Belkin’s MagSafe Mount for Desktops and Shows, Hand Mirror, and the Logitech Crayon

It’s the top of the 12 months, and earlier than I take a number of days off to chill out for the vacations, I’ve a number of cool issues to share which were sitting on my desk and Mac for a little bit bit.

The Belkin Mount with MagSafe for Mac Desktops and Shows

One among macOS Ventura’s flagship options is Continuity Digicam, which helps you to use an iPhone’s digital camera as a webcam. I coated Continuity Digicam in my Ventura assessment, and it really works rather well, particularly with Middle Stage turned off, so that you get the total uncropped picture from the iPhone’s digital camera.

Alongside Continuity Digicam, Belkin launched a wonderful, compact MagSafe mount for Apple Laptops however left desktop and exterior show customers hanging. Final week, desktop customers acquired their want for the same resolution, with a double-hinged MagSafe Mount that I anticipate will work on a piece with a variety of shows.

Belkin despatched me its new mount to strive final week, and I instantly gave it a strive. The {hardware} has a pleasant, stable really feel. The hinges are stiff, so your iPhone’s weight received’t have an effect on your setup, and each floor that touches your show, back and front, in addition to your iPhone, has a soft-touch end that shouldn’t scratch your show or telephone.

The MagSafe pad that holds your iPhone may be slid to the entrance of the system’s bracket or again. Shifting the pad again permits the underside of the iPhone to take a seat behind your show for vertical video. Shift it to the ahead place for panorama video. There’s additionally a gap within the bracket for screwing the mount to a tripod as a substitute of hooking it in your show, and the mount folds onto itself, so it’s comparatively compact if it’s good to journey with it.

At present, the Belkin MagSafe Mount is out of inventory on Belkin’s web site however may be ordered from Apple for supply in late January within the US and another international locations.

Hand Mirror

Hand Mirror 2.0 is a wonderful companion for Belkin’s MagSafe mount. The app allows you to preview what you’ll seem like on digital camera earlier than you begin your subsequent video name. The app sits in your Mac’s menu bar, so earlier than you begin a name, it’s straightforward to test whether or not you’ve acquired one thing in your face or if the mess behind you is seen.

The most recent model introduces Hand Mirror Plus, an In-App Buy that unlocks new performance. My favourite function is the Sensible Window, which you’ll be able to park in 9 completely different preset places, drag round, and resize all you need, like proper under your digital camera, so you possibly can each look into the digital camera and monitor your self on the similar time. The window will also be masked to suit your video feed right into a sq. or circle. There are alternatives to set off Hand Mirror’s window while you drag your pointer over a Mac laptop computer’s notch if it has one and several other alternate icons for the menu bar and Dock.

I’ve been doing extra video calls this 12 months, and I’m nonetheless not a giant fan of them. Nonetheless, I do respect having instruments like Hand Mirror to assist me get arrange and test what my stream goes to take a look at earlier than I drop right into a name. I might additionally see it as a alternative for dearer and complicated display recording apps when mixed with an app like CleanShot X. Display screen recording apps can do extra, however that’s not one thing I all the time want.

Hand Mirror is on the market on the Mac App Retailer as a free obtain. The Hand Mirror Plus options may be unlocked for a one-time cost of $4.99 (with an choice to pay $10.99).

Logitech Crayon

I’m not an artist, and though I like having the choice to put in writing immediately on my iPad Professional’s display, I don’t use it often. It seems that makes me the best viewers for Logitech’s Crayon, an iPad stylus that doesn’t assist all of the options discovered within the Apple Pencil however is extra reasonably priced.

Logitech’s Crayon jogs my memory of FiftyThree’s stylus, which was known as the Pencil and predated Apple’s Pencil. The Crayon has an analogous flat, rectangular barrel that’s product of aluminum and feels good within the hand. The sharp finish of the Crayon isn’t that a lot completely different than the Apple Pencil, with a tip that may be changed. Nonetheless, the other finish is kind of completely different. There, you’ll discover a bodily on/off swap and a USB-C port for charging, as a result of in contrast to the Apple Pencil, the Crayon doesn’t hook up with the iPad magnetically for charging. For somebody like me, who doesn’t use a stylus often, that’s a giant plus. I haven’t run any scientific checks, however I’ve been happy with how effectively the Crayon holds a cost when turned off and left unused for a lot of days. Plus, a fast cost with a USB-C cable costs the Crayon shortly, so it’s prepared for motion. Logitech says the battery helps seven hours of writing time.

The draw back of the Crayon in contrast with the Apple Pencil is that it doesn’t assist a number of ranges of strain sensitivity or the double-tap gesture for switching between instruments. Nonetheless, the Crayon can change line widths as you tilt it. In case you’re like me and also you largely use a stylus for taking notes or creating tough sketches or doodles, that’s wonderful. Apple’s Freeform doesn’t even assist strain sensitivity, so the Crayon works equally effectively with it because the Apple Pencil does. Nonetheless, if you happen to’re an artist, you’d in all probability really feel overly constrained by the Crayon.

So, sure, the Crayon is a restricted model of the Apple Pencil in some respects. However at $69.99, the Crayon can also be extra reasonably priced, with a price ticket that I anticipate is extra engaging to anybody who doesn’t anticipate to make use of a stylus often.

The Crayon is on the market from all kinds of shops, together with the Apple Retailer and Logitech’s web site.

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