home: Apple Gizmo, Gadgets and Accessories Review

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home: Apple Gizmo, Gadgets and Accessories Review

I finally got six weeks worth of Amazon orders and gadgets, and here is a review of the various components:

  1. Replacement Tips. These are little tips that you put on your Apple Pencil because these wear out when you are using the screen protectors that give some friction.
  2. Apple Pencil. This thing costs $88 when on sale with Amazon. I've already lost one and this is a nice backup.
  3. Paperlike iPad Screen Protector. This actually does dim the display which kind of sucks for watching TV but man although expensive, it does such a nice job of making this work with just enough friction to feel like a real pen. This thing is really expensive, but it is so useful if you are writing a lot. I'm finding that the Nebo works well as an OCR application, but the base Apple Notes is actually quite good. I also got much cheaper KCT Paperfeel so will try them after the Paperlike wears out.
  4. Allun 3Pack. These are really cheap and they do work well for the iPhone 14 Pro
  5. SAIJI Adjustable Tablet Stand. Okay, you will laugh, but I don't typically mount my UniFi APs on the walls because I always move them. These are little plastic stands (so RF transparent) and are great for just sticking an AP on it and then you can adjust how it points.
  6. Bcuckood FitBit Inspire 3 Bands. Wow for such a low price, yes Fakespot hates them, but they have the larger pins that work on the latest Inspire 2. They changed the size of the pins between versions if you can believe that.
  7. DuHeSin USB C Magnetic Adapters. These are very cheap and seem to work well, they come in a variety of different sizes from Wrap around 180 degrees to side connecting. The main issue is that I need way more USB-C cable adapters since I want to plug this in at different places, but they only come in pairs. They connect the full 24-pins so they support 140W charging, 40GBps Thunderbolt, and USB C which is very nice. So I'm going to end up with way more adapters for my iPad that are moving around (this is great since you have MagSafe for phones and MacBooks, but iPads don't have this, so this gives it to you). It has good Fakespot ratings, but we will see how long it lasts. You can get just the tips separately for $10 for 3, but the adapters are $17 for two.
  8. Newon Spring Bar. These watch bands lost the little strap connector and I bought this little $6 kit so I could just put the little spring bar back in. It's actually silver colored and I need a bronze, but you can't really even see it.
  9. CableCreation 2m USB C PD 100W LED Display or the SOOPII 4 Foot cable with LED. These are actually way more useful than you would think. They only work at 480Mbps, so don't use them for data, but knowing your device is charging and how much is really nice. The 1 meter version is really nice when you are on the road. Note that the SOOPII is much cheaper at $8 with the LED display, but I did have one fail and they gave me a new one.

Here are the ones I haven't tried but will review shortly, but here are some automotive and things:

  1. ShockFlo Tesla to J1772. This lets you use an existing Tesla home charger to work for other EVs that use the standard J1772 connector. So if you (like me!) don't like Tesla, you don't have to throw away the charger. It works up to 80A at 250V so won't work for Superchargers, but is great for destination and home chargers.

The accessories for the Zoom Studio I've been building:

  1. VILTROX 2m External Power Supply. This works really nicely with the VILTROX LED light so that you don't have to run out of batteries all the time. I think this is a generic 12V 2A power supply but the barrels on these are always custom.
  2. ChromLives Cold Shoe Triple Mount. This is nice if you want to put both a microphone and a light on your camera so you get some direct light and can still use your shotgun microphone. Works well.

Then there are Apple Home devices which are actually working pretty well. I already have a bunch of things using Thread

  1. Onvis Matter Smart Plug. Our WeMo plugs that use WiFi are really unreliable, so going to try to use this plug instead. In theory should work better. The nice thing is that since it is a Matter device.
  2. Eve Water Guard. This is a nice water detector because it has an extendible system that works from AC power, but it has a long wire so it can detect leaks over a 6-22 foot area. This allows you to detect leaks easily. The nice thing is that it is long, but the bad thing is that if you lose power, then you lose the water guard. This is also a Thread border router so that's handy.
  3. Eve Weather. This works really well, it is tiny and battery-powered and gives you outside temperature and humidity, it is so small that you can actually tape it to the outside of the window if you like.
  4. Kasa Matter WiFi plugs. These are really cheap as a four-pack and have a terrible Fakespot rating, but they are so cheap I thought I would try them.
  5. SwitchBot Hub, Curtains, and Solar Panel. This I haven't installed yet and they just updated it, but it makes existing curtains smart which is great!

Then finally there is outdoor lighting. A lot of our old ones have failed, so here's the new set and preliminary reviews of them:

  1. ILC 80W Outdoor RGB IP66. These are actually Bluetooth-controlled so much better than the Remote control ones I got three years ago. I can't wait until they just support Thread and you can use Apple Home with them. They use an application called BiLight. It is super simple to set up. Just plug it in and it blinks on and off. Then load the BiLight application and choose add and there it is.
  2. MELPO 30W IP66 Outdoor RGB. They have different manufacturers, but they are definitely the same light. This uses something called BiMesh which seems to be exactly like BiLight. The older lights I had were IR-controlled, so this is much better although now your entire lawn is covered with 2.4GHz Bluetooth interference which kind of is amazing but inconvenient. These should all just be Matter devices in the end.

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