Last fall a device idea appeared on Kickstarter, the Sabinetek SmartMike+. It promised a Bluetooth lavalier microphone with high quality. As most who have used Bluetooth (especially on Linux) know, the microphone support is kind of terrible, you delve into profiles involving phrases like HSP/HFP, and quickly find that you sound .... like a telephone.
Intrigued, but its kind of expensive @ $160, and, I have the Rode Wireless Go which is pretty fantastic (but not Bluetooth). So I let it go.
After some time I start to see SmartMic (not Mike+) appear online, for about $90. It doesn't look quite the same (its round instead of rectangular), but the specs are very similar. So, I hit the buy now button.
And, here we are, photo above, pen for scale. Its light. So, I try it out, the box and extensive user guide (reproduced below) are pretty unabashed. Use the SmartMike+ app. So I do. That my friends, is a terrible application. Its only more terrible since they suggest you have no choice but to use it, that somehow this is not a standard Bluetooth device. It suggests somehow that it streams a bit live and stores the rest for retrieval at higher rate.
I will say, the audio quality was very good for a Bluetooth lavalier. If you used this for a conference call you would be very happy. Maybe even a podcast.
So, lets press on, I'm sure they aren't redoing the Bluetooth stack in Android. So I pair it to the PC. Story checks out, looks like every other Bluetooth headset w/ APT/X, AAC, HSP/HFP profiles. I record some audio in the HSP/HFP profile. Hmm, its ok, not as good as their app. It cuts off at 3500Hz (sharply), so I'm assuming that is the SBC codec.
Let's look at the profiles:
Service Name: Hands-Free unit Service RecHandle: 0x10000 Service Class ID List: "Handsfree" (0x111e) "Generic Audio" (0x1203) Protocol Descriptor List: "L2CAP" (0x0100) "RFCOMM" (0x0003) Channel: 10 Language Base Attr List: code_ISO639: 0x656e encoding: 0x6a base_offset: 0x100 Profile Descriptor List: "Handsfree" (0x111e) Version: 0x0106 Service Name: Headset Service RecHandle: 0x10001 Service Class ID List: "Headset" (0x1108) "" (0x1131) "Generic Audio" (0x1203) Protocol Descriptor List: "L2CAP" (0x0100) "RFCOMM" (0x0003) Channel: 11 Language Base Attr List: code_ISO639: 0x656e encoding: 0x6a base_offset: 0x100 Profile Descriptor List: "Headset" (0x1108) Version: 0x0102 Service RecHandle: 0x10002 Service Class ID List: "Audio Sink" (0x110b) Protocol Descriptor List: "L2CAP" (0x0100) PSM: 25 "AVDTP" (0x0019) uint16: 0x0103 Profile Descriptor List: "Advanced Audio" (0x110d) Version: 0x0103 Service RecHandle: 0x10003 Service Class ID List: "PnP Information" (0x1200) Service RecHandle: 0x10004 Service Class ID List: "AV Remote" (0x110e) "AV Remote Controller" (0x110f) Protocol Descriptor List: "L2CAP" (0x0100) PSM: 23 "AVCTP" (0x0017) uint16: 0x0104 Profile Descriptor List: "AV Remote" (0x110e) Version: 0x0105 Service RecHandle: 0x10005 Service Class ID List: "AV Remote Target" (0x110c) Protocol Descriptor List: "L2CAP" (0x0100) PSM: 23 "AVCTP" (0x0017) uint16: 0x0104 Profile Descriptor List: "AV Remote" (0x110e) Version: 0x0105 Service Name: M_MIKE_SLV Service RecHandle: 0x10007 Service Class ID List: "Serial Port" (0x1101) Protocol Descriptor List: "L2CAP" (0x0100) "RFCOMM" (0x0003) Channel: 14 Language Base Attr List: code_ISO639: 0x656e encoding: 0x6a base_offset: 0x100
index: 4 name: <bluez_card.54_B7_E5_61_0B_B5> driver: <module-bluez5-device.c> owner module: 27 properties: device.description = "SmartMic" device.string = "54:B7:E5:61:0B:B5" device.api = "bluez" device.class = "sound" device.bus = "bluetooth" device.form_factor = "headphone" bluez.path = "/org/bluez/hci0/dev_54_B7_E5_61_0B_B5" bluez.class = "0x240418" bluez.alias = "SmartMic" device.icon_name = "audio-headphones-bluetooth" profiles: headset_head_unit: Headset Head Unit (HSP/HFP) (priority 30, available: unknown) a2dp_sink_sbc: High Fidelity Playback (A2DP Sink: SBC) (priority 40, available: yes) a2dp_sink_aac: High Fidelity Playback (A2DP Sink: AAC) (priority 40, available: no) a2dp_sink_aptx: High Fidelity Playback (A2DP Sink: aptX) (priority 40, available: no) a2dp_sink_aptx_hd: High Fidelity Playback (A2DP Sink: aptX HD) (priority 40, available: no) a2dp_sink_ldac: High Fidelity Playback (A2DP Sink: LDAC) (priority 40, available: no) off: Off (priority 0, available: yes) active profile: <a2dp_sink_sbc>
Interestingly I cannot run avinfo:
./avinfo 54:B7:E5:61:0B:B5 Connecting ... Connect failed. Connection refused(111)
So, I'm not sure what is next. Their app is terrible. The audio and video are wholely unsynced. It has some spinning pink cloud to play back the audio later. No auto sync to Google Drive. Its, ugh.
What I was hoping was a high fidelity Bluetooth microphone, and use w/ Audacity. What I got, well, more hacking will be needed!
Earlier I showed my results for the Covid Tracker (which allows you to log on your phone the hash-key of others who are nearby in case they become infected).
I had some discussion with people about what the ~400 meant. Was that 400 keys I was near? Was it 400/14 for the duration? Interestingly, it then dropped, and is now quite variable.
Have you looked at yours? If you haven't installed yet, get on it! https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/diseases/coronavirus-disease-covid-19/covid-alert.html . Why wouldn't you track yourself? Its not sharing your data, its letting you track yourself.
Last week I wrote about the 3rd generation heated handle grip plan. Safer, better, simpler, right?
Well, all the parts are in and here. 3S2P 18650 pack, grips, let's go. Turn it on, let it come up to temperature... What's that? 93C? That might be warm on the fingers.
Now, I suppose once it is on a metal handlebar, and, its -10C outside, this will probably come down a bit. But, um... hmmmm.
Phase 1 was the heated gloves. On a scale of 0 to 10, they get a 2. Provided limited warmth, offset by the terrible gloves, hard to charge, no heating on 1 finger and 1 thumb, do not recommend.
Phase 2 was the nichrome + hockey tape. On a scale of 1 to 10, these get 7. super warm. In fact, there was considerable fire risk, no control system or limiter. I powered these off a 20000mAh battery, it would make it for about 45 min of use. They were coupled with the ridiculous-looking bear paws. Bear paws plus hockey tape made this bulky, perhaps dangerous, but warmish even in cold weather.
OK, no more messing around. This winter we are going hard. A 3S2P 18650 pack, delivering 12-ishV, and, these generic handle bar warmers. I hooked them up to the bench supply, @ 12V on low it draws 1.75A, on high it draws 2.25A. So ~27W. ~15W/hand. Should be good for about about ~50Wh, or about 1.5 hours of usage. Now I just have to install, route some cables, bolt the
Of course I will still go with the block heater. That worked pretty well.