“ Digital Photo Frame - 7 inches „
=== The product ===
This is a 7" Technika advanced digital photo frame and the model that I am reviewing is the A700. This is the same as the model picture, is 7" but comes in black. This photo frame is exclusively available at Tesco according to the packaging.
=== The packaging ===
This came provided in a green and black cardboard box. The photo frame had a clear film over the front which helped to protect it from any marks or dirt and then there was a thick foam style covering over the top that was taped together to again ensure that the frame was kept protected. Within the box there was another box and this contained the black plug (with a long flex) and a booklet on how to set up the photo frame as well as a small black long circular piece of plastic which I later realised was a stand. The frame was well packaged in the box despite being purchased a couple of months ago and was in pristine condition when I removed it from the box. The packaging was plentiful to keep everything protected and yet still only took a few seconds to remove.
=== Set up & use ===
The set up of this was very simple. There was no USB cable with this so I just used an SD card that I usually keep in my digital camera. I plugged the SD card in to my computer, dragged and dropped 80 or so pictures and then I inserted the SD card in to the back of the digital photo frame. There was an on/off switch on the back, which I turned to on, I then plugged in the plug cable in to the back of the frame and then in to the wall, switched the power on and the photos began to display instantly.
There is a remote control that comes with this and by using this I was able to access the menu (by selecting the menu button) and then I could edit the clock, the date, change the length of time of the slideshow, set it to random and a few other things. The menu was incredibly simple to navigate too and if I lose the remote there are buttons on the back that I can use instead so that is good to know. There are also arrow keys to allow me to skip pictures faster than the slideshow time if I choose to which I did when initially wanting to show my husband the pictures that I had selected for the photo frame.
=== Overall opinion ===
I was really pleased when I received this digital photo frame. It is something that I have wanted for a while now as I have had one in the past as well as digital photo frame key rings but I thought that this would be something that I could use to display my wedding photographs and then add to over time.
I found that the packaging of this was ample and that the set up time was very quick and simple. It literally took me the length of time it took to put the SD card in to my computer, drag and drop some photos and then take the SD card and plug it in to the back of the photo frame. Two minutes, if that!
I do not know the price of this item as it was a gift and I believe that it is actually no longer on sale now unless you purchase it through eBay or a similar site. I received this a short while ago and I have been very happy of the quality of this product.
I love the black design and find that it looks bright and stylish when it is on. I love the options of how long to have the slideshow on for as this means that I can have them on for just 3 seconds or must longer if I choose to.
Overall I have been really pleased with this digital photo frame and was chuffed that my Mum bought it for me! This looks lovely on my bookcase and the flex on the plug is long enough that I am able to plug it in and leave it on my bookcase with no problems at all.
If you can pick one of these up now then I would definitely recommend it. There is no branding on the front of the frame either which makes it even more favourable in my opinion as I don't buy things just for the branding usually and therefore don't really need it plastered everywhere!
One of my best friends has a large digital photo frame in the middle of her mantelpiece and every time i go for a visit i'm drawn to it, i actually find it a huge distraction as i'm to busy watching the slide show and losing the conversation my friend is holding. I really wanted one for my house but found them a little pricy however this year Tesco had a huge sale on and i picked up the Technika advanced 7 inch digital frame.
Technika advanced 7 inch digital frame costs £18.00 full price but i paid £5.00 although the item was on the sales isle i'm sure there was a mistake with the price although i was not complaining bargain.
This is only a 7inch frame but ideal size for me. It comes boxed with instructions these are complicated to me because i am not good at technical stuff so me and my husband both set the frame up taking around one hour to get some photos on and playing.
Technika advanced 7 inch digital frame come in clear , black or silver made from plastic. I choose the clear as i change my decor often. Clear goes with everything and looks modem. It has a stand on the back and can sit like a portrait or landscape. I have mines sitting at landscape angle because that was the setting i had took my photos at and although you can fix this on the computer i didn't want my photos to look squished on the portrait setting.
To use the Technika advanced 7 inch digital frame you really need an sd card or memory stick the frame has slots for these on the side. I use my sd card from my camera and fix the photos on my computer normally cut and paste making the best from them then save them back onto my sd card before inserting it into the frame however if the pictures on the sd card or memory stick are perfect then this just pushes into the slot and can switch the fame on.
To switch the frame on you have to have the adaptor the the fame comes with meaning this powers the frame and has to stay plugged in at all time when the frame is on.
I found this a nuisance as we only have two plug points in my house so i have a small table where my lap sits and now my digital photo frame so its not in the best of areas for viewing.
When the frame is on you can use the remote control to flick thru the photos or set it up for a slide show, you can control the speed the slide show goes at this is easy to do but can only be done with the remote control.
The screen is clear and bright, it flicks over the pictures and everyone likes the frame especially my young daughter she would stand all day watching the photos change naming everyone she sees. All in i am happy with the frame and bargain price i paid for it. I now find it easy to change sd cards and start the frame up however it seems to be colleting dust and more off than on now think the novelty has worn off. I also don't like it running of the power all the time, if i had took time to read the box i would not have bought it, i made the mistake of just presuming it had a rechargeable better built in.
I give the Technika advanced 7 inch digital frame three dooyoo stars only and recommend the frame from the point of view that the screen is clear like watching a lcd tv with photos and that's what its meant to do.
I was a fairly early-comer to the use of digital photo frames. I'm not the kind of person who likes lots of photos scattered around the house but felt that, with a young son, I really should have some up. Irrational? Maybe.
Digital photo frames really sounded like the answer and Tesco's in-house brand of Technika caught my eye. The frames on offer were a fraction of the price of the branded products from the likes of Sony and Kodak but seemed to have very similar functionality. So, did my budget purchase make the grade? Kind of (but, to be honest the real answer should be "yes" as the more expensive models suffer from many of the same issues).
The first frame I acquired was a simple 7" frame. Aesthetically it's clearly a plastic affair being white with a clear Perspex surround but it's simply styled and should fit with most modern decors. The frame will stand in a portrait or landscape fashion and is angled slightly from the perpendicular to give the perfect viewing angle. It cannot be wall-mounted.
In terms of operation it's easier to have the frame aligned to landscape format but, personally, I prefer the look in portrait. Much too will depend on how you tend to take your photos as you have to rotate the photos before adding them to the frame's memory (unless you want to rotate them individually in browse mode). The reason landscape is preferable from a functionality perspective is that the operation buttons run down one of the long sides of the frame and, in portrait alignment the buttons are almost impossible to see without moving the frame. The buttons themselves are very small but clearly labelled.
The unit does come with a remote control but, to be honest, the functionality is so basic that you're not really going to add much with this. Were the screen bigger then I could see the point but for a 7" frame you're not going to be using this for a family slide show!
Start up is fairly easy although it can take a wee while if you have lots of pictures on the internal memory or the storage device that you are using for the frame to read. The start up screen (always in landscape format) also looks rather like a touch-screen menu and, as such, the temptation to press the screen is immense! Nothing will happen - you just have to wait!
Uploading pictures is simple. The built in card slot will take SD, MMC and XD cards and also has a slot for a memory stick (USB flash). The USB port takes preference if two devices are plugged in and is the more accessible of the two ports being on the side of the unit. The card reader is located at the bottom of the back of the unit meaning that you have to move and manhandle the unit to insert a card - the designers clearly didn't think about usability when designing that one. Pictures can either be read directly from these storage devices or saved to the internal memory. If there is no storage device attached then the pictures in the internal memory will automatically be shown.
Up to 15 images can be stored on the internal memory and, to be honest, it is this which we use most of the time. Reality has shown that about 11 high res images is the maximum that you can really achieve (16Mb). Copying the images to the internal memory is easy enough but you'll probably want the manual to hand the first few times you do it as the key combinations that need to be executed are not particularly intuitive.
Images can only be read in .jpg format - this is restrictive. Also, if you have folders and sub-folders these won't be recognised but all of the contents will show. Due to different aspect ratios of cameras not all photos will display across the whole of the frame. You can alter the photos to display "full screen" but this is not always satisfactory, depending heavily on photo quality.
Pictures stored on the frame (or uploaded from a memory device) can be displayed in a number of ways. The default mode is a slide show mode and you can alter the refresh rate to suit your needs (5 seconds through 1 minute). The range is adequate for most needs although personally I'd quite like the ability to have a really long slide show time to allow the picture to change throughout the day but without obviously circling.
If you don't want a slide show then you can select browse mode which effectively stalls the slide show and you can manually advance through the pictures. This is really the only mode that warrants a remote control.
The third, and final mode, is the thumbnail mode. For the life of me I'm not really sure why this mode is included. I guess it does allow you to sort through a lot of pictures reasonably quickly but I've found that the load times are slow and, as only 12 thumbnails are shown at a time it's often as quick just to use the slideshow mode on a short refresh rate. From thumbnail mode you can zoom into and pan across your pictures. Again I'm not sure how useful this function is. I would imagine that most people with digital technology would have a computer in order to view the pictures and zoom in and out. The 7" size of this frame doesn't have the screen clarity and quality that really warrants a zoom function.
Talking of the screen it is possible to adjust the screen quality just as you would a TV set. You can alter the brightness and "matting" - rather like contrast. These settings are quite fiddly to operate and, like the photo saving, you may need to have the manual on hand. As a result I've tended to set the frame once and leave it. The quality of the pictures is acceptable but you'll get better on a computer (or even by connecting your camera to the TV!) as the resolution is only 800 x 480 pixels. Colour reproduction is good (and arguably better than Kodak's screens). The viewing angle is not that wide and so, again, you'll not be using this for big family viewing. Just moving a few degrees from a head on view will make the photos look dark and much more than 35-40 degrees will just leave you with a black screen.
The frame is powered via a 9v power lead and cannot be run off batteries. This rather limits where you can place the unit.
Whilst at a basic level this frame did what we wanted it's not the kind of technology that I could really recommend. Its failings are actually common to a number of more expensive digital frames too. At first I thought this kind of gift would be ideal for those without computing resources to allow them to view digital photos but given the fiddly use and poor resolution I actually doubt that there would be many without computing resources who would find this useful. The elderly, for example, are not well served by this unit.
Our unit spends more time switched off than on (better for the environment!) and only really goes on when my son wants to see the pictures. Perhaps a true indication of how useful I think this is!
+++ BOTTOM LINE +++
It performs its functions reasonably well but whether you have a use for that functionality is questionable due to the fiddly nature of the unit.