Matt Philie, also known as Swashin, has been on YouTube since he was 12, but in 2013 he found his true calling (and audience) doing reviews of people’s desk setups. “I loved the idea of doing something that had never been done before, which motivated me to get to where I’m at now,” he says. “Of course now there are tons of rip-offs of my show but it’s flattering and confirms it was in fact a good idea!” Also a good idea was Philie’s joining Kit, where he shares his own studio and bedroom setups and has inspired others to do the same.
We just had to find out what’s up with the fascination with setups, whose give him setup envy, and what’s beyond the setup — aka what’s in his, gasp, pockets.
1) Why setups? How much can they really vary?
Much like our fingerprints and snowflakes, every setup is unique. Sure you could buy all the same equipment and furniture as someone else but the way you use it and the things you do with it will vary. It’s exciting to have an area that enables you to be creative doing what you love, whether it’s video editing, graphic design, music producing, writing, etc. The best part of a setup is that it’s never finished. I’m constantly improving my setup to work better for me.
2) Whose desk setup has given you serious envy?
Currently, I’m really digging a ton of setups from my Facebook group, Setup Addicts, like Jason’s! (see below)
3) What are the characteristics of a top setup?
I have five categories on my show, Pimp My Setup, that I use to grade each submission. These include wire management, out of sight out of mind, usability, accessories, and theme. You can spend $20,000 on insane equipment but if your wires are a complete mess, your desk is cluttered, and it’s an uncomfortable place to work then it’s not anything special to me. Use the five categories I mentioned as a checklist for your own setup to ensure it’s the best it can be.
4) What kinds of things have you learned from your viewers?
My viewers definitely have strong opinions and it’s been great to read their feedback on every video because it reminds me that everyone has different interests. Just because I love a setup doesn’t mean everyone else will. It also doesn’t mean I’m wrong or the other person is wrong! We all like different things and that’s just the way it is. It’s great advice for setups and life in general.
5) Looks like you just got your Silver Play Button plaque from YouTube — how’d you celebrate?
I was so excited when I received my button that I decided to take it out to dinner. Let me tell you, what a cheap date! Seriously though, I just stared at it for a good 15 minutes thinking about how much it means to me. Instead of celebrating, I got inspired and decided to get back to creating more content!
6) What gadget can’t you live without?
I know it’s a boring answer but my iPhone 6S Plus is MY LIFE! I am constantly checking it, scrolling through Twitter, answering emails and what not.
7) We know what your various desk setups look like. But when you’re on the go what’s in your pockets, aka what’s your everyday carry?
Personally, I don’t leave the house all that often because…well, I have no friends BUT the few times a year when I do leave I always have my car keys, phone and wallet at least. I use to bring a battery pack of sorts but I actually got my hands on the NOMAD Wallet that has one built-in…Yeah, it’s pretty awesome.
8) If you could see anyone make a Kit who would it be, and what kind of Kit?
This is a great question. Hmmmmmmm… I’d love Chris Pratt to make a Kit featuring the essential products to be a badass like him. That dude is awesome.
9) Show us your emojis!