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After being with my current phone supplier for many years now on pay as you go, I thought I would have a phone on contract and checked out three.co.uk to look at their offers. I seen a great samsung galaxy ace with a deal to suit me and a good price, so I applied online...wish I hadnt had bothered! Firstly, the website wouldn't move me onto the next screen and then errors kept appearing once I had entered my details. Eventually, I managed to get to the final screen and submit my direct debit instructions and my details to them and then had the message saying I would receive an email about my order. Didnt seem any problems so far and expected my phone to arrive 2 days later. Email came not long after I ordered, and it said that they had accepted my order and would contact me if they needed to speak to me about delivery of phone. Following day, I had another email asking me to phone them up to give them a few more details before my phone could be sent out. When I rang, I gave my reference number to the guy on the phone, who was very rude as soon as he answered the phone, and told him about the email I had received. He couldnt understand why I had that email and then asked me if I still wanted the phone, to which I said I did. He then said I had to pay £100 towards the phone as a deposit. I told him there was nothing about this on the website and why wasnt I told sooner instead of thinking I was accepted for the phone contract. He couldnt give me a straight answer and said maybe I have bad credit, which is quite funny since I am not in debt and dont owe anyone anything. I told him I would not be paying £100, though he did tell me it was returnable after a few months. I politely told him "no thanks!" and that I would be taking my custom elsewhere. I had always heard bad things about three so now I have found out for myself. Not a good company to deal with!
As a DJ, I used to use vinyl for my mixes and then started mixing with CD's so thought I would no longer have any use for my 12"'s and kept them in the garage for many years. I had a lot of rare 12" promos / imports too and always wondered if I would ever hear them again since getting rid of my twin turntables. So, earlier this year I bought a cheap, £40 turntable from my local shopping centre and the sound quality was awful so I took it back and got a refund. Then, whilst browsing on ebay, I came across this item for £35.99 (a few other sellers were selling it for over £60!), made by Lenco...a make I had never heard of in my life. But I thought I would chance it and see what it was like. I was not dissapointed. This was well worth the money! To put it simply, this comes with a USB 2.0 connection and it has 2 playback speeds so it will let you convert music from 45 RPM vinyls and the old 33 RPM LP'S onto your pc. Its very lightweight and has a mini turntable which is semi-automatic. It also has automatic return when it comes to the end of a record, and automatic power-off. Its quite funny seeing the old needle in the arm of the player (takes me back a bit to a record player I had when I was about 5!). The good thing about this is that it has a pre-amplifier included so you can use the AUX connection, which is what I did many times. It also comes with software (Audacity) which is fairly easy to use (once you have used it once). Now the basics - I didnt use the manual an awful lot with this - I found it easier to connect the turntable to the USB port of my PC and then I installed the Audacity software onto my pc then simply followed the instructions on the screen. Also, when the main screen loads up, make sure that it states your correct sound card in the drop down menu at the top of the page. Easy! Basically, to record vinyl, you just play the record on the turntable and then in Audacity, you press the 'record' button when you're ready to start recording. During this process, you will see the level meters blinking to let you know that its recording. Whenever you want to stop the recording, you just click on the 'stop' button. Then, click on 'play' to play your recording back. Along with these, theres also a fair few tools you can use too - amongst them are things like selecting the range of audio you want to edit/listen to, change the volume over time, modify individual samples, Zooming in/out, slide tracks left or right, access all of these tools at once depending on the location of the mouse and the keys you are holding down, audio control buttons and a loop button so you can keep playing the selection over and over (fun!). It also comes with a little, plastic adaptor for playing 45RPM records (like the old jukebox ones with the middle missing!). The sound quality is not quite excellent, although when you playback your songs, you can tell that they are recorded from vinyl due to the slight scratching noises, but then again, what can you expect from old records? I am very satisfied with this and it gives me the chance to hear all my old vinyls again and even transfer them from my computer to my i-pod to listen to in the car. Before I forget, the Audactiy software works with windows 7 and above.
Having had holidays at Butlins for the past several years, I do actually quite enjoy it there, although the main drawback is the cost of everything on site - expensive!! We very rarely stay there for a week, just usually for the long weekends, mainly because it becomes very expensive. We just recently came back from there a few weeks ago and it wasnt as good as last year and I made a point of emailing them when I came back to tell them all the good and bad points we experienced during our holiday. Firstly, the entertainment has gone down - 2 acts from Britains Got Talent that were on stage about 15 mins each (if that!) and some bloke called Danyl Johnson from X-Factor who was on for nearly an hour but me and my friend were not keen on him at all. Not much applause for him! Theres lots of shows with the Redcoats, in fact, far too many!! Gets a bit tired! Also, there was yet another ABBA singalong and some appalling tribute acts - most notably, The Beatles - truly awful and an insult! Years ago when I worked there, there were great acts there like comedians Dave Lee and Duggie Brown. There was also a great show called West End Showstoppers with comedienne Pauline Daniels with songs from musicals and Pauline was singing and telling jokes inbetween. This was on for a couple of hours and was excellent and most popular. Also remember The Nolans there too and many tv celebrities appearing. The bars in both centre stage and reds are overly priced - more expensive than our clubs prices in our major city centre (Birmingham) and you seem to be waiting ages to get served and on occasion, the bar staff get the prices wrong, not good. Also, lots of children running around near the bar area where people were carrying glasses of drinks. Though, the one night, the redcoat who was DJ'ing, told the children not to sit on the stage because of health and safety reasons, but never says anything about the bar area. An accident waiting to happen! The funfair is not open as much as it should be and they need to invest in a few more rides there as theres nothing new there. There is a lot more entertainment for children there, although me and my friend did Crazy Golf and the laser quest which I had never done before (I won!) and we even hired the bikes out to go round the site, which was most enjoyable. The accommodation - we always go silver which isnt too bad, nice and clean although we had no hot water and when I informed customer services, they were already aware of it and that they were goin to be putting a new water heater in there but it wouldnt be sorted until some days later - no good for us! Then again, we didnt expect the room to be like a hotel as we never spend much time in there anyway, but some hot water would have been nice! We booked up about 4 days before we were due to go and managed to get it for £102 each with food court dining plan. The food - we were in the food court for our meals and was surprised that its all self-service now, although there are staff on hand if you need any assistance. On our first night, I had hot dog and chips although the roll was dry and awful and the chips were chewy and werent even warm. I wasnt impressed with the unattended children running around the area when people are carrying hot soup, in fact, I did see a young girl run into an elderly lady carrying a bowl of hot custard and sponge and this smashed on the floor near to the girl. Also seen children coughing into food and one morning, a lad had his hand in the cereal to see if it was frosties or cornflakes and also a girl was helping herself to curry with half of her hair draping into it! No wonder why theres always reports of people getting food poisoning here! The food and hygiene definitely needs to improve. There are also a lot of arcade machines and them toy grabber machines dotted around the place, so could be quite expensive if you are addicted to these. The shops on site are quite expensive too although you might see a few offers/promotions around. Though I must say, their customer service is excellent and I cannot fault that at all. In fact, after complaining recently, I had a lovely 2-page letter from them apologising and saying they will sort a lot of things out. So, come on Butlins, you can do it!!
After having 3 unreliable cars, I had the chance to buy a 3-door renault clio biarritz 1998 from a friend of one of my relatives for £500. I done my research on it first before buying it and I must say, in the 6 months I have had it, I have not been dissapointed and I love it! The Clio is Renaults best selling model and they say that their cars are not just uniquely interesting cars, they are uniquely safe ones. They need to be with my driving! It is so reliable and starts first time everyday which is excellent for me because of my job and I also love to travel. During the last 6 weeks, I have drove it over 140 miles to Minehead and last week, I travelled over 200 miles up North and back and felt so comfortable and at ease in it - something I could never do in my last car. It has some excellent features which I've never had in my previous cars. It has remote door locking and an engine immobiliser which means it will not start if left for 30 seconds, unless you use the remote key fob and lock/unlock the doors again. Brilliant! It also has a little alarm sounding device which sounds if Ive left the lights on and leave the car (habit of mine!). The petrol light comes on when I'm low on petrol and gives me just about 20 miles before it will run out. Excellent! The seats are comfortable and the heating doesnt take long to heat up once I start the car. Its also excellent on petrol which is a bonus considering the price of fuel these days. Its a 1.2 so does really well and when I travelled just over 200 miles on the motorway, I had put in £25 to get it to half a tank of petrol and it used just half of that - about £12.50! Now a few little issues - the wing mirrors are a little too big so if I'm parked near a busy road, I have to bend them in just in case someone knocks into them, which happened once as someone drove too near to the drivers door. Also, the boot has to be banged right down to make sure it shuts as it came open when I was driving, not long after buying the car. Embarrassing! And one final problem which I had heard about - sometimes, a part of the sunroof can leak in heavy rain and it can run into the remote sensor which is above the rear view mirror in the roof of the car. So far (touch wood!), mine hasnt, even though Its been out in really heavy rain on a number of occasions. The engine doesnt sound bad at all; sounds just right but not exactly quiet but I can't grumble for a car thats 13 years old! It just runs so smoothly! So, to sum this up - a great, safe, reliable car, cheap on petrol, economical and enjoyable to drive! Yes, I love it!!!!
I bought this DVD recorder a few weeks ago because I love my electronics and my DVDs, so decided to upgrade to a better DVD recorder. I was undecisive at the time as to which one to buy and was looking around my local Currys store and came across this Panasonic Recorder. I have always loved Panasonic makes and thought I couldn't go wrong with this one so when I got home, I managed to order one online from Amazon for just under £300 and it was over £100 cheaper than Currys. Now, I am not the brightest tool in the box when it comes to electronics and I am still finding new things out with this to use all the features that it has. Despite me trying to understand the user instruction booklet, I have still managed to find a lot of things out for myself. I have watched quite a few blu-rays on this and the picture quality is excellent and looks and sounds good on my 32" television and so I am very pleased with it, but it does have a few little problems, like the electronic programme guide is not too bad although the channel I am watching, vanishes when I am viewing the guide which is a bit of a dissapointment as well as the adverts that appear on the screen. It also doesnt have a disc tray open/close button on the remote. But these are things that don't really bother me; I have just got used to that. When I first recorded onto the hard disk drive, I thought the broadcast quality was not going to be excellent but I was surprised because it came out perfect and you are also able to easily compress it if you want to record it onto a DVD/blue-ray. I also thought this was going to be slow but it transferred all what I wanted really quickly, in fact, I had a film which lasted nearly 2 hours and it took just less than 10 minutes! I was very impressed! Ive also noticed that if you watch TV through the box, the picture quality is splendid and even better when I watch the HD channels. I have also just found out how to copy my HD films from my old Sony camcorder onto the hard drive and then copy them to DVD. It can record in HD and SD but so far, I have only recorded in HD. It has twin tuners so it can record two programmes at the same time which I have done a few times and also when I use the internet functions, the screen goes blank for a few seconds until the icons appear on the screen with the links to the webpages. In my opinion, it is hard to understand at first, but once you get the hang of it, its quite simple and I have no regrets buying it.
I recently bought this from Amazon as I have been a massive fan of The Avengers and The New Avengers and I must say, although this wasn't as popular as the original Avengers series, its still a cult classic nevertheless. During the 1960's, John Steed, played by Patrick Macnee, featured in the original Avengers along with a few beauties as his sidekicks along the way such as Cathy Gale (Honor Blackman), Emma Peel (Diana Rigg) and Tara King (Linda Thorson). Put the clock forward to 1976 and he returns with the beautiful Joanna Lumley (sporting a bowlhead hair cut!) as high-kicking, ex ballet dancer, Purdey. They are joined by tough guy and trained martial arts expert, Mike Gambit (the late Gareth Hunt) and the three of them are fighting for the good of the Country. Two series were made from 1976-1977 with a total of 26 episodes of (sometimes) unbelievable plots and superb fighting action, not to mention the high-speed car chases and camp clothes! The chemistry between Purdey and Mike Gambit was just spot-on and very tongue-in-cheek and in my opinion, Purdey was the best assistant John Steed had. There were some really good episodes made, especially in the first series and my favourites were Last Of The Cybernauts...? which featured the return of the killer robots from the original Avengers series, and Target featuring Keith Barron and Deep Roy, which involved ministry agents apparently dying of natural causes after taking part on a training range. During the second series, a lot of the episodes were filmed in Canada and, I feel, these were not so good as the earlier ones, although I did enjoy the episode 'Complex' where Purdey was trapped in a large, computer- controlled, sky scraper building which had a mind of its own. Overall, this DVD collection is very watchable and action-packed and was well worth my money and would recommend it to anyone who was a fan of The Avengers series.