Review: LETSCOM Bluetooth Headphones

I really meant to write this review a few months back, but I got sidetracked by more important things and couldn’t get back to it before now. Fortunately, I have the time that I didn’t have before, so I can do this now.

Back in the beginning of September, just as I started to get active again, I realized one of the things that I struggled with when it came to exercising is that I need to distract myself from the fact that I am, in fact, exercising.

I’ll be honest in saying I don’t generally enjoy working out, especially when I am first starting to do so. It’s been even worse since I’m almost 40, and pretty heavy to boot. However, I have discovered that one thing that helps me get through exercise is to have some sort of distraction; especially music and / or videos to watch.

Video is tricky because, while I can use my phone, it only really works for a treadmill or bike, and stationary bikes are annoying to me, so that leaves me with the treadmill. And the problem there is that with such a small screen, you’re bouncing too much to really be able to concentrate on what you are watching, especially once you get above 3 miles an hour.

So that leaves music.

I personally love big headphones for music. Frankly, I prefer the feel of having something over my ears, and not in them. Still, it’s not comfortable or easy to use such headphones when you exercise. They might be OK on a treadmill, but forget it for anything else. They’re big, bulky, and it just really won’t work right.

Most ear buds are a problem, too. Due to the way my ears are shaped, I’ve never really had a set of earbuds that could stay in. One or both of them would drop out, or I have to push them so far in that it’s really uncomfortable. So It’s been a nightmare to find anything that works effectively. Until I got the Letscom IXP7 sports buds. The reason these work so well for me is that they have a very comfortable over-the-ear clasp that really works great for me.

In addition, the buds are wireless, Bluetooth, and come with 4 different size earpiece covers (sorry, I don’t know the official name of these parts) that allow for a snug but VERY comfortable fit, and make the sound absolutely fantastic. The quality of the audio is amazing, especially considering the price tag (as of this writing, you can buy them on Amazon for around $17. They’re apparently waterproof for being out in the rain and coping with sweat. I can’t speak to the rain thing, since I don’t enjoy getting soaked when I’m exercising, but I do sweat like you wouldn’t believe, and nothing more than a quick wipe off with a damp paper towel gets them nice and clean.

No, these are not Apple AirPods Pro, but for the price, they do exactly what I want them to do, and they do it well. So are they going to compare to higher cost units? Maybe… maybe not. If you really want some premium sound, you might look at a higher-end unit. But don’t dismiss these as a poor product. Frankly, I love these things, and I consider this a fantastic purchase that I intend to use a lot.

As a quick side note on that, I walk almost every day at work for 30 – 60 minutes. I typically charge them once a week, and I also use them at other times, too. So the battery life is fantastic, and again, for this price, even if they only last me two years, I feel like I got my money’s worth.

Make sure to check them out on Amazon. Available in a number of colors. I bought green on black.

reMarkable Day 15

Two weeks ago I started using my new reMarkable e-Ink tablet as a replacement to carrying around a lot of disorganized notes on yellow legal pads. Today, day 15, I can now say I am glad I invested in this tool. It still remains to be seen how this plays on in a real long-term sense (how will I feel after 3 months or 6 months), but my impression up to this point is that this tool is making my job easier, little-by-little.

As a person who has always struggled to keep notes and planning materials organized, this has already demonstrated a marked value in reducing some of the load of getting my work-life organized.

There are a few idiosyncrasies in using the reMarkable, and there are some features that I’d like to see added in over time, but even as it stands now, I find myself being able to take notes, sketch out plans and concepts and just plain doodle as I desire.

The $500 price tag on this unit is a bit high, but considering the fact that it is NOT being mass-produced on a level approaching the average Android smart phone or Amazon Kindle, it’s completely understandable that the price will be higher.

Still, between the battery life which I am finding excellent, the comfort of still feeling like I have paper, and the good fundamental structure for writing, organizing and saving my data, I am inclined to say that this could be a bonafide hit. I’ll post a few shots of my use so far.

Admittedly it may appear a bit slim after two weeks, but I’ve had only a handful of meetings with anything I could add, and some of it I have to blot out due to business security. Still, I think this should give you an idea of what you can do on this tablet, and as time goes on, I will address further the strengths and weaknesses.

I will admit that a few reviews out there had some understandable criticism of features, but it is nice to see that the folks who’ve made this tablet have been learning from the user input and releasing updates to address some of these issues. I think as time goes on, this will let them continue updating the tablet and producing a product that really does step us towards the “paperless” office model that was talked about for years.

reMarkable Day 1

So I finally made the decision to purchase and try out the reMarkable e-Ink tablet. A lot of people who know me can attest that one of my biggest nightmares is trying to stay organized, especially when I have a lot of stuff flying at me.

I’ve always had that trouble, going all the way back to 1st grade, and one of the biggest nightmares for me was always to keep organized when it comes to notes – handwritten notes especially.

At one point, I thought a laptop would help, but there came a few problems with laptops. First, they tent to have keyboards that are not always handled well by my rather large hands. Second, there tends to be more distraction with things like computers and tablets with browsers. It’s hard sometimes to stay focused if you know there is something that can provide a distraction readily, and that’s never a good thing.

Regular tablets and laptops, too, have the negative effect of causing you to suffer the effects of trying to read stuff that is essentially printed on a light bulb. After a while, I get eye strain, headaches, etc.

The alternative, reams of paper that are easily lost, confused or end up with intermixed content, just tends to make me a mess after a while. Not to mention, what I end up with after a while are 30 sheets of dates for meetings with a few scattered notes in between… after a while, I have a mess of papers to sort through looking for what the heck I’m supposed to be working on.

For a number of years I had a classic-styled Kindle reader from Amazon. And something I learned from that was: e-Ink is fantastically easy on the eyes and the low power consumption means my device can last for weeks on a single charge. While it doesn’t help with complex graphics and the like, the fact is, if I’m talking about daily notes taken in meetings or discussions with co-workers, that’s not really a problem.

A couple years back I saw a KickStarter campaign for an e-Ink tablet that included a stylus, allowing for note taking, sketching and organizing. I was intrigued. As much as the price tag was high, it definitely resonated that a single device with about 6 – 8 GB of memory might be able to provide an answer to organizing lots of paper notes that eventually get too messy to keep track of.

Finally, last week, I decided to bite the bullet and get one. At the very least, I would write it off on my taxes and that wasn’t a total waste, but if things I’d read about it and a serious desire to organize kicked in, it might end up being an extremely beneficial thing to have.

The reMarkable e-Ink tablet. We’ll see how it holds up to my daily use over the next few months…

So day 1 – obviously it’s too early to say it’s paid for itself, but I will say, it was nice to carry this into my meeting rather than a ratty pad of paper, and have my notes organized for one meeting, separately from my notes for other projects, and to-do-lists, and random doodles… and no eye strain from using it.

As time goes on, I will post some updates on how the tools is working out, and I’ll let you know how I feel about this tool.

Forewarning: if you want one, be prepared for a bit of initial sticker shock. They are about $500.00. Still, if organization is my goal and I put in my efforts to using this properly, that might be a worthwhile expenditure ultimately.

Time will tell.

If you’re interested, here’s the link to the reMarkable tablet home.