An armchair, post-NAMM wishlist.

2014 NAMM Show - Day 3

I always look forward to January, and my annual trip to the NAMM show in Anaheim to gawk at the cutting edge of music hardware (and software).  When I realized my schedule wouldn’t get me to NAMM this month I was bummed, but kept my ears and eyes peeled online. Despite no significant time on the show floor this year, there were a few announcements and developments at NAMM 2015 that still caught my attention. It should come as no surprise that I’m rather focused on effects & amps for guitar & bass. Here’s my video post-NAMM wishlist, with commentary.

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Trimmer

I love numbers and graphs. They help you visualize progress and data over time, and although I’ve gotten really good at data acquisition and analysis in regards to web sites and applications, not a bit of it was helping me in my quest to get – and stay – more fit until recently. That said, I think I’ve finally cracked the nut on this whole tech/fitness thing, at least for my own personal needs. In my earlier post ‘Trim‘, I talked about my earlier forays and stumblings at tech-enabling fitness efforts – but have now settled down to a much better, more robust solution now that covers all my primary goals.  I’ll lay out what I wanted, what I had, and what I ended up with after kissing a lot of frogs.

What I wanted(!)

  • GPS/Map tracking of runs/bike rides
  • Track/monitor heart rate
  • Track general daily activity
  • Track sleep effectivity
  • Track of calories burned
  • Track body measurements
  • Track workout and total distances/efforts
  • Set goals across workouts/general fitness
  • Share results & workouts with friends
  • Connect with friends on Nike+
  • Connect with friends on Fitbit
  • Connect with friends on Runkeeper
Um, yeah. Pretty tall order for any one system to provide all that, which is why I had so much trouble early on. Using different apps/systems just wasn’t easy or working out- I generally gave up on the setup/prep if it was too convoluted. So I wanted to find one way to track my run/workout that fit in with whatever I was using to track, dashboard and monitor my biometrics and ideally share/collaborate/compete with my friends online too.
What to do?

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Cans

Yeah, all the cool kids call them ‘beats’ now, but I never got down with the shoe/kicks vibe either. To me, headphones will always be cans (thanks for that, studio life), and an integral part of my life both personally and professionally. Obviously a clear, uncolored set of cans/headphones are great for studio work so you can translate your mixes/etc to the real world more effectively, but I’ll admit for recreational listening I tend to go for a little more ‘oomph’ in the low end. Having tried a TON of headphones (and headsets) over the years, I’m slowly settling down to three pairs (plus one ‘wildcard’). Here they are, why I still use them all regularly, and their pros/cons from my perspective.

Beats by Dr Dre - Wireless

Beats Wireless – General Listening
Somewhere between the Pro & Studio and the Solo models, the Beats Wireless cans have a great balance of fidelity with some fat low end for a rich listening experience. Although the Studio model is much more accurate, there’s just something about the sound of these that I’ve come to love, they tend to warm up the bass guitar range (my personal focus area of the spectrum) and have a pleasing high end, not too brittle or crisp. But the convenience is the best part, they’re so comfortable and easy to use without the connecting cable that I often forget I’m wearing them, or need to stay within range of my phone/tablet/laptop.

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