Tag Archives: Avantree

Avantree Cell Phone Clip Stand review

When I received this stand I immediately started seeing the potential of this simple but unique device. As someone who used their phone all the time for taking photos, video and video calls the clip stand has so many uses. The only limitation is your imagination. Its very handy for night time use to hold your phone while you sleep, which is one of the many uses I found for it. Its not just limited to phones that it can hold obviously. Like I say, use your imagination. For television addicts, it could even hold your T.V remote so that you don’t lose it and have it close by.

Using it frees up your hands and desk space and helps reduce neck strain. 360 degree rotating, and flexible arms makes it easy to position the phone at the ideal distance and angle for convenient viewing.
The clip stand is made of white and blue sturdy material. The large clip base for stable mounting without vibrations; strong and bendy arms secure your smartphone to prevent falling or moving around.
It’s perfect for any location you can clamp it on to. Perfect for watching movies & enjoying music in the bedroom, kitchen, gym and office.
Adjustable clip height. The height of the fixed section can be adjusted from 0 to 2.75″. It is compatible with most tables and desks of different thicknesses.
Perfect compatibility. Compatible with cell phones from 3.5 to 6.3 inches.
I am really please to own a phone clip, and given the quality of the build, I can see me using it for a long time.

Pop over to http://www.avantree.com/ and check out the phone clip and the rest of their great products.

Avantree Sacool Pro Bluetooth headphones review

These are a great set of headphones with serious bass and volume

Avantree Sacool Pro Bluetooth Headphones review and discount code

Avantree logo

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When my Avantree Sacool Pro noise isolating headphones arrived I was surprised at how small and slim the packaging was. I was expecting a larger box for some reason. That was a pleasant surprise.

On unboxing I found A nice little black sturdy carry case with the Avantree name embossed on it, the cool looking red and black Sacool Pro Bluetooth headphones,mini USB cable, spare buds, instructions and the normal Avantree advertising for some of their other products, and their warranty / support card.

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Being a man, I jumped straight in without even reading any of the instructions of reviews.
having already used a pair of Jaybird Freedom headphones in the past I already knew how to pair these. Simply hold the power button for several seconds and the little LED on the headset flashes blue / red. I love the fact they auto pair. No need for pairing codes.

I love my music loud. I cranked up my normal 80’s stuff on my Galaxy Note 3. Wow, was I in for a shock. Compared to all the other headphones I have used, which include Bose, Beats, Jaybirds, as well as stock Samsung or Apple ones, these have such a deep bass to them. It took a bit for me to get used to that much bass. I love a nice deep bass tone to my songs and to be able to hear the bass guitars but sometimes, on some songs, it would be nice to be able to reduce the bass a bit, so I ended up using Poweramp which has a built in equaliser. Saying that though, most songs I listen to these Sacool Pro’s have a lovely sound. One thing I will say I have noticed is the middle tones seem to be less. These have nice bass and treble but the middle needs a bit more to it, but its only a bit, in my opinion. Some people may prefer it like that. Another thing I have notice is how loud these get. I mean LOUD!! So loud that the were distorting the songs a bit. Thankfully that was just for the test as it was at a volume I would not listen to normally. Mind you, listening to Simple Mind’s Don’t You Forget About Me was fun. Hearing the bass drum nearly throbbing my head as did the bass line on Blurred Lines by Robin Thicke.
I got my wife to test them out, while we were in the garden today and I could not hear a thing from the headset, even though her head was bobbing away to the beat. Non of that annoying over bleeding of the treble that you hear when you sit to someone on the bus or train.
The design of these headphones is really nice. They are so light, only 18g. Some headphones hurt after a while, but I have not had that problem with these. While I am doing stuff on my laptop I have my Sacool Pro’s paired with my laptop and have my 80’s music blasting though them. I could be on the laptop for a few hours easy but there is no irritation from the headphone. No achy ears. In fact, just today, I had been working in the garden with them on, and after finishing off and coming back indoors, I could not find them. I went back out and checked the garden and the shed with no luck. I did eventually find them. They were still hanging round my neck from where I left them ( so I didn’t lose them ) when I took them off. They are so light I didn’t even notice them there.
They are a nice design Black with a red border and red buttons and wire. Very stylish.

Capabilities

The Avantree Sacool Pro incorporates Bluetooth 4.0, which from what I can gather uses less energy so should not eat your battery like some bluetooth devices do. This means listening to music you can get up to 8 hours, and talk time you can get up to 8.5 hours. In my opinion thats really good for headphones such as these. Ive had some bluetooth audio devices in the past that died after a few hours.
They also support aptX® to compress the audio data stream between the headset and the phone. aptX® significantly reduces the bit rate without affecting audio quality or introducing latency issues. So, with aptX® you can enjoy pure wireless CD-like quality sound whenever and wherever you choose.

You can connect 2 phones to these at the same time. For headphones, I do not see the reason for this unless theres something I am missing. Surely you would only listen to music on your own device or on one device at a time.
They also come with voice prompts. They tell you when you are powering up or off, when you are connected, or disconnected, and when you are pairing. These are the first headphones I have ever known to do this. This sort of thing is becoming a regular feature in a lot of Avantree products such as some of their car kits.

I tested the voice dialling facility of these and it worked perfectly first time. No problems at all.

The Sacool Pro’s will connect to ALL your mobile phones and tablets, and will connect to a Mac ( I am doing that now as I type ). I do not have a Windows pc to test these on but as long as you have a bluetooth adaptor, I would assume it would be fine.
The are a very secure fit and should have no problem staying in place if you are jogging or working out at the gym or doing aerobics as the wire loops over and behind your ears then behind your head.

The cost of these is amazing for what you get. You are getting a really fine pair of bluetooth headphones for only $49.99 ( 33.51 ukp ) at todays rates. My Jaybirds were 3 times that but perform no better that the Sacool Pro’s.

A little bit about Avantree. They are committed to environmental stewardship. Whenever possible, they use recycled and/or naturally bio-degradable materials for packaging and boxing. In manufacturing their products, they adhere strictly to RoHS standards which were enacted to eliminate the use of hazardous substances during production. That has got to be a massive thumbs up for Avantree. Being environmentally aware and doing what they can to help the environment is a huge thing.

Cons

The only thing I can think of for a con is the lack of or reduced middle in the sound. Apart from that theres nothing That I can say bad about these. I love them.

Pros

Where do I start??????

The style, the sound ( bass and treble anyway ), the volume, the comfort, the weight, and definitely the price.

Check them out at the Avantree website here

I have to say apart from the slight lack of middle on these, I love them. They will definitely be one of my go to sets.

Avantree have kindly provided me with a 10% discount code to give to you guys. This is only for the Sacool Pro headphones and will not work on other items. To use the code, please go to the Avantree website and place an order and enter the following discount code 10steAS8PMSA9V27Y40

Video review of the Avantree Force Power Bank charger

Avantree Joytune Bluetooth Handsfree Car Kit with FM Transmitter review

This is an honest review of my experience with the Joytune. I have not been paid for this review.

 

Avantree logo

Avantree Joytune Bluetooth Handsfree Car Kit with FM Transmitter

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This week I received my Avantree Joytune Bluetooth Handsfree Car Kit with FM Transmitter to review.

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It comes complete with the Joytune unit itself, a car adapter, a charge cable to charge from your pc / laptop, and the sun visor clip for the back of the Joytune, along with a 12 month warranty card, quick starter guide, a user manual, and a card from Avantree advertising other products.

After fully charging and powering up the Joytune for the first time I put it into pairing mode by holding down the main button on the device, I was greeted by a rather stern emotionless female voice ( like some sort of dominatrix ) giving me instructions on how to perform the task. Once this is done, it then gives the option on your phones screen to give access to your phone book so that it can identify who’s calling when a call comes in and I assume for voice dialling. Once that was done, off to the car we went to test it on the road.

In the car I clipped the Joytune to my sun visor. I was surprised at how flat it sits given that the clip on the read seemed to stick out quite a bit. I was expecting the visor to be pushed out a bit when in the folded back position.

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As normal when I get a new device I can use to interact with people, I called my best friend to check the call quality. Firstly I tried a call with the sound coming directly through the Joytune. Unlike other car kits I have tested, this pushed the voice through immediately rather than having a 30 second period at the beginning of the call where the other person could not hear anything. Immediately my friend heard me. The call quality was good, even when going along a noisy, bumpy road. The call did not fade out or break up at all. The call was ended easily just by pressing the main button on the unit.

After parking the car up, I paired the Joytune with my car stereo. This is where you may have to have a bit of patience. Not because of anything to do with the Joytune itself but find a channel with the least amount of background hiss or crackle. To connect to your car stereo, just make sure the stereo is on ( obviously ) and press and hold the ‘FM’ button on the side of the Joytune until it gives you the sexy, stern voice telling you its connecting to the FM radio. It tells you what FM channel to tune to. This is where you may need to press the ‘FM’ button a few or several times to retune to different channels until you find one you are happy with. Unfortunately, you are in the hand of the gods ( or rather the dominatrix woman inside the Joytune ) for the channels. If you decide the previous one was better, as far as I am aware you cannot go back to it. Its just whatever random channel the Joytune tells you to pick.

Once tuned in, I decided to try out the music playing side of this product. I sat and selected random songs from my collection. ( all 80’s music as I am a complete 80’s nut ). Every single song I picked came through like cd quality. The only downside was even with my phones volume turned up full, I still had to crank up the car stereos volume quite a bit to get decent volume. I didn’t adjust the Joytune volume as that would make any call coming though too loud, so I just left it. But sound quality itself was spot on. I tried making a call while playing a song and it cut the music off while the call was in progress then resumed again after the call ended.

One thing I forgot about with the Joytune and made me laugh is when I had left the car to got to a shop, came back, and the moment I got in my dominatrix friend shouted at me that I was once again connected to her. This happens automatically. It detects when you get in the car as long as your bluetooth is activated on your phone. How much drain on the Joytune’s battery this has I have yet to discover, but its a good feature. On other car kits I have used in the past I have had to manually connect to it, or double check its connected, which all takes time when all you want to do is get going. The Joytune does that for you and notifies you. Less hassle has got to be a good thing.

For those people who are curious or just a bit geeky in general about these things, here are the specs for the Joytune.

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Up till now, I have had no problems at all with the Joytune and already I think this is the best car kit I have ever used. Believe me, when it comes to gadgets, it takes a lot for me to say that. I am very picky about some stuff.

PRO’s

1: No cables across my dashboard. Thats one thing that after a while irritated me about another car kit transmitter I had, was that to play through the car stereo I had to plug it directly into the AUX socket. I have enough cables already due to sat nav’s and mobile phone charge cables etc. I don’t need any more.

2: It sits nice and flat on my sun visor and also allows the visor to still open up properly. A cheaper car kit I had prevented the visor from opening up fully due to its size so when it was sunny I couldn’t really use the visor, or I had to relocate the car kit and risk poor sound quality on calls.

3: Good sturdy build. This product is well made and feels like it will last a good long time.

 

CON”S

None at all apart from the suggestions below.

A couple of things I would like to see incorporated into the Joytune for future versions is a solar panal ( such as what is on the Avantree Sunday car kit ) so it can be getting charged whenever it is daylight and you have no worries about the battery running out and also the option to change voices for the prompts and not just the language.

Avantree Force review

Avantree logo

 

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The Avantree Force arrived to me with three quarters of a charge already in it, so I charged everything I could until the unit was completely drained. I then placed the Force on charge and waited to see how long it would take to recharge. My other battery pack, which is a Kondor Powerbank takes at least 24 full hours to recharge fully. The Avantree force was still charging this morning after about 10 hours but was a third full. I went out with the family for a few hours and come back to find it was fully charged. So fully charging takes roughly 10-14 hours all out.

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I tested the Force on my Samsung Galaxy Note 3 to see how long it takes to charge. And it was fully charged in a couple of hours. The same time as if I had plugged my Note into the wall charger.

The Avantree Force comes with one built in charge cable with micro USB cable, which folds away conveniently along the length of the device to where the plug itself plugs into a micro USB parking port for storage. Note: this port is just a dummy port meant for the storage of the built in cable and plug.

Avantree Force diagram

You can easily see how much charge is available by the 4 little green lights near the charge ports ranging from 4 lights showing it its fully charged to on light with only 25% left on the Force’s battery. You can check the battery level at any time by touching the touch switch which located on the top edge, for 3 seconds. Its a hidden button but there is a label to show you where it is.

It is Universally compatible with iPad, iPhone, Android, Blackberry, Nook, Kindle etc etc. Basically anything that Can be charged by micro USB or even standard old school fully size USB can be charged by the Avantree Force. Even stuff like bluetooth headsets or Playstation 3 controllers and some Ecigarettes and cameras can be charged by this.

Avantree Force charge image

I have charged a Galaxy s4 2.5 times and my Galaxy Note 3 once and its still got half the battery left. This power pack is out performing the normal Kondor power pack I use, and I though that was a great product.

Avantree Force dimensions

Here are the specs for the Avantree Force

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Pros

A really stylish eye catching power pack that is small enough to stick in you bag when you are out and about and you don’t need to worry about cables as is has the micro USB already built in ready and waiting for you. Imagine sitting it Starbucks making use of their free wifi and then notice your battery is nearly depleted. No worries if you have the Force. Especially if your name is Luke. ( “Use the Force Luke” as Obi Wan Kenobi said in the Star Wars film )

Cons

A couple of things that I think could be changed are that thing I think they should include is some form of carry case or pouch for this as the glossy white plastic could get damaged or scuffed on your bag over time plus the harsh corners could damage your pockets over time if carrying in you jacket.

Even though I love the look of this power pack with its bright green and contrasting Avantree colours and the number 13000 in digital style numbering raised up on the top surface,  I do think that it could be a bit nicer Cosmetically. In its current format looks a bit like an over sized lego brick. I really think they could round the  edges off a bit to make it a bit less harsh looking and a bit more aesthetically pleasing.
Also I would to see a few more USB ports added. Theres enough space on the side to incorporate this, although I do realise this would also mean more drainage on the battery life. But people are now carrying more and more chargeable devices with them more of the time.

I will admit that this battery pack is a bit on the heavy side, especially compared to my Kondor pack but it does have a more powerful battery inside it.

Conclusion

I really nice well made, solid product as I would expect from Avantree that will stop you from worrying if you will run out of battery power. I can see me using the Force for many years to come as long as I don’t need to charge more than 2 devices at the same time with it, which admittedly would be rarely.

If I had to give it makes out of 10, I would give it an 8

For more information on The Force, it can be found here

 

Avantree Cara II, Bluetooth 4.0 aptX handsfree car kit/speakerphone review

Avantree Cara II, Bluetooth 4.0 aptX handsfree car kit/speakerphone

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Having used the Avantree Cara II, Bluetooth 4.0 aptX handsfree car kit/speakerphone for a week now in the car, and using it several times everyday I have found it a total good replacement for my old car kit which was clipped to my sun visor and always got in the way.

The Cara II is a cool, sleek looking little device that will look great on any dashboard. Its simple to fit. It literally only took seconds. Just decide where in the car you want to place it. You will need to have it somewhere close to the car stereo to be able to plug the aux jack into it. Made sure the desired area is clean, dust and grease free. On the magnetic mount peel off the sticky back and firmly press it onto the place you selected. Thats all there is to it. The only other thing is to plug the jack plug into the Cara II and the other end into the aux jack of your car stereo.
One thats done, select aux on the set and when you get a call, the sound comes through your car speakers. This being said, its also one of the annoying things to me as I cannot play the car radio channels at the same time. If the stereo is selected to play radio, I found it turns off the speaker on the Cara II.

Although I have not tried this feature, the Cara II does come with the ability to voice dial ( if its enabled on your phone first ).
The Cara II comes with the ability to have two phones connected at the same time to it, which is really handy if your on a car journey with someone else. This is a neat idea I have not seen on any other handsfree kit before.

One thing that confused my a bit was the two velcro disks stuck together in the pack. Unless I totally missed it, I could not see any mention of these in the enclosed instructions. The only disk shaped thing thats mentioned in the instructions was the magnetic mount, but not the velcro disks.

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After a week of using this in the car I’m more or less happy with it. It looks great, but the cable, gets in the way. When it works correctly, its really good, with good sound and from what I’m told most of the time, by my callers, really good quality at their callers end as well. There is a problem I have had with my Cara II, that bugs me a bit. There have been quite a few times where the Cara II announces that my phone is connected but when I get a call, the people say I sound distant, as if, the speech is going through the mic on the phone rather than the Cara II. Sometimes it does not transfer the audio to the Cara II to go through the car speakers, but stays on the phone ( on Samsungs ) automatically, when a call comes through so I don’t get the sound of the caller, rather I get a very distant voice from my phone trying to be heard until I realise what is happening.
It has been reported by a couple of people Ive rang from the car using the Cara II that it takes sometimes up to 30 seconds for my speech to start going through the Cara. From the call connecting to Cara working fully, speech seems to be picked up very quietly, a bit like its going through the mobile phone mic. Hopefully they will get that sorted for future updates of this device.

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One thing I would suggest is looked at for future updates of this device is the LED light. If the Cara is not directly in front of you at a perfect angle ( which it wouldn’t be if you’re driving, then you cannot see the LED to make sure its still switched on. The light is tiny.
Another thing I would suggest is including some additional magnetic mounts so that they can placed in extra places in case you need to move the Cara or in a second car.

Despite the couple of MINOR niggles with the device, after a couple of weeks using it now, I am still really pleased to have this in my car. Its a good looking small device that does not look out of place ( apart from the cable ) and when its connected on the call fully, gives a good clear call quality, and the the music transfer from the mobile to the car stereos just tops it off nicely.

Avantree PowerHouse High Power Desk USB Charging Station review

I was kindly sent the Avantree PowerHouse High Power Desk USB Charging Station to review. Its the sort of thing that will be enormously useful in our house.
Let me first explain what the charging station is. This is taken from the Avantree website. It is a desk USB charging station and is a perfect solution for charging your multiple devices at home or the office. It can store and fast charge 4 deiveces simultaneously and will keep your desk or table top tidy. It features 4.5A High Power, fast charge your tablet and Smartphone. It is user configurable with stylish colours.It is a compact size and has a great space-saving design. It is smart compatible – it auto adapts to iPad, iPhone, Samsung Tab and ALL iOS and Android devices.
The Velcro system manages cables and keeps them hidden – for a tidy desk or table top!

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As I was about to go away for 5 days with Dee, Gee and her friend, I knew I would need this device more than ever given the amount of electronic devices we would be taking with us. The night before we left I unpacked the powerhouse and set about deciding which of the coloured pegs and supports I wanted.

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The peg covers simply fit onto and over the smaller white pegs to give you the trendy design you want. This is one of the things I would like to see a change on. As it is, its great. I really do like it, but firstly, the option to purchase lots more colours would be fantastic and secondly the design itself. Some people, such as my daughter have their iPads in a case. Mine has hers in a griffin survivor case as she has dropped and damaged it a couple of times. These cases get to be a pain if being taken off on a regular basis which would loosen the clips on the case. As it goes, the case makes the iPad to thick to stand on the powerhouse and though charging is ok, it would have to be lay flat beside the powerhouse. Sort of defeats the object of it, so what I suggest is they maybes rethink the design of the stand where the phones stand. Instead of having pegs stick up and fixed to the device, have it with lots of holes where you can move the pegs around to accommodate different thicknesses.
Another improvement I would make, which may well come in the future anyway is to have more USB ports to charge from. Maybes 8 if thats possible. And maybes the inclusion of a 3 pin british socket for times when USB is not the required charging option.
The final improvement I would make, or rather addition, is to have this come with a carry / travel case. I was really worried that, even though its made of hard plastic, that it would get damaged when I travel.

( Please excuse the mess. I was in such a rush trying to get everything sorted to go away, set up of the powerhouse was done in a hurry. You could make it look a lot tidier. )
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The first night I was very well happy with the powerhouse. Even though I rushed setting this up and didnt fully wrap the cables up properly in the included velcro straps, I managed to charge My Samsung Galaxy camera, a spare camera battery, my ecigarette ( see it not just for phones ), and my phone, all at the same time. Normally I have these taking up wall sockets. As I was charging GoPro batteries in other wall sockets this meant I was only using 3 sockets, not 6. I even used it in the caravan we stayed in for the 5 days, and on the train and in the hotel when we went away for the weekend.
Basically, if you are one of those people, or families with loads of things to charge, this is for you. I have not experienced any of the ‘trickle’ charges you get from some chargers where they take ages to charge. This charges the same as if your device was plugged into the wall directly.
What sort of things does it charge? Well, as long as the device charges by USB, then this will charge it. Whether its a phone ( Apple or Android ), tablet ( Apple or Android ), ecigarette, sat nav, dash cam, camera, you name it, it will more than likely work as long as its USB.

Currently ( at the time of this being published ) they are being sold for 29.99 UKP here

Thats a great price for this amazing handy piece of kit.