Griffin Technology PowerDuo Reserve review – iPhone/iPod power at home, in a car and on the go

Here on Gadling, we’ve covered quite a few portable battery packs in the past – and most of them are relatively straightforward (and boring). The new Griffin PowerDuo Reserve is the first truly interesting and innovative power product I’ve seen in a long time. The product consists of three parts – an AC charger (the PowerBlock Reserve), a DC/car charger (the PowerJolt Reserve) and a 500mAh ipod/iPhone battery pack (the Reserve Battery).

The combination of these three products delivers a power solution that can charge your device at home, in a car or on the go. Best of all, the AC and car chargers are designed to charge and dock with the reserve battery.

At home, you can plug your iPod/iPhone USB cable into the AC charger, while charging the battery pack. When you leave on a trip, you can unplug the charger, fold in the prongs and pack it away. Then, if you need some backup power, you simply undock the battery pack and plug it into your device. The same applies to the car charger.

Both the AC and car charger deliver 1 AMP of power – which means your device will charge much faster than many of the low cost (and low power) solutions on the market.

The AC charger is rated for 100-240 Volts, so with the appropriate plug adapter, you’ll be able to use it anywhere in the world.

The 500mAh Reserve Battery is by no means the most powerful on the market, but it’ll be enough to add a couple of hours of use to your device. On the front of the battery is a power status button and 5 green LED’s show the remaining capacity.

The Griffin Technology PowerDuo Reserve is a very well designed power solution – for a single purchase price ($59.99) , you get three chargers in one, with the ability to keep your device going, no matter what kind of situation you are in.

The parts are also available separately, so if you only need the AC or car charger, you can mix and match. The Reserve Battery is also available separately ($19.99) – which means you can order a spare and be sure you never run out of power on the go.

Product links:

PowerDuo Reserve
PowerBlock Reserve
PowerJolt Reserve
Reserve Battery

Griffin Travel Stand for iPod and iPhone reviewed

The Griffin Technology Travel Stand for iPod and iPhone is one of the the smartest little gadgets I’ve reviewed in a long time. Despite not consisting of much more than a small case and rubber headphone winder, this product fulfills multiple tasks in one.

When closed, it is a great case for your headphones – keeping them wound around the included rubber wrapper. But when you open it up, this little marvel becomes a brilliant little movie watching stand for your device. Despite the name, the travel stand works perfectly with almost any player on the market – including most mobile phones and small media tablets.

How good is the Travel Stand for iPod and iPhone? Well, when I first saw it, it made me furious. Furious because I didn’t invent it. The whole thing is ridiculously simply, yet so perfectly executed.

Headphones store neatly inside the stand when not in use.

And the whole thing folds up into a neat little headphone case.

The viewing angle is perfect, and rubber feat on the bottom prevent it from sliding around on your airline tray table.

Best of all, the Griffin Travel Stand for iPod and iPhone retails for just $14.99 (though I have already seen it at the local Walmart for under $10!).

If you have ever struggled with watching a movie on your flight, this is one $15 you won’t regret investing – even if it is just to keep your headphones protected. You’ll find this brilliant little product at or your local electronics retail store.

H2O Audio iPod Nano case turns your player into an underwater video camera

As the first iPod with a camera, the new Apple iPod Nano is surprisingly fun to play with. But until now, it wasn’t the kind of gadget you’d take to the beach, as iPods and water don’t tend to mix. H2O Audio can change that, thanks to their new “Capture” case.

This $79.99 case turns your iPod Nano (5th generation) into a full underwater sports camera. Plus, its waterproof headphone jack lets you listen to music without the risk of damaging your iPod. Best of all, all controls on the iPod can be fully accessed.

The integrated polycarbonate lens lets you take the case down to 12 feet of water. The package includes a sports armband and beltclip. The case is available for purchase right now, directly from the site of the manufacturer.

(Via: Gizmodo)

Gadling gear review – Altec Lansing iMT800 MIX – the boombox is back!

The year is 1984 – you put on your backpack, fill your pockets with twenty bucks worth of D cell’s, and grab a couple of your best Duran Duran and Culture Club tapes off the dresser. As you leave on your trip, you carry your Panasonic Boombox to the car, ready to use it while walking down the street at your destination – because that is what cool people do.

It may have been years since anyone traveled with a Boombox, let alone had anything that required tapes, but portable audio is more alive than ever. Some people may travel with a portable speaker, but others may be in need of something with a little more “oomph”.

The Altec Lansing iMT800 “MIX” Boombox is the boombox from the 80’s – reinvented. The MIX has some of that great 80’s styling, combined with the features you’d expect from a current generation music accessory.

At first glance, it is hard to not notice the massive speakers on the front and side of the unit. In the middle is an iPod dock and a display, and on the top are controls and 2 additional inputs.
The MIX comes with the usual assortment of iPod docking adapters, making it compatible with any iPod, iPod Touch or iPhone with a dock connector. Once inserted into the MIX, a metal bracket slides down over your player, keeping it in place, and preventing it from falling out.

Like the old Boomboxes from the 80’s, the MIX also takes a huge stash of D cell batteries – 8 in total. They’ll keep the unit running for about 30 hours (manufacturer rating).

When at home, or in a hotel, the unit can also operate off the included AC adapter. I would have preferred to see the AC adapter built into the unit, but that would have pushed its weight to the max.

On the front and top of the MIX are carrying handles – they are not just for decoration, as they really are strong enough to hold the unit with. This means you can actually use the Altec Lansing iMT800 MIX as a shoulder carried boombox, listening to Van Halen playing off your 32GB iPhone 3GS. Sure, you’ll look like a bit of a dork, but that probably has more to do with your taste in music. On the rear of the MIX is the AC jack and FM antenna.

The MIX offers 4 different music sources – iPod/iPhone, FM Radio and 2 AUX inputs. The unit comes with 2 3.5mm cables, which means you can hook up a non-Apple device like a Zune or a Blackberry.

The display on the front of the MIX is very cool – it can be programmed with your own personal startup message, and displays what kind of iPod is inserted. It also shows the track name when you play stuff off the iPod dock. The display also shows RDS information from any compatible radio station you are tuned in to.

Controlling the MIX is simple – the top has just 4 buttons and a dial. Included with the unit is a wireless remote control. This remote can control the power, source, iPod track, volume and radio preset. It has a slick carabiner clip on the top, should you feel the urge to clip it to your pants.

Now on to the most important part of the product – the audio. If you were planning to use the MIX to take care of the music at your next party, you will not be disappointed. Not only does it sound fantastic, it can be cranked up to MAX to produce some absolutely mind blowing volume, without any distortion.

The integrated equalizer is great – in basic mode, it lets you control bass and treble, and if you hold down the EQ button along with the track forward/back buttons at the same time, you enter a more advanced 7 band EQ mode.

All joking aside, I’m sure not many of you will seriously be considering purchasing one of these to carry around on your shoulders on your next trip. At 10.1lbs (without batteries), it’ll take up a considerable amount of your baggage allowance. That said – it is the perfect companion for a road trip or a day at the beach.

The iMT800 MIX retails for $299.95, which is about $100 cheaper than a comparable portable system.

There are a couple of minor things I would have wanted to see on the unit – The iPod control is very basic, you can only play/pause and skip tracks. At this price point, a full iPod control would have been nicer. I would have also liked to see a video output on the unit. Other than those minor gripes, I’m very impressed with the iMT800. Sound is fantastic and I love the looks – this thing really screams “loud”.

The iMT800 MIX Digital Boombox is available directly from Altec Lansing or as a pre-order from

Daily gear deal – Energizer Energi To Go iPod Battery Charger shipped for $7

Today’s daily gear deal passed through Gadling a month ago, but recently dropped to the silly low price of just $7.

The Energizer Energi to Go Battery charger is compatible with the iPhone (1st gen and 3g), the 4th gen iPod nano and the 1st and 2nd gen iPod touch.

The device is the epitome of simplicity – you pop 2 AA batteries in it (included), plug your iPhone or iPod into the dock, and let it charge.

2 Energizer Lithium batteries should be able to provide 3 full charges for an iPod nano, 2 full charges for the iPod Touch and one full charge for an iPhone.

The product weighs less than 2 ounces, and the dock connector folds into the unit, making it perfect for carrying in your bag for that not so unlikely event that your iPhone or iPod is drained by the time you get home.

This product normally retails for as much as $40, but is trying to get rid of them for just $7! That nice low price even includes free shipping, so you can’t really afford not to pick one up.