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Messages - Babyfacemagee

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1
(Hint, it's much more than just digital money)

Up until a few months ago, like a lot of people I'd heard of 'Bitcoin' and 'cryptocurrency' but frankly while it seemed mildly interesting, I didn't feel any overwhelming urge to figure out how to get some or use it.  It sounded like a less secure, new fangled, roundabout way of paying for things 'electronically' and since so few places accept them for payment vs. the dollar...I didn't see the point. Why bother, right?

Wrong. Boy was I wrong. Because what I didn't understand...and most of you reading this probably don't either...is that many of these new 'cryptocurrencies' that we see in the news are not 'currencies' at all...they are actually a new technology utilizing a structure called the blockchain that are creating the next version of the internet, an internet 3.0 right now...and the vast majority of people have no idea this is going on.  How is that you ask?  Because many of these digital 'coins' are actually more like programming languages that let you build decentralized applications.  What the heck is that you ask?  Let me explain.

Let's say you want to buy a product off of Ebay, or Amazon like a pair of shoes.  Or perhaps you want to rent a room for a weekend through Airbnb, or get a car ride to the airport through Uber.  All of these businesses utilize a middleman that you have to pay a fee to for their service.  Think about it. You buy something from Ebay or Amazon and they take their little cut out of the seller's gross.  You book a room through airbnb or a car from uber and again...they take a little cut out of the seller's piece or charge a fee to the buyer...either way there's a middleman.

But what if you could get rid of the middle man?  What if there was some kind of company that did each of these things...sold goods..rented homes...drove you around....and there was no middle man?   What if transactions were peer to peer...you to the seller direct...without the middle man's fee?  Well that is exactly what the blockchain allows programmers to do.  Create decentralized applications, businesses, markets, etc.  It does this by utilizing the blockchain as a way of keeping everyone honest.  How?  Well, this video does a nice job of explaining it. 


But the important thing to realize is that what we are looking at here is basically the dawn of a brand new internet.  Just like in 1992-94 nobody could have predicted that Amazon or Uber or Facebook or Google could become the behemoths we see today.  Twenty years from now people are going to look back and say the same thing about decentralized, blockchain based companies that will be just as big...or bigger.

It's very likely we'll have decentralized search engines without advertising, we'll have decentralized selling with brand new 'amazons' or 'ebays'. We'll have decentralized banking without the bank taking fees and we'll have virtually every kind of business you can imagine from insurance to education to manufacturing to distribution and it will be done through decentralized applications and companies that basically 'live' on the internet and don't require a middle man taking a fee.

Once you understand this concept the next thing to understand is that the cryptocurrencies that we see today...and the new ones being introduced...are all representative of different kinds of decentralized  businesses and these digital 'coins' are being used to fund the development of these businesses. Now there are some like Bitcoin and Litecoin that are still just digital money.   But others like Ethereum, Golem, Stratis, EOS, Factom and others each represent a new type of decentralized company or platform that are part of this new internet 3.0.  And in order to use any of these companies or platforms you'll have to know how to use these new 'digital currencies'.

Some of these new kinds of decentralized companies are already in operation.  For instance http://steemit.com is a hybrid of reddit and facebook where you use Steem coins as a way of rewarding content.  Instead of Zuckerberg and staff at FB choosing what to show you...it's more democratic and the use of Steem coin rewards content makers.

So how do I begin getting into this world?  What's the first baby step I can take? Open a Coinbase account.   

Coinbase is the oldest and most reliable and safe of the online wallets to start buying your first digital 'coins' with.  You can buy a bit of Bitcoin or Ethereum or Litecoin...the three coins they currently support...and begin to learn how to use them.   For example, you can purchase some 'Steem' at Steemit.com by opening an account there and sending some Bitcoin to yourself from Coinbase to Steemit.  Then you'll convert that Bitcoin to Steem to use.

As you become more comfortable with these currencies you might want to open a trading account on a site like Poloniex...which just like a stockmarket trading site allows you to buy, sell or just watch all kinds of digital coins and see their values fluctuate just like a stock.

But frankly the very first step you should take, just so you can get started and start to explore is to open a Coinbase account.

Right now Coinbase has a promotion where they're offering $10 in free Bitcoin to you* if you open an account with just $100, which is exactly what I did to start.  Then you can start playing with it. 

Want to learn even more and become a cryptocurrency expert?  Start reading sites like Cointelegraph.com and Coindesk.com and TheMerkle.com to learn more about all these new currencies and what they do. 

Look, I know it seems intimidating at first.  But trust me, this is not just the future of money, it's the future of the internet being built right in front of our eyes.  This is an amazing opportunity.  Don't miss out like you did the last time.  Just think how many times you've told yourself 'if i had just invested in Facebook or Netflix or Amazon back in 199x...well this is your next chance...because the next version of the internet...the decentralized internet is happening right now, today.  Open your Coinbase account and take your first step into that world today.  You'll thank me later.





*I'll also get a referral bonus but you get your $10 in free Bitcoin and it's the place I recommend to start on your journey to learn about this brand new internet 3.0

2
Xiaomi / Re: Xiaomi mini bluetooth speaker
« on: June 19, 2017, 12:31:47 AM »
It's ok.  Doesn't have much low end.  Clavinetjunkie did a review of it and thought it was just so so.  He liked the Anker Nano better.  It had a flatter response and a bit more bass as well. 

Here's a link to the Anker Nano on Amazon:  https://www.amazon.com/Anker-SoundCore-Bluetooth-Super-Portable-Wireless/dp/B01E6ZLLPW

It's a bit more than the Xiaomi but you get what you pay for.

3
Xiaomi / Re: Anyone else own a Xiaomi Mi Speaker?
« on: June 02, 2017, 02:03:07 AM »
Clavinetjunkie reviewed the smaller one and found it tinny and lacking.  He recommended the similar sized one from Anker instead.

4

Oluv aka ClavinetJunkie finally got around to reviewing a speaker that I've been curious about for the past several months.  That speaker is the Meizu Lifeme TBS30.  Billed as a under $100 speaker that sounds as good as a $300 speaker Oluv puts it to the test and surprise...he loves it...with a few caveats of course (Oluv ALWAYS has caveats).  With a wide, open sound featuring solid bass and clear highs, Oluv actually suggested that this just might be the best speaker in this price range...a new #1.  The build quality is outstanding with a solid aluminum chassis all around that comes in handsome silver or dark grey colors.  So where's the rub?  Well it seems that the low end has a bit of gating, that causes a breathing or unnatural sound compression when at low volumes.  At louder volumes it isn't very noticeable so this is an outstanding speaker as long as you're not looking for very low level listening.  The other glitch he found was the battery low indicator which seems to start beeping even when the speaker has another 1.5 hours of life left.  This beeping went on far too long but the good news is that it 'might' be fixable with a software update...but we don't know if that is coming or not.  As long as the speaker has full power or is plugged in you won't hear the battery warning beep so i'll leave it up to you to decide if you want this stellar sounding speaker or not.  I've included a link below to Aliexpress where you can pick one up for$64.99 presently.



https://www.amazon.com/BISSELL-Natural-Sweep-Sweeper-92N0A/dp/B001GL1NXU/ref=pd_sbs_60_1?_encoding=UTF8&pd_rd_i=B001GL1NXU&pd_rd_r=VT6P53MZ4WFJ4MC86B0M&pd_rd_w=mwQn3&pd_rd_wg=xBgnc&psc=1&refRID=VT6P53MZ4WFJ4MC86B0M

5

Arguably the best reviewer of bluetooth speakers on Youtube or anywhere else, Oluv also known as ClavinetJunkie unboxes and compares the JBL Flip 4 to a number of other speakers including the JBL Flip 3, the Charge 3 and the Onyx Mini.  Not surprisingly the Flip 4 is an improvement on the former model Flip 3 with deeper bass, better highs and a fuller, richer sound.  The Flip 4 also improves on its predecessor by now being fully waterproof.  We've included both the first look as well as Flip 3 vs. Flip 4 videos above so watch them and let us know what you think in the comments below. Will you be buying a JBL Flip 4?  We'll leave a link below to purchase from JBL.




6
Thanks for sharing your experience and the reviews. 

7
Xiaomi / Re: Anyone else own a Xiaomi Mi Speaker?
« on: February 23, 2017, 01:22:06 AM »
It's not just the case.  According to just every reviewer out there the more recent metal cased Xiaomi Mi speaker has much better bass response and better sound overall.  They really stepped it up with this newer model, hence why it's become so popular.  It is a bit more expensive however, usually in the $35-$45 range depending on where you buy it.

8

JBL introduced several new and updated products at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas the first week of January, 2017.  Among these are updates including the new Pulse 3, the Flip 4 and a new product altogether called the BassPro Go.   The video above highlights some of the new features of the Pulse 3 which include IPX7 waterproofing, 360 sound, new improved JBL Connect and greatly improved lighting effects.

Below we have the Flip 4 introduced (starts at 30 sec mark) including IPX 7 waterproofing, improved JBL Connect which lets you connect up to 100 other JBL Connect speakers (pretty cool!).  We also have improved sound (wattage and details still to be released) as well and all kinds of cool colors and designs.  The Flip 4 will be priced under $100 and will be available this spring.


Finally below we see a brand new product by JBL called the BassPro Go.  This is a really interesting product that doubles as both a subwoofer for your car or home and then can be disconnected and operated independently as a portable speaker (similar in size to the JBL Extreme).  It features a 140mm inch woofer and a pair of passive radiators as well as two 40mm smaller full range drivers.   There's also IPX7 waterproofing and JBL Connect functionality so this speaker can really do everything!  It's kind of a JBL Extreme that can also double as a subwoofer for your car which is awesome and kills two birds with one stone.  Pricing will be $599.95 and the Bass Pro Go will be available this summer.  These are some pretty awesome updates and we're excited to try them out in person and get some reviews up here at BluetoothSpeakerForum.com as soon as they're available.



Finally, JBL has at least temporarily dropped the price of the Charge 3 to $129.95 so grab one on Amazon here while they got em!

9

Samsung has introduced a new member of its Level Box line of bluetooth speakers, the Level Box Slim.  Featuring 8 watts of power in a IPX7 water proof package  (30 minutes submerged up to 1 meter) with slim form factor, the Level Box Slim features 30 hours of battery life and has an optional bicycle mount as well. The company says it features impressive audio quality (we'll see in our testing) as well as conference call capability with its built-in mic. Perhaps most unique, it comes with a built-in stand and of course is available in several colors.  It's a pocketable speaker too with measurements of 148.4 x 79 x 25.1-milimeters and weighs 236 grams.  Pricing is unknown but the Level Box Slim will be available at major retailers and Amazon this spring.



10

The Consumer Electronics Show is one of the biggest events of the year for the bluetooth speaker industry.  As expected it's where many companies choose to introduce their latest speakers to the world and this year is no exception.  In Las Vegas this past week Sony introduced not one but FOUR new speakers to its Extra Bass line including several models which include light effects. 

Starting at the bottom of the price ladder we have the XBS-10 which is a small, super portable mono speaker that features one driver plus a passive radiator in a design that is similar to the Anker Soundcore Mini.  It offers some cool extra features though such as the ability to connect up with another XB-10 to create a stereo pair as well water resistance and 16 hours of playback.  Moving up the line we have the XB-20, XB-30 and XB-40 which all feature two drivers plus passive radiators. 

What makes each different from each other are the size of the drivers, the wattage and the complexity of the new lighting effects each produces.  The XB20 has lights around the edge, the XB30 has additional strobes while the XB40 adds LED on the speaker cone itself.  Sony claims the top two models produce 'club-like' lighting effects with multicolor patterns ranging from pure white to rainbow that can pulsate with the music.  More details are expected to be released closer to their release in the spring of 2017 and we'll have them for you when they do.  We're super eager to hear the sound quality of these new speakers and how they compare to the competition.


11

We want to wish everyone a Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah and Happy New Year!

Now that the holidays are here, many major retailers are holding their annual'After Holidays', 'End Of Year' and 'New Year's' deals and specials for online shoppers for anything related to technology and for non-tech categories as well such as household items, clothes and more.  These are some of the deepest discounts and sales of the year as stores try to clear inventory before Dec 31st.  This is a great chance get great deals on all sorts of gifts and items you've been putting off to buy, just waiting for those 'best of' sales and discounts.  We've included links below to some of the most well-known large online sale participants so use these links to check out the great deals and enjoy saving some cash!. 








12
I own a Charge 3 and I've heard Bose Soundlinks many times.  I would recommend you check out the iSoundbar.  For about $36 it blows the Bose away and is better than the JBL Flip and comparable with the Charge 3 in many ways.  While the bass is not quite as deep as the Charge 3 the 3d sound option gives it a stereo separation and openness that the JBL just can't compete with. 

http://bluetoothspeakerforum.com/index.php?topic=66.0

Another great budget speaker is the Xiaomi Mi.  Both of these by the way are highly recommended by ClavinetJunkie, who is one of the best bluetooth speaker reviewers on Youtube.  I own both the iSoundbar and the Xiaomi Mi and can attest they are amazing values and sound as good as speakers costing 2-3x as much.  The Xiaomi Mi will in particular shock you when you hear the full bodied sound...even bass...coming out of such a small, pocketable speaker.

https://www.zapals.com/original-xiaomi-micro-sd-aux-in-hands-free-stereo-pocket-1500mah-3-8v-bluetooth-speaker.html


13
Thanks for your post Joe and welcome to the forum.  So I wanted to ask you if you had any particular favorite bluetooth speakers and if so what do you think are the strengths/weaknesses of them.

14


Xiaomi stormed the bluetooth speaker world this past year with its amazing pencil box Xiaomi Mi hit the market.  Raved about by reviewers such as ClavinetJunkie, Javi's Boombox, Jim's Review Room, Cnet, PortableAudio and more it features amazing bass response and solid mid-range and highs in a small, sleek metal body the size of a pencil box.  Available in three colors here in the U.S.; gold, blue and pink, we typically see it priced at between $39-$60 but it's on sale now for the lowest price we've ever seen with free shipping as well...just $32 at the link below.   Also for sale are the Xiaomi Mini which typically sells for $15...now on sale for $9.99 and also the Xiaomi Round speaker also on sale for $21.45.  The older Xiaomi Square Box speaker is also on sale for $14.75, but we think the 'Original Xiaomi' speaker on the far left above sounds better.  We've placed links below to the page so make sure you grab a few to give as gifts while the sale is going on.


15
It's a bit more expensive but the Denon Envaya Mini that I have seems to stay on in idle mode as long as either my computer or phone are connected.  It can sit there for hours and not turn off as long as Bluetooth is connected or the battery dies.  The Envaya Mini is a great sounding speaker and considered to be on the higher end.  Price ranges from about $100 when it's on sale to the normal list of $149.   The one downside of the Envaya Mini however is that it doesn't have the greatest battery life...gets just a few hours when operating and some more when no sound is playing.  If you have it plugged in to the Echo or elsewhere though through it's microusb port it won't make a difference since it'll be getting power from that.

Another speaker that stays on til you turn it off that I own is the Music Angel, which I review on this site on one of the earlier pages.  It's about $26 and you can buy it on Amazon here:  https://www.amazon.com/MUSIC-ANGEL-Bluetooth-Technology-Diaphragm/dp/B01ERP05FI/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&qid=1472711700&sr=8-4&keywords=music%20angel%20speaker&tag=vglnk-c1559-20

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