Gadgets: Accessories for your gifted gadgets
The iPods have been unwrapped and you may think you have everything needed in the world of gadgets.
Guess again -- it never ends and there are lots of cool things to add to your devices for enhanced use or just to keep them powered up.
Regardless of what device you have or even how much you paid for it, without power, it's useless.
That's where the Dexim DCA103 BluePack S3 makes a great addition for many portable power-hungry gadgets.
Depending on the device, this can add up to 10 hours of talk time to a cell phone, up to 12 hours of video watching or a whopping 72 hours of audio.
The portable battery comes with the standard USB cable for the Apple iPod/iPhones products. Mini- or micro-USB cables are also included for BlackBerry models, T-Mobile's G1 and all HTC phones. Before ordering, check the Dexim web site for confirmation that your device is compatible.
The battery is a 2600mA Lithium Polymer and can be charged with the included dual USB AC charger or connected to any open USB computer port.
The battery is surrounded by a metal case with rounded edges for comfort while stored in a pocket and has built-kin LCD warning lights.
A carrying bag is included to store all the parts and pieces.
Details: dexim.net, $65
Next get a good set of earbuds, since the set that comes with most any portable media player is worthless.
The earbud/headphone market is pretty crowded but a great choice is the ergonomically designed Phiaton PS 200's ($249).
When choosing an item like these, comfort is almost as critical as the sound, and during a recent three-hour flight I didn't take them out once.
Simply said, these have it all with great sound and great looks.
Phiaton is known for great sound and these have the company's Applied Dynamic Speaker Driver, which uses acoustic transducer technology. This all delivers the advertised great bass with outstanding clarity.
Users will have a choice of three sizes of silicon tips, which are included, for the most comfortable fit. I never had to change the ones that were installed.
For those wanting the technical aspects, they are packed with dual balanced armature drivers along with a passive crossover network in the .176-ounce device.
As for the design, the headphones hang outside the ear and resemble a jet engine.
A hard carrying case with a cable-management system is included to store the headphones and the extra silicon tips.
Recently Phiaton also introduced PS 210 ($99) earphones, which are ergonomically designed to fit just outside the ear canal and offer the sound of the in-ear style.
They feature a lightweight aluminum body and come with four sizes of silicone ear tips.
Portable desktop speaker systems are about as common and popular as headphones.
If you're looking for one of these units for portability and you don't want to break the bank, the Logitech S125i is the device for you.
It's small enough (7.77-by-3.54-by- 3.35 inches) to throw in any suitcase or just take up a corner of any desktop and is simple to use.
Power it up with the included AC adaptor or get four AA batteries (up to 10 hours use) for a picnic-ready portable music player. Then dock your iPod or iPhone and play away.
For the 100 or so non-Apple users out there, connect your device via a port (3.5mm auxiliary input) on the back with your own cable.
If you desire for one of these units is to fill a room up with sound, look elsewhere. But if you want sound at a medium sound setting, this is a great choice.
Users can add some bass with the push of a button on the front of the unit.
Details: logitech.com, $45
Protection is a great thing when it comes to the high-priced iPods and iPhones.
Bodyguardz will protect these and many other media players, cell phones or laptops.
The product is a clear film, which is designed and custom fitted for each specific device. They are made with the same film many people (including me) have on the front end of their car for protection.
Once applied, your portable media device is scratch- and dust resistant.
The application might sound kind of complicated since it's more than just a peel and paste, but once completed it works great. Users need to read the instructions before use starting but they are simple.
Remember, each kit is customized for a specific device and I tested it out on my iPod touch.
This kit comes with a two complete sets of protectors and the application solution.
Once applied I found it worked great, although I didn't like the part where I had to wait 12 hours before turning the device on.
Users might also wonder how the touch screen works once applied and it was never an issue -- it worked just like before.
Prices vary by device; the iPod touch kit I used sells for $24.95.
(c) 2009, Gregg Ellman.
Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services.