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joshdpl

joshdpl
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Member since: 08.01.2012

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    • HP Pavilion G6-1257sa / Laptop / 12 Readings / 9 Ratings
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      10.01.2012 23:44
      3 Comments

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      Good, but not great

      I bought this laptop to take into school everyday. The two main criteria were that it had to be lightweight and have the capacity to store large amounts memory-intensive files.

      So I shall start with this. The laptop is light enough to carry around in a backpack or laptop bag slung over the shoulder, although it begins to get a little heavy when I carry around books etc too. Still, gives my muslces a bit of toning I suppose. You also have to offest this against the good size screen and decent keyboard, which lighter (and therefore smaller) laptops and netbooks do not have.

      For the first month of use the cooling fan was silent. Now it emits a loud noise; noisier than my PC. I will update this review when I have discovered what it is, in case it is a design flaw. The battery life is long - it lasts me the whole working day and the evenings. On the other hand, the battery life display is not good at letting me know precisely how much I have left - the numbers for battery life, as a percentage, and hours left fluctuate, even when one remains constant.

      Storage-wise. I have persistently continued to download numerous resources from the internet and write another five - ten word documents per day. I also have spreadsheets, powerpoints and photos stored. So far, the computer speed has not been impacted upon.

      On top of this it has:

      A reasonable webcam, although unuseable for official business calls on skype, but good enough for a chat to your friends and family.

      A good speaker output sound - some laptops I have used, the sound has got lost even full volume.

      In-built wi-fi is useful in removing the need for a dongle or ethernet cable. It also automatically attempts to connect to the strongest connections available.


      On the whole, I can't say anything really bad about this laptop, although it just doesn't feel like the product is quite 'there'.

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      • Fujitsu fi 6130 / Scanner / 9 Readings / 9 Ratings
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        10.01.2012 01:23

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        A "good enough scanner"; not ideal though

        I use this scanner as part of a work placement to convert large (thick, multiple paged documents) into digital files. The files can be up to individual 70 pages. For optimum efficiency, it would be necessary for the scanner to be able to scan all of these without the paper becoming jammed, not scanning the image straight due to movement of files or order becoming jumbled due to files becoming skewed on exit of scanner. Unfortunately, it seems the maximum number of pages that can be scanned whilst guaranteeing no problems with the process is 30 or so. In the great scheme of things, this is not particularly an issue - it just takes a little longer to scan documents than I would like. Any number of pages above this and the scanner can jam, although this easy to remedy by pulling on a tab which opens the scanner. Scanning can then be resumed.

        Firstly, the scanner is easy to connect to a PC, easy to turn on and easy to scan. No manual set-up was required, just a pressing of the power button. Preparing the scanner is easy too; bringing down the 'flap' at the front for the scanned documents to exit into and extending the tray at the top of the scanner to help guide the documents in. There are also page width guides, which are adjustable. These also aid in guiding documents through the scanner straight.

        The scanner is rather loud - it overshadows the sound of a television at an 'average' noise level and can be heard at the other end of my house if the door to the room I'm in is open. Just a touch quieter would be acceptable to my eyes.

        Finally, the scanning quality is sufficient - words are legible, although they appear slightly blurred and some words which are hand-written may require straining to read.

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      • More +
        08.01.2012 17:12
        2 Comments

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        A short, concise read containing interesting ideas and a well thought out storyline

        This is one of my favourite novels; English literature has always been a passion of mine and Orwell fits very well into this.

        The beauty of this book is the way (as in 1984) that Orwell combines good story writing with history/politics - it works on multiple levels and because of the former trait it does not matter if the second is understood. I first read this book when I was seven (with my mum; might be a little hard for seven year olds to read completely on their own) and thoroughly enjoyed it and, of course, i did not understand the political and historical links.

        The subtext does however add a level of thought for those who are looking for it in their literature. In my opinion, Orwell does this equally as well as Dickens, Chaucer and other members of the so-called Canon of Literature.

        Of course, one may criticise Orwell for using historical events to base his novel around; it could be argued that less thought had to go into the storyline as it was already written, so to speak. I, however, would dispute this - Orwell has to remain close enough to his basis so it is recogniseable in the story and yet far enough away so as Animal Farm can still be considered a 'story'.

        Highly recommended.

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        • More +
          08.01.2012 16:51
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          An above average console with a few drawbacks

          I have owned many consoles so far inc. sega dreamcast, sega megadrive, playstation, playstation 2. The gaming experience of the xbox 360 is significantly better than any of these however. The way the controller feels and the way it is used allows for a great gaming experience.

          The included headset makes playing online far more enjoyable as you can talk to other players freely. I've had great times meeting new people from all over the globe as you work towards similar objectives. Of course, some games compatible with Xbox360 work better with online play than others. Microsoft decided not to include online playability as standard with the xbox360 (unlike the developers of the Playstation 3 who included it for free), opting instead to charge users a subscription to 'Xbox live' on top of the cost of the console and games.

          The high memory storage with elite consoles (in this case 120GB) is useful for those who want to play lots of games, but also use their console as more of an entertainment system; music and videos can also be stored and used on the console.

          Aesthetically, it doesn't look very nice. It's chunky and matt i.e. not sleek and shiny which is what usually looks best with electrical goods (think of slim tv screens). I find it incredible to think they had slimline playstation 2s before this console was released and yet the xbox360 is over 10 times the thickness.

          Having said this, I prefer it to any other console I have, as yet, played on (including PS3 and the Wii). Recommended.

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          • LG M1962D-PC / LCD Monitor / 5 Readings / 5 Ratings
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            08.01.2012 13:22

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            A versatile screen with good picture quality

            I bought this monitor when i bought my new PC. Firstly, the display (coupled with the high processor of the CPU) provides a sublime picture quality which is highly useful when it comes to the other functions of the monitor.

            It has the ability (and all the necessary ports and sockets) to be utilised with a PC, games console and television. You can also plug a USB directly into the back of the monitor; photos (for example) can be accessed this way. This essentially means that you can buy this screen to fulfil the role of three screens; saving a substantial amount of money. It is true that other monitors offer the same, but often these are larger and well in excess of the 19 inches of this monitor; which makes it ideal for smaller rooms or putting on a desk of table-top.

            It is easy to move, both physically (it is lightweight) and the screen itself can be vertically altered simply by pushing it - much the same as other computer screens, but unlike television screens. This monitor has the highest range of movement in this way that I have come across so far.

            I love the look of the monitor, although to begin with, I wasn't convinced by the strip of maroon red running along the bottom of the screen. But when one is trying to find fault with an item and all they can think of is that, you know it must be a good buy!

            Very occasionally I have had the screen turn itself off due to overheating. It is a simple case of playing around with the on/off button on the screen and when the screen ahs cooled sufficiently it will turn on again.

            Expect to pay a few hundred pounds for this product.

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          • Creative Gigaworks T20 / PC Speaker / 5 Readings / 5 Ratings
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            08.01.2012 12:53

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            A value for money product with superior sound quality

            These speakers look modern and hi-tech with the combination of black body and metal dials.

            I have found the sound quality of these speakers to be superior to all others that I have so far tried - they are of television quality or better! This makes the price i paid for them (£50 new) seem very good, when compared to other models on the market which can be hundreds of pounds. They contain a sub-woofer; cutting down on the space it takes up. Often, people say speaker systems which do not have seperate sub-woofers have worse sound, but I have definately not found this.

            Furthermore, I have owned these speakers for several years and the sound quality has not be diminished in any way. In addition to this, I have knocked them off of my desk several times and this has not damaged them in any way other than a few scratches.

            It may seem obvious, but it is good that they use a standard sound input cable i.e. the wire coated in green plastic which is compatible with MP3s, PCs, Laptops etc. I also like the ability to control the volume, treble and bass at will and with ease.

            I have just one criticism. The two speakers are connected by a cable that runs between the back ends of each speaker, this speaker is long enough to put on either side of a computer monitor, but not long enough to put one at either end of my desk - really having to pick holes here!

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          • Samsung Galaxy Ace / Smartphone / 10 Readings / 6 Ratings
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            08.01.2012 01:48

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            Overall, a highly recommended phone for its price, but not of the highest specifications available

            First and foremost, the aesthetics of the phone are very pleasing - sleek (only having a depth of a few centimetres) , shiny and minimalist. The display is of a good size (3.5 by 2 inches) and decent quality which is brilliant when watching videos on the handset; many other phones with video capabilities that I have used do not provide as enjoyable experience as the Galaxy Ace does due to poor quality of image or small screen size.

            Sound quality is almost perfect, usually being very clear. However, I have found that while on speaker phone some words can be lost; although this may because the other person is also using their speaker phone setting. Despite this, the speaker phone quality is better than the majority of phones I have used.

            The style of texting is novel. It is similar to the 'conversation' style texting of other smartphones which is useful as it allows you to keep track of previous comments made between you and a single person without having to trawl back through previous texts from other people.

            The ease of use and navigation of applications is very pleasing. On the whole, it is easy to find everything within the various applications and folders of the phone, although it isn't strikingly obvious about where to find phone details immediately, it only took a few minutes to locate.

            The camera capabilities of the phone are above average, although by no means the best available on the market. The flash capabilities of the phone allow a clear picture to be taken in a dark room at night.

            This phone is significantly cheaper than other smartphones on the market, with the only noticeable difference being less 'apps' available. So far at least, I have not missed these.

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