Friday, September 09, 2011

Kathy's Konsumer Korner (v.1)

I wanted to share some of my new technology gadget finds (okay, purchases) with you. Perhaps they might meet a need for you or for another tech geek in your life!

 ZuniConnect Travel Router (Zuni Digital)

This tiny 802.11n router (3.86" x 2.37"x 0.65") allows you to hook to a wired connection and create a wireless access point or it allows you to hook to an existing wireless connection and create a wireless hotspot for other devices to connect to. The ZuniConnect includes two USB charging ports, too, and comes in a study case with a tiny Ethernet cable and the AC adapter. (Amazon $49.95)

iHome IB969G Charging Station (iHome)

I have lots of gadgets and also need more desk space. This charging station includes a single iOS sync/charge connection, an iOS charge-only connection, and two USB ports to charge two other devices. The front pulls open to hold an ereader or other small tablet. It is perfect for holding my iPhone, iPod Nano, Kindle, and iPad. (I still hook to a USB port on my computer for the iPad since I want to sync and charge. I use the second charging port for my Garmin GPS). One downside is that the weight of the iPad makes the station a bit tippy, but I you can just weigh down the front underneath and all should be fine! You may have to buy inserts for the iOS charging docks if the device you have needs a different one.  (Amazon $44.24)

Nikon Coolpix S6100 Touchscreen Digital Camera (Nikon)

I admit it. I love Nikon cameras. I have a Nikon DSLR, the Nikon P7000 midsize, and now have the Nikon Coolpix S6100 as my point and shoot. I had been playing with this camera at the store for a while. I was first attracted by the 7X optical zoom (28-196) and also by the ease of use a touchscreen provides. It has vibration reduction, a motion sensor to allow you take moving photos with less blurring, and even has a Best Shot Selector which take ten shots and picks the sharpest image for you. There is a Smile Timer which does not take the photo until the subject smiles and an in-camera Red-Eye fix. But, the touchscreen is the best feature. No dials to turn or joysticks to wiggle and it takes no time at all to learn how to use it! Oh, and it takes good pictures, too! (Amazon $164.00)

Video Capture for Mac (Elgato)

I had some videotapes I wanted to transfer to my iMac and I mistakenly thought I could do video-in to my camcorder. I searched for various solutions, and came up with the Elgato Video capture for Mac. One end is a USB connection and the other end includes S-video, composite video, and two audio connections. I know that S-video and composite are not at the top of the heap of video quality, but ease-of-use trumped video quality for me. (And the quality was just fine, by the way!) The ability to put recorded videotapes into our one remaining VCR and hook up the Elgato to the video and audio-out jacks of the VCR and record directly into the computer was great! You can record in both MPEG-4 and H.264 formats. (Amazon $77.99)

That wraps it up for this edition of Kathy's Konsumer Korner! Let me know about new things you have found in the comments!