2014 iPad iPhone iPod Buyers' Guide from iLounge.com


STM Bags Drifter Medium Laptop Backpack

We’ve never been shy about proclaiming our admiration for STM’s bags. For years, the company has been making some of the best carriers on the market, and our editors have used certain STM bags on a daily basis. Now it’s back with a brand new collection of bags called Annex, which we first previewed at the 2014 CES. There are four bags in the lineup, including Drifter Medium Laptop Backpack ($140). As far as laptop bags go, it has just about everything one could ask for. Designed for an “urban, fashion-oriented customer,” it looks quite nice and is plenty practical, too. Read More


2Q 2014

LaCie 8big Rack Thunderbolt 2

External storage developer LaCie’s support for the Intel- and Apple-developed Thunderbolt connectivity standard was unwavering, so it’s no surprise to see the company debuting multiple early Thunderbolt 2 solutions. In addition to faster versions of its prior 2big and 5big desktop hard drive systems, LaCie has announced 8big Rack Thunderbolt 2 ($TBD)—a rack-mounted multi-drive solution with your choice of 12TB, 24TB, or 48TB of capacity. While it’s not as fancy on the outside as LaCie’s other storage solutions, the box opens to reveal eight hard drive bays that can be loaded up with 3TB or 6TB Seagate 7200RPM drives, run in tandem for high-speed video editing and storage. Read More

July 2014

iSkelter SlatePro

Sure, you can put your Mac on any desk, but why not pick one that’s made for an Apple lifestyle, such as iSkelter’s SlatePro ($498+)? It’s much more than just a flat surface and four legs. This desk is specifically designed for a modern workflow, with plenty of amenities for all your gadgets. Read More


Tech21 Impact Snap Case for MacBook

When it comes to MacBook cases, there’s not too much variety. Most cases have two hard plastic pieces — one that snaps onto the top, the other onto the bottom. They may come in different colors, but it can be hard to tell one company’s case apart from another. Tech21’s Impact Snap Case for MacBook ($100) is different. Yes, it’s more expensive than most of the competition, but that’s because it’s made to be more protective. Read More


The Roost Stand

The big problem with most MacBook stands, as well-designed and functional as they may be, is they’re not portable. They fit perfectly on a desk or table, but not in a bag. The Roost Stand ($75-$80) from The Roost is different. Funded by a successful Kickstarter campaign, it was uniquely designed to fold up, making it perfect for working on the go. Read More

April 18, 2014

Samsung U28D590D 28-Inch Ultra High Definition LED Monitor

It’s not every day we’d recommend picking up a Samsung device while waiting for Apple to make its move, but there’s an exception to every rule. Samsung’s U28D590D 28-Inch Ultra High Definition LED Monitor ($700) will be available on April 18, 2014, likely before a 4K monitor makes it out of Cupertino. The price is almost certainly lower than what Apple would charge, too, making this an especially appealing option for users with Macs that support ultra-high resolution output. Read More


Western Digital My Passport Pro

We post a lot of hard drives on this site, but usually, it’s more of the same. External storage in a compact package, sometimes faster, sometimes cheaper. Western Digital’s My Passport Pro ($300-$430) is a truly exciting new option though, for a number of reasons. It’s a dual-drive system, with up to 4TB of storage. It’s a Thunderbolt system, too, making it one of the least expensive drives to use the technology that we’ve ever seen. Read More

June 2014

Sonnet xMac Pro Server

It almost seems a shame to hide the beautiful, tubular body of the Mac Pro. Sonnet’s new xMac Pro Server ($TBD) is slated to ship in June, and that’s exactly what it does. It’s for a good reason, though — based on the company’s earlier xMac mini Server, this hardware turns the tower into a rack-mountable solution, adding expansion options, too. Read More


Drobo Drobo (Third Generation)

There are so many different external hard drives out there that do the same things. Plug them in to your Mac, and they can hold extra content, or back up your machine using Time Machine. Drobo is, and always has been different. The company has created a line of desktop storage options that use a technology it calls BeyondRAID, allowing you to easily protect your data, and expand the storage capacity as needed. Newest among them is the third generation of the flagship Drobo ($349+), with a lower price and more advanced features. Read More


Incase EO Travel Roller Bag

Anyone who takes quick trips knows that having to carry multiple bags—luggage plus something to lug around a computer and iPad—can be a pain. That’s why we can definitely see the appeal of Incase’s EO Travel Roller Bag ($250). The same size as a traditional carry-on bag, it includes dedicated space for your Mac and more. Read More


Peng Sun Lens Blur

Claiming to add a higher quality of blur to photos, Peng Sun’s Lens Blur looks like a pretty cool app. It’s all based around the bokeh effect, which the developer defines as “the pleasing or aesthetic quality of out-of-focus blur in a photograph.” Used right, blurry photos can be pretty cool, and this should be an easy way to achieve them. Read More

Microsoft Wireless Mobile Mouse 1850

Say what you will about its computers and software, Microsoft makes some genuinely nice peripherals. The most recent is Wireless Mobile Mouse 1850 ($15), which may just make a travel mouse for your Mac. No, it’s not quite as fancy as a Magic Mouse, but at such a low price, you can’t expect all the bells and whistles. Read More

Satechi 4-Port USB 3.0 Premium Aluminum Hub

When we first covered Satechi’s Premium 4 Port Aluminum USB Hub in the middle of 2013, we commented on its great looks, but concluded that we were “hoping Satechi quickly catches up with Apple and releases a USB 3 version of the Hub to match the new Mac lineup.” Well, here we are a number of months later, and the company has done just that. 4-Port USB 3.0 Premium Aluminum Hub ($50) is the natural evolution. Read More

OWC Mercury Pro 16X External Blu-ray Optical Drive

Only years after the first MacBook Air shipped without an optical drive, there’s now only one computer in Apple’s entire lineup that comes with one built-in, and there are rumors that the classic 13” MacBook Pro is going to be cut sooner rather than later. Of course, there’s the standalone SuperDrive for those who need access to CDs and DVDs, but Apple never resolved its licensing issues with the “bag of hurt” known as Blu-ray. A few companies have taken up the mantle, however, including OWC with its new Mercury Pro External 16X Blu-ray Optical Drive ($168). The new drive promises up to 16X write speeds for DVDs and Blu-rays. Read More


Microsoft OneNote

Although Microsoft doesn’t offer all of its OS X software through the Mac App Store—the Microsoft Office suite is conspicuously missing—it does have a handful of titles available for download. Today, that list has grown by one with the addition of OneNote (Free). Long available for iOS (and of course Windows PCs), OneNote is a digital notebook similar to Evernote that allows you to take notes and sync them across various devices using the cloud. Read More

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