Are you looking for the best hair straighteners to go to that party, or just look great for work. We put 4 different hair straighteners to the test.
When I received four different hair straighteners I wondered what could be different about each. Most straighteners these days have ceramic plates, held to be better for your hair, and swivel leads to stop the wire from tangling up (a good invention).
Although many users tend only to think of Olympus as a developer and manufacturer of traditional and digital cameras, the company also has a long established reputation for producing high quality digital voice recorders.
Recently the company expanded its range of voice recorders with three new models in its DS series. These models are the DS-30, DS-40 (the subject of this review) and the DS-50. Measuring 110 x 37.5 x 16mm and weighing 73g, the DS-40 is a handy size device in more ways than one. It will fit easily into a pocket or bag, without an unsightly bulge, when not in use.
The demise of
VHS video tape has left a big hole in convenient TV recording not filled by the promise of DVD.
This Thomson box from Top Up TV offers a rich set of features at an unbeatable price.
Hard disk recorders have been around for a little while - most famously pioneered by Tivio and
then, in the UK, by the Sky+ box. Great if you're a Sky subscriber. With the advent of FreeView
based Digital Television Recorders (DTR) this facility is available to the masses without
the expense or restrictions of a subscription-only services. have launched their own product in this space - the
" " - not quite as catchy as "sky+" - but don't let that put you off.
This is an Analogue TV but it has almost any connection at the rear so with a digital PVR you have a new TV with the ability to view and play HD.
This is the first TV I have reviewed that is supplied with a screwdriver. Yes it is self assembly - of the stand - the screws are provided as are the screw holes and after a couple of minutes it is ready. A good idea should you ever need to relocate it as the box for a 32 inch TV is tiny only just bigger than the screen so the stand needs to be flat in the boxes back.
Over the last couple of months we've reviewed a number of coffee machines, across a wide
price range and with distinct capabilities and characteristics. We're just about
coming down from our caffeine high so now is a good time to offer a summary!
First of all a few terms so we're all singing from the same hymn sheet!
is the common 'brew' across the machines we reviewed. Think of this as a base coffee
from which others are made. Espresso is a short (40ml) strong black coffee. From this base
you can add hot frothy milk to make , for example. The machines we reviewed made coffee either from special proprietary 'capsules', such
as the system or the Braun Tassimo capsules, from fresh ground coffee or from
While neither of these two items are likely to be needed that often when one or other is it will certainly get you out of a hole.
USB Portable Floppy Drive Nowadays the majority of new PC's are sold with an 'A' drive, the capacity is small and most situations can be handled with a pen/stick drive. There are occasions when these will not do and one of these could well the one that totally knackers you or me. Certainly if you have several PC's then if Windows will not boot then a USB floppy could be a 'lifesaver'.
With this little foursome she can have a pampering experience any night of the week - and you'll still have change from £100. Great gadgety beauty gifts for the girls at Christmas.
Boots are a firm favourite with shoppers at Christmas so we asked Boots for a selection of their gadgets for the girls this Christmas. They sent us some of their popular products: The Boots Compact Epilator, Lee's Box of Tricks and the No 7 Rechargeable Manicure Set. We also received the Mini-Massager on the Go, by Homedics, which you can also buy from Boots. For girls who want smooth legs for Christmas and New Year - a nice little epilator - affordable and simple to understand.
While the various MP3 type devices were designed as personal music players that has not stopped developers from trying to expand the range of audience participation.
Entitled , the provides additional audio output capabilities to your MP3 player. Although it does come with a claim, clearly mentioned on the packaging, that the product has been designed for all MP3 players, it is obvious that the iPod has had a major influence on the design concept but more on this a little later.
I am so impressed with the Kaleidoscope games. It's fantastic to see a company that has come up with a truly original, high quality and addictive game. The Kaleidoscope games deserve to reach the iconic status of Monopoly and Scrabble, when the other board games inspired by TV programmes and novelty characters are 6 feet under.
Just when I thought that was the perfect game, along came it's big brother -
Krusade - a board game for 2-4 players. I liked Kaleidoscope
Classic, the original game, so much that it was awarded the
Gadgetspeak 5*5 award a few weeks ago. Kaleidoscope
Classic In brief, Kaleidoscope Classic is a
brainteasing puzzle of 18 pieces which cover 64 squares and can placed in at least 101 ways to give different patterns.
While I have seen cheaper unbranded boxes on sale in adverts, this is a new ball park low in a nationally advertised box it breaks the £20 price point and of course it’s not a sale price.
This is a simple black box, it is 21x17x3cm with the aerial lead inserted. There is a single LED on the front and the mains lead is hardwired into the rear. Unusually for basic Freeview units not only does an aerial input but an output as well. Most will connect to a SCART socket and it of course has one of those.
For those of you that like espresso, but often just want a jug of warm coffee then
Krups have combined both functions in a single unit.
The is a stylish brushed stainless steel and black plastic unit. The combination of espresso and filter means that it's physically bigger than other machines we've tested at 35x32x31cm (Width x Height x Depth) - my measurements from the actual unit and weighing in at 3Kg.
With music where ever you go, Sony Ericsson’s slider model offers plenty of functionality.
The Sony Ericsson W850i is the company's first slider model to grace its family of mobile phones. Available in either golden white or precious black, this phone measures 98 x 47 x 21mm and weighs 116g which, while not the smallest device around, is a reasonable size for the functionality it provides.
Everybody loves to win a prize especially a possible life-changing one as is offered by this next product.
Eternity is supposed to last for a very, very long time. In fact it is meant to be the infinite period that never ends. Yet despite this apparent longevity, not only do we have Eternity but Eternity II. I should make clear that this Eternity and the follow-up Eternity II are puzzle type games that have been developed by Christopher Monckton who was at one time (but not an eternity ago) an aide to Margaret Thatcher.
This is a powerful ‘intermediate’ user camera, more than point and shoot but a step down from a DSLR however it has 6x optical zoom and can take 12mega pixel images.
This is not a small unit, but somewhat less in size than a DSLR. It is 11x7x4.5cm and weights close to 400grams with it's 4x'AA' batteries inserted. I found it surprising that such a powerful unit only comes with 'AA' batteries. The case is silver in colour apart from the right hand side 'the grip' area which is black. Almost all the controls are also in this area.
Usually at Gadgetspeak we review products. Recently we were given the chance to review a video encoding technology called Mobiclip. A technology that will enable mobile phones to store movie length films at high quality and without impinging on battery life. We were sent a Nokia N73 with a film on memory card using the Mobiclip technology by Actimagine.
You can't actually go out and buy 'Mobiclip'. It's one of those things to be aware of and look out for when buying a mobile phone. You'll find some Nokia, Sony Ericsson and Motorola phones that come with Mobiclip technology and, if you want to be able to watch full length movies on your phone, this may end up being one of the reasons why you choose one phone over another.
As my current main phone was suffering from a dodgy power connection, it was time to check out a replacement.
Generally I do not believe in co-incidence but sometimes circumstances force me to reconsider my position. Take, for instance, the combination of two recent events. On the very day that I had decided to review a new BT phone, who should turn up but a team of BT engineers. Their assigned task was to replace the telegraph pole situated outside my home. To me the original pole look fine but I was not consulted about the matter.
The Thrustmaster Run'N'Drive is a wireless game controller for the Sony PS/2, PS/3 and IBM PC - an ideal
alternative to the wired variety if you're fed up with untangling wires - or just want to get further
away from the screen.
To look at this controller is similar to a standard PS/2 controller and includes all the standard gaming buttons one would expect. For PS/2 users two vibrating motors are included - with the option to switch them off to save battery. I found the basic controller pretty comfortable to hold - the two 'wings' are much longer than those on a standard PS/2 controller.
A number of companies have produced photo frames, most however are no bigger than seven inches, so this at 50% bigger could well be worth a look, it also can play music.
It looks like a red wooden frame with another white spacer frame inside. The total external dimensions are 31x25cm. It has 3.5cm of depth, if you support it on a desk a snap in black plastic fitting fits into the black back of the unit and it leans slightly back in either portrait or landscape mode just like a traditional photo frame. The internal white spacer frame is 2.2cm wide top and bottom and 2.5cm wide at the sides.
A few weeks ago I told you about a couple of games/puzzles from Coiledspring games, here I am looking at two further offerings from the same company. Read the other review they are made of wood and are quality.
Katamino This is a game for one or two players and it can be easy or hard dependant on the number of pieces you use. Described as suitable for age 3+ in this case I can see at the basic levels that children of that age could compete. You have a wooden board 30x14x1.5cm a divider bar placed at various points along the board (according to difficulty) and twenty different sized coloured shaped bricks.
OK, so we know they all want an iPOD, the Wii and a Nintendo DS Lite - that's obvious. But what else could you put under the Christmas tree. Here at Gadgetspeak we've personally road tested some great products with real kids (big and small) and here is our list of Top 10 ideas. Your can see a full review of each by clicking on the titles.
1. - by Braingym (UK) Ltd, from £14.95 - Gadgetspeak 5*5 Award Kaleidoscope A fascinating game with a myriad of
possibilities for kids and adults. With eighteen pieces which cover
64 squares to make up a chequerboard, this game is part strategy and