Posts By Jessica Jordan

Home Automation Devices

Technology has moved us to make things more secure and convenient for people. One growing trend has been smart home technology or home automation. Smart home technology provides homeowners more convenience, comfort, energy efficiency, and security through smart devices in the home that can be controlled from anywhere, anytime through a mobile type application. You may ask, how can this be done? These smart devices are typically connected wirelessly to the Internet through the home’s WIFI. There are limitless possibilities for these smart home devices. Devices include smart light bulbs, doorbells, door locks, thermostat, and home security cameras.

Smart light bulbs come in different colored lights, and they are remotely controlled by smartphones or tablets wherever you may be. It can also be voice activated with Alexa. One of the established brands is Philips. So if you’re seriously considering this device, you know to trust Philips. These are known to last a lifetime, so you do not have to worry about investing too much money into it over a period of time. Also, these smart light bulbs will be a great addition to your house because they can be used in your lamp, ceiling fanlights, and simply replaces any light bulbs you see around the house, which means you will not need to worry about any technical electronic aspects inside the house.

In addition, many people are already utilizing the smart doorbell by Nest or Ring and the smart door locks. The door lock can also be controlled by your smartphone or tablet. If you ever forget to lock your door, then you can lock them on your way to work. Also, you’ll never have to worry about locking yourself out of your own house. You can simply unlock your door with a touch of a button from your smartphone. Additionally, if you’re in the basement expecting guests, you can simply unlock your door with your phone rather than going all the way to the door to let them in. Moreover, smart doorbell is another popular device nowadays. The smart doorbell by Ring includes a built-in camera. Thus, you’ll always know who is ringing your doorbell. Even if you’re not at home, you’ll get an alert of who is ringing your doorbell. This is a major protection to your home because if anyone rings your doorbell, you can take a peek on your phone rather than peeking out your window.

Furthermore, smart thermostat installed in your house is convenient. When you forget to adjust your temperature before you leave your house, you can simply open up the corresponding application on your smartphone and adjust it to your desired temperature. Also, this is great during winter season. You can raise the temperature on your way home from work, so that you are not walking into a freezing cold house.
Smart home security camera is a huge safety addition to your house. Whether you are at home or away, you will get a notification on your smartphone if the camera detects any movements. If it is anyone alarming, then you can set off an alarm or report for emergency immediately.

As the society is becoming more technology dependent, they can be more reliable and accurate. Having smart devices around the house adds greater security and safety. Not only will it enhance the safety aspect, but also it could potentially conserve tremendous amount of energy because you will never have to second-guess on whether you turned the light off, locked the door, or turned down the temperature before you left for work. So, take some time to check out the smart devices for your house!

Carlsbro Electronic Drum Kit

Carlsbro was founded in 1959 in the English town of Nottingham, England. It started out as a British guitar amplifier company where they made amps and sold them directly to musicians. Their amps were being used by some famous bands like Herman’s Hermits, The Hollies, The Beatles, and the Rolling Stones. Carlsbro was eventually acquired by Soundking Group, which is China’s biggest musical equipment and professional audio company. Through their parent company’s production and manufacturing capabilities, Carlsbro has been able to advance and expand their product line and eventually getting into electronic drum kits.

One of Carlsbro electronic drum kits is the CSD130XXX. This electronic drum set by Carlsbro is their lowest priced kit. It is also one of the lowest priced kits on the market right now. The CSD130XXX competes with the Alesis Nitro Kit and Roland V-Drums TD-4K, which have an affordable electronic drum set for beginners.

The Carlsbro CSD130XXX is a great value electronic drum kit with great customer satisfaction. One reason is that of its durability. It has a compact and lightweight rack but is stable. The pads and cymbals are also made with quality rubber. This is backed by Carlsbro’s one-year limited warranty.

The CSD130 is an 8 piece electronic drum set which includes a dual-zone snare pad, three single zone tom pads, single zone hi-hat cymbal pad, single zone crash cymbal pad with choke, single zone ride cymbal pad with choke, hi-hat controller pedal, and bass pad with the kick pedal. Carlsbro listened to professional drummers and combined their recommendations with innovative technology to create an electronic kit that delivers the acoustic drum feel and sound. The pads are made with Silica and rubber.

This electronic drum kit also comes with Carlsbro’s Commander 150 drum module. The Commander 150 provides 250 CD quality percussion sounds with 10 user defined drum kits and 20 preset drum kits. It also comes with 20 demo songs to play along. The CSD130XXX features a USB interface and MIDI input/output, record and playback, adjustable sensitivity and crosstalk, Aux input, line output, headphone output, trigger curve settings, reverb, and metronome.

No electronic drum kit is perfect and the same goes for the Carlsbro CSD130XXX. There are reviews that the setup is not ideal with a manual that is hard to understand. I have also heard that the folding up of the kit can be difficult. The frame might be short for some players and the sounds might come up short.

The negative reviews and its faulty aspect do not make the drum set a poor product. It also does not mean that the drum set is not a great drum set. I believe the positive aspects of this drum set weighs more heavily than the negative reviews. Additionally, the price point is a major plus to this great product. If you want to check out this product for yourself, please visit this site with a review on the Carlsbro CSD130XXX, which compares all the positives and negatives between the Alesis Nitro Kit and Roland V-Drums TD-4K.

Apple Watch (smartwatch)

Smartwatch is one of the most popular gadgets today. Whether you are young or old, people wear them for different purposes such as convenience, necessity, or fashion. So, what is a smartwatch? A smartwatch is a watch that you wear on your wrist, and it basically replicates some of the functions of your smartphone. Smartwatches have evolved over the years and have become even more advanced. One of the first smartwatches that I remember is the Fitbit. Fitbit came out in 2013 and tracked the amount of steps you took as well as your sleeping patterns. In my opinion, the most revolutionary smartwatch was the first Apple Watch that came out in 2015, which is now considered the Series 1 because there are other models. The Apple Watch was one of the first popular “watch phones” that has similar functionality as your smartphone.

Now the latest Apple Watch is the Series 3. Not much of the watch design has changed, but the features and technology has improved tremendously. The Apple Watch Series 3 has a faster dual core Apple S3 processer and Apple W2 wireless chipset. It supports Bluetooth 4.2 and 802.11n Wi-Fi. The Series 3 also has a water resistant rating at 50 meters. Siri support is now built into watchOS 4, allowing you to ask Siri questions that you want answered, set reminders, share locations and more. The watch is great for swimmers who want to track their exercises, people who want to track their sleep cycles, or even for busy working parents who want to get immediate notifications in case they get a call from daycare or from their children’s schools.

The Apple Watch Series 3 comes with built-in support for GPS. Some additional sensors include the accelerometer, gyroscope, and heart-rate sensor. It also includes a barometric altimeter to measure flights of stairs you climbed. This is especially an excellent way to monitor your health condition by knowing your heart rate at all times.

The Apple Watch Series 3 comes in two different models: a GPS only model or GPS and Cellular model. It also comes in two different watch face dimensions, a 38mm and a 42mm, with different cases and straps. Typically, 38mm is more preferred by women and 42mm is more worn by men. I recently bought my wife the GPS only model as an anniversary present, and she absolutely loves everything about it. As mentioned above about being useful for parents, my wife is a teacher, and it is difficult for her to check her phone periodically throughout the day. However, being able to look at her phone through her Apple Watch, she can check messages and answer calls in case she receives and emergency calls.

The built-in LTE cellular feature is only available on Apple Watch Series 3 (GPS + Cellular) models. This allows for greater independence from your paired iPhone. Apple has also included an embedded eSIM. The eSIM copies information from your paired iPhone’s SIM card allowing you to share phone numbers. Setting up the Apple Watch Series 3 for LTE usage is very simple and is completed through the Watch application on your iPhone. The built-in cellular features require a carrier service plan that specifically includes support for the watch, and including the carrier activating the device on the plan.

E-Drums, what’s out there?

Choosing between an electronic drum kit and the acoustic set can be difficult. If your decision is based on noise and space, then the electronic drum set might be a better option for you. Here is some advice on how to pick the perfect electronic drum set for you.

Technology is evolving and advancing every day, and we want to make sure you get the drum kit you love. Checking out reviews on products is also important. This website Best Electronic Drum Sets has great reviews on some electronic drum kits and some great advice. There are many factors to consider before purchasing an electronic drum kit. These factors include price, space and size, sound and volume, feeling and sound quality, and durability.

Price is very important in making a decision on the best electronic drum kit for you. Determining your price range can help narrow down the choices you have. Something also to consider is that the kit you choose is ready to play right out of the box. Not all drum kits include everything you need in order to start playing, thus you will need to purchase few things to play the drum kit. This option may become costly because those necessary accessories will add up in the end.

Space is another important factor when deciding the best drum kit for you. Before you start shopping, you have to determine how much space you have available for your kit. Depending on your living situation not all electronic drum kits will work. A lot of the high-end electronic drum kits could have a larger or similar footprint to an acoustic set. At my church, our praise band uses an electronic drum because of its size and portability since they need to setup and tear down on a weekly basis and stores the equipment in a small room.

Sound is one of the most important aspects to consider in your decision. One of the major reasons for going with an electronic drum kit over an acoustic set is noise. Many think that all electronic drum sets are quiet but that is not true. The kick pad with pedal is usually the noisiest part of the electronic drum kit and most kits have loud kick pads. The drum pads on the electronic drum set come in different types that can help with volume. There are four different categories of pads: mesh-headed, closed-cell foam and silicone, rubber over steel, and acoustic-headed with dampening inside. The pad you want can help you narrow down the kit for you, but keep in mind that the type of pad can affect the feeling and sound quality.

Feeling and sound quality of the drum kit is a factor that can be subjective. You need to make sure the feeling of the pads and cymbals fit your playing style. Same goes for the sound quality. We all have different opinions about how the drum kit should sound. However, the sound quality that the manufacturer uses on their modules can also help you decide. Everyone wants a drum kit that sounds natural, something that sounds as close to the real thing.

Finally, there is durability of the drum set. Sometimes there is a reason why the electronic drum kit is at a lower price point. In order to get it to that price, the manufacturer had to compensate with its quality and durability. I believe most people would want some level of durability so that what you invested for this drum kit doesn’t go to waster after playing it a few times.

There are other factors that were not mentioned that you should look into and consider before purchasing a drum kit, but I thought these were few of the most important aspects to consider. I hope this helps you find the perfect electronic drum kit!

eSport games

Video games have always been popular, but it may be more popular now than ever before. It seems to be more popular today because of the emergence of electronic sports (eSports), electronic leagues (ELEAGUE), social media, and streaming. I also believe the growing popularity is from the money being involved with video games.

I now see video game tournaments and leagues being televised on TV. Some of the most popular eSports tournaments I have seen being televised are League of Legends (LOL), Counter Strike: Global Offensive, DOTA 2, and Overwatch. The wiki page on eSports breakdown some of the tournaments being played now. ELEAGUE is what I have seen on TBS where they broadcasting eSports leagues. I have personally watched Counter-Strike: GO and Overwatch games. You can even watch from the TBS website.

There is even an eSports league for the video NBA 2K, called the NBA 2K League, that is run by the NBA and a video game holding company, Two-Take Interactive. Players in this league are given a salary and have the opportunity to win more money through the championship and tournaments through the years. There was even a draft for this league where people are being drafted to the teams. I see highlights on NBA Facebook page, but I think the actual games are being streamed on Twitch. There is even an article on Forbes about NBA 2K League’s growing popularity. I even read an article of someone leaving their government job to join this league.

I would say Twitch is one of the most popular video game streaming website that came about around 2011 and became an Amazon subsidiary around 2014. Twitch is not the only place for people to live stream games and interact with viewers. I have also seen live streams on Facebook, Youtube, Smashcash.tv, and AfreecaTV. Live streaming popularity has also increased, and I have heard people now do live streaming as a profession. From this Forbes article you can see that video game streaming can be very lucrative but challenging as well. I am amazed how this can be a profession and one can earn money from sponsorship, donations, and subscriptions.

With the growing popularity of eSports I have also heard of colleges offering scholarships to students. Here is a list of colleges that have a varsity athletic program from ESPN. I played a lot of games when I was growing up, but I would have never thought that video games would become a source where you could get a college scholarship or even make a profession out of it.

You not only see investment from colleges in eSports, but also, there are celebrities who will invest in it. I saw an article on ESPN about Stephen Curry investing in eSports. Stephen Curry is one of the biggest basketball icons today, and it has great impact on this industry when someone like Stephen Curry is investing in eSports. This shows the growing popularity in eSports, and the potential of the eSports market becoming very successful.

Electronic Wind Instruments

Flutes are considered to be the first musical instrument to be created. The flute is in the woodwind family of musical instruments. However, flutes give a different aspect of woodwind than any other woodwind instruments because it does not require a reed, which makes it an aerophone or reedless woodwind instrument. The flute generates its sound by the flow of air across the opening of the instrument on one end.

The flutes can be broken into a few major categories or classes which includes the traverse, end-blown, and fipple flutes. Flutes can also be in different forms where the keys have closed holes or open holes. There are no differences in sounds between the two, but the open holes require different techniques, and it also encourages proper finger position on the keys.

A transverse flute also called the side-blown flute is a flute, which is held horizontally when it is played. It is played by blowing across the lipping hole, in a direction perpendicular to the flute’s body. Transverse flutes include the Western Classical concert flutes, fife, dizi, piccolo, bansuri, and Japanese/Korean flutes.

The end-blown flute, also known as the edge-blown or rim-blown flute, is keyless and played by blowing air through the sharp upper end of the flute. End-blown flutes are widespread in folk music and art music. Some examples of end-blown flutes are the ney, kaval, xiao, Anasazi flute, quena, shakuhachi, and danso.

The fipple flute is similar to the end-blown flute but has a duct inside the flute that directs the air above and below the sharp edge of a hole. The whistle, gemshorn, recorder, tin whistle, flageolet, fujara, ocarina, and tonette are all fipple flutes.

My wife played the flute growing up. She began playing at the age of 12 and continued playing for about 13 years. She took private lessons from a renowned flutist residing in Dallas, Texas. She enjoyed going on competitions and performing in front of a crowd. She was mainly a solo flutist, but she often did duets with other flutists or with a piano accompaniment. The two-flute duo or when accompanied by a piano creates a beautiful melody that is very enjoyable to the audiences’ ears.

Instruments have come a long way in quality and sound. More impressively, many instruments have a digital counterpart. Even flutes have a digital version that sounds very similar to that of a Western classical concert flute. To get a better idea of what that looks like, check out this digital instrument that can mimic many of the woodwind instruments.

With one digital instrument, Electronic Wind Instrument (EWI), you can play music with the sounds of many instruments. Now, that is impressive! I know the true sound of the real instrument is a lot better than any digital sounds, but the flexibility of only needing one device to play multiple sounds is perfect for a multi-instrument player. Also, check out this review and video of the Roland Aerophone AE-10 from djmag. I didn’t realize the popularity of these EWIs until I saw them at guitarcenter.

Perhaps Best E-drums need to add the digital wind instrument to their list of electronic instruments, which will be a fascinating addition to completing a band!

Acoustic vs Digital Piano

Not only are there debates about acoustic drums versus electronic drums, but also there are debates about all traditional instruments versus their digital counterpart. I believe the debate of an acoustic piano versus digital piano is similar to the debate between an acoustic drum and an electronic drum.

There are three major types of pianos today. You have your digital pianos, upright pianos, and grand pianos. There are also many brands out on the market today whereas no two pianos are alike and each has its own characteristics. The pianos vary in size, sound, touch, feel, and price. The only brands I believe are worth spending the big bucks are the major Japanese or Italian brands: Kawai, Casio, Yamaha, Roland, Dexibell, and Korg are the ones I would highly recommend.

Just like acoustic drums, arguably the major difference and biggest benefit of an acoustic piano over the digital piano is the touch and feel. Based on the force of which you prefer to play the keys can produce a more powerful and louder sound. There are higher quality digital pianos that can imitate this effect but a majority of the digital pianos do not. Many people also say the touch response on an acoustic and digital piano is different, which can make it hard to switch between the two. The feel of an acoustic piano is important to many people. Being able to feel the weight and texture of the keys is great. Many digital pianos with higher qualities also try to mimic the weight and texture of the keys. The other benefit of the acoustic piano is the sound. The true sound with better sound resonance due to the reverberations created when the hammer strikes the string after a key is pressed. This is hard to replicate on digital pianos. These realistic features on a digital piano come with a high price.

The benefits of the digital piano are very similar to that of the electronic drum. Volume control is a big benefit since the sound is digital and amplified by speakers. You can control the noise, as well as put on a headset.  Portability is also an advantage the digital piano has over the acoustic piano. Digital pianos can be much lighter and have a smaller frame compared to an acoustic piano. If space is a concern the digital piano could be a better fit. Like the electronic drum, the versatility of the digital piano is also an advantage. The ability to change the sound of different instruments and being able to play along with other beats is a great advantage. Some digital pianos also have the capability to record what you are playing.

Everyone always says that there is nothing like the real thing. I can understand where people are coming from but I also think that digital pianos have their benefits. Watch this video and I will let you decide on the appropriate piano for you. It may not just be the argument of acoustic versus digital, but the quality of the piano and the piano that fits your current lifestyle may be the one that suits you the best.

Your very first music instrument lesson

This video is pretty awesome. You can learn how to play drums watching this video. There are many people want to learn and pick up their dream instrument. Personally, my 5-year-old is learning how to play violin right now. It’s one of the cutest things I ever have seen in my life. The first month of the lesson isn’t fun. It is all about learning your instrument. You get to pick up the name of instrument parts, what each of the parts does, and when/how to use them at the right moment. You have to endure several months of practicing the same stuff. Then you will get your instrument to be part of you and you get to have the fundamental basic stuff engraved in your body.

Acoustic Drum vs Electronic Drum

There are many different types of drums today. The first acoustic drums were introduced in the early 1800s. Many percussionists developed a drum kit set by adding different parts to it. However, many years later, the first electronic drum set was invented during the 1980s. Professional percussionists found them to be innovative and more convenient because the drum set provided more various sound options without having to add extra drum parts. Not only did it provide more sounds, but it also took up less space and made it portable.  

There are continuous debates about acoustic drums versus electronic drums. Some people believe that only the acoustic or what they call traditional drum is considered a true drum set, where they do not consider electronic drums as real drums. I have experiences in playing both types of drum sets. I got my first set of acoustic drum set when I was in middle school. I still remember the way I used to drum on the traditional drum sets with the wooden sticks. Then, I bought my first electronic drum sets when I went to college. I have always loved playing on my traditional drum set, but the electronic drum set had a lot to offer as well.  Although many people have their preferred drum type and are biased toward one specific type of a drum set, it is hard to say that one is real and the other is not.

Most drummers started out their drumming experience with an acoustic or the traditional drum set. One of the major differences and the biggest advantage of the traditional drum over an electronic drum is the ability to play with more feel and touch. With the traditional drum, you can play soft to very loud. Cymbal washes are possible with acoustic drums unlike a majority of the electronic drums. You can also learn and perform drum rolls, buzz rolls, cymbal swells, and hi-hat technique; and not to mention, cross sticks better and more realistically on acoustic drums than on an electronic drum. Traditional drums are more sensitive and the level of dynamics and different sounds that can be created from the drums and cymbals themselves is far superior and more realistic to those of an electric drum kit. There is something about the traditional drums that can never be fully replicated by the electronic drum and I think that is why the acoustic drum will never go away. Unlike electronic drums, acoustic drums are tunable in many different ways, allowing the drummer to create sounds for the music they want to play. Besides the feel and sound of the drums, the look of an acoustic drum set is more appealing than that of an electronic drum set. Traditional drums can come in various sizes, colors, and type, which make them customizable to every individual. The positioning options of an acoustic drum set are superior to the electronic drum set allowing angles and heights of drums to be placed where you want due to advanced adjustable stands. Finally, the last benefit that might be surprising to people is that acoustic drums can be cheaper than electronic drum sets for beginners. This is because used acoustic drums are more reliable and less of a risk than a used electronic drum set, so you can easily build an acoustic drum set. Acoustic drumheads and other general parts can be less expensive to source and purchase than electric ones.

One of the greatest benefits that an electronic drum set has to offer is its ability to control the noise level on the drum. The noise control option allows the percussionists to play at their normal strength and speed without waking up their roommate or their next door neighbor. Being able to practice anywhere without having to worry about disturbing people near you is a huge advantage for drummers. As previously mentioned by professional percussionists, the portability piece that most electronic drum sets offer is a tremendous advantage. Traditional drums are usually bulky and not easily transportable, while most electronic drum sets are compact and lightweight. Electronic drum sets are also convenient in limited space spots. Electronic drums take up a lot less space and can be stored away very easily when not in use. Another reason that makes electronic drum sets charismatic is that of its versatility. As all know, traditional drums have specific sounds from specific parts of the drum. However, electronic drums not only have the sounds like the traditional drum set, but it has the ability to play different sounds like digital sounds that can easily be changed with a touch of a button. With that said, if you are in a mood to drum a beat with a traditional sound, or in a mood to drum more house music type of sound, then electronic drum set can cater to our preference in one sitting.

I wanted to share this Youtube video that portrays great comparisons on the acoustic versus electronic drums.

Also, check out the Best E-Drums website, which has some great reviews and advice on acoustic drums versus electronic drums.