In the lifestyle blogosphere, it's pretty popular for bloggers to write posts explaining all of the tech and tools that they use. I always find them interesting because everyone has different preferences and workflows. I figured it was about time that I do a tea blogging version of this. I do get questions about what gear I use from time to time so it will also help to have a blog post that I can refer people to. Particularly for new bloggers, it is easy to believe that you need the top of the line of everything in order to succeed. Nothing could be farther than the truth and I think you'll find this list to be proof positive of that.
Laptop - HP Pavillion G7
My laptop, a thoughtful gift from my soon-to-be-husband, is several years old at this point but it is pretty much the command center for the blog. I use it for everything from writing blog posts to filming YouTube videos. It isn't the fastest or most advanced computer out there but I've been very happy with it. The only issue I've experienced is that it does run a bit hot but that is easily solved with a USB cooling pad.
Chromebook- HP Chromebook 11
Life gets pretty busy these days so I needed something that would allow me to keep the blog updated while on the go. I had a Chromebook years ago but somehow managed to leave it on a bus. Jason once again saved the day by buying me a replacement last Christmas. I love that it is lightweight but still has a full keyboard. There isn't much internal memory but Google Drive pretty much takes care of that issue. I often bring it to work, especially if I wasn't able to finish the Friday Roundup on time. Amazon makes a nifty carrying case for these that is very inexpensive.
External Hard Drive - Western Digital 1TB Elements
An external hard drive is absolutely essential for backing up all of my photos, videos, and other important files for the blog. I've been using this one since 2011 so there are definitely even cheaper models available with more storage space nowadays. It has served me well, especially for keeping a catalog of stock photos at the ready whenever they are needed for a blog post or project. It is just now beginning to fill up so I may need to upgrade soon.
Phone - Samsung J7
I'm an Android girl through and through. In recent years I've stuck mostly with the Samsung Galaxy family of phones. When I recently made the change to T-Mobile from Verizon, I received a J7 as the basic smartphone option. I pleasantly surprised to find that this it offered everything I liked about the other Galaxy phones for a MUCH lower price tag. I have a real knack for utterly destroying every phone I've ever had (Verizon's phone insurance broke up with me!) but my J7 is still in one piece after almost a year. That might be a new record.
Camera - Canon Power Shot ELPH 100 HS
Nearly every image on the blog and on my social media is taken with either my phone or a Canon point and shoot camera. I purchased it from a random stranger in a local swap/sell Facebook group. It went down a bit like a very PG drug deal but I got a decent camera (along with several batteries) for $20. My old camera had stopped functioning completely so it was a lifesaver at the time. I would eventually like to upgrade to an entry level DSLR but that is an expense that will have to wait until after my wedding.
Lighting - Folding Light Tent and Selfie Ring Light
When I was living with my parents I was spoiled by having large windows that received a ton of natural light. My current basement apartment...not so much. There was a major adjustment period but finding an inexpensive folding light tent has made a world of difference. It is small in size and has a built-in LED light strip, perfect for getting close-ups of leaves for blog posts. When I need to take pictures outside of the light tent, I use a Kardashian style selfie ring light. Just turn it around to your forward facing camera and it is a perfect way to illuminate objects.
Heating - Breville One-Touch Tea Maker and Zojirushi CD-WCC40
My early tea reviews used an old-fashioned stovetop kettle or a Zarafina Tea Maker. I won my Breville One-Touch at a Steepster meetup years ago and we have been inseparable ever since. I primarily use it to heat water rather than for brewing, The pitcher is a bit hefty but this unit has been a real workhorse. I love that it lets me select a water temperature anywhere from 160 to 212 degrees Fahrenheit so I am prepared for everything from matcha to shou puerh.
Water - Brita Metro Filter Pitcher
Tap water quality can vary widely across the U.S. but I'm pretty lucky in that respect. My municipal water is dependable, clean, and fairly odorless. Just to be on the safe side, I usually filter my water for tea with a Brita pitcher. It's a small step but I feel like it does make a significant difference in the taste of my tea.
Is there something I missed that you'd like to know about? Let me know and I'll be sure to add it to this post. To my fellow tea bloggers (you know who you are!): I'd love to hear about your setup. Tell me all about yours in the comments or better yet, share a post like this one on your own blog!
Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links, which means I may receive a commission if you click a link and purchase something. Clicking these links won't cost you anything extra but they will help me to keep this site up and running. Thank you for your support!