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Prog - - Intro -

Rho­dri Mars­den on three of the lat­est must-have giz­mos cur­rently putting

the prog in progress…


Gui­tars can be a bit cum­ber­some. This has spawned the in­ven­tion of a prac­tice in­stru­ment called the Cross Gui­tar, al­though the un­in­ten­tion­ally hi­lar­i­ous pro­mo­tional video ex­ag­ger­ates the prob­lem a bit. It’s es­sen­tially a strung plank with two fold-out arms, al­low­ing you to prac­tice on some­thing that feels gui­tar-y but has much less bulk. It won’t sound par­tic­u­larly good, but that’s not the point; guitarists keen to re­fine their tech­nique have al­ready funded it five times over on Kick­starter.


WOW 17-9000

I be­came in­trigued the other day by a wave of por­ta­ble Blue­tooth speak­ers that proudly boast their re­sis­tance to cer­tain depths of wa­ter. I can un­der­stand watches be­ing given such rat­ings, but if you want to lis­ten to mu­sic, do you want to sit un­der­wa­ter? (I don’t.) This beast, which boasts 50 hours of bat­tery life and 360º sound, is rated IP67, which means you can keep it one me­tre un­der­wa­ter for 30 min­utes. But it also floats. Which means that to test its re­silience you’ll need to sit on it in a swim­ming pool.



Frus­trated drum­mers like my­self who en­joy tap­ping on ta­bles (and ir­ri­tat­ing any­one nearby) will rel­ish Specdrums, which are small rings that you slip onto your tap­ping fingers. Those rings con­nect with an app and trans­form those taps into sound; the clever bit, how­ever, is that the sound pro­duced de­pends on the colour you’re tap­ping on. The rings come with a 12-colour key­board, but you could just as eas­ily as­sign sounds to a book cover, your jeans and a table­top to pro­duce an in­stant drum kit.


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