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Monday, December 22, 2014

Virgin Islands 2014 Wrap Up: Equipment Reviews

After this past trip, I found the following pieces of equipment particularly useful:

  • Anker 40W 5-Port Desktop USB Charger: This was an amazing piece of equipment, charging all the electronics plugged into the boat over the 2 hours a day of engine time we had. Since the only power available on the boat was during those 2 hours and through an inverter with only 2 power plugs and 2 USB ports, this was huge.
  • Sony RX100: When I first got the RX100, I was mad at Sony for charging through a slow micro-USB port, rather than a fast brick charger like all the other cameras. This trip made me see the light. While other cameras would have hogged the sole inverter on the boat, this camera happily lived off the Anker charging port, and got plugged in often enough that battery life was never an issue.
  • Monoprice Waterproof RX100 Camera Dive Housing: Cheap and worked. Enough said.
  • T-mobile international roaming plan: Last time, we paid for an expensive internet device that didn't work half as well as our smart phone roaming on T-mobile's international plan. Posting to Facebook, shopping for Black Friday, this plan held up and did good. The only moment of irritation was when we visited St. John and found that we were on U.S. roaming data, which ironically was only 50MB of data! But once back in British waters, we were once again in happy land. Highly highly recommended. T-mobile deserves to continue to eat market share from the other carriers.
The following piece of equipment was disappointing:
  • RAVPower 10400mAh: Don't get me wrong. Having an external battery was very useful. But this particular one charged very slowly and frequently left me without power. I would have appreciated a faster charging one like the one Arturo got. The slow charging didn't bother me at home, but bothered me a lot on the trip.

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