HomePod Mini

I have an old Sonos speaker in my bedroom/office. I’m listening to an episode of the StarTalk Radio podcast through it as I type this. It’s too old to support Apple’s AirPlay so I have to use the Sonos App. It’s fine for the most part. I can run AppleMusic through it, but not Apple Podcasts. I had to setup Stitcher in order to play podcasts through the speaker.

The lack of AirPlay has meant that I have always wanted to upgrade to something newer so that I could just play my iPhone or my iPad directly through the speaker.

Along with the old Sonos speaker in the bedroom, we have additional Sonos speakers in the living room, and in the office proper. Our home theater system is all Sonos. Those are all newer models that support AirPlay.

We also have an Apple HomePod in the living room. It’s a great speaker, but more often than not the Sonos is the go-to when we want to play music through a speaker.

Yesterday Apple had their media event for the new iPhones. The iPhone 12 Pro Max looks awesome. That’s not what really caught my attention though. The standout to me was the new HomePod Mini. Not because of anything it does, but because of the price.

Given my interest in upgrading the speaker in the bedroom/office.. the original HomePod sells for about $300. The Sonos One runs for about $180, and the Move costs about $400.

The new HomePod Mini costs $99. That’s interesting. It does exactly what I want it to do, and it ties into my existing system, and it’s a lot cheaper than the alternatives.

Interesting………

Bose

We bought my wife a nice set of Bose speakers for her computer for her birthday last year. Since then she bought a high end sound system that blows the system we got out of the water. She gave me the Bose set a few months ago but I took my sweet time hooking it up.

Until today. It’s a massive upgrade over what I had before. Now I just want to sit at my desk with the volume cranked, feeling the sub woofer shake the floor.


Awesome!

I Can Post Audio Files on WordPress.com? Who Knew?

So yeah, I can post audio files on wordpress.com without having to go through soundcloud or anything like that. Granted, the browser needs to support HTML5. That means that this blog now officially endorses Google Chrome as it’s browser of choice. Hurrah.

It’s not much, but it seems to work. Hows about I share a Break Even song as a test. This is “Black Mark (live)” from the CD The Right Place. Fortunately for your ears, I didn’t write it. Unfortunately for your ears, I did way over play.

http://alonetone.com/robertjames1971/tracks/break-even-black-mark-live.mp3%20

Headphones

I think I might have stumbled upon one of the reasons that my home recordings sound like utter shit. One of the many, many reasons. Turns out my headphones suck like no headphones have ever sucked before.

I think it was 2003 or 2004 when I bought myself an 8-track recorder and a 16 channel board. I bought a pair of headphones from radio shack at the same time. I didn’t buy their cheapest cans, but I didn’t buy their best either. All I wanted was something better than the cheap crap that came with my portable CD player. Over the years I went through a few pairs of headphones, but I never invested in anything terribly good.

Today I was recording guitars on my iPhone and iPad so I used my radio shack cans. I didn’t think anything of it. At least not until a few minutes ago when I brought up the music app and tried to play the indie rock genius mix playlist.

Uh oh, thinks I. This sounds freakin’ terrible! 100 times worse than the Apple ear buds. What the hell?

For Christmas I got my beautiful wife a pair of Bose QC 15s. I plugged those into my iPad and low and behold! It was like listening to 90’s indie rock in heaven. I swear, Urge Overkill and The Breeders wouldn’t have sounded that good if they were in the room with me.

Yeah, definitely time for an upgrade in the headphones department. I’m not talking about getting QC 15s or anything like that, but the time for decent headphones has arrived at last.