Fenix HM50R Multipurpose LED Headlamp Review

The Fenix HM50R Multipurpose LED Headlamp lives up to the reputation of the flashlights that Fenix produces. This is by far the brightest headlamp I have ever used with 4 different brightness settings. With outputs ranging from 4 to 500 lumens. This rechargeable headlamp can use two different types of batteries with the Li-ion being preferred.

When I was in the Navy and working on airplanes it seemed I was going through a headlamp every six months for a variety of reasons corrosion, switches not working the list is endless. But the build quality of the Fenix HM50R Multipurpose LED Headlamp is really going to blow you away from its stainless steel body, waterproof recharging port, and the waterproof battery enclosure ensures that this will be the last headlamp you ever buy.  My brother in law got his hands on it last week and he was like where did you get this. Well as I told him you can pick one up from Fenix-Store.com today for $59.95

USB-C Wireless Power Bank Review

The Eggtronix USB-C Wireless Power Bank Power Bar is a very innovative power brick. That allows you wirelessly charge your iPhone your Apple Watch and your AirPods at the same time. But that is not all, you can charge all your Apple devices to include your MacBook Air or MacBook Pro.   Delivering unparalleled power 7.5 watts to your iPhone, 5 watts to your Apple Watch, and 30W USB-C to your Macbook or any device that has a USB-C device.

The image above paints a powerful charging solution with a 10,000 maH battery that will deliver multiple charges to your mobile phone or Apple watch.  I have been using this wireless power bar here in my office in the studio area where it is not convenient to have charging cables.

Let’s face it perfect for travel and of course act as a backup power supply for your MacBook or any other USB-C devices you may need to charge. Priced at $149.99 never before has a power bank delivered more options in a single package.

Kanex – Premium Mouse Pad with Wireless Charging Review

The Kanex Mouse Pad with Wireless Charging is an innovative way to have a premium mouse pad with wireless charging built-in. This is really a product that describes itself if you want a clean desk this is an additional step. On my desk I have charge cables stretched around. But with the Mouse Pad having the wireless charge built-in you can keep your mobile phone close at hand while at the same time being able to wirelessly charge the phone.

Available in 4 colors and stylish enough to be placed anyplace on your desk. Priced at $49.95. Compatible with: iPhone models iPhone 11 Pro Max, iPhone 11, iPhone XS Max, iPhone XR, iPhoneX, iPhone 8 Plus, iPhone 8. AirPods Models, AirPods Pro, AirPods with Wireless Charging Case (2nd generation), Wireless Charging Case (2nd generation), Wireless Charging Case for AirPods.

VanTop Mirror Mounted Dash Camera Review

The VanTop Mirror Mounted Dash Camera Discovery H609 is by far the most advanced dash camera I have ever reviewed. They have simply knocked the ball out of the ballpark and it’s only $59.99. When they sent the review unit over I did not even look at the price. After testing the unit and playing with it for a few days I became concerned that the unit would be outside the price range for most folks. When I went and looked up the price I was shocked.

The only downside is some of you will not want to place this over the top of your current rearview mirror.  But if you do your mirror will now be able to act as a reverse camera, touch screen playback with very simple installation. While you will need to plan out the routing of rear camera wiring they provide a tool to help you route your wires so the install is clean.

Dashcams are really divided into a couple of categories of vision quality day and night clarity and any features such as G-Shock. The VanTop Mirror Mounted Dash Camera really exceeds in all categories.  Here is a quick list of specifications.

The install kit is complete with everything that you will need to install the forward and rearview camera. To get the rearview camera to operate this is a little more complicated and you will want someone that is handy with wiring to install that function but the instruction provided by VanTop provides all the information you will need. Priced at $59.99 if you only use the front camera it’s still an amazing value.

Babyface Pro FS Review

The Babyface Pro FS is one of the most powerful audio recording tools that I have seen in a long time. The Babyface Pro FS is a professional 24-Channel, USB bus-powered audio interface with pristine sound quality that can be used in the studio or throw it in a backpack and head out to do a remote interview. Podcasters should take note that this device does everything and more that you will need with the ability to bring in a guest on any online platform that you use like Skype or Zoom while controlling all levels of all parties and multi-track recording with the simple to use control interface.

While you have the option in using the included software which I recommend to set up and save your configuration you are able to configure and control nearly all inputs through the device itself. It will interface directly with your computer PC or Mac through the included USB cable and or you can connect it directly to your iPad and control it TotalMix FX for iPad™ then record directly on your iPad although using it with your iPad you will need an external power supply for the interface. External power is not needed when you are connected to your laptop.

The interface setup software is provided is called RME TotalMix FX is at first was a little intimidating but once you take a few minutes with the software to learn inputs, output the power to control what goes where is pretty awesome. The team at RME has some great beginner to advanced videos on YouTube that really show the power of this device. While a lot of their focus on this device is for musicians. The form factor and the simple fact that you can route in a Skype or Zoom call and record separate tracks on your favorite recording software is what I really love. Portability here is key and it will go with you without having to check luggage.

I was able to record multi-tracks with Adobe Audition and Himalaya very easily with two popular recording packages being used by podcasters today. With a skype call in progress all the while being able to ride the audio levels for two people on the mic in the studio.

A great general overview of the BabyFace Pro FS is below and as I said the team at RME has created a whole series of training videos. I also have a pre-set I can share with anyone that picks up one of these units to get you started fast with 2 hosts and an external guest coming in on Zoom or Skype.  While priced at $899 for me the simple fact that I do not need a pelican case to carry it around is awesome. They do provide a hard-case for the unit but again mobility is the key here.

Apple Tracking Looters #1452

Apple is reportedly tracking looters that broke into a Philadelphia Apple store and stole phones and other merchandise. Hopefully cooler heads will prevail and law and order can resume. SpaceX is back in the news again with another successful launch. Read about it below. See you next week with a full production schedule.

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Continue reading Apple Tracking Looters #1452

Google Faces $5 Billion Lawsuit for Invading Privacy of Users

Google users might be surprised to learn that “private” mode doesn’t actually mean that Google won’t track your internet use. Reuters reported that there is a proposed class action lawsuit against Alphabet Inc. that is seeking at least $5 billion. The lawsuit alleges that Google has been illegally invading the privacy of millions by tracking their internet use through browsers set in “private” mode.

The case is Brown et al v Google LLC et al, which was filed in the U.S. District Court, Northern District of California. I tried to find more information about this lawsuit, but could not find anything. Typically, a controversial lawsuit, that has the potential to affect many people, is embedded somewhere online. This one does not appear to be.

Google calls their private mode “incognito mode”. It would be reasonable to presume that a private mode would enable users to find information that they would not be comfortable having Google know about. For example, people might choose to look up “intimate and potentially embarrassing things” (as the lawsuit states) in Incognito mode, believing that Google would not track it.

According to the complaint filed in the federal court in San Jose, California, Google gathers data through Google Analytics, Google Ad Manager, and other applications and website plug-ins, including smartphone apps, regardless of whether users click on Google-supported ads.

Google spokesman Jose Castaneda told Reuters: “As we clearly state each time you open a new incognito tab, websites might be able to collect information about your browsing activity”. As you may have guessed, Google intends to defend itself vigorously against the claims in the lawsuit.

If this situation troubles you, there are other options. Some people prefer to use more ethical search engines such as Duck Duck Go, or Ecosia (which plants a tree for every search). Mozilla’s Firefox has the capability of blocking certain types of trackers. Keep in mind, though, that nothing on the internet is 100% private.

The lawsuit seeks at least $5,000 of damages per user for violations of federal wiretapping and California privacy laws. It will be very interesting to see if this case gets anywhere. Whenever a gigantic company is the defendant in a lawsuit, I have concerns that the case will disappear before a court can hear it.