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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Tricks & Effects » » Review: Nexus Wallet by Javier Fuenmayor (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

EndersGame
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Nexus Wallet by Javier Fuenmayor

An all-in-one minimalist wallet for the mentalist and magician

OVERVIEW

I'm more of a card magic guy, so I don't have much experience with wallets and mentalism. But the complete package promised by the Nexus Wallet was hard to resist. Created in-house by Murphy's Magic team member Javier Fuenmayor, and accompanied with a 4 hour video tutorial, this slimline wallet offers four key things: a peek, a card-to-wallet feature (into a zippered compartment), an out-to-lunch clip, and an ID transpo effect. I was sold, and ready to give it a try.

By his own admission, Javier Fuenmayor is a big fan of wallets, and knows how useful they can be as a utility device for mentalists. Many wallets on the market offer a good peek, while others offer a good card-to-wallet feature. He wanted to come up with something that provided both of these, while also remaining a very practical and slim wallet that you can actually use as a wallet on an everyday basis.

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WHAT YOU GET

The Nexus Wallet is attractively packaged inside a box, and the main thing you get is of course the wallet itself. But there are a few extras: an out-to-lunch clip attached to the wallet, and a special attachment that will be used in combination with some elastic (also provided) for the ID transpo effect.

In addition there's a link with a password for the online tutorial, which can be viewed with streaming video or downloaded. It runs for over 4 hours, and is a file that is more than 2GB in size if you download it - a ton of content!

See a video trailer for the wallet here:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6W_Mj2VNmP4

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THE ROUTINES

As part of the instructional video you are taught multiple routines, including:

Basic peek routine: This is very basic routine where your spectator writes a name, number, or object on a card, that you then reveal.

Drawing duplication: This is a slightly more advanced routine using the peek, where you duplicate a spectator's drawing.

Ring to envelope: Your spectator's ring (or any other small object) vanishes, and appears in a sealed envelope found inside the zippered compartment of the wallet.

Signed card to envelope: This time a card trick culminates with the spectator's signed selection ending up in the sealed envelope inside the wallet.

Lucky: This is similar to the previous effect, but is a more advanced routine involving a second card, and where the signed card appears inside a bill in the wallet.

Out to lunch: Using the clip and the out-to-lunch principle, a picture on a signed blank card transforms into a different picture.

ID transpo: While a spectator holds their own ID card (or drivers license), your own ID card visually and instantly transforms into their ID card inside the wallet, while the card in their hand magically becomes yours.

While these are the routines taught in detail, they are by no means the only tricks you learn on the tutorial video. For each of the mechanisms on the wallet, there are several tricks and applications that are covered and taught, as described below.

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THE WALLET

The features: The wallet is black and leather-like, with a window on one size for photo ID, three pockets on that side for your credit cards or similar, and two pockets on the other side for more cards. There's also an additional zippered compartment, and the ID side of the wallet also has a larger pocket you can use for paper money. Besides that there's some extras, such as a detachable out-to-lunch clip, and some components you'll need for the ID transpo effect.

The quality: When this wallet first came out, it generated a lot of hype, buzz, and also some controversy. One of the biggest complaints had to do with the fact that it's made of artificial leather rather than genuine leather. As a result, you can't expect it to be as durable as a genuine leather wallet. Given that it comes with a fairly high price tag, this left a lot of people dissatisfied. For example, some buyers reported issues with the stitching coming lose. It's certainly something to consider before deciding whether or not to buy one for yourself. I'll comment more on this later in connection with the specific features, because it's a problem that is mostly linked to the use of the out-to-lunch clip, which you can remove.

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The practicality: The features are fantastic in every respect. First of all, I really like the fact that I can use this as an everyday wallet . It's not just a tool for mentalists and magicians, but has been created with the goal of being practical and usable. Ever since I picked this up, I've ditched my old black leather wallet, and have been using this instead (minus the out-to-lunch clip). And it does the job just fine of carrying my ID, my credit cards, and my money, with ample pockets to use for my cards and my cash. The wallet does get a little tight when filled with all my cards, but is still very usable.

The price: We might as well get this out of the way up front. This wallet doesn't come cheap. It currently retails for around $100. Obviously when a product is at that price point, expectations are going to be high.

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THE FEATURES

The real highlight comes with the secrets built inside of this wallet, starting with the peek, but as well as several other main features.

1. PEEK

The obvious application of the peek feature is for mentalist routines, and in the video it is used for the basic peek routine and the drawing duplication routine. You'll be having your spectator writing something on a card, which slips into the ID section of the wallet, behind clear plastic. You can then reveal this however you prefer.

The secret includes a smooth-working and clever mechanism that involves magnets, and Javier does a great job of showing how to do the peek in a very natural and well-disguised way. In fact, in the tutorial he covers over half a dozen different ways you can accomplish the peek, including when you take out a business card, put the wallet into your pocket, or onto the spectator's hand. Javier emphasizes how to ensure it is well-motivated. The angles are also very good, so the risk of getting caught is very low, and yet you do genuinely get a 100% peek of the entire card.

Several other tricks are taught using the wallet's peek mechanism, including a nice idea for a coin through ID window effect, where a signed coin (or key) is tossed, and then impossibly appears inside the ID window. The "T flip" move enables you to instantly switch one card for another - this offers similar possibilities as the Himber Wallet, including torn-and-restored effects, or a bill switch. The peek mechanism can also be used to easily steal a card from the wallet.

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2. CARD-TO-WALLET

The wallet has a zippered compartment that is used for the card-to-wallet feature that will be of interest to a lot of magicians. This is used for the "Ring to envelope" and "Signed card to envelope" routines, as well as the "Lucky" routine, all of which have something appear inside the zippered compartment.

The load is easy if you use a credit card as a slider as taught on the video. You can use this to move small objects into the zippered compartment, or items up to the size of a poker sized playing card. A PDF is provided with a printable template for a custom envelope, and the tutorial covers detailed instructions for how to make an object or signed card vanish, and appear inside the wallet in a completely sealed envelope. This is really clever and has great potential to amaze.

Some other good ideas for utilizing this part of the wallet are taught as well, such as the "Sharpie from wallet" visual gag, where an impossibly large object like a Sharpie appears from inside the zippered compartment. I also liked the "Vanishing ring from wallet" idea, where a small object like a ring borrowed from a spectator is placed inside the zippered compartment and easily made to vanish.

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3. OUT-TO-LUNCH CLIP

The main thing this clip is used for is a classic out-to-lunch routine, but it also has practical uses like enabling additional storage for cards and money. Javier also suggests you can use this clip on your belt to store the wallet, or as a hold-out (e.g. to hide a four of a kind or royal flush).

The out-to-lunch clip is something you have to be very careful with, especially in taking the clip in and out. I suggest expanding the clip slightly, otherwise it might rip the material, as many users have reported happening. To avoid this damage, I've just removed the clip, and plan to use it separately, since you can use the clip independently of the wallet to do the out-to-lunch routine.

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4. ID TRANSPO

This is a brand new effect completely unique to this wallet. It requires making a gimmick using some of the extra items that are provided along with the wallet (e.g. a flapper device, and some elastic thread). The reason you'll have to do some arts and crafts here is because you'll have to customize it to your own ID.

Besides the more advanced routine where you switch your ID card with your spectator's ID card, this mechanism can also be used to make your ID card visually disappear into your pocket, or to make an ID card instantly appear.

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THE VIDEO

One of the best things about this product is the tutorial video that you get. It's well produced, with clear sound, and multiple camera angles. And: 4 hours. Wow! It's very obvious that Javier Fuenmayor believes in his product, and he's put a lot of thought into creating it, and using this wallet, and he wants people to get the maximum benefit out of it. Along with the video you do get a document containing a full table of contents with time stamps, so that you can navigate easily to whichever part of the video you want.

Javier also does a fantastic job in teaching you everything about the wallet, starting with extensive coverage of every single compartment, and how to get the most of it as an everyday wallet. Then he covers all its special features, and provides multiple routines that use each of these. The video tutorial is very detailed, and the routines and content are at least as good as what you might receive if you purchased a DVD or downloadable video from a top performer. If you're new to effects like using a peek for mentalism or card-to-wallet, the teaching is especially fantastic.

For the most part an intermediate knowledge of card magic is assumed, and there are times where Javier makes use of techniques like the palm, the cop, and the mercury fold, although in each case he does teach these quickly as well. But especially for tricks like the card to wallet, it's assumed that you already know basic card controls, and can do a routine such as Ambitious Card and use the card to wallet to close out the effect.

Javier really understands the psychology and theory of magic, and in the course of watching the video you'll also learn a lot besides just the technical handling of the wallet. The video really is fantastic, an absolute joy to watch, and I can't say enough good things about it.

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OTHER IMPRESSIONS

The Nexus Wallet isn't perfect, and probably the biggest downside are potential issues with quality and durability, especially in light of the price point. But if you remove the out-to-lunch clip, you'll avoid many of the concerns about this.

I especially liked the fact that I can use the Nexus Wallet as an everyday wallet. And along with the potential to create some surprising magic, it's very good.

In terms of what it achieves, the Nexus Wallet is very solid. Particularly the peek feature, and the card-to-wallet feature are both very good. I can't compare these with other wallets, but I do love how both of these features work. Other reviews I've seen on these two points have been very positive.

As for the other features, having an out-to-lunch clip included is a nice extra, although this isn't something you should be taking on and off the wallet often if you want the wallet to last. And while it won't be for everyone, the visual ID change is something unique that isn't offered by other products.

You get all the tools you need, because the video tutorial is especially outstanding. Javier is passionate, covers so much material, and his instructional video makes up a big part of the value that is part of this package.

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RECOMMENDATION

Whether the Nexus Wallet is worth the fairly steep price given some lingering question marks about durability will be a personal decision. But regardless of how long the wallet lasts, I know that what I've learned from the video alone has been very valuable.

If you want a full package that gives you everything you need, including some very versatile features combined with great teaching content, this is it. The Nexus Wallet is a great utility device that you can use in all kinds of ways, especially for mentalism. And it does provide you with a large number of initial routines as a good starting point for your own performances, and to get your own creative juices flowing.

Where to get it? You can get the Nexus Wallet from your favourite Murphy's Magic retailer.

Want to learn more? [i]See the following video resources on the Nexus Wallet:
Official Video Trailer (Murphy's Magic)
Review Show Special (Craig Petty)
Round Table Discussion (Javier Fuenmayor with Titanas, Lloyd Barnes, and Luke Dancy)

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