Backup Plus Desktop Drive for Macintosh
Company: 
Seagate
Price: $110 to $190, based on 2TB, 3TB, or 4TB online purchase

Seagate Backup Plus Black Mac

Seagate’s semi-modular external drives are versatile gems of design and engineering. With only a few companies now manufacturing good-quality consumer backup drives, the latest lineup of Backup Plus Desktop Drive for Macintosh models offers reliability, excellent value for money, and a secret hidden feature in the removable bottom power and interface port base unit.

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There are three ways product reviewers respond to all the gadgets and gizmos we receive: dislike and send them back promptly, use them for a while but not long-term, or keep them forever even if it means parting with hardly-earned cash. The new and favorite items discussed below can be proud to be in the latter group.

Apotop AP-U2 32GB USB2 External Storage Tiny Drive — available in five colors
Price: $40 Internet price

Apotop-AP-U2

As I write this article, Apotop’s exceptional new AP-U2 barely-external flash drive is inserted into one of my MacBook Pro’s USB ports. I am copying my entire 21.4 Music Folder from my Home Folder onto the remarkably small AP-U2, with its 32GB capacity.

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Powerocks Magic Cube Universal 6000mAh Extended Battery
Manufacturer: Powerocks
MSRP: $74.99, Amazon $50.48 (purple)
6210Powerocks
Power on the Go — Peace of Mind in a sack!

Our inventory of battery operated, USB charged, personal devices grows longer and longer. This situation translates into a greater likelihood of finding one of these running out of power at a critical moment. This could prevent you from keeping the kids entertained on a long trip or from getting that message from your spouse to pick up a gallon of milk on the way home from work.

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Newer Technology miniStack Max – Review

On June 14, 2013, in Features, Review, by Asher Weisberger

ministack
Newer Technology miniStack Max
Company: Other World Computing
Price: $319.19

There are many types of products on the market that help you cope with your storage, DVD/CD playback, or connection needs. You can easily go to a local store and pick up a few pieces of hardware like a Blu-ray player so you can view movies ,or a hard drive to store extra files of backups, or possibly a USB hub so you can meet your demand of USB connections.

Or instead you could use a product called the miniStack Max. The miniStack Max packs a whopping amount of hardware in a sleek aluminum body. You have many options when purchasing a miniStack Max. In total, 20 options. There are four different kits; within the first three kits there are six different storage size options from zero GB all the way to 4.0 TB.

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Mimobot USB Flash Drive: Picard — Review

On May 7, 2013, in Review, by Julie Kuehl


Captain Picard Mimobot
 — Boldly Goes Where No Flash Drive Has Gone Before!
Company: Mimoco
Capacity: 8 GB-64 GB
Compatible with: USB 2.0
Requires: OSX 10.83
Price: $24.95-66.99

Star Trek Picard Mimobot Flash Drive
ARE YOU KIDDING ME??? A Jean-Luc Picard USB stick?! How can you go wrong?

And you really can’t. The Captain Picard MIMOBOT 8 GB USB 2.0 Flash Drive available for this review is a wonderful little flash drive that you can use to store and move data files just like any other USB stick.

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Genius SP-U115 USB Speakers — Review

On March 13, 2013, in Audio, Review, Speakers, by Julie Kuehl

Genius SP-U115
Company: Genius
Version: SP-115
Compatible with: any computer (or device) with a 3.5mm audio jack
Requires: USB port for power
Price: $12.99 (on Amazon)

Proving once again that you get what you pay for, the Genius SP-115 speakers are a low-cost set of speakers for your computer. While these will work with the Mac on your desk, I think they are better suited to being travel companions where the price makes them almost disposable.

Genius SP-U115 Speakers

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PlugBug World USB Charger – Review

On February 14, 2013, in Adapter, iPad, iPhone, Macbook Air, Macbook Pro, Review, by David Cohen

PlugBug World Global MacBook Adapter and USB Charger
Company: Twelve South
Price: $44.99

USB chargers for your technology devices are ten a penny – many of us have plenty of them knocking around, as many devices come with one in the box. So how does Twelve South expect to deliver value (and drive sales) with yet another USB socket for the wall?

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Kinesis Keyboard – Review

On January 7, 2013, in Keyboard, Review, by Julie Kuehl

Kinesis Freestyle 2 Ergonomic Keyboard 
Company: Kinesis Corporation
Version: Freestyle2
Compatible with: Macs; separate version available for Windows
Requires: USB port, Mac OS X 10.4 or later for full functionality
Price: $109.00 for keyboard, $40.00 for VIP3 Accessory Kit

The Kinesis Freestyle2 keyboard is an ergonomic split keyboard that works flawlessly with Macs. It takes absolutely nothing more than plugging it in to set it up. If your brain and hands can wrap themselves around having a split keyboard, this one is wonderful.

Kinesis Freestyle2 keyboard flat with separated sections

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Just Mobile Highway
Review

On April 29, 2012, in Review, by Vicki Stokes

Just Mobile Highway
Company: Just Mobile
Price: $34.99


Just Mobile Highway is a car charger for iPhone, iPad and other USB-powered devices. The Highway plugs into the cigarette lighter, delivering 2.1A output to rapidly charge your mobile devices and a fuse to protect from power surges.

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Drive eRazer Ultra
Review

On February 27, 2012, in Adapter, Features, Hard Drive, Macintosh, Review, by John Nemerovski

Drive eRazer Ultra
CRU-DataPort
$212 to 249 online
Supplementary 1.8 and 2.5 inch combo adapters priced at $40 to $70

 

MyMac reviewed WiebeTech’s original Drive eRazer four years ago. This earlier model continues to work well here at Nemo’s MyMac Labs, but it has been discontinued. The new Ultra model adds functionality and versatility to a quest that is dear to every techie’s heart: I can’t wait to erase and reformat that annoying #$%^& hard drive.

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Wireless Solar Keyboard K750 for Mac
Logitech
$50 US

This new solar-powered wireless keyboard is almost perfect. It works great, but it has some perfectly annoying “features.”

There is no printed manual or full set of Internet instructions. Its web site is incomplete. No built-in indent on the keyboard is provided for storage and travel with its USB dongle. There is no way to know when the caps lock key is activated.

Aside from those four minuses, Logitech has done a stellar job with engineering and design of its new Wireless Solar Keyboard K750 for Mac. Solar and ambient light battery charging are effortless. So is power management using a free software download. Battery efficiency is exceptional.

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Two small, versatile, high-value computer accesssories:

Presenter Pro Remote with Green Laser
Kensington
$80

XtremKey
LaCie
$50 to $230, depending on capacity

In commando, stealth mode, I strolled casually into a retail store featuring computers by a well-known company from Cupertino. I unscrewed the base cap from LaCie’s XtremKey deluxe all-terrain USB flash storage drive, exposing its USB plug tip. I discretely inserted XtremKey into a rear USB port on a new iMac, and its icon mounted instantly on the computer’s Desktop.

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Two Unusual iPad Case/Stands Reviewed by Jackie Richards, Guest Writer

PowerBack Battery Case with Kickstand and Dock
Kensington
$90 to $130 online

PowerBack is a combo iPad case, stand, and battery pack. A metal kick stand supports PowerBack in four different easel positions: two each portrait and landscape. The hard plastic shell case of robust construction has precise grid edges for aligning and sliding your iPad in and out.

A Micro-USB port on the bottom rear connects PowerBack to a computer or other USB charging source via an included cable. You may need an inexpensive Kensington or third party USB wall or car charger if you discharge all iPad and PowerBack juice while away from a computer. Blue lights flash to indicate incremental charging capacity: 20 – 40 – 60 – 80 battery fuel gauge, as Kensington calls it. The company claims up to five extra hours of power and our tests confirm that approximate range, depending on iPad activity.

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MiCorder Digital MP3 Recorder
Review

On January 5, 2011, in Earphones, Features, Headphones, Review, Speakers, by John Nemerovski

MiCorder
Company: Olens Technology
$60 to $80 online


If you are an iPhone or iPod touch snob, stop reading now and get back to your favorite time-wasting toy. If you want to learn about a promising new audio recording device, keep reading.

MiCorder does only two things, and does them well. It records ambient sound, live music, and voice easily and efficiently with a built-in microphone in non-audiophile MP3 compression. And it records from any line audio source with an included cable, also as a 128mbps MP3. Stop yawning. The latter is MiCorder’s greatest asset.

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Matias Tactilepro 3
Review

On December 3, 2010, in Keyboard, Review, by Rich Lefko

Matias Tactilepro 3
Company: Matias
Price: $149.99 USD

Keyboards are very personal computer peripherals. The criteria you use to choose your keyboard can be very different than the criteria I use to choose mine. There are plenty of keyboards but most people use the Apple keyboard that came with their Mac. While the current Apple keyboards are fine, other keyboard manufacturers offer different functions, keys and options.

Its all about the keys

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By guest reviewer Devon Gilbert and John “Nemo” Nemerovski

Devon and Nemo spent hours listening, evaluating, and comparing these three innovative, affordable headphones with microphones, or headsets, if you prefer the term. We will first describe them one at a time before we rate or rank them.

Crossfade LP
Company: v-moda
Price: $200
Web site



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Pelican i1015
Company: Pelican
Price: $27 on Amazon


iPods and iPhones fit snugly in this hard plastic protective case from Pelican. The inside of the case is padded with rubber bumpers and also contains  an input for your earphones. Put your iPod in the case, connect the provided cable to it, lock the case with the snug and secure latches on the side and then connect your earphones to the external jack and you’re ready to go. The Pelican case feels secure and comes with a lifetime guarantee. I keep mine on the front seat of my car with my iPod in it and it’s hit the floor a few times on sudden stops. Both the case and my iPod still look like new. The case comes with a carabiner (or D-clip). You can start your music, lock the case and hang it on your belt or backpack. Another handy feature: The rubber rectangle inside the case that serves as a cushion for the iPone or iPod has a space under it where you can easily store your headphones . Everything rides in the same box and all of it is practically indestructible. Nice.

One caveat: The company says the case is not designed to be submerged in water. Don’t use it for swimming.

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Arctic Sound S111 Portable USB-powered Speakers
Company: Arctic Cooling
Price: $15.45 US
http://www.arctic-cooling.com/catalog/product_info.php?cPath=81_90&mID=581

USB powered speaker are lousy, right? Wrong! The chilled-out company Arctic Cooling just released a hot pair of stereo speakers that can play anywhere, and they mean anywhere. No sound panel preference settings or software drivers are necessary. Plug the audio cable for this high-performance pair of stylish gray speakers into your audio device, then provide a USB power source and blast off. Stereo separation is terrific.

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DataTale TQ-M12H – Review

On October 14, 2009, in Features, by John Nemerovski

DataTale TQ-M12H

Company: Oyen Digital
Price: $90
http://oyendigital.com/hard-drives/store/TQM12H.html

Get a handle on this unusual drive dock! I mean, you affix a brushed aluminum handle to an internal SATA full size 3.5 inch hard drive. This handle is a guide as you insert your drive into a custom powered bay that connects to your Macintosh via FireWire 800/400/USB/eSATA. All necessary cables are provided, colored white.

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Kanex Mini DisplayPort Adapter To HDMI 1080p Video w/ Digital Audio
Company: Kanex, Inc.

Price: $69.99
http://kanexlive.com

Apple’s incorporation of the Mini DisplayPort in its newer computers has produced big changes for people who wish to send video and audio-out signals from the Macs to drive their HD televisions with an HDMI signal. Currently, the Unibody MacBook, MacBook Pro, MacBook Air, Mac Mini, and iMac all use Mini DisplayPort.

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