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Pick of the Camera Reviews

(Click the pictures for reviews & links) 

ACTION CAMS

Yi 2 - Best Budget 4K 

Gitup Git2 (My Pick)

Xiaomi Yi

 

 
DASH-CAMS (CAR DVRs)
 
A119
DR02 D - Best Budget Dual Cam
Yi

Yi Ultra 2.7K
   
    MINI CAMERAS
Mobius (also works as a Dashcam)
Polaroid Cube+
    HELMET CAMERA
Drift Ghost X

My favourite USB battery power Pack

This is the excellent USB power pack I use when I travel.

2 x 2.1amp outputs. 8400mAh capacity.

Two digit Led display shows battery level

 

What SD CARD should I buy?

If you want an SD Card for your camera - these are the ones I use and recommend. 

I'd strongly recommend not to buy any SD cards off ebay - I've heard about too many issues with counterfeit cards - often sold on by unwitting resellers. My inbox regularly gets messages from people who bought a £150 camera then cheaped out and bought a £3 memory card on ebay - Then when it doesn't worth they blame the camera! It doesn't make any sense. Good memory is cheaper than it's ever been - see the links above.

A lot of HD cameras will not work properly with cards larger than 32GB (cards over 32GB are usually SDXC rather than the SDHC standard used by 32GB cards. SDXC cards use the ex-FAT system rather than FAT32 - in short they are a different standard). - so don't just buy the biggest card you can afford - read the specs in the manual to see what it accepts.

UK & US LINKS & PRICES BELOW

RECOMMENDED CARDS (for action cams - see dashcams below)

CLASS 10 UHS-1 CARDS (For HD Cameras)

 

U3 CARD (For 4K cameras)

 

 

SPECIAL DASHCAM CARDS

The SD card in a dashcam is re-written over, more frequently than in other types of cameras. Some manufacturers void their guarantee if an SD card was used in a dashcam. So, no surprise, there are special High Endurance SD cards made just for dashcams...here's some.

 

VERY IMPORTANT. These links take you to the product, however Amazon have three different ways of selling. There's Amazon Direct - This means that you are only dealing with Amazon themselves, then there's other sellers that use Amazon's facilities - these show as Fulfilled By Amazon and finally there's Market Place sellers that advertise on Amazon, but operate independently.  I strongly recommend that you only use the first...the Amazon Direct - Sold By Amazon option. Even if it appears that you are paying a couple of £/$ more it is more than likely you are comparing the price of a real item against the price of a fake.

To give you an idea of the extent of the fake goods problem. In a 2016 survey by Apple - 90% of the 'Apple' chargers sold through Amazon - using the other the two methods..which includes the "Fulfilled by Amazon" option -  were found to be counterfeit....90%! 

 
Friday
Apr272018

Cronixie - The eye-catching edge-lit clock kit

I enjoy putting together the occasional kit - especially when it ends up making something that can't be bought in any shop that's both useful and engaging.
  
The edge-lit Cronixie clocks tick all those boxes and a few more besides. In the video below, I assemble the kit as well as demonstrate all the features of the clock. If after watching it you decide you'd like to buy one for yourself, there are links below the video. 
     
   
Cronixie Kits on ebay (Affiliated Links) 
Cronixie-M
UK   DE   US   NL   CA   AU   AT   FR   BE   ES   
     
Cronixie-S
UK   DE   US   NL   CA   AU   AT   FR   BE   ES  
     
Cronixie Manufacturer’s Website (German) 
     
Cronixie Operating Instructions Translated into English
   
Notice - This is an independent review. I purchased my kit at full price via ebay.
   
Lixie Displays: 
If you are interested in a more DIY experience - here's a link to Conor Nishijima's LIXIE displays
   
Wednesday
Apr252018

Pocket Rockers

In the late 1980s all the cool kids were wearing mini Phil Collins tapes as jewellery - well at least that's what Fisher Price hoped would happen.
   
  
Thanks to Databits for the tip on the hidden Pocket Rockers screw 
Pocket Rockers Commercials:  Original  Follow-up
Pictures of the Bandai Micro Cartridge are from the Museum of Obsolete Media 
List of Pocket Rockers Titles
List of Pocket Rockers Players & Accessories 
Wednesday
Apr182018

Laser Games

I've been fascinated by Vector games for as long as I can remember. I can still recall the first time I saw an Asteroids game in a seaside arcade, and that would have been back in the very early 1980s. Naturally I own a couple of Vectrex machines and know that they were working on a colour version shortly before they folded. Well now over thirty years later, I get to experience a little bit of what that would have been like - on a screen on the wall of my garage. It's just a shame it doesn't come across well on video.
   
   
Here's a link to the Laserdock Software featured in the video.  http://www.wickedlasers.com/laseros
You can buy a laser projector like the one I used on ebay: https://ebay.to/2H88CPw
(This is an Affiliated Link)

 

Please consider this as an extra video. You’ll see that it was shot back in February and initially I scrapped it as I wasn’t happy with the way the laser images came across on camera. I’ve since added some sections and significantly re-edited it, however it’s still not the best. However as I mentioned in the video - it is what it is. Also the projector is a low-end model and no amount of software tweaking can fix that - it’s all about the hardware - if you want better results then you have to spend the money. But do you really want to spend a thousand pounds to play these games, well that’s up to you, but as far as I’m concerned this is the end of my experiment. Also if you’re wondering about the other features of the software - download it and try it for yourself, it’s free. 

Thursday
Apr122018

3M Sound Page - Recordable Paper

I've been on the lookout for one of these machines for a while, and while they do occasionally turn up for sale on ebay, I'm so glad I managed to acquire this particular one as the unique accompanying material weaves quite a tale. Hearing non-commercial recordings from the past is always a bit eerie and the subject matter of these is something that is going to stay with me for quite a while.
   

 

Thursday
Apr052018

Show 'N Tell

The Show 'N Tell is a vintage multimedia educational children's toy imported from the US.  It's a shame that age hasn't been kind to the programs, however I still had a lot of fun making this video and I think you'll enjoy it too. 
 

 

Thursday
Mar292018

Random Number Machine

In this quick video I take a look at a stand-alone random number generator that uses Nixie tubes. The ebay advert for this suggested that the buyer could gut it for the tubes. When I saw that I knew that I had to rescue this unusual little piece of electronics history.   
Thursday
Mar222018

The Record Runner

Here's a quick video about the Record Runner, that little VW van that drives around a record, both playing and destroying it at the same time.  
However I know that some people will be more interested to see this video features the comedy outro puppets. If you just want to see the outro on it's own - here's a link to the video https://youtu.be/NvNPMlATA9g I also updated the merchandise with a new design of mug https://teespring.com/stores/techmoan-merch
I'd recommend watching it before going on to read the rest of this post that explains where the idea for it came from.
  
First I should mention that all the interactions you see with the smart speaker were real - this is how it actually responded at the time, it wasn't dubbed in later.
   
The idea for this video came as I was watching Episode 1 of Series 2 'Hap and Leonard' on Amazon Prime. I asked my phone to Shazam a song being played near the beginning that I couldn't remember the name of. It was 'Let the Bass Go' by The D.O.C. I then tried to get my HomePod to play this because I thought it would be a good way to test the bass reproduction. 
  
However despite repeated requests I couldn't get it to play the track I wanted. It kept wanting to play AC/DC. I tried spelling it, shouting it, talking slower, quicker, sarcastically and in various accents, however the only way I could get it to play was when as a last resort I just asked for the track name without the artist. . However when I tried this again later, it had never heard of the track again. 
  
This experience demonstrating the worst of the modern age, felt exactly like the kind of thing that the puppets should demonstrate. 

 

Thursday
Mar152018

Sound Burger & the clones

A video about the Audio Technica Sound Burger (AKA Mister Disc) - a portable battery-powered record player from 1983 that looks like a cheap child's toy, but looks can be deceiving. 
  
In the video I replace the belts, as well as take a look at a Crosley clone of the Soundburger, The Revolution - or it's more than likely that it's really a clone of a Crosley clone of the Soundburger.

 

Thursday
Mar082018

LED Watches & the Pulsar P3

It's been a while since I made a video about wristwatches, this one focuses on the early LED digital models. There are few things in this world less fashionable than a LED watch, which is exactly why they might have finally become fashionable again - everyone loves an underdog. 
   

In this video I take a look at the Pulsar P3, a timepiece that went from riches to rags and then back to being relatively affordable again. 

Resources 

Pulsar
Other LED Watches
Old Magazine Articles from the early 1970s
LED PULSARS ON EBAY (Affiliated links)
UK   US   DE   CA   NL   AU 
***All eBay links are Affiliated*** 
Sunday
Mar042018

Spinbox - The DIY record player

In this video I'm assembling a Spinbox - another of my unwise late-night Kickstarter purchases.  On paper it seemed to be right up my street, a self-assembly kit and a record player, both things I usually enjoy, however...

Thursday
Feb222018

A vinyl record you play backwards

A quick look at an unusual record that was recorded inside-out because it sounds better that way.
   

Purchased from here

(This is not an affiliated link and I paid for my record).