iLounge - First Looks

First Looks

Welcome to our new, continuously-updated First Looks - a collection of previews showing brand new iPod, iPhone and iPad accessories that we’re currently in the process of testing. Here’s what’s hot right now:

NRNot Rated

Model:  MyTek Clef DAC/Amp

MyTek Clef DAC/Amp

Just under a year ago, we met the guys from MyTek Digital at CanJam NYC. There we met MyTek's Michal Jurewicz, who was holding an oddly-shaped device in his hand — at the time, we only knew that it was a prototype Bluetooth headphone adapter. Today, MyTek made things official by announcing the Clef, which they're calling the "world's first portable, battery-powered hi-fi system."

MyTek Clef DAC/Amp

NRNot Rated

Model:  Sound Huggle On-Ear Headphones

Sound Huggle On-Ear Headphones

Some people have no problem with the cold — we see these people jogging through the snow and riding bikes in negative temperatures. That's not us. We have a low tolerance for cold. Trying to wear ear protection with headphones can be a pain, with headbands making IEMs uncomfortable and hats making over-ear headphones impossible to fit. One company, currently in the middle of an Indiegogo campaign, thinks they have the answer. The Sound Huggle is an innovative device that marries earmuffs with circumaural headphones. We received a production sample and tested them out in the cold — never let it be said that we take ourselves too seriously around here.

Sound Huggle On-Ear Headphones

NRNot Rated

Company: MOS

Model: Kick

Price: $35

Compatible: All iPad Airs, All iPad minis, All iPhones, All iPod touches

MOS Kick Stand + Tripod Mount

Made from solid steel and billed as "the world's smallest, pocket-size stand and tripod mount" for iOS devices, MOS's new Kick ($35) is a very low-profile option designed primarily for holding iPhones upright for photography purposes. Measuring around 2.8" long by 1.2" wide by 0.35" tall at its largest points, Kick includes a circular screw hole for attachment of a self-supplied tripod, plus a screw-tension adjustable groove that holds your iOS device. The groove is padded with three thin sheets of rubber, and can be tightened around the edge of your device if you want to hold it closer to 90 degrees than on a reclining angle. Kick also has a triangular keychain attachment point and a bottle opener on the sides, both a little on the sharp side for something you might toss into a pocket. While Kick can be used as a stand and does have enough weight and strength to hold a bare iPad Air 2, it's definitely on the fine edge of tablet compatibility, and best suited to smaller devices.

MOS Kick Stand + Tripod Mount

NRNot Rated

Company: SwitchEasy

Model: AirMask

Price: $30

Compatible: iPhone 6 Plus

SwitchEasy AirMask for iPhone 6 Plus

Billed as "the world's first non-case protection solution for iPhone 6," SwitchEasy's new AirMask for iPhone 6 Plus ($30) is a set of two thin plastic stickers that attach to the front and back of the iPhone 6 Plus, providing 0.3mm-thick anti-scratch coverage without anti-drop protection at the same price as a regular case. The front piece has clear screen protection in the center of a faux metallic version of the iPhone's normally white or black glass bezel, with holes for the front speaker, sensors, and Touch ID button. By comparison, the back piece is all faux metallic plastic with a hole for the rear iSight camera, flash, and microphone. They fit together, leaving the side controls and bottom holes exposed, though not sticking quite as well to the iPhone's curvy edges as might be hoped -- adhesive inside holds the front and back surfaces firmly to the iPhone, but the edges may be a little loose near port and control holes. Wet and dry wipes are included to clean off your iPhone before installation. A version for the smaller iPhone 6 will apparently be sold for $25, and three colors are planned.

SwitchEasy AirMask for iPhone 6 Plus

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