Technology Peripherals (recommendations, rants, and questions)

I thought it would be a good idea to have maybe a general thread for the peripherals we use for our tablet pcs, and other things. Mainly for recommendations or questions people may have. We have a “What Tablet PC Should I Buy?” section, but we don’t really have a “What monitor, dock, keyboard, mouse, etc, should I buy?” section.

For instance, I recently was given a work laptop and will be losing my VDI access at some point in the near future, which means I will have to use the work laptop, and can’t use my Macbook Pro anymore. But, I still use my Macbook Pro for personal use, so I need a KVM switch. I don’t know much about KVM switches though. Are there specific ones I need for my MBP to support dual monitors? And if I want to spend $50 or less, can I even get a good one with that support?

1 Like

I used to have a label printer, think it was made by Seiko. Believe it connected through a serial port. Very convenient in the days before e-mail, but then came USB ports and the serial port disappeared and so did the label printer (probably when moving). Sometimes I long for that peripheral. There are times when you still send snail mail (mainly to the authorities) and would love to just hit that Print button.

5 Likes

I actually mail things at least a few times a year and print off the label and just end up folding it and taping it to the packages I send. I think if I shipped more than I do, I would definitely be looking for a new label printer.

Also, but seriously, @Desertlap, you’re probably the best to have a recommendation for this one, but do you have any recommendations for a KVM switch for my Macbook and PC? I mainly want something that supports dual monitors with the caveat that one of those monitors will likely be a pen display like a Huion or XP pen because Wacom is pointlessly expensive compared to the amount of money my art makes me.

2 Likes

The pen requirement sadly pretty much disqualifies anything I’ve seen on the market due to IMHO anyway too high of a latency.

As straight KVM we have had good luck with the ugreen ones though the build quality feels a bit on the cheap side.

We’ve heard that OWC whose TB docks consistently test as among the best is developing a couple of these types of switches, but I don’t have a ETA as to if/when they will release them.

1 Like

Well bummer. But thank you for the answer. I’ll probably just get a ugreen and keep plugging away with just my IPP for all my art needs for now then.

1 Like

Brought me back to the 60s (the years not the age).

I used to invest in expensive rolls of address label stickers from the local box business supply store.

Then, I invested in sheets of blank sticker label that you print info and logos on yourself. They looked great, but the price tag always seemed like a rip off.

Nowadays…, I just print the same label spread on regular paper, (about 30 at a time), and cut them out as needed and stick them down with clear packing tape. It’s easy and the least expensive method so far. I see no reason to change.

-Other than Netparcel.com and similar services, where you set up the shipping on-line, pay via credit card, and print off a label and stick that down. Then just drop off at a convenient pick up retail spot in town. Easy-peesy. Makes all other labels irrelevant.

Though, I still like having my company logo on a package.

Also…

I’ve fine tuned things over the years in terms of basic packaging. Bubble packs and book mailers and various boxes have skyrocketed in price over the last couple of decades as home businesses have become common and owners seen as easy marks for exploitation. (I jokingly include “Big Cardboard” among “Big Pharma”, “Big Government” and the other soul-sucking monoliths of our age.)

These days, I find I just roll books in bubble wrap until they look like small pillows, then wrap that up in half a dozen layers of cheap brown packing paper you can get 100 meters of by the roll. Interestingly, no other packing solution survives the drop test better than pillows of bubble wrap. Best solution by far. -Though bubble wrap is also ghastly expensive, even bought in bulk, but it works out a lot cheaper than boxes or mailers. And basic brown paper is still an under-recognized boon to shipping, so it hasn’t been jacked up in price yet.)

Live and learn.

1 Like

I personally haven’t ventured into KVMs since I opted to use ZeroTier plus RDP as my solution for sharing a screen and keyboard and mouse between my various personal devices while keeping my work system separate from the pool. However, I did find this in my Googling. It does not meet your $50 or less price point but it has been tested per the Reddit user:

https://www.reddit.com/r/Thunderbolt/comments/vh261s/macbook_prowindows_gaming_pc_kvm_switch_usbc_hdmi/id57vjh/

1 Like