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GadgetSpeak Articles

GadgetSpeak has close to 3,000 product reviews and other articles. You can use this page to find others opinions on anything from mobile phones to computers to the latest kitchen appliance

 
590291 lg ht32s dvd 2.1 audio video home cinem

LG HT32S Home Cinema System

Although billed as a home cinema system this cool looking product from LG offers a range of multimedia functions.
The HT32S comprises a main system box, a large bass sub-woofer and two satellite tweeters. The main speaker measures a substantial 216x405x310mm (WxHxD) and weights a hefty 5.9Kg. The satelite speakers measure 118x230x115mm and weight 1.1Kg each. Power output is 150W from the subwoofer and 75W from each of the satellites. The design is very sleek with a curved main unit and side speakers. Accompanying the system is a comprehensive remote control.
Another in an ever increasing range of Netbooks from Asus, this one (sorry not shaped like a seashell or made from shell although they do make a different unit from Bamboo) promises 8.5hours of battery life between charges.
The latest EeePC from Asus, the 1005HA measures 26x18x3.5cm the latter is maximum at the rear feet it is 1cm less at the front feet. It weights 1290grams. Mine was black but I see they also do white. This was not sent directly to me from Asus and so some of the settings may have been unfavourably tweaked by the previous reviewer. In heavy use including attached USB devices I got four hours. In lighter use without external devices draining power it was just over six hours.
Brace yourself – ready or not – Christmas is not that far away. Here two items for the kids and no doubt the best way to cope is a little at a time. First a tradition Jigsaw from Ravensburger and second a new twist on the Rubik’s Cube.
This is apparently the twelfth limited edition puzzle produced by Ravensburger. I cannot talk about any of the first eleven as I have not seen them. This is a delightful puzzle of 1000 pieces and for me anyway quite difficult because of the amount of snow. It is created from an original watercolour painting by Roy Trower who studied graphic art at Norwich and graduated in 1984. It is one of Ravensburgers Premium Puzzles featuring their softclick technology.
Fed up with earphones that under perform? Want to reclaim your music? s-Jays earphones offer amazing quality and performance for a wide variety of uses.
s-Jays earphones featuring SIREN technology £45.24 at I have odd ears. I don’t know if it’s because I am a girl but earphones are not made for me.  Either they are too big, they slip out or they just make my ears hurt. Some are good for dance music but are hopeless on speech tracks such as my audio yoga.  Too many to mention just DON’T DO Classical or movies particularly well.  Call me picky but I am not really into big headphones either.
588812 sony ericsson w302 mobile phone handse

Sony Ericsson W302

Aimed more at the budget end of the market, the Sony Ericsson W302 handset is both lightweight and small in size.
My recent mobile phone companion has been a review sample of the Sony Ericsson W302 handset.  Aimed more towards the budget end of the market, this mobile phone is of the candy bar variety.  Decked out in midnight black (I believe there is also a white model) with silver embellishments, this handset has a rather unassuming presence due mainly to its small size.  The phone measures 100 x 46 x 10.5mm (H x W x D) and weighs in at a fairly lightweight 78g.
As not every Office suite contain a DTP application, many computer users struggle to produce business cards, posters, invitations and a whole range of other publications using a word processor. Serif’s PagePlus X4 brings professional quality DTP within the reach of many small companies, clubs and even individuals.
DTP packages have often been seen as both too expensive and too complex for the average user. PPX4 is a versatile and powerful program and it appears that Serif recognises the fact that many people need to produce professional results as an adjunct to their normal work and not necessarily as a main stream activity. Consequently, the company has put a lot of effort into making it user-friendly.
First a wireless device great for the energetic that enables them to hear music or phone calls while indulging in exercise. Second a small speaker to enable your iPod, MP3 player or phones content to be heard by all.
Not just another wireless device. This is a set of earbuds with connections behind the ears linked by a wire behind the head. You then place your wireless device phone or whatever away in a pocket and no matter how vigoursly you jog or run the earbuds stay in your ears so no danger of losing your headset as the wire behind your neck holds the earbuds in place. All the controls are on the earpieces so it might be as well to study the manual before you depart so you what to press to control what.
One for the fashion conscious - a smart way to carry your gadgets around with Urban Bagz
Being the lady journalist on the Gadgetspeak team, I just love to get the girly stuff to review and was happy this week to receive a few samples from Urban Bagz. Urban Bagz are supplied by Belgium company Orkio at . Urban Bagz have designed a wide range of carriers for laptops, mobile phones, digital cameras and MP3 players. They're very stylish and practical at the same time. The fabrics are lightweight, yet durable and wipe clean.
Sometimes meeting up with an old friend after a long period of absence can result in a feeling of disappointment. Sad to say this was one of those occasions.
Back in the last century (alright it was less than a decade ago), most personal computers were run on a DOS (Disk Operating System) platform.  Even Windows was underpinned by DOS until very recently.  Numerous programs were developed to help users deal with problems that could arise through the interaction between DOS, installed applications and hardware issues.
Why wait for a crime to be committed before solving it? This Minority Report-like approach is the basis of a game in the Mystery Case Files series.
589938 cyberlink youcam 3 web cam effect

CyberLink YouCam 3

There are a lot of web cams around and somewhat surprisingly few applications to let you make the most of them. Of course to take an image or a video you need little, however should you want to pep up the content then you need something extra such as CyberLink YouCam 3.
Increasingly applications come as downloads as this one did. The problem I find with that is that there is of course no box and no CD so burn one yourself (this download was just over 100MB) and do remember to include not only the downloaded files but also a text file with the all important serial number so if the worst happens and you need to reinstall the product at any time, you can.
Jabra have made their name making quality Bluetooth headsets for the mobile phone market. That market has moved on and so has Jabra, here with their latest Jabra Halo stereo headset.
Very few mobile phones are in fact simply mobile phones these days. Technological progress has lead to that phone in your pocket shrinking in size while vastly expanding functionality. High on the list of roles is that of media player - both for audio and more recently for video. The traditional Bluetooth headset, while suitable for making a phone call, is obviously not up to the task of stereo playback of your favourite music.
588810 xara web designe

Website Design

Combining its undoubted expertise in the area of graphics applications and experience as a company entrenched in the on-line community, Xara has developed a Web authoring tool appropriately entitled Xara Web Designer
I always enjoy reviewing a Blu-ray player, one because I do not own one but do have several Blu-ray discs including several that will not play in a PC with a Blu-ray player, even experts do not know why and two its an excuse to watch Blu-ray movies.
Half way through the review period I got a new TV in for review from Sony (review in a couple of weeks) so this has been tested not only with my 32inch TV but a brand new 40inch Bravia as well. In a short space of time The Blu-ray player has developed a lot and indeed I hear that stand alone recorders are soon to hit the shops. There are of course a number of stand alone Blu-ray player/recorders available for the PC but they need a powerful PC to run them.
Two further items from those clever USB people in Hong Kong. First a LED torch that gives a good bright light and it has another big plus. Second for those without a built in web cam. A Minocam that works with a PC or Notebook and as you should expect from Brando it is also something else.
The invitation gave little away other than this was to be a new commercial launch. My interest was further aroused when the location and timing was changed just prior to the event.
Arriving, at the Central London location, notebook (the paper variety) and pen in hand, I quickly discovered that this commercial launch involved not one but two companies and the new kid on the block in the mobile phone platform arena.  Bringing together the combined development and marketing talents of T-Mobile and Huawei with the Android platform is the Pulse.
589027 lg gd900 transparent mobile touch phon

LG-GD900 Transparent Mobile Phone

Yes the bottom part (pull out) section is transparent and without the light around the touchpad you would probably be guessing where the numbers are so you can dial. However this phone from LG will no doubt be a hit with the stylish.
The LG GD900 touch screen mobile phone measures 10.5x5.5x1.5cm when shut and the first figure increases by 3cm when the numeric pad is open. It weights 126grams and has a very solid feel. I know I am one of only a small percentage of people who regularly turn a phone off but for the others of my persuasion its 20 seconds to the default front screen and around 50 seconds to being able to make a phone call. To switch off from pressing the button is around 8 seconds.
588806 terratec grabby vhs analogue tape digitise

Terratec Grabby

Maybe, like me, when you were a young child you were told not to be grabby when treats came around. Now Terratec wants you to ignore this advice as you use the company’s product to convert your analogue VHS tapes into digital content stored on your hard disk or optical media. Appropriately enough this product is entitled Grabby.
Working in conjunction with Magix’s Movies on DVD software, the Terratec Grabby is a USB style flash stick device.  The flash stick element measures 96 x 32 x 12mm.  LED lights for power and recording feedback are provided along with a button to activate a quick record feature.  Permanently attached to one end are leads for connecting to the audio left / right channels and Video In of your VHS player.
Developed by the German-based Blue Byte Company and now available from Focus Multimedia is The Settlers: Rise of an Empire. This is the sixth title in the Settlers series and consists of city-building features with resource management and strategic combat encased within a well-drawn, animated interface set in the medieval era.
I have reviewed many DAB/FM units and a few DAB/FM/CD but so far none from Sony. As you would expect it is a quality unit and as you should also expect it is by no means cheap, but then quality never is.
A unit over 3kilos in weight being called portable is perhaps unusual but it can be run of batteries (that weight does not include the six ‘C’ cell required) for this. However my main reason for this statement is the carry handle that goes along above the top of it. Below the handle is on the top is the slot loader CD with eject button on its right side and in front of this a circular silvered volume control and on the left of the CD a silvered push button for on/off.
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