Anyone who has spent even a scant amount of time researching and searching for the perfect camera bag will quickly become familiar with two things:
- That there is no such thing as the perfect camera bag.
- The pervasiveness of the Think Tank brand.
Think Tank Photo doesn’t deal exclusively in camera bags, however; they also sport a substantial line of laptop and tablet bags, which makes sense considering the widespread overlap between photographers and laptop users. While not every laptop owner is a photographer, I’ve yet to meet a photographer who doesn’t own a computer or tablet of some sort. So no matter how you look at it, pretty much everyone needs a great laptop bag. If you’ve grown weary from your exhaustive search, you just might find relief in Think Tank Photo’s My 2nd Brain “mobile office.”
The My 2nd Brain bag (the 15-inch version in this case) makes a good first impression. Its rugged good looks and minimalistic design are immediately appealing. The bag not only looks sturdy, it is sturdy. Top notch stitching all around, a comfortable should strap, built-to-last zippers, and nickel-plated metal hardware round out lightweight, water-resistant material. The exact exterior dimensions of the bag are 10.2” W x 14.8” H x 2.6” D (26 x 37.5 x 6.5cm). Don’t be fooled by the pithy measurements, however. You can shovel a whole lot of stuff into this bag.
Pockets and Storage Areas
The external pockets are plentiful and useful. There’s a soft-lined phone pocket and a large zippered pocket with storage areas for pens, business cards, and other similar items. The front of the bag also features a soft-lined pocket designed to hold a tablet device.
The Laptop Pocket
I found the internal laptop pocket to be well padded and snug — surprisingly snug. My 15-inch MacBook Pro doesn’t easily slip into place, there’s just enough room for it. This isn’t really a complaint, however, because I was happy that my laptop wasn’t in there sliding around like it did with the previous two bags I used. Even if I were to unzip this bag and hold it upside down, I’m pretty confident that my laptop would stay in place (I didn’t actually test this hypothesis). There are numerous other solidly constructed pockets of varying sizes, ready to hold a power supply, memory cards, batteries, cables, ear buds, pens, notepads, or small portable hard drives. As with the laptop pocket, you can rest assured that whatever gear you store isn’t going to fall out, doubly protected by the design of the pockets and the gusseted sides that prevent the bag from opening more than approximately 6 inches.
While the marketing for the M2B line is flatly aimed at Apple devices and the bag does indeed work perfectly well with Apple branded products, there is no reason to think that devices with similar dimensions from other manufactures wouldn’t find an equally comfortable home in this bag.
Are there any glaring omissions as far as features? Any major design flaws? In my opinion, no. If I were to make any changes, the phone pocket would be a mesh pocket located on the outside of the bag as opposed to the padded internal pocket, where it’s difficult — if not impossible — to hear the phone ring or feel it vibrate. But that’s hardly a deal breaker.
The M2B15 is par for the course for Think Tank Photo; it’s an extremely functional, thoughtfully designed, high quality bag that will help you stay organized and keep your laptop secure while you’re on the go. If you need a compact, easy to handle laptop bag, you will be hard pressed to find a more suitable solution than My 2nd Brain.