Regular readers of this blog may have noticed I'm not a big fan of any type of wireless speaker, and more specifically I have no love for Bluetooth or AirPlay speakers. For me the sound compromises that come with compact size and wireless technology are hard to swallow. I have less of a grudge against the smaller, under-$200 models; they produce "good enough" sound, but the more expensive models' sound pales next to a pair of wired Adam Audio, Audioengine, or Emotiva self-powered speakers.
A new pair of headphones is the best way to get everyone to notice your impeccable taste in fashion and design. Take a look around any metropolitan area and you'll see the colors of the rainbow perched on people's heads. Too many of today's models, though, sacrifice sound quality for sartorial flair.
AKG's latest K545, K845BT, and K323XS headphones challenge shoppers to demand excellence in both with three flavors for wired, wireless, and earbud options.
The K545 is arguably the least exciting of the three, though it's likely your best bet if you're shopping … Read more
The Jawbone Jambox became one of the first big-name portable Bluetooth speakers when it debuted in 2011. Jawbone supersized it the following year and introduced the larger, more expensive Big Jambox. And now the company is going the other way: the new Mini Jambox is, as you can guess, a Bluetooth speaker that's about half the size as the original. In fact, the $179 rechargeable isn't much larger than an iPhone.
In addition to its tiny size -- the Mini is just 58mm by 154mm by 24.5mm (HWD) and tips the scales at a mere 9 ounces … Read more
When it comes to speaker design, the world of hi-fi audio can get pretty outlandish. Beyond the basic rectangle, you have speakers that look like pyramids, spheres, wavy towers, and flat planes.
But until now, there hasn't been one that looks like a traveler's coffee mug.
iCreation's SpeeCup is more than just a speaker. The 8.5-inch-tall casing also contains Bluetooth hardware, integrated play controls, and a battery with 20 hours of charge. The battery helps the SpeeCup's portability: I could use it in my car, then take it into a hotel or use it in … Read more
Most speaker docks are exactly that: a speaker designed to accommodate your smartphone (and occasionally your tablet) for both charging and music listening.
If you want to keep your device close at hand, however, you need a Bluetooth speaker -- but then you lose out on a place to recharge.
So why can't a speaker offer both capabilities? Surprisingly few do, but today's deal does: For a limited time, and while supplies last, StackSocial has the Soundfreaq Sound Step Recharge wireless speaker dock for $99.74 shipped. That's after applying coupon code CSKATE-5 at checkout. That's … Read more
Like free stuff? Of course you do! Otherwise you wouldn't be here.
Do you also like cool audio gear? Duh, who doesn't!
Well, cheeps, you've come to the right place. Your friendly neighborhood Cheapskate has joined up with Accessory Genie to offer an exclusive Back to School Giveaway. All you have to do is leave a comment (see the rules below, followed by an extra-special bonus deal) and you're entered to win a mighty sweet bundle of audio goodies.
Here's … Read more
Sure, your mouse is an integral part of the computing experience, but what has it done for you lately?
Probably just moved your cursor around. Slacker! For a limited time, and while supplies last, Over Half Sale has the Aerb Wireless Bluetooth Mouse with speaker for $29.99 shipped. That's after applying coupon code CNET15 at checkout. This vocal rodent normally sells for $44.99.
I know: crazy gizmo, right? But maybe not so crazy. For starters, it's a Bluetooth mouse, offering one less bit of cord clutter on your work surface (except when you're charging it, … Read more
Mrs. Cheapskate's minivan doesn't have Bluetooth. I don't even have a line-in jack. I know: the horror! Thankfully, there are gizmos that can bridge the gap between smartphone and car stereo, thus making it possible to enjoy playlists, Pandora, audiobooks, and other audio treats.
And one of the best such gizmos is now available at a Cheapskate-exclusive discount. Through Wednesday, you can get the Accessory Genie GoGroove FlexSmart X3 Bluetooth FM Transmitter for $44.99 shipped when you apply coupon code FLEX3 at checkout. Regular price: $59.99.
Like its predecessor, the FlexSmart X2, the X3 plugs … Read more
Last year, Casio G-Shock dipped a toe into the smartwatch arena with two Bluetooth models, the GB-5600AA and GB-6900AA ($199), that communicated with your smartphone and offered some limited notification features when an e-mail or call came in.
The new GB-6900B, modeled after the "classic" G-Shock DW-6900, and the larger GB-X6900B, up the Bluetooth ante a bit, with a version 2.0 "engine" that adds "two-way" communications with a smartphone. That allows you to program your G-Shock's buttons to operate smartphone applications such as music playback. You can also use your smartphone to … Read more