I’m writing this article while sitting in a hotel room in Seattle, eagerly anticipating the Seattle Interactive Conference and Gnomedex. It has occurred to me that there are a million top gadget lists out there, but very few focus on what a blogger or tech journalist would take with them while traveling. Since a great deal of our readers are bloggers and/or tech savvy, I thought I might share some of my favorite gadgets to take with me while traveling.
The Nikon D3000 isn’t the latest or greatest DSLR out there, but it is an excellent choice for bloggers on a budget. Yes, your smart phone may take amazing shots, but there are still a few tricks a DSLR can handle that smartphones haven’t quite caught up to yet.
The Nikon D3000 takes excellent and consistent shots, has a decent built-in flash, and a considerable battery life.
The MacBook Pro is great for blogging on the road. While the MacBook Air is lighter and easier to transport, the Pro allows you a bit more power when editing video from a hotel room or burning an optical disc to hand to an associate you met on the road. As far as portable computing, I’m still a sucker for a laptop that has a few extra ports where I need them.
Mophie Juice Pack Air
The Mophie Juice Pack Air is a great iPhone case for anyone that has a long day of smart phone usage ahead of them. Tweeting, taking photos, video, etc. all drain the battery of an iPhone very quickly. Having a capable backup battery on-hand is a good thing.
Clear Personal Hotspot
A lot of hotels out there have great Wi-Fi services, but overuse can lead to disconnection. When you’re facing a deadline, the last thing you want is your hotel cutting off your service. For $30/month I have unlimited broadband capabilities in most major cities. Granted, I wouldn’t recommend Clear as a primary service provider, but this little hotspot gives my laptop, phone, iPad, and any other Wi-Fi enabled device I have a direct line to the cloud.
Amazon Kindle 4
Having something to occupy your mind between posts and/or events is important. Hotel television is only so interesting, and you probably don’t want to surf the Web all day long. This little wonder has almost a month of battery life, making it the perfect companion while in flight, relaxing after a hard day, or simply taking a break from all the activity.
Canon HF R20 Camcorder
Just like the DSLR camera, I realize you can take video with a smart phone. Unfortunately, this video is rarely good enough to pass professional muster unless you’re going for a shaky video with lackluster audio. The iPhone 4S is a great choice, but its microphone can quickly be overwhelmed with the background noise of a conference or convention floor.
The HF R20 is a 1080p (true) camcorder with an external microphone option. This allows you to use a lavaliere, shotgun, or handheld mic to get a more direct sound from your subject. In addition, it’s incredibly light, which makes it easier to mount on thinner and lighter tripods made for point and shoot cameras.
The iPad is one of the best travel gadgets I know of. Not only is it incredibly portable, but it’s practically a full-blown production computer in itself. Install iMovie on it, grab the camera adapter kit, and edit videos from the show floor without having to head back to the hotel to crack open the laptop.
In addition, its remarkable battery life makes it a solid option for long flights. Couple it with in-flight Wi-Fi and you have an office at 35,000 feet.
Bose QuietComfort Acoustic Noise Cancelling Headphones
These headphones may not be cheap, but if you’re mastering audio on the road, you need the next best thing to studio monitors. These headphones are also great for taking with you on the plane, as planes tend to be incredibly noisy.
These are a few items I tend to take with me places, whether I’m staying two days or twelve. What gadgets do you take with you when you travel?