I’ve seen various gadgets, including phone backup batteries, used as keychain fobs, but this is the first Bluetooth speaker key fob I’ve seen. The BluGo Bluetooth speaker from Triple C is only 2.25″ in diameter and 1″ thick. It comes with a ball chain to clip onto your keyring or bag strap. It has a rechargeable battery (2 hours to a full charge) that gives you 3 hours of playback. The BluGo is available in a variety of designs, from the colorful Dali seen here to animal prints, floral, and even camouflage designs. The BluGo Bluetooth Speaker is $39.99 at Triple C.
Last week, we told you about the Pearl: Compact Mirror & USB Rechargeable Battery that was seeking funding on Kickstarter. Soon after our post went live, Kickstarter suspended the project because of a DMCA copyright infringement claim. Daniel Chin of HYPER by Sanho Corporation, says: “It was a ridiculous, unfounded and fraudulent claim which Kickstarter did not bother to verify with us. To make matters worse, Kickstarter stuck a big notice in place of our project page with a link to the false claims that allege that ‘we agree that we bought a stolen design’. Doesn’t matter to Kickstarter if the very public notice and DMCA claim accuses us of wrongdoing and that we have no way to publicly address to all those lies.”
The Pearl project has moved to Indiegogo. Check the project page for a link to read HYPER by Sanho Corporation’s story of what happened with the Kickstarter project. If you want to back the project, now’s your chance. You can still make an early-bird pledge of $25 for your choice of a red, silver, or gold Pearl, to be delivered on or before December 24. Other pledges will be delivered in January 2015. Funding for the Pearl: Compact Mirror & USB Rechargeable Battery ends on November 24, 2014 at 11:59pm PT.
If you are a geek, you most likely already know what steampunk is, but if not, it’s a sub-genre of science fiction that features steam-powered machinery and gadgets that have been inspired by the works of H. G. Wells and Jules Verne. The folks at Steamy Tech have created a wide variety of kits and finished pieces that are based on the pseudo-Victorian mechanical “steampunk” style. Hand made from laser-cut wood pieces, the finished products feature moving gears, flashing LEDs and more. You can choose from pendants, pens, wallets, coasters, desk toys and more. The kits are available on the Steamy Tech webshop on Etsy with prices that range from $10 all the way up to $300.
I will admit that I have a rather large collection of watches. While most don’t get worn on a regular basis, I do have a couple that I would consider my every day users. While these are not necessarily the most expensive or elaborate watches, they are reliable/durable and I am always looking for ways to make them a little more personal or unique. One way to do this is by changing out the watch band. Watch bands come in many styles and materials, but to me nothing beats a great leather band for style and durability. With that in mind I have come across the Worn & Wound NYC NATO Horween watch bands. While the NATO style watch band is not unusual, having it in leather is a little rarer. The NYC NATO Horween watch band is a “Snuff Suede” leather made from Horween leather. The NYC NATO Horween comes in two lug widths 20 and 22 mm, two hardware choices matte steel or black PVD hardware and in five colors which are olive, graphite, russet, black and limited edition coal. At a price of $59 from the Worn & Wound website, they may be a little pricey, but American made quality is always worth it.
We have an Apple TV, and we love watching programming with it. In keeping with the Apple design ethic, the device and its remote are both sleek and minimal. Despite only having two buttons and a 5-way navigation control, the remote works well for selecting and controlling programming – until you need to enter text. Entering a search string or a password for the Apple TV means using the 5-way navigation control to scroll around a matrix of numbers and letters to first move to a letter than select it. It would work much better if you had a keyboard for text entry, which is where the iPazzPort Air Mouse Bluetooth Mini Wireless Keyboard for Apple TV with Gyroscopic Mouse and Built In Sleeve for Apple TV Remote Control (KP-810-16BAR) comes in. You can pair the iPazzPort mouse with the Apple TV and use it for data entry. You can also use it as a mouse and keyboard with a computer. Let’s see how it works. [click to continue…]
Adding more file storage to a MacBook Pro or MacBook Air usually means hanging an external hard drive off a USB port, plugging in a USB flash drive or inserting an SD card. All these ways will work just fine, but they aren’t the most elegant solutions. Dangling an external drive from your laptop when you’re mobile can be a hassle and USB flash drives and SD cards stick out from the ports just begging to get snagged on something. The MacBook Pro/Air Micro SD(HC) Card Adapter is from Brando is a small adapter that supports a micro SD / SD(HC) / SD(XC) card up to 64GB. The adapter turns the micro SD(HC) card into an SD card, allowing it to fit in the SD card slot on the MBP or MBA. The advantage to using the adapter is that it doesn’t stick out of the SD card slot like a normal SD card will. There’s just a small sliver of plastic that sticks out so that it can be removed easily and the color of the adapter matches the laptop, allowing it to blend in and look seamless. The MacBook Pro/Air Micro SD(HC) Card Adapter is available from Brando for $10.
Epson’s Home Cinema 3500 2D/3D Full HD 1080p 3LCD Projector uses 3LCD 3-chip technology to provide a bright, immersive experience on a big-screen of up to 300 inches. Epson says it provides up to 3X brighter colors than competitive models; it provides 2500 lumens of color brightness and 2500 lumens of white brightness and up to 70,000:1 contrast ratio. It projects full 1080p HD video in either 2D or 3D. Positioning is easy with wide vertical and horizontal lens shift and the 1.6x zoom lens. The Home Cinema 3500 includes two built-in 10W speakers. The Home Cinema 3500 2D/3D Full HD 1080p 3LCD Projector is $1599.99 at Epson.
2 years ago, I reviewed Atomic Floyd’s SuperDarts hybrid in-ear headphones. I liked them then and I like them now. I often still use them despite how many earphones I’ve reviewed or have yet to review. I like the sound signature and I really like the hybrid speaker design—an armature and a dynamic speaker working together. Atomic Floyd managed to exploit the strengths of each speaker design while minimizing their weaknesses. However, one major issue I had—and still have—with the SuperDarts is weight. They are HEAVY.
Atomic Floyd has now put the SuperDarts on a diet with the new SuperDarts Titanium. Titanium is lighter and stronger than the original SuperDart’s steel construction. The lighter weight should allow the SuperDarts to be worn while the user is active. Plus, The speakers have been re-tuned to take advantage of the newer metal. The SuperDarts Titaniums lose the hot-red accent color, but are still attractive in their all-black and pewter-colored clothing.
The SuperDarts Titanium in-ear headphones sell for $399-$480 from Amazon and are available now.
Here’s a low tech alternative to the expensive hi-tech problem of viewing movies on your smartphone. Instead of crowding around your phone’s screen, project the image on a wall using the Smartphone Projector. This DIY kit is made of sturdy cardboard and a comes with a glass lens that will magnify the image on the screen and project it on a blank wall. Just follow the directions to fold the box, insert your smartphone with the brightness turned to the max in the specially designed tray in the back of the box, turn off the lights and you’re all set to watch movies and videos without feeling cramped. Most smartphones will work with this projector as long as they are no larger than 3 x 6 inches. There is room to connect a power cord to your phone and even speakers. When you place the projector approximately 6 feet from the wall it will project a 30-32inch image. You can find this smartphone projector at Uncommon Goods for $27. Don’t forget the popcorn.
Getting power from point A to point B when there’s no electrical outlet on one end usually means that you have to employ the aid of an extension cord. I’m sure you probably have at least one orange extension cord in your garage or home. Long extension cords are obviously handy, but uncoiling and coiling them back up once you’re done using them can be a chore that involves tangles and knots. I’ve been testing the RoboReel Power Cord System, which is a fantastic solution to this first world problem as long as the price doesn’t scare you away. But before we get to the price, let me show you how it works.
The Hobbit Limited Edition Clothbound Notebook from Moleskine is the perfect gift for any Middle Earth aficionado. This is a large-sized Moleskine, measuring 5″ X 8.25″. It’s covered in a nutmeg fabric, and the front is decorated with a graphic that looks like a page from Bilbo’s own diary. Inside are 336 ruled pages, seven reproductions of Tolkien’s original illustrations from the first edition, and quotes from the novel. There’s also a Thror’s Map insert; hold it up to the light to see the Moon Runes. The Hobbit Limited Edition Clothbound Notebook is $34.95 from Moleskine. They have other limited-edition Hobbit notebooks available, starting at $16.95.
We like to make sure you are always up to date with what we’re writing about, so here is a full list of all the news, reviews and articles that we posted this week on The Gadgeteer.
Now that you have an iPhone 6 Plus, how are you going to protect it from everyday wear and tear? Are you using a rubber bumper case? Boring… Maybe you have a snap-on plastic shell on the back. Even more boring… If you want an iPhone 6 Plus case that looks fantastic while also doubling as a minimalist wallet, check out the new 80° leather wallet from Mujjo. Available in tan or black vegetable tanned leather with a suede-lined case interior, this wallet features a wrap around design that protects the back and sides of your phone while also providing a card pocket on the back that is placed at an 80° angle. This gives the case some style while also keeping the cards tightly secure and in place. This case is priced at $51.37 for the iPhone 6 Plus and $46.23 for the iPhone 6 version. For more info visit Mujjo.
We cut cable a long time ago and opted for over-the-air (OTA) channels using antennas. Back in the day, we also bought DVD recorders to record our favorite shows but had problems with ALL of them, and never got around to replacing them. Most of the time I’m at home when my shows are on, but I sure have noticed the lack of a DVR when I’m not. Recently, Simple.TV became available for review here at the Gadgeteer. It is an OTA and unencrypted digital cable “whole planet DVR” (meaning you can record to your Simple.TV device from anywhere and watch from anywhere). Would it work for us and fill the hole in our entertainment AV arsenal? Oh, how I hope so.
Flying these days can be a big hassle, long lines, short tempers and that’s just at the security checks. But there was a time when flying and being on an airplane was a more civilized venture, with hand mixed cocktails and plenty of elbow room. You can’t do anything about the elbow room, but you can now get a civilized cocktail (or at least an Old Fashioned) by bringing a Carry On Cocktail Kit. The Carry On Cocktail Kit is the brain child of two companies, W&P Design and Punch, both based out of Brooklyn New York. The kits consist of the following:
- Carry on tin
- Recipe card
- Aromatic Bitters
- Cane sugar
- Linen coaster
The Carry On Cocktail Kit contains enough mix to create two Old Fashioned cocktails, all you will need to do is order the mini bottle of Bourbon, mix up the ingredients, then sit back and remember the more civilized days of flying. The Carry On Cocktail Kit will cost you $24 from the Carry On Cocktail Kit web page and the sellers of the product say it will make it through security just fine.
You’ll make short work of dinner preparations when you use the set of knives in the Star Wars X-Wing Knife Block. The block is made of of silver plastic and has individual knife sheaths built in. It’s weighted to prevent tipping. The set includes five, one-piece knives with high-quality blades. You’ll receive a chef’s, bread, carving, paring, and utility knife. The officially-licensed Star Wars X-Wing Knife Block is $99.99 from ThinkGeek. It’s the perfect gift for any padawan or chef!
Celebrate with the Force this Christmas by decorating with these Kurt S. Adler Star Wars lawn ornaments. Each 36 inch character (which includes Darth Vader, R2D2, a Storm Trooper, and Yoda) contains 50 lights and is decked out in Christmas apparel to join you in celebrating the holidays. When decorating this Christmas, “Do, or do not. There is no try.” They can be used indoors or outdoors and are available through Home Depot (online only) for $69.98 each.
Here’s a little something for our gadget loving fisherman readers. It’s the Hook-Eze and it claims to help you quickly and safely tie a fishing hook to your line without drawing any blood. It’s a simple gadget invented by Ross Bain of Australia, that is basically a holder that snaps over the hook’s barb so it doesn’t end up in your hand when you’re trying to tie the fishing line to it. It’s also great for covering the hook when you’re not fishing. The Hook-Eze is available in different sized packs, starting at $12 for a pack of two. Visit the Hook-Eze site for more info or Jerry’s Fishing Ideas for US orders.
Home internet, wired or wireless? That’s a big question now days with more folks working from home. With a lot of newer homes being built today having the house pre wired for Ethernet connections is a common practice. In older homes wireless seems to be the way to go, especially with faster speed wireless routers. But, what happens when you live in an older home and your wireless signal wont reach all of your desired computing locations? TP-Link has a solution, the AV600 Gigabyte Powerline Adapter starter kit.
With the PetziConnect, you can see, talk to, and dispense treats to your cat or dog while you’re out of the house. Install the PetziConnect, connect it to your WiFi connection, install the free, secure app to your smart phone, and you and your fur babies will be in contact any time you like. The HD camera lets you see your pet in 720p resolution, and you can snap pictures or record video at 30fps; you can even capture low-light video. The PetziConnect has clear audio so you can speak to your pets. When they hear your voice, they’ll come running to listen to you and get a little treat. The treat doesn’t just drop; one to three pieces will be tossed out so the pet will have to chase down the treats to add some fun and play to your little visit. You can share the videos and photos you capture through the app, and the app will notify you when it’s time to reload the treats. You should give yourself the gift of seeing and interacting with your fur babies when you can’t be there with them. The PetziConnect is available now for pre-order for $169.99 from Petzila, with shipping in time for the holidays. Watch the video to see the PetziConnect in action. After you see it, you’ll want a PetziConnect and a couple of adorable little chihuahua friends!