Mini-Review: Plantronics Backbeat Go 2 Bluetooth Headset

plantronics-bbtgo2After my adventure with the Nexus 4 and an LG Bluetooth headset last fall I had pretty much given up on wireless headsets for listing to music while out and about. I resorted to using my trusty Etymotic Research HF5’s with a Bluetooth audio transmitter. That combination overcame the fact of the failed headset jack on my Nexus 4. However, I had unwittingly left a BT headset on my Amazon wish list, which resulted in a Plantronics BackBeat Go 2 BT Wireless Headset under the Christmas tree.

In truth, trying yet another wireless headset has me once again wishing that I had a dummy head. No, no…not the head of a dummy…let’s not get snarky, ok? I mean a dummy head with reference microphones, like the Neumann KU 100, for properly measuring headset frequency response. Such tools are beyond the scope of even an advanced hobbyist.

Over the past few weeks I’ve made use of the Backbeat Go 2 while walking the dogs and working around the yard. I’ve listened to various podcasts (Marketplace & Escape Pod are favorites) as well as music via Amazon Prime. In general, I find the Plantronics Backbeat Go 2  completely satisfactory for listening to music.  To my ears they’re much better than the LG HBS series.

Continue reading “Mini-Review: Plantronics Backbeat Go 2 Bluetooth Headset”

Screen Protection For the OnePlus One

PThink Screen ProtectorEven if the OnePlus One is not entirely to my taste, I’ll be keeping for a  while. On that basis I thought it wise to apply a screen protector. One of the considerations when using a less popular handheld is the limited range of accessories available. I settled upon a PThink® 0.3mm Tempered Glass Screen Protector from Amazon Prime for $9.90.

I just applied the item this morning. I must admit that it was the easiest time that I’ve ever experienced with a screen protector. Normally there a lot of fussing about to get hands, phone and table super clean. Then more fussing about to get the screen protector correctly oriented. And finally mas messing around squeezing out the inevitable bubbles under the film.

In this case there was very little such trouble. The tempered glass film is thin, rigid and very hard. Once positioned over the phone I simply pressed down on the center with one finger. The glass then settled down onto the screen, with zero bubbles!

In fact, except for at the very edges, it was perfectly in contact with the screen. Finishing up with a quick wipe across the surface it was perfectly installed.

This Youtube clip shows someone from Talk Android News installing the screen protector on his OnePlus One. He had more difficulty that I, largely because he applied it from one end to the other. I started in the center working toward the edges.

So far I think that this PThink tempered glass screen protector is pretty slick. Definitely Recommended.

Initial Thoughts on the OnePlus One Android Phone

one-plus-oneOn occasion I can be impulsive. This combined with the fact that my two-year Nexus 4 has been troublesome of late, left me open to suggestion. When Dave Michels offered an invitation to order a OnePlus One I jumped at the opportunity.

I ordered the OnePlus One largely without investigated it’s details. That’s unusual for me, even in an impulsive moment. The Nexus 4 has been behaving like a two-year-old…pitching fits, and generally not doing what it should. There have been numerous times when it would spontaneously reboot. Other times a call would come it, but it would not ring. If I was lucky I’d see the screen light up. Then yet other times I’d answer a call and there’d be no audio at all. That situation would persist until it was rebooted.

The One+ One seems like a suitable replacement. It would run on T-Mobile’s HSPA+ and LTE networks. It wasn’t as large a Nexus 6. And at $349 for the 64 GB version stipulated in the invitation, it was priced right.

Continue reading “Initial Thoughts on the OnePlus One Android Phone”

ClearOne Launches UNITE PTZ Camera with USB 3.0 & DVI Connectivity

ClearOne-UNITE-100-PTZ-Camera-300pxA year ago I was looking around for signs of webcams that leveraged the faster USB 3.0 connection to a host computer. They seemed to be strange and rare items at the time. We had Vaddio appear on VUC472 to present their Huddlestation product. They hinted at a coming wave of USB 3.0 cameras, expecting to see them in the summer of 2014.

It wasn’t until Q4 that I found a USB 3.0 capable webcam-ish thing trumpeted as available. In a press release issued December 9, 2014 ClearOne announced that its new Unite 100 PTZ camera was shipping.

I say webcam-ish as the UNITE 100 isn’t directly comparable to a common webcam, like my tiny-but-trusty Logitech C920. With a 12x optical zoom lens and PTZ mount, it’s something more akin to the CC3000e. In fact, it’s probably better.

Continue reading “ClearOne Launches UNITE PTZ Camera with USB 3.0 & DVI Connectivity”