KELODO S590-TWS True Wireless Wireless Headphones

True Wireless Headphone seem to be everywhere now. At one time only high-end models were available at great cost followed later by cheap and nasty clones with poor sound, complicated pairing routines and poor linking. Now and at last decent quality but reasonably priced devices are starting to appear.

I have been looking for a pair of back up true wireless earbuds for use in situations where I may lose my expensive Jabra Elite Sport set. I will use the Jabra’s as a reference point in this review, which may seem unfair but time has moved on and even budget devices are offering better sound and more features.

This new headset from KELODO arrived in a small, downmarket and rather plain box which somewhat diminishes the product within. Inside were the earpieces themselves, charging case, a short USB to micro-USB charging cable, three sets of buds (one set prefitted), and a User Guide. The User Guide is well written, nicely printed but poorly translated and encloses a scan of it on my unboxing video.

The case has an internal 400mAh battery which is charged using the supplied USB cable and it is the case battery which charges the earbud batteries. The case will be able to fully charge the 60 mAh earbud batteries several times with each charge taking about ninety minutes. There are LED ’s on each bud to show battery status. The buds will charge automatically when placed into the case.

Pairing the Bluetooth 4.1 earbuds was easy enough although more of a performance than with Jabra.
1. Set the phone to Bluetooth pairing mode
2. Press the button on both earbuds simultaneously, both bud LEDs will flash red/blue
3. Double click on one earbud button, when the other bud LED is off it means the buds are linked together.
4. On your phone pair in the usual way to Bluetooth device ‘S590-TW’. You will hear a ‘Source Connected’ voice prompt.

This is more easily performed than explained and is made easier with the use of voice prompts during the pairing process. It only needs to be done once. The two buds can work independently of each other as mono buds if needed.

Once paired, using the buds is simple enough. Press the buttons on both buds for about three seconds to turn on, they will then connect to the paired phone automatically. To switch off either press the button again or return to the case where they will switch off and start charging.

Audio quality was good and in fact rather better than I was expecting. There is reasonable bass with mid and upper tones clear and well defined. I found the tone to be somewhat harsher and less refined than from the Jabra’s but more than good enough for general use.

The headset has a microphone and can be used to receive and make calls and when testing I found the conversation was clear and audible both ends. Calls can be muted/rejected/ended/redialed by pressing the right bud button. Tracks can be paused/ played by double pressing either earbud button. There are no track advance or audio volume controls.

Battery life is good and comparable to the Jabra’s and I have obtained up to three hours of music playing time following a charge. The charging case is robust and well made and magnetically holds the buds at least as well as the Jabra’s although the case looks and feels cheaper and lacks the auto On feature which is one of the best features of the expensive rival. The buds are described as sweatproof but no IP rating for this is given.

At just £29.99 this headset is a fraction of the price my more expensive set but gives it a run for its money as regards sound quality and features. It falls down a bit on functionality, build quality and convenience of use and of course, none of the Jabra sports features is present (not that I ever use them). These buds are smaller and lighter than the Jabra’s and this is an advantage or otherwise according to your preference.

This is by no means the least expensive TW headset available but as the market cools down a new generation of well-specified good sounding devices such as this is emerging.

The Good
Good audio quality
Charging case
Voice prompts
Good battery life
Single bud operation option

The Bad
No auto On
Fiddly initial setup
No USB-C
No Bluetooth 5
No IP Waterproof rating

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DJI Osmo Mobile 2

There is no shortage of detailed technical reviews available for this £129.00 three axis gimbal from DJI. Instead, I will give a brief account of my experiences with the device and contrast it to the two other gimbals I already own. I already own the two-axis X-Cam Creative Sight and the three-axis Zhiyun Z1 .

I really did not get on with either of the two older gimbals. Both I found to be tricky to configure, all gimbals have to be balanced and set up prior to use to cause the minimum strain on the tiny delicate motors within. The small two-axis model was easier to set up but needed an Allen key to do so and worked reasonably well although with limited Bluetooth capabilities and a feeble plastic construction. The larger Z1 model was more powerful but a nightmare to configure with an impenetrable User Guide and never worked as well I hoped. I have to say the DJI Osmo Mobile 2 came as a breath of fresh air. It worked straight from the box and fine-tuning the configuration was quick and easy.

In the large and rather upmarket box was the gimbal itself, a short charging cable and a well written but rather hard to read User Guide. The User Guide is just for the gimbal itself and not for the DJI Go app, which is an important part of the package and needs to be downloaded from Google or Apple. No case as such is included but the device comes with a robust shaped foam insert which can serve as a case although it has no handle or locking mechanism. Many cases are available online and I have ordered this budget suitcase style case into which the DJI foam insert can be fitted: HUHU833 For DJI OSMO Mobile 2.

The device is a similar shape to most of the three-axis rivals but is made largely from plastic rather than metal and has a cheap and lightweight feel to it which is disappointing. There are metal thumbwheels to position the phone so the point of best balance can be found and a spring style grip for the phone itself. On one side is a slider used with the DJI Go app to control digital zooms and on the front panel are controls to power the device On/Off, camera Off/On, pan/tilt joystick, battery and mode status LEDs. On the side is a power-in micro USB port and on the rear, a USB power out port used to charge or power the camera or other external devices.

Aside from the lightweight build quality, I am very happy with the gimbal itself. It is simple to use, works well and has an excellent battery capable of powering the device for several days of extended use between charges.

The DJI Go app is more problematic. ON my OnePlus 5T Android phone I found it to be a bit buggy and awkward to use at times. However, it does offer some excellent features allowing automated time-lapse and planning routines. It also has a tracking mode which allows you to select an item on the screen which the camera will follow keeping it in position and in focus as the camera is moved. That aside, for general use I prefer to use the very much more powerful FiLMiC Pro which also offers some integration with the Osmo Mobile 2 controls.

The DJI Osmo Mobile 2 is by far the best three axis gimbal I have used and is available at the remarkable price of £129. There are cheaper and possibly more powerful rivals available but none so easy to use and configure at this price point.

The Good
Great Price
Great Battery Life
Easy to Use
Easy to Configure

The Bad
Flaky Android App
No proper Case included
External USB Port Poorly positioned
Poor User Guide
Lightweight Build

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Heiyo 2 in 1 Wireless Car Charger Phone Mount

I have tried other wireless car chargers before but this one is more than just a charger. It also offers a fully automated app-based car location service.

The charger arrived presented in an attractive mid-market box that helps make the product eminently suitable as a gift. Inside the box was the charger itself together with a rather short USB-micro USB cable, airvent adapter, dashboard mount and a two well printed and easy to read user Guides, one for the charger and the other for the car location app.

Build quality seems fine if rather lightweight. The charger has a matt black finish with steel effect highlighting. The two mount adapters attach to the rear of the charger with a ball and socket joint. The air mount adapter can be adjusted to suit varying grill types and the dashboard mount comes with a prefitted sticky pad. No old-style cigar lighter interface is included but then almost all modern cars now come with USB ports. It should work safely with any phone as it has electronic and short-circuit protection.

Having mounted the device using it could not be easier. As with all wireless chargers just put the phone into the mount and touching the charging pad and it will work automatically. In fact, this one is easier to use than desktop chargers because the phone is held in place and positioned exactly over the charging coil by three retractable and adjustable arms that grip it tightly and securely. It should be noted that the arms can be adjusted to suit phones of different lengths as well as width, unlike with some lesser rivals. This adjustable length feature means that even new 18:9 format phones should fit safely into it. The secure mount coupled with the ball and socket joint on the rear means the phone can be quickly and safely rotated from portrait to landscape modes with no fear of it falling out.

The selling point of this device and the feature that lifts it above the herd is the car location feature. The charger has a built-in Bluetooth beacon and after installing the free iPark app the beacon will connect to your phone and automatically tell the iPark app to remember the current GPS location. When you leave the car and go out of Bluetooth range the app can be used to show you where you last parked and guide you back to it. The app also allows you to take a photo of the precise location and append that to the map.

I found that the device worked well both in the car and when tested on my desktop. The choice of mounts should make it suitable for any vehicle and the standard charging protocol should mean it will work with any wireless charging equipped device.

The unit is currently available on Amazon for £23.99 and at that price is a great buy for the convenience and versatility of in-car wireless charging as well as the security of the car location service.

The Good
Good Build Quality
Easy to Use
Good User Guide
Good Presentation
Works well
Excellent Car Finder App

The Bad
Power cable too short
No cigar lighter interface
Lightweight construction

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USB 2.0 External Sound Card 3D 7.1 Audio Adapter from WRTTRHTYNMNTUJ

A 7.1 Channel sound card for £0.42? A piece of junk, right. Yes, right, at least from my experience.

I saw this on Amazon for the remarkable price of just £0.42 including shipping from China and I thought I would give it a try just for fun. It gets three and a half stars on Amazon with eighty-five reviews so some people are clearly happy with it.

The first thought that comes to mind is how can they ship it from China for that price never mind actually manufacturer it? It turns out that due to trade agreement Chinese suppliers receive VAT exemption as well as virtually free shipping. This article explains it.

So what of the sound card? It arrived safely enough after a few weeks in a reinforced jiffy bag. Inside was just the sound card itself, no box, instructions or paperwork. No sign too of the promised ‘Xear 3D Sound simulation software’.

The device is a USB plug-in sized 11 x 10 x 1.3 cm. It has two colour coded 3.5mm jack ports, one for audio out and the other for a microphone. On the front are the mic and audio out Off/On buttons, volume up and down buttons together with LEDs for power and microphone status.

When I plugged it in the LED lit up and the device appeared to be working. Audio from it was appalling, muffled distorted and clipped. The sound was far worse than using the built-in Windows 10 sound card. After some minutes experimenting with it I then immediately binned it. Actually, that may have been a mistake as following some online research it seems that the device needs the correct drivers and software to work properly. Search for ‘Cmedia CM108 drivers’ and/or ‘Xear 3D’ and with this software installed the unit works well. Of course, I can’t attest to that myself as I no longer have the little unit to try it with!

If you have 42p burning a hole in your pocket and don’t mind some online research then maybe this could be for you.

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Ecohound 500 Large Thick Prime Quality Dark Green Dog Waste Bags

 

We have two dogs, Poppy and Blenheim, both hardcore pooing machines when out on their walk. They think nothing of going half a dozen times each when out and about. So it is that our household goes through vast quantities of poo bags and so it is that sourcing decent quality bags at a reasonable price is a not unimportant thing.

What do we want from our poo bags? Strong: the horrors of a burst or split poo bag are best left to the imagination. Capacious: Blenheim is a big boy with a hearty appetite, need I say more? Scented: no need to expand more on that topic. Tie Handles: crucial to keep the contents in place and to keep the fingers as far away from that which lies within as possible. Price: with two dogs in tow that have devoted their lives to both eating and pooing the less expensive the bags the better.

These bags from Ecohound are well priced at £12.95 for 500. Smaller quantity boxes are available but work out more expensive per bag. They come folded rather than on rolls, which is a good or bad thing according to your preference. They are a thick enough and a decent size at 38cmx 17cm with large and easy to tie handles. They are also eco-friendly, we are told, and so will dissolve into the earth over time. They are unscented, which is a pity, but you cannot have everything.

If you are in the market for poo bags, and how many dog owners are not, then these are a rather good buy.

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Northwest Territory Mens Lace UP Waterproof Walking/Hiking Boots

I hate buying boots. No matter what I pay for them and even with careful use and loving care and attention together with plentiful dubbin, they all start to let what in after a couple of months and then after that the sole will start to come off. No matter if I pay £20 or £200 they always go the same way.

So when it came time to buy yet another pair (I am sick of wearing plastic bags inside my boots!) I did not want to pay too much and looked around for a pair that seemed to lay emphasis on their waterproof qualities. This pair from Northwest Territory seemed to fit the bill and at £37.99 were not too dear.

The boots arrived in an impressive if somewhat battered box but the boots within were fine and survived the journey intact.

Although a range of colours is on offer I selected ‘Black Hunter 2’ (what happened to Black Hunter 1?) and they have a matt black finish with mesh effect inserts. The soles are heavy duty, deeply ridged for grip and have a high side outlined in grey. The uppers reach to just above the ankle and have a rear pull strap through laces can be threaded. The supplied laces are quite thin and are not long enough for me. Without looping around the back they are long enough to tie a simple double bow only. I would have preferred heavier laces at least a foot longer.

The boots are very lightweight and comfortable to wear and for me needed no breaking in. It is very early days yet but they do seem pretty waterproof and walking through a few modest puddles does not seem to phase them. They seem to be well made and of good quality and I am cautiously optimistic about how long they will last. If they start to pack in too soon I will update this review accordingly.

The Good
Good Price
Attractive Design
Well Made
Waterproof
Lightweight
Comfortable
Heavy Duty soles

The Bad
Laces too short

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OneAudio Rhombus Over Ear Headphones

I don’t usually review budget priced regular non-Bluetooth headphones as they seldom have anything of interest about them but this new headset from OneAudio caught my eye and also my ears and so thought I would give them a go.

The headset arrived packaged in a simple but attractive box which reflected the price of the headset more than the quality. Inside the box aside from the headset itself was a large and well-written User Guide together with a USB-C to 3.5mm mini-jack audio adapter This is the first time I have seen such an adapter bundled with a budget headset and it reflects the trend of modern phones to abandon the headset jack in favour of USB-C. The User Guide I reproduce at the end of my unboxing video.

The headset is lightweight and since this is listed in the product Amazon description it is seen as being a feature rather than a failing. According to the same product page, the headset weighs in at just 150gm and whatever the actual weight they certainly are one of the lightest full-size headsets I have tried. The body feels a bit flimsy but well made with no visible wires, weak joints or poor stitching in the padding, which is soft and comfortable if not over generous. Time will tell and if something fails in the future I will update the review accordingly.

The headset comes with a hard-wired 1.2M braided cable, which feels strong and robust. The headset features a large and easy to use in-line control box with a built-in omnidirectional microphone. The box has a slider for the audio volume together with a button to play/pause music and answer/refuse incoming calls.

The main feature of any headset is the audio quality and bearing in mind that this is a budget device I was very happy with the sound. The headset claims a 20-20KHz frequency range with 40mm drivers. There is a respectable amount of bass and it is clear, smooth and undistorted. Mid tones are clean and detailed and very easy to listen to. The sound is rather flat but comfortable and never abrasive or sibilant to my ears. The sound is OK, not bad but nothing to write home about. I made and received test calls using the built-in microphone and both sides of the conversation seemed reasonably clear and loud.

This a well-made set of headphones, lightweight and comfortable to wear with decent sound quality and at a price that cannot be bettered. It lacks a case and a few high-end features but at this price, they cannot be expected. Currently priced at just £21.99 this headset would be a great for use as a backup, for general listening or as the first set for a youngster.

The Good
Excellent sound quality
In-Line Controls
Good build quality
Lightweight
Microphone
Good User Guide
USB-C adapter
Braided cable

The Bad
Average padding
No Airline adapter
No carry case
Limited earcup movement

More info and purchase