We launched the first Trayvax wallet in 2014 thanks to the support of our Kickstarter donors. Since then, our catalog has expanded considerably. This provides more options to suit your specific needs. It also makes choosing the right wallet a little trickier. We design every product to be of the highest possible quality, but different models excel in different areas. We love them all, and everyone has their favorite, but if you’re looking at minimalist wallets for the first time, the number of choices can be overwhelming. That’s why we’ve decided to bring our wallets together for some friendly competition. We’ve created rankings in five categories: card capacity, cash capacity, RFID protection, materials, and extras.
Round 1: Card Capacity
In the first round, the Original 2.0 comes out on top. Its simple design allows you to adjust the paracord to fit a whole lot of cards. When customized with a longer paracord, there is almost no limit to the number of cards you can fit in the 2.0, although it might be pretty hard to fit in your pocket if you go over 15. If card capacity is your top priority, you can’t go wrong with the 2.0. The Axis Wallet comes in a close second. If you’re looking for a leather wallet, the Contour is your best bet for card capacity in third place.
Round 2: Cash Capacity (Bills)
Until crypto currency takes over the world, you never know when you might need some cold hard cash, even if it’s just because “the machine isn’t working.” Fortunately, that doesn’t mean you need to stuff your wallet like some 90s sit-com goofball. In fact, the slim and refined Contour is the clear winner here, proving you don’t have to sacrifice form for function. If you like to keep bills on hand, this is the top choice. The Axis is the runner up once again, while all the other wallets in the catalog have equal capacity.
Round 3: RFID Blocking
RFID is a technology that is built into payment cards, ID cards, access cards, and other important cards that might be in your wallet. There’s no sure fire way to prevent such items from being scanned without your knowledge, but the metal frames on our wallets prevent the internal antenna from being powered up, thereby protecting your information. Since the antenna runs along the perimeter of the card, only that area needs to be placed next to metal, allowing our wallets to remain minimal and light while still providing protection. The Armored Summit jumps up the ranks to take the top spot this time (RFID blocking test results vary, but we have calculated the Armored Summit’s blocking as high as 99%). Once again, the Axis earns an honorable mention in second place.
* The Summit was tested with the armored plate. Without this plate, it still offers some protection, but results will vary.
** The Original was tested with the standard aluminum front plate. With the optional G10 front plate RFID blocking will be slightly diminished in exchange for improved durability and grip. Speaking of which...
Round 4: Materials
This one is a lot more subjective than the other categories. It will really come down to personal preference for each customer. With that in mind, we have ranked the wallets based on the number of material options available. Check marks indicate standard materials, and asterisks (stars) indicate additional options. In terms of material options, the Contour comes out on top again with the Original 2.0 close behind. If you like leather, the Element and the Ascent offer old-school style with modern design features. This graph really doesn’t do the Axis justice (poor little guy). While all Axis wallets are made from steel and nylon, we offer both melonite and cerakote finishes as options for their stainless steel plates.
* Many stainless steel frames are available with a melonite finish, see product pages for details.
Round 5: Extras
Here’s another one that comes down to personal preference. In terms of the number of standard extras, the Original 2.0 comes out on top. But there are some extra features that are only available on other wallets. Only the Axis has a coin/key pocket, and only the Ascent has a pull tab for your cards.
* The Summit deserves special recognition for the number of accessories available for purchase including the Summit Notebook Bundle and the Summit Cellphone Grip. The bottle opener is on the removable Armor Plate as part of the Armored Summit package or as an add-on.
** The Explorer Passport Wallet is almost in a different category here as it is designed around holding a passport. No other wallet on the list can do that.
Conclusion? You decide!
While some of our wallets excel in key areas, these rankings also show just how evenly matched our wallets are overall. After second or third on the list, it typically ends up being mostly even. The Element and the Ascent may not have taken the top spot in any one category, but they are still great wallets, especially if you want that traditional leather look. As for the Explorer, it’s in a category all its own. If you’re looking for a passport sleeve that also functions as a wallet, the Explorer is the perfect choice. If you don’t like leather, that narrows down your choices as well. Your budget also makes a difference. On that note, here is a handy price guide for the Trayvax wallets featured in this showdown. These are the base prices and they may increase with additional options.
Please let us know which wallet is your favorite and why you chose it in the comments. As always, thank you for your continued support as we explore new products and designs.