Category Archives: Apple

Shot on the iPhone Xs Max – My Top 15 Photos from the camera

After a few weeks, below are my favourite and top photos that I have taken with the iPhone Xs Max.

Apple released the iPhone Xs Max a few weeks ago. Smart HDR was one of the new camera features introduced which takes multiple shots and merges the best components of each, to create one amazing shot.

Then there is the new A12 Bionic processor that helps with the computational photography aspects.

The results from the Xs Max have really surprised me. The quality leap forward from previous iPhones in very noticeable. Even from the iPhone X.

The Smart HDR even allows shooting into the sun and producing a decent result.

The Xs Max have larger pixels than the X at 1.4 microns on the main sensor. This helps with low light and detail.

Another aspect of the iPhone Xs Max Camera that I have noticed is it’s speed to take a shot. It’s instant.

Talking of speed, holding the shutter button activates burst mode. Did you know you can take 999 shots in a single burst.

With each burst, I noticed how every shot was in focus and perfectly exposed as well.

Portrait mode has improved too.

Of course, portrait mode can be used in many different scenarios.

With the Xs Max, the telephoto lens can help get some great macros.

And even without the telephoto you can get some great close up pics.

I really love how the camera captures sunsets and sunrises.

In addition, if you edit the photos in the iOS Photos app, there are some lovely filters available.

Video has also been improved on the Xs Max. The iPhone Xs Max is one amazing camera. And so easy to use and reliable.

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iPhone Xs Max Camera Review & Showcase

Imagine taking just your iPhone Xs Max with you, filming video and taking lots of photos.

Then using all the video and photos and being able to create, edit and upload a video without ever using another device.

Well what you are about to watch was produced completely on the iPhone Xs Max, edited, and then uploaded.

For video editing, Luma Fusion app was used.

Headphones are recommended.

iPhone Xs Max First Impressions + Camera

Welcome to my first impressions of the iPhone Xs Max.

Before I get to my first impressions, I came across a little gem of a case that got delivered yesterday by DPD. It’s a silicone style case that’s a copy of Apple’s own silicone case except it has protection on the bottom edge, whereas Apple’s own design is exposed. It also costs £40 less. MoKu Case

The new iPhone Xs Max in theory is just a minor update to last years X. In fact with Apple supporting iPhones up to 5 years old currently, there’s no excuse to upgrade unless you’re on a iPhone 6.

However, the new A12 Bionic processor, iOS 12, larger full screen with gestures, enhanced stereo speakers, stereo video recording and more, the iPhone Xs Max could be something special which I’ll cover off in my full review.

I’ll say this now. The camera kicks ar*e. And is substantially better than last years X in every mode.

Spigen Essential Fast Wireless Charger Review – The safe low cost option! Why pay more?

Welcome to my review of the Spigen Essential Fast Wireless Charger.

I wanted an additional Qi Fast Wireless charger. The issue with many cheap Qi wireless charger is safety. Some make your phone get too hot. Some just don’t work properly. Then there are different speeds of charging wirelessly.

Fortunately, I came across the Spigen Essential Fast Wireless Charger. It cost me £15.99 on Amazon UK . Today it is on sale at £14.99.

The Key Features

– Spigen is an Associate Memeber of Qi Membership (Qi Registration ID: 2093)
– Advanced Safety Features
– Improved Wireless Charing Usability
– Dual Coils for Portrait & Landscape
– Anti-slip mat, portable design and overcharging protection technology all combined
– Compatible with All Qi-Enabled Smartphones incl new iPhones, iPhone 8 / 8 Plus / X, as well as the Samsung Galaxy S8, S8 Plus, S7, S7 Edge, Note 9 etc.
– Angle works with FACE ID

What’s In The Box:
1 x Spigen Essential Fast Wireless Charger (Model: F303W)
1 x USB to Micro USB Cable
1 x User Guide

There are several things I like about this charger. First is the angle. It is great to see the screen and is angled so it works with FACE ID. The charger surface is an anti slip mat. It has safety features to prevent overheating. This is covered off more in my video review below.

Conclusion

I had a number of cheaper wireless chargers which I have no thrown in the bin. The Spigen design is so much better and safer. Highly recommeded.

Buy one from Amazon UK.

UAG Monarch case for Samsung Galaxy Note 9 – Lightweight yet Tough!

The UAG Monarch Series case for the Samsung Galaxy Note 9 Case is designed & precisely engineered to provide a case that meets double the Military Standard for drop & shock protection. The UAG Monarch case is available for other phone models too.

Key Features include –

– Handcrafted, feather-light construction with 5 layers of protection
– Top grain leather and alloy metal hardware
– Soft impact-resistant core & honeycomb traction grip
– Oversized tactile buttons & protective screen surround
– Compatible with Samsung Pay and Samsung Fast Wireless Charging
– Meets 2X Military drop-test standards (MIL STD 810G 516.6)
– 10-Year Limited Warranty

Buy the UAG Monarch case at Amazon UK

iPad Pro 10.5 vs Amazon Fire HD 10 – Is the iPad worth 6 times the price?

The iPad Pro 10.5 costs six times the cost of the Amazon Fire HD 10. Is it worth the extra cost. Let’s take a closer look!

Useful Links

Latest price & more info on Amazon for the iPad Pro
More info and latest price for the Amazon Fire HD 10 with Alexa
Moku Case for Amazon Fire HD 10

Huawei P20 Pro Audio Review vs iPhone X, Samsung Galaxy S9+ & Google Pixel 2 XL

Welcome to my Huawei P20 Pro Audio Review.

In this review I take a look at the audio options and quality of the Huawei P20 Pro covering speakers, bluetooth, wired (dongle) and other options including some external DACs.

Useful Links

Huawei P20 Pro, cases & accessories latest deals on Amazon UK
Latest deals on bluetooth headphones on Amazon UK

Ancient Mystic Trees of Dartmoor National Park – Shot on an iPhone X

Wandering around Dartmoor National Park reveals many glorious sites and depending on the time of day, can completely alter the colours of the landscape.

The trees often have a mystic quality about them. Below are a few photos from the iPhone X. Enjoy.

I really like the natural colours of the trees and growth at ground level.

Switching to HDR black and white created a whole new look.

Sometimes it is just nice to take a pano of the scene.

Even the bridges are pretty old now.

And if you visit Dartmoor National Park, keep a look out for the local security guards 🙂

Shot and Edited on an Apple iPhone X – Snow Drifts & Blizzards – The Beast from the East

My village on Dartmoor National Park was late receiving the snow. It first arrived on 1st March and continued on the 2nd. Last night late into the night, more snow fell. In terms of temperatures, we average minus 15 degrees centigrade at night for a week. (wind chill temp).

However, this morning, its all thawing out. Before we get to the video, here are some photos of my village, Princetown.

The below video was filmed using the default camera app on the iPhone X, then edited using iMovie and Luma Fusion apps on the iPhone.

Enjoy.

Apple HomePod – 2 weeks later – Wood Staining Update & Final Verdict

Welcome back everyone. I thought I would give an update on hows I have been getting on with the Apple HomePod.

I have had my HomePod on a wooden piece of furniture and I decided to have another look to see if any damage had occurred.

Plus my final verdict.

Useful Links

Apple Products on Amazon UK

Apple iPhone X – 3 months later + What’s on my X + What Games work fullscreen on my X + Camera Showcase

So something strange happened. The HomePod has caused me to drift over to an iPhone X. But just how am I getting on with it?

What apps and games are on my X? Which games work full screen on the X and how much has the camera improved since release.

Apple products on Amazon UK

Apple HomePod Review – An Audiophile Dream Speaker

Welcome to my review of the Apple HomePod. I must admit when I first read all about this new speaker from Apple I was skeptical.

First, lets take a look at the key specs.

Key Specifications

– Dimensions:172 mm high x 142 mm wide
– Weight 2.5 kg
– Colour Space Grey or White

Audio Technology

– High-excursion woofer with custom amplifier
– Array of seven horn-loaded tweeters, each with its own custom amplifier
– Six-microphone array for far-field Siri
– Internal low-frequency calibration microphone for automatic bass correction
– Direct and ambient audio beam forming
– Transparent studio-level dynamic processing

Audio Sources

– Apple Music
– iTunes music purchases
– iCloud Music Library with an Apple Music or iTunes Match subscription
– Beats 1
– Apple Podcasts
– AirPlay other content to HomePod from iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, Apple TV and Mac

Audio Formats

– HE-AAC (V1), AAC (16 to 320 Kbps), protected AAC (from iTunes Store), MP3 (16 to 320 Kbps), MP3 VBR, Apple Lossless, AIFF, WAV and FLAC

Touch Surface

– Tap or hold + or – for volume up/down
– Touch and hold for Siri
– Tap to play/pause music or Siri
– Double-tap to skip
– Triple-tap to skip back

So as I mentioned, I was skeptical to say the least. So unboxing the HomePod is like any other Apple product. A wonderful experience including the setup. The other thing I noticed is how damn heavy the HomePod was for its size.

Apple make technology simple at times, and setting this up was a breeze. See video below. When the HomePod powers on, you hear a thud. That is the first time you realise this little speaker is capable of delivering some deep bass.

If you read the specification above, there are lots of fancy words used. However, what matters is how good does it sound and does Siri actually work. I am astonished at how good the sound is for such a small speaker. Even listening at low volumes, it is a treat. Jazz is delightful. The room is filled with wonderful vocals and instruments. In fact, I tried lots of different genres and all were great. Sometimes, the mids got lost, but honestly you cannot go wrong with this. Siri works well and pretty quickly too.

I don’t have an Apple Music subscription, but as a back up, I do have iTunes Match subscription on top of my Google Play Music. This means all my 10,000 songs can be accessed instantly. Using Airplay, I can listen to any other music source from my iPad. I can even ask Siri to move to the next track on my iPad.

Of course, the HomePod nows works with HomeKit. Now lets take a look at the video review.

Video Review

Conclusion

If you have an Apple TV, iPad or iPhone then this is for you! If you also have an Apple TV music or iTunes Match subscription then this is a no brainer. The HomePod is so much better than I ever thought. Amazing!

Useful Links

Apple HomePod on Apple UK Store

Sennheiser HD 579 Headphone Review vs Sennheiser HD 598

Welcome to my review of the Sennheiser HD 579 headphones with a comparison to the Sennheiser HD 598.

The HD 579 is part of the new HD 500 Series. The HD 579 is a headphone that provides premium performance and great value. They are powered by Sennheiser proprietary transducer technology and feature the ‘Ergonomic Acoustic Refinement’ design.

Using the HD 579 was a great experience. For a fraction of the price compared to high end audiophile headphones, The HD 579 was approaching high end audiophile sound reproduction. The open back, around ear headphone design delivers a lovely natural tonal balance with a wide soundstage and spatial performance. Comfort is one of the best with proper large ear cups fitted with plush velour ear cushions. Treble and mid range is detailed and not tiring. Speed and timing is excellent with a decent amount of bass.

As these are open back headphones, they let all the music leak from them and at the same time you can hear everything going on in the outside world. Sennheiser do have a range of closed back and noise cancelling headphones for those days when you need no disturbances! So for commuting, these are not the headphones to use. At home and in quiet environments they are ideal. They are also easy to drive. Tested with the Google Pixel 2 XL using the USB C dongle and also with the LG V30+. The pairing with the LG V30+ was exceptional.

So how do these compare with the older HD 598. They are pretty much identical. The HD 598 are marginally easier to drive and have a slightly wider frequency range. In real life its hard to tell them apart. I felt the bass on the HD 579 was marginally better.

Conclusion

The Sennheiser HD 579 headphones are highly recommended and represent great value for money.

Useful Links

Sennheiser headphone info and deals on Amazon UK

Newquay Beach – Shot on the iPhone X

I have taken a several shots on the iPhone X, but these photos taken of Newquay beach really highlight just how great the camera performs.

In all 3 of the shots just look at the colour, depth and overall tonality. The seagulls were captured perfectly too.

The middle photo really emphasises just how much of a difference the zoom lens has become and how optical image stabilisation enhances 2 x zoom photos.

I must admit I was pretty blown away by these images. I have shot this scene on many phones and by far these from the iPhone X are simply the best and outstanding in my view.

iPhone X vs Pixel 2 – Camera Comparison Part 2

Over the weekend I published two posts. A low light camera comparisons between the iPhone X and Pixel 2, and some first shots from the iPhone X. 

Now I’m back with some more camera shots from both shots, from outdoor, indoor and some more low light shots. The differences are stark at times. All on auto. 

In all these shots it’s the iPhone X first, then the Pixel 2. So which is better in your eyes ?



So perfect sunny conditions with this shot. iPhone X is the first shot. Both look great but do you have a favourite. 



In this indoor shot the Pixel 2 on the bottom has more detail. Look at the drinks fridge bottom right. But do you agree?



Now into night shots where the differences between the phones becomes more obvious. Again Pixel 2 is the bottom shot, iPhone X on top. 



Again both phones using a different exposure with the Pixel 2 going for a higher ISO. The iPhone X used a 1/4 second shutter speed. But which is better. Pixel bottom. iPhone X on top. 

So who is your winner and why? 

Some other points to note. The Pixel 2 has Bluetooth LDAC, APT-X and APT-X audio codecs and therefore sound better with headphones. Both have stereo speakers. The iPhone X sounds better than the Pixel 2 but Pixel 2 XL sounds better than the iPhone X. Screens. Lol. iPhone X has a better screen than both Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL.