Articles by Joel McLaughlin

ArmPocket Sport 20 Review

Have you ever wanted to take your smartphone with you on a workout, but your workout shorts don’t have pockets and neither does your T-Shirt?  What would you do?  Well you could order a arm band for your prospective device, but one downside to this is you must buy a new one when you buy a device that doesn’t fit the arm band.  That’s where the ArmPocket Sport 20 comes in. The ArmPocket Sport 20 is essentially a universal arm band that is designed to work primarily with touch screen based devices like the iPhone, the T-Mobile G1, The T-Mobile…

Altec Lansing expressionist PLUS Speakers Review

I was looking for a new speaker system to use in my kitchen with my laptop or mp3 player, when I came across the expressionist PLUS system from Altec Lansing. The Altec Lansing expressionist PLUS is a attractive speaker system that not only looks good, but sounds good as well. 

Jaybird Endorphin Rush Earbuds Review

A couple of days ago I reviewed the Jaybird Tiger Eyes earbuds, which include a microphone and are designed primarily for mobile phone users.  But what if you aren’t looking for earbuds to use with a mobile phone?  Enter the Endorphin Rush earbuds from Jaybird. These earbuds have the same titanium drivers that the Tiger Eyes, which promise similar true to life sound.  The Endorphin Rush  sound exactly the same as the Tiger Eyes.  They sounded a little tinny, but were more than adequate for use when working out. The thing that the Jaybird line of products is known for is…

Tom Bihn Tristar Travel Bag Review

It’s not everyday I get a bag like this in the mail.  Tom Bihn makes, in my humble opinion, the best travel bags period.  The new Tristar bag is no exception! I say this as a Tom Bihn owner for quite some time.  I have taken the Tom Bihn Aeronaut with me to DC on my last flight, and I used the Western Flyer and the Aeronaut when my son and I went to camp.  The Aeronaut was kind of large to take on a school trip with my son to camp.  Well, next year I can just use the…

Jaybird Tiger Eyes Earbuds Review

It’s been a while since I reviewed the JayBird JB-200 Bluetooth headphones.  In that time, Jaybird has expanded their line from simply Bluetooth audio, and they have introduced two new sets of earbuds.  Today I am reviewing one of those, the Jaybird Tiger Eyes Earbuds. These are like the Altec Lansing BackBeat Pros that I just reviewed; they are the in-ear style.  They are a little smaller than the BackBeat headphones, and they are not as noticeable as the BackBeat headphones when you wear them.  One other difference from the BackBeat Pro is that these have a microphone and a…

Brickyard by 2XL Headphones Review

You want to look like a DJ?  You don’t like the colors typical DJ style headphones come in?  Well, check out these headphones from 2XL. These are a classic design that has been around for a long time.  When I was little, these were the only kind of headphones available.  

WeatherBug for Android Review

When outside or planning to go outside, checking the current weather conditions is usually the first thing I do.  With WeatherBug for  Android , it’s a simple swipe and a tap to find out what is going on outside. The WeatherBug app is a lot like the desktop counterpart.  It has the current temperature in the notification area and it will optionally use the integrated GPS to change it’s location automatically.  That is a fantastic idea and one I use a lot when traveling through the greater Columbus area.

Pro’s and Cons of Integrated GPS and Cameras

It all started innocently enough when Christopher Gavula e-mailed the team about the Mapquest on iPhone article.   Wayne responded with an email on how much he liked the Palm Pre’s navigation program and wished standalone GPS makers well because from his point of view the Pre’s included turn-by-turn Telenav software/GPS combination all but put the nail in the standalone automotive GPS coffin. And it all spun off from there.  Join us in another behind the scenes look at the Pro’s and Con’s of integrated devices.

Moovida Media Center Review

Last month while searching for some media player software for Linux, I came across a program called Elisa.   Elisa was a full screen media player similar to Apple’s Front Row.  It had an interface that looked a lot like Apple’s Front Row, with a twist.  I installed it on both my Eee PC 701 and initially on my 1000HE and would use it whenever I wanted some music playing in the background. Flash forward to today.  The Elisa project has revamped itself and renamed itself into the media center called Moovida.  It is available for both Linux and WindowsXP/Vista with…

USB Fever Borescope Review

Have you ever dropped something in your PC case, and then could not find it amongst the chips, resistors, capacitors and other various nooks and crannies?  Next time, you can use this nifty USB Fever Borescope to find it.

Blue Eyeball Web Cam Review

Blue has been well known for their microphones.  They are of exceptional quality, they look good, and they are very well built.  Well Blue has taken one of their most portable microphones, the Snowflake, and made it into a webcam called the Eyeball.

Qstarz BT-Q1000X GPS / Data Logger Review

While most people use either a  car style GPS, a handheld style GPS or a phone with integrated GPS, this is a device that’s a little different.  Like the Visiontac VGPS-900, the Qstar BT-Q1000X is a data logger device primarily, but can be used as a navigation device via bluetooth or USB.  A data logger GPS primary function is to log where you have been.  It is not as concerned with presenting data during your trip, but it’s more for creating a travel log of the places you have been.

Coghlan’s Camper’s Kit Review

It’s May, which mean’s it’s off to camp soon for my son and me as we had to Camp Pilgrim Hills with my son’s class for an adventure in Nature’s Classroom.  One thing we always pick up is water bottles, ponchos and a new first aid kit, because we usually have lost or broken the water bottle, torn the poncho and used the first aid kit. Coghlan’s has come up with a unique package that lets me pick up some of the stuff I need in one shot;  I am talking about Coghlan’s Camper’s Kit in a Bottle. The water…

Uniea Omniverse Universal and Omniverse Hard Drive Case Review

Netbooks are all the rage, but protecting a netbook as you carry it isn’t always easy thanks to their small size.  Regular laptop cases are too large for most netbooks, and most sleeves that come with netbooks (if they are even included!) are cheap and provide very little by way of protection. The end result…  it’s difficult to just throw your netbook in a bag. All this makes a sleeve or case that offers real protection an essential purchase when buying a netbook.  Uniea sent me their latest Universal Case for 10.2 inch netbooks; let’s take a look.

Nextar Ribbit Review

After seeing the Nextar Ribbit and showing it to my son, I literally jumped at the chance to look at this fun little MP3 player with him. This MP3 player is SMALL.  So small, that not long after Luke had it, he had misplaced it.  Luckily, it doesn’t cost that much to replace this cute little frog head.

Proporta Beach Buoy Review

The summer travel season is fast coming upon us.  In fact, here in Columbus we have a day in the 80’s predicted already! While it’s still not warm enough to go swimming, when you do finally take the plunge you may want to take this with you.

Blue Icicle XLR-USB Interface Review

Blue has been making microphones for a while now but this is their first adapter.  This adapter takes any microphone with an XLR connector and converts  it to  a USB connector making it possible to record high quality audio through your computer.

Altec Lansing Backbeat Plus Mobile UHS206 Review

After reviewing  the Backbeat 106 headphones, the folks at Altec Lansing sent out a version of the headphones designed for mobile phones. The Backbeat Plus Mobile UHS206  are virtually identical to the Backbeat 106 ear buds in my earlier review.  The  design is a little different, and the cables are  wrapped in the same tangle proof cloth covering. This is a nice extra which keeps the cables from kinking up and getting tangled while floating around in a pocket or in your gear bag.  Other than the extra ring for the mic, the mic itself and the call button, the…