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Accessories

mJoose Case Boosts Smartphone Signal Strength

Sunday, February 21st, 2016

mJoose LogoThe mJoose is a 3-in-1 phone case for the Apple iPhone 6 series and Samsung Galaxy S6 that protects the phone, extends the battery life and boosts the phone signal. Is this too good to be true? Don Baine assesses the mJoose with John Casalaspi, VP Sales.

Originally an Indiegogo campaign that was 546% funded, the mJoose is a sled-type case in matt black or bone white that surrounds and protects the phone. Embedded within the case is a 3,000 mAh rechargeable battery and an active signal booster. Unlike passive boosters, the mJoose has built-in circuitry to receive the phone signal, amplify the signal and pass it on the the smartphone. The active boost will add about two bars to the signal strength and could make the difference between making a call and not. It works across all carrier frequencies from 2G to 4G for all carriers, whether GSM or CDMA.

The mJoose will be available in the next month or so for the iPhone 6 series – it’s in the last stages of Apple accreditation. The version for the Galaxy S6 and Edge phones will arrive a little later. Pricing will be around US$149.99 retail depending on model.

Don Baine is the Gadget Professor and gives lectures at TheGadgetProfessor.com

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Technics Presents Modern Audiophile Headphones at CES

Thursday, February 18th, 2016

Technics logoTechnics is one of the most celebrated brands in prosumer audio electronics. The brand has been dormant for some time but now, Panasonic, the parent company of Technics, is reviving the Technics line. There was much talk at this year’s CES about new Technics products like turntables and headphones.

Greg Lee, field manager for Technics/Panasonic visited with Daniel and Todd. He brought along a set of Technics new 700 series audiophile headphones. These headphones feature multiple drivers with a high crossover point that reproduce accurate, high-resolution audio. The main headphone driver is off-axis from the ear which changes how listeners not only hear the music, but how they perceive the sound. The 700 series headphones come in a modern wrought aluminum design that minimizes resonance, with two sliders to adjust the phones to a comfortable fit. These headphones are expected to retail for around $1200 when they come to market.

Daniel J. Lewis dares you to get started in podcasting with The Audacity to Podcast.

Todd Cochrane is the host of the twice weekly Geek News Central Podcast which can be found at GeekNewsCentral.com

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Ventev Helps You Stay Charged

Sunday, January 31st, 2016

Ventev logoWe all carry around, and rely on, our mobile devices. Will you have enough power to do what you need to do while you are out and about? Ventev has a line of mobile accessories that can ensure you won’t run out of juice.

Marlo and Todd spoke with Scott Franklin, Head of Marketing for Ventev Mobile at CES 2016. Ventev Mobile makes a line of mobile accessories, including back up batteries, wall chargers, car chargers, and a variety of different cables.

The powercell 6000c battery charger with lightning cable is a 6000mAh portable battery with built-in Apple Lightning cable and 1A USB. It has aluminum housing. It features an on/off button, LED battery indicator light, and provides 25 additional hours of talk time. The powercell 600c is priced at $69.99 and is available now.

Todd Aune is bridging the technology gap with The Elder Divide.

Marlo Anderson is rounding up the latest technology news at The Tech Ranch.

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CES 2016 Wrap Up Show & TPN Picks

Tuesday, January 12th, 2016

The TPN Team present their 2016 TPN Picks to 10 companies that we felt had the best new products at CES 2016. Off the 1000’s of companies booths we walked by these 10 where tops by our team.

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CES 2016 Primer

Monday, December 28th, 2015

Todd Cochrane of Geek News Central gets our CES channels fired up with a primer of what is to come in the coverage department from the 20 team members of the Tech Podcast Network who start preparing to head to Vegas in a couple of days.

Kinivo Music and Video Gadgets at CES

Monday, March 2nd, 2015

Kinivo LogoKinivo have a range of consumer-oriented music products from headsets to speakers, including several with Bluetooth. Don chat’s with Henry Wong, Kinivo’s Director of Product Management to find out more.

All of Kinivo’s products are competitively priced – for example the ZX100 Mini Portable Speaker with rechargeable battery costs less than $20. The BTH360S Bluetooth Stereo Headphones which supports wireless music streaming and hands-free calling costs $69.99 so these are good value products. There’s also an interesting HDMI switcher, the HS420 which has four inputs and two outputs, at just under $65. Could be very handy for advanced gaming or home cinema setups.

Interview by Don Baine, the Gadget Professor for the TechPodcast Network.

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On3 PowerCliq Smart Battery Case

Monday, March 2nd, 2015

PowerCliq LogoCombo battery cases for the Apple iPhone are commonplace from no-name clones to well-known manufacturers whose brand is almost synonymous with the product. On the other hand, combined case, battery and Bluetooth headset packs with smart battery management are really quite rare. In fact, On3‘s PowerCliq is the only one I know of, so watch Don get a hands-on demo from Brad Yasar of On3.

The PowerCliq is a 2700 mAh battery case for the iPhone which has two additional features. The first is a Bluetooth 4.0 headset that slides into the back of the case for both storage and charging. The second is that the charging features of the external battery can be controlled by app on the iPhone. When plugged in, most battery packs simply charge until the smartphone is fully charged and then keep it topped up; there are some schools of thought that suggest this can be detrimental to the long-term performance of the battery.

On the PowerCliq, the app can be used to set a minimum battery level such that the recharging doesn’t kick in until the iPhone’s battery falls to that level and once fully charged, turns off. This larger discharge / charge cycle is supposed to improve the life of the battery.

The PowerCliq is fundraising on Kickstarter with early birds getting in at $88.  Update: since CES, the Kickstarter campaign has been cancelled. There’s a note on Instagram saying that this is to allow for new developments and the campaign will restart soon.

Interview by Don Baine, the Gadget Professor for the TechPodcast Network.

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Marshall Electronics Targets Pro Portable Audio

Sunday, February 22nd, 2015

Marshall Electronics LogoSmartphones, and in particular the iPhone, are beginning to replace the video camera for on-the-spot interviews especially when it’s a one person gig. While the video side of the recording is well covered by the iPhone, the audio isn’t, mainly because the camera has to be six feet away from the subject rather than the the six inches preferred by a microphone. Marshall Electronics have been thinking about this problem and Don gets a world exclusive on their newest product from Perry Golstein.

Marshall have been working on a set of portable accessories for the iPhone which connects pro gear for high quality audio recordings. Brand new is a battery-powered pocket-mixer with four audio inputs, headphone monitor and an analogue output. In addition, the mixer has a digital out over USB: connect the mixer to the iPhone via Apple’s camera connector and the audio can be recorded digitally. The mixer will be available later in the year with a target price of $249. Very neat.

Interview by Don Baine, the Gadget Professor.

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OmniMount Takes A Lifestyle View at CES

Sunday, February 22nd, 2015

OmniMount LogoCES regulars OmniMount decided to approach the show a little differently this year, setting out their products in lifestyle vignettes, with visitors to seeing the products in real and relevant scenarios. Don chats with Bill Ennis, veteran of 31 shows, to hear about a few of OmniMounts latest products.

The first of OmniMount’s new products is the WorkSpace Wall Organiser, a stylish wall-mounted height-adjustable fold-away desk which conveniently creates a mini-office when folded down and hidden away when not needed. $399.95.

Also new and entered for a CES award is an in-wall TV mount that holds up to an 80″ screen almost flush with the wall surface. With the flush mount, the slim bezels of the stylish TVs are emphasised, enhancing the picture frame qualities of the TV. Snappily titled OE120IW, it’s $349.95.

Interview by Don Baine, the Gadget Professor.

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MEElectronics Brings Some Unique Capabilities to Bluetooth

Friday, February 20th, 2015

MeelectronicsMEElectronics may not be a brand you’ve heard of, but if you are a fan of Bluetooth, you might want to add them to your list of brands to watch. At CES this year, they showed off a collection of new devices, all with price points that make them incredibly attractive.

First is an over-the-head headphone, called the Air-Fi Touch. Other than the single power/command button, this Bluetooth headset is controlled entirely with touch gestures on one of the ears. It can run over a day on a single charge while still being incredibly light weight. They are available now for $99.99.

Next is the Bluetooth upgrade to the company’s Sport M6 earbuds, dubbed the X7. The headphones are sweatproof and also fit snugly in the ear, allowing for continuous sports use. They also have controls for volume and command on the cord, so you can keep your phone safe while working out. They will be available soon for $99.99.

In addition to headphones, the company also showed off a Bluetooth transmitter, which allows you to add Bluetooth capability to systems that do not have it. The thing that is really nice is that it can pair up to 2 separate headphones at once. It also has line in or fiber optic in, allows you to keep a digital signal from end-to-end. The device is expected to release end of second quarter.

Interview by Scott Ertz of F5 Live: Refreshing Technology for the Tech Podcast Network.

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