Product Type: Elonex Digital Photo Frame
Newest Review: ... quality. It requires a power cord to operate and one initial problem I found with it was that the supplied cord was relatively short and if... more
Framing Your Memories
Elonex 7" Digital Photo Frame
Member Name: Mauri
Elonex 7" Digital Photo Frame
Advantages: Price and features
Disadvantages: Picture quality not brilliant,
To be honest when it came to digital frames I wasn't convinced especially when they first came out and commonly retailed at £50 + for even the smallest display. It was only recently when I saw the ELONEX DP9000 7" digital photo frame at a special offer price of a very competitive £14.99 compared to others on the market that I thought it might be worth a try. Elonex were a fairly big player in the early days of home PC equipment although they are not so visible in the market any more but they were always considered to be a mid priced but decent quality manufacturer.
WHAT'S IN THE BOX/APPEARANCE
Apart from the frame there is very little else in the package; a power cord a very thin but useful manual and a warranty card.
The frame looks like a mini PC monitor. It is all in black with a 7" TFT LCD screen surrounded by a 2cm thick black opaque plastic frame with a 16:9 widescreen aspect. The frame itself is very light around 300 grams and was only about 2.5cm thick, so quite compact but despite its lightness it seems of a good build quality. It requires a power cord to operate and one initial problem I found with it was that the supplied cord was relatively short and if you wanted to display your frame on a high shelf not that near a socket you'd have problems.
The frame has a neat pull out table stand that can be used to display in the portrait or landscape orientation. The screen displays at a 480 x 270 resolution and is backlit which means you don't need any external source of light to see the photos.
On the back of the frame there is a control panel with a number of features.
The use for these is mostly self explanatory.
On the side of the frame there are some slots, one for the power cord and then two others fro a standard USB stick and another for SD memory card.
HOW TO USE IT
To get started you need to insert a memory card or a USB memory stick holding your photos in standard JPG format and plug in the power source. When you access the menu you can change all aspects of your photo frame from different style of the slideshow display to the colour balance of the pictures. You can also play with the brightness and contrast although usually the camera set settings are the optimal ones.
The menu is 'context sensitive so depending on which option you choose the buttons take on different uses and the options that are not available are greyed out. This sounds a little complicated when you read it but with just a few minutes fiddling you get used to all the different choices and the use of the menu. Some of the choices on offer include splitting the screen to show more than one picture at a time in a slide show or on a static setting. You can change the way the photos change from one to another with an extensive array of 'fade' choices. You can also change the time set in between changing the photos. In addition to the slide show options the pictures can be viewed in different orientations on the screen at 90, 180 or 270 degrees and you can zoom into a photo to highlight some detail.
A further useful option allows you to store the currently displayed picture on the frame's own memory, it doesn't give you any indication on the manual or screen how much memory but I've managed to save around 10 photos but I suppose this could vary on the quality of the images.
Another interesting option was to display your photos as part of a calendar format although this depends on you setting the correct time and date to start with on the frame when you start using it. The calendar mode as a split screen with the calendar on the right and you chosen slide show on the left along with the time being shown.
There is also an auto time feature on the frame that means you can set the frame to automatically switch on or switch off at a set time.
The quality of the images on display depends on the quality of the images you have taken and what camera you have used. The frames best resolution is 480 x 234 pixels which is lower than most good digital cameras will give you so the frame is not ideal for displaying high quality photos with all the crystal clear detail. This is apparent when you get closer to the frame and on zooming the images do pixilate fairly quickly. However for most uses and viewed from a reasonable distance the display is at a good enough quality. One less satisfactory aspect though is the angle of viewing. Depending on where you position the frame and what angle you view it the picture does lose brightness and clarity, again this is more of a problem when viewed close up.
A FEW GRUMBLES...
On first operating the frame I found the menu selection with the buttons set on the back of the unit a little fiddly to use, I've also had problems with the menu option freezing and on a few occasion crashing, which require a 'system re-boot' by switching off the power and taking the memory stick out before I could get it to work again.
Another minor grumble was the difficult I had in taking the protective film off the screen when I first got it, it had no tag to grab onto and it was very fiddly to actually peel away without potentially scratching the screen. Keeping it clean and smudge free is also a little annoying but this is the case with most modern media equipment these days that seem to be made to attract dust and retain fingerprints and smudges.
I also found the manual that came with it to be factually incorrect when it stated that photos couldn't be stored on the frame's internal memory! This is not the case.
This compact digital photo frame is a cheap and convenient way to show off your photos. The quality of the images was a little (only a little) disappointing, this disappointed would have been much greater if I'd spent £40 or £50 on the frame but for the very reasonable £14.99 I paid this was not a huge problem. In fact for the price and considering the features included in this frame it was a good buy, the calendar feature alone would make it decent purchase. So overall while I'm still not sold on the idea of digital frames I think I can't really complain with what I got for my money.
© Mauri 2012
Summary: ELONEX Digital photo frame packed with features at a very competitive price
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