Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Make Philips SHB8750NC Comfortable

These Philips Bluetooth Noise Cancelling headphones are on clearance in Walmart stores for $10-30.  They sound good without exaggerated bass. There is only one issue though: too tight (too much clamping force). We can easily address this issue with nothing but some water.

You can find these headphones with this link (SKU 54383955).

If you want more NC and/or over-the-ear type, then consider the Philips SHB9850NC.

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

FireFox and save passwords, always

First thing first is to install the addon of Saved Password Editor, then most of the web sites will allow you to save passwords, automatically or manually:

But some web developers figured out a trick to confuse FireFox by adding fake "user" and/or "password" input fields around the real one(s). Such fake input fields can be revealed by Inspect Element, like these four fake inputs below the real one:

These four fake input fields must be removed for password-save to work. We need to install Greasemonkey, then add the following user script:

// ==UserScript==
// @name        Enable Password Saving
// @include     https://the_web_site
// @grant       GM_getValue
// ==/UserScript==

var oldInput = document.querySelector ("input[value=no-ff-pwmgr-1]");
oldInput = document.querySelector ("input[value=no-ff-pwmgr-2]");
oldInput = document.querySelector ("input[value=no-ff-pwmgr-3]");
oldInput = document.querySelector ("input[value=no-ff-pwmgr-4]");

Now refresh the page, the four fake input fields are removed:

Log in again and FireFox will prompt us to save the password.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Amazon Fire TV low storage fix

Since last week or so, my 1st gen AFTV always pop up a message for low storage. Turned out it was the Amazon launcher cache that took up all the storage.

Here is a dirty and easy fix, root required:

adb connect (change it to your IP)
adb shell
cd /data/data/com.amazon.tv.launcher/databases
rm mbcache.db*
touch mbcache.db
touch mbcache.db-shm
touch mbcache.db-wal
chmod 0 mbcache.db*

Now, ls -all and it should look like this:

Sunday, January 8, 2017

Tweaks of Philips SHB9850NC Headphones

After trying lots of noise cancelling (NC) headphones, Philips SHB9850NC stands out as the satisfactory pair - comfortable, effective NC and good sound for less than $200 (got mine for $82 during the holidays).

However, ever since I put them on, I felt too much bass. I took off the ear cups to see what I can do about that:

The first thing I noticed: the large oval foam rings are off their supposed tracks. I tear carefully them up and put them back on the tracks. This correction should give better seals which is important for noise isolation.

I then removed the two white round tapes to reveal the two small holes. These two holes release resonance and thus reduce booming bass. Now they sound like monitor type headphones without excessive bass. If you want a little more bass after fully opening the holes, then you may try to block partially the holes, or use a mask tape with a tiny hole. The larger the hole, the less bass and less efficiency of NC. I used a 1/32" - 3/64" drill bit.

Or insert a tiny piece of foam into the hole to reduce bass but without letting treble out to degrade NC and sound quality:

I like this foam tweak the most - very clean and sweet sound.

Also insert a little bit of foam into the two Mic holes to avoid wind noise while running or riding a bike etc.:

One more tweak you must do is to insert some foam into the ear cups. Not only far more comfortable, better sound stage too!

You can have lots of fun with these tiny holes and some foam!

The clapping force is still too much, not comfortable after an hour or two; so I bend the headband like this:

Don't worry, you cannot break it because the headband is made of steal (but grab and bend the top part only, or you may break the two plastic seats that connect the top and lower segments):

Now this Philips is perfect, except just one thing - the stupid touch panel. To let the touch to work is like to win the Lottery.

Some notes on NC headphones

I tried more than 10 pairs of NC headphones and earbuds. The top Audio-Technica (priced at $200) have four microphones like this Philips for effective NC, but the speakers in them are bad sounding. They sound very poor when NC is turned off; Bose is the same. The Sennheiser PXC 550 is the only perfect NC headphones, but they cost $400, insane. For only $82 during this Black Friday, this Philips is currently the only choice if you don't want to pay a leg or arm for a good pair of NC headphones.

Wednesday, January 4, 2017



首先,“补”是补充的意思,而不是中国人说的十全大补的那个意思,英文是“dietary supplements“。所以关于补品的第一点就是真的缺了才需要补,如果不缺,或者补的太多,反而会出问题甚至中毒、致癌的。简单说,这些东西是不能随便吃的。














PS:  《消费者报告》(ConsumerReports)9月刊花了14页的大量篇幅全面指导补品的安全性,有兴趣的可以去你的图书馆找来读读。我还没见过这么长的CR文章,可见现在这个问题的严重程度。文中说: 仅仅是2008到2011,美国食品及药品管理局共收到6307起投诉,包括92例死亡,数百危机生命,严重受伤和患病的上千。由于很多都没有记录在案,实际数目要远高于这些。文章最后说: 健康无捷径可走,试试锻炼和食物。比如,如果你觉得自己缺维生素C,那么就吃一个橘子;如果缺维A,吃一个小小的胡萝卜就足够了。