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All posts tagged "accessories"

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Let The Satechi R1 Hold Your Tablet

Posted by Jeff Campbell in "Apple iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad" @ 05:00 AM

"Tablets and larger mobile devices have changed our lives since the debut of the iPad, and we love holding those devices in our hands. We touch, create, and consume all while we have the device on our laps or hands."

But sometimes it is helpful to have a handy stand available, just like this one. At $49.95 USD it isn't too cheap, but it appears to be pretty functional, and it works for any number of devices that have a 7" to 10" screen, such as Galaxy Tabs, Kindle Fires, Asus Eee Pad and the Blackberry Playbook. You can find out more about this device at the Satechi site.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

RCA's USB Wall Charger, Just Plug It In!

Posted by Jeff Campbell in "Apple iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad" @ 05:00 AM

"Most modern smartphones, tablets, MP3 players, and other gadgets rely on USB-based chargers. Some of these come with their own AC wall adapters, while others include nothing more than a USB cable-meaning you have to plug them into your computer to get them charged."

The nice thing about this thing is that you just plug it into the existing outlet, so it's basically a cover. No need to replace the current outlet so you don't have to worry about shocking yourself silly. And it goes for the small sum of $15.00 USD at Lowes (currently out of stock in my area), or you can get it at for $12.47 USD (currently in stock with both white and almond colored versions).

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Jot Touch Stylus From Adonit, Too Much?

Posted by Jeff Campbell in "Apple iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad" @ 03:00 AM

"The folks at Adonit have been working hard on their new product, the Jot Touch, a pressure sensitive stylus with a built-in antenna and a free SDK kit for drawing app developers."

Too much as in it seems pretty complicated to me, but then again i'm used to just a regular old stylus or the tip of my finger. I suppose being able to have tight control over the end of the stylus would be useful for those doing intricate work on their iPad or tablet, but for the regular user like me, I don't see the value. What are your thoughts?

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Flygrip Will Ease Your One Handed Fears

Posted by Jeff Campbell in "Apple iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad" @ 03:00 AM

"So you're walking with your iPhone in one hand, and a Starbucks latte in the other, and granted it is possible to use the iPhone in one hand, it could prove to be "fatal" since one hand tends to offer less support compared to two, and we all know that heart wrenching feeling when your brand new gadget slips out of your hand and onto the hard pavement."

Basically very simple, as all this does is attach to the iPhone case or the iPhone itself and you slide your fingers in and can start using your iPhone one handed without fear of dropping it. I can also be attached to the back of your iPad, or any other tablet for that matter. As you can see from the photos, it doesn't have to be an Apple product to work. Three sizes (small, medium and large) depending on the finger size and you can get them for $29.95 USD each from the Flygrip store located here. That seems a bit spendy to me, and I think I would rather just spend that on a better case. What are your thoughts?

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Manfrotto Unica VII Messenger Bag ~ Near Perfect Camera Bag

Posted by Stacie Huckeba in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 04:17 PM

Product Category: Camera Bag
Manufacturer: Manfrotto
Where to Buy: Best Buy, Amazon
Price: $50 - $99 USD
Holds: DSLR with lens attached as well as 1 to 2 other lenses, 17" Macbook (15.4" laptop) and personal effects.
Specifications: Product Height 12.2", Product Width 7.5", Product Depth18.9",Product Weight 2.2 lbs.


  • Lightweight;
  • Cost Effective;
  • Lots of Storage Space.


  • Shoulder Pad is not Comfortable;
  • No Regular Tripod Attachment;
  • No Easy Access Side Pockets.

Summary: The Manfrotto Unica VII Messenger Bag is a great camera bag for photographers on the go or who travel frequently. It is stylish and has an easy access top zipper that lets you get to all your gear in a hurry. That same zipper makes it easy to grab your laptop out for airport security checkpoints and, yes, the whole bag is carry-on friendly for both domestic and international flights.

The ability to carry a pro body with a battery pack attached and a 17 inch laptop along with other lenses and equipment without weighing a ton or requiring you to stop and find a place to sit your bag down in order to access your equipment is a lifesaver. The messenger bag style makes it easy to carry around all day and doesn't scream "I have an expensive camera in here!". The price point on this can't be beat - at $50 - $100, it easily compares to bags twice the price. Read more...

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Reminder: Audioengine A5+ Speaker Contest Closes on Friday

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Events" @ 03:00 PM

Just a quick reminder that our giveaway contest to win a set of Audioengine A5+ speakers (valued at $399) wraps up on Friday at noon, so enter now!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Cost / Performance Shootout at the SSD Corral

Posted by Michael Knutson in "Laptop Thoughts Talk" @ 09:00 AM

"It’s no secret that replacing your notebook’s hard drive with a solid state disk can dramatically transform your computing experience. With even last year’s SSDs, tasks such as opening large files or starting bulky applications take mere moments to complete. And if you own a notebook powered by one of Intel’s 2nd Generation Core Series CPUs, you’re in for a whole new world of fast, courtesy of SATA III, a high-speed interface Intel included in its new chipsets starting in 2011."

One of the secrets of enhancing computer performance is to remove bottlenecks, and a few years ago the biggest (and cheapest) way to gain added performance was to add memory. Today, memory seems to be no longer an issue, so we've moved on to the venerable hard drive as the point where data flow slows down. As SSD prices drop, expect to see the hard drive start to go the way of other past drives, and be replaced all or in part by solid state drives. We already are starting to see hybrid (multi-drive) systems, where the boot (OS and programs) drive is an SSD, and day-to-day data is still stored on a spinning drive.

This review tests SATA III SSDs from Samsung, Intel, OCZ and Patriot, and they also do an interesting comparison on cost per gigabyte, ranging from $1.53 (OCZ 240GB) to $2.31 (Intel 120GB). Retail prices are expected to be lower. Their comparison hard drive was a 500GB 7,200rpm model, but at a significantly lower cost per GB. The tests are interesting, and the SSDs perform as expected, with Samsung's 830 winning the shootout (cost today $229 for 128GB and $429 for 256GB).

Please note that these performance tests were done on laptops with Intel's current chipsets (supporting SATA III). Older systems will not see this performance.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Audioengine Introduces A5+ Premium Powered Speaker System

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 01:31 PM

"The Audioengine 5+ (A5+) active speakers deliver audiophile-quality sound and features at a price that continues to set the standard for affordable high-quality audio. Connect your iDevice, computer, TV, or any other audio component for great stereo sound. The goal of Audioengine is to give our customers a high-end listening experience at affordable prices with easy to use, high-quality products. The Audioengine 5 powered speaker system was Audioengine's flagship model and has become a best seller, winning numerous awards along the way. The new A5+ incorporates the same award-winning design as the original A5 but includes customer-requested upgrades and features."

Bar none, Audioengine makes the best speakers I've heard at any similar price point. They simply sound incredible - I reviewed the original A5's back in 2007, and they still sound as good today as they did back then (actually, even better since I bought an Audioengine S8 subwoofer and added it to the mix). With the built-in 3.5mm input jack, they make a great accessory for smartphones, MP3 players, laptops, tablets, etc. I love the sound of AudioEngine speakers so much I have three pairs of their smaller A2 units in my home office. You get the point. :-) AudioEngine's release of the new A5+ speakers brings with it a $50 price increase, making them a pricey accessory at $399, but a set of speakers like this will last for years, through multiple computer upgrades.

What's new about the A5+ over the previous A5's? To quote Audioengine, "advance tuned cabinet with rear-ported waveguide, improved thermal management, upgraded speaker connector binding posts,remote control, variable preamp line out, RCA and mini-jack inputs, and new stand-mount 1/4" threaded inserts". I don't see anything in that list that would make me want to replace my A5's, but if I buy another set of speakers, I'll take a serious look at the A5+ speakers.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

V-MODA Vibrato Headphones Reviewed: They're Worth It

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 07:30 AM

If you've ever shopped for headphones, you've likely come across V-MODA. They make a variety of headphones in different price segments, but I've never reviewed any of them until now. I was offered the chance to review the V-MODA Vibrato headphones ($129.99 USD from Amazon), and since I'd heard good things about V-MODA headphones, I said yes. I'm glad I did, though that conclusion took some time to get to. Confused? Keep reading. Read more...

Monday, August 1, 2011

iTwin: Your Missing Link Has Been Found

Posted by Chris Sacksteder in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 08:00 AM

iTwin first picture

Product Category: File Sharing Utility
Manufacturer: iTwin, Inc.
Where to Buy: Amazon [Affiliate]
Price: $99.99 USD
System Requirements: Windows 7, XP or Vista (32-bit or 64-bit)
Specifications: Size: 90mm x 21mm x 8mm; 50g. Symmetrical USB (2.0) connectors, LED activity lights.


  • Easy to use.
  • Can connect two computers to copy files when other means don't work.
  • Easier than connecting to a remote file share.


  • May not be as good as connecting to a file share.
  • Needs access to company's server to operate.
  • No local help or trouble-shooting options.

Summary: This is a unique little device that enables secure file sharing between two (and only two) computers, and may be just the thing you need when other methods are blocked by company firewalls or home routers, or are simply too difficult to set up by a novice user. The company's slick marketing-oriented web site may over state its features, but it works well. Read more...

Thursday, June 23, 2011

XO Skins for iPad 2 Released, And You Can Win One!

Posted by Jeff Campbell in "Apple iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad" @ 02:05 PM

I think we all like some kind of protection on our devices, be it an iPhone or an iPad or even one of those "other" phones. Over the years, XO Skins has provided extremely good scratch protection for a number of devices, not just Apple products, and they really cover the gamut from laptops to iPads to Blackberrys to iPods and pretty much anything in between. I've used their product on my stuff since the iPhone came out, and have always found their product to be top notch. Now they have released protective skins for the iPad 2, so read on to see how you can win a screen protector for your iPad 2.


Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Exomount, The Only Mount You Will Need

Posted by Jeff Campbell in "Apple iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad" @ 01:00 AM

"A simple car mount that won't fall mid-drive is all anyone really needs. Still, there's something to be said for one that can stick firmly to almost any surface."

ExoGear sells the mount for $29.95 USD, and it is pretty versatile as you can see from the photo above. Granted, all the photos show an iPhone 4 but if you visit their site you will see that it will work with any device up to a 5-inch screen (thinking tablet here). They even have it adapted to use as an iPad holder or stand by flipping the suction cup around. A one size fits all mount if you will and the price certainly is affordable.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

WaterField Designs MacBook Air Wallet Holds Everything You Need

Posted by Jeff Campbell in "Apple Laptops" @ 08:31 PM

WaterField Designs is a company that makes an assortment of cases and bags, for a variety of products. Not only do they base their company out of San Francisco, it's also where they manufacture their products. They are known for high quality craftsmanship, as well as their customer service, and their latest case is no exception.

According to the Waterfield Designs website, the MacBook Air Wallet is "your compact MacBook Air travel case for the 11" & 13" MacBook Air and accessories." As you can see from the above image, they show how much stuff you can get inside one of these padded protective covers, and from my time using the Air Wallet, I have to agree with them. In fact, it holds a little more, as I was able to even fit my iPad (original version) in the Air Wallet, along with my 11 inch MacBook Air. They have two versions, one for the 11-inch MacBook Air for $89.00 USD, and another version for the 13-inch MacBook Air for $99.00 USD.


Thursday, May 26, 2011

Vogel's RingO: A Universal Tablet Mounting System

Posted by Eric Juillerat in "Apple iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad" @ 10:00 AM

There are 15,873,213.5 iPad cases and stands, and dozens of iPad mounts. While that statement may not be completely accurate, it would be fair to say there are a lot. So what's with another review of the same old stuff? In a word, "System". A complete and comprehensive eco-system of compatible cases, stands and mounts for tablets. And as far as I can see, there may only be a few tablet "Systems" in existence. We're going to look at one - Vogel's RingO Universal Mounting System. Welcome to the Pros, my friend.


Monday, May 9, 2011

The LapDawg X4: A New Breed You Can Cuddle With

Posted by Eric Juillerat in "Laptop Thoughts Accessories" @ 09:00 AM

When life's circumstances breed new technology, great things happen. The LapDawg X4 is a good example. If you use your laptop to get your email in bed, browse the Internet from the chaise longe, or work in non-office environments, the LapDawg X4 is for you! Or, if you are just looking for the ultimate in ergonomic adaptability, you need to read on. Read more...

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

The Joy Factory iPad Wall/Cabinet Mount

Posted by Eric Juillerat in "Apple iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad" @ 07:00 AM

Seinfeld fans out there will recall how George felt about crushed red velvet. To borrow his sentiments, I'd wrap myself in carbon fiber if I could. If it has carbon fiber in it, I have to have it; mountain bike, watch, ring, Lamborghini Aventador, it doesn't really matter. So when I saw that The Joy Factory had just released a carbon fiber iPad mount, well, yeah, it had to come home. Read more...

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Staying Cool with the iGo Arctic Laptop Cooling Pad

Posted by Hooch Tan in "Laptop Thoughts News" @ 01:30 PM

"If you’ve ever had to deal with laptops overheating, I’m pretty sure you would’ve gotten a laptop cooler by now. But as some of you would know by now, every laptop gets hot in different places, and not every after market solution can work for the same laptop."

The proliferation of notebook cooling pads has always made me wonder about the designs of notebooks. If a notebook needs a cooling pad of some sort, does that not suggest that the design of the notebook is a bit flawed? A notebook should be designed to function under most regular use conditions. I can kind of understand situations were you are in bed or on the couch and need to put your technological wonder on a cushy surface that might blow airflow, but for most other times, if a laptop reaches a point where it is overheating, it is time to think of going with a different laptop. I guess if you have to use a cooling pad, one like the iGo, where the fan is movable is a nice touch, but does it compare any better than those with multiple fans? What is your experience with cooling pads? Are they worth it?

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Scottevest Turns 10 and Celebrates With a Sale

Posted by Richard Chao in "Windows Phone Accessories" @ 01:00 AM

"I wanted to let you know about our 10th Anniversary Sale, and to thank you for all your support over the years. In celebration we're holding a large sale offering 40% off some of our most popular products... Again, thanks for the support, Scottevest wouldn't be what it is today without it."

Scottevest, the clothing company that made it possible for us to carry all our mobile tech at one time without having to resort to the Batman utility belt is turning 10. To celebrate, they are having a big sale with up to 40% off on selected items. Products in Scottevest's catalog range from boxers to trench coats and everything in between.

To take advantage of this sale remember to use promo code 10SALE40.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Everki Track Laptop Messenger Bag

Posted by Chris Baxter in "Laptop Thoughts Accessories" @ 09:00 AM

Product Category: Laptop Bag
Manufacturer: Everki
Where to Buy: Amazon (affiliate link)
Price: $59.99
Specifications: Length: 16.54 in., Width: 7.09 in., Height: 12.99 in., Weight 1.98 lbs.


  • Handy compartment designed for Apple iPad or any other similar sized tablet computer;
  • Lots of additional compartments to store other electronics, including power cords;
  • Small enough in size to take anywhere, yet can hold a lot more equipment than you would think.
  • Clasps on front flap are difficult to manage while on the move;
  • The bag only accommodates up to a 15.6" laptop.

Summary: The Everki Track Laptop Messenger Bag, is a bag with a twist. It comes with a compartment especially designed to carry an Apple iPad. Given the wildly popular reception the iPad has received since its debut, there have been a lot of products designed to carry and protect it, but this is the first time I have seen a solution designed into a laptop bag, and that makes it rather unique. While some people might argue that the whole reason they bought an iPad was to ditch their laptop, for other people, myself included, that just isn't realistic. As handy as my iPad is, there are just some things that are done more efficiently with a laptop. So how do I easily carry both? Everki attempts to answer that question with their Track Laptop Bag. Just how successful are they? Let's see!


Sunday, December 12, 2010

Reach Far With the BearExtender PC

Posted by Hooch Tan in "Laptop Thoughts News" @ 08:00 AM

"Now there's a PC version, aptly and cunningly titled BearExtender PC. It too is a $45 ($44.97 to be exact) 802.11n adapter and it looks much the same as its fruitier brethren. It's a reasonably small capsule, about the size of an Altoids tin but thinner and, naturally, proudly displaying a 2dBi gain antenna, which thankfully pivots and rotates in all sorts of directions."

At first blush, the BearExtender PC looks like a wireless network adapter with an upgraded antenna. It turns out that this is what it is. If your notebook's wireless antenna is weak or you find yourself on the fringe of network connectivity this might be the solution for you. There are other network cards that allow external antennas to be hooked up to them, but they usually stick directly out from your USB port and where do you put the antenna? This looks to be a good all-in-one solution.

The other benefit of more powerful Wi-Fi adapters like this is that they tend to hold a stronger signal with better throughput so if you use your laptop to stream video, this can also prove useful. One thing not mentioned in the review, however, I would like to see is do these more powerful adapters help punch through a congested neighbourhood like mine. Living in an apartment building, there are more wireless networks discovered by my notebooks than there are tribbles in a quadrotriticale storage bin. Because of all that wireless noise, I find some notebooks drop their signal every now and again. Would this be the solution I am looking for? What other possible benefits do you see to using an improved Wi-Fi adapter like this?

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