Bluetooth speaker with a vintage aesthetic
With an attractive vintage look, Electrohome Birmingham’s retro Bluetooth speaker seeks to bring back the era of mop tops and mullets from the golden age of rock ’n’ roll. I prefer to say it reminds me of a hi-fi stereo system my dad had long ago, although I did have a mullet in the past.
While the look takes you back in time, the sound and features are up to date and forward marching. It produces room-filling sound to any playlist or can stream any music service with a Bluetooth connection from your smartphone, tablet or computer.
The exterior (9.5 by 13.4 by 7.1 inches) is hand-crafted from engineered MDF wood with a carrying handle built into the top. Producing the sound inside are dual full-range 4-inch woofers with an Integrated amplifier (frequency response 60Hz–20KHz).
To add to the vintage look, controls for adjusting the music, power and volume are all knobs along the top of the front side of the speaker. There’s also a 3.5-millimeter aux input for a direct connection and USB charging port to connect your cable for device charging. Working as a Bluetooth speaker is the primary function of the Birmingham, but there’s an appealing feature for guitar players when using so they can jam along. Since I have zero musical talents, I couldn’t try it; if you’re a guitar player, you can plug into the built-in ¼-inch input and customize the live sound with the volume and gain control. www.electrohome.com, $149.
Twelve South’s limited-edition AirBag for AirPods and AirPods Pro will store, carry and protect the expensive earbuds in a style like no other I’ve seen. The mini leather satchel can be worn over your shoulder or around your neck, take the leather strap off to carry it with the leather top handle, or just carry it in a purse, pocket or backpack. Your AirPods will stay in the AirBag securely when closing the front-sided metal snap button while also allowing wireless charging for the AirPods Pro. There’s also an opening for a Lightning cable for charging. www.twelvesouth.com, $49.99.
Upgrade your padlocks
Rather than having to remember a combination or have a key to open it, the Tapplock Lite uses your fingerprint. The smart-fingerprint portable padlock opens in under 0.8 seconds after being programmed with your fingerprint. You can store up to 100 fingerprints for each lock, which are managed in the Tapplock app. In addition to the fingerprints, you can use the Tapplock app to open the lock with Bluetooth or with a combination used via Morse code. The Tapplock Lite is built with a metal chassis, and it can withstand being fully submerged in water, making it perfect for outdoors or even sweaty/wet fingerprints. Inside is a rechargeable battery, good for eight months or 1,200 unlocks. A nice features allows it to unlock with just an eight-second charge with a portable battery, in the event the lock’s battery goes dead. tapplock.com $39 each, two-pack for $72 and a three-pack for $105.