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

Time and the technology behind the development of mobile phones do not stand still as can be seen with this next handset.
Joining the ranks of mobile phones with a 5-megapixel camera is Sony Ericsson's K850i model.  This candy-bar style phone adopts the standard Sony Ericsson arrangement of having the camera taking over the rear of the unit with the front housing the telephony functionality.  However there are a couple of design aspects that might cause some initial confusion with the user.
Three items from Belkin all sold as accessories for the iPod. First a clear Acrylic and brushed metal case. Next TuneBase FM that letís you listen to your iPod through your car stereo and finally a dock that allows you to charge and Sync your iPod. Is this iPod heaven?
Clear Acrylic and Brushed-Metal Case The model I was sent works with iPod's with video. The dimensions are 10.5x6.5x1.5cm. The front was blue brushed metal with the rest acrylic apart from the area over the click wheel that is a thinner plastic that enables protection for the wheel while at the same time enabling you to use it. The area over the screen seems to cause no distortion to the image displayed.
collins french beginners cours

Collins French for beginners

My school days were an awful long time ago and almost the only thing I remember about French is that the teacher had the most terrible case of halitosis I have ever come across.
French words are also in everyday use over here so they don't seem strange at all. I have quite enjoyed using this French 'Beginners' course, it is certainly my level, it appears easy and yet you are learning. It consists of a plastic case like an oversized DVD one that has two CD's on the left inside cover and a 212 page paperback book inside the right cover.
To paraphrase a popular performer of an earlier generation, ďI wanna tell you a secretĒ.
click to enlarge Come wind, come rain, come shine (maybe there is a pointer there), whatever the vagaries of the weather in April, we try to bring you the latest news as it happens.  In this case it was the launch of LG's next generation Black Label phone.  First we had the Chocolate phone (including a white version) with its innovative touch panel.
cherry evolution marlin wireless keyboard mous

Cherry Marlin

No I am not going to tell you about my girlfriend. The Cherry Marlin is wireless cordless desktop (keyboard and mouse) set, that I can honestly say took less than two minutes to setup.
Open box, remove items from plastic bags. Plug the charger into the mouse and a USB port, plug the receiver into a USB port and that's it. No linking required, most keyboard mouse sets need you to get the devices to pair but none of that here. There is a CD (to get the most from them) but as they come out of the box the mouse works (until charged, via the USB lead) and so does the keyboard. So as far as ease of use goes that could not be easier.
Up until recently I had not heard of the Sandberg Company. One of its first products to reach me is the Panther Sound System.
Hands up all those who remember the beeps and squeaks that were the audio output limitations of the games that were designed for the early computers.  Early music renditions from computers were of a similar elementary level.  Fortunately it didn't take too long for developers to come to the aid of our auditory senses as sound cards became a must have addition to those early systems.
It is not only cartoons that can feature talking feet; you can perform the same trick yourself with a little help from BamZ.
With different types of footwear gaining fashion icon status, you may perhaps wonder what the next stage (or should that be step) will be in the development of this particular item of clothing.  While logos are already an established part of what we wear (especially the fashion conscious who dress to be noticed rather than for comfort), maybe the possibility of some personalised advertising in the form of a message might appeal.
This is certainly not just another MP3 player. It is small enough to fit in even a childís palm, it has a good four line display as well as for good measure an FM radio and a voice recorder.
The Sansa Clip music player is 5.5x3.5x1.5cm and weighs only 27grams. Mine was black with the sliders on each side in a silver/grey colour. The rear of the unit has a good strong clip built in and once clipped to a pocket or belt it will stay there even for those active types who jog or run. Just above this almost invisible on the top edge is the pin hole microphone. The front has the small display 2.3x1.
Health checks, while not compulsory, can solve and prolong active life. Does your computer need such a check up?
Computers, like users (at least this one), tend to slow down with age.  This is as a result of the demands placed on computer resources by various peripherals and software.  As a result it could be to your advantage, and certainly benefit your computer's performance, to carry out various health checks and house-keeping tasks.  TuneUp Utilities 2008 is a product that offers to help in this respect.
canon pixma mp610 multi function printe

Canon Pixma MP610

This is a rather squashed looking grey unit, but it does have some surprises, it is an All In One unit, it can print direct onto CDís and DVDís and while on printing, in custom mode you get close to 30PPM.
The Canon MP610 is 44x40x18cm the last figure the height increases by around 20cm when paper is waiting to be printed in the vertical rear tray. Although it has the squashed look it is remarkably clean as all the controls are under a lid that also has the 5x4cm TFT display inset into the rear of the cover.
Here I am looking at two mice that do their normal jobs but also perform a second task. The first helps those making presentations while the second is a boon for those with sweaty palms.
Kensington Slim Blade Presenter Mouse As the box says the mouse presents well and travels even better. It is very slim you could say it looks somewhat squashed but for it's second job this is an advantage. It is 9x6x1.5cm. It has no wires as it is wireless and the receiver stores inside when not in use. This action also saves the batteries as they are cut off when the receiver is in the mouse.
Completing our look at BitDefenderís three-pronged protection approach brings us to a total security solution.
Rather than take the pick-and-mix route when deciding on how best to protect your computer from outside influences, you could opt for an all-in-one approach as adopted by BitDefender Total Security 2008.  Arriving with the promise of providing comprehensive proactive protection, this product is aimed at digital families and those looking for a total solution for their peace of mind needs.
tefal toast n eg

Tefal Toast Ní Egg

It looks like an almost conventional toaster but there is this Perspex area at one end. Yes while you cook your toast you can also poach your egg, it really does work, but please do not try this in your standard toaster.
It is 35x16x19cm. All the controls are on the front these consist of the normal vertical push arm to insert the toast and a horizontal slider to decide how dark you want your toast. To the right in a compass like arrangement are four push buttons. South is cancel, west is toast, north is toast and egg and east is egg. The power lead comes from under the unit it is a tab under one metre long and maybe it could be just that bit longer.
My first computer had a 20MB hard drive. How times have changed with the demands of modern software and more economic prices for storage.
The gigabyte is the modern day currency when considering storage capacity and even then three figures is often the norm rather than the exception.  Take, for instance, the latest mini offering to join the Maxtor brand stable.  This is the Maxtor OneTouch 4 Mini that is available in 80GB, 120GB or 160GB versions with the latter being the subject of this review.
Forget modern weapons, especially of the mass destruction type, and don your armour as you prepare for battle in a land of fantasy.
Set in the , Fantasy Wars is a turn-based strategy game developed by Ino'Co/1C and published by Nobilis.  It brings together humans, orcs, elves and dwarfs in a battle for supremacy.  You are given the choice of taking part in a campaign, single mission or multiplayer game as you select from an opening menu that also includes a tutorial option.
I usually find that Ministry Of Sound systems have the odd extra sometimes quite unexpected, this does not disappoint. Itís a CD, FM/MW radio, iPOD, SD Card and USB stick system.
This unit is black as are the speakers who as is the style are open displaying the cones. The main unit is 22x31x10.5cm, the speakers are each 15x15x21.5cm. The connecting leads are the bare wire type and are around 1.15metres in length. The case of the main unit is metal and the cases for the speakers are wood and have 10watts total power each speaker.
Is it a notebook docking station? Or is it a keyboard? In this case it is the Logitech Alto Cordless product which combines both features.
I have a theory that somewhere in the world, residing in a darken room, is somebody who has been set the task of dreaming up names for new products within the sphere of computing.  One of the latest offering to emerge from this room is that of Alto Cordless which brings together a notebook docking station and a wireless keyboard. Developed by Logitech, the Alto Cordless adopts a predominately black covering for both of its main elements.
yamaha tenori high tech musical instrumen

Tenori-On by Yamaha

Is this a musical instrument or a tool to be used by a DJ, in the right hands it is either or both. One thing is certain it is like nothing else I know.
click to enlarge It is 20x20x2.5cm and weights (without optional batteries) 680 grams. The case is brushed aluminium and there are two small speakers inset into the top rim of the unit. Inside the rim there are 16 rows and 16 columns of .7cm round push buttons that can light up. Round the rim apart from the two speakers there are 13 buttons, a spin wheel and 5x1.5cm LCD display to the wheels right.
Items tend to dribble through from the Toy Fair, it is held in January for the trade and items shown are often really aimed at the Christmas sales market which starts in the autumn. This was the only product that came home with me from the Toy Fair. It soon had favour amongst the young and even the not so young. The main difference between this and numerous other mini helicopters is that is easier to fly.
It is described as for '8 & up' but at least one six year old can fly it successfully. As with all these type of products the heaviest thing by far is the controller unit. From the tip of the rotor blade to the back of the unit is 29cm and it is 18cm across the blade, it stands 12cm tall. Mine was black with a clear Perspex cover for the cockpit. No polystyrene is sight unlike most of the lightweight offerings around.
Continuing my look at the new BitDefender range of products, it is the Turn of BitDefender Internet Security 2008.
As part of its stated policy to protect users' computers from various malicious threats, Softwin has released the latest versions of its BitDefender range of products.  Aimed at providing protection for all your Internet-connected needs for the family or small business user is BitDefender Internet Security 2008.  This product takes over the role filled previously by BitDefender Antivirus Plus v10 and BitDefender Professional Plus v9.
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