Logiix Bluetooth Headphones Review

Logiix Bluetooth Headphones

I have always been a big fan of Bluetooth Headphones for my workouts. I find it tiring to have headphone cords snag on my clothes or equipment so when the Logiix Bluetooth Headphones arrived I was happy to start using them.

Logiix Bluetooth Headphones
Logiix Bluetooth Headphones

I previously used and reviewed a couple pairs of Jabra headphones back in 2014 and 2015. They were the first company to send us BlueTooth headphones. They were reliable and durable and lasted me a while but I lost a pair and the price tag of 120$ to replace was too much to bear.

Logiix’s has its own line of Bluetooth headphones, the Blue Piston tuneFREQS 360 BT. They have full stereo sound and are Noise-isolating in-ear as well. I liked that they have the inline mic & controls right on the unit. I cranked them up to full volume and could not keep the headphones in my ears. I would not recommend turning them up above half way. They are currently 59.99 via the Logiix website which is a great price for Bluetooth headphones.

They synced easily with my iPhone 5s and use Bluetooth version 4.1. The Logiix website notes that they are compatible with Apple and most Android devices. They will work with the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus. They also come with a Neck strap that allows you to easily slot the headphones in and have them sit comfortable around your neck.

We have also review other Logiix products including the wired version of these headphones and you can check out the Tune Freqs post. We also suggest looking at the Logiix website for more information on their headphones.

Power up #backtoschool with power solutions from #Logiix

Logiix

LogiixBack to school is a busy time and if you are on the go a lot you’ll invariably need to charge your smartphone. Logiix has a great selection of charging solutions including a couple we have been using for a while.

Piston Power Multi 3000

Retailing at 54.99, this portable pack has connectors for Apple (lightning) and Android (Micro USB). I use a Galaxy S7 and an iPhone so it works well for me. It’s a handy charger because it is so small and lightweight you hardly know you are carrying it.

It will charge your smartphone 1.5 times. I was able to coax a little more charge out of it because my iPhone was not at 0% when I decided to charge. I find these take about an hour or so to charge a phone so be aware that it is not an instant charge.

Piston Power Slim 360

A little bulkier than the Multi 3000, The Piston Power Slim 360 is another great charger from Logiix. It will cost you 49.99 to buy but will charge a phone 3 times vs 1.5. The Lightning and Micro USB chargers are not built in so you will have to carry one of those cable types with you when you need to charge. Not a huge deal.

The Slim 360 is the better of the two charges in my option. I felt more confident with it if i dropped it or had to lug it around. Perhaps it was the sturdy metal construction and the appearance it gives of looking like a small external drive.

Hardware issues plague more great offerings from Logiix

Piston-Connect-XL-Flat-Woven-2TWe received a bunch of samples from Logiix and have had no issues with them until recently.

One of their Sync and Charge Jolt cables broke as the Lightning connector piece completely snapped out of the front of the cable. While it surprised me I have had this happen before with another cable by Belkin.

Now to be sure cables like this take a lot of pounding and abuse and the Apple Lightning Connectors are less durable than these. It does make you wonder about the testing as well as the Apple certification that these products go through though and we suggest being cautious with these types of cables.

Logiix graciously replaced them with the Piston Connect Flat and the Piston Connect XL Flat Woven. They have proven to be much more durable and reliable as I have folded and stuffed them in a drawer, carted them around in a work bag and placed them in my car. In short, I’ve put them to the test.

The Logiix Piston Connect XL Flat Woven Cable is an ultra-durable 3M Lightning cable
while the Piston Connect Flat 1.5m Lightning Cable is an ultra flexible and durable sync and charge cable for Apple devices with Lightning Connectors. I loved the 3M cable because of it’s length and I was able to easily sit on my bed and charge my iPad while watching programs on Netflix. Normally I need an extension cord to do this.

Both cables are certified to meet Apple performance standards and I am little weary of this this time given my previous experience. I’m sure these cables will measure up.

The Piston Connect XL Flat Woven Cable retails for 46.01 in Canada and the Piston Connect Flat 1.5m retails for 40.26.

Zus – the smart car charger @nondainc #cool #tech for #cars #acura #honda #gm #ford #toyota #subaru #audi #mazda #nissan

Zus is a device for charging your smartphone quickly on the go. The vendor tagline calls it “the smart car charger” because it can be connected to your smartphone via an app which can be used to locate your vehicle using GPS technology. I’ve used the device and found the vendor’s claims hold true – the device and app do work in tandem to record your vehicle’s location. And the charging technology worked as claimed – my iPhone 6 charged in about 3.5 hours, which is much faster than other car chargers I’ve tried.

Where the GPS location technology would really come in handy is if you’re a travelling consultant or sales-person and frequently have to leave your vehicle for work related reasons. I could see this working particularly well if you’re in an unfamiliar or foreign city as a mobile worker. Another scenario where the location technology might assist is at a large sporting event, for example when you need to leave your vehicle in an enormous parking lot.

There’s an app for both Apple iOS and Android platforms. Additionally, the device is made from military grade materials and will continue to work well even on the hottest summer days when the interior of your vehicle gets extremely hot. The vendor claims the device will work up to 100 degrees Celsius –  however I haven’t had the chance to test that out here in Metro Vancouver this winter. The temperature hasn’t gone much above 10 degrees Celsius over the past few months.

If you’ve bought a Zus please let me know how its worked out for you and leave a comment below.

I would really appreciate it if you could like and share this post on the social networks so I can get the word out about my blog!

Thanks – Jay

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JBL Charge Review

JBL Charge Review

I’ve had the JBL Charge for about 2 weeks now and so far it’s been a blast! This little Bluetooth wireless speaker is about the size of pop can and can follow you anywhere. I’ve paired it to my iPhone, iMac, MacBook Pro and Moto X without much hassle. I’ll be unboxing the JBL Charge in this post for your convenience.

 

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Sound quality

For a small unit the sound is definitely a lot nicer than I expected. The unit has full rich sound and for a small room this is a solid choice.

Design

I love the design of this thing. It feels solid and fits nicely in your hand. The materials are a combination of plastic and metal for the exterior. The unit also comes with a cool looking carrying case made out of some stretchy material.

Battery Life

Out of the box the unit was already pre-charged and lasted about 8 hours. On a full charge the claim is about 12 hours however it’s hard to gauge exactly when you turn the thing on and off multiple times throughout the week.

Size and Weight

At 20.3 x 19 x 8.4 cm and 1 Kg this device can go anywhere. My plan is to take this camping in the summer.

Difficulties

Occasionally I had issues pairing the device via Bluetooth. I found that holding the power button down on the JBL Charge put it into pairing mode. You could hear a faint beeping noise and the device would become discoverable.

 

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Netgear AC3200 Nighthawk X6 Tri-Band WiFi Router Review

nighthawkMy wireless router gets a lot of usage in my house. The only time someone isn’t connected to it (via a device) is when we’re asleep!

The Netgear AC3200 Nighthawk X6 Tri-Band WiFi Router retails for around $300. But it can do some pretty amazing things that you’d never think your router could actually do. The Netgear Nighthawk looks like something that belongs in Darth Vader’s home office, though. It has six antennae, and it is shiny and black. On the few nights where I’ve ended up sleeping on the couch in the living room where it lives, I’ve had to turn the lights off, because they were a little bright for my liking. There is, however, a toggle button on the back of the router for exactly that purpose.

After unboxing, I plugged ‘er in, and attached my computer and the modem. The modnighthawkbackem then automagically took me through the setup process. I did have a few problems with the setup process, primarily because of browser issues. It didn’t like Chrome for some reason, or Chrome on Mac. Once I switched to Safari, I was able to complete the setup process with no problem.

This baby is fast! Up to 3.2 Gb/sec download speeds, if your internet provider is able to offer that. I did do some side-by-side tests with my old modem, and it was slightly faster than my old one. I think this is more due to my internet service provider’s limited download speeds, however.

One thing I really noticed though, is how it doesn’t slow down, even when you’ve connected multiple devices. We have, on average, 3 devices connected at any given time: my macbook, an iPad, and my iPhone. We also have a Wii that sometimes also uses the system. It works really well–even if we are streaming something on one of the devices.

Netgear Genie App. The modem comes with an app for your computer, and for your phone. You can manage all your settings right from your phone–kinda cool! One of the options you can do with this wireless router is set up a completely separate channel for your media computer. This computer can house all your music, photos and videos, connected to your TV. It already has a guest connection built in, or I could create a separate one for my son, upon which I could enforce parental controls (which are excellent, and work well).

Print wirelessly–even with a wired printer. The Netgear Nighthawk does this cool trick where you can make any printer a wireless printer. I invested in a laser printer 7 years ago. Even though it’s only black and white, I still keep it and it still fills my needs. I have no plans to replace it any time soon–like with one of those fancy new wireless printers. Well, I can teach my old printer to do new tricks simply by plugging it into the USB port in the back of my modem. It’s now a wireless printer! And it will print from any connected device, not just my MacBook. Music, Video

Photo, music and media storage and sharing. I have to confess, I’m a bit of a digital hoarder. I have probably hundreds or thousands of photos that should be deleted to keep hard drive space, but I’m nervous to do so, “in case I need them someday” (hoarder mentality!). The router creates a sort of at-home cloud. All you do is buy a largeish USB flash drive (or you could use a large stand-alone hard drive, as long as it has a USB connection), and plug it into the back of the modem. You can upload and store on this drive, all your photos, music and videos, and again, stream them to any device connected to the modem. Cool, huh?

All-in-all, I really like the extra bells and whistles that the Netgear Nighthawk has. It seriously does things I didn’t really know a modem could do! You can check out all Netgear’s stuff here: netgear.com

About the Author

Rebecca Coleman comes from a background in the arts with both writing and theatre being her two passions. She has worked both on- and back-stage in theatre and for more than 10 years, has been doing freelance publicity in the arts.

She got interested in social media as an alternative way to publicize her client’s work, and has learned about how to market using social media for the last 6 years. It led her to write three books, teach workshops as far away as Australia, and become a professor at a University and an instructor at BCIT.

Rebecca also works with small businesses, arts and non-profit organizations to help them to create social media marketing plans to harness the power of social media to grow their businesses.

Slingbox M1 review

slingbox m1

Let me tell you a story about my experience with the Slingbox M1.

The M1 was delivered a few weeks back and at first I thought, “why would I need this? Why do I need to stream TV when I can stream so many other content sources over the Internet?”

I connected and configured the unit and tried it out for a while. Kinda neat I guess.  I could stream live TV to my laptop and computers throughout my house. I could stream to my smartphone and tablet. Then I forgot about it for a week.

Then came Thanksgiving Day (yes, for all our American readers, the Canadian Thanksgiving was on October 13th) and that was when I really was able to test drive the M1. I wasn’t home that day as I went to my mother-in-laws house for dinner. The kids were planted firmly in front of the TV watching Mickey Mouse Clubhouse and the ladies were in the kitchen preparing the Thanksgiving feast. I was bored.

This is when I pulled out my smartphone and connected to my home TV and started streaming the Dallas Cowboys vs. Seattle Seahawks football game. Okay now I was starting to see the value in the Slingbox.

stream live tv

As I sat back and enjoyed the game I started playing with the interface a little more and realized I could create favorite stations which made it a little easier to navigate. I showed the game to my sister-in-law and she asked, “is that really on your TV at home?” I showed her that I could navigate to the Shaw Cable TV guide and she was floored.

Since that day I’ve used the M1 numerous times including while ironing I’ve streamed the Vancouver Canucks game vs Edmonton Oilers on October 17th through my iMac and was amazed with the HD quality and sound. I’ve also streamed content for my daughter via the PVR and she was amazed that we could do such a thing.

All in all I’m finding more value in my M1 everyday. It was a worthwhile purchase and I’ll be enjoying it for months to come.

Jay

 

 

Vuzix M100 review

Wearable tech is an interesting thing now. With so much hype around it it’s often hard to meet peoples expectations when they get their hands on it. The Vuzix M100 is one such device.

Having read and posted a Tech News piece last year M100I was looking forward to trying and when I did last week I was disappointed.

Upon putting on the M100 I noticed that the headset felt very uncomfortable on my ear. I constantly had to readjust it and make sure that it wasn’t digging into the side of my face. While I don’t expect these devices to be perfect the M100 goes the other way and quickly becomes annoying.

While the M100 is primarily used for commercial and medical applications, I used it strictly operating as a consumer and user of wearable tech. If I had to use it for a job I would quickly discard it in favor of another device or a smartphone or tablet based on what I mention above.

With a WQVGA Color display, the M100 works on your left or right eye, over head or with safety glasses (included). With or without safety glasses, I found the screen on the M100 to be satisfactory. Heads up display or HUD technology still has a way to go but both the Recon JET and Google Glass provide a better viewing experience.

The M100 runs on a standard Android build which is fine with me. You can also use a remote control app that pairs with an Android device. It isn’t compatible with iOS yet but if I had to switch to an Android device to use it I could be ok with that.

Vuzix does sell a developer kit sdk but company’s such as Google do not charge to develop on platform such as Glass. Vuzix’s M100 SDK is 199.99 USD so Glass would be a better choice for a number of reasons price included.

The features and functionality offered by the M100 are solid once you get past the way it feels on your face but if you are wearing it for long periods you may not be able to.  It has 1 GB RAM and 4GB flash capable memory with Micro SD support up to 32 GB.

Battery life with the M100 is 6 hours hands free (display off) but only 2 hours hands free and display and 1 hour hands free plus display and camera. Wearable tech devices don’t typically have long battery lives so the External Battery Pack helps increase run time up to 6.5 times over base M100. It offers Micro USB connectivity as well as Wi-Fi 802.11and Bluetooth

Given the performance of the device the price is also way too high. At 999.99 USD individuals much less company’s should be hesitant to make an investment in the M100.

Orbit from Runtastic review

orbitthumb

My first use of wearable tech has come in the form of the Runtastic Orbit. I received it last month orbitand have worn it to help me track my steps and calories. Fitness trackers are all the rage these days with the Nike Fuel Band, FitBit and Jawbone UP24 competing for your money as well as the Orbit. I’m not sure how long the wearable tech craze will last given that so much of it is fueled by speculation and hype but fitness trackers should have a place for a while.

Retailing for 119.99 in Canada it is now available for buy online at Amazon.com. The Orbit is also available at Canada Computers and Walmart.

I’ve downloaded the Runtastic Me app for iOS but haven’t added the Runtastic GPS app for running, biking & other fitness activities. The the Orbit works with the iPhone 4s/5/5s/5c/6/6 Plus as well as Android Bluetooth Smart Ready Android devices running Android 4.3 and up. It also functions as a standalone device.

The Orbit is a 24 hour activity, fitness & sleep tracker. I set the Orbit to tell me when i have reached 8,000 steps for the day. You can also track calories burned, and sleep duration & cycles. I was hesitant to wear it for sleep as I didn’t want to have any gadgets on my wrist while I was resting. It was handy to use it as a watch as well so that I didn’t have to grab my iPhone to check the time.

The Orbit is a small device about the size of a 9V battery with a magnetic slot on the back that attaches to a USB cable. You then plug the Orbit into the USB port on your computer to charge it. It also includes two wristbands (Runtastic Blue and Basic Black), as well as a clip (Basic Black). It can be a bit of a process to insert the Orbit into the wristband but be patient as it’s worth having on your wrist. It’s also waterproof up to 300 feet.

Tablift review

tabliftfeature

tabliftTablet’s have become such an part of our lives these days with people using them at home and work, it’s only natural that a tablet stand could be of use to you.

We received the Tablift last month and I have used it with our families iPad 4. It’s 59.95 with free shipping. It looks like a large spider with four metal legs to me and those legs adjust easily for whatever kind of viewing you plan to do. The top of the Tablift has 10mm wide slots that allow you to slot in your tablet at three positions.

The Tablift works with the following tablets:
•    Apple iPad (all generations, full-sized and mini)
•    Samsung Galaxy (all models and sizes)
•    Amazon Kindle (all sizes of: Fire HD, Fire HDX, Paperwhite)
•    Asus Google Nexus 7, Vivotab
•    Microsoft Surface 2

One of the major benefits of the Tablift is that you can use your tablet handsfree, wherever you happen to be including in bed or on the couch or even on your kitchen counter while you are cooking.  We liked it’s weight and sturdy construction and the fact that it comes in black.

My Mother in Law who is recovering from hip surgery and has to lay in bed while reading and watching TV loves the Tablift and said that it is the perfect stand to aid her in her recovery. Her iPad 2 fits well into it.

Here is what she had to say about it:

I feel as if it was designed specifically for me . It’s very convenient when I am in bed . The legs are long enough that it fits over me and feels stable. It’s also good when I am sitting in an armchair . Because the legs can be adjusted independently , I can find a working place for it in among pillows and blankets. It’s also weighty enough that it doesn’t fall over. It’s good for Facetiming . In the past , I often had to end up holding the iPad in my hands throughout the call.

I can see it being useful in the kitchen if you were following a recipe on your tablet , the Tablift would keep it out of harms way while you were cooking.

My concerns with the Tablift were the length of the legs themselves and the fact that my iPad would not fit as well in its Belkin case. I hesitate to take my iPad out of any case for fear of dropping and damaging it. While the iPad is securely fastened in the Tablift, once you remove the danger of dropping the tablet is there.

Travelon waterproof case review

Front of insert

During a recent trip to the US I visited an Eddie Bower outlet store and picked up a Travelon clear view waterproof case for my iPhone. I figured I couldn’t go wrong for five bucks and the product declared that it was submersible to 65 feet and that it floats.

Now while I can’t prove that it’s good to 65 feet for the 30 minutes it claims I can attest to the fact that it does indeed float. It is also an IPX8 certified case.

The main issue I had with the case was the design and now I understand why this particular model was being cleared out for $5. There is an awkward opaque design on the back that completely covers the camera. Now my main reason for buying the unit was to take photos.

Inserting the phone upside down and backwards mostly resolved the issue but then the screen was partially covered. Well at least I can take an underwater photo now.

Inserting the phone itself was a bit awkward and required a bit of skill in getting inserted correctly. The pillow inside the case indicates if the seal has been compromised but pushing all the air out of the pillow was a bit of a challenge.

Overall I can’t complain for $5 but definitely wouldn’t recommend paying more considering the design issues. Perhaps newer models will feature a more functional design.

Dell Venue 8 Pro review

Venue 8 ProStepping out of the iOS/Android world again, I’m impressed with all that Dell has to offer. The Venue 8 Pro provides yet another option for people looking for an 8 inch tablet. I’ve used the iPad Mini and Samsung Galaxy Note 8 and have reviewed Lenovo’s Idea Tab as well so this tablet is a welcome change.

It’s hard to say that this tablet is better or worse than an Apple or Samsung product because it’s just different. I’ll admit I haven’t used Windows since XP and there is enough new things to learn with Windows 8 as the Venue 8 Pro’s OS. The 8 inch tablet space is an interesting one too because every major player has one these days with Samsung offering up its Galaxy line in so many forms. Bigger than a smartphone but smaller than full size iPad or a laptop, 8 inch tablet’s can bridge the gap between smartphones and laptops and the Venue 8 Pro does this very well.

Hardware

On the hardware side the Venue 8 Pro offers the following:

  • Intel® Atom™ processor Z3740D with 32GB storage (2MB Cache, up to 1.8GHz Quad-Core)
  • Windows 8.1 (32Bit) English
  • Microsoft® Office Home and Student 2013 Included
  • 8.0 inch IPS Display with HD (WXGA 1280 x 800) resolution with 10-pt capacitive touch
  • 2GB Single Channel DDR3L-RS 1600MHz
  • 32GB eMMC
  • Intel® HD Graphics
  • Dell Wireless 1538 Dual-Band 2×2 802.11n WiFi + Bluetooth® Smart

I love the separate keyboard that ships with the Venue 8 Pro. You can type via the touchscreen but I prefer this little keyboard because it’s small and compact and runs using Bluetooth 4.0.  This will also allow for connection to a compatible mouse, external keyboard or other accessories or sync up some compatible Bluetooth speakers for great sound without the wires.

Dual-band WiFi is also a nice feature of the Venue 8 Pro. It allows you to set up fast, reliable connections to WiFi hotspots around town, on campus or at home. I am not sure if this tablet is cellular network capable like its Samsung and Apple cousins but that is worth investigating.

User Experience

As I mentioned above, Windows 8 is a totally new beast for me. I found myself looking for the Start Menu and the desktop more than anything to get my bearings. From Windows 95 to XP and Server editions of NT and 2000 between, Windows was my go to OS. Switching to Mac wasn’t an easy one at first but going back has been tougher. I tried to get as much use out of this tablet as I could from surfing the web, downloading apps, using Office but I was so lost at some points I could only laugh.

For savvy business professional who still uses Windows and always has you will love this tablet. Compact and easy to carry around and great to take traveling, the Venue 8 Pro will go 9.9 hours before it needs charging. That’s three hours more video watch time on a single charge versus other popular small screen tablets including the  Nexus 77, ARM based 8” Samsung Galaxy Tab 35, Samsung Galaxy Tab Pro 8.