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Christmas 2023 Product Reviews

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Today we are looking at specialist waterproof headphones with built in media storage, the next generation of encrypted USB-C thumb drives, smart home air purifiers and an upgraded home security camera, so let’s get started!

Yi Home Pro 2K Home security camera

This is the upgraded, 2K version of the Yi Home 1080p security camera I reviewed here but the upgraded 2304 x 1296 resolution makes a huge difference in use. Of particular note is the very good Enhanced Night Vision which, when activated, enables 940-nm infrared lights, a high-sensitivity image sensor and an F1.9 large aperture lens. This excellent feature captures detailed images even in very low-light conditions.

It is important to note that this product is sold in the anticipation you will sign up to their Kami Cloud subscription plan – full details here – which as well as storing your security footing off-site in the cloud, enables their Smart AI Detection system which can distinguish Person, Vehicle, or Animal accurately and reduce false alarms significantly.

Kami Cloud offers loop recording with no storage limit, so even if your YI Home Camera is stolen or damaged, your footage will still be secure and accessible on the cloud. Download the YI Home App PC/Mac client and view up to 4 live camera feeds on one screen, wherever you are.

Keep track of what’s happening in every room of your house or small business, and rest assured that you won’t miss anything. It is important to point out that the YI Home camera is only compatible with a 2.4GHz band network, 5GHz networks are not supported.

If you don’t want the subscription this is still a very usable device and you can store your data and recordings locally with an extra Micro SD card (not included). Accessing the SD card remotely via the Yi Home app on your iPhone or Android device is a cinch and the motion detection alerts work very well. You can also use the app to schedule the camera’s actions and set Home or Away presets.

This camera is also compatible With Alexa and Google Assistant. You can use your voice to turn on YI camera for home security or view your camera live stream on Echo Show or any screen-based Alexa device or Google Chrome Cast. This is not a battery-powered camera so it can only be placed around the home within reach of a power socket but the included micro USB power cable is pretty long. If you don’t want to put a Micro SD in your camera you can try Kami Cloud on a one-month free trial accessed via the app once you set up a new Yi device.

Available at the time of publishing on Amazon.com for a reduced $19.99


iStorage datAshur PRO+C USB

I have reviewed several excellent encrypted drives from iStorage before and this is the latest and fastest of their PIN-protected, hardware-encrypted, flash drives, now with USB Type-C connectivity and speed. The iStorage datAshur PRO+C is a user-friendly USB 3.2 (Gen 1) Type-C flash drive that combines ease of use with top-level security measures. It employs PIN protection and hardware encryption to safeguard your data to military-grade standards and comes with a neat USB Type-A adapter.

Available in various capacities ranging from 32GB to 512GB, this innovative device ensures your information remains secure. Additionally, the datAshur PRO+C holds the distinction of being the world’s sole flash drive awaiting validation for FIPS 140-3 Level 3 certification. The drive’s advanced security features and AES-XTS 256-bit full disk hardware encryption provide complete data security and guarantee maximum protection of your data at all times.

The design of the datAshur PRO+C flash drive includes a rugged extruded aluminium sleeve that is dust and water resistant to IP57 rating, and crush-resistant which protects your drive from physical damage whilst keeping your data ultra-secure.

Built into the drive is a rechargeable battery, allowing the user to enter an 8-15 digit PIN via the on-board keypad before connecting the device to a USB port, this is a huge deal for those working across many devices or in server rooms. All critical components are covered by a layer of super tough epoxy resin to protect the internals and on-device crypto chip from impacts or tampering.

The datAshur PRO+C cannot be accessed without the user’s unique PIN, giving users peace of mind that their data is safe from prying eyes if their drive is lost or stolen, as without the PIN, there’s no way IN! The easy-to-use keypad is polymer-coated for wear resistance.

Government accreditations – The datAshur PRO+C is the world’s first and only flash drive pending the new FIPS 140-3 Level 3 validation scheme.

The drive is intelligently programmed to protect against all forms of brute-force attacks. If the user PIN (8-15 digits) is entered incorrectly 10 consecutive times then the user PIN will be deleted. All your data will remain on the device but now you can only access it by entering the admin PIN. However, if you enter the admin PIN incorrectly 10 consecutive times, the PIN, encryption key, and data will be lost forever. The device will revert to factory default settings and will need to be formatted before use. So….. don’t forget your pin!

Transfer your files in seconds via the lightning-fast, backwards-compatible USB 3.2 (Gen1) connector. Quoted data transfer speeds are 310MB/s Read & 246MB/s Write but under my testing, I received 270MB/s reads and 205MB/s writes via USB-C and 38MB/s reads and 35MB/s writes via the included USB 3 Type-A adaptor. These are very respectable speeds and are the fastest I have ever tested on a similar encrypted flash drive! Well done iStorage, this is a big step forward.

With no software required this drive is cross-platform compatible with MS Windows, macOS, Linux, Android, Chrome, Thin Clients, Zero Clients, Embedded Systems, Citrix, VMware, DVR’s, Medical Equipment, Printers, Scanners, CCTV. In fact, it will work on any device with a USB port! I tested this and yes it is true, quite incredible flexibility! The datAshur PRO+C comes in 32 GB, 128 GB, 256 GB and 512 GB capacities, only weighs 25 grams and fits comfortably onto a pocket keychain and comes with a 3-year warranty with free lifetime technical support. Oh, and you can boot your operating system from the drive!

What are you waiting for? Pick one up here from $129 for 32GB


Nank (Naenka) Runner Diver2 Professional Sports Headphones

These are the new upgraded version of the popular Nank (previously Naenka) Runner Diver waterproof sports headphones, delivering significant performance enhancements. They boast a lighter weight, enhanced waterproofing, increased song storage capacity, and superior audio quality.

With these remarkable upgrades, Runner Diver2 provides an exceptional audio experience, catering to your heightened demands for sound quality and sports functionality.

Their cunning design features advanced bone conduction technology, delivering audio through contact with the cheekbone instead of the air via your eardrums. Bone conduction technology offers a good quality audio experience while keeping you connected and aware of your surroundings, especially important for outdoor sports such as cycling. I found these headphones worked very well indeed and I didn’t need to use the included ‘sound quality enhancing’ ear plugs to get an enjoyable sound. I would have liked a little more balanced bass but most smartphone music apps include an EQ tool so you can always boost the bass a bit via a connected device.

These professional waterproof headphones use magnetic fast charging technology and can be fully charged in 1.5 hours.

Sound quality via the internal storage, playing a good quality FLAC file was surprisingly good and any lack in bass is far outweighed by the convenience of not needing a Bluetooth-connected device while running or swimming. It is a very usable sound indeed! Upgrades include 32GB of internal storage, Bluetooth 5.3, noise cancellation, and the music player now supports more file formats including MP3/M4A/WAV/APE/FLAC plus customers can now choose sequential or random playback. The Runner Diver2 boasts IP68 waterproof capability and has been subjected to rigorous underwater testing, delivering reliable playback for underwater enthusiasts.

Connect to a computer via the magnetic charging cable, load up your favourite music and dive into your workout. The 32GB of built-in music storage, holds up to 4800 songs in MP3/M4A/WAV/APE/FLAC formats.

Music can be loaded onto the headphones via the USB cable and its magnetic fast charging port. Simply connect it to your computer and drag & drop your music files to the device and enjoy tunes while swimming, exercising in the gym, running, jogging or cycling with no need for a second connected Bluetooth device. I tested connectivity with a MacBook and it was seamless, just remember to eject the headphones like any other USB drive after copying music across.

Runner Diver2’s weight has been reduced to 32g, with an overall design that is more lightweight and comfortable for longer wear times plus battery life is now 10 hours at 60% volume, The headphones fit with your cycling glasses and helmet perfectly, and the design keeps you in touch with your surroundings plus is less affected by wind noise than traditional in-ear headphones. I found them super comfortable even while wearing my glasses and light enough to forget they are on!

These Bluetooth headphones have exclusive OT leakage reduction 3.0 technology, less vibration, and are more comfortable to wear. Seamless and non-porous design, reduces sound leakage by 90% and protects your privacy.

Bluetooth 5.3 connectivity offers convenient multipoint pairing compatible with your iOS and Android devices. They pair with smartphones, tablets, Mac and PC computers and laptops. Triple-click the power button to switch from Bluetooth to internal playback mode. A 16mm dynamic vibrator speaker ensures the sound quality is more open, the bass is thick and the mid-to-treble is solid with more power.

Grab a pair here for a $149.99


Sensibo Pure – Smart Air Purifier

In today’s world, where pollution levels are skyrocketing, wildfire smoke is a regular visitor to our homes and allergens are ever-present, ensuring clean and healthy indoor air has become a concern for many and for those with respiratory conditions, allergies, or weakened immune systems, a necessity. Among the many air purifiers options available, Sensibo Pure air purifiers stand out for their good design, advanced technology and exceptional performance thanks to True HEPA filters.

The Sensibo Pure boasts a smart pollution sensor and LED light that changes color when your air quality is poor, an auto fan function & built in timer, a highly rated mobile app and the ability to track various pollutants. The app can provide hourly data, and extended historical views as well as live alerts when pollution levels are reaching higher levels.

Sensibo PureBoost technology makes the Sensibo Pure the smartest air purifier on the market. By activating PureBoost the Sensibo Pure will turn on your AC fan when pollution levels are high to increase airflow and purify more air by increasing circulation.

For more features you can sign up for Sensibo Plus, their cloud subscription service and enjoy advanced user management, outdoor location-based weather and pollution updates and Sensibo’s PureBoost tech which can connect and manage multiple Sensibo devices throughout your home regulating and boosting air filtration based in interior and outdoor air quality measurements. It also now features ChatGPT AI scheduling suggestions based on your usage. Very 2023!

Sensibo Pure Air Purifiers are equipped with advanced sensors that detect changes in air quality, including the presence of harmful particles and volatile organic compounds (VOCs). The purifiers automatically adjust their purification levels based on the detected air quality, ensuring optimal performance at all times.

As well as being smart, the filters on these are great, Sensibo Pure air purifiers utilize a multi-stage high-efficiency filtration system, which includes a pre-filter, a True HEPA filter, and an activated carbon filter. Standing for high efficiency particulate air, HEPA technology uses a fiberglass filter that traps particles of a certain size out of the air. Air purifiers work by capturing and filtering out these pollutants, improving the overall indoor air quality and creating a healthier environment.

By removing harmful particles from the air, air purifiers can help alleviate symptoms and create a more comfortable living space. This comprehensive filtration process can effectively capture and eliminate up to 99.97% of airborne particles as small as 0.3 microns, including dust, pollen, pet dander, mold spores, and even certain bacteria and viruses.

Use PureBoost to connect other Sensibo devices within your home, creating a multi-sensor ecosystem that allows Sensibo’s on-board AI to take control of your indoor air quality. For those suffering from allergies, PureBoost allows you to customize your sensitivity settings, so PureBoost can activate before your immune system. You’ll see the difference in no time!

With built-in Wi-Fi connectivity and the Sensibo mobile app, these air purifiers offer convenient remote control and monitoring capabilities. You can easily adjust settings, schedule operation times, and monitor your home’s air quality in real-time, all from the convenience of your smartphone. The Sensibo Pure also connects to most popular voice assistants Amazon Echo, Google Home & Apple HomeKit. Now you can activate your air purifier with a voice command.

These units are attractive, easy to use and use very good quality filters. You can grab one here for $129 inc. a 40% discount at the time of publishing.