YouTube is a strange and frightening place.
You have YouTubers I will never understand in a million years like Logan Paul and PewDiePie and then there are endlessly entertaining channels like CinemaSins and Bad Lip Reading. Alongside videos of makeup tutorials you have hypnotic 10-hour videos of the iconic “dental plan Lisa needs braces” gag from the Simpsons (I admit I watched two and a half hours of that video).
But for all the bizarrities and nonsense plaguing YouTube, there is a lively segment of gear reviews and channels devoted to knives and tangential topics.
So I did the unenviable task of choosing some of the best knife YouTubers every knife enthusiast should subscribe to.
The faceless wonder, the man with the voice of an angel, the Z-Hunter fanboy (which may or may not be ironic anymore). It’s Nick Shabazz.
Nick Shabazz is one of my favorite knife YouTubers. His main focus is gear reviews — specifically knives but he’s branched out into other EDC items — but he also does immensely helpful disassembly videos and occasional live unboxings of awful knives. He looks at the good, the bad, and the ugly of all the items he gets for an unbiased view. On top of his fair take on the knives, he’s the master of puns.
For evidence, check out his review of the CRKT Wrinkle:
While this post mostly features underdog and hidden talents, there are some people you just can’t ignore. One of those is cutleylover. Jeff has been on YouTube since 2008 and has amassed quite a following in the ensuing years. He has nearly 500,000 subscribers and more than 200 million views. Chances are you’ve seen one of his videos.
For a while he went away from knife content but has reshifted his focus to knives the past few months. He has a lot of other content as well these days, including storytime videos, discussions about his life, and the usual great knife video. To be honest, I don’t find all his videos must watch like I do with Nick Shabazz and some of the others but his best videos remain among the best out there.
Cedric & Ada Gear and Outdoors
If you’re reading this in August 2018, don’t go watch Cedric & Ada’s most recent videos. These videos are artistic explorations into the mind of a madman who’s obsessed with knives. They look like something straight out of Tim and Eric’s playbook. Instead of artsy shorts videos, Cedric & Ada Gear and Outdoors is best known for the steel testing videos and reviews.
Pete, who runs the channel, is respected by others in the YouTube community. He conducts admittedly unscientific but pretty revealing tests on different steels. He also does tests to figure out whether mirror polished finishes hold edges better or the optimal angles for edges.
Pete has a great sense of humor that perfectly aligns with mine (The Simpsons generation perhaps?). Here’s a good video demonstrating the types of things Pete does in the videos:
Birdshot IV is a channel from the team of Frankie and Bird. The husband and wife duo take a casual approach to looking at knives, but you can tell that they absolutely love knives. They collect knives of all types and have recorded quite a number of videos.
The production quality of the videos aren’t as great as other channels, but you watch for the takes and the personalities. Here is a sample video that’s a representation of the channel:
OK, so this one doesn’t really belong here in that it’s unlike any of the others on this list. However, if you’re a reader of this blog, you’ve undoubtedly see me link to kiwami japan videos.
Essentially, what this Japanese YouTuber does is create knives from a variety of unconventional materials. For example, he has made knives using gelatin, underwear, chocolate, cardboard, potatoes, and various other nonmetallic substances. Believe it or not, the knives are functional and extremely sharp (though I can’t imagine they hold up to repeated use).
If he just made the knives, the videos would be entertaining and worth a watch but he injects a little bit of his personality in each video, creating small stories within the video sometimes. He has more than a million subscribers so you can tell his videos transcend knife lovers as well.
Here is an ice knife:
EpicSnuggleBunny is more in the vein of Nick Shabazz, doing tabletop reviews. However, Auston (the man behind the channel) focuses more on higher-end knives, so you won’t find many videos on the CRKT or Cold Steel. This is both a positive and a negative.
People often claim that he’s not critical enough of the knives, but Auston mostly just picks stuff he’s interested in and doesn’t spend much time on bad knives (something a reviewer like Shabazz seems to revel in at time). You can tell he spends a lot of time getting into the background and specs of the knife he reviews.
Here’s a review of the Bestech Starfighter from EpicSnuggleBunny (if you want to find out the background of the name, check out his interview on the KnifeNuts podcast):
Advanced Knife Bro
Advanced Knife Bro has quickly risen in ranks as one of my favorite knife YouTubers. You can see by just watching his videos that he puts hours and hours into shooting, editing, and scripting each video. On top of the time and effort he puts into his videos, they’re just so darn funny and entertaining. He comes off as a jaded knife reviewer who no longer gives a crap — although you can tell he does… maybe.
If you want to get to know him a little better, I highly recommend listening to the Knife Nuts podcast interview in a recent episode. Here’s a typical review (well, except for the lack of batoning).
Kevin Cleary has made a name for himself in the knife community as a good guy who posts good knife content. He typically does the old tabletop review and will sometimes explore other topics, including knife laws in Canada. He is a preacher, a knife nut, and a family guy. His posting is consistent and he focuses almost exclusively on knives, which I find a plus.
Unfortunately, he hasn’t found a huge audience and has currently fewer than 8,000 subscribers. However, he’s had a lot of reviews since first joining in 2011 and continues to grind away a few times every week. You can tell he does it for the fun of it.
I’ve undoubtedly left a few obvious ones off the list, but I plan on adding more in the future. Let me know what other channels I should subscribe to.