The Thunderbolt ports on our Macs are starting to get a little lonely. It’s been just shy of a year since Apple and Intel launched the standard with the early 2011 MacBook Pro, and there are still only a handful of supported accessories. Of those, there are barely any that are aimed towards consumers; most are for high-end, professional users. And Western Digital’s upcoming My Book Thunderbolt Duo ($TBD) isn’t going to be for everyone, either, but it’s another clean design with extra horsepower under the hood. Originally previewed at this year’s International CES, My Book Thunderbolt Duo doesn’t yet have a final release date, but the hardware’s real and looking pretty good.Read More
When you’ve seen as many accessories over the years as we have—literally thousands upon thousands—it’s hard for something as simple as a computer bag to stand out from the masses. So when we say that we were really impressed when we spotted Incipio’s Utility Nylon Messenger Bag ($130) a few weeks back at the Consumer Electronics Show, understand that for what it’s worth. With a really nice design, premium materials, and plenty of storage, it’s a bag worth falling for.Read More
Apple fans are hard to sate—will there ever be enough new products, rumors, or details regarding the inner workings of this notoriously secretive company? Fortune Magazine’s Adam Lashinksy has set out to feed this hunger with his new book Inside Apple How America’s Most Admired—and Secretive—Company Really Works ($27), which was today published by Business Plus in hardcover, iBooks, and Kindle formats; the digital versions are $13 each, less than half the physical version’s price. Updated with thoughts on the book’s actual value to readers, below.Read More
Pioneer’s DDJ-ERGO ($699) isn’t the first DJ controller we’ve seen for the Mac, but it is one of the coolest—and serious DJs will likely see the asking price as money well spent. This board is built from the bottom up to complement your Mac in everything from its physical design to the integration with Algoriddim’s Djay 4; it features a dock to hold a MacBook inside. And of course, it has all the other features you’d expect from a good DJ controller, including MIDI compatibility and a straightforward USB-to-Mac connection for power.
The options Apple provides for upgrading MacBooks to anti-glare displays have remained limited since it switched all of its computers to glossy screens several years ago. Today, anti-glare displays are only available as customization options on the 15” and 17” MacBook Pros, and the former comes at a $150 premium—MacBook Air and 13” MacBook Pro users are totally out of luck. Thankfully there are aftermarket anti-glare solutions, including some from Luxa2: AR1 ($25) for the 13” MacBook Pro and AR2 ($27) for the 15” model are inexpensive ways to protect and reduce glare on your screen. Coming soon are MacBook Air versions called AR3 and the hard coated transparent HC3, previewed at this year’s CES show.Read More
United SGP has released more products than we can count over the years, but for the most part, the company has focused on cases and accessories for Apple’s smallest gadgets. Now it is moving into nice laptop bags, having introduced the Klasden Series Levanaus Backpack ($90) and Neumann Shoulder Bag ($63). Both look like well designed, very functional carriers for your favorite MacBook. Updated January 23, 2012 with hands-on impressions and pictures!
February - March 2012
We could wax poetic about the merger of art and technology when talking about Logical Art’s Empty Memory USB Memory Sticks (€48-€60/~$62-$77), or we could just cut to the chase and tell you these are some really cool looking 4GB flash drives. There are actually two different styles in the family—Transparency and Structure—both of which come accented with one of three different metals. Any version will really stand out from the plastic options that currently dominate the memory stick market.Read More
We’ll start with the painful part first: PKG’s Leather Simple Sleeve, part of the company’s Black Crown Collection, is an expensive case—$269-$399, depending on your MacBook’s size. But after seeing them in person at the 2012 Consumer Electronics Show, we just know that some users will be willing to pay the price to own them, because the leather PKG is using is really jaw-droppingly impressive.Read More
It’s hard to find fault with the Mac mini when it comes to the diminutive tower’s I/O options; Apple gave even its lowest-end machine a pretty impressive collection of features, as long as you’re not concerned about CDs and DVDs. But discs remain a legitimate concern for some users, and there are times when people may need more ports to plug things into, as well. That’s why Newer Technology introduced miniStack Max ($TBD) at the 2012 International CES.Read More
Apple’s iWork and iLife suites already enable “the rest of us” to make music, movies, presentations, and more. Today, the company has added the educational textbook world to its sights, introducing an app to make creating books just as simple. With a Keynote-like interface, iBooks Author (Free) is available in the Mac App Store today. Apple hasn’t traditionally given away creative tools like this, so the fact that there’s no cost involved is a welcome break from tradition. It’s made to interact with and complement iBooks 2 for iOS devices, also announced today, and is going to be a big deal for large publishers and individual authors alike.Read More
Yantouch’s new JellyWake2 ($150) will look very familiar if you’ve seen our coverage of this company’s earlier JellyWake—a beautiful ambient lamp that caught our editors’ attention last year. But this sequel sports some major improvements: in addition to its unique color-shifting LED light system, JellyWake2 now doubles as an analog desktop clock, adds an Infrared remote, and includes new audio effects. Now you can experience the up close magic of its novel gesture-based controls, or use buttons to change its light show from afar.Read More
This isn’t the first time we’ve seen Belkin’s Thunderbolt Express Dock ($299)—that would be last September—but it got a big make over just in time for the 2012 International CES, as well a promised release date: September 2012. Billed as the ultimate accessory for the MacBook Air, this new dock is compatible with all Thunderbolt-equipped Macs, adding extra I/O ports to whatever machine you use it with, and enabling you to make a simple connection to a notebook computer when it returns to all the peripherals on your desk.Read More
The best way to describe this app in a nutshell: Snapseed is an awesome photo editing tool. In our review of the iPad and iPhone version, we said the app “focuses solely on making photos look more professional, employing a user interface with a modest learning curve that’s actually worth learning” and highly recommended it to our readers. Now Nik Software has brought Snapseed ($20) to the Mac.Read More
Desktop cable holders generally aren’t the most exciting things in the world, but when they’re designed well, they can add class to an otherwise chaotic workstation. As soon as we heard that Just Mobile was going to take a stab at its own, we knew we’d like the results. Introduced at the 2012 International CES in the iLounge Pavilion as the winning entry from a European design competition held last year, AluCube Mini ($20/pair) is just the sort of cute little metal thing we expect from Just Mobile.Read More
If you own a 2011-vintage Mac, you’re probably still trying to find super-fast accessories to use with its new Thunderbolt port. Elgato’s ready to wow you with a new option: the plainly-named Thunderbolt SSD ($430-$700). Completely portable, made from dark metal, and silent, the Thunderbolt SSD promises speedy and reliable data storage in your choice of 120GB or 240GB versions—small capacities for the prices because they use solid-state memory rather than disks, but the speeds may justify the expenditure.Read More