Gadget review and quick top list

1. LG HU80KA 4K UHD Projector

Why spend your whole salary on a big screen TV when you can get 150 inches, in 4K, for a lot less? That’s the promise of projectors, which have come a long way in terms of quality and complications. Gone are the days when you needed an elaborate, pricey, custom setup on your wall or ceiling. LG’s distinct upright model can project up to 150 inches right from the floor, and blast sound from two built-in speakers, but then be easily hidden away to blend in nicely next to your side table or taken to any other room thanks to a built-in handle. Connect it to your computer, smartphone, or home theater system via HDMI, or stream 4K content directly via Ethernet.

Price TBD.

 

2. Sony WF-SP700N Truly Wireless Earbuds

“Wireless” earbuds that nevertheless connect to each other via a cord never don’t quite cut the cord enough to rescue you from treadmill flailing arm mishaps, but Bluetooth audio quality and battery life have improved so much in the past two years that there are now many fully cable-free models to choose from. Case in point: The sleek, two-toned WF-SP700N from Sony offer solid, adjustable bass, active noise canceling, and (soon) Google Assistant capability, but are also sweat-proof, making them ideal for listening to your own music or taking calls during workouts at the gym no matter how loudly and relentlessly the EDM beats are blasting. (And they come in four colors.)

                                                                                                                         

 

[$179.99, sony.com]

 

 

3. Humon Hex

Algorithms are only as good as the data that is fed into them, and the proliferation of new ways (i.e. sensors) to capture information is part of what’s fueling today’s AI boom. One area ripe for disruption is the activity tracker space, where heart rate has been the de facto metric for everyone from runners to cyclists to hikers for the past few years. But heart rate doesn’t tell you the whole story. Developed by a team at MIT, Humon’s technology goes deeper and more specific by analyzing the way any muscle you can wrap the watch-like Hex wearable around uses oxygen. The device’s special optical sensors shine light into your skin and measure the way it’s absorbed by your muscle to calculate oxygen consumption, then makes real-time exercise recommendations accordingly via the connected smartphone app. It’s localized measurement, which means you can put it on your triceps while you’re doing pushups or around your glutes while you’re cycling to maximize for the muscles you’re actually using.

[$295, humon.io]

 

3. Quartz Bottle

 

Making water safe to drink while camping has mostly involved tablets and pumps, but why add chemicals that can alter the taste of your liquid refreshment when a more effective process, previously only available for home purifiers, is now available in portable form?  Quartz’s 18 oz., double-walled bottle uses UV light to eliminate up to 99.9999 percent of bacteria in just one minute. Available in the spring in five different colors, the bottle’s battery lasts three months and can disinfect up to 300 individual fillings on a single charge.

[$99, clearlyquartz.com]

 

 

New features and design

The best dry bag for packing in large amounts of outdoor gear.

 

There’s no getting around it: wet clothing and utterly soaked outdoor gear (that’s not meant to get wet) sucks. There’s no excuse for it, either. Not when you have one of the best dry bags in the outdoors for protecting your kit, whatever you’re getting up to out there in the wild.

Yes, whether you’re canoeing, kayaking, mountaineering, abseiling down waterfalls or trekking across streams and rivers in the pouring rain, these dry sacks and bags will protect your gadgets and clothes from water.

Yes, whether you’re canoeing, kayaking, mountaineering, abseiling down waterfalls or trekking across streams and rivers in the pouring rain, these dry sacks and bags will protect your gadgets and clothes from water. How to’s

The two main consideration points you’re likely to encounter in your quest to find the best dry bag for you are material and closure type. When it comes to the former, you’ll tend to see a lot of vinyl. And we’re not talking the kind you spin on a turntable…

Vinyl is generally used for smaller, packable dry bags that can be stowed inside larger bags. There’s also nylon, which is a little sturdier in the face of water, plus scrapes from rock and debris.

Closure types basically come down to either zipper seals or roll-tops, both of which are pretty self-explanatory.

Our current top pick for the best dry bag is the

To learn more about the Boundary Pack, and to pick up a few extra recommendations, check out our guide to the best dry bags of the year…

SEALLINE BOUNDARY PORTAGE PACK 115L

SPECIFICATIONS
Best for: Heavy loads
Material: PVC-free PU-coated polyester, scrim-reinforced urethane
Closure: Roll-top
Volume: 115L
REASONS TO BUY
+Lateral pull straps for compression+Ventilated shoulder straps+Superb storage options
REASONS TO AVOID
Bulbous anchor point

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8.5 Total Score
Excellent!

We absolutely love this bag. This was excellent for all of our storage options. Easy to use pull straps made with polyester.

Design
8
Usability
8.5
Perfomance
9
Price
8.5
PROS
  • Great for family outings on the water. We were able to pack a lot of items that were valuable and needed keep clear of the water.
CONS
  • Not very comfortable for long strenuous hikes and travel.
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