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W. C. Bryant RSS Feed (Columbus, OH USA)
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MARQ RezoTube Pack | High-Resolution Lighting Tube Display Package with 5x32 RGB LED and Mounting Stands
MARQ RezoTube Pack | High-Resolution Lighting Tube Display Package with 5x32 RGB LED and Mounting Stands
Price: $449.00

5.0 out of 5 stars MARQ's wide range of pro-grade but price-friendly lighting solutions continue to impress. The Rezotubes are not an exception., July 7, 2016
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
First, everything you need to be up and running with their built in display programs is included in a padded, manageable, and squared off (great for stacking) soft case. Five independent tubes, the pivot mount/stand, the controller, and all the cables. Even someone who has absolutely no experience working with lighting will have this open, set up, and displaying different programs inside 10-15 minutes on their first attempt. It's that intuitive and well designed.

This isn't a case in which significant corners have been cut in order to bring professional features down to a hobbyist price point. MARQ is making a name for itself in terms of professional quality and features all while making themselves approachable to individuals and small organizations who want to be able to add style and focus to their shows.

The ability to sync with music is a fantastic and unexpected perk in a package at this price point. The tubes, while plastic, are durable. You're not going to want to have a child swinging them around like lightsabers, but they're going to handle drops and on-the-job abuse well.

If you're looking at add a substantial level of interest to your own act or production, this is a great way to do it. The "bang for the buck" value is fantastic, the LEDs bright and the colors vivid, the built-in programs expressive and representing a good range of options. Can't think of a single con.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jul 14, 2016 9:47 AM PDT


Denon HEOS AMP Wireless Amplifier (Black with Silver) (New Version)
Denon HEOS AMP Wireless Amplifier (Black with Silver) (New Version)
Offered by AUDIOLAB - Since 1958
Price: $499.00
3 used & new from $499.00

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Modern solution to zoned/full-home music, app could use some work but it's already getting it. Denon quality., June 16, 2016
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Entirely modern alternative to the much larger footprint and price tag of a full blown receiver.

Denon has successfully bridged the previously neglected middle ground between self-contained "off the shelf" systems and the much more involved and expensive individual components approach to audio management/streaming and home theater solutions with the HEOS AMP. The AMP has a remarkably reduced footprint from other amplified devices, and eschews front facing control for the HEOS app functionality. As a whole this makes for a convenient solution for those who want to be able to manage music across multiple rooms or throughout an entire home, and also want the connectivity that comes with a variety of Internet-based streaming apps.

Purists need not apply, of course. Denon's highest end equipment is made in Japan, their more economical offerings are manufactured in China -- the HEOS AMP is produced in Vietnam. This is, at the end of the day, less about the nationality of the labor and much more about the quality of the materials going in. However, the AMP isn't trying to be audiophile-level gear, it's trying to be a plug and play device-driven solution for those who still want quality (in terms of construction and audio) but without the expense, tangle of cables between different devices, and the footprint of larger systems.

Denon delivers magnificently when it comes to the hardware itself, but (in its present iteration) the software is lacking. The app lacks the polish and intuitiveness of other device-focused controls, but the functionality is there and the good news is that it will continue to evolve and improve over time.

If filling your home with device-controlled music and driving unpowered speakers throughout is your goal, you'd be hard pressed to find a better solution that satisfies all the criteria that the AMP does. Note that if you have powered speakers Denon offers a non-amplified version of this product called the LINK. All of the functionality without the additional cost and weight of amplification.

All in all, Denon has done a tremendous job both in terms of expanding its footprint and bringing quality worthy of their name into a more accessible market.


Denon HEOS LINK Wireless Pre-Amplifier (Black with Silver) (New Version)
Denon HEOS LINK Wireless Pre-Amplifier (Black with Silver) (New Version)
Price: $349.00
6 used & new from $305.38

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Gives new life and functionality to older systems. Exceptional if you want BOTH streaming and multi-room control., June 8, 2016
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
This pre-amplifier (the HEOS LINK) provides all the functionality of its "driver" sibling (the HEOS AMP), but does without the amplification because the expectation is that you're plugging into an existing/complete audio system. So this is a way to introduce entirely modern functionality (app controlled multi-zoned audio and Internet connectivity to a variety of streaming solutions) to an older system or to standalone powered speakers/monitors. While most of Denon's own higher end AVRs would make much of this functionality redundant, they also climb into ten-fold multipliers of the price. So for someone who has (for example) an older AVR4800 (a legend in its time but nearly 20 years old), new life and functionality can be breathed into the system with the LINK.

The hardware itself is pretty straight forward. Consider the listed dimensions in the product description, this is smaller than you're likely going to expect based on the picture. The case is sleek and attractive, unassuming without being completely nondescript -- but the important thing is that it performs well as a delivery and zone management option.

If you simply want to add streaming to an old system, there are more economically efficient ways to do it, but if you're *also* interested in controlling sound/speakers throughout your home or business, then this is a wonderful niche solution. Denon purists and audiophiles will note that their absolute best products are manufactured in Japan, their economy gear in China; the HEOS Link is manufactured in Vietnam -- but then does a product like this require the sort of precision and top end material of a full blown AVRX? Certainly not.


Samsung Electronics Xpress SL-C430W/XAA Wireless Color Printer, Amazon Dash Replenishment Enabled
Samsung Electronics Xpress SL-C430W/XAA Wireless Color Printer, Amazon Dash Replenishment Enabled
Offered by biddeal_co
Price: $183.04
40 used & new from $94.39

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Samsung takes their exceptional laser printer line and adds color; everybody wins., May 29, 2016
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I sat here for quite a while trying to decide if I should knock off star(s) because of the cost of the official toner carts; but in the end decided that was too subjective, too subject to change, and when you factor in a program like AmazonDash which automates everything but physically putting the new cartridges in place, it seemed like a silly reason to ding as long as people know going in what the costs are (and AMZN puts them on the same page).

The printer itself? I've had a long and glorious relationship with a Samsung B&W Laser. It supports AirPrint, it was super easy to set up, it caused problems with none of my devices, it had great paper capacity, it was reasonably quiet, and reasonably fast. It was everything I wanted in a printer, and we were happy together. We still are! But mostly because the B&W doesn't know about the C430W, which is everything it is but in glorious glorious color. You're not going to print something that looks like a processed photograph with this, but neither are you going to produce the sort of washed out effect so often attributable to inkjets on lighter stocks. Color laser printing was a largely unachievable tech for home users not all that long ago, and not only has Samsung made it reasonably economical, but they've smartly applied everything that made the rest of their printer line great to this one as well.

If the toner costs don't scare you off, and you value the option to introduce color to your prints without the issues that come with ink (bleeding, washed out colors, solubility, etc.), then I'm simply not aware of where or how you can do better than this one in terms of performance and bang for the buck.


Coleman Carlsbad 4-Person Dome Dark Room Tent with Screen Room
Coleman Carlsbad 4-Person Dome Dark Room Tent with Screen Room
Price: $151.99
10 used & new from $139.28

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good family tent that will satisfy different camping wants., May 29, 2016
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
It probably goes without saying that your particular needs are going to drive the type of tent you're considering. This was not the tent I was looking for as a pre-teen and teen Boy Scout. It's not the one I wanted in my 20s if it was a tubing trip in the mountains or off to a concert with a girlfriend. Overkill for these purposes. Too many extras that just meant more time putting up and taking down. As a 40-something with a small family and a couple dogs? This fits the bill in so many ways. While I may have found extraordinary value in "roughing it" on camping and hiking trips (and you don't want to go hiking with this), not everyone you might wanted to go with may have been as excited about eschewing some of the creature comforts. A soft sleep surface, electronics, etc. The Carlsbad seems like a wonderful compromise for a small family, truly ample space for two adults, one little one, and a couple dogs. I wouldn't want to squeeze four adults into it -- but then I don't particularly want to squeeze four adults into any tent.

The screen room is a nice touch. It's not something that would sell the tent to me, but it's also something that you will appreciate having at times. I agree with others who said that it would have been a truly exceptional perk had it the option of some cover -- perhaps if there was a foldover bit of material that could provide even basic element protection -- but in an "extra" space it's not exactly critical.

The dark room tech is actually quite impressive. Late sleepers will definitely appreciate how dark it is inside even at mid-day.

The designed 'port' to feed a power wire through will be a pleasant convenience for those who will make use of it, for those who won't certainly it doesn't present any problems.

Well made, easy enough to put up and take down, but the design does result in a fairly substantial number of guy lines which are always fun in middle of the night half-awake "relief" stumbles.

All in all, a very nice tent for those who want the size and features to bridge camping with comfort.


Mars by Crazybaby - World's Only Auto Levitating Speaker with Subwoofer, White
Mars by Crazybaby - World's Only Auto Levitating Speaker with Subwoofer, White
Offered by stores123
Price: $329.00
4 used & new from $324.99

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The saucer itself is spectacular. The sound is just okay, warm but lacks real range and clarity. Unstable and muddy at times., May 6, 2016
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
No issues with the app in iOS 9.3.1 on an iPhone 6S. That said, the app isn't just terribly important insofar as once you've established a Bluetooth connection you're just sending over all your audio (including clicks and dings) to the speaker.

I've given the Mars 4 stars, but I feel like I need to explain why. The sound quality is not spectacular. "Good" is fair, "fine" is probably a more fitting description. While the write-up talks about the sub, the reality is that the low end just isn't well represented. I have a year old Jabra Solemate that produces a better (or at least comparable) sound stage, and it's an ultra portable. But again, the sound is good enough. Good enough that one or two of these in a very conspicuous place (the levitation is a clever bit of eye candy, after all) are going to satisfy a basic need for background music, even in a relatively low-key entertaining setting. Good enough that, and I love this part of the Mars, you can snap the disc on to your bike and get a solid soundtrack to your ride. Good enough that when clarity and depth aren't your chief concerns, you're going to be happy with the flying saucer portion -- and that's the part that truly shines. Waterproof, durable, high power magnet; honestly, if this product was just that and the base was an afterthought, I'd probably be giving it five stars and giving it a huge pass on the sound because of the rugged outdoor-ready quality of it. But it does have the base, and it does have the price tag to go with it, and I find myself lamenting the fact that the sound could be better. The audio quality *should* be better. In terms of that, this is a three star product.

So why four? Four because the floating novelty is exceptionally well done. The rise and drop are smooth, the saucer steady, it is every bit the remarkable conversation starter and eye catcher you would expect. What people want to do is run their hands under it, or a sheet of paper; then they want to pick up the disc so that they have tactile proof of what their eyes are telling them, and then they want to put it back down and watch it float again. That last part they can't do, and I found myself having to tell people not to try and put it back on the base after they had lifted it off. You have to set it aside, wait for the light to stop blinking (as the floating mechanism inside lowers to the starting position), and then you can put it back on and watch it rise again.

Four because, as I noted above, the saucer/disc itself is a true marvel. Enough of one that you forgive the mediocre sound quality. It's got ample volume to satisfy your music needs, and a powerful enough magnet to really hang on wherever you clip it. Mine has gone with me on a number of bike rides, and that's where and why I do have a lot of affection for the Mars. Around the pool, off to the beach, just on your deck while you're grilling -- without a worry in the world when your neighbor spills a margarita on it. The saucer is the triumph here; not the base.

So read this as a tepidly positive review of the whole of the device, saucer and base. Lukewarm on the sound quality, But ravingly positive in terms of the saucer itself. Crazybaby has a winner with that part of it, and they would be very smart, I think, to offer the saucer alone at a much friendlier entry price as an alternative.


Zuli Smartplug: Smart Home Control, Dimmer, Energy Monitor & Timer (Individual)
Zuli Smartplug: Smart Home Control, Dimmer, Energy Monitor & Timer (Individual)
Price: $48.17
10 used & new from $39.67

5.0 out of 5 stars Well designed from top to bottom, instant responses, nice clean app. Wish it had IFTTT support, but that may be coming., May 5, 2016
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Nicely polished smartplug; already ahead (in my opinion) of Belkin's WeMo line which suffered from issues related to passwords that had special characters in them and other rather silly/backwards problems. With crowdfunded-type products I'm used to getting them sort of on the bleeding edge while they still need a lot of work -- and while the Zuli will continue to be tweaked and refined, it really does feel like they launched it once it was truly ready to go. It's clear that a lot of capable design went into every aspect of the device itself, the associated app, even the packaging.

Functionality is what you want; little to no delay when you toggle on and off. Clean timer feature. Good interoperability with HUE. One of the reasons I'm dinging a single star (edit: see comments below, I've since adjusted as it wasn't really fair to ding for a feature that wasn't promised but is being researched) is a lack of IFTTT support. While the built-in interoperability is nice, I think it's important at present to be able to define your own (simple or complex) set of conditions for all of these isolated bits of automation in the house. If I want Zuli to react based on my August lock being actuated, or my Ring doorbell going off, or any one of a number of other circumstances, then there seems little reason not to allow that.

But let me be clear, the Zuli truly is a smart smartplug, while that seems redundant, the market has been full of "smart"plugs that weren't very smart at all. The Zuli team has taken a wonderful first step and pushed the tech forward, and I'm very optimistic that they will continue to improve upon it given their track record to this point.

This is one early adoption that went very very smoothly.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: May 5, 2016 3:58 PM PDT


MARQ Onset 120WW - 120-watt Warm-White LED Ellipsoidal Framing Spot
MARQ Onset 120WW - 120-watt Warm-White LED Ellipsoidal Framing Spot
Price: $649.00

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars High end/professional features and performance with a previously unheard of price point. Wonderful light., April 30, 2016
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
The MARQ Onset 120WW blends the market line between pro- and enthusiast-grade lighting with its high end features and simply previously unheard of economic efficiency in terms of MSRP *and* cost of operation as an LED product.

During unboxing I had some initial concerns about the plastic housing, but these were very quickly put to rest as much less heat is generated than one would expect. Standard GOBOs do indeed fit and work wonderfully, producing crisp and clean imaging. Similarly, the framing shutters do a wonderful job shaping and limiting the 26 degree light output as one needs.

The strobe is a welcome feature and one that I think will really appeal to DJs and other like entertainers, but truly this light could plug right in (with the power linking or not) next to far more expensive lights and stand equal in most meaningful ways. So whether you're considering it for a permanent install as part of stage lighting, as part of traveling lighting gear (and it would shine (no pun intended) here with its relatively light weight) for a DJ, musician, or like production, or even as a light feature in a home, this is truly a remarkable entry into the field.


Mosquito Magnet MM4200 Patriot Plus Mosquito Trap
Mosquito Magnet MM4200 Patriot Plus Mosquito Trap
Price: $329.99
20 used & new from $280.49

5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Enjoy the outdoors, don't let the outdoors enjoy you., April 30, 2016
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Here's the most important statement I'm going to make in this review -- the Mosquito Magnet MM4200 Patriot Plus works, and it works well. Mosquitos will come from far and wide to congregate here, which means they're not where you don't want them to be.

I'm starting with that statement because it overrides the rest of what I want to say -- and that it's somewhat frustrating (but understandably necessary) that this is by no means a fire and forget solution. You're going to go through gas, you're going to have to get more purge/clear cartridges, the toxic attractant, and you'll need to replace nets. But let's loop back around to that opening statement; it works, and it works well. If the cost of effectively avoiding Zika, bites, itching, the sprays, useless candles, and that annoying high pitched whine in your ears is that you have to perform routine maintenance and upkeep on this unit -- then the end certainly justifies the means if you're going to be spending a substantial amount of time outdoors.

Location, location, location. You may have to try a few placements before you find what works best for you. Imagine an overhead shot of your yard, then imagine the points of entry along the exterior boundaries of that plot for the offending mosquitos. Where are the breeding grounds, where are they congregating? Now picture the point where you intend to place the Patriot (remember that it needs to be within 50' of an outlet). If you draw arrows from the points of entry (water/breeding grounds, dense vegetation/pines/shrubs, etc.), then you still don't want your recreation areas to be in or even near those travel lanes. That will make more sense if and when you get to the point where you're setting it up and using it, but it's important to remember that the skeeters are going to gather at (and then die in) the Patriot, and you don't want to distract them with your tasty tasty blood along the way.

I'm going to close by doing something unusual for me -- there are two reviews for this product that I think are truly indispensable. They contain truly valuable tips (hacks) in one case, and a very useful accounting of the operation overhead in the other. Rather than cover these same points (my original draft of this review did so, but not as well or comprehensively), I want to simply point to these as highly suggested reading for potential buyers. They are: "Just buy it! Oh and read these essential free hacks to save time and money on mosquito magnet ownership!" by Baranof as posted 4/13/16, and "Tough Love – Preparing for Zika OR Help me Obi Wan Kanobi. You're my only hope." by Aceto as posted 4/9/16. Even as you consider the totality of all of the different reviews for this product, those two reviews are worth very careful consideration if and when you decide to pull the buy trigger as they give practical and specific guidance that will truly help you get the most out of this wonderful device.


Critical Cycles Chatham Beach Cruiser Men's 26" Single-Speed, Matte Black
Critical Cycles Chatham Beach Cruiser Men's 26" Single-Speed, Matte Black
Price: $179.99

0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Smooth, handsome, modern, and entirely economical interpretation of a classic no-gear cruiser., April 29, 2016
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
The generously flared frame, the curvature to the same, the upright bars, comfortable seat, easy adjustment, and smooth wide tires -- this is a modern and entirely economical interpretation of a classic no-gear cruiser. It's got a clean esthetic, blacked out wheels with polished chrome spoke nipples makes for a modern and even somewhat aggressive look that compliments the more laid back lines and smooth ride.

As a short range leisurely ride, the bang for the buck here is extraordinary. Assembly is trivial; while the instructions could have used a little more time and attention, the fact of the matter is you're only responsible for mounting the seat and seat post, the stem and handlebar, the pedals, the front wheel, and the reflectors. That's it. The instructions suggest several times over that they recommend taking it to a qualified bicycle mechanic, but let's face it, this is a single speed casual cruiser and not a high end road or mountain bike, and having an expert tune it for you could cost nearly as much as the bicycle itself.

I really have no complaints at all given the MSRP. It's a smooth ride, pleasing esthetic, easily assembled and maintained, relatively light yet feels solid, and very comfortable. What's not to like? Just understand that you're get what you pay for here, there's going to be no mistaking this for a high end bike -- but who cares if you're just out on a leisurely cruise? I'll stop short of calling it a "disposable" bike, because the thought of that sort of callous waste turns my stomach; but certainly it's bare-bones economical. When considered thusly, there's really no question it deserves at least 4 stars in my eyes.


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