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Tech the halls, court reporters!

By Lynette Mueller

It’s that time of year to think about your favorite gadgets for holiday gifting for your family, friends, and even yourself!

Here’s a short curated list of the gadgets I’ve been loving this year:

1. Epson WorkForce ES-200 Scanner

This scanner has been my go-to for the past few months. I’ve been working on a case that has me traveling in the state for depositions. It’s great to be able to scan the docs, upload them sooner rather than later, and send the link to counsel. I’ve been looking like a service provider rockstar!

2. HGM-2 Microphone

This handy little microphone is packed with lots of features and has extreme pickup range and quality in addition to a built-in battery tester. The court reporter who has this mic can be assured they will have a worry-free day of crystal clear audio. The HGM-2 utilizes a high-power battery that lasts 600 hours and allows the microphone to actually track voices up to 75 feet away while filtering out background noise. I use this microphone attached to my Luminex so that I can monitor audio live for those low-talking witnesses and attorneys!

3. Jabra Speak 510 Bluetooth and USB Speakerphone

Covering the calendar can be a challenge sometimes. I’ve recommended this microphone to my clients for those few times a remote court reporter can assist with their deposition. It has a nice clear and crisp sound for all participants. Also, it’s plug and play — so no software needed to download. It carries a more reasonable price than my Jabra 750.

4. Bose QuietComfort Wireless Noise Cancelling Headphones

I’ve had Bose QuietComfort headphones for several years, and they’re still going strong! They are the most comfortable and reliable headphones. The finish on the earpads was starting to come off. Instead of replacing the headphones, I simply purchased new earpad cushions. There are many options available when searching on The cost is less than $20 for the set, and they are easy to install.

5. Drop CTRL mechanical keyboard

I’m still loving this mechanical keyboard that my brother, who works at Google, recommended to me a few years back.

Some of the features: Constructed with a solid aluminum frame with a built-in switch plate, it’s stable and fortified. With dual USB-C connectors, the CTRL is outfitted with the fastest available connections. Aesthetically, the keyboard is equally impressive. Featuring customizable RGB backlighting and underlighting, it puts on a colorful show, or you can set it to a single color for a more subtle look. The shine-through PBT keycaps only enhance the performance. What’s more, the keyboard comes with your choice of switches so you can get just the feel you like — whether you prefer something heavy and tactile or lightweight and linear. 

6. HomePod and HomePod mini

My husband and I early gifted ourselves the HomePod and HomePod minis. We wanted an almost all-over-house experience to listen to our music and control our Christmas trees, outdoor lights, and the morning coffee. Maybe we’re lazy or just love technology or both, but we love to be able to use voice commands to control our devices that are connected. It works seamlessly with all of our Apple devices — awesome!

HomePod comes with Siri built in, so things like setting reminders and sending messages, turning on the lights when you walk through the door, adjusting the temperature, and even DJ-ing your next dinner party are a “Hey Siri,” or now just a simple “Siri” away.

According to their website: “Designed to protect your personal information. Privacy at home is more important than ever. That’s why your data is stored in a way that Apple can’t read.”

We are still learning about this new gadget and looking forward to Christmas vacation and diving deeper into all of its features.

7. Kasa Smart Plug Mini 15A

These smart plugs are what we’re using in conjunction with the HomePod. The uses are almost unlimited. Control anything that requires an electrical outlet.

About this smart plug:

  • Apple HomeKit compatible smart plug fully integrates into your Apple ecosystem; just ask Siri to turn on/off the devices in your home.
  • Use the smart WiFi home plug to monitor your connected device’s energy usage in realtime and view its historical power consumption within the Kasa Smart app.
  • Enjoy an extremely easy and quick setup process with this Amazon Frustration-Free Setup (FFS) & Google Seamless Setup (GSS) supported smart plug. You can also set up in a few steps with the Kasa App.
  • Avoid blocking additional outlets with its compact design and plug in your WiFi smart plug with confidence thanks to its UL-certified flame-retardant design and 2-year limited warranty.

Well, there you have it — my top seven gadgets for 2023. What will you be doing to “tech your halls”? Happy Holidays!

JCR Contributing Editor Lynette Mueller, FAPR, RDR, CRR, is a freelance court reporter based in Memphis, Tenn. She can be reached at

Questions or recommendations on technology can be sent to the Technology Committee through

*By using these and other Amazon links provided in this article, NCRA is eligible to make a small commission to help further our cause.