NOMAD ChargeKey – Review (@nomadgoods)

Let’s face it – walking around with a charging cable for your devices in your pocket is not ideal, and I doubt many people do it.  Having the option to carry something lightweight, small, and fully portable, however, is great and is now possible thanks to the affordable NOMAD ChargeKey.  NOMAD were kind enough to send me out one of their Micro USB to USB ChargeKey units that should work with all Micro USB devices.  Also available is a Lightning connector for use with the new iDevice models.

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The ChargeKey arrived in a very simple cardboard envelope packaging.  Simply open up the front and you are greeted with the Key itself.  That’s it!  Remove the Key from the sticky adhesive that holds it in place and you are good to go.  Size wise, the Key is no bigger than a standard house key, which makes it the ideal size to attach to your keys and carry it about with you.

The Key itself is made from a hard plastic at the two ends, one end with the Micro USB connector and the other with the main USB connector, and also has a rubber material in the middle that allows it some room to move about.  This could prove handy for a few reasons – less chance of it poking you while in your pocket, less chance of it being damaged and snapping while in your pocket, and lastly, it allows a bit of movement when hooking up your device.

When it came to using my phone with the Key, I had it connected to my laptop.  I didn’t want to risk using it with a wall adapter as it would mean leaving my phone hanging and to be honest, that would kind of defeat the object of the Key as if you are at home, you would use your wall adapter any way.  Having it hooked up to the laptop though, charging started as you would expect and I was also able to sync my phones photos and emails as well.  I also gave it a try using one of the PowerBanks that I have and am happy to say that that worked as it should.

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Overall, the NOMAD ChargeKey does what it says.  It is small, lightweight, portable, and comes in handy when you least expect it.  Always having it to hand is a major plus thanks to being able to have it attached to my keys and knowing that I don’t have to walk about with a charging cable in my pocket or bag is handy.  You never know when you’re going to be caught without power!  Priced at an affordable £20 over on Amazon UK, I think it is a must have addition, especially for those of you who like to be able to stay connected all of the time!

PocketBoom Rechargeable Bluetooth Portable Speaker – Review (@KitSoundUK)

I was recently sent the PocketBoom Rechargeable Bluetooth Portable Speaker for review from the guys over at KitSound.  This is one product I was looking forward to getting to grips with.  Check out the unboxing video below.

Setting the speaker up for use was an easy task.  simply power on the PocketBoom speaker and put your phone/device into visible mode.  Your device should pick up the speaker after a few seconds – once it has, choose the speaker from the list of available devices and it should pair up.  If you run into any issues when it comes to pairing the devices, check out the included user manual and you should be sorted in no time.

The sound that the PocketBoom pushes out is surprisingly awesome!  For such a small device, I was not expecting what I heard.  The speaker pushes out a decent amount of bass as well, but depending on what device you are using it with, you may want to adjust the levels on the device itself beforehand to get the best sound out of things – even if you download an equalizer app or something to help with this, it is definitely worth it.

Because the speaker also doubles up as a hands-free device, I was itching to try out both the incoming, and outgoing sound quality.  When a call comes through, simply press the little button on the top of the speaker (the one with the phone icon) and you will be connected.  Incoming call quality through the speaker was great quality and did not come through distorted at all – again, very surprised at the quality.  Outgoing voice was a little on the quiet side when listening through the phone, but I could still hear what was going on.  This was easily rectified by rotating the speaker a little so that the small microphone port was facing the person talking rather than facing the opposite way.

The small rubber section on the bass of the speaker provided a decent amount of grip when the speaker was placed on a surface.  Pressing the buttons, etc, did not cause the speaker to move about unnecessarily, something else that I really liked.  The overall design of the speaker is very easy on the eye and definitely something that you would not be embarrassed to be seen with.

Having the option to connect up a 3.5 to 3.5mm cable is handy, especially if you have been using the PocketBoom for a prolonged period of time via bluetooth and the battery is starting to get low – you can still use the speaker if you are not ready to power down just yet.  When it comes to recharging the speaker, simply connect up the Micro USB cable and plug in the other end of the cable to a PC or laptop, or even a USB mains adapter.  I have used the speaker and managed to get around 3 hours of continuous play from it before having to charge again.

This tiny speaker really does pack a punch when it comes to playing music.  No matter what style of music you choose to play, it comes through nice and clear, and with a decent amount of bass.  The hands-free feature just adds to this little box of awesome and makes using it an absolute pleasure.  You can pick up the PocketBoom Rechargeable Bluetooth Speaker in a wide range of colours and for the price of around £30.00 GBP.  An excellent product at an affordable price.

Mini Buddy Heart Portable Speaker – Review (@KitSoundUK)

Today for review, I have quite a cute item.  It’s a Mini Buddy Portable Speaker from the guys over at KitSound.  There are several different characters and designs available, and I have the Heart speaker to review.  Perfect timing with Valentine’s Day just around the corner.

The packaging for the Mini Buddy Heart Speaker is simple and shows you what you want to know.  It is just big enough to fit the speaker in, as well as the included USB charger cable.  The packaging is a clear plastic style that gives you a decent view of the speaker so that you can see the design fully.

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The speaker itself is actually really cute to look at.  It is a nice pink colour with a love heart pattern on the front which is made up of several small heart shapes.  On the side of the speaker there is a female 3.5mm port so that you can connect more than one together if you would like, while on the back is where the sound comes out, so naturally, there are several small holes for the speaker itself.  On the bottom of the buddy there is the power switch and a Micro USB port for the charger cable.  On the top, there is a short keychain that enables you to connect it up to your keys, which when coupled with the build quality of the speaker, you can feel assured that you can just throw it into your bag and not worry about causing any damage, etc.  Lastly, you have the 6 inch 3.5mm jack cable.

To get the speaker up and running, it couldn’t be easier – really.  Simply plug in the 3.5mm jack to the audio device that you want to use it with and you are good to go.  I plugged it into my phone and started up my music streaming app to test things out.  The sound quality was actually pretty good, especially considering the size of it.  The music I was playing came through nice and clear, and I didn’t notice any distortion.  I was able to enjoy my music listening session without feeling disappointed about my choice of speaker and the fact that you can actually hook up more of these little things together can only add to your listening pleasure.  Saying this, I was listening to music that didn’t contain a ridiculous amount of bass.

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Since first hooking up this buddy to charge when I took it out of the packaging, I haven’t had to charge it again, despite using it for a fair few hours.  This is something that has impressed me as I would hate to have to charge it over and over again after short uses.  One thing that is worth a mention – when charging, the LED indicator on the bottom of te buddy stays blue.  I think it may have been handy to have the LED colour change between charging and charged.

Overall, I think this Mini Buddy Hear Portable Speaker is cute, very well made, and very well priced.  You can pick up this speaker for £9.99 GBP from the KitSound website, as well as on Amazon UK.  With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, this would make an ideal gift for your love interest/significant other.

Mini Buddy Heart Portable Speaker – Review (@KitSoundUK)

Today for review, I have quite a cute item.  It’s a Mini Buddy Portable Speaker from the guys over at KitSound.  There are several different characters and designs available, and I have the Heart speaker to review.  Perfect timing with Valentine’s Day just around the corner.

The packaging for the Mini Buddy Heart Speaker is simple and shows you what you want to know.  It is just big enough to fit the speaker in, as well as the included USB charger cable.  The packaging is a clear plastic style that gives you a decent view of the speaker so that you can see the design fully.

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The speaker itself is actually really cute to look at.  It is a nice pink colour with a love heart pattern on the front which is made up of several small heart shapes.  On the side of the speaker there is a female 3.5mm port so that you can connect more than one together if you would like, while on the back is where the sound comes out, so naturally, there are several small holes for the speaker itself.  On the bottom of the buddy there is the power switch and a Micro USB port for the charger cable.  On the top, there is a short keychain that enables you to connect it up to your keys, which when coupled with the build quality of the speaker, you can feel assured that you can just throw it into your bag and not worry about causing any damage, etc.  Lastly, you have the 6 inch 3.5mm jack cable.

To get the speaker up and running, it couldn’t be easier – really.  Simply plug in the 3.5mm jack to the audio device that you want to use it with and you are good to go.  I plugged it into my phone and started up my music streaming app to test things out.  The sound quality was actually pretty good, especially considering the size of it.  The music I was playing came through nice and clear, and I didn’t notice any distortion.  I was able to enjoy my music listening session without feeling disappointed about my choice of speaker and the fact that you can actually hook up more of these little things together can only add to your listening pleasure.  Saying this, I was listening to music that didn’t contain a ridiculous amount of bass.

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Since first hooking up this buddy to charge when I took it out of the packaging, I haven’t had to charge it again, despite using it for a fair few hours.  This is something that has impressed me as I would hate to have to charge it over and over again after short uses.  One thing that is worth a mention – when charging, the LED indicator on the bottom of te buddy stays blue.  I think it may have been handy to have the LED colour change between charging and charged.

Overall, I think this Mini Buddy Hear Portable Speaker is cute, very well made, and very well priced.  You can pick up this speaker for £9.99 GBP from the KitSound website, as well as on Amazon UK.  With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, this would make an ideal gift for your love interest/significant other.

Sandberg PowerBar 2200mAh (Pink) with Flashlight – Review

Back up batteries are becoming a must have item nowadays, especially with so many people having and relying on gadgets that are battery powered.  There are plenty of products to choose from and today, I have the Sandberg PowerBar 2200mAh, complete with its own flashlight, for review.

The packaging that the PowerBar arrives in is pretty simplistic.  It shows you the PowerBar itself through the clear packaging at the front and in the bottom corner, there is a short bit of text about the product.  On the reverse of the box, there is a bit more info which is also available in several languages.  The bottom of the box shows you that there is a 5 year guarantee on the product.

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Removing the PowerBar from the box is as simple as open the top of the box and sliding out the plastic sleeve that houses the product.  Also included in the box is a Micro USB cable which is used to charge the device, and a small instruction leaflet.  The PowerBar itself has nicely curved corners and measures in at 9.3 cm in length and 2.10 cm in width, and weighs around 75g – definitely small enough to be carried around with you while out and about.  Along one of the sides, you will find the Sandberg logo, a silver button and 3 LED lights.  The button is for the flashlight – double click to turn it on and double click to turn it off again.  I haven’t had a reason to use this too much yet, but what I have used, it could prove handy.  The LED lights show the battery level and come on when you press the silver button once.

Charging the device prior to its first use was really straightforward,  It was simply a case of connecting the USB cable to the PC and also to the PowerBar.  Once connected up, charging started immediately – no need to install any drivers.  While charging the LED lights flashed, and once fully charged, the flashing stopped.  It was just as simple to use when I wanted to charge my phone also.  I simply hooked up my charger cable to the PowerBar and connected it to my phone and charging began.  It managed to charge my phone around 45% after a 30 minute charge.  It could have charged it more if I wasn’t using my phone at the same time.  I have only had to charge the device once since receiving it last week, so it seems like the battery life will be sufficient for most people.

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Overall, I am very impressed with the PowerBar.  It does what it should, when it should, and is small enough to be portable.  The metallic effect to the pink colouring makes the device stand out even more and doesn’t look out of place.  This can be used with many devices – pretty much any that can be charged via USB cable.  For the price of between £12.00 & £17.00 GBP (varies with colour choice) on Amazon UK, I think that this is a handy accessory to have, even if as a ‘just in case’.