Archive for the ‘Tech’ Category

Get a Great Deal on a Kodiak Waterproof Backup Battery


Outdoor Tech have launched an Indiegogo campaign for an expansion of their Kodiak Waterproof portable battery line. I’ve been using the currently available Kodiak 6000mAh model and it’s working fine, even after I threw it in the pond out back and left it there for a half hour.

+Continue Reading

Pocket Kick: A Quality Speaker that Really Does Fit in Your Pocket


Soundfreaq makes a lot of well-designed wireless speakers that sell at a reasonable price and the Pocket Kick fits right into that tradition. It’s really small (6″ x 2.5″ x 1.25″ and weighs 9.3 oz.), retails for $99 and comes in black, gray and gold. +Continue Reading

Underwater Photography With the iPhone PhotoProX


If you want to use your iPhone camera underwater, the Optrix PhotoProX case and lenses for the iPhone 5/5s are going to get the job done and protect your phone. The set sells for $149.95 direct with free shipping.

Testing waterproof products is always a leap of faith. There’s a lot that can go wrong and there’s not really a “testing-related phone accident” clause in my employment agreement. Optrix advertises “Military-grade” protection and IPX8 water immersion protection. Once I made the commitment, the case was 100% effective through my testing. +Continue Reading

Fix Your iMac With a NewerTech Keypad


The NewerTech Wireless Aluminum Keypad corrects a major Apple error: the elimination of the numeric keypad from its wireless keyboard a few years back.  They still sell as wired keyboard with a keypad, but that severely limits where you can position yourself at your computer. The NewerTech retails for $54.95, matches the Apple wireless keyboard and does a great job. +Continue Reading

Lose the Land Line With Ooma


The Ooma Telo uses your Internet connection to provide telephone services. You can buy the device once for $129.99 and use it forever. This sounds a lot like the Vonage pitch from a few years back, but with a crucial difference. The Ooma sounds great, way better than the other VOIP (voice over Internet Protocol) services on the market. If you’re tired of paying your local phone company for a land line, this is a great solution if you know exactly what you’re getting into.

Anyone under the age of 30 whose first phone was a cell phone may not really see the need for a home phone number, but people alive back in the ancient times of the ‘70s and ‘80s often feel like a shared family phone is a necessary part of a civilized lifestyle. Ooma wants to talk to you people.

+Continue Reading

Review: Monster Superstar Speaker & Powercard Battery


I had a chance to meet with Noel Lee, the founder and head engineer at Monster Audio for a preview of some upcoming projects that I’m not supposed to talk about yet. Noel built a massive business from scratch, starting with the idea that a good audio setup requires higher quality cables. He later gave Dr. Dre his start in the audio business as the original manufacturer of Beats by Dre headphones.

Since Beats left Monster, it seems like Lee’s been on a mission to compete on both fronts. Monster makes several lines of lifestyle headphones that out-bling almost anything on the market, but they’ve also put out the DNA line that can compete with any headphones at their price point and the excellent iSport workout earbuds. Let’s just say that some of the new products sound even better.

I’ll be reviewing the new products once they’re released, but, in the meantime, I’ve spent some time with the Monster Superstar portable wireless speaker and the Monster Powercard portable backup battery. +Continue Reading

ECOROX & ECOSTONE: Truly Waterproof Wireless Speakers


I took the ECOROX and ECOSTONE wireless speakers to the beach and threw them in the ocean and threw them in the pool. Repeatedly. They held up with no issues and floated effortless to the surface every time. If you’re looking for wireless tunes to use at the lake or the beach or even around the pool at home, these speakers are going to handle whatever intentional or accidental water-related abuse you might hurl at them. +Continue Reading

Wharfedale Diamond 10.2 Speakers: HiFi at a MidFi Price

Diamond 10.2

No waffling: I really love the Wharfedale Diamond 10.2 bookshelf speakers. They’re not cheap ($449/pair) but they both look and sound like speakers costing more than twice the price.

These are interesting times in the home audio world. There are a lot of good or very good options for $500 or less, options that are of far better quality than we could buy for those prices in the ‘90s or early 2000s. Still, very few of those improved options really approach the advantages of true audiophile gear. These Wharfedales may not quite match the quality of $2500 pairs, but they manage to suggest that experience for a fraction of the price.

+Continue Reading

Military Tested: Panasonic ToughPad FZ-M1


Some days it feels like every publicist in America has a case or device that’s tested to “military standards.” A lot of those products are great, offering levels of protection that are far more than adequate for most anyone who’s taking a device on a hunting or camping trip.

Devices that can actually stand up to legit military field specifications are a much rarer breed. The Panasonic Toughpad FZ-M1  7″ tablet is the real deal, currently in actual field use by every branch of the U.S. Military.

Panasonic sent one over for us to play with and also let us talk with James Poole, Panasonic’s Director of DOD and Intelligence sales about how the device is getting used in the real world. +Continue Reading

Cambridge Audio: Bluetone vs. Minx Speakers

Bluetone-100-_0004_Layer 4

Cambridge Audio has just relaunched its wireless speaker line with the Bluetone 100, a 100 Watt Bluetooth stereo speaker that aims to be the primary listening device for anyone looking for a high quality sound from a device with a small footprint. Priced at $299, the Bluetone is an update and simplification of the Minx 100, which is still on the market at $399. +Continue Reading