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All posts tagged "accessories"

Monday, May 2, 2011

Cute USB Flash Drives That Are So Bulky They're Gag Gifts

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 05:00 PM

It seems as though these were for a project created by a Singapore-based design studio, so they can't be purchased anywhere. They're incredibly clever, but rather impractical. Still, I might buy one for a friend who would appreciate the uniqueness of the gift if someone were to sell them...

Friday, April 1, 2011

Use the iPhone as an Audio Recorder for Your Video DSLR

Posted by Lee Yuan Sheng in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 08:00 AM

"If you’ve shot any video on a DSLR you already know it’s not ideal. The form factor of the camera isn’t made for video and the need to manually focus on a moving subject can be tricky. One of the weakest parts is the camera is its microphone."

Audio is an important part of videos and movies, but the recent video DSLRs only treat audio like an afterthought. My own GH1 as auto-gain which cannot be turned off, and you can imagine how annoying it can be. So is using the iPhone a case of replacing a mediocre solution with another? Surprisingly, despite the poor quality of the iPhone's microphone (the author admits as much) the ability to move it off-camera does bring quite a few benefits, namely, no camera operation noise. There are also a couple of good recommendations in the article for those looking at better quality solutions without breaking the bank, so go check out the article!

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Look Ma, No Hands! The PodFlexPro Reviewed

Posted by Matthew Shanks in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 07:00 AM

Travelling light is a challenge for many people. Travelling light if you're a technology buff is next to impossible. Between laptops, netbooks, cameras, phones, iPods, iPads, cords and chargers, many travellers now carry a bag filled with just their grown-up toys. Add a toddler into the mix and you have a recipe for carry-on luggage trouble. I found myself in this situation not too long ago travelling on vacation with my wife and daughter on a long flight (just shy of seven hours). I knew keeping an 18 month old toddler amused (not to mention myself) on such a lengthy flight would be a challenge, so I stuffed my gadget bag and off we went. Read more...

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Pose Your Gadgets with the Friendly Neighborhood Spiderpodium

Posted by Anjuan Simmons in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 07:00 AM

Gadgets are usually in one of two places: a hand or a storage location (pocket, carrying case, purse, etc.). However, there are many times when a gadgets needs to be in a "third place". For example, a digital camera may need to be put on a table to take a time delayed picture of a group of people. Or, a smartphone with GPS capability may need to be positioned on a bicycle handle in order to measure speed, pace, and distance along a trail. The Spiderpodium ($19.99 direct) by Breffo seeks to be the accessory that you reach for during these "third place” moments. Read more...

Zacuto Delivers Point 'n' Shoot Pro for Small Cameras

Posted by Lee Yuan Sheng in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 05:30 AM

"Small, lightweight, quick and portable! Zacuto's Point and Shoot is the ideal handgrip stabilization system for shooting stable, smooth professional video with any small point and shoot cameras, HD Flip and similar cameras that have a 1/4 20" thread on the bottom."

US$89 for a handle to attach to your point and shoot camera. I'm sure it'll help in stabilising the camera; I'm just not sure most owners of such cameras care (as evidenced by the number of nausea-inducing videos on YouTube). Zacuto's usual customers will not be using a puny point and shoot, will they?

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Six Products To Help You Disconnect From Tradition Content Providers

Posted by Richard Chao in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 10:20 PM

"There's more than a few ways to cut the cord. So here we go, the six best devices listed in order of relevance that will help cut your household's dependence on pay TV."

It seems these days most people are looking for ways to cut their monthly expenses. One item that has always been in the bullseye is the cable or satellite bill. While many people consider it, I know I have, few people actually go all the way and pull the trigger. Figuring out how to get the content we're used to consuming without it coming from the traditional provider can be tough. Well, CrunchGear has put together a list of six products that will make the transition easier. Over the air digital TV receiver, Boxee Box, Roku, Tivo, Dell Zino/Mac Mini and your local library. Click the read link to see the rational behind their choices.

I can personally vouch for the Roku box. How about you? Have you used any products from this list? Have you cut the cord yet? Let us know and give us your experiences or other items you'd put in the list.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Can SSDs Compete With HDDs High Capacity and Falling Prices?

Posted by Danny Simmons in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 12:00 PM

"Two-figure pricing like that for laptop hard drives makes solid-state drives look like a luxury purchase by comparison. "HDD and NAND (flash memory) cost per gigabyte are destined to remain an order of magnitude apart for the foreseeable future. SSDs will remain from 10 to 20 times as expensive as HDDs of the same capacity," said Jim Handy, principal analyst at Objective Analysis, a firm that does semiconductor-related market research."

Solid state drives can give you great performance, if that is a high priority for you. But it won't come cheap, and you won't enjoy the larger capacity that hard drives can give you. Hard drive prices are expected to continue to drop. Let's hope that solid state drives can follow this trend as well. But for now, which is most important to you, the speed of solid state drives or the capacity and affordability of hard drives?

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Backing Up Is Not Hard To Do: Reviewing The Synology DS211+

Posted by Hooch Tan in "Digital Home News" @ 03:00 PM

"Synology is one of the rapidly rising players in the SMB (Small to Medium Businesses) / SOHO (Small Office & Home Office) NAS market. This market is a highly competitive one with many players like QNAP, Thecus, Netgear, Drobo, LaCie, Seagate and Western Digital. Consumers with a necessity to store and backup their home media collection are also amongst the customers in this market."

The way I see it, with Microsoft ceding the SMB and SOHO NAS market to other businesses (Yes, that is what you did when you got rid of Drive Extender, Microsoft.) the market just got much more interesting. While a two-drive system may not seem like a lot at first, keep in mind that three TB drives are becoming more accessible. Unfortunately, while hard drives are cheaper than ever, it seems that the cost of a well performing NAS is not cheap. While power consumption is always a concern, it has often made me wonder, where for the cost of one of these performance NAS devices, you can purchase a low end desktop computer and load it up with NAS software like FreeNAS. Doing so would not be that much more work than setting up something from Synology or Drobo either. Anyone think these are worth the price?

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.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Toss That Mouse Pad: The Logitech Performance Mouse MX Reviewed

Posted by Frank Cox in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 08:00 AM

Product Category: Wireless/USB Mouse
Manufacturer: Logitech®
Where to Buy: Amazon (affiliate link)
Price: $74.93 USD
System Requirements: Windows® XP and Later, Mac OS® X 10.4 and later, with USB port.
Specifications: 110 V AC and USB charging system

  • Plugging in the charging cable is a little tricky;
  • Pressing forward and back buttons;
  • Side to side movement of scroll wheel.

Summary: The Logitech Performance MX has a nice, comfortable feel. It is very responsive and the battery lasts all day for me, which is roughly 12 hours of continuous use - I plug it in to charge every night. For me it has worked on wood, glass, fabric, and laminated desktops. The Logitech® Unifying receiver was plugged in and the mouse connected right away with no problems using Windows 7. Read more...

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Peaking Behind the Curtain on Windows 8

Posted by Todd Klein in "Digital Home News" @ 07:00 PM

"At this year's Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Microsoft announced that Windows 8 will support system-on-a-chip architectures using ARM processors. Unlike the x86 architecture that today's Windows laptops and desktops work with, ARM-based chips tend to run such low-power devices as tablets and smartphones. In his CES keynote speech, Microsoft CEO Steve Ball­mer said, "This announcement is really all about enabling a new class of hardware, and new silicon partners for Windows, to bring the widest possible range of form factors to the market." In other words, Windows won't be just for laptops and desktops anymore."

The next Windows operating system is due out in 2012 and rumors that it's going to be a game changer have accelerated since CES. Code named "I Hope it's Not Too Buggy," the new system is meant to address an entirely new set of devices, including TVs, smart phones, notebooks, and tablets. The themes are clear and important for Microsoft to get right: virtualization for ease of use, quick starts and portability, and a focus on untethering devices and storing settings, apps and data in the Cloud. There's talk that Microsoft will launch a new developer framework and support it's own app store to push the system even further.

I'm sure whenever Microsoft launches a new OS, the folks at TWBA Worldwide start to lick their chops. They're the smartypants who created Apple's "Get a Mac" ad campaign which successfully ran from 2006 to 2010 and sarcastically tweaked Microsoft's prowess in building elegant operating systems. So, will Windows 8 be Microsoft's clever retort? Will Windows 8 join Android and Apple O/S and a viable third choice for developers? Ultimately, will this put Microsoft back on top with consumers?

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Sandisk and Kingston Announce SDHC UHS-I Cards

Posted by Lee Yuan Sheng in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 11:30 AM

As announced previously, the SDHC UHS-I standard allows for faster speeds on SD cards, and now Sandisk and Kingston have announced their respective versions. I am still wondering what UHS-I devices are there though! Hit the links for information on pricing.

Kingston UltimateXX SDHC UHS-I

Sandisk Extreme Pro SDHC UHS-I

Friday, January 14, 2011

Sony Releases Portable HDMI Video Monitor for Videographers and Filmmakers

Posted by Lee Yuan Sheng in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 09:30 AM

One of the difficult things in using a DSLR for recording video is that most of them do not have articulating screens, and even then the screen can be quite small. Enter Sony with CLM-V55 that can be both AC and battery powered and connects via HDMI to your camera. The neat thing about it is that the sound picked up by the camera can be passed through the screen to an external headphone set for monitoring use. Two problems solved with one accessory! The screen also adds pro features like peaking to check on exposure and magnification to check on focus accuracy. Expect it in March.

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!


Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Eye-fi Cards Get Upgrade to Direct Mode to Allow Direct Transfers from Camera to Phone

Posted by Lee Yuan Sheng in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 07:00 PM

Talk about timing. Just as I was looking forward to see more connected cameras, up comes Eye-fi with a free upgrade to their existing X2 cards. Direct Mode allows the transfer of images from camera to phones using WiFi. This is something I've been looking forward to, as I cannot rely on getting a decent camera in my phones, and using a standalone to share quick photos is a real pain as it stands. Look for the upgrade to come later this year; in the meantime, Nikon, please keep the second slot on the D400 a SD card slot, alright? Thanks!

Monday, January 3, 2011

Canon's Portable Scanner Can Help You to Get Organized in 2011

Posted by Reid Kistler in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 02:00 PM

"The Canon imageFormula P-150 Scan-tini ($295 direct) isn't the smallest scanner I've ever seen, but it's small and light enough to earn its designation as a portable. More important, it may be the smallest scanner possible that offers both portability and the conveniences you'd expect in a desktop scanner.... Canon has managed to shoehorn a 20-page automatic document feeder (ADF) into the P-150, along with duplexing (scanning both sides of a page at the same time) capabilities. Its speed would be a reasonable clip for a desktop scanner, at 15 pages per minute (ppm) for black-and-white and grayscale scans and 30 images per minute (ipm) for duplex scans. In color mode, it's rated at a still reasonable 10 ppm and 20 ipm."

If getting organized is one of your New Year's Resolutions, a nice place to begin is by converting paper documents into electronic ones. But while multi-function printers have made scanners commonplace, few of these include the ability to perform duplex scanning, which can be a great productivity aid. Canon's P-150 combines duplex scanning with reasonable speed and true portability, at a sub $300 (US) price tag. Beyond it's petite size of 1.6" x 11" x 3.7" (folded), portability is enhanced by the P-150's ability to operate off a single USB port, and to scan and save (as an image file) without the need of loading software onto the host machine - although most users will want to load the bundled software, which includes Canon CaptureOnTouch, Nuance PaperPort, and New Soft Presto! BizCard. Certainly, the P-150 should not be considered a high-volume production scanner, but for many people in the SOHO market the small format, portability, and relatively low price should put it on the list of units to consider. Whatever your resolutions are for 2011, here's hoping they reach fruition, and that the new year brings you contentment - along with the all the digital toys - ah... that is "tools" - that your heart desires!

Friday, December 31, 2010

HTC Ventures Into The Living Room

Posted by Nurhisham Hussein in "HTC Android Phones" @ 08:00 AM

"To say that HTC's Media Link is small is an understatement... It's so small that we thought that our friendly government import agents had stolen it from the box that had obviously been jimmied open for inspection while en route to our European test lab."

HTC's ambitions have lately started to venture far from its usual stomping grounds. The HTC Sense team for instance want to extend their UI design into consumer electronics, and some of you might remember the HTC Shift, a marriage between a UMPC slate and Windows Mobile. Here we have another sample of HTC's diversification strategy, albeit a logical one given their proven strength in smartphones. The HTC Media Link leverages on existing DLNA technology to allow wireless media streaming from your HTC smartphone to any DLNA ready screen. It's a neat device, especially for its size, and can act as a WiFi hotspot. Engadget's impressed with it, though they did note some weaknesses (compliance with other DLNA devices, the price) and they think its more suitable for road warriors rather than the home. Think it's suitable for you? Click through the link to read the review.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Bluetooth Speaker Review: Jawbone Jambox vs. Soundmatters foxL v2

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Windows Phone Articles & Resources" @ 07:00 PM

"Two portable speakers clamber into the ring, each boasting big, beautiful sound for their diminutive size. Both cost $200. Both have the same technology inside. The Jawbone Jambox and the Soundmatters foxL v2 with Bluetooth each want to be your wireless audio wunderkind, blasting music and taking Bluetooth calls. At best, you're only going to buy one. Which speaker should you choose? Following our Jambox review, we got our hands on a foxL and put the two head to head, and after the break you'll see which one came out on top -- both literally and figuratively."

What's that? You have the powerful desire to be able to break-dance no matter where you are, putting on a show for passers-by? Then, boy, you'll want to read this review to pick the best wee speaker to allow said possibility!

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Memory Card Standard Upgrades: CompactFlash's Turn This Time

Posted by Lee Yuan Sheng in "Digital Home News" @ 09:00 AM

"Today SanDisk, Sony and Nikon 'announced the joint development of a set of specifications that address the future requirements of professional photography and video markets.'"

CompactFlash still has plenty of life left in it as a professional medium for photographers; its durability and physical size (SD is a bit fiddly to work with in the field) are great plus points. What Nikon, Sandisk and Sony should do next after making them go faster (500 MB/s is the target), larger (2TB cards anyone?) and tougher, is to make a portable and fast CF card reader solution. I have had enough of dangling card readers and fiddly cables I keep on losing.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Wireless N Router Reviews

Posted by Reid Kistler in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 06:30 PM

"You've been getting by with the cheapie router you bought two years ago, so why should you upgrade now? In a word: Performance. And features. Oh, sorry. That's two words. We looked at a host of budget offerings in our last router roundup (February 2010) and didn't find much to get excited about. This time, we asked seven manufacturers to send us the best consumer routers in their stables regardless of price tags."

If you are in the market for a Wireless N router, has taken a look at 7 "top-tier" models, and assigned overall scores ranging from 5 to 9 (presumably on a 10-point scale!). Also included is a summary of each model's features, plus and minus points, as well as several charts showing "real world" performance under a variety of conditions. The article wraps up with a brief look at several new wireless developments, including WiGig and Wi-Fi Direct, which might at least help you to decide whether to hold off your purchase decision pending some new functionality.

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