Griffin Review: The Guide Cable Management Set Will Keep Your Desk Organized

Griffin’s Guide Magnetic Cable Management Set was first announced at CES in January of 2015, but it didn’t become available for purchase until September. We went hands-on with the Guide to see if it was worth the wait as a cable management solution.

The Guide Cable Management Set is modular and consists of three weighted bases and three magnetic aluminum cable anchors that attach to the bases. Each base is made from a polished stainless steel with a shiny finish while the anchors, available in three sizes from small to large, are made from an anodized copper-colored aluminum.

Together, the Guide system looks great on a desk, but it is only available in the polished steel and copper colorway, which doesn’t match any iOS devices and while neutral, may not match all office and room decors. I liked the design of the Guide, but I did wish it was available in a wider selection of colors.

Each of the three bases is the same size, measuring in at 2.28 x 1.98 inches, but the magnetic cable anchors come in a range of sizes to fit different cords. The smallest of the three anchors is sized to fit a single iPhone cable, while the middle one can hold several iPhone-sized cables or a couple of larger cables, and the biggest anchor can hold thicker cables like those for cameras and other electronics. The weight of the Guide bases will keep them in place, but there’s also a non-skid material on the bottom to provide even more traction.

Because the anchors attach to each base using magnets, they can be arranged in multiple ways. One anchor can be used per base or multiple anchors can fit on a single base to meet various cable management needs. For my work space, I used the smaller one to hold an iPhone cable that has a pesky habit of slipping off the edge of the desk, while I used the other two to hold my MacBook cable and cables for other devices in place.

Due to their weight, the Guide bases can’t realistically be mounted on walls or on the sides of desks and tables (and the Guide doesn’t come with the necessary hardware) so these are going to be limited to on-the-desk organization. For that use case, the Guide is primarily going to keep your cables where you want them to be so they’re not sliding all over the desk or slipping off. The Guide isn’t going to hide or conceal cables and cords, but it will keep them looking more organized and streamlined.

The large base size means the Guide takes up more room on a desk than simpler cable routing options, but sacrificing the extra space felt worth it to me both for the versatility of being able to rearrange the pieces at will and for the premium aesthetic. If you have multiple cables in different areas, such as on a desk and on a nightstand, the Guide can also be split up across multiple rooms. After some experimentation, I found the Guide to be more useful for me when split up, because a single larger cable anchor can hold multiple cables in place, letting me address several problem areas.

Given the usefulness of the Guide’s interchangeable pieces, I’m surprised there aren’t more magnetic cable management systems on the market. Before the Guide, I hadn’t considered magnets as cable organizing solution, but it seems like an ideal way to wrangle cables.

Bottom Line

The magnetic Guide system is a clever way to organize cables on a desk, and because it can be used in so many ways, it’s suitable for a range of cable configurations and setups. Since it’s magnetic, it’s easy to arrange and rearrange cables and the Guide system as necessary, and its industrial look blends in with a lot of decors.

If you’ve got pesky cables that are continually slipping off of your desk or getting tangled and knocked out of place, the Guide is going to keep them where they belong with no problem.

The only real negative with the Guide is the price. At $40, this is a somewhat expensive solution to manage a handful of cables, and I do wish it was either more reasonably priced or had more pieces. If you don’t mind shelling out $40 in the name of desktop organization, the Guide is worth picking up.

How to Buy

Griffin’s Guide cable organizers can be purchased from the Griffin website for $39.99 or from Amazon.com for the same price.

Tags: review, Griffin, Griffin Guide
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Lust List: Sit-Stand Desktop Workstation by Ergotron I’ve got a love/hate relationship with standing desks. While I love the health benefits of standing, I seriously cannot stand at my desk all day every day. It needs to be easily adjustable. Also, not all of us have the space for yet another desk in our homes […]

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Bing’s redesigned iPhone app focuses on instant answers

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Apple’s Top Free Charts Incorrectly Ranking Apple Apps on Some iOS Devices

Apple’s Top Free Charts on some iOS devices appear to be incorrectly ranking Apple apps like iMovie, Pages, Keynote, and Numbers. As discovered by Sensor Tower and shared by TechCrunch, on some iOS devices, the App Store’s Top Free Chart lists Pages, Numbers, and Keynote at higher ranks than on the desktop App Store and on other iOS devices.

For example, on an iPad mini 2 and an iPhone 5s, we found iMovie, Keynote, Pages, and Numbers all listed within the top 10 free apps, all at different positions. On an iPhone 6 Plus, iPhone 6s Plus, iPad Air 2, and iPad Pro, the only Apple app in the top 20 free apps is iTunes U, which also matches up with the desktop version of the App Store. iTunes U, according to Sensor Tower’s data, is the only app along with GarageBand that should be listed in the top 10 of the free chart.

App Store Top Free Charts on iPad mini

While MacRumors did not see the errant chart behavior on more recent devices, both TechCrunch and Sensor Tower have seen problematic ranking numbers on a range of different devices running iOS 9.1. Devices running iOS 8.3 did not seem to be affected by the problem.

App Store Top Free Charts on iPhone 6s Plus

As TechCrunch points out, it’s not clear if the discrepancy between App Store Top Chart listings is a bug or an intentional manipulation by Apple, but given the significantly different results from device to device, even those that are the same generation, it seems more like a bug than something done deliberately.

The discrepancy, of course, could be related to a bug in Apple’s App Store ranking algorithm, but it’s a persistent one if that’s the case.

It doesn’t appear to be impacting the relative rankings of most other Top applications, besides Apple’s. That is, Facebook Messenger is still at the top of the App Store, followed by newcomer Acapella from PicPlayPost, then YouTube, and then Facebook.

Apps like Pages, Keynote, Numbers, and iMovie are listed in the Top Free Charts because they are provided to iOS users at no cost with the purchase of an iOS device, but these apps are not free, an issue that could potentially be causing chart problems. All of the above listed apps sell for $4.99 to $9.99.

Apple has, however, manipulated the App Store results in the past to highlight its own apps, so it could be the result of a direct work to promote its line of iWork apps to specific devices or specific users, but without comment from Apple, it’s difficult to tell.
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