The Week in Review is a collection of both all the goodness I’ve written during the past week around the internet, as well as a small pile of links I found interesting – generally endurance sports related. I’ve often wondered what to do with all of the coolness that people write, and while I share a lot of it on Twitter and Facebook, this is a better forum for sending it on to y’all. Most times these different streams don’t overlap, so be on the lookout at all these places for good stuff!
So with that, let’s get into the action!
DCRAINMAKER.com Posts in the Past Week:
Here’s all the goodness that ended up on the main page of DCRainmaker.com this past week:
⚡ I like the PowerBeats Pro with the over-the-ear design, for more security in workouts, than my Beats Studio Buds. I use these as well as my Beats Studio Buds (and have used the PowerBeats Pro ones longer). $100 off is a solid deal.
⚡I've been using these since last summer (2021), primarily on my indoor workouts, but also on some of my runs (for example, in testing out most watches with music). I like them and they've become my go-to buds.
⚡This is the first time we've seen this on sale - and so it's actually pretty notable. I don't even think it's supposed to be on sale, but this is just Amazon doing Amazon. This is one of the two main HR straps i use these days (alongside the Polar H10). Either way, definitely take this and run!
⚡This is the first time we've seen the Garmin Instinct 2 series devices (all variants) on sale. The Instinct 2 base is from $249 (on Amazon), a very solid deal - especially with all the major software updates it's had over the last year.
⚡So this has been fluctuating all day between $54 and $75. So it's a bit of luck of the draw. Either way- these are super low prices and great straps. This is one of my main chest straps I use as a reference device in testing. Works great!
This is Garmin's standalone radar/taillight option, and $149 is pretty much the standard sale-price. This product is universally loved, and works with Garmin/Wahoo/Stages/Hammerhead/Bryton, and other bike computers.
⚡This is the slightly older ROAM V1, which isn't quite as fancy as the new V2. Still, $200 off is a very solid deal, and it, recently got the new Wahoo Summit Segments feature, as well as other features - so it's still getting the majority (if not all) new firmware features.
⚡This deal is on DJI's larger FPV drone, the original one. They've also got the smaller but less powerful one too - Avata, which isn't on sale. This is for the FPV combo deal, saving you $400. This includes the drone, FPV goggles, and controller.
This is the second time we've seen the DJI Mavic 3 on sale (for a non-bundled deal). With all the firmware improvements since the fall, it's finally getting to a more stable place in terms of features. Of course, you can also now get the DJI Mavic 3 Classic for a fair bit cheaper, minus the zoom lens. Albeit, I personally think the zoom lens is handy (if used correctly).
⚡ Amazon now has the Hero 11 Black for $100 off the retail price of $499. This does *NOT* require the GoPro subscription (previously called GoPro Plus). The Hero 11 has become my daily action cam (well, actually, I bought two of them).
There hasn’t been a ‘Week in Review’ in a few weeks, and this wasn’t posted elsewhere, so the below might be interesting to folks. At the very least, it was a blast for us. Note that yes, the audio sucks for the first 8 minutes, then we hit a magic button and it’s all good!
Oh – and if you found that interesting, Shane/Des/I did a three-part series that is definitely worthwhile watching:
We had a blast on those, and that’s like hours worth of super geeky sports tech content. Though, the last one is more about how we create content and some of the behind the scenes bits that each of us dive through.
Stuff that I found interesting around the interwebs:
Here’s a not-so-small smattering of all the random things that I stumbled on while doing my civic duty to find the end of the Internet.
1) New Giant Bike CycloSmart Trainer: Looks like a new direct drive trainer from Giant. The details are just sliding out, but looks like it could be interesting – depending on the pricing (which is TBA as far as I know). The only bit that concerns me is usage of a metal chain internally, which means some sort of maintenance. To me that’s kinda like SRM requiring a bunch of funky tools for their EXAKT pedals (meaning, it’s not relevant in 2018/2019). However, if it’s priced right and accurate, then it can make up for those ‘concerns’.
2) Founder of CompuTrainer passes away: There’s no denying that CompuTrainer was a pioneer in the indoor training space, and Chuck was one of the nicest guys out there. While I (or you) may not have agreed with their business execution, he was always friendly and happy to chat when I saw him. The first ‘real’ indoor trainer I bought was a CompuTrainer, and then I eventually bought another one later on with The Girl for her.
3) Why I don’t see Wear OS succeeding in fitness: This article, while all about a 3rd party app (Dark Sky), does a great job at explaining the issues these days with Wear OS. It’s just not focusing on things that fitness companies leverage and care about (mainly, battery life). I think for the Fossil’s of the world it continues to be a great option, but there’s just not enough for fitness/sport companies that want really solid battery life.
4) Zwift secures $120 million in expansion funding: This funding is aimed at eSports expansion specifically – and Zwift themselves has been on a blitz of announcements related to that in the last few weeks. While I think eSports is great, I’m less convinced Zwift is putting in place the framework required to police these events and make them meaningful from a controls standpoint (read: cheating). After all, if you’re getting a national jersey (as Australia will be giving next month), then you should be assured there’s policies and technical enforcements in place to eliminate easy cheating. I’ve got a piece planned soon about this, so stay tuned there.
5) GoPro CEO podcast interview about company/products: Always interesting to hear CEO’s speak. I’m still not convinced GoPro is positioned to win longer term here, especially with DJI’s recent entrance into the sorta-action cam market (with the OSMO Pocket). While the Hero 7 is awesome (and certainly better than the OSMO Pocket in many ways), DJI’s software capabilities seem to quickly ramp past GoPro (such as active tracking within the camera on the Pocket).
6) Killer whales next to openwater swimmer: In case you didn’t see this – it’s just incredibly amazing. Also, that women…damn….I’d have been out of there faster than you can fart. Click onto full story for quotes from woman.
Sports Technology Software/Firmware Updates This Week:
Each week I quickly highlight some of the new firmware, app, software and website service updates that I see go out. If you’re a sports technology company and release an update – shoot me a quick note (just one-liners are perfect, or Tweet it at me is even better) and I’ll make mention of it here. If I don’t know about it, I won’t be able to post about it. Sound good? Oh – and if you want to get a head start on things, this page is a great resource for watching Garmin and a few other firmware updates.
You probably stumbled upon here looking for a review of a sports gadget. If you’re trying to decide which unit to buy – check out my in-depth reviews section. Some reviews are over 60 pages long when printed out, with hundreds of photos! I aim to leave no stone unturned.
I travel a fair bit, both for work and for fun. Here’s a bunch of random trip reports and daily trip-logs that I’ve put together and posted. I’ve sorted it all by world geography, in an attempt to make it easy to figure out where I’ve been.
The most common question I receive outside of the “what’s the best GPS watch for me” variant, are photography-esq based. So in efforts to combat the amount of emails I need to sort through on a daily basis, I’ve complied this “My Photography Gear” post for your curious minds! It’s a nice break from the day to day sports-tech talk, and I hope you get something out of it!
Many readers stumble into my website in search of information on the latest and greatest sports tech products. But at the end of the day, you might just be wondering “What does Ray use when not testing new products?”. So here is the most up to date list of products I like and fit the bill for me and my training needs best! DC Rainmaker 2021 swim, bike, run, and general gear list. But wait, are you a female and feel like these things might not apply to you? If that’s the case (but certainly not saying my choices aren’t good for women), and you just want to see a different gear junkies “picks”, check out The Girl’s Gear Guide too.