Reviews Stories Yesterday

This is Ground has long been known for its exceptional handmade leather accessories, covering just about every product category from iPad to Nintendo Switch. We’re big fans of its Mod carrying case which is now on the third-generation.

Based out of Los Angeles, many of This is Ground’s accessories are made here in the United States from top-grade materials. That includes the Tech Dopp Kit 2, a unique 21st century take on an old-school travel necessity. Head below for a few quick thoughts, a gallery and more.

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Reviews Stories July 24

Back in March, Philips unveiled its latest 40-inch 4K display with a curved design and a bevy of inputs. Well, except for USB-C. Since then I’ve been tinkering with it as a second monitor for my 27-inch 5K iMac and 13-inch MacBook Pro.

I just had to try out this massive display that is bigger than the first flatscreen TV I ever owned by about 25%. My experience with Philips’ 40-inch display has left me with more than a few opinions on the viability of this monster. Head below for more.

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Reviews Stories July 14

Summer is in full swing and with it, some awesome opportunities for photography. For those of us looking to get that perfect shot, it usually requires taking a camera or two, our favorite assortment of lenses, some spare batteries, and maybe even a drone.

That’s not exactly an easy group of things to carry on a hike, not without the right backpack, that is. Recently I’ve been testing out Incase’s new DSLR Pro Pack and Capture Sling Pack, two bags that are ideal companions to your camera and even your drone.

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Reviews Stories July 13

Last week we unboxed Acer’s Predator 21 X, a rare super-laptop with a $9,000 price tag to match. While the unboxing discussed some of the particulars related to the initial boarding process, we wanted to take another opportunity to go a bit more in-depth with this unique offering. In the following hands-on video, we discuss 10 features that make the Predator 21 X the outrageously-special beast that it is. expand full story

Reviews Stories July 12

When it comes to your Apple Watch, the world of accessories seems endless. Bands, cases and docks frequently appear on 9to5Toys as our reader’s favorite deals and today we’re highlighting a new one. iPM has a range of Apple Watch add-ons including its sleek Charging Dock. Alongside its metal design and integrated MFi charging puck is a pair of USB charging ports. Head below for a quick overview and an exclusive deal for 9to5Toys readers.

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For the last few weeks I’ve been using the Flip 4 Bluetooth Speaker by JBL, which features a waterproof design, great sound quality, and solid battery life.

The Flip 4 sits in JBL’s lineup of portable Bluetooth speakers as larger than the Clip 2 and smaller than the Charge 3. Keep reading after the jump for our full review of this $99 full-featured speaker.

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Reviews Stories July 7

We rely on our smartphones and other mobile devices too much these days to have accessories that only get us an extra few hours of battery. While you may already have an external battery pack lying around, iClever’s new BoostCell Eco Power Pack sports a 15,000mAh battery to keep all your gadgets charged. 

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If you’re in search of a quick way to read the contents of a 2.5-inch or 3.5-inch SATA drive, then StarTech has a desktop dock offering that may meet your needs. The unit, a top-loading dual-bay desktop dock that connects to your computer via USB 3.1 Gen 2, affords fast access to the contents of up to two SATA drives in a convenient package. expand full story

Last fall, Nomad unveiled its Silicone Strap for Apple Watch and we called it “the Sport Band that should’ve come from Cupertino.” Fast forward to this week, and they are back again with a new silicone Sport Strap that blends the same soft materials with bright colors. We jumped at the chance to go hands-on following our experience last go-around. Head below for a quick look at the new $50 Sport Strap for Apple Watch from Nomad.

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Reviews Stories June 30

There are some strange unique accessories out there for Amazon’s Echo Dot. From owl, penguin and rubix cube stands to hanging outlet mounts and decal skins, there are a lot of loud choices.

But what if you’re looking for a more refined and subtle option that will complement your home? Enter Kaizen Woodworks, a company making affordable handmade Echo Dot stands that also offers custom engraving. Follow along after the break for a hands-on look.

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As we covered back in March, a new product called the Hideez Key was looking to change how passwords and personal information were stored. After spending some time putting it to the test, we’ll see how the Hideez Key holds up when faced with the rigors of every day life.

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Reviews Stories June 29

Huawei has proven it is a very capable company when it comes to smartphones, but few of the company’s other products have ever taken off. Its tablets have never been super popular, and its first Windows device, the Huawei Matebook, wasn’t exactly impressive.

I can honestly say that when it came to a Windows machine, Huawei was the last place I expected to find something I could enjoy using day to day. That is, until Huawei announced its second generation of Windows devices. Over the past month I’ve been using the “flagship” of that collection, the Huawei Matebook X, and it’s been one of the best Windows experiences I’ve ever had…

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Acer sent us one of its limited edition Predator 21 X laptops, which afforded us the opportunity to go hands-on with it via an unboxing. The term “laptop” should be used loosely in this case, as the unit weighs over 19 pounds, features a 21-inch curved display, dual GTX 1080 GPUs in SLI, and 64GB of RAM. Have a look at our hands-on unboxing inside for a look at what to expect from this $9,000 beast. expand full story

Reviews Stories June 23

If you’re a video editor working with large files or someone who likes rip and stream 4K content, then QNAP’s TVS-882ST3 may appeal to you. This is a NAS machine that largely focuses on speed, with I/O options like Thunderbolt 3 and 10Gb Ethernet in tow. Perhaps more interesting, this is a NAS that only features 2.5-inch bays, which work with traditional spinning hard drives, but are obviously geared towards faster solid state storage.

With eight bays, the TVS-882ST3 is capable of hosting a large amount of storage for a variety of different workflows. It can be used as a traditional NAS machine, a DAS (Direct Attached Storage), or a combination of both. Check out our brief hands-on video inside for a closer look at the TVS-882ST3.

Update: This post has been updated with additional details regarding Thunderbolt connectivity.

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Reviews Stories June 21

As we covered last week, Amazon has expanded its line of Alexa-enabled devices with a new barcode scanning wand that is supposed to make it easier to order your favorite foods and more from the company. Deemed the Dash Wand with Alexa, Amazon has now lowered the barrier of entry to trying out its voice assistant.

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Reviews Stories June 16

Continuing our coverage of LEGO’s line of Collector Series sets, today we’ll be building the UCS Slave 1. Despite his brief appearances in the original Star Wars films, Boba Fett is still a fan favorite amongst the cast of other characters. Which means fans of the armor-clad bounty hunter will be pleased to hear that LEGO gave his ship the attention it deserves. Head below to see how the bricks stack up….

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Earlier this month, Mophie unveiled its new wireless charging case and accessories line for iPhone 7/Plus and Samsung Galaxy S8/Plus. At the heart of the new system is the charge force case which allows your iPhone/Android device to connect with a series of add-on accessories for wireless charging and more. This is the first time the company has removed the battery from the actual case to provide fully wireless charging via a simple magnet system. Head below for some quick hands-on impressions of the iPhone version of the charge force case and the charge force powerstation mini… expand full story

Reviews Stories June 15

Spending the right amount of money on a decent speaker isn’t always the easiest thing to do. If you know exactly what you are looking for in a speaker, that definitely helps. For example, some people prefer bass like in Archeer’s A320, but others would rather their music be more balanced. Otherwise, you may want to consider looking into which specs are suitable to your needs before you go ahead and make your purchase.

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Reviews Stories June 13

A few months back V-Moda rolled out its new Remix Bluetooth Speaker littered with intriguing features in hopes that it would stand out from the competition. Aside from the 3D-printed designs that V-Moda has been hawking lately, there is also a built-in headphone amp and a few other goodies here.

I’ve been playing around with the Remix for the last while as the weather has gotten warmer. It has been a trustworthy companion by the water or while gardening outside. And while the features list is nice, I’m a big fan of its design…despite the hefty price tag.

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Reviews Stories June 8

Dell’s XPS lineup has always appealed to me from a pure power perspective. The company continues to stuff its laptop line with power-user features like Thunderbolt 3, 4K displays, and the like.

Prior to the 2016 MacBook Pro refresh, I was considering the purchase of a 15-inch XPS machine for my video needs. That would mean switching over to DaVinci Resolve or Premiere Pro, and as a die-hard Final Cut Pro X fan, that was something I was honestly dreading.

Thankfully, Apple has reversed its course and is now strongly considering the needs of its professional users again. It’s almost like its done a 180-degree turnaround with products like an 18-core iMac Pro on the horizon.

Although I’m no longer outright forced to consider switching to a Windows machine thanks to Apple’s change of gears, that doesn’t mean that I don’t appreciate what companies like Dell are doing. The 2017 XPS 15 (9560) is a beast of a machine with a built-in 4K display that’s perfect for editing UHD video. Have a look at my brief hands-on walkthrough as I discuss 10 things that I appreciate about the XPS 15. expand full story

Reviews Stories June 7

I’ve used a fair share of Lightning cables over the past few years, from Apple’s official Lightning cable, to some lower cost options. So when I saw a Syncwire’s new UNBREAKcable, a new accessory which very evidently proclaims its own indestructibility, I was very intrigued to say the least. After spending a month putting the cables to test, I’ve finally reached my verdict of if they truly are unbreakable.

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Reviews Stories June 2

Less than a month ago, Logitech unveiled its latest addition to the company’s computer peripherals lineup, the K840 Mechanical Keyboard. Fast forward a few weeks and the keyboard is now available for purchase, meaning we got our hands on one for an in-depth review.

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Reviews Stories June 1

One of the first things that any new Panasonic GH5 owner should invest in is a set of extra batteries. The GH-series of cameras have always had good battery life with the included stock battery, but as we noted in our hands-on overview of the camera, the GH5 is a tad more power-hungry than its predecessors.

In my experience, some of the third-party battery options that I’ve tried haven’t been nearly as good as official stock batteries, but Newmowa’s battery doesn’t fit this mold. I find that it actually performs just as well as the official stock Panasonic battery included with my Lumix GH5. expand full story

For the last few weeks I’ve been testing out the VAUX Speaker by Ninety7, which features a place to dock the Echo Dot that provides portable power and an audio upgrade in one package.

Whether you already have a Dot you’re looking to enhance or are debating between the various Echo speakers, keep reading after the break for our full review of this affordable accessory.

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Logitech has today announced the latest generation of its popular MX Master mice alongside an intriguing software feature called Flow. The MX Master and Anywhere 2S introduce a handful of hardware upgrades in a familiar package.

I was a huge fan of the previous generation models, so I was anxious to go hands-on with the latest rendition. Over the last few weeks, I’ve been able to spend some time using both new models and the Flow feature as a part of my daily routine. Full details on both devices as well as my thoughts on each can be found below.

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