Despite being a firm believer in the "If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it" mantra, I was recently tempted to carry out an upgrade.
While it might seem illogical, I have always regarded my notebook as a totally different beast from my workhorse desktop machine even though both systems use the same operating system. I should explain that the difference I am referring to relates to adding certain hardware enhancements to the computer’s make-up.
A colour laser printer with an RRP of less than £200 surely is worthy of further investigation. The size is not that large something that earlier printers could not say and it prints quite quickly without colour pages printing at ¼ speed.
The Canon i-SENSYS LBP 5050n is 38x4325cm and as printed pages are delivered face down on the top of the unit no extra space is required. It weights around 18kilos so should be easily moveable if required. When I removed it from the box I noticed there is a cardboard sling that makes removing it easy.
Not one item but two, first a battery powered screwdriver from Black and Decker and second a nice powerful USB torch from Brando in Hong Kong and as you would expect it does have another function, read on to find out what.
When the choice of colours is Lava Black, Jungle Grey, Cosmopolitan White or Active Blue, then you should have a fairly good idea that the subject mater will be a Sony Ericsson mobile phone.
In this case the phone belongs to the Walkman series and bears the W595 designation. The combination of the Active blue colouring with silver trimmings and slopping curves at the top and bottom of the unit give this handset a stylish appearance.
Apart from a very heavy Dell (purchased second hand) my first 17inch monitor was the then new Flatron brand. It still – touch wood – works on my Windows ME system that still performs, this is of course smaller lighter and has a much larger display area.
This LG Flatron W2261V-PF 22inch Flat Panel measures 39x52x18cm when vertical sitting on the oval stand. The screen surround is 52x30cm with the display area 47x27cm giving the notional 21.5inch diagonal measurement. This is a 1080P widescreen unit capable of displaying 1920x1080 but perhaps more important when used with a notebook it can display far lesser resolutions well without the text or images looking strange.
You could say that I am one in a billion. Well not exactly me but rather the subject of this next review.
Logitech has recently announced that it has shipped its billionth mouse which presumably calls for some sort of celebration but as yet I have no information regarding what this might be. The count of one billion includes the V550 Nano model which is currently taking up residence on my workspace in its role as the pointing device for my notebook. Like the previous mouse in the Logitech Nano series, the V550 model is a cordless laser device that links to your computer via advanced 2.
This is one of two small HD camcorders (mobile phone size) that I am looking at. So as part of my reviews I take some clips at local gigs and then send links to the clips to the musicians, whom I ask which is better and why.
I have previously reviewed a couple of the ‘Flip’ models who both took images at lesser resolution. This is the first pocket camcorder I have reviewed that takes movies in HD. It is 10.5x5.5x2cm and it weights 135grams. It is marketed with a You Tube logo on the face and indeed should you want to share videos with the world then this would work however if your efforts are for friends and family there is another way via Vimeo.
From the printed page to the computer screen comes a murder mystery from the fertile imagination of a best selling author.
I have to admit that I have never read a book from the pen of the best selling author, James Patterson. This gap in my literally education means that I am unable to confirm whether the storyline used in the James Patterson Women’s Murder Club: Death in Scarlet game, released by the GSP arm of Avanquest Software Publishing, stays true to the original book offering.
While hardly the sexiest of products, database software does have an important task to fulfil especially when it is available in cross-platform format.
A long established application on my desktop, dating back to the days of Windows 95 and before, is FileMaker. This product, available for both the Windows and Mac platforms, has provided all my database needs on both my desktop system and handheld devices. Sad to say, the Mobile version of the product has been discontinued (shame on you FileMaker) but the latest version of the desktop product, FileMaker Pro 10, is now with us.
If it isn’t broke don’t mend it does not seem to apply to the highly successful range of Ixus cameras. I have reviewed several and numerous things are in different places in fact it looks quiet different to earlier models.
I suppose change had to happen as the wide screen mode alters the form factor it is still small and powerful but the shape has changed. It is 9.5x5x1.5 when the lens is fully extended this adds 2cm to the last figure. The weight is 160 grams. Mine had a powder blue face but they are available in a range of colours. The right side has a door covering the HDMI and A/V out sockets as well as a very trendy looking wrist strap anchor point.
This product concentrates on the Driving Theory Test. It is a product that runs on the Nintendo DS Lite. Some readers may know that many years ago – before the theory test – I used to be a driving instructor. Then of course all this was the ‘Highway Code’ section after the practical test.
As with most Nintendo DS products you get a 13x12x2cm case with in this case the module that fits in your DS Lite and some documentation. This includes a sixteen page manual and a proof of purchase leaflet that entitles you to your first driving lesson free via Insert the 2.5x2cm module and switch your DS Lite on.
While listening to commercially created music is a popular pastime, have you thought about creating your own compositions?
MAGIX has a long association with different aspects of audio. The company has developed software products for cleaning up audio tracks and adding special effects; organising the management and computerised selection of themed tracks; plus the transfer and conversion of content on vinyl and tape sources into digital audio that can be burned on optical media.
Here I am looking at a high end set of earbuds where an impression of your ear is taken to get an exact fit. The second is a rather natty set of headphones that work rather well even when out and about.
These are rather good earbuds and are sold for ‘Apple’ people mainly. We are talking musician’s type earbuds and indeed this company make special noise reducing ones for musicians. They are very light at less than 40 grams and come with a standard 3.5mm jack and a 1.2metre lead. There are three types of eartips in the box, two different sizes of three shields and a set of the foam ones.
Just the thought of the difficulties that could ensue following a hard disk failure should be enough incentive to encourage users to consider taking precautions and follow the Boy Scout motto of “Be Prepared”.
There are several offerings available to help keep disaster at bay and one of them is Hard Disk Manager 2009. Describing itself as an “All-In-One Suite to completely protect, maintain and manage your PC”, Paragon’s Hard Disk Manager 2009 is a suite of tools aimed at avoiding hard disk problems and solving those problems that might occur as the result of normal wear and tear through everyday usage.
Mixing together match-3 action, strategy and a storyline that involves dragons, magic crystals and user-selected wallpaper offerings, a new game published by Alawar has been taking over my game-playing time.
This is a touch screen phone (no keyboard) but for those whose handwriting is better than mine almost everything can be written using the provided stylus, however there is a soft keypad for people like me.
The KP500 mobile phone from LG, also referred to as 'Cookie' measures 10.5x5.5x1cm and weights less than 90grams. Mine was black with a metallic grey strip around the edge. The face has a 6.5x4cm screen. The 140 page User Guide is very comprehensive. The face of the unit has three buttons below the screen. The right side has the insertion point for the 5cm long stylus that expands to 7.5cm for easier writing this unusually for a stylus goes horizontally along the base of the unit.
Although Verbatim is best known for its data storage products, there are many other products in its portfolio including portable loudspeakers. These include units suitable for MP3 players as well as notebook computers. Among the recently launched units are the 2.1 Multi Media Speaker System and the USB Speaker System.
The former, as well as being mains powered, can be run from batteries. Hence, it is ideal for the person who needs more powerful sound, both at home and on the move, than the PC or MP3 player is able to provide. Consisting of a single base unit 9 x 7cm together with pair of units, roughly 10 by 5 cm, each of which incorporate 2 speakers. Four AAA cells fit in the base unit which also has the controls. These are volume up/down and power buttons together with a LED indicating when power is on.
Old technology can still have a purpose if only to provide new technology with which it can work.
According to certain members of my family, there is more than a touch of packrat in my make up. This is a charge I deny although I do admit to a reluctance to dispose of some items. Experience has taught me that whenever I get rid of something, it is not long before a need arises for that particular item. As I result I still posses several pieces of equipment and media that are no longer regarded as state-of-the-art.
Having recently reviewed a number of small and light notebooks this is somewhat of a culture shock. In fact a doubt anyone without personal transport would ever think of it as a notebook more of a desktop replacement.
First a device that allows you to charge up to five USB devices from a single 13amp socket. Second two ‘AA’ and two ‘AAA’ rechargeable batteries from Vatra, they come with a Free dual recharger unit.
It has 6.5x7x3.5cm visible when plugged into a 13amp socket. The front shows 4 USB slots, however remove the outer sleeve and a micro USB is reviewed on the end of 65cm of cable that is wound round the body and clips into a storage bay. So now a single 13amp socket is capable of charging five USB devices simultaneously. The load can be up to 3000mA distributed among the four female ports and the mini B connector.