By Don Lindich
Week 27, 2018
I know Sound Advice readers love deals, so I will start this week with news from Sbode, an up-and-coming manufacturer of portable electronics.
Earlier this year I wrote about Sbode Sport Bluetooth Headphones, which are a standout for their sound quality and value. Selling for only $23.99, they were the best sub-$25 earphones I had ever heard, and they are well-made, comfortable and well-balanced on the ear. Your $23.99 did not get you a stripped-down product, either, as the earphones came in attractive packaging complete with a semi-hard case and charging cable. Once word got out about them, they sold out quickly and I became deluged with emails asking where people could get a second pair for friend or family member.
Given that the earphones were a smash hit and instant sellout, I was expecting that when they did become available again that the price might go up a bit, perhaps to $27.99 or $29.99. They easily justify that price, and even with a price bump I would still get them my A-1, two-thumbs up recommendation. I was surprised and delighted to see that did not happen. It’s nice to see a company that doesn’t let success make them greedy!
If you are interested in trying the earphones, for a short time a great deal will be getting even better. From July 11 to July 31, Sbode will be selling the earphones on Amazon for only $18.99 by offering a $5 off coupon displayed on the Amazon product page. I think that’s a bit too cheap for them but if they want to make such offers, I am happy to tell people about it. If you need earphones or want to get an early start on stocking stuffers, now is your chance.
I also had a chance to hear Sbode’s small M350 Bluetooth speaker recently and it is another winner. Selling for $34.95, this attractive small cylindrical speaker also includes FM radio with an auto-tune mode and TF Card (MicroSD) playback. You can also pair two of them together as left-right speakers for stereo playback. I have a lot of unique and interesting music saved on TF cards (for example, a complete compilation of the music from Horizons, a wonderful and sorely missed attraction that once graced Disney’s EPCOT Center) and the Sbode Bluetooth speaker has become my TF card playback device of choice. It has the natural, well-balanced sound of good Hi-Fi gear and it makes for pleasant listening. The speaker can break up a bit at max volume, but that is the only critical thing I really have to say. Sbode is giving away four of them in a promotion ending July 25th. See Sbode’s Facebook page for details.
Q. We need a television antenna and have seen them recommended them in your column before. I could not find the information online. What indoor antennas do you recommend?
-C.M., East Bay, CA
A. If you are looking for information from my past columns it is easy to find on my website, soundadvicenews.com. Just go to the website and enter the keywords in the search box, or click on the appropriate category on the right side of the page I have a category for antennas that pulls up several columns, including, “Choosing the right television antenna.”
One of my favorite indoor antennas is the Winegard FlatWave antenna, which is $29.99 for the basic model and $59.99 for the amplified version.
Another great one is the Antennas Direct ClearStream Eclipse, which sells for $39.99 (basic) and $59.99 (amplified.)