I provide honest ratings and reviews on tech, toys, and consumer home goods that I've purchased and used. Reviews are based on hands-on testing and personal observations. All opinions and comments are my own.

Disclosure: ReviewedbyPhil is reader-supported. If you click on or buy something via an affiliate link on this site, I may earn a commission.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Jiffy Seed Starting Peat Pellets Review

Jiffy Seed Starting Peat Pellets Review

Buy it at Amazon: Jiffy Seed Starting Peat Pellets [Affiliate Link]

Takeaway: These pellets also have a good saturation rate and don't leave any dry, hard "chunks" of peat in the middle after expanding.
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Aukey 12000mAh External Battery Charger (PB-N28) Review

Aukey 12000mAh External Battery Charger (PB-N28) Review

Buy it at Amazon: Aukey 12000mAh External Battery Charger (PB-N28) [Affiliate Link]

Takeaway: The size, shape and finish means that this battery travels well in a laptop bag and can be stowed easily in the glove compartment for emergencies.
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Wednesday, March 11, 2015

TaoTronics Bluetooth Sport Headset (TT-BH05) Review

TaoTronics Bluetooth Sport Headset (TT-BH05) Review

Buy it at Amazon: TaoTronics Bluetooth Sport Headset (TT-BH05) [Affiliate Link]

Takeaway: These headphones are lightweight, comfortable and easy to use.
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TaoTronics Colored String Lights Review (TT-SL037)

These Colorful LED String Lights Add Magical Fun and Fancy to Almost Anything

Buy it at Amazon: TaoTronics Colored String Lights TT-SL037) [Affiliate Link]

Takeaway: These lights are a low powered, but bright set of color LED lights on a thin copper wire (33 ft long).

The lights cycle through a number of colors at various speeds and patterns. It would have been nice if there was a way to control the blinking and patterns of the lights, like an "always on" mode rather than have a fixed flashing cycle. Note that these lights cannot be linked to another set of lights to extend them. The adapter cord is about 5 feet long.

The copper wire is thin but firm, around 23-25 gauge, with three strands running the entire length. Each wire is insulated with a plastic clearcoat and the adapter connection is fitted with a screw cover making this entire unit water resistant and usable outdoors. The thin wires are easy to bend and shape, and I like that they are almost invisible when strung out and the lights are on in the darkness. However, they are also easy to break if you aren't careful! As with shaping any metal that is thin and flexible, creating sharp angles and bending multiple times at the same point will cause it to weaken and break, so I would recommended re-shaping this string light as infrequently as possible. That being said I found this set of string lights to be incredibly versatile and easy to work with. I did not have any problems unwrapping the lights from the tube they were wrapped around (no tangles!).

The lights are very bright for their relative size and are almost too intense when grouped close together in a small ball, though when fully strung out, the brightness is just right for holiday decorating. The wire gets slightly warm to the touch during operation but not hot, so it's safe to wrap around your live plants. The plug adapter runs a bit hot after a while (about as hot as a laptop battery).

Overall, I thought these lights added a nice bit of fun color and movement to an otherwise dull corner of my living room. I get the impression that these lights would probably do fine outdoors as well, although high winds would likely cause twisting or breakage of the wires so I would only use them wrapped tightly around a fixed object like a post or railing.

Buy it at Amazon: TaoTronics Colored String Lights TT-SL037) [Affiliate Link]
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Friday, March 6, 2015

TaoTronics Humidifier TT-AH001 Review

TaoTronics Humidifier TT-AH001 Review

Buy it at Amazon: TaoTronics Humidifier TT-AH001 [Affiliate Link]

Takeaway: Adds humidity for comfort and relief from dry air.
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Thursday, March 5, 2015

RavPower All-in-1 FileHub Review (RP-WD03)

Get On-the-Go Mobile Power with a WiFi Router and NAS Built-in

Buy it at Amazon: RavPower All-in-1 FileHub (RP-WD03) [Affiliate Link]

Takeaway: Share photos and videos stored on an SD camera card wirelessly.

The device also can act as an access point to boost the wireless signal in rooms that are far away from my router. These are handy features, though I'll mostly just use this as an external battery pack to charge up my phone or tablet on the go. Everything was plug and play from directly connecting to it via WiFi, to linking it up to my network over WiFi. Accessing the device via static IP address was quick and painless. You can also connect to it to use as WiFi storage on your phone or tablet if it doesn't have a card slot to add additional memory. It's a nice travel accessory to toss in the laptop bag because it can replace several devices with just one unit that's compact and functional.

Buy it at Amazon: RavPower All-in-1 FileHub (RP-WD03) [Affiliate Link]
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