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

Unlike most Medion kit that is sold through Aldi where if you are not queuing on the day they go on sale before the store opens you don’t get one this tiny notebook is one of two currently being sold by Sainsbury’s both online and in their larger stores.
This is the third Netbook I have reviewed both the others (Acer and Asus) were running Linux this however runs Windows XP Home. It is 25.5x17.5x3.5cm and weights only 1130grams. It is totally black apart from the area surrounding the keyboard that is silver/grey. The screen is 22.5x13cm giving the notional diagonal measurement of 10.2inches. The screen resolution runs in 1024x600 but it has a VGA port and runs a second monitor/panel without problems at a higher resolution should it be required.
Here I am looking at iPod docks from Pure (the DAB radio people) and from Gear 4. Both seem to work with most iPods and of course both will charge the iPod while it sits in place playing or not providing you have mains power. Similar products but aimed for slightly different jobs.
When this arrived it was a shock – as I had not asked for it – but mainly because it was a new departure for Pure. There are certainly the best known name in DAB radio and indeed certain of there units do have docks. Pure EcoPlus is their stab at saving the planet. Reduced power consumption in both operation and standby, materials from sustainable sources and or recycled. Less packaging and components selected to lessen environmental impact. More details at . The dock itself is 7.
As befits technology, its sphere of influence continues to spread through the use of different mediums. While wireless and cable connectivity continues to hold sway, sometimes these methods do not meet the need of users.
When setting up a home network you do need to consider which connectivity method is most appropriate for your particular circumstances.  If the though of laying cables from system to system located in various rooms does not appeal and your environment is not conducive to wireless connectivity or you are worried about security issues then a third alternative might appeal.
570229 hannsg HG221A 22inch widescreen multimedia LCD monito

Hanns-G 22inch HG221A

A 22inch panel from Hanns-G that looks pleasant enough with its silver/grey surround. It has small powered speakers that are probably enough for beeps and notifications but not really enough for music or for conversations via Skype.
It is 51x34x7cm, the latter figure is the maximum width. There is a circular stand (22.5cm) that lifts the panel 6cm from the desk. The screen itself is 47x29.5cm giving the notional 22inch diagonal measurement. Although there is no side to side movement there is good backward and forward movement so providing you are located within about 150 degrees of a central position you should be able to view the screen clearly.
The needs of multimedia and telephony based applications tend to differ with regards to various settings. Sandberg believes it has a possible solution to circumvent this problem.
Recently I have looked at a number of products from Sandberg, a Danish company involved in the development of various computer accessories that are distributed in the UK by Interactive Ideas.  Generally the purpose and functionality of these devices is fairly evident from their title but not always.  For example this next product is a USB device that goes by the name of ChatSet.
Where do toys go when left to their own devices? It is a question that has confounded some of the world’s greatest thinkers but not those who are young at heart.
As any child will tell you, toys have a habit of moving from where ever they were left at the end of play time.  In some cases this movement is as a result of mum doing the tidying up but not always.  Rather than being returned to a central storage area such as a toy box, some toys simple disappear altogether.  One theory is that these missing toys reappear in a mysterious location known as Neverland.
Say the word ‘A3’ and most immediately think too big or too heavy or probably both. Well it will not fit where I review A4 units – no surprise there – but it sits in the doorway to my office quite happily and it just needs an extension on the USB lead, I am no superman but I unpacked and moved it into place on my own.
As one of the main means of communicating with the computer, the keyboard offers manufacturers the opportunity to devise various combinations of features.
Joining the numerous keyboards that have spent time on my desktop and being unjustly blamed for my poor typing skills is the Wireless Touchpad Keyboard from Sandberg.  This is a USB device that combines standard keyboard facilities with multimedia and application short-cut keys plus the touchpad feature that is standard on notebook / laptop units.
This is a tiny MP3 player that also can make voice recordings. Although it is tiny the screen is still very readable and with battery life of close to twenty hours between recharge it certainly has things in its favour.
Firstly it is small enough to fit in the palm of the smallest hand. It is 4cm wide and tall and only a smidgen over 1cm thick, the weight (before you attach the earbuds) is just 27grams. The top has on/off and back buttons as well as the 3.5mm jack socket. The right side has the volume up and down buttons and the rather good pin hole microphone. The bottom has the hold slider switch and another pin hole marked reset.
Two more items from those clever people in Hong Kong. First a 3D optical mouse with a built in card reader and second a USB set of traffic lights, exactly what the latter does you will have to read on to find out.
This looks like a standard two button mouse (black) with a grey scroll wheel in between. It has a 1.5metre lead so plenty of lead for the average user. The secret is the hole in the rear that accepts SD cards, it also accepts Mini SD and Micro SD (the sort found in the majority of mobile phones) by using one of the two adapters provided with the product. It is 10.5x5.5x3cm, the top is black, the base is black and where the two meet is clear to give a sort of view into the innards.
Now at the ripe old age of 17 years, Adobe Acrobat and its PDF (Portable Document Format) technology is the established lingua franca of the world of electronic documents.
During the past 17 years, the Adobe Acrobat software has undergone various changes and make-overs as user demands and competition from third-parties has increased. The latest version of this software, Adobe Acrobat 9, is no exception. In fact it could be said that this version is the result of a major overhaul with regards to new features and improved performance. As is standard with Adobe Acrobat, users have a choice of products depending upon their individual needs.
569545 gear4 houseparty 4 fron

Gear4 House Party 4

This is an iPod dock with speakers behind. It is of course also able to play MP3 files from an MP3 player and it also has an FM radio. So far it has refused to do the washing up, the vacuuming or even the dusting.
It is 27x13x13cm however the last figure the width can be as little as 4.5cm at the top. There is a small section towards the top of the black fabric that allows a red LED screen to show through this says which mode you are in. Aux, FM or iPod. If you insert an iPod into the dock it automatically charges it and if you were listening to the radio it changes to the iPod. You then have to press a button to return to the radio.
Lexmark has added wireless connectivity to the normal print, scan and copy aspects of a multi-function device.
The Lexmark X4875 is a box-shaped multi-function device that describes itself as a Wireless 3-in-1 unit.  Combining various shades of grey with a reflective cream topping, the X4875’s measurement are 178 x 454 x 351mm (H x W x D) and the unit weighs in at 7.1kg. As is the standard arrangement, the flatbed scanner unit is mounted on top of the printer.  Paper is loaded at the rear, with the paper slot capable of holding up to 100 sheets, and ejected from the front of the unit.
An opera singer, chatty bat, numerous rats and gargoyles all feature in an adventure that harks back to the style introduced by LucasArts
This is a tiny PC (size wise) of course if you have not got all the bits that connect then the price it costs will increase a good deal. All you get is the PC and a digital to analogue converter, so you need to find keyboard, mouse monitor/panel, CD/DVD drive and speakers.
The Asus Eee Box B202 measures 22x18x2.7cm and weights 1180 grams. Mine was black and as it is designed to work vertically looks a little like a book. All the connections are on the back and the front with the sides bare and the top and bottom having only ventilation holes. The rear has (from the top) wireless aerial, DC input, digital monitor/panel connection (as stated above digital to analogue connector is supplied), two USB ports, Ethernet port and Line In.
Not everybody wants a mobile phone with all the bells & whistles – sometimes basic simplicity is all you need.
The T303 is a Sony Ericsson slider phone.  This particular model is available in either Shadow Black or, as in the case of the review sample, Shimmering Silver.  The phone’s dimensions are 83 x 47 x 15mm (L x W x D) when closed while its weight is 93g. In its closed state, the phone’s appearance is dominated by its 128 x 160 pixel screen capable of displaying 65,536 colours.
If you use the Web, and even if you are not particularly interested in digital photography (but vital if you are), it is important that you calibrate your monitor to ensure that it displays colours correctly. You can do this painlessly with the DataColor Spyder 3 Pro.
How do you know whether your monitor is displaying colours correctly? In general you don’t. However, as the colours of images on my two LCD panels were noticeably different, I knew that one (or even both) was wrong. This was reinforced by the fact that some Web downloads that could be read clearly on one screen were virtually unreadable on the other with text just merging into the background. Correct colours are important.
I find it surprising that it is 11 months since I have reviewed an ink jet printer, by that I mean a printer as opposed to an all in one or a multi function unit. Unlike most inkjets it has two proper trays so you have far more control from the computer.
The Canon Pixma iP3600 inkjet printer measures 41x33x15cm with the rear upright tray closed, open the tray and add A4 paper and you add 22cm to the last figure the height. Sad to say it is black apart from a silver stripe so it is unlikely to pass the lounge police. The power lead on the left back and the USB recessed on the right back edge do not protrude so no extra space is required behind the unit.
These are slightly different, they are 100% waterproof, no not just for the British weather but for those who go out ‘on the water’ and therefore run the risk of going ‘Overboard’ here a carbon backpack and a waist pack.
This is really very different from the standard rucksack/backpack reviewed yesterday. It is stated to be a 25litre pack. It looks like a large sack with straps on the back. The material is obviously waterproof and feels like a cross between rubber and plastic. When open it is 68cm tall and 43cm wide. The stated sealed size is 49.5x34x16.5cm.
Mobile phones, MP3 players (including the iPod) and other devices all need recharging from time to time – an easy task at home but not so easy when on your travels.
As our personal complement of mobile devices continue to grow at a pace, the problem can arise as to which leads we take with us in order to recharge the various pieces of kit when on our travels.  The problem can be further exacerbated when these travels take in other countries.
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