PSA: Space Heater Safety and TV Deals

PSA - Space Heater Safety and 4K HDR Roku TV Deal

Hey, Internet.  Anyone still reading this?

I often come across good articles, but I don’t feel like sharing on Twitter, since I have so few followers, and I so rarely go on Facebook that I don’t see the point sharing there.  In lieu of that, here you go!

Winter Safety – Space Heaters

When you plug a space heater into a power strip, you’re using up almost everything the power strip can accommodate, and that doesn’t even count all the other stuff you’ll be plugging in to it.

My personal space heater uses 1500W of electricity.  To put that into perspective, most power strips have a max power delivery of 1500W, so if you plug even a single extra item into that power strip, you’re going to overdrive it.  Most power strips will short out to protect from this, but some won’t, so don’t take the chance!

TV Deal of the Year – TCL 55S405 55″ Roku TV 4K/HDR – $320

I got the 2016 model of this same TV (55US5800) without HDR, and it is a really solid 4K TV.  The Roku TV interface is not only really fast to operate, it’s also incredibly handy, to not need a separate set top box like an Apple TV or other Roku player.

If you’re in the market for a new TV, you should buy this one immediately.  If you have any issues with it, Target is really good with returns.  I’ve loved mine, and we only have to reboot it (complete system restart) about once every four days or so, to make sure everything keeps working snappy.

That’s it for now, but I’m going to try (haha, we’ll see how this works out) to start posting more regularly here, sharing links I find helpful / relevant, and maybe that’ll lead me to post more original content as well.

Leave a comment if you want!

New Desk HiFi Audio Setup (Audiophile)

HiFi Desk Audio Setup Audiophile - Hack Your Productivity

(Infographic picture at bottom of post)

When I really need to focus on getting work done, I have to turn the music in my headphones up really loud.  My headphones are Sennheiser HD600, which have an impedance of 300 ohms.  This means they are a bit harder to drive than other ‘normal’ headphones.

When I listen straight out of the headphone jack from my MacBook Pro – even at max volume – they don’t get as loud as they are capable of getting.  This is where my headphone amp comes in handy.

So now, I want a way to get digital audio out of my MacBook Pro, then send a fresh analog signal into the O2 headphone amp, to be amplified into my headphones.  However, I also want to be able to easily switch between headphones and desk stereo speakers.

The downside with using optical out from my MacBook is that it’s a fixed level, so I can’t adjust the volume with my keyboard knob any more.  So now I’ll have to use the knob on the desk speakers and the knob on my headphone amplifier – but that’s a small price to pay for high quality – very amplified sound.

Here’s an infographic to display how my setup will function when I get the remaining parts.

HiFi Desk Audio Setup Audiophile - Hack Your Productivity

Microsoft To-Do is Replacing Wunderlist

Microsoft To-Do - Maximize Your Productivity

Microsoft To-Do - Maximize Your Productivity

I do indeed use Wunderlist quite a bit to help with my Productivity, but I also rely heavily on Office365, so I’m thinking although it’s scary to think Wunderlist will be gone, it’ll be cool to see what extra features Microsoft can add / come up with to make it even better!

Original Story

Awesome Headphone Hanger – Organize My Desk

Aluminum Headphone Desk Hanger - Organize My Desk

I usually store my headphones on my desk somewhere, but it’s always annoying having them taking up valuable space that could either be housing something else, or just adding visual clutter to my workspace.

My Sennheiser HD600 cans came with a desk clamp / mount, but I donated it while we lived in the trailer thinking I’d never need it.  This new aluminum headphone hanger is even nicer than the Sennheiser one I got, and it works great!  It comes with two screws, if you want some added stability / security, but I’ve had it attached to my desk with only the 3M double sided tape for three days now, and it’s held up great.  Feels super sturdy!

This is a great way to clean up your workspace and make you feel like a badass at the same time!

Aluminum Headphone Desk Hanger - Organize My Desk

The little rubber half sphere you see is also a great way to route and organize the cables on your desk.  I got a pack of 6, and still have 4 left to add somewhere on my desk!

Aluminum Headphone Hanger at Amazon - Organize My Desk             Rubber Desk Cable Organizer at Amazon - Organize My Desk

Lapel Mic for iPhone 7 Plus (Lightning to 3.5mm)

iPhone Lapel Mic Adapter Setup - Productivity Hacks

I’ve been doing more editing on my iPhone lately, so naturally I wanted a way to get higher quality audio during videos than the iPhone’s built-in microphone allows.  I thought it might also be handy to record podcasts directly on my iPhone, when I didn’t feel like sitting at my work desk.

TRS TRRS ExplanationI have used a Sony ECMCS3 Lapel mic for a couple videos I’ve recently uploaded to YouTube, and I really like the way it sounds.  I want to use this mic on with my iPhone, but this mic has a ‘TRS’ (Tip, Ring, Sleeve) input; whereas the iPhone needs to accept a ‘TRRS’ (Tip, Ring, Ring, Sleeve) input.

This is because the iPhone wants to have access to 1) left audio, 2) right audio, 3) microphone, and 4) ground.

How I Hooked it all Up

iPhone Lapel Mic Adapter Setup - Productivity Hacks

I plugged my lapel mic into the TRS to TRRS adapter, and then plugged that into the Apple Lightning to 3.5mm dongle.  I then opened up the Voice Memos app to test it out.

Phantom Power

It didn’t work. *Frown face*  From what I’ve read on multiple Amazon product reviews and other websites, the audio recorder that I normally use with my lapel mic (the Olympus LS-10) must be providing phantom power to the Sony mic, and the iPhone is not providing that power.

There are other options for adding microphones to the iPhone via lightning, but I really wanted to continue using this lapel mic that I already enjoy.  Sadly, it appears that won’t be possible.

Perhaps if I get a splitter for headphone and microphone inputs, and have a pair of headphones plugged in at the same time, the iPhone will see the proper load and use the microphone.  I’ll try that next, but for now I’m upset that the adapter I already bought won’t do the trick.