Portable Podcasting Setup For Travelers: Audio-Technica ATR-2100 Microphone Review

Those of you looking for a simple portable microphone setup out of the all the (complex) audio options available will want to take a close look at the Audio-Technica ATR-2100. The ATR-2100 is versatile, durable, and provides good sound in a portable body.

You can watch my full review of the Audio-Technica ATR-2100 in the video above.

Audio-Technica ATR2100-USB Cardioid Dynamic USB/XLR Microphone
Audio-Technica - Accessory
$79.00 - $16.00

Thule’s Subterra 34L Backpack Tries To Blend Hiking Design With Tech Gear

There are a lot of great electronics backpacks, an excellent choice of hiking bags, but few travel backpacks that blend the features of both. Thule’s Subterra 34L is a good attempt at doing so, giving travelers a large, empty front pocket with one dedicated for organization on the front. A high-quality backpack walking the line between travel styles, the Subterra 34L is a unique choice for select travelers.

You can watch my full review in the video above or read on.

Who’s This Bag For?

Thule has designed the Subterra 34L with a primary, top loading main compartment. It’s large but looks deceptively small for a 34 liter bag. Inside there’s an option packing cube, a laptop pocket, plus two size zippers to get at both without opening the top. Photographers or those of you with a lot of bulky gear will enjoy the space but top loading is not entirely convenient for trips through airport security.

Thule Subterra (3203440) Backpack 34L, Dark Shadow
Thule, Inc. - Sports
$159.95 - $24.65

Still, if you have one larger electronic like a DSLR camera but want room for a laptop plus a few days of clothing, the Subterra 34L fits the specific niche well.

Organizing The Basics

On the front of the bag, the thoughtful front pocket is very good at maximizing its use and limited space. Again, from the techie or hiking perspective, the Subterra 34L is an in between, not leaning too far in either direction. It doesn’t have the pockets of the Scansmart 1900 for instance. Travelers who’ve got as much electronic gear as I do will find the organizational space lacking. (A Grid-It might help here.) Trying to stuff the front pocket to your liking also doesn’t work, since when loaded it pushes into the main compartment. Stuffing the top loading main compartment works much better, provided the front isn’t very full.

thule subterra 34l review

For a straight hiking bag, the Subterra 34L is ideal for a day trip or two, but really isn’t a full fledged hiking pack. Thule has consciously limited the size to stay under most airlines’ requirements for carry-on.

Perfect For 30

The Thule Subterra 34L works best when it’s only full to about 30 of those liters. Such a precise physical design is beautiful (the construction of this bag is simply elegant) but isn’t well suited to be stuffed to capacity. In that case, you’re better off looking at larger bags or more specific ones for your particular travel needs.

Still, the Subterra 34L is a few tweaks away from being one of my favorites. Switching the design from top to front loading, with a separate laptop sleeve, and larger organizational front pocket would be my personal modifications. Then again, most people don’t travel with an office on their back. For those of you who travel light and want versatile bag with lots of storage space, I highly suggest a close look at the Subterra 34L.

MagBuddy’s Wireless Charger Is The Slimmest Way To Quickly Charge Your Phone While Driving

Most wireless car chargers mounted on your windshield or phone replace the charging wire with two very inconvenient arms to hold your mobile device hostage. The MagBuddy gets around this common design inconvenience by using a powerful magnet to keep your phone in place plus fast charging.

Although you might not immediately see the benefits of paying a little more for a car charger, they quickly become apparent after a few rides. You can watch the video above for my full review or read on.

Ditches The Arms

The primary advantage of desktop wireless chargers is being able to quickly grab your phone but most made for the car use rubber-lined arms you have to awkwardly pry open. It’s a few seconds every time in and out of the car so, instead, MagBuddy uses a flat, thin, and surprisingly powerful magnetic roughly the size of a small coin. The magnet is about as thin as a sheet of good paper and can stuck directly on your phone or the case.

One thing you’ll have to remember is to center the magnet (not the phone) on the charger but after one or two uses it becomes second nature. Even on bumpy mountain roads the MagBuddy never lets it seem like your phone is in any danger of falling off.

naztech magbuddy

Percent Per Minute

The other benefit of the MagBuddy is how much faster it’s able to charge Qi-enabled phones (pretty much all newer phones that support wireless charging). Charging up to 10W is throttled but for some average real-world results, you’ll get at least a percent per minute of battery life on an iPhone X. Other phones will vary but higher-end flagship phones should be able to absorb electrical charge at autobahn speeds, if not faster.

The Price Of Slim

Clearly the MagBuddy sits well ahead of the competition, roughly 2-3 times the price of most competitors with arms and sluggish charging. Given how much time many of you likely spend getting in and out of your car on road trips short and long, $60 for the MagBuddy seems a reasonable investment for the time savings. Not to mention reducing the risk of dropping your phone every time it interacts with your wireless car charger.

London Has The Craziest Path Ever To Win The Best City To Visit Of 2019!

The Best City to Visit Travel Tournament sponsors Reborn Rubber congratulate the winner London! To celebrate, they’re giving away one of their recycled polyester slim wallets. You can enter right here and a random winner will be chosen on April 25th! [What is this?]

best city to visit 2019 complete bracket

Every year when The Best City to Visit Travel Tournament comes to an end, many people claim the result was destined from the Round of 64. Looking at this year’s winner though, it was hardly a given London would be voted by you The Best City to Visit of 2019!

London barely made it past Lisbon in a tie-breaker and had to go through 4 years of Final Four loses to finally win it all with your votes. Those of you who entered the year’s tournament, don’t get discouraged, you’ll have plenty of time to regroup for 2020. (Nominations will begin in February, sign up here not to miss them.) Congratulations again to Brian, who originally chose London, and wins $300 to spend at the Apple online store.

Party Time

For the past 8 years, I have visited the winning city which means London I’ll see you sometime soon. I’m thinking this fall, bringing a few friends along, and throwing a party in the city! Let me know if you live in London or will be visiting later this year and would like to join. Feel free to send me an email, we had a lot of fun last year in Granada.

Thank you again everyone for participating! One thing I love about the Best City contest is I never know where I’ll be going and it’s like a surprise travel plan you make for me every year. Cheers to that and London in 2019.

How To Remove Stickers From Passports

Some airports (I’m looking at you Istanbul) take liberties with your passport, slapping stickers on them at various security checks in between gates, leaving your precious travel identification with adhesive residue that’s hard to remove. When I posted the picture below, many of you left helpful suggestions on how to remove the sticker residue. One that stood out to me in particular was an olive oil trick, which I tried in the video above.

passport stickers

Basic Steps

First, remove the sticker as best you can with your fingernail or a plastic card from your wallet. Once you’re done getting the largest, easiest pieces of sticker removed, dab you fingertip in olive oil. It doesn’t take much, just rub it into the passport where there’s stubborn sticky stuff enough to cover it entirely.

Now that you’ve done that, take a paper towel and wipe off the residue. Theoretically. As you can see from my attempts, after multiple applications, this trick worked… but not entirely. (Although my passport was super shiny, a nice side effect.)

Apply Soon

What I noticed is newer stickers were relatively easy to remove with olive oil, but the older gunk seems it will be one with the passport forever. So, if this passport junk leftover from security stickers annoys you, it’s best to remove at and any baggage tags as you can after arrival at your destination this olive oil trick, which is also unintentionally vegan.

Do you have any tricks for keeping your passport stickers? Let me know in the comments below!

Jabra Move Wireless Review: Headphones For City Travelers

The Jabra Move Style Edition wireless headphones are focused on precise sound and portable design, ideal for travelers who spend most of their days in urban jungles. You can watch my full review above or read on for more.

Made For Mobility

Jabra’s headphone designers should get an award, their entire lineup is elegant. (Or as they told me at CES, beautiful and function.) The Move Style Edition are no different, they’re sleek, punching above their cost to look much more expensive than their $99 price tag suggests. Tangibly, they don’t weigh much either, only 150 grams (5 ounces) and are hardly perceptible when worn, with one major caveat I’ll get to soon.

As you can see below, even opening the box was created to be an experience before you put the Move Style on.

Also, a nice inclusion is the headphone jack so although the Move have 14 hours of Bluetooth wireless battery life, using the cable can extend that indefinitely while plugged in. (The headphone cable won’t charge the battery but you can use it to listen over a wire.)

Architectural Trade-offs

All of this thought into physical build means the emphasis on it results in a few significant trade-offs for some people. Small ear cups on a tight headband keep the Move Style on the smaller side, staying put on your head but also putting pressure on your ears. Since the Move Style’s ear cups sit directly on your ear’s cartilage, they become very uncomfortable over a short time for some people.

jabra move style edition

Those of you who don’t find Beats Studio3 a pain in the ear to wear probably will do fine with the Move. But if other over-ear headphones that rest directly on your ears have bothered you in the past, I would keep the receipt for these until you’re sure either way.

Simple hardware is stylish but not making the Move fold-able was a weird choice in design. A static construction was probably to keep costs under $100 – yet given the emphasis on portability (it’s even in the name) coming up with a way to pack these into a smaller package would have been worth a higher price tag. With the Jabra Move Style Edition, it’s either around your neck or awkwardly stuffed in a bag, and no, it doesn’t come with a case.

Good On The Move

The Jabra Move Style Edition are excellent headphones on the go in the best of cities, but not in storage. In this price rage though it’s not easy to find such exceptional sound quality – comparable to the Audio-Technica SR30BT, a strong competitor that’s slightly more comfortable to wear.

The SR30BT don’t fold either demonstrating that most $100 over-ear headphones come down to the nuances of physical design. As for the sound quality, not to mention the incredible embedded microphone, the Jabra Move Style Edition is a good choice for many, but not designed for everyone.

About Anil Polat

foxnomad aboutI'm the blogger and computer security engineer who writes foXnoMad while on a journey to visit every country in the world. I'll show you the tips, tricks, and tech you can use to travel smarter. Read More

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