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davidraybould

davidraybould
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Member since: 16.03.2011

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      16.12.2011 21:50
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      Excellent and much more than just a toy

      I absolutely love my Apple I pad II. I am not going to go overboard on detailing the features and technical information because there are lots of great reviews that do this far better than I could, but I feel the need to make it clear that the I pad really is an incredible piece of kit.

      I went for the 32 gb 3G version after thinking about it very hard. The memory size is purely down to personal requirements, but for me it was easy to rule out the 16Gb version because I have around 13gb of music that would use up the memory for a start. You don't have to transfer your music to your I pad if you don't want, which is handy to know, but I still think the larger memory is the better option. Having said that I didn't feel the need for the 64gb version as I can't see my self ever using that amount.

      In terms of the 3G feature I would definitely recommend choosing this feature over the none 3G version unless you are absolutely certain that you will only need or want to use your iPad in a place that you have a reliable wi-fi connection. For me the whole point of having an iPad was so that I could be flexible and mobile with a variety of tasks and functions and without 3G the functionality is limited if you are on the go. For the sake of £75 or so you have so much more potential at your fingertips and you can buy pay as you go data packages so don't have to commit to a monthly contract.

      I always knew that the iPad would be an extremely good toy, but always thought the price was quite steep for a bit of fun. Over the last few years I looked into them closer and closer to explore the utility as a work tool. I eventually convinced myself that it could be more than a toy and might be worth trying for work (as well as fun). I took the plunge and hoped I was right.

      It turns out quite emphatically that I was right. The features and apps that you can get (many for free) really turn this device into an incredible portable piece of kit. I knew I could check e-mails and surf the net, but it's also remarkably good for creating documents, storing your calendar, voice recognition transcription and general sharing of data and information.

      As someone that has an unpredictable work routine, often taking me away from my office, but not always with prior warning, this device has given an incredible injection of diverse flexibility and means that I can pretty much continue with any ongoing tasks while I am on the go rather than having to wait to return to my office.

      It is the first tablet that I have owned so can't compare to others but I have absolutely no hesitations or reservations in recommending this product.

      Aside from work productivity there are so many fantastic features for pleasure that can be downloaded. This aspect of it really makes it the complete package. The streamline design is perfect for easy portability, but at the same time it is large enough to make it very easy to use.

      I have barely used my PC since buying this. I would not go so far as to say that it can replace a PC, but it is the perfect companion that just adds a different dimension to your possibilities.

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      • Quinny Buzz 3 / Pushchair & Pram / 21 Readings / 18 Ratings
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        22.05.2011 22:52
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        Excellent purchase

        Firsts things first. I am by no means a pram expert. This is the only pram that I have ever owned for our first child so I can only really compare to other prams that we tried in the shops. Overall we have been very happy with the purchase. The Quinny buzz is certainly durable, versatile, comfortable for both baby and parents and fairly simple to use. One of the attractive features of this pram over some of the other all in one travel systems that we tried was that the buzz will last until our daughter can walk without needing a push chair, so there won't be any need to buy another buggy in future.
        The features of the pram are easy to use. The frame opens out with incredible ease, basically you just release a catch and it opens itself. The parts remove and click into place very easily and it all feels very sturdy, which gives you full confidence. The pram body is fully adjustable and can be rear or forward facing and can be set at different inclines. The handle can also be adjusted to a range of heights to suit you.
        My only frustration since buying the Quinny is the number of flat tyres that we have had. If you do buy one of these then I would say that a puncture repair kit and spare inner tubes are essential acquisitions. This is a mild frustration, but when in full working order the tyres do make for a more comfortable journey so overall I think worth the frustration.
        I would say that the main draw back to the Quinny Buzz is the price, and I don't just mean the pram itself, but if you want to buy any accessories such as parasol, foot muff etc, then they all come at a fairly hefty price. That being said the pram is good quality, durable and in my opinion stylish, so if you are able to afford a Quinny Buzz and like what it has to offer then go for it, you won't be disappointed. However, I would not say that it is worth pushing the boat out to purchase one of these. There are cheaper alternatives out there and I don't think the advantages of this pram are so great that its worth breaking the bank over.
        I have given 4 stars to reflect what I see as the main draw back, the price. The Buzz is still good quality, versatile and nice to use, but I don't think it stands out quite enough to mean that the expense is fully justified, though if you can afford it without struggling then it is worth it. One tip with the price though is to wait for a new line to come out and try and find a retailer selling off the old ones. We managed to do that and got a Quinny dreami carry cot (usually about £120 on their own) and shopping bag included with the pram for the same price you pay for just the Buzz itself.

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      • Innocent Smoothies / Soft Drink / 14 Readings / 12 Ratings
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        20.03.2011 21:29

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        Good branding and nice drink

        These drinks are absolutely delicious. They taste fresh and you can feel the goodness as you take each sip. There are a variety of flavours, my personal favourite being the Pineapple, Coconut and Banana. An excellent way to get 1 of your five a day.

        If there is a down side it has to be the price. At over £1 for a fairly small bottle they are not something that I can afford to buy everyday, but I always enjoy them when I do buy them.

        I have found that they now come in larger carton style packaging which are available at most supermarkets. These are more economical and you could probably keep a spare small bottle on the side to keep topping up so it works out cheaper.

        If you like fruit and enjoy healthy drinks/food then these innocent drinks are highly recommended. I think the branding is a stroke of genius too.

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        20.03.2011 19:17
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        Excellent for music lovers who just want a device for music

        The i-pod classic is a simple, but stylish MP3 player perfect for a music lover to store a huge back catalogue of music. I would recommend it for people who want a simple music player that will serve as a reliable storage device and player for a vast collection. It is not so highly recommended for people who want a diverse and multi-functional device because, whilst the i-pod classic does have the ability to play films and games, the experience is limited due to the small screen and limited number of games available and such functions are probably catered for better by devices such as the i-pod touch.

        I purchased my i-pod classic around 4 years ago. At the time I was choosing between the Classic and the Nano, but opted for the Classic because of the huge memory, thinking that it would be required for my large collection of CD's. As it happens I have used barely a fraction of the 80GB memory, even though I have about 10 solid days worth of music on there, and I can't see that I will ever fill it, but nevertheless it is a device that I rank amongst my most useful, valued and well used.

        I am not really of the generation that downloads all my music directly from the internet. I still like to own a hard copy as collecting the CD's is part of the fun. However, I love having all my music in one place and being able to pick up one small, simple looking device to access any music I want at any time.

        MP3 players have been around for years now, but they never really seemed to become popular until Apple launched the colossus i-pod. It seems that Apple have the key recipe for re-branding and developing existing lack lustre gadgets into world beating phenomena that become the 'must have' gadget of the time. They have done exactly the same thing with the i-pad tablet. Such tablets have been around for a while too, but did anyone really have a yearning desire for one until the i-pad was launched?

        The i-pod classic is no longer a new or revolutionary device with state of the art capabilities, but it is perfectly suited to the music lover who just wants a good device that is well designed and easily to use.

        The i-pod classic is very well built and sturdy. Although it can be prone to scratching on the back, but the design is very slick and aesthetically pleasing. It is easy to use and navigate around and you can access your music in a variety of different ways. You can simply scroll through a cover list which shows the front covers of your albums in alphabetical order, by artist, but you can access through simple lists by artist, by genre, or even by composer amongst others.

        A function that I really like is the 'on the go' play list feature. This is where you hold down the middle button for a few seconds and add an item to a fully customisable play list. This works for individual songs but can also work for entire lists. I find this really useful because if I want to randomly listen to songs, but by particular artists then I can easily select those artists and create a play list that includes their entire back catalogue which I can then ask the device to play at random. Alternatively you can create a list made up of individually selected songs, whatever suits your mood at the time.

        In terms of the sound quality I find it absolutely first class, whether listening through the earphones, through a docking station or in my car. The battery life is also pretty good and I have not found any reduction in the battery life over the 4 years that I have owned it. The i-pod is easy to charge. As part of the package you will get a USB cable for linking to a computer and the i-pod will automatically charge each time you plug it in. If you want to be able to charge it in other ways then an additional investment will be necessary. Most docking stations will charge the i-pod when it is docked and you can also get in-car chargers or mains charger. I found that a mains charger was an important purchase, particularly for when going away on holiday, but you can pick those up at fairly low cost.

        Navigation is easy too. The circular scrolling action works easily and really helps to skip through items and access things you want quickly.

        Overall the i-pod classic is an extremely good MP3 player. Anyone who is just interested in music will love this device, but don't go for it if you are looking for a more interactive experience as there are more advanced options out there. When the classic was first launched it was certainly revolutionary and was easily worth 5 stars. Because it has had such an impact on the way that music is consumed in society I think that 5 stars is well deserved even today. That is said with caution to people out there who are wanting more than just a music player and I think I have made myself clear that this will probably not suit.

        I rate this device as a 5 star MP3 player because it is simply an MP3 player and therefore should be reviewed as an MP3 player. It has a few add on features, but is not an all singing all dancing multi-media device. If it were trying to be the latter then I could only give it 3 stars, but it is not. It is only aspiring to be the former and it really is a legendary product which is more than worthy of top marks.

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          19.03.2011 19:48
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          Good introductory pack

          I find that the Jim Dunlop brand in general is trusty and reliable brand for guitarists. These picks (or plectrums, as I prefer to call them) are no different and they are suitable for the task they are designed for.

          It is difficult to get too excited or carried away when writing a review about what is essentially a small piece of plastic to aid your playing, but I have over the years used some rather cheap and nasty plectrums and whilst I can't say a plectrum has ever completely ruined my playing (that really would be a case of a poor workman blaming his tools), a cheap plectrum can detract from the pleasure of playing guitar.

          I have always found Jim Dunlop plectrums to be good quality, comfortable to use and very durable. They are not gimmicky and are very much designed for the task rather than for visual effect, which I feel is a huge plus. Whilst it might be fun to have a plectrum with a picture of Yoda (I haven't got one, but have seen them) or Kenny from South Park (I confess to having one of those), such plectrums always seem to satisfy aesthetically rather than when actually playing. Jim Dunlop plectrums are the stark opposite - they are good for playing, but not particularly exciting visually. Chances are you'll like to show people the one with Yoda, but always choose the Jim Dunlop when playing.

          This pack itself is good for people who want a variety of plectrum sizes, or who aren't entirely sure of their preference when it comes to plectrum thickness.

          The plectrums range in size from a very thin 50mm to a very thick 1.14mm. Personally I use the ones in between those extremes, the 1.14mm purple plectrum was far too thick for my requirements and found itself being owned by the bass player in our band, whereas the 50mm red plectrum on the other hand felt like I might as well be using paper so found itself in the bin.

          Those comments are just my personal preference and do not detract from the quality of the plectrums, but it illustrates the point that the whole range will not suit you. This is why in conclusion I would say the pack is perfect for a beginner who is wanting to find out which thickness suits their playing. I prefer to buy plectrums individually so that I've got a supply of ones that suit me rather than a range that includes some that suit, but some that don't.

          In general Jim Dunlop plectrums are worth 5 stars, but I am reviewing the pack and that is let down by the fact that they can't all suit everyone. I like Walkers crisps and would score them very highly, but if reviewing the multi-pack option I would have to score them down because I don't like Prawn Cocktail. That very much sums up how I feel about these plectrums and hence the reason why I have dropped a star.

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          18.03.2011 15:19
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          Worth trying to see if it works

          This is one of the strongest anti perspirants available without prescription and really helps combat problematic excessive sweating that your ordinary spray or roll ons don't. It is only recommended if those ordinary products don't work.

          If your usual anti perspirant/deoderant does not work in preventing perspiration then this is worth trying before speaking with your Doctor, who can prescribe anti perspirants even stronger than this if necessary.

          PerspireX works by closing the skin's pores around the area of application. You apply it at night when the sweat glands are less active and then wash it off in a morning. It can be painful, especially if you apply too much which is easily done because your instinct and desperation to prevent sweating can encourage you to apply liberally, but that will only result in soreness and pain. Only a small amount is required, which will probably cause a degree of itching, but shouldn't be too painful.

          As humans we are all different to each other, which means that PerspireX won't work for everyone in the same way that it won't be necessary for everyone to even consider using it. Some people may find the side effects unbearable and others maybe won't experience any at all. I found that I could use Perpirex with some mild to moderate itching, but I could apply it one night and get around three days sweat free without applying it again.

          It came as an immense relief to get results from a product that I had been hoping for with so many other products that had only let me down. PerspireX is relatively expensive to buy, but this is not a particular issue because you only apply it in small amounts and the bottle therefore lasts a good length of time.

          I certainly recommend trying PerspireX if you find other products do not work. Expect some side effects of using it and see whether it works. If it doesn't work, or if you find the side effects unbearable then consult your Doctor as there are other Prescription options available for excessive sweating.

          It may just work for you without that being necessary and life when it does work is bliss.

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          18.03.2011 12:13
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          Extreemly reliable and should be considered by all who want to purchase a capo

          I have used a range of different capos over the years. From cheap and cheerful to well constructed expensive capos they all do the same thing, but with a diversity of effect.

          I've used some that are so cheap and poor that I've actually known them fly off mid song, not good when you're on stage and extreemly frustrating even when playing your favourite songs at home. I would certainly stay away from purchasing a very cheap capo as you'll just end up growing tired of it and making a more expensive purchase in the end.

          I have known some expensive capos to be extreemly sterdy and reliable in terms of quality, but can be quite fiddly to put on the guitar.

          Overall I would say the Jim Dunlop Trigger strikes the right balance becasue it is incredibly reliable and fit for the task, but is also simple and easy to apply. It maybe seems a little pricy when considering which to buy and you certainly can get capos much cheaper, but in the end its a quality purchase and well worth spending a little more for becasue the only way you'd have to replace this is if you misplaced it somewhere.

          A capo is really an essential piece of kit for any guitar player. For begginers a capo opens up the options of songs available to learn as there are so many songs where a capo is used. For more advanced players a capo similarly widens the options, but also allows you to explore different sounds and can be very useful for inspiring people interested in writing songs. You can also play about with other people's songs and really explore different ways of creating interesting cover versions.

          Any guitar player should certainly have a capo. If you are making your first purchase, or making a replace purchase then this capo is well worth considering. There are other's available that are also worth considering, but if you get this one you will be happy with it and there should be no need to ever need to replace it.

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        • HTC Desire / Smartphone / 14 Readings / 10 Ratings
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          17.03.2011 21:31

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          Fantastic smart phone

          This smart phone easily deserves 5 stars. It does everything that you could possibly wish for and compared to rivals such as the i phone and is available on relatively innexpensive tariffs.

          I previously used the HTC HD2 which I found was a nice phone to use. I was then offered a contract phone at work and got the desire and since then have sold the HD2 becasue it was well and truely relegated to the sidelines. At first I was going to have an i phone, but there were none in stock at the time, and to be honest I'm glad because I have loved the Desire ever since I got it.

          It is easily ahead of the HD2, mainly because of the Operating System. The Android system really takes this phone to a level above the HD2. The speed of the phone, interactivity and quality/volume of applications available is far superior. There were some aspects of the HD2 that I preferred, mainly the style and layout of the phone, but for general usability the Desire is far superior.

          I honestly can't say how the Desire compares to i phone as I have never owned one, but what I can say is that everything I had wanted an i phone for is fulfilled by the Desire.

          The Android Market place is fantastic, internet browsing is extreemly good and user friendly and e mail is good and easy to use too. The unique spin that the Desire has to offer is that you are in control of the appearance and there are five seperate fully customisable pages so you can really put your own personal stamp on it.


          The main weakness of the phone is the poor battery life. I would prepare to get used to taking your charger with you as it doen't last all that long, especially when using heavily. That being said when you consider what it can do and the very high quality display it is no surprise that it needs a bit of juice to keep it going.

          Highly recommended.

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          16.03.2011 22:44
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          Well worth considering

          I have played guitar for around 15 years and throughout the years have purchased Earnie Ball Super Slinky strings many times. I have used other brands also and would not say that Ernie Ball's stand alone as being the outright best purchase, but all things considered they are amongst the brands that I happily use time and time again.

          The price of the strings obviously vary depending on the retailer, but I have always found them to be reasonably priced, between £5 and £6. They always seem to last a good amount of time and personally I like the light sound that they compliment.

          I think strings are a very subjective thing. Whether you will like these depends entirely upon the set up you are used to and the type of sound that you are trying to achieve. Personally I like Ernie Ball Super Slinkies on my Fender Strat. I find that the style of playing that the strat lends itself to is complimented to emmensly by using these strings. On the other hand I also have a Gibson Les Paul and I tend to stay away from using these strings on that particular guitar as I find that the opposite applies.

          Overall it really is a matter of preference. The strings are certainly good quality and the standard is befitting of the price making them extreemly good value.

          I would certainly recommend giving them a try. Whether they actually suit will depend on your own preferences and style, but they are very much worth considering.

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