Reviews

The LapWorks Aluminum Desktop Stand

Not long ago I reviewed a simple black plastic swiveling laptop stand which really impressed me because it made using my Toshiba Satellite more ergonomic?as it was kept?cool. My only real complaints against that economical (<$10) solution was that it wobbled a bit, and the front retaining lip blocked the Toshiba’s SD card slot. I no longer have the Toshy, it’s been replaced by my much loved Fuji T4215, but wouldn’t you know it? The Fuji also has an SD slot, as well as jacks for the microphone and earphones located on the front lower edge. I eventually found it…


The BatteryGeek 130Wh External Battery Pack Review

I have had my MacBook Pro for about 6 months now, and for the most part I have been very happy with it. The one issue that has been with it from the beginning is battery life. While it may be quite a powerful laptop, the 2.5hrs battery life (I have seen less more than once) is just plain slack. Due to the design of the MBP an extended battery isn’t really practical either as it would be a rather awkward hump in the middle of the laptop. There is a solution however. It might not be the most elegant…


The Iambic Health and Diet Manager (for Pocket PC) Review

One of the factors that made me drag my feet when deciding whether or not to fully migrate from the Palm OS to Windows Mobile was that the two software titles I considered essential were only available for the Palm OS at the time: one was Beik’s Woman which I use to track “female stuff”, and the other was Calorie King’s Diet Diary. Both programs came with desktop software, so although I would eventually lose the convenience of being able to enter or retrieve data on my PDA, I was still able to use these programs familiar interfaces on my…


The Brando USB Audio Controller Review

When you’ve got a computer without sound support or perhaps it is broken, what do you do? If its a desktop computer, you could pop its lid and install a sound card in one of its slots. But if its a laptop/notebook computer, there are no expansion slots to put in a sound card. There is also the tech factor, sometimes opening something electronic up and messing with its guts is not the thing for everyone. Enter the USB Audio Controller from USB Brando.


Thermaltake iXoft Fanless Notebook Cooler Review

Laptops these days are getting a lot more powerful, and along with that power comes a lot of heat. Some laptops obviously get hotter than others, and my MacBook Pro would be nearing the top of that list. When it?s running hard it can get very hot on the bottom, which is why the term ?notebook? was coined. At full (or even medium) load, my MacBook Pro is definitely not a laptop. Thermaltake, the guys that make computer cases and cooling products, have come to the rescue with a new product that puts your notebook back on your lap, without…


The Tom Bihn Ego Messenger Bag Review

In 2005 I reviewed a king-sized bag from Tom Bihn called the Super Ego. While that bag was extremely well made, versatile, and could carry even the largest laptops, the trade-off was obviously that the bag was huge. Measuring approximately 17″ wide x14.5″ tall x 6.75″ deep, the Super Ego could seem a bit overwhelming for smaller framed people, or anyone that wasn’t toting a desktop replacement sized laptop. For laptop bag aficionados that appreciated the highly personalized style of the Super Ego but that didn’t need such a plus-sized carrier, Tom Bihn has recently introduced The Ego. According to…


The GPSGate Review

Ever wanted to spy or follow someone without their knowledge like they do in TV shows? All you need is a WM Phone with GPS and a data connection! Plant this in their car and you can follow their every move? GPSGate is a small piece of software that you install on your Windows Mobile device, preferably a phone edition for the always-on data capabilities, that multiplexes a single GPS signal to work with several applications as once, can share an internal GPS receiver over Bluetooth, and also throws in some GPS tracking into the mix.


Resco Explorer 2005 for Windows Mobile Review

The built-in File Explorer in Windows Mobile is to put it simply, lame. It only has a very basic feature set, and add to that there is no registry editor included at all. Resco has come up with a replacement application that should fulfill the needs of even power users, and throws in some features outside the realm of a file manager for that extra value. I installed the application using the CAB files downloaded off the website, but there is an installer for Windows users that makes setup a cinch. The registry editor, FTP client and today screen plug-in…


Observing Nature Device: A Review

He rocks in the tree top all a day long Hoppin’ and a-boppin’ and a-singin’ the song All the little birds on J-Bird Street Love to hear the robin goin’ tweet tweet tweet – Rockin’ Robin (Bobby Day) Here is a fun device that will open up a whole new world of nature?s best ? the symphony of birds singing in the morning. Vavolo sent along a Nature Observing Recording & Playback Device.


Need a boost? The Tekkeon myPower Go MP1500 Review

It never fails at the airport… I always observe some frantic person with their cell phone on life support status ? the familiar beep ? beep ? beep of a dying battery. While not as frustrasting as a dead battery in a car, having power to spare is a good thing. Of course there are disposable battery boosters conveniently for sale at a healthy markup (regularly $7.00 for $19.95) at the airport gift shop! Tekkeon has a solution for those in dire straits ? the myPower Go MP1500. Using four AA batteries, the MP1500 provides the emergency power needed for…


The Don’t Bug Me All Natural Insect Repellent Patch Review

What smells like a vitamin supplement, sticks to you like glue, and may just keep you from becoming a human feast this summer? Well, the Don’t Bug Me Insect Repellent Patch – of course! 😉 According to their press release, the Don’t Bug Me Patch is “now available at major retailers nationwide, the effective and waterproof patch protects against bites from pesky, disease-carrying mosquitoes, gnats, ticks, chiggers, sand fleas and no seeums. The patch doesn’t contain DEET so it’s safe for children too.”


Crank It Up: XC-253 Flashlight Review

Here in the states with the change of seasons, there is always the possibility of inclement weather, power outages at home or being lost in the campgrounds with nightfall approaching. The Boy Scouts have a motto: Be Prepared. “Be prepared for what?” someone once asked Robert Baden-Powell, the founder of the World Scout Movement. “Why, for any old thing.” he replied. While I don?t doubt that any Boy Scout can start a fire with two sticks, for guys like me, I need a little technology to give me a head start. Courtesy of Vavolo, here?s a very cool looking Handle…


The WaterField Cargo Mambo Combo Review

It’s been five years since I helped review the WaterField Designs Cozmo bag, and two years since I reviewed the VertiGo. While I eventually grew out of both bags, to this day I still use the Gearpouch and SleeveCase (with flap and D-rings) that I received along with the Cozmo in late 2002. The Gearpouch goes with me every time I travel (I keep it loaded with Gomadic cables and tips, card readers and other assorted small items), and the SleeveCase still holds my aging Fujitsu P2110 – which I am always threatening to sell or give away, but will…


Unboxing the Plantronics Pulsar 260 Stereo Bluetooth: The Review

It didn’t seem that long ago that I visited a local users group regarding Bluetooth, the takeaway phrase was walking around with your own personal wireless network. Technology has surged ahead indeed reminiscent to first riding a bicycle in my youth: “Look Mom, no hands!” to “Look Mom, no wires!” So what is Bluetooth wireless technology? “Bluetooth wireless technology is a short-range communications technology intended to replace the cables connecting portable and/or fixed devices while maintaining high levels of security. The key features of Bluetooth technology are robustness, low power, and low cost.” Plantronics earlier this month announced the U.S. introduction…


The Belkin N1 Wireless Router and ExpressCard Review

About 2 months ago the 802.11n Enabler for the latest Macs finally became available, releasing the hidden 802.11n capabilities. This is great for us Mac owners with Core 2 Duo Macs as we can jump onboard the .11n band wagon with some of the already available .11n draft equipment. When Belkin offered their new N1 Wireless Router and ExpressCard for review I was quite excited, as 54Mbit 802.11g is really starting to show its age with the high resolution and high bandwidth video streaming and file transfers. But does it live up to its claims? Read on to find out.


I got the gear! and myPowerALL: Review

Here at GearDiary, Judie and the team simply love using and conversing with you as our participants, about the technology that we are blessed to come in contact with. We enjoy listening to our music to go, GPS that help us navigate over the roads and through the woods when we’re geo-caching, cameras and camcorders that capture our “WOW” moments that we can share on Flickr and You Tube, cell phones and smart phones that pull down our emails and allow us to tap into WiFi hotspots, laptops that are light and portable and don’t forget the DVD players and…


Cold Hands No More: Warmmi USB Heating Gloves Review

Spring is here and if you’re lucky to have a cubicle space that has a window view with authentic sunlight streaming in, it may still be frigid inside with the air conditioner running full blast. On such a nice day! Then again, I once worked at a start-up tech company where there was no heat during my winter of discontent. There were many nights of wearing my layered clothing under a down jacket. Although the old computer that was assigned to me was a wood-burning model, it emitted no heat to warm my freezing fingers. And we all know productivity…


The I-mu Magic Audio Frequency Singer Review

It’s been almost five years since I reviewed the Soundbug, a suction cup-based “speaker” which would utilize whatever surface it was attached to in order to produce sound while hooked to an audio source. Today I am going to look at the i-mu Magic Audio Frequency Singer, a device that similarly uses whatever surface it is resting upon to produce sound. The suction cup is gone as is the slightly cheap and cheesy silver plastic body, but the parallels are still there. This is not a traditional speaker, the sound produced will depend upon the surface upon which the i-mu…


The Proporta Gadget Bag Review

If you carry anything more than a pocket camera, PDA and mobile phone, then you might have decided that adding one more thing to your bat-belt will be all it takes to drag your pants down to your ankles. Well, there’s no need to scare little children while toting your gear, Proporta has come to the rescue with their new Gadget Bag. Smaller than a laptop bag, but larger than an accessory pouch, the Gadget Bag offers options for days when your gear load is heavier than usual, but you don’t want to be weighed down by a full size…


The Power Docking Station Review – De-Clutter Your Desktop

We all love our gear – MP3 players, cell phones, portable gaming consoles, PDA’s, cameras, laptops, which all demand the use of electricity accompanied by the associated wires, cords and chargers that supply the lifeline needed to power our gear. When I go to a concert and see miles of cable strung across the stage, it’s a wonder musicians don’t trip over them. Unfortunately, seeing a miniature version of cluttered wires strung out across my work surfaces and hanging over the backside of my desk like some ugly artsy waterfall of wires mentally trips me out. Digital Innovations has come…


The Kohjinsha SA1-1 Ultra Portable Laptop Review

Back in 1991, when the HP 95LX was my daily driver, I used to anticipate the day when handhelds would have color displays and be even closer to the laptop computers which they seemed to emulate. When color displays became available, I looked forward to the time when these handhelds would have more memory, better battery life, better connectivity, and a faster processor. As each item on my wish list was ticked off, I finally decided that what I might have wanted all along was a more robust operating system; a true mini PC. Now it’s 2007, and UMPCs are…