Cherry Keyboards, Part 1: The G80-3850 MX Brown 3.0

Cherry max board 3.0This is going to be some great reviews this week with Cherry, makers of some great keyboards, as well as being known for Maraschino. Just kidding on that last part, but I do like the Cherry MX-Board 3.0 USB Keyboard with Cherry MX Brown Switch.

In case you are wondering about the Brown switches, this is apparently the color of the switches underneath the keys, and as far as I can tell, are not visible by the user. There are other colors available, such as Black, Red, and Blue. The Brown switches are tactile with some actuating force of 55 cN with a switching port of 2.0 mm.

The other colors have some weird specs as well, and I am not certain about those. However, I had a chance to try it and it feels really…smooth. As most of you know, I review every keyboard by writing a report on it. Case in point, this one, and I am surprised that it is so quiet. It is also easy to install as you just plug it in

This particular one has a full QWERTY layout with over 50 million operations per key, then there is an N-key rollover with up to simultaneous operations of up to 14 keys without any ghosting effects.

If you want to check this out, head over to the Cherry website here for more information and it can be purchased on Amazon for about $132.77.

SleepPhones by AcousticSheep

SleepPhonesThe company of AcousticSheep appears to have a specialty making audio products of a different variety. One of their famous products is the SleepPhones, and the name is enough to say what they do: earbuds for those who sleep.

The SleepPhones are not traditional earbuds, but they have super-thin speakers inside of a soft cozy headband. So I am not even certain if the term of “earbuds” is a worthy description.

So, for those who like to sleep with earbuds on, you will love this. It has a comfortable fit with a fleece headband. The end result is a way to reduce the ambient noise, for those who need that extra music to sleep by, here it is.

Now, these thing is made to plug into anything with a 3.5 mm audio jack, but they come in a wireless option as well. Honestly, I was hoping to review the wireless option, but this seems to do the trick.

The wired version costs $39.95 in midnight black, quiet lavender, and soft gray on the AcousticSheep website. Those are the fleece versions, which are made to warm your head. The breeze version is galaxy blue, sunset pink, and pink leopard and is better for the summertime. What is funny is how it says “one size fits most”, as well as extra large and extra small.

Toast Cases for the iPhone 8 and Microsoft Surface Pro 2017

By now, I have reviewed at least three Toast products in the past few years, and it stands to reason that they would put out covers for the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus, as well as the new Surface Pro 5 (2017). I feel very fortunate to have a chance to review both of these, as I enjoy the Toast products, made in Portland, Oregon.

Toast Real Wood Cover for the iPhone 8

At first, I didn’t think it was necessary, because most iPhone 7/7 Plus products can accommodate the latest models, but it looks like the Toast iPhone 7 model has been replaced with an iPhone 8. In this case, the wooden cover is more than just than just an aesthetic quality with its “designed with heart and cut by lasers” design, but offers at least some protection as well.

Toast iPhone 8After all, that new iPhone 8 has glass on the front and back of it, as we reported upon its initial announcement. I was, of course, warned that putting on the iPhone 8 cover was going to be only slightly difficult, and it is even described by the website as origami-esque. Well, origami is always fun, isn’t it? Putting it on feels like some fun project that is from a kid’s toy kit.

My one concern was that this cover would somehow block the Qi Wireless Capability, but I have been told that this won’t be a problem.

All that, plus you can custom engrave the thing. You should definitely head over to the Toast site and Pay about $34.00 for it in Walnut, Ash, and Ebony.

Toast Real Wood Cover for the Surface Pro 2017 (Pro 5)

So, it looks like Microsoft has the new Surface out, and the laptop/tablet also has a great cover similar to that of Apple’s flagship product. It has what you would expect with the wooden crafted cover, and it is something as well.

Toast Surface Pro 2017I have to admit that I was surprised that it was able to cover the Surface Pro 5, but it does cover them very well, and has all the side wraps and buttons covered. It is made with the same peel-and-stick process for easy application, but that shouldn’t come as any surprise. It is awesome to see that it has four holes in order to show off that Microsoft Log.

There isn’t much more that I can say about this that I haven’t said before. It is available in four types of wood like Walnut, Bamboo, Ebony, and Ash. It is available for about $49.00 on the Toast site.

Our Review of the Olloclip Pivot

Olloclip PivotAt this point in my life as a reviewer, I review an Olloclip product a year. If for some reason that you haven’t heard of Olloclip, they create these photo lenses made for smartphones, particularly for the iPhone, that allow for focuses and a fish-eye lens. The Pivot is essentially a holder for one of their Olloclip lenses, and I’ll start with a disclaimer saying that the Olloclip lens, like the one I reviewed last year, is not included.

It does come with a handle which has that threaded Universal Mounting thing on it. On this particular handle is a button that allows for some rotation, about 225 degrees of spinning. You can see that circle in the middle which allows you to stick your finger for extra support.

The end result is a device that reduces the shakiness in your video. The Pivot also has a Universal Clamp, a 1/4-20 mount for a GoPro adapter. There is also some kind of cold shoe mount so you can put on one of those flash things.

By now, if you are not familiar with my reviews of Olloclip, then you know that I never give them bad reviews. There is a lot of love, work, and care put in Olloclip products, and the Pivot is available for about $49.99 on the Olloclip site.

1More Dual Driver LTNG ANC In-Ear Headphones

1More LTNG ANCIt has been quite a while since I reviewed a 1More product, and I was very pleased to review something new from them for the holidays. The 1More company is very good at making headphones and earbuds that are of a higher quality than the standard, and the Dual Driver LTNG ANC In-Ear Headphones are of that great standard.

So where to begin…hmm. Let’s start with ANC, and what it stands for, which is Active Noise Cancellation. It seems that 1More excels at this, and it is made for reducing noises on an airplane, car, or train. For those that care about these numbers, it has a frequency range of 50-2000 Hz with 20 db Reduction. Apparently, they have five-stars in noise reduction performance and multiple environments, and yeah, I took that from their website.

It all boils down to some terrific sound that is expected from this company. Then there is the dual driver sound with a one balanced armature along with one dynamic driver which works like a mini-tweeter and dynamic driver respectively.

There is also a feature that includes a 5-in-1 controller that feels really unique to me. For a call, you just hit it in the center to answer/hang up, and press and hold to reject a call. As for the music, you hit it in the center to play, toggle left for the previous track, and toggle right for the next track. You can also control the volume and take phone calls.

All of this is put in a very great design package with lightweight alloys and made specifically with the Apple Lightning connector in mind, which is why it won a design award this year. You should be able to purchase them on the 1More Site for $149.99.

Bodyguardz Pure Screen Protector for iPad Pro 10.5 and Trainr for the iPhone 6S/7 Plus

Well, it is time to review another great product from Bodyguardz, and they are very good at making screen protectors. They also make some cases, and today I am going to review both a screen protector and a case.

BodyGuardz Pure Premium Glass Screen Protector for Apple iPad Pro 10.5

bodyguardz Tempered iPad Pro 10.5If you are not familiar with a screen protector, then you probably need one. I remember seeing one of these ten years ago, before the age of smartphones really hit. It is a simple thin piece of glass to keep the touchscreen safe, and the Bodyguardz Pure is Tempered Glass for the iPad Pro 10.5.

This one is made from ion fortified tempered glass that is not just as hard as steel, it is harder than steel. This has some extreme impact and scratch protection that is optically clear with anti-smudge coating.

The end result is one of those screen protectors that goes on pretty easily as it comes with an installation kit and a microfiber cleaning cloth. By the way, it won some innovation awards back at CES 2013.

You should be able to purchase the Bodyguardz Pure Premium Glass Screen Protector for the Apple iPad Pro 10.5 on the Bodyguardz site for $59.95.

BodyGuardz Trainr Case for the iPhone 6/6S/7 Plus

Bodyguardz TrainrI actually reviewed this protect’s brother with the Trainr Pro, but this is just the Trainr Case with Unequal Technology. I’m not certain what makes it unequal, but it is made of sport-grip materials with a clear back and has some composite padding.

Similar to the Bodyguardz Pure, it is able to absorb impact, on contact. Also, this has some impact gel with a polycarbonate back, and the end result feels like a soft grip. The entire thing is actually quite flexible to easily accommodate the iPhone 6/6S/7 Plus, and presumably the iPhone 8 Plus.

If this is something that you like, head on over to the Bodyguardz site and pay $39.95 for it. It is available in Black/Gray, Gray/Blue, Gray/Mint, and Rose Gold/White. About the only difference between the Trainr and the Trainr Pro is that the Trainr Pro has this removable armband.

The MOXYO Mission Wireless Earbuds

Moxyo Mission WirelessIt’s been a year since we have reviewed a MOXYO product, and I enjoyed their earbuds, charging cable, and powerbank. Today, I had a chance to review a Blueooth set of earbuds with the Mission Wireless. I’m not certain if they are called Mission Wireless as a sequel to the Avenue earbuds that I reviewed before (you know, like Mission Avenue), or it is some kind of spy reference like Mission: Impossible.

I will have to say that I will describe the design as minimalist, but this is for lack of a better word. I mean, we live in a world where Bluetooth earbuds are a dime a dozen, even though they don’t cost that much. I find that MOXYO has a good price, and it gives a lot.

I’ll start by getting the specs out of the way, as the Mission Wireless is good for six hours of playtime. The range is the usual 33 feet (10 meters), and I say “usual” because that is what I have discovered is the range for most Bluetooth.

The Mission Wireless has a controller with a quick press for the volume control and long press for skipping forward/backward. The last remaining button is for the on/off to take a phone call, which is again a usual feature for Bluetooth earbuds.

I hope that you aren’t noticing the word “usual” and think that these earbuds are so-so. There is an interesting cable cinch allowing for a “perfect fit”, and that is pretty great.

You should be able to purchase the MOXYO Wireless Earbuds for about $39.99 on the MOXYO site.

UAG 2017 Part 2: Monarch Series for iPhone 8/7/6S and PYLO Series iPhone 8/7/6S Cases

Well, in addition to the Monarch and PYLO series for the iPhone X that I reviewed yesterday, today is going to be another UAG (Urban Armor Gear). This time, we are talking about the iPhone 8/7/6S and iPhone 8/7/6S Plus.

Monarch Series iPhone 8/7/6S Plus

UAG Monarch iPhone 7 and 6 PlusWell, this is the time where I could seriously just cut and paste the Monarch review for the iPhone X. I suppose that the Monarch case for the iPhone 8 Plus/7Plus/6S Plus/6 Plus is just that, but it is bigger.

Yes, it has the same 5-layers of protection, and the top grain leather and alloy metal hardware. It also has that same terrific look with the honeycomb traction grip.

There is something that I forgot to mention in my last review of the Monarch Series. It meets 2X military drop-test standards, and I don’t know why I forgot to write about the protection of this series offers.

Also, I forgot to mention that some of the colors of Monarch for the iPhone X look really similar. Not so with the iPhone 8/7/6 Plus, as it only comes in three options: Platinum, Graphite, and Crimson. The Platinum is kind of silver with black, and the Graphite is the one that you see here.

You can purchase the Monarch for the iPhone 8 Plus and its accommodating series of Apple smartphones on the UAG site for $59.95.

PYLO Series for the iPhone 8/7/6S

UAG PYLO iPhone 8Again, there is hardly any difference between the PYLO for the iPhone x and the one for the iPhone 7/6S. It has that transparent case with soft corners, but there is one thing that I want you to notice.

Just look at the images on my two articles. Go on, I’ll wait. Do you see it yet? Here’s a hint: look in the corner for the hole for the camera. You can see that the iPhone 8 version has a hole that is horizontal, but the PYLO for the iPhone X has a more vertical look to it. Yeah, I thought that I would point that out because I needed something to write about, and no one else is writing about that.

So, you can purchase get the PYLO for the iPhone 8/7/6S Case for $39.95 on the UAG site.

UAG 2017 Part 1: PLYO and Monarch Series, both for the iPhone X

Since the unveiling of the new iPhone, I have been itching to try out some of their newest accessories. I was pleased to receive in my mailbox the more new ones for the iPhone X. Today, I will discuss the PLYO and Monarch Series from our old friend, UAG (Urban Armor Gear).

Just as a reminder of the iPhone X, it was kind of a “one more thing” at Apple’s big event on September 12. The iPhone 8 will accommodate last year’s iPhone 7 model, but the iPhone X is an entirely different animal. It has a big price and a 5.8-inch screen that goes from edge to edge, with no home button.

PLYO Series iPhone X Case Review

UAG Plyo iPhone XI would imagine that it would be difficult to design a case for the iPhone X with its all-screen design. It’s pretty clear that they went with the hard plastic route, and the PYLO has a clear look, at least on its backside.

It is entirely different feel than the edges, which are very soft and flexible. It is designed to clearly be cushioning the sides, and the tactile buttons stand out well. Of course, it is set up to meet military drop-test standards.

It’s all very great, and it is pretty light as well. Just to let you know, it is set up for Apple Pay and the wireless charging feature. It’s a solid case, and can be purchased on the UAG site for $39.95 in Ice (Clear), Ash (Gray), and Crimson.

Monarch Series iPhone X Case

UAG Monarch iPhone XI’ll start by explaining that the Monarch is similar to PYLO, as it is Apple Pay and Wireless charging compatible, but it is a different set-up. Unlike the PYLO, it isn’t made with a solid plastic mold, but it boasts “5 layers of protection”.

Part of these layers is grain leather and alloy metal hardware. The end result is what has become almost a trademark for UAG with what looks like steel framework and black fill-in. Yeah, I can’t figure out how to describe it either, but there are some weird screws in it.

As for the sides, they are very soft with “honeycomb traction grip”, which you can see in the picture is aptly named. The tactile buttons are also prominent, which is also a part of their “premium design and precise engineering”.

The Monarch case is also available on the UAG site in Graphite, Platinum, Crimson, Black, and Carbon Fiber for $59.95.

Project 475 Kits Will Technologically Prepare the Next Generation

Project 475 aConsidering that the younger generation is addicted to tech, it is up to the older one to teach them how to make better tech. This is why there is such a push for STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mechanics) education, and there have been a lot of educational toys to help with this.

The issue is that many of these educational toys are muy expensivo. As someone who has written a book on Lego MINDSTORMS, I know that those kits cost a few hundred dollars. Wouldn’t it be easier to create a kit that can teach kids about how to create educational electronic kits with nothing more than materials found in the average home?

That is just what the 475 Kits are designed to do, and it is quite a bright idea. Not only that, these kits will be available to users on a subscription basis, so you get a new kit every once in a while around a theme.

Now, this idea is just a Kickstarter project, at least until it can get its proper funding (and you should give to it). The plan is that the first kit be a Home Audio Kit. The first would be a Collaboard for using resistance using graphite pencils, the second is an electric ukulele, and then a DJ Mixing Station, which you can see in the image.

All of these can be done with the Andruino Board and materials like bottle caps, CDs, and a hot glue gun. In fact, if you click on the link below, you will see a video of the next project, which is a hand grasping.

Hand Grasp

Project 475 bYou can imagine what this does for the user as he or she can create something of their own with simple materials. Suddenly, creating some technical creation becomes easier, and you don’t have to buy a lot of expensive equipment, like a 3-D printer and such.

Well, I am looking forward to the day when these kits become available for subscription, as these 475 Kits will make a smarter and more tech-savvy generation. Until then, please go over to project 475’s Kickstarter page and donate to them.