s Gun, the Walther PPK

And so James Bond reluctantly retires his Beretta 418, in .25 ACP — and takes up the Walther Polizeipistole Kurz (police pistol, short) as his issued weapon, in both the original novel and the movie. Ian Fleming had Bond’s original Beretta catch in his holster in From Russia, With Love ; but in 1956 he...

Digging for gold

Hunting eBay: Cameras

For our last Hunting eBay post (for now), I’ve turned the focus to cameras. When it comes to photography gear, eBay is packed with listings — occasionally even leaving you wondering where to begin. But even if you’re the type who likes to dig around eBay for store-beating deals on DSLR kits and lenses (free...

We take over for Q

Bond Cars: What He Should Have Driven

What are as stunning as the women Bond has not-so-lasting relations with? His cars. Some — like the quintessential DB5 — we worship; others — the horrid AMC Hornet X Sedan, for example — are as tempting as having your privates divided by a laser beam. We decided to take a closer look at the...

Check out where 007 checked-in

Stay: The Hotels of James Bond

Every guy has dreamed of living the Bond life at some point in time. What man wouldn’t want to drive missile-equipped Aston Martins, blow through government slush funds on the tables of Monaco and spar with Grace Jones in bed woo every striking woman in a 200 mile radius while drinking the finest champagne? Practicing...

Five pillars of American beef

MoB | Dining at America’s Steakhouses

Every kind of meal has its own purpose, its particular ritual and significance. Burgers are meant for tailgating; road trips run on fast food; French restaurants seem fit for special occasions like anniversaries and third dates where you’re really trying to get some. Chief among dining rituals is the steakhouse dinner, when friends and colleagues...

Rolex? Omega.

Timekeeping: The Watches of James Bond

From the Archives: The history of James Bond and his timepiece choice can really be divided up into the “Rolex Era” and the “Omega Era”, despite the fact that the Bonds of Roger Moore and Timothy Dalton donned digital Seikos and a TAG Heuer in between. But Moore’s 007 had more to be ashamed of than what he wore on his wrist, and when was the last time you watched License to Kill? That’s what we thought. We celebrate 50 years of Bond and his wristwatches.

The Name's Week. Bond Week.

Welcome to Bond Week: 5 Days of All Things Bond

What’s more masculine than a month dedicated to beef? Easy: James Bond. Bond fights for the good guys, but to call him merely a hero would be an injustice. Beyond 007’s ability to deliver equal parts charisma and carousal, the man manages to do it all: defuse bombs, win showdowns (fisticuff, gun, or blade), evade...

A side of beef you've never seen

MoB | Beef, Yakiniku Style

There are sacred destinations for people of all faiths, religious and otherwise: Mecca, Islam’s holiest city; Paris or maybe Milan for the fashion set; Kona for triathletes. But what about those who follow the beef creed — at which temple do they gather and pray? We’ve been hot on the trail for a full month,...

Knockout On Wood

Design Spotlight: Allied Maker

Upstart Allied Maker is one of those stories we love exposing. All the elements are right. An individual pursuing a passion, an obsession with making things and a handsome product. Craftsmanship. The most overused word in recent history, but we’re saying it anyway. The young man behind Allied Maker is self-taught woodworker Ryden Rizzo. But...

Biscotti, Pavarotti, Maserati

Quick Spin: Maserati GranTurismo Sport

Maserati’s singular focus on high-end beautiful Italian machinery has made them masters. The GranTurismo, GranTurismo Convertible and the Quattroporte are all essentially a variant on one auto. They’re vehicles with gorgeous lines and roaring V8s; each is designed to be (Maserati vernacular) “a good host” (however, as Olivia Munn and Mario Lopez demonstrate, good hosts...

Sideways

MoB | Ultimate Steak Side Dishes

Next to a steak, anything is a side dish. Serve a beautifully roasted capon on the same table as a steak and you’ve got a side of capon. Traditional accompaniments for steak like garlic mashed potatoes, creamed spinach and sauteed mushrooms are altogether nothing to scoff at. But this being the Month of Beef, and...

Ménage à beef

MoB | Rib-eye Three Ways

There’s more than one way to skin a cat, the saying goes. The same is true for cooking a steak. Most of the time the way we cook at home is dictated by circumstance: grill when the weather permits; pan fry if it doesn’t (or if we live in an apartment); broil, uh, when the...

Beyond the Survival Kit

Roundup: Hurricane Gear

As Hurricane Sandy furiously barrels on like a scorned woman — and the East Coast grinds to a halt — we thought we’d leave you with a parting post today recapping some of our recent survival and outdoor gear. Keep in mind: this doesn’t include a basic survival kit, which we assume you already keep...

Good breeding is everything

MoB | Beef Cattle Breeds

We’ve given you a beef baptism in buying beef online, the rules of store-bought beef, beef’s lesser-known cuts and even beef you can drink. Kicking things up a notch (BAM!), let’s explore the breeds of cattle that end up on your plate — putting a face on things, so to speak. Get your breed on...

A shock to the system

Behind the Wheel: 2013 Toyota RAV4 EV

Any forward thinker interested in buying an electric vehicle today is normally faced with two choices: Pick a generic people carrier with the driving excitement of a Radio Flyer from one of a handful of major manufacturers; or dredge the slush fund and hop on a waiting list for a conscience-clearing geek rocket from boutique...

One family's patty-filled chapter in the book of American Dreams

MoB | The History of In-N-Out Burger

In-N-Out Burger is something of a cult to those living outside of the chain’s west-coast bubble, proselytized by endless waves of sunkissed acolytes devoted to spreading the good burger word. Their brief testaments, filled with whispers of “animal fries”, “secret menus” and multiplied stacks of beef and cheese, speak of a fast-food paradise whose divine...