iHome for the Holidays 2017, Part 5: Bluetooth Splash Speaker (iBT77)

Well, today is my last review of an iHome product, unless I can somehow get more before year’s end. This time, it is another Bluetooth speaker with the iBT77.

Of course, this Bluetooth speaker is a bit different than the last time with the iBT374. This one may not have that color accent, but it is a water resistant with an iP65 rating. I’m not certain how to describe the look of this particular speaker, but it seems to have a line around it which is apparently made for slip-resistance. Oh, it has a carrying strap.

It certainly has a lot of features for a Bluetooth speaker, such as it can double as a speakerphone. Also, it has that Melody voice powered music assistant, which allows you to play music from iHeartRadio, Spotify, and…yeah, I have talked about this before.

You should be able to purchase the iBT77 in black with black, black with blue, and black with red for about $49.99 on the iHome site.

M-EDGE PackLight, Tech Sackpack with Battery, and 8000 mAh Power Bank

I always like reviewing M-EDGE products, and I was very pleased that I had the chance to review three of them for this particular article. I seem to have a them of chargers, and I am reviewing the Packlight, Tech Sackpack with Battery, and the 8000 mAh Power Bank.

M-EDGE Packlight

The PackLight is a very interesting gadget as it is a mobile 3200 mAh battery. The thing is that it is also a flashlight. I’ve actually seen a lot of mobile batteries with a light on them, but the PackLight definitely emphasizes the light part. The end result is about 8-16 hours of continuous headlamp use. That, or two phone charges.

Their is a modular mounting system that will allow the PackLight to be clipped on, attached magnetically, or it can be attached to any GoPro style mount. Since the GoPro is a camera, the PackLight is certainly there to give you light, and it is good for hi-beam, low-beam, pulse and strobe modes. By the way, it is also IPX4 water resistant, so use this light at the beach!

If this is something that you might want, feel free to head on down to the M-EDGE store and lay down $39.99 for it.

M-EDGE mAh Power Bank

It’s time to talk about another M-EDGE product that everyone probably has, a mobile battery. This is not a 3200 mAh battery like the PackLight, but this one has 8000 mAh.

This one is designed to charge anything with a micro USB or Lightning cable. It tucks away in battery, and it is sufficient for charging a phone for an additional 50 hours (that’s 16 hours on most tablets).

By the way, there is an automatic energy-saving feature that shuts off the battery after 15 seconds in standby mode. It also protects the device and battery from over-charging. There is also four indicator lights which are a standard for these mobile batteries.

You can get the M-EDGE 8000 mAh Power Bank for about $29.99 on the M-EDGE site.

M-EDGE Tech Sackpack with Battery

The last product I reviewed is one that I have seen before, from M-EDGE, in a different form. You can read my review of the Bolt Backpack here, and this appears to be a downsized version of it.

While the Bolt Backpack was a full-on backpack to comfortably hold your laptop/tablet, the Tech Sackpack is more of an athletic bag. At least it isn’t something mesh like the 2016 CES bag.

The important thing is that it has an included battery of 4,000 mAh, which is great for charging a smartphone or tablet. All you have to do is jack in your charging cord and blammo! You are ready to go, but I can’t speak on how much power you will get.

So, if you are looking for a little bit of power or something, head on down to the M-EDGE store and pay $29.99 in Black with Blue and Gray with Lime.

iHome for the Holidays 2017, Part 4: Bedside Stereo Speaker System for Amazon Echo Dot (iAVS1)

It is very funny that I am writing about iHome’s Beside Stereo Speaker System for Amazon Echo Dot (also known as “Spot for the Dot” or iAVS1). I have recently discovered a show known as Mr. Robot, and in the second season, there is not only a huge twist but a character who converses with Alexa.

I have to admit, that I haven’t had the chance to review Amazon’s Alexa device so I can constantly as it questions. However, I am going to set up this article in the form of an interview.

Me: Alexa, what is iHome’s Bedside Stereo Speaker System for the Amazon Echo Dot?

Alexa: Also known as the iAVS1, this “spot for the dot” is made for the Amazon Echo Dot. It is a compact bedside clock speaker.

Me: How does one connect the Dot to the iAVS1?

Alexa: It can be directly connected via audio with the hardwired aux-in cable.

Me: So what can I do with this?

Alexa: You can ask me anything, and I will try and provide you with the correct answer within the capability of my programming.

Me: Can you play my music?

Alexa: Whatever the Echo Dot is connected to, the iAVS1 amplifies the sound with a Reson8 speaker chamber.

Me: Can I set my alarm with this?

Alexa: Absolutely, yes.

Me: What powers the iAVS1?

Alexa: It is powered by a 100V-240V universal AC adapter.

Me: Can I power the Dot with the iAVS1?

Alexa: Yes, through MicroUSB cable connections.

Me: Is there an option for a battery backup?

Alexa: Yes, with 2 AAA backup batteries for the clock, which are included with the iAVS1.

Okay, just to let you know, I didn’t actually have a conversation with Alexa to get this faux interview. Truth be told, I have no idea if Alexa would answer a question such as “how much does this cost”.

The answer is $69.99, and it is available on the iHome site.

Our Review of the Matias Wireless Aluminum Keyboard with Backlight

Last year, I had the opportunity to review the wireless Matias Aluminum keyboard. I suppose that it only seems justified that I review the Wireless Aluminum Keyboard with Backlight.

If you recall from that review, I said that the basic design was essentially an Apple keyboard. I said that I said that I was having trouble attaching it to my PC, and said that I would put some Bluetooth on it. As much I would like to say that Matias took my advice, I think that they were just developing the Wireless Aluminum Keyboard with Backlight.

You can definitely see that the backlight certainly gives the Matias wireless keyboard a Minority Report feel. I don’t think I could come up with a better adjective, actually. Considering that both the Quiet Pro and Ergo Pro keyboards, which I have also reviewed, sport an ebony look, the blue glow is very awesome change of pace.

Since this is a wireless keyboard, and Bluetooth, then you are going to want a good battery. Fortunately, this one is set with 1,600 mAh, which I am told is five to 12 times bigger than most wireless keyboards, which is good enough for a year. I am also told that there is a second rechargeable battery just for the backlight, and this one will last one or two weeks in between charges. By the way, charging is done via Micro-USB to USB.

Now it is time to talk about the Bluetooth capability. I suppose that is good for all kinds of devices like iOS, Android, Windows, or…I’m sure there is something else that I am forgetting. While I am on the subject of operating systems, I should say that the wireless keyboard has Mac-friendly function keys.

If this sounds like something that interests you, you can get it on the Matias site for $139.

Body Shaming and #MeToo

I came across a post by someone in a Facebook group I am a part of. One more story of a girl who was sent home because her body was a “distraction.” Her crime? She was wearing a t-shirt with a little bit of cleavage showing. She happened to be a more well-endowed girl, so it didn’t really matter that her shirt was pretty modest. She didn’t have a low scooping neckline, but a tiny bit of line appeared at the top.

This girl was sent home because her collarbones showed!

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you have been living under a rock lately, you may have missed the #metoo movement that has been spreading across social media that has women acknowledging that they have been raped, molested, or have received unwanted, unsolicited sexual advances from men. This is in response to the news of Hollywood’s Harvey Weinstein, and the women who have come forward about the acts that he did.

There are some things in our American(and dare I say “Christian”) culture that I believe needs to change. One thing that we need to stop doing is shaming girls for what they wear. Now, I’m not saying that anything goes when it comes to school dress codes. There are reasonable things to expect students to wear. But when people accuse shoulders, legs, collar bones, and navels for causing boys to be distracted, I think we are sending the wrong message. First, we tell girls that they are responsible for how boys see them. Second, we tell boys that they can’t help themselves, and feed into the rape culture issue that has been brewing for years.

I have two young boys-one is a teenager, and I believe in teaching them that shoulders, legs, and midriffs aren’t a thing to be afraid of on women. How is it the male species can survive seeing girls and women in swim suits on a beach or at a pool, but the minute they step away from water, those shoulders and thighs become pornography? How are we teaching our young men that women should be respected, but then we body shame them and tell little girls they are immodest when they wear a sleeveless sundress?

Finally, we need to speak up against “locker room talk.” When Conservatives elected a man into presidency and dismiss his attitude toward women and things he has said as “locker room talk,” it sent a poor message to boys.

 

iHome for the Holidays 2017, Part 3: Bluetooth Waterproof + Shockproof 20 Watt Stereo Speaker (iBT374)

Now it is time for me to do another Bluetooth Speaker from iHome. For the record, the last time was the waterproof speaker iBT9 that I did at last year’s “iHome for the Holidays”. The iBT374 is different, and for a lot of good reasons.

I might as well start by talking about what is similar to other speakers. The iBT374 is iP67 rated so it is waterproof and dustproof. Of course that is practically a standard for Bluetooth speakers these days. What makes this particular one a whole lot of fun is that not only does this speaker float, but the iBT374 is framed with colors.

In this case, there are five color changing modes with multiple colors for some seriously wow-whee effects. It has fast color blend, slow color blend, your favorite color, a preset pulsing mode, or you can set a pulse to the music.

What is interesting is that this speaker, which is quite rugged, can be used with another speaker for some true stereo. Oh, by the way, it works with iHome’s free Melody voice powered music assistant to play music from iHeartRadio, Spotify, and more.

So how is the music on this thing? Quite good, thanks to the passive subwoofer. Heck, it even can be used as a speakerphone. The only spec that I haven’t given yet is the battery life, and it is good for eight hours.

Oh, I also forgot to give the price. It is available for $99.99 on the iHome site. By the way, if you are thinking that this is a great gift, then you would be right.

The Review of the New Jabra Elite Sport

Normally, I don’t do a review of a product twice, but I believe that the Jabra Elite Sport has a new version of itself different from my last review of the product. So let us talk about it.

I’ll start by getting the obvious out of the way and explain that these are wireless earbuds. That means that each dinky one has a speaker inside, and they charge by putting them in this little box. We’ve been over this ground before, honestly.

Let’s talk about what is new, and that would be the battery. It would appear that it is good for 50 percent more, which means that you can have 4.5 hours of play time for about 13.5 hours of power. I did the math from the last version, and it had 9 hours of power, so yeah, that is a 50 percent improvement. Not bad.

I am not certain whether this new version has had any redesign of its basic shape, but they still have the superior fit that is secure. Now, the Elite Sport is made to resist some serious sweat, so it is good that you can count on that with a 3-year warranty against sweat damage. That, I have no idea if it is new or not.

Oh, let’s talk about getting fit, as the Jabra Elite Sport has an integrated fitness app also known as Jabra Sport Life. It uses the in-ear precision hear rate monitor to be your coach, in real-time. I could probably write a separate article on that, but I will leave that to a full-time athlete.

The one thing that has changed is the price. They used to be $249.99, but now they can be purchased on the Jabra site for about $199.99.

iHome for the Holidays 2017, Part 2: The Bluetooth Docking Clock Radio + Triple Charging with Watch Charger (iPLWBT5)

I believe that the first time that I reviewed an iHome product, it was one of their iPod docks. This is a rather antiquated product, but the iPhone and now the Apple Watch has created the need for a new kind of dock with this Bluetooth Docking Clock Radio + Triple Charging with Watch Charger (iPLWBT5).

Being an iPod/iPhone dock is not the only thing old school about this, as it definitely hearkens back to the days of alarm clock radios. Yeah, if you remember the eighties or even the nineties, then you probably have one of those things. I’ll go ahead and highlight the alarm feature of dual alarms and separate wake times.

As you can see, you have the option of plugging in an iDevice and the Apple Watch. Both are set up to charge, and the iPhone/iPod cradle is set up for a Lightning charger. Oh, did I mention there is a USB charging port? Because there is one.

By the way, you can stream your audio thanks to its Bluetooth compatibility. This also works as a great speakerphone, and there is some voice control as well. I believe that the Melody Music Assistant, which seems to be some kind of new feature for all iHome products, is made for using your voice for accessing music from iHeartRadio, Spotify, or others.

As for other features, let’s talk about how you can sync the clock with an iOS device. Then there is an auto dimming feature that can somehow sync with the environment. Then there is the 6 FM presets, because this is what it does.

In short, this iHome iPhone/iPod dock is really made to compliment your room, not to mention your home. It can be purchased on the iHome site for about $129.99.

Our Review of the Logitech G433, a 7.1 Wired Surround Gaming Headset

It’s been a while since I reviewed a Logitech product, and the last time was a pair of gaming headphones known as the G231 Prodigy. I have no idea if Logitech’s G433 is some kind of deliberate follow-up to the G231 Prodigy, but they are one great set of gaming headphones.

The G433 is made for simply whatever gaming that you are into, which includes the PC, Mobile phone, Sony PS4, Xbox One, and the Nintendo Switch. Yes, it can do all that, and it has 7.1 Surround Sound Potential Audio with 360 degrees of positional audio.

I have to admit that I find the G433 to be very light, which is great considering that the drivers inside them are incredibly grand with clear highs, precise treble, and great bass. This is good for hearing not just your game, but anyone in your multiplayer team. Not only that, you can customize the sound for just about anything.

The G433 not only has a removable boom microphone, but all the cables can be quickly removed as well. Now, just so you know, there is an adapter required for some particular units that you work with it.

It is a pair of gaming headphones that I will recommend, and it is available on the Logitech site for $99.99 with free shipping in black, red, blue, and a limited edition of blue camo.

iHome for the Holidays 2017, Part 1: iHome FIT (iB71) Bluetooth Earbuds

So, it seems that with the holiday season coming up, this means that I will be reviewing a lot of products, and I have already started. Still, I have been reviewing products from iHome for years, and I am pleased to do so once again. I’m going to do five this week, and I am going to start with the iHome FIT, a water-resistant pair of wireless sport earbuds.

I have reviewed products like this in the past before, and they are very similar to the iB73 that I reviewed last year. As you can see, these are made for those who are into physical fitness, and the earbuds have a shape made to contort to the inner ear.

For those who want to have earbuds that are resistant to sweat, you should definitely look into this pair as it is IPX5-rated. Let’s talk about other specs like Bluetooth 4.0 for wireless capability, good for 30-feet away (typical Bluetooth range), and 4 hours of music or talking. Yes, it has that microphone so you can play/pause/answer calls at the touch of a button.

One feature that you might be interested in is the Melody Music Assistant that is good for using your voice in order to access music while on the road. So you can just say things like “play hits on iHeartRadio” or “play on Spotify”, and it will happen.

It is quite a decent pair of earbuds, made for those who like to be active. The only thing left to talk about is the price. You can get it on the iHome site for $39.99.