Review of the Phorus PR1 Receiver

I don’t normally do these sorts of things because there are usually plenty of good reviews by actual review companies or tech companies, but there don’t seem to be a lot of them out there for this product right now.

Admittedly, I’m not very good at this.  I will try my best though.
phorus-pr1-receiver-office
First of all, the device is a little on the pricey side, compared to crapple’s airplay express thing. The price at this moment is $149 and is available directly through Phorus’s website (while it is shipped and processed by Amazon’s store http://www.phorus.com/pr1-receiver).  The image above shows the Phorus PR-1 (on left) plugged into some sort of speaker.

The build quality is good, and it comes with two sets of audio cables (use whichever you need or prefer) and it is nice and compact.

This is what comes in the box:
PR1 Receiver
Power adapter
Audio cable (mini jack to mini jack, 6′)
Y-adapter (mini jack to 2 RCA)
USB-A to USB micro cable
Warranty and Quick Start Guide
Continue reading “Review of the Phorus PR1 Receiver”

On the road a lot? Use hotel wireless for connectivity to multiple devices?

Then this device might be for you.  (From Tom’s Hardware)

 

Satechi Intros Multifunction Mini Router

Here’s a good way to connect multiple devices to a hotel’s Internet connection without having to shell out insanely hefty per-device-per-24-hour fees.

Zoom

Satechi introduced on Wednesday a handy little multifunction mini-router geared for the “professional on the go”. It’s small enough to seat within a single electrical outlet, and can fit within a purse or briefcase for easy transport. The gadget is available now for a mere $39.99 on Amazon and Satechi’s website.

Called the Satechi Multifunction Mini Router, this device provides five modes of connectivity: access mode, router mode, universal repeater mode, client mode, and bridge mode. Two Ethernet ports at the bottom provide one connection to an existing broadband connection, and the other to a PC. A WPS button is on the front as well as five LEDs for LAN, WAN, WPS, WLAN and Power notifications.

Router mode should be fairly obvious: connect the device directly to an Internet connection provided by an ISP. A wired desktop or laptop joins the network via the Ethernet port while the router serves as an access point for wireless devices. This is the ideal mode for setting up a new, small network consisting only of a few devices.

In Universal Repeater Mode, the mini-router can connect to a network’s wireless router and extend the signal to portions of a house or office that are out of the router’s range. In Client mode, the user can wirelessly connect the router to an existing wireless network as a makeshift firewall, keeping the user’s MAC address and personal information private.

Finally there’s the Bridge Mode. This allows two or more wireless access points to communicate with each other to join multiple LANs. The router supports the newest 802.11n wireless standard and is backwards compatible with older 802.11b/g standards, supporting a wide range of devices. However it’s only single-band, offering up to 300 Mbps via the 2.4 GHz band.

“The Wireless Multifunction Mini Router has enough speed and wireless range to power a complex assortment of devices, enabling you to create a highly efficient mobile office or entertainment network in no time,” the company said. “Small enough to fit in your pocket, the Wireless Multifunction Mini Router is capable of providing robust wireless network solutions to travelers, students, or anyone looking to expand their network.”

Considering we had to shell out $14 per device per 24 hours at the hotel in Las Vegas during CES 2013, this would have been handy in sharing one connection to multiple devices. For more information about the Satechi Multifunction Mini Router, head here.

Two great posts about wireless

Saw two good articles on wireless and decided to share them.  One is about the new Wireless 802.11 AC protocol which promises gigabit connection speeds.

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/wi-fi-802.11ac-router,3386.html

The other is “Why your Wi-Fi sucks, and what to do about it” which details common connection and speed problems, why they’re happening and what you can attempt to do to fix it.

http://www.tomshardware.com/picturestory/571-wi-fi-beamforming-networking.html

Ahh… wonderful home automation

Just saw this on Amazon.com, it’s a pretty nifty thermostat. Automatically learns when you’re home and away, can be controlled with a smartphone, saves energy, etc.

I have a Honeywell Visionpro 8000 and I thought it was great when it came out (like 10 years ago), but this is the next step. Check it out here: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B006ML9J4O/ref=amb_link_363389382_2?pf_rd_m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_s=right-3&pf_rd_r=1XSZR79NMCFF2NT5A9TP&pf_rd_t=101&pf_rd_p=1374036862&pf_rd_i=507846

At $250, it’s not exactly cheap, but I imagine it could save a bit of dough once installed.