Thursday, August 21, 2014

Cool Gear,Gadgets, Trends-Staying Connected, Protected Portable Power-OR S/S 2015


Part 4

Want to live life everywhere, accompanied by some toe-tapping tunes? No problem, wherever one ventures forth- the sounds of music -or anything else broadcast on a smartphone/tablet- can be blasted out via many durable options -that project and/or power up personal electronics.


Braven got two thumbs from a fellow attendee-so we checked out their wide range of wireless bluetooth speakers and portable power-for the outdoors. Pictured on right the 20 watts of sound boomer 855S ($299.99) water resistant shell with tablet charging and kick out tunes for 20 hours. The white BRV-Bank™ $129.99 on left (and in back-other colors)  Bluetooth enabled (interesting), USB controlled ultra rugged power bank delivering 6000mAh in a IPX5 water resistant rubber exterior.
OUTDOOR TECH's distinctive looking shock proof/water-resistant Turtle Shell speakers come in 2 sizes and rainbow worthy color options…delivering a wall of sound that is richly hi-fi -not tinny. Above Turtle Shell 2.0 -$129.99 -16 hours play time. Below Big Turtle Shell $229.95 with a 32 ft. of bluetooth range has an internal power bank with usb output. Party On!

Different sized ear outer canals are fitted A-OK with yurbuds™ one of the first in ear headphones made for the sporty type who sweat up a storm. Inspire Pro+ Limited edition  both have a 3 button water resistant sweat tough microphone so one never misses a conference call when training for an Ironman…fully integrated with Apple products. Guaranteed never to fall out while on the go.

EnerPlex had attendees at the Outdoor Nation's fundraiser charging up with the ultra thin 3200 mAh Jumpr Stack 3 that  extends smartphone's power by 100%-200% (up to 8 hours) with a tethered micro USB output. Also has tethered lightning output-fits camera charge cord. $39.99. PLUS: Pair (stack-up) more than one of these to simultaneously charge power hungry devices/ batteries via its magnetic stack and charge functionality. Nifty.
A Tech zone over in the PV section- showed off clever products aimed at protecting and enhancing smartphones…some highlights-----
Juice packs $99.95-extends life of many different models of smartphones in durable case-Power Stations of all sizes (from $39.95 up to $129.95) fire up smartphones+other USB  devices. Juice Pack Outdoor Editions ($119.95-$149.95) super rugged case -2 versions pair up w/ GPS app while extending battery life

Riding around in your automobile is a multi-tasking endeavor with a Mophie car charger that can power personal electronics. IMO-must have.

For a 'low tech product'-that protects a high tech product-we thought Armpocket Armband cases just  so practical-that although we don't workout to music…the clever interior slots for cards/keys-plus a separator band inside the über light foam holder-that can fit even another MP3s (or more cards, lip protector etc)…all without being bulky…is THE way of finding our smartphone/keys in a sec- without an archeological worthy expedition inside our backpack/oversized tote- hauled around on a daily basis.

different sizes for different size smartphones and arm widths…multiple color options. Water resistant ArmPocket  armband cases also has earphone outlets and a plastic screen that allows for use of touch-screen devices ($29.95-$39.95). Bonus points…made from recycled PET and straps edges from bamboo rayon. Machine wash cold water (empty, duh).
There's a reason iPhones are replacing even wi-fi enabled cameras for the selfie generation…olloclip®'s clip on 4-in-1 (works with iPad mini and Air), Telephoto- with circular polarizing lens for 2x magnification and richer color, less glare+reflection, Macro 3-in-1, and original 3-in-1=lenses take photos/videos to a pro level of detail and clarity. Made of aircraft grade aluminum and precision ground coated glass optics.

4-in-1 lens

iPhone compatible =iPod adapter available…slides/snaps right on

fisheye lens…part of 4-in-1 lens-super clear images…also includes wide angle, and 2 macros -10x and 15x

QuickFlip™ case works with tripods via an included Pro-Photo Adaptor. Case corner rotates to create an easy to use shutter release with the + button on the phone.

crazy detail…massively impressive-Macro 3-in -1 lens=7x, 14x, or 21x Macro magnification.

all clip right on

wannabe Chuck Close painters will love the scary close details…not recommended for selfies
All lenses come with lens cap and microfiber carrying case doubles as cleaning cloth.
The InstaFocus™ hood (included) specially designed to diffuse the light and facilitate focusing
StrongVolt showed off their Suntrack Technology™ with auto reconnection-powers off in the shade and then can automatically reconnects your device to power win back in the sun.

a plug in USB (at top of indicator) and device selection indicator-helps gets perfect amount of power for device being charged-specifically developed for Apple products works with Android too…different sizes for different charge times $49.99-$159.99

pong-case contains a built in antenna technology-a micro-thin, gold antenna that redirects wireless energy away from the user's body. Probably a very good thing (up to 82% below SAR limit). ..and thereby increasing transmitted signal by 25%
$59.99-Classic size 

PURE.GEAR® Making a Case For Life®-had a wide assortment of products for Apple/Samsung personal electronics

DualTek XT for extreme terrain certified IP65 rating (military standard, fyi)-dustproof +water resistant protection for iPhone

shock absorbing corners, ergonomic clip, screen shield bans scratches $49.99

new-arm band strap that easily clip on and off

slide off the strap-use the protective case on its own---great multi-tasker

Secur Solar-cellphone charger via the sun and a utility light-$-has micro usb port s for charging  devices, 2 level LED light-emergency flash feature. 

Another cool product from Outdoor Tech...
Annie Get Your Gun worthy (Irving Berlin's fab lyrics/music belted out by icon Ethel Merman) deftly channeled with the …anything you can do we can do 3 times better…CALAMARI…only one charge cable with 3 connector heads/one wire needed to power up all your devices …check out the top …comes in different colors too.

GOAL ZERO shows JUST HOW WATERPROOF their new Venture 30 recharger/portable power is...
IPX6 weatherproof rating, no rubber plugs needed,  30Wh 7800 mAh recharger,  built-in micro USB cable tip-tangle free charging for phones/tablets, solar ready built in charging tip-4 hours USB or 9 hours full sun , high speed USB 4.8 A across dual ports ---can charge smartphones 2-3x..and 2 devices at one time. $99 

Massively solid-this  Brunton BOLT PRO XL and BOLT PRO devices= power giants should be mandatory purchase for all our suburban dwelling pals who lost 2 weeks worth of power-post  Hurricane Sandy---even their back-up generators only lasted a few days.

delivering January 2015…ready in time for winter power losses---28 pound BOLT PRO XL $1899 -512WH Lithium Polymer Battery with 500 watt continuous output, several input (AC 110v, Solar)-output (2xAC, 110v, DC 15V, USB 5V) receptors-and a model for Euro 220V in/outputs also available ,  in an IPX waterproof case built in protection against overload as well as under voltage monitoring. Pretty fabulous and at 28lbs-stick it in a car.

Brunton PRO Bolt model same features as above but lighter weight at 19 lbs/less capacity 265WH lithium polymer battery-continuous 400 watt output. $1099

GoPro cameras are mounted everywhere-kinda like Google Maps-mapping drones. It is a category definer---and even its debut on NASDAQ (symbol GPRO) exploded up. Holy Cow! Lucky insiders…
Brunton extends the video taking for GoPro® Hero 3+-water proof and water resistant All Day High Capacity Power Supply doubles as a power supply -other personal electronics too-via a sealed side access door. 3-in-1 adapter cable included, micro USB input-fits the GoPro case perfectly---$49.99
GoPro® Hero® 3+™ Black Edition

best thing about the GoPro® booth during a rain shower on Demo Day-besides fairly excellent coverage---this adorable dog.

Part 1 Manly Snacks
Part 2 Energy on the go
Part 3 Glamping+Grilling

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Cool Gear/Gadgets/Trends:Outdoor Retailer S/S 2015 Glamping+Grilling

Part 3
Outdoor Nation Fundraiser...

People  are experiencing the outdoors in ways that are decidedly inside their comfort zones...
getting youth outdoors and moving…more needed than ever with school budgets eliminating phys ed. 

…including urban area settings and easily accessed woodsy locales via automotive vehicles as well as on foot. Which means that getting outdoors means a lot of different things to all those market segments…resulting in scores of companies, established and KickStarted-with gear/gadgets determined to keep individuals well fed…and comfy.


Pineview Reservoir
Glamping got off to an early Demo Day start the night prior via Barebones mini-village complete with outdoor BBQs-s'mores set-ups, cold beer…

...and insulating cabin-like tents  -that reminded us of facilities used by African safari tour operators.

Barebones has 5 safari/cabin tents… different sizes and some with outside awnings..

Glamping =no need to haul equipment around…and someone else sets up/breaks down the tents, brings the food and drinks, makes the meals, and cleans up.
inside-light, ventilation, bug netting, cots...
The automobile got major play this OR with an entire section devoted to tailgating…and portable outdoor kitchen set-ups, served up gourmet eats that defy what stereotypical camping out food used to be.
PRIMUS  Camping makes affordable stoves/grills ($109.95-$199.95) for base camps---clearly these  are serious heat fast and evenly too.

portable stoves for trekking+ expeditions-also by Primus

Matt Eels and IN THE WILD Chef/Cookbook author Steve Weston kept the crowds happily sampling good eats. Very impressive. 

no doubt, popular guy at a BBQ

Tasty eating at the Outdoor Foundation fund raiser…qualifies for glamping =our definition of...

Brooklyn based BioLite has been around for a few years---ever since we saw them at a Demo Days gone by, we are mildly obsessed and beyond impressed that with a few twigs-one can heat up and charge up food, water and personal electronics, respectively. Courtesy of a patented thermoelectric technology that converts the fire (fueled by wood not fossil fuels, propane or charcoal)-into electricity powering an internal fan that improves overall combustion , creating an ultra efficient and practically smokeless fire..
BioLite KettlePot ($49.95)-2 in 1 cooking+pouring the top part stores CampStove

cooking for a crowd-check out this biggie-BioLite BaseCamp with included FlexLight (pictured below)  has a 1 touch lever transform flames to meet variety of cooking needs. Good for home patios too. $299.95

BioLite CampStove $129.95 portable+compact

BioLite PowerLight compact 2-in-1 lantern& torch with USB output can charge up to 3 smartphones or 4 BioLite Sitelights…itself gets charged up via USB source -of the amazing KettleCharge- with included heat resistant flexible USB extender. $149.95
the KettleCharge with the fold down handle (where USB outlets and indicator are placed)- boils up/sterilizes water…pour it in via that open slit  pictured lower left of the kettle…and within minutes, there's 10W on-demand power ready to charge phones, tablets, lights with the output of a wall unit
there's even a smart dashboard that gives the 411 on the heat of the kettle and the amount of power being generated. BONUS can use it on your regular inside stove or other portable ones- too-very Alessi looking 

ZIPPO® Outdoor showed off a slew of outdoor user friendly products---including these sparkling grills that fascinated us…and we don't even cook.

WindProof™ Stove-with windproof burner technology-stainless steel chimney's with proprietary tech keep it all lit-even on windiest days…like the lighters.  Cast aluminum body and lid,  leg and propane storage,push button electronic ignition for dual burners, lid-lock pins for ez transpire, leveling feet, table top model available too. $249.95

All-Terrain Grill™=cast aluminum firebox body and lid hold heat in longer, and the entire durable construction-the company makes their own parts, fiy-including efficient twin burners, legs, axles and wheels can handle rough environments -ready to roll $399.95
One might need a helping hand to stick in the trunk of an SUV (45lbs)…but this All-Terrain Grill™ is extremely portable/functional -folding down easy…with a insertable pin to lock it tight. And it can cook up A LOT with a 223 sq inch cook surface.
unlatch---easy folding spring assisted X-Frame...

collapses and tools away on rugged wheels-anti-rattle transport too via rubber coated wheels!
Other features-a plate that vaporizes drippings and holds in flavors,
runs on 1lb or 20lb propane canisters

attaches propane …push button ignition
Beyond picky coffee drinkers can bring their own!!!!

2 sizes available 17 oz $50 and 1.1 quart-lid separates into 2 cups for sharing, dry storage in stopper holds coffee grounds, vacuum insulated bottle keeps things hot, integrated bottle+press brews bottle's worth of coffee-then nest pot to save space. 18/8 stainless steel is rust free. Leak proof and insulated.
The Stanley booth literally stopped us in our tracks…with this portable "Pack Less & Brew Better" french press and integrated vacuum coffee system. We can't wait for it to deliver.

also available soon- keep it warm for 13 hours, or 11 hours cold-the 20oz $50 Mountain Vacuum Food System-with integrated spark, leak-proof, 18/8 stainless steel won't rust and is naturally BPA free.
Part 1 Manly Snacks
Part 2 Energy on the go
Part 4 Staying Connected-Powering Up-Portably