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T-Mobile finally rolling out Cupcake for G1 – first impressions

May 29th, 2009 by James in Phone Reviews

Today, I had a little surprise waiting for me when I turned on my T-Mobile G1 phone. Cupcake, vs. 1.5 of the Android firmware, had arrived and was installing! I couldn’t wait to try out the new features including the Android virtual keyboard, the automatic orientation feature and the new camcorder application.

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Jobo PhotoGPS reviewed

January 21st, 2009 by Marc in Photography

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We recently looked at (and liked) a GPS solution for the digital photographer in the form of the GiSTEQ PhotoTrackrPro. This time we have a slightly different approach to the problem of geo-locating photos in the form of the PhotoGPS from German company Jobo AG.

Jobo have been making photographic accessories for a while but this is their first attempt at a GPS unit. It has a uniquely different approach to the competition that mark this as being tool geared towards the more serious photographer.

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What the Google Phone giveth, it also takes away – the G1 review

December 17th, 2008 by James in A/V Devices, Miscellaneous Reviews, Phone Reviews

When I first got the Google Phone (the G1 through T-Mobile) I was rather impressed with it. Fitting in the palm of my hand, it made me think that if the iPhone was “Mac,” then the G1 is definitely PC. A little wider, a tad boxier. Clunky by comparison, but at first glance, it’s just as effective as a phone and even having some advantages over the sleeker iPhone. But as you use it, the picture begins to change.

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Adobe Creative Suite Master Collection CS4

December 9th, 2008 by James in Miscellaneous Reviews

There’s a point in software development where fewer new features or innovations arrive and developers begin to concentrate on tweaking, thereby making it more efficient, faster, and secure. There are no longer any real “fins” to add, and so software engineers dive under the hood and begin to tweak for performance. Such is the case with the plethora of software known as the Adobe Creative Suite Master Collection CS4. Make no mistake; the ACSMC CS4 is an amazing collection of software. And if creative types are looking to invest in a new suite for their creative needs, CS4 is certainly one to consider when cleaning out the software budget for the year.

But will CS3 users find it difficult to justify upgrading to the new collection? Is there enough new performance upgrades to justify the hefty price tag? In today’s economy, I have a hunch that the answer will be to wait. There’s simply not enough WOW there for experienced users unless they are so into performance tweaking that they want to drop a few grand to get better and more seamless integration.

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GiSTEQ PhotoTrackr CD111

November 26th, 2008 by Marc in Photography

PhotoTrackr_LowRes I’ve spent a few weeks with the GiSTEQ PhotoTrackr Pro – a GPS datalogger that’s aimed at the digital photographer. The idea is to use a GPS receiver to embed location information in photographs which can then be displayed on a map showing where they were taken. It’s not a new concept but it usually involves a certain amount of effort to match the pieces of the puzzle together and things only get trickier when you are using the RAW files produced by modern digital SLRs.

The PhotoTrackr claims to solve both of these problems by being easy to use and supporting a wide range of cameras – follow the jump to see how I got on.

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ASUS AiGuru S1 – The new videophone from Skype

November 17th, 2008 by Al in Phone Reviews


Skype in association with ASUS have jost released the first Skype certified videophone, the ASUS AiGuru SV1 and we’ve got our hands on one of the first units.

Functionality
The ASUS AiGuru SV1 offers full Skype video conferencing facilities with the need of a PC. You can use it for Skype-to-Skype video and voice calls (both free) and as with regular Skype you can call regular landlines and mobiles at discounted rates. You may also use it to make and receive conference calls (3 or more people), however in this mode there will be no video and purely voice.

For me the main use will be when I’m travelling abroad, I’ll leave the videophone at home and be able to have videophone conversations with my family from my laptop, with the only cost being the WiFi connection in the hotel, sweet!

Installation
Installing the AiGuru was a straightforward process. You’ll need an existing broadband Internet connection and you can either connect the videophone via the supplied network cable or wirelessly. The wireless connection is the most convenient but you’ll need to enter any WEP or WPA key via the cursor keys and onscreen keyboard which is a bit fiddly. I’ve noticed it seems to forget the WEP key on occassion and you need to re-enter it, hopefully this will be fixed in a software update.

You can also tweak the display settings (brightness, hue, saturation, etc.) but I found the picture and video quality to be absolutely fine straight out of the box.

Portabilty
You can run the AiGuru straight from the mains, however it does come with a re-chargable battery so you can move it around. The screen housing is adjustable and is both comfortable with placed on a desk or your lap.

Conclusion
I’ve found the Skype videophone to be a great piece of kit and will certainly make good use of it. It is on the heavy side but I don’t think it’s meant to be used on the move. You can buy the ASUS AiGuru SV1 from the official Skype Shop for £219.95

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Canon 5d Mk II an expensive camera that puts it all on the screen

November 2nd, 2008 by James in A/V Devices, Photography

Up front, you need to know that the Canon 5D Mk II is expensive. VERY expensive. Professional expensive. At nearly $3,000 for just the body, it’s not even an early adapter camera and is more for the wedding photographer or professional who’s looking to push the boundaries of their artistic skills. But for the money, photographers will find that the 5D Mk. II puts “every dime on the screen” and then some.

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Kodak ESP 5 Review

November 2nd, 2008 by James in Miscellaneous Reviews, Photography, printers

For those with tight desk space in the office, often times an all in one printer solution is a practical answer to the problem. All in ones have been around for over a decade and usually the bad wrap was that if one of the features failed, you couldn’t use the entire unit. So, if the scanner failed, for instance, then the printer was useless to you as well. Luckily, as the all in one printer design matured, much of that main problem has been engineered away. The results are that all in one printers are good solutions that are very affordable, offer nominal performance, and save a ton of space. They’re not perfect, mind you, but for the price it’s hard to argue a demand for perfection. Just performance. This is could have been true with the Kodak ESP 5 All in One printer, if it had been built a little more robustly.

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