Dreo PolyFan 513S Air Circulator Fan

You can find just about any product these days with an app that can be called a “smart” product or a smart home product but with a lot of those the functionality that it adds isn’t worth it at all and it is all just added to be able to throw a few more features on to the box and online listing. I came across the Dreo PolyFan and when I saw it had an app, I assumed it would fall into the same category. Checking it out though it did pique my interest. It had both horizontal and vertical oscillation and both can be controlled with the remote or the app. I can’t be the only person who has gotten completely comfortable in bed and realized that my fan wasn’t blowing in the right direction or speed. I use a smart outlet to be able to turn it off with google voice if I’m cold, but being able to change the aim or speed that could be useful if it works well. It is of course peak laziness, but a lot of smart home products would fall into that. Today I’m going to check out the Dreo PolyFan 513S Air Circulator Fan and find out if being able to change those things remotely with the app or remote is worth the extra cost.

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eufy Mach V1 Ultra

Keeping your floors clean is a lot more than just sweeping or vacuuming up the dust and dirt that you see, it is really easy to just get the dust and dirt and ignore things until something is spilled. Then of course it isn’t just a simple once-over with the mop. I’m bad with this, even though I want to keep our floors clean I would also prefer to spend my time doing something else. Because of that, I’ve been considering getting something to simplify things like a steam mop to sanitize and clean but a lot of the options out there just use microfiber pads and I don’t have any interest in having to replace them constantly. Eufy recently announced their Mach V1 and the Mach V1 Ultra which both combine a vacuum design that has a brush to pick up dirt and also scrubs. The Mach V1 Ultra then also adds in steam as well, covering everything I was looking for, but how well does it work? Well, today I’m going to check out what the Mach V1 Ultra has to offer and then see how it performs.

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eufy Security E130 Smart Lock Touch

This past January I took a look at eufy security's new eufy Security Video Smart Lock which integrated video doorbell features with a smart lock and I was really happy with the device but sadly it didn’t fit our unique front door so it was put to use on our detached garage. Being able to come and go through the garage with just a fingerprint or a code has been great but it has made one thing really obvious, we need the same setup on the back door of the house so we can come and go while keeping things locked up and never having to get our keys out. An integrated doorbell or video camera wasn’t needed so I set my eyes on the E130 Smart Lock Touch which has the fingerprint sensor and keypad at a much lower price. I’ve finally done it and today I’m going to check out the E130 to see what is different about it and find out if it's worth getting if you want to come and go easily from the house this summer.

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Eufy Security S100 Wired Wall Light Cam

The eufy security brand from Anker has had a range of indoor and outdoor camera options including multiple that we have taken a look at. Up until now though each has been an improvement on products that we have seen from other companies like the Floodlight Pro 2 having a pan and tilt camera, the Video Doorbell Dual having a second camera to keep an eye on packages, and most recently the Video Smart Lock which combines a smart lock, doorbell, and video camera. Their latest camera though is a little different. The S100 Wired Wall Light Cam takes what they have been doing with the floodlight cameras and does the same thing with another outside light. In some situations, it is nice to have your camera visible as a deterrent, but other times something more discrete is better for the job and that’s where the S100 fits in with it being a camera in an outside wall sconce. So today I’m going to check it out, install it, and then see how it performs.

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eufy Security Video Smart Lock

The popularity of video doorbells has taken off over the last few years but long before that people have been upgrading their locks. Starting with older programable locks with codes which have now moved on to full smart locks that can be controlled by codes, your smartphone, and even by fingerprints. What if you combined those two together? That is what eufy Security did with their latest security product, the Video Smart Lock. They took their previous smart lock which had a touch screen and a fingerprint sensor and integrated one of their 2k resolution cameras into it and a doorbell button. Together they eliminate the need for two different products at your front door. I’ve been putting it to the test so today we will take a closer look at it and then go over how it has been working. Let’s get into it!

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eufy Security Floodlight Cam 2 Pro

It used to be rare for people to have cameras around their homes but with doorbell cameras becoming more and more common, once people buy in with a doorbell camera you do sometimes see them adding more. Another location where you see cameras being added is with floodlights because they are higher up and get a lot better coverage than your doorbell cameras but you are limited to where the camera is pointed. Eufy Security has a few standard options, but their Floodlight Cam 2 Pro caught my eye because not only does it have three lights for better light coverage, it also has a 2K pan/tilt camera built-in meaning you don’t have to be stuck with one view. We were upgrading the lighting in and on our garage which is a good time to check out the Floodlight Cam 2 Pro to see how it performs.

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eufy Security Garage-Control Cam Plus

When we moved into our house and moved our camera system over getting a camera inside of our detached garage was one of the key locations. We had previously had an attached garage where I felt like I would at least be able to hear if someone was in there. But being detached just about anything could be going on in there without us knowing it and with our cars, lawn equipment, and a lot of tools inside being able to keep an eye inside was important. It also turned out to be a great indication of when my wife and I were home. I later added an app-based garage door controller as well but both were tied into two different systems meaning more than one app. Eufy Security recently introduced a new camera that combines both of these. They aren’t the first to have a similar product, but if you are already in the eufy ecosystem having it all together is a big benefit. They have two models of the eufy Security Garage Control Cam, one for a single door setup and a second that can handle two garage doors. Today I’m going to check out the Garage Control Cam Plus and see how eufy’s attempt at garage control and surveillance works out.

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eufy RoboVac X8

It’s interesting because you would think given my interest in technology and smart home devices not to mention laziness when it comes to cleaning that we would have had a robotic vacuum in the house years ago. With having pets and a multi-story house I didn’t think a robotic vacuum would meet our expectations and given how much they cost I didn’t want to waste that money so we invested in a Dyson Animal vacuum and called it a day. Since then though we have moved and have most of our house on one level and I’ve seen that at least some of the robotic vacuums can better handle pet hair. Already having a few eufy devices in the house their RoboVac’s caught my eye and their latest RoboVac X8 which has dual motors has the potential to handle our situation so I thought I would give it a try and find out. So today I’m going to check out what features the X8 has then go through my experience setting it up and using It in our home so let’s dive in!

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WaterGuru SENSE

While sometimes smart home products can come off as lazy, but I know for me the goal is to simplify things to free up time for activities that I enjoy. As a homeowner with a pool, starting in the spring I have a long list of things to get done to open up the pool. Once I get all of that done I then have to stay on top of things to keep it clean and clear which even if you run a chlorinator or use tablets with a floaty you should still be keeping a close eye on your levels. You might be able to find a remote temperature gauge, but checking your FC and PH on the other hand you will need to be there. But I recently came across the WaterGuru SENSE which claims to be able to do just that and I’m interested in finding out how well it would work for me and today I’m going to check it out and see what the WaterGuru Sense is all about.

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eufy Security Video Doorbell Dual

It’s interesting how over the years the number of smart home devices in our home has grown with a majority of our lighting integrated, smart speakers in key rooms to control things and for music/questions, and we have a good set of security cameras outside to keep an eye on things all of the time and some inside for when we are away. But one of the most quintessential “smart home” devices the video doorbell still hasn’t been added into the mix. It isn’t that I haven’t wanted one, but for a long time I was holding out trying to find one that could integrate without Blue Iris camera setup but there haven’t been much for options, and companies have been trending more and more to their own ecosystems so I decided why wait any longer let's make the step. So let’s check out the eufy Security Video Doorbell Dual camera which has a second downward-facing camera to keep an eye out for and on packages.

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Nvidia Shield TV 2019

The original Nvidia Shield TV launched back in 2015 and was updated again in early 2017. When the first version launched my household was still running traditional cable TV along with servers hosting backups of our movies and TV shows just being fed to traditional HTPCs where needed. When we moved, to keep costs down I was looking to cut out cable but not lose the functionality and the original Shield TV as well as the Shield TV 2017 really helped with that by combining them with Plex and PlayStation Vue and I even was able to tie in Samsung’s SmartThings as well and use the Shield TV as a hub. I talked about both in THIS article. Well, Nvidia is at it again with the new for 2019 (hey it came in a little late lol) Shield TV with an updated Tegra X1+ SoC and a new form factor as well for the non-pro model. Today I’m going to check it out!

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Dropping cable with the Nvidia Shield TV

For years my wife and I dropped cable television simply because we didn’t have the money for it in our budget. Then eventually we added back a basic package and were okay with that. Fast forward 6 years later and we are spending a fortune and have every channel under the sun. What happened was they slowly offered us deals that added additional channels, we started watching shows on those channels and then when the deal went away I would call and tell them I was going to drop it all and they would add even more channels to get me to stay. When we bought a new house though it was finally time to find a better option to save some money and it just so happened that Nvidia had sent out their Shield TV to us and it was sitting unused. So today I’m going to talk a little about how I dropped cable by using the Shield TV and I’ve been loving it.

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Nest Thermostat and Protect

As you guys have most likely noticed, things have been slow around here for a few months now. In addition to being sick a few times and hurting my back. We also bought a new house and had been working on the move and later doing work around the house. One of the best parts about moving and getting a new place is that I finally have an excuse to take a closer look at more of the home automation and smart home products that have been coming out. Even before the move I had a few things already planned and upgrading to a smart thermostat was one of them. Well, I reached out to Nest and they sent over a new Gen 3 Thermostat as well as one of their Nest Protect smoke and CO detectors. I finally have some time with both and wanted to run through what they do and how they have performed for me so far.

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TP-Link LB130 WiFi LED Bulb with RGB

The idea of a smart home really started to pick up in the late 90’s but it really wasn’t until recently when wireless technology got small enough to be integrated into various devices around your house. The whole idea that every device and part of your house would be wired together was expensive and took a lot of work. Recently though you start to see lots of devices come with wireless integration, hell even my humidifier connects to my wireless network. But the whole idea really comes together when LEDs, wireless, and smartphone all come together. That is why you are starting to see new lightbulbs that can be controlled remotely that plug into standard light sockets. TP-Link has jumped on board with the whole idea and has a whole mix of smart home products. They sent over their LB130, a WiFi capable LED light bulb with fully integrated RGB lighting as well. So I’ve been messing around with today we are going to check out what it's about. Is the smart home finally here? Let's find out!

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