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.
The quick and easy camcorder market is certainly hotting up as Flip Video introduces a new model to the Flip family.
Although it was not all that long ago that the Flip Ultra was launched in the UK, Flip Video has followed up that initial offering with the new Flip Mino. Again targeted primarily as the “fun loving” user who wants the ability to capture video content quickly and then transferred it to a computer or viewed on a television set, the Flip Mino is a camcorder that puts simplicity near the top of its feature set.
I first saw this unit last autumn and then one of those black hole moments happened and my review vanished - around the same time as a 2GB SD card without all the photos backed up – but now the panel is with me again.
For such a large unit the HannsG HG281 is not heavy nor even that large at 67x50x13cm this includes the stand that raises the screen 8cm above whatever it is sitting on. The screen rotates around 20degrees left and right. The inner screen dimensions are 60x38cm giving the notional diagonal measurement of 27.5inches. The units weight is a tad under 11 kilos so easily moveable for all but a child.
Conducting a web search for “Ancient Secrets” could well result in hits relating to hygiene and gift products, exotic cooking, nasal cleansing, bikini waxing or even Mayan civilisation. However, in this case, “Ancient Secrets” is a game developed by GameHouse.
Offering to improve your listening experience with a portable music player is a device from Orbitsound
Portable device, such as the various iPod models, MP3 players and mobile phones, were designed specifically for a personal listening experience with regards to the music stored on these types of devices. Users, however, had other ideas and wanted to share their choice of music with friends and family. As a result manufacturers came up with kit that can turn a personal device into one that can deliver content to numerous listeners.
Around ten days ago (18-05-09) I told you about a method to expand your desktop via a second monitor that offering was from Lindy, here another such unit this time from Kensington who are perhaps better known for Mice.
The Kensington Dual Monitor Adapter measures 9x5.5x1.5cm. There are just two connections a DVI one on one end and a small USB one on the other. Do not worry if you have a VGA connection as a 5.5x4x1.5cm DVI to VGA connector is provided. A 90cm USB to small USB lead is provided. There is a small eleven language Instruction Guide of which the first nine pages are in English and it is well illustrated and should be enough to get you up and running.
Technology is making great inroads into all forms of education. Traditional methods of gaining information and storing content are being superseded by the Internet and computers.
Some may remember that a number of months ago I looked at a product designed for use within educational establishments. This product, from AlphaSmart, was entitled Neo ( ). The Neo, for those who missed my original review, is a lightweight unit that brings together the functionality of a portable word processing, including KAZ Typing Tutor, with features such as USB and Infrared connectivity along with a six-function calculator.
With most All In One or Multi Function units coming with bundled OCR software, is there still a place for a standalone suite not tied to a scanner. For any user who takes time to train for near perfect results the answer is yes.
This is in fact more than just ReadIris as it has other items included the most useful is likely to be CardIris that can scan, read and store information from business cards. I installed everything and ten minutes and three installations later I was 2100MB of hard disc space down.
Here I am looking at Kitchen Scales and an Electric Carving Knife from a chef (Antony Worrall Thompson) who graces the TV screens but as far as I know does not throw tantrums that a number of other ‘celebrity’ chefs do.
The scale is 21x18x4cm and weights 44ograms. The weighing table is 17x13.5cm and is the left portion of the unit. The scale is powered by two ‘AAA’ batteries (supplied) that fit in the base. Interestingly it looks as if the scale was designed for four battery operation as the area behind the door is laid out for two rows of two batteries but contacts have only been provided for one. There are three round buttons below the 4.
To paraphrase a Lionel Bart song of yesteryear, “Toys ain’t what they used to be.”
Toys use to be just toys that you were meant to enjoy without any additional baggage when I was a child. You had your favourites and would play with them for hours quite happily. There were even occasions when you created your own versions of a particular toy that was unobtainable due to financial constraints or other reasons. Nowadays though, toys seem to be weighed down by issues dealing with marketing, licensing and even political correctness.
I first heard about this on a TV program, found the link and arranged to try one. Things do not always go to plan and this certainly was one of those occasions.
While netbooks are the current hot topics, notebooks continue to push boundaries with regards to performance and style.
As part of its energy saving Aspire Timeline series, Acer has released the Aspire 5810T model. Featuring a 15.6-inch HD, high-brightness CineCrystal LED-backlit TFT LCD screen, the Aspire 5810T has an impressive presence that is reinforced by its brushed aluminium cover and its slim-line depth. When closed this unit measures 378 x 259 x 24.8mm while the weight has been kept down to 2.5kg including the detachable battery pack.