Archive for the ‘Tech’ Category

Protect Your Vehicle From the Elements

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EmpireCovers makes protective covers for just about vehicle you’d want to shield from the elements: cars, trucks. SUVs , boats and motorcycles are all featured on their website. All of the covers they sell are fitted to a specific make and model. That gives them a superior fit but that level of specialization also makes them pricier than the discount covers you might find down at the discount store. Are they worth the extra cost?

I tested out an American Armor model cover for a Mazda Miata. That’s the top end of the Empire line and they seem to be available for around $300 for most cars once you apply the available discounts.  +Continue Reading

Review: Kinivo Bluetooth Speakers


Kinivo aims to make reasonably-priced alternatives to more expensive wireless audio products. The pocket-sized Kinivo BTX270 Wireless Speaker and the Kinivo BTX450 desktop speaker continue their string of well-reviewed audio devices:  their bluetooth headphones are a steal at $25 and these two offer their own solid level of value. +Continue Reading

Review: OGIO Throttle Backpack

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The Ogio Throttle Pack ($79.99) is a more economical alternative to their $125 All Elements backpack that we reviewed a few months back. If you aren’t using a backpack in the most extreme conditions, I actually found the Throttle to be more useful.

The padded computer sleeve is located in panel behind the straps. That makes for easy access to a few essential work items. While the main compartment does have a zip-up pocket near the top and a couple of mesh pockets just below, it’s mostly just a big space where you can cram your clothes or supplies. Maximum storage and minimal fuss. There’s a front access compartment and two side compartments that can handle a water bottle or keys and glasses. And there’s a fleece-lined compartment on the top for phones and other electronics, at least ones that you’ve got in a protective case. +Continue Reading

Remotely Control Your Dook Lock With Okidokeys

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Whole-house, Internet-connected smart homes are coming at some point relatively soon. Unfortunately, “relatively soon” is hard to pinpoint: the killer system could come online next summer or we could be ten years away from something that works well. In the meantime, there’s the Okidokeys remote lock system, a device that aims to do one thing really well: replace your deadbolt with a remote control system that can both make your doors easier to lock and unlock, with the bonus that you can also remotely grant access to friends or service people via the Internet. +Continue Reading

Review: verykool RX 2 Rock Phone

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The verykool RX2 Rock is an Android smartphone designed to stand up to a lot of abuse and delivers on that front. It’s got an IP68 rating and a tempered glass screen and claims that it can be submerged in up to 5 meters of water for an hour. It feels great in your hand and it’s survived a lot of (mostly unintentional) abuse as I’ve used it over the last month.

It’s a great choice for some people. Pros and cons are listed below. +Continue Reading

Small Gadgets For Your Computer & iPhone

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Sometimes it’s the smaller tech accessories that make the biggest difference. Going through the pile on the office desk turned up something interesting options from NewerTech, Felix, Screensters, Juno Power and BodyGuardz. +Continue Reading

Navy Vet Tom Anstead Launches Oceanis Dive Watch


Navy veteran Tom Anstead is the bravest kind of entrepreneur: he launched a new watch company in a manufacturing field where many of the established players are hundreds of years old and some of the most beloved brands inspire intense loyalty in their customers. Anstead wanted to build a high quality dive watch and deliver it at a reasonable price. The second iteration of his Anstead Oceanis dive watch is now available for $499 for a limited time via Tom’s website.

The Oceanis is made from 316L stainless steel and comes with a Miyota 9015 movement. Anstead advertises water-resistance to 300 meters and 40 hours of power reserve, so you don’t have to wear the watch every day to keep it wound.  The hands and dial use a Super LumiNova coating for easy visibility and the 120-click unidirectional bezel offers more precise marker settings. +Continue Reading

Modernize a Vintage Hi-Fi With the Mass Fidelity Relay

  • October 29, 2014
  • Tech
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The Mass Fidelity Relay Hi-Fi Bluetooth DAC is a fantastic solution for anyone who’d like to stream music from a computer, tablet or smartphone but doesn’t want to replace their current audio system with a Sonos or other wireless speaker or even “upgrade” their vintage receiver or preamp to a new one with AirPlay or Bluetooth built in.

The Relay promises a one-minute setup and it delivers: you take it out of the box, screw the antenna into the back, plug in the power cord and plug the RCA jacks into an open slot on your receiver or preamp. Hit the power button, pair with your device and you’re playing music. It’s a $249 addition to your system, but look at it this way: that’s a lot less expensive than a top-end wireless speaker and definitely cheaper than a new receiver that you might not want anyway. +Continue Reading

Review: Cambridge Audio Go Wireless Speaker

  • October 27, 2014
  • Tech
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The Cambridge Audio Go is an all-around improvement to the Cambridge Audio Minx Go portable Bluetooth speaker. You can start with the name: someone realized (or “realised,” since they’re British) that “minx” has some less-than-flattering slang connotations for women.

The Go retails for $179 and a fantastic-sounding speaker for the price. If you search for “Cambridge Audio Go” online, you’ll get a lot of links to buy the still-available Minx version. You want the new one. Click here to order the right version from Amazon via the Cambridge Audio website. +Continue Reading

Review: A-Audio Legacy Headphones

  • October 22, 2014
  • Tech
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The A-Audio Legacy headphones cost $299 direct and feature Active Noise Cancellation and a bass boost mode. There’s a lot of padding and a faux-skin carrying case. They’re blingy and they’ve received some rapturous reviews elsewhere online. +Continue Reading