- 48 kHz audio resolution
- Mac, PC or iOS compatible
- Single Combo Crystal Preamp with phantom power
- Switchable Line / Instrument input for guitar or microphone.
- 2-channel recording - use both line inputs simultaneously
- Powered by USB
- Zero-latency monitoring of the input signal through both the main RCA outputs and 1/8” headphone outputs
- USB/Direct switch adjusts the balance between the direct inputs and playback from computer software.
Monday, 9 May 2022
Wednesday, 4 May 2022
Monday, 2 May 2022
I finally got round to trying Endeavour Linux on one of my laptops, a Dell Latitude E6500. I have read good things about Endeavour, it often tops "best Arch based distro" lists and has some neat features. Things started out well with the installer working very well, choose a desktop to install and it gets on with it very quickly and efficiently. Upon first boot you are greeted with the Welcome Launcher with its useful tasks and suggestions....
Tuesday, 18 January 2022
My old small foldable headphones recently stopped working properly, and they were getting tatty, so I quickly looked for a suitable replacement set. These 6S foldable headphones were highly rated on Amazon so I went for them. I chose them as they have USB C charging, wired and Bluetooth (5.0) modes and were cheap at just 22 quid. They can also play music from an SD/TF card of up to 32GB, and have an FM tuner too, though I doubt I will use that. They have a claimed playing time of 10 to 12 hours. My pair are black and gold but they're also available in other colours.
Upon unboxing, it took me a few moments to find the USB C port, it's discreetly placed on the side of the left headphone can. Inside the box there is a small instruction manual, a USB C lead and a reasonably long 3.5mm jack-to-jack audio lead (with inline button) to use them in wired mode. Being USB C, I can also charge them with my phone charger, which is handy, as it means I only have to carry one charger with me.
On the left can they have the Power button, Play/Pause/Call Control button, 'M' button (short press to change EQ mode, long press to switch between Bluetooth, FM and SD/TF card) and forward and back buttons. The SD/TF card slot is on the shoulder of the can and the headphone jack on the base of it.
The 6S fold up to a fairly compact size. Not sure how long the hinges will last, they open and close with a hard click sound each time.
They are fairly comfortable to wear for an hour or two, but the only adjustment is the sliders for the band on them, so it may not suit everyone, and they really could do with a bit more padding at the top where it sits on your head. Wearing a hat underneath them might be a good idea...
When you turn them on for the first time they go into pairing mode and they pair just like any other Bluetooth headphones. I had no issues pairing them to my Pixel 4a. A voice announces "power on" and "power off".
They have plenty of bass and are very loud, both in Bluetooth and wired modes, which is great. In wired mode they are louder than my budget JBL cans that I use on my workstation PCs. Even when not playing music the shape of them blocks out other sound to a certain extent.
So, overall these are a reasonably decent set of foldable Bluetooth headphones that have a bonus of wired and SD card modes too. Decent enough sound quality, plenty of bass and also nice and loud! They fold up to a handy size and can be used wired if the battery runs out while I am out. And I can charge them with a USB C lead and portable battery pack if I want to. For £22 on Amazon, they're worth keeping in my rucksack for when they're needed.
Sunday, 16 January 2022
I have always been a portable gaming fan. My first console was a Nintendo GameBoy and I loved it. From GameBoy to GameBoy Color to GameBoy Advance and then to the amazing Nintendo DS Lite. The DS range brought a new era of gaming to the handheld market. Over the years I have owned multiple Nintendo DS Lite consoles and it is by far the platform I have used the most over the past 15+ years. I have owned several Sony PSPs and a PS Vita – but the DS line is where my love is.
After realising just how expensive the PS Vita and games where I decided to part with it and buy a Nintendo 3DS and it was a fantastic decision. Over the past 18 months my passion and collection has grown immensely.
The Nintendo 3DS is a fantastic console with its increased hardware and new range of games it offers so much more than the DS range. Don’t get me wrong I love the DS games, but its hardware – in true Nintendo style – isn’t there to be a powerhouse, instead to be a handheld with amazing battery life. It is predominantly a 2D console although it does have some impressive 3D titles (such as Dementium, COP The Recruit and Metroid Prime Hunters). Plus the Nintendo 3DS is backward compatible with DS games – making it an awesome console.
The Nintendo 3DS introduced the Circle Pad but it only had one, making 3D games and first person shooters difficult to play. This was rectified with the ‘New’ range which added a second pad in the form of the C-Stick, and I bought a New Nintendo 2DS XL. It has all the features of the new range, just without the stereoscopic 3D – plus it has the larger screens.
The New Nintendo 2DS XL is a fantastic console, which not only added new buttons but also drastically increased processing power, system RAM and video RAM and it easily my best console.
But that doesn’t mean I have abandoned older models. Recently I bought my wife a Nintendo DSi XL as she wanted a handheld console with larger screens and I fell in love with it. Shortly after I picked up a regular Nintendo DSi – a console I hadn’t seen the point in before as it didn’t offer that much over the Nintendo DS Lite, however the small changes it did bring make it a better gaming experience, especially these days.
And finally – for now – I purchased a console I have wanted for a long time, the original Nintendo DS, the ‘phat’ model that started it all. I have no need for one, I have plenty of other DS consoles I could play on, but I just wanted an original model to add to my collection, to sit on my shelf and look good.
I am considering looking out for a an original Nintendo 2DS – the wedge shaped one – or a New Nintendo 3DS just to add further to my collection, but only if I can find them at a decent price.
My YouTube channel is dedicated to portable and older gaming – as well as other tech – and it has become a hub for all my DS content over the last year or so.
The Nintendo DS range – with all its variants – is where I love to be. I spend just as much time talking about and creating video about as I do playing on this wonderful range of portable consoles.
Written by Simon Royal. Follow me at twitter.com/simonroyal
Saturday, 15 January 2022
I have had a love hate relationship with wireless earphones for a long time. I love the idea of them, but being small the batteries aren’t big meaning battery life isn’t great. I don’t like going out only to find the battery has run out.
However, wired earphones aren’t always practical, the cable gets caught on things or gets tangled in clothing.
So I bought some Goodmans True Wireless Earphones Pro from my local B&M Store. At £15 for a recognised brand I thought it was worth a look – and the specs looked pretty decent.
Like most mini wireless ‘stick’ earphones they come in their own charging case – charging the case rather than the earphones themselves. So I opened the box, popped the earphones in the case and started charging them. They use USB-C which I was pleased to see.
The build quality seems good for both the earphones and case. The earphones seem a little chunky, but fit in my ears well and are comfortable. I suppose the size is to accommodate the 40mAh battery in them, which should last 5 hours on a single charge.
The box states 20 hours, but that is with the case. When you have finished or if they run out of battery you pop the earphone back in the case and it charges them for you – given that the case has a 300mAh battery the case should charge the earphones two or three times. This is great if you are out and need to charge them.
The other thing I like about them is, if you use both they automatically sync to each other and can be used as a pair. However, you can use one at a time – popping just one back in the case will turn it off and start charging it – while allowing you to use the other one.
Pairing was easy. I just set my phone to search and it picked them up straight away. Sound quality is pretty decent too, with great volume and a good amount of bass. Listening to music through them was a joy.
Call quality was a mixed bag. On my first call the recipient struggled to hear me – however I was beside a busy road, with a covid mask on and a beanie hat over them. Further calls inside my house had no issues.
You can also use them for your voice assistant. I know they aren’t going to be the best – but I didn’t fancy spending fortune. I have seen others brands and models priced at up to £180.
I have been very impressed. I like the audio quality, I like the battery life and I like the way they are charged in the case. For the price I think they are great value for money.
Written by Simon Royal. Follow me at twitter.com/simonroyal