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Andre Lawrence (Miami, Florida)
(TOP 50 REVIEWER)   

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars CTA Gooseneck Floor Stand (2014): A Critical Review, Jan. 31 2014
Length:: 2:12 Mins

CTA Boom Floor Stand (2014): A Critical Review
CTA Gooseneck Floor Stand (2014): A Critical Review
CTA Gooseneck Clamp Mount (2014): A Critical Review

If you’re unfamiliar with CTA, they’re a fairly new electronics accessories company out of Brooklyn, NY.

They design accessories and some may call, furniture, for mobile devices: primarily the iPad, iPad Mini and similarly designed tablet devices.

CTA’s products kind of remind me of IKEA, part functional, part whimsical. Sturdy materials with big, bright splashes of color on certain items and traditional (conservative) yet functional designs on other items.

My sister loves their iPad Potty for her two young sons….yeah, ah, not gonna try to figure out how someone thought of that one.

*** The Boom Floor Stand ***

The Boom Floor Stand is one of 3 new stands that they’ve just introduced and is a revision of the last model (2011-2012).

The BFS is made out of lightweight but strong aluminum frame.

The set comes with:

1- Boom Floor Stand
1- Holder the iPad
1- Holder for 7-10” tablets
1 bag of screws and accessories

Assembly time: 10 minutes (video is sped up)

* The rotating holder can rotate at a 360-degree angle.
* Head pivots at a viewing angle of 180-degrees horizontally and 80-degrees vertically.

The height range: 12” (1’) to 42” (3.5’)

See video for ease of assembly.

Grade: A

*** The Gooseneck Floor Stand ***

The Gooseneck Floor Stand is another exceptional stand that CTA produced and is an alternative to the Boom Floor Stand.

Like the BFS, the Gooseneck Floor Stand is requires about 10 minutes to assemble and has all of the tools you need included.

The big difference here is that the Gooseneck has an adjustable neck that allows you to bring the tablet down to a comfortable reading level at any angle.

The set comes with:

1- Height-adjustable Floor stand
1- Gooseneck (flexible)
1- iPad holder
1 bag of accessories

The Floor stand is aluminum
The Gooseneck, iPad holder is a iron
The accessories (covers) are plastic

And, another nice thing about both the GFS and the BFS, they take up very little space on their own. If necessary, you don’t have to fully disassemble them to put them away.

See video for ease of assembly.
(Grade: A)

*** The Gooseneck Clamp Mount ***

This is the biggest surprise of the three (3) new tablet holders that I found from CTA.

The last design was, in my humble opinion, a disaster. This—This Gooseneck Clamp Mount is excellent.

It took all of about 90 seconds to remove it from the box, find an appropriate spot on a table and fasten the clamp.

It can’t get more simpler than that.

The design is so minimalistic that you can actually transport this clamp to almost any environment that you can use your iPad or other 10” tablet device: home, office, dorm, park bench, McDonald’s (make sure you get some fries with that).

Better design, better materials. Definitely worth the money.

Grade: A+… 5 very, very big stars.

CTA DIGITAL Boom Floor Stand for iPad 2/3/4, iPad Air, iPad mini, Nexus, Samsung Galaxy and Most 7-10-Inch Tablets (PAD-BFS)
CTA DIGITAL Boom Floor Stand for iPad 2/3/4, iPad Air, iPad mini, Nexus, Samsung Galaxy and Most 7-10-Inch Tablets (PAD-BFS)
Price: CDN$ 93.49
11 used & new from CDN$ 39.13

5.0 out of 5 stars CTA Boom Floor Stand (2014): A Critical Review, Jan. 31 2014
Length:: 1:48 Mins

CTA Boom Floor Stand (2014): A Critical Review
CTA Gooseneck Floor Stand (2014): A Critical Review
CTA Gooseneck Clamp Mount (2014): A Critical Review

If you’re unfamiliar with CTA, they’re a fairly new electronics accessories company out of Brooklyn, NY.

They design accessories and some may call, furniture, for mobile devices: primarily the iPad, iPad Mini and similarly designed tablet devices.

CTA’s products kind of remind me of IKEA, part functional, part whimsical. Sturdy materials with big, bright splashes of color on certain items and traditional (conservative) yet functional designs on other items.

My sister loves their iPad Potty for her two young sons….yeah, ah, not gonna try to figure out how someone thought of that one.

*** The Boom Floor Stand ***

The Boom Floor Stand is one of 3 new stands that they’ve just introduced and is a revision of the last model (2011-2012).

The BFS is made out of lightweight but strong aluminum frame.

The set comes with:

1- Boom Floor Stand
1- Holder the iPad
1- Holder for 7-10” tablets
1 bag of screws and accessories

Assembly time: 10 minutes (video is sped up)

* The rotating holder can rotate at a 360-degree angle.
* Head pivots at a viewing angle of 180-degrees horizontally and 80-degrees vertically.

The height range: 12” (1’) to 42” (3.5’)

See video for ease of assembly.

Grade: A

*** The Gooseneck Floor Stand ***

The Gooseneck Floor Stand is another exceptional stand that CTA produced and is an alternative to the Boom Floor Stand.

Like the BFS, the Gooseneck Floor Stand is requires about 10 minutes to assemble and has all of the tools you need included.

The big difference here is that the Gooseneck has an adjustable neck that allows you to bring the tablet down to a comfortable reading level at any angle.

The set comes with:

1- Height-adjustable Floor stand
1- Gooseneck (flexible)
1- iPad holder
1 bag of accessories

The Floor stand is aluminum
The Gooseneck, iPad holder is a iron
The accessories (covers) are plastic

And, another nice thing about both the GFS and the BFS, they take up very little space on their own. If necessary, you don’t have to fully disassemble them to put them away.

See video for ease of assembly.
(Grade: A)

*** The Gooseneck Clamp Mount ***

This is the biggest surprise of the three (3) new tablet holders that I found from CTA.

The last design was, in my humble opinion, a disaster. This—This Gooseneck Clamp Mount is excellent.

It took all of about 90 seconds to remove it from the box, find an appropriate spot on a table and fasten the clamp.

It can’t get more simpler than that.

The design is so minimalistic that you can actually transport this clamp to almost any environment that you can use your iPad or other 10” tablet device: home, office, dorm, park bench, McDonald’s (make sure you get some fries with that).

Better design, better materials. Definitely worth the money.

Grade: A+… 5 very, very big stars.

Folio Protective Case Carbon Black for Ipad Mini
Folio Protective Case Carbon Black for Ipad Mini
Offered by Go4computersca
Price: CDN$ 21.57
11 used & new from CDN$ 19.23

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars (Grade: A) Logitech “Folio for iPad Mini”: A Critical Review., Jan. 29 2014
We just bought the new iPad mini about 2 weeks ago and the screen is absolutely stunning.

I never been a big fan of Logitech's stuff, their accessories have always been very basic, nothing extraordinary. But, this case for the Mini is something special.

First, I like that it's more than just a cheap skin--the cover is made out of a durable "water-resistant" plastic. But, the outer cover feels like canvas.

The inside has a nice foam-feel to it. This won't scratch the screen although we still bought a package of screen protectors.

Even with this slim case, the top part is only 1/16" and the bottom is about 1/8".

The standard cover also doubles as a stand when folded to the back.

Inside, the Mini is held by a three-prong handle. Once the Mini's inside, it's held by a hook that's barely a hair strand thick. With this case, you have better than 99.5% screen space.

It's great. A nice, strong, handsome case.

A

Cable Matters SuperSpeed USB 3.0 Type A to Micro-B Cable in Blue 3 Feet
Cable Matters SuperSpeed USB 3.0 Type A to Micro-B Cable in Blue 3 Feet
3 used & new from CDN$ 14.00

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Cable Matters’ Samsung Connection Cable. A Critical Review, Jan. 26 2014
Length:: 1:07 Mins

I just bought two additional connection plugs after I just bought my new Note 3.

Amazon had a good sale and so the spares were just for keeping in my bag and in my office. But, here’s how Cable Matter’s cable stacks up against the OEM, CTI’s, and a “Samsung” knock-off.

The good news is that the Cable Matters’ plug is just as good as the original Samsung OEM and the CTI. In fact, the Cable Matters and the CTI are actually built better than the Samsung OEM.

The imitation “Samsung” OEM plug is not bad. It’s thin like the Samsung but feels cheap. But, it’s also less than $5 for a pair.

In the video, you can clearly see out how the Cable Matters’ plug is a quality cable and the price is extremely reasonable.

“A+”

Monoprice Graphic Drawing Tablet Pen (108297)
Monoprice Graphic Drawing Tablet Pen (108297)
Offered by Monoprice CA
Price: CDN$ 13.97
10 used & new from CDN$ 13.97

4.0 out of 5 stars A Very Good Re-Design. Monoprice Replacement Pen: A Critical Review., Jan. 26 2014
Length:: 0:56 Mins

I bought a Monoprice 10 x 8.5 and have been using the stock “pen”—it naturally wore out.

The replacement “pen” is a newly re-designed is MUCH nicer. It’s about an inch shorter in size don’t feel as

The set comes with:

* The Pen
* replacement nibs
* metal clamp

*** Pro’s and Con’s ***
+ Good construction, doesn’t feel as flimsy as the original pen.
+ Shirt clip
+ Extra nibs and a metal clamp
+ Only $10!

- The push-button controls should have be raised. You have to constantly look for the buttons—too close to the barrel.

With the exception of the buttons, the pen is far, far better than the original.

B+

OtterBox Commuter Series Case for Samsung Galaxy S4-Carrier Packaging-Black
OtterBox Commuter Series Case for Samsung Galaxy S4-Carrier Packaging-Black
Price: CDN$ 34.99
14 used & new from CDN$ 15.92

3.0 out of 5 stars Otterbox “Commuter” for The Galaxy S4: A Critical Review., Jan. 26 2014
We just upgraded all of our phones and two of them are an S4 and the 5S.

***
Before we got the "Commuter" case, we bought several accessories including the Maxboost Shell hoster combo. So, for us, it's essentially a comparison between the Otterbox "Commuter" to the Maxboost Combo.

The "Commuter" is a 3-piece set that includes a soft rubber case and a hard plastic cover that wraps around the back and side of the phone. It also has a slim, screen protector. It doesn't have a belt clip, though. All for $28.

The Maxboost is slightly slimmer, yet it covers both the back and side very well. It also has a cross-stitch design that feels good to the grip. And, a swivel holster, 2-way kickstand, screen protector and kickstand, a felt interior (to protect the screen when the phone's inverted)... all for $11.

Otterbox Commuter
* Plastic inner case
* Hard outer case
* screen protector
$28

Maxboost "Shell Holster Combo"
*Plastic inner case
* Hard outer case
* Screen protector
* Swivel holster
* 2-way kickstand
* Felt interior
* $11

The Commuter is not to be confused with the top-of-the-line "Defender" which will protect the phone from almost any kind of fall, it is a good form of protection if you're relatively careful with your phone.

I didn't like the fact that a kickstand and belt clip was not built in and when compared to other, private case makers like Maxboost are making BETTER basic hardcover cases AND for a lot less.
Comment

OtterBox [Commuter Series] Apple iPhone 5 and iPhone 5S Case-Retail Packaging Protective Case for iPhone-Black (Discontinued by Manufacturer)
OtterBox [Commuter Series] Apple iPhone 5 and iPhone 5S Case-Retail Packaging Protective Case for iPhone-Black (Discontinued by Manufacturer)
Price: CDN$ 32.77
13 used & new from CDN$ 19.95

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars (Grade: B) Otterbox Commuter for iPhone 5: A Good Basic Cover., Jan. 26 2014
We’ve had Otterbox “Defender” for some of our older phones and so we’re familiar with how well built they are.

I personally called up the Otterbox office about 2 years about an inquired about a case that was big enough to accommodate an extended battery for an EVO 3D. I was told that they only produce those for a few models.

Otterbox should make a case for phablets that it’s customers will most certainly put extended batteries in, like the Note 3 and/or the One Max.

Since we can install a stronger battery on our iPhone 5S, this is sufficient.

The iPhone 5 Commuter case is, in my opinion, better than the Commuter version for the S4.

The case is two-piece, soft-slip cover and the hard case combo along with a screen protector.

I wish that this Otterbox “basic” protection would come with either a kickstand and/or belt clip.

The Commuter case at $20 is competitively priced.

“B”

No Title Available

4.0 out of 5 stars (B+) Unu 11000 mAh External Battery: A Critical Review, Jan. 22 2014
Length:: 2:22 Mins

Unu’s 11000 mAh battery is one of the best all-around high-capacity batteries that’s cost-friendly.

I have several high, high capacity batteries (10G +) and this is consistent with majority of the brands, not near the top but sort of in the middle.

***
Like all Lithium ion batteries, this 11000 battery has to be conditioned for at least 10 days before it can hold a full charge long enough to charge multiple devices if necessary.

It was better than 7 hours after I first plugged it into the wall to get it from half charged to full charge…. 7 hours. (It may have been longer but I had a meeting I had to get up for the next morning.)

After draining my cellphone to 4% of battery strength—this battery, a 3500 mAh battery took an astounding 5 hours to fully charge. Subsequent re-charges was about the same amount of time, and, using the higher 2A/ tablet output.

Despite the battery taking a relatively long time to recharge a device, it also has to be said that it mains its own battery strength for several days.

I have an 8000 mAh from 2 years ago that I found after not using it since 2012, it still had about 80% charge in it when I turned it on. That’s a comforting thing to know when you use a lot of battery-intensive devices that high-capacity batteries are that reliable.

***
Pro’s and Con’s
+ Battery maintains its high-level charge (as opposed to lower-capacity lithium ion whose charge evaporates within hours after recharging a device)
+ Relatively small for a battery its size.
+ Economical. At this writing its $45 (about $15 cheaper than other 11000 mAh batteries.)
+ 2 output ports; one for tablets/ phablets, one for smartphones
+ relatively lightweight.

- Battery’s output is noticeably weaker than many of its competitors
- Battery also takes quite a while to get fully charged.

Considering all of the positives and negatives, Unu’s 11000 is definitely a

B+

ARCTIC Power Bank 4000 Ultra-Slim 2.0A Output 4000mAh Backup Battery/Charger for Tablet and Phone, Silver
ARCTIC Power Bank 4000 Ultra-Slim 2.0A Output 4000mAh Backup Battery/Charger for Tablet and Phone, Silver
Price: CDN$ 45.22
7 used & new from CDN$ 30.40

4.0 out of 5 stars (Grade: B+) Arctic 4000mAh: A Critical Review., Jan. 22 2014
Length:: 1:24 Mins

Artic’s 4000 mAh is a bit of an improvement over their mico-sized 2200 mAH.

Aside from it being a higher capacity battery that can recharge smartphone, phablets and many tablets, this battery is extremely thin and lightweight.

The battery has a couple of minor drawbacks that should be mentioned.

1- Although the battery has two (2) ports to charge the devices I mentioned with a 2A (2mAh output) for tablets and a basic 1A (for smartphones), I found that even after conditioning the battery for several days that the battery was still very slow to recharge a cellphone and I found myself double checking to see if it was still charging.

2- 4000 mAh is essentially good for just one recharge.

So, given the choice between this and the 2200 which are just emergency charge batteries, it makes more sense to pick the 4000 which is only slightly bigger but one that you can recharge a tablet on the go and if you don’t have any access to an ac connection.

ARCTIC Power Bank 4000 Ultra-Slim 2.0A Output 4000mAh Backup Battery/Charger for Tablet and Phone, Black
ARCTIC Power Bank 4000 Ultra-Slim 2.0A Output 4000mAh Backup Battery/Charger for Tablet and Phone, Black
Price: CDN$ 45.35
6 used & new from CDN$ 30.40

4.0 out of 5 stars (Grade: B+) Arctic 4000mAh: A Critical Review., Jan. 22 2014
Length:: 1:24 Mins

Artic’s 4000 mAh is a bit of an improvement over their mico-sized 2200 mAH.

Aside from it being a higher capacity battery that can recharge smartphone, phablets and many tablets, this battery is extremely thin and lightweight.

The battery has a couple of minor drawbacks that should be mentioned.

1- Although the battery has two (2) ports to charge the devices I mentioned with a 2A (2mAh output) for tablets and a basic 1A (for smartphones), I found that even after conditioning the battery for several days that the battery was still very slow to recharge a cellphone and I found myself double checking to see if it was still charging.

2- 4000 mAh is essentially good for just one recharge.

So, given the choice between this and the 2200 which are just emergency charge batteries, it makes more sense to pick the 4000 which is only slightly bigger but one that you can recharge a tablet on the go and if you don’t have any access to an ac connection.

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