Category Archives: Reviews

Huawei P40 Pro REVIEW – beautiful hardware!

Welcome to my review of the Huawei P40 Pro. The P40 Pro retails for £899.

Key Features

– The HUAWEI P40 Pro 5G comes with the new HUAWEI AppGallery and is not compatible with Google Play Store and Services.
– Leica Quad Camera: 50 MP Ultra Vision Sensor (1/1.28 Inch Ultra Vision Sensor, RYYB colour filter array, Octa PD Autofocus), 40 MP Ultra Wide Cine Camera, 12 MP Telephoto Cameras, 3D Depth Sensing Camera
12 MP Telephoto Camera: 5x Optical Zoom, 10x Hybrid Zoom, 50x Max Zoom.
– Wi-Fi 6 Plus: Using Dynamic Narrow Bandwidth technology, the Wi-Fi 6 Plus enabled phone penetrates more walls and floors. Supporting 160 MHz bandwidth, it brings out optimal speed reaching up to 2.4 Gbps
– 5G and Outstanding Performance: Embrace the ultra-fast speed with the world’s first integrated 5G SoC, Kirin 990 5G chipset. Thanks to the 7nm+ EUV technology and innovative CPU architectures.
– Fast Charging Battery: 4200 mAh battery and the 40 W HUAWEI SuperCharge and 27 W Wireless HUAWEI SuperCharge.
– Quad-curve Overflow Display, IP68: The Quad-Curve Overflow Display is innovated to dissolve the barriers of vision and imagination on every edge. Plus with the 90 Hz refresh rate, you can enjoy an immersive view over the entire fluid screen
– Splash, Water and Dust Resistant is IP68. Water and dust-proofing are not permanent, and resistance may decrease as a result of normal wear over time. Do not charge the phone when it is wet or in moist environments
– 8gb ram, 256gb storage

My review includes –

– Camera
– Camera Tricks
– Walkthrough
– Apps & Google

Video Review

Conclusion

The P40 Pro 5G is a stunning piece of hardware. The lack of Google is a real shame, but the new Petal Search app from Huawei makes finding your favourite apps a lot easier.

Useful Links

Huawei P40 Pro 5G on Amazon UK

Sony ZV-1 Real User Review – Sony’s new vlogging camera

Welcome to my review of the new Sony ZV-1 vlogging camera which comes with a 1 inch Sony sensor. It retails for £699.

Key Features

– The ZV-1 is designed for vlogging, featuring a vari-angle LCD screen, recording lamp for selfie-shooting, secure grip and easy operation.
– A premium camera, with Soft Skin Effect, natural skin tones and optimised brightness for faces.
– Record high sound quality – a directional 3-capsule mic and wind shield is supplied with this camera.
– Featuring Product Showcase Setting for perfect product review videos and Bokeh Switch for easy background blur control.
– Sony’s innovative Real-time Eye AF technology locks on and tracks people’s eyes, even when shooting 4K movies.

Video Review

Conclusion

Whilst not 100% perfect, it is likely the best video solution available. Highly recommended.

Useful Links

Sony ZV-1 on Amazon UK
Sony GP-VPT2BT grip on Amazon UK

Anker Soundcore Liberty 2 Pro True Wireless Earphones Review – Redefining Bass

Welcome to my review of the Anker Soundcore Liberty 2 Pro True Wireless earphones. These has a recommended retail price of £139.99, although if you use the link at the bottom, these are currently available for £119.99.

Key Features

– Astria Coaxial Acoustic Architecture: A state-of-the-art design which integrates a customised Knowles balanced armature and an 11mm dynamic driver into a single body. Aligned direct-to-ear, Astria completely eliminates interference while producing harmonised treble and bass for jaw-dropping sound.
– In-Ear Studio Performance: Liberty 2 Pro is recommended by 10 Grammy Award winning producers. Sound is delivered at stadium-scale with impeccable depth and nuance.
– HearID Custom Sound: To ensure everyone gets a perfect listening experience, HearID intelligently analyses your unique hearing profile and creates a tailor-made sound setup just for your ears. Or take complete control of the sound with an adjustable EQ or 22 preset sound profiles.
– 32-Hour Playtime: Get 8 hours from a single charge and then another 4 full recharges from the charging case. The charging case recharges via fast-charge USB-C or wireless charging, and provides the earbuds with 2 hours of listening from a 10-minute charge.
– Quad-Microphone Calls: With 4 microphones and cVc 8.0 noise reduction, your voice is isolated and transmitted in high-clarity for a seamless hands-free experience.

Time Index for Video Review

0:00s Intro
0:54s What’s in The Box
2:08s Close-up on the Earphones
3:46s Companion App
5:01s Call Quality
6:16s Connectivity
6:37s Sound Quality
9:44s Latency
9:54s Conclusion

Video Review

Conclusion

One of the most dramatic wireless earphones I have heard for bass impact without ruining the treble and midrange. Highly recommended.

Useful Links

Latest pricing on the Anker Soundcore Liberty 2 Pro on Amazon

Microsoft Surface 2 Headphones review vs Razer Opus

Welcome to my review of the new Microsoft Surface 2 Headphones versus the Razer Opus Headphones. The Surface 2 retail for £239 and the Razer Opus £199.

The video below provides a detailed look at both. The time index is as follows –

0:00s Intro
0:45s Hard cases comparisons
1:19s Headphones folding comparison
1:48s In the case
3:10s Headphone design differences
4:36s Headphone functions & differences
9:42s Sound quality
13:48s Companion apps
16:12s Conclusion

Video Review

Useful Links

Razer Opus headphones on Amazon
Microsoft Surface 2 Headphones

HiFiMan Deva Headphones Review – Bluetooth, Wired or USB

Welcome to my review of the HiFiMan Deva. The headphones retail for £299.

The HiFiMan Deva are a terrific value headphone. Featuring HiFiMan’s legendary planar magnetic drivers, with a 3.5mm balanced cable as the traditional way of connecting these to your amp or portable music player.

Then there is the bluetooth “Bluemini” module that clips on to the Deva headphones that enables connection over bluetooth with all the Hi-Res bluetooth codecs from APT-X HD and LDAC. If that wasn’t enough, you can use the BlueMini and connect via USB. To find out more of my thoughts on the HiFiMan Deva watch my video review below.

Video Review

Conclusion

A versatile headphone with super sounds. 3 different ways to connect to your music is a winner.

Useful Links

HiFiMan on Amazon

Fiio K5 Pro – Desktop Amp/DAC Review

Welcome to my review of the Fiio K5 Pro which retails for £149.

The Key Features

– High-performance DAC AK4493
– Gain control switch with gain levels: Low 0dB, Medium +6dB and High +10dB
– USB DAC: 768K/32Bit and native DSD decoding | USB decoding chip: XMOS XUF208
– Variety of inputs: Coaxial / Optical / RCA line-in
– Variety of outputs: 6.35mm (1/4 in.) headphone out / RCA line-out
– Extremely powerful headphone amplification for a total power output of up to 1.5 W under a 32Ω load, and up to 20Vpp at 300Ω

Video Review

Conclusion

A fantastic value desktop amp. Dynamic, punch with great clarity that can drive nearly all headphones available.

Useful Links

Fiio K5 Pro on Amazon

Xiaomi Mi 10 Pro Review (Global)

Welcome to my review of the Xiaomi Mi 10 Pro (Global).

Key Features/Specs

-Qualcomm® 865, 7 nm Process Technology
-GPU: Adreno™ 650 GPU
-AIE: 5th generation AIE processor
– RAM: 8GB ,LPDDR5 memory
– ROM: 256GB
– UFS 3.0 flash storage
– 108MP ultra-clear primary sensor – 1/1.33”, 0.8μm 4-in-1 to 1.6μm, f/1.69, aperture, OIS, 8P lens
– 8MP 10x hybrid zoom lens
– 10x hybrid zoom, OIS, f/2.0 aperture,1.0μm pixel size
– 12MP Portrait lens
– 2x optical zoom, 1.4μm large pixel size 2PD autofocus, f/2.0 aperture
– 20mp front camera

20MP ultra wide-angle

Up to 117° FoV, f/2.2 aperture

Video Review

Conclusion

An incredible phone with lots of features.

Useful Links

Xiaomi Mi 10 range on Amazon UK

HiFiMan Jade II Electrostatic Headphones Review

Welcome to my review of the HiFiMan Jade 2 Electrostatic headphones and amp combo. The combined retail price of the headphones and amp are $2,500, but these can be bought separately.

Key Features/Specifications

– Electrostatic speed and details that reach each from the deepest lows all the way to 90KHz
– Nanotech Driver that is less than 0.001mm
– Nano Particle thick dust cover for near perfect sound transmission
– Open-Back Design for an expanded, more intimately enveloping sound stage with natural sonics that place the listener in the best seat in the house.
– Frequency Response : 7Hz-90kHz
– Bias Voltage : 550V-650V
– Weight : 365g (12.9oz)
Amplifier :
– Weight : 6.5kg (14.3lb)

Music tracks used for this review along with my thoughts.

Florian Christel, Encore– classical genre, great timbre. Piano feels as the keys being pressed in front of you , timing is fast & energetic

Ola Gjeilo , Luminous Night – voices are superb with a beautiful tone.

Bach Sonata for Viola da Gamba & Harpsichord No. 3 in G Minor – loved the entire presentation and instrument separation.

Bee Gees, Heart like Mine , vocals are heavenly, picked up tone of the artists so well.

Sarah McLachlan, Ice – her voice & guitar. again picks up her lovely tone and guitar So moving.

Jewel, Enter from the East – pick up the nuances in the tracks. Little details. I could listen to this track so many times.

Bruce Springsteen, Paradise – the husky vocals/voice really well produced.

Lucinda Williams , You can’t rule me – feels like the amp could do with more power, bit harsh on the vocals.

Dua Lipa , Hallucinate, good mid bass, lacking sub bass.

Video Review

Conclusion

Expressive, delightful sounding electrostatic headphones which would benefit from an even more powerful electrostatic amp.

Useful Links

Jade 2/Amp Combo on Amazon
HiFiMan Website

Xiaomi Mi 10 Pro 5G – First Written Thoughts vs OnePlus 8 Pro

If you have been following me on twitter @gavinsgadgets you will have seen a selection of photos I have shared from the OnePlus 8 Pro. The other day, my Xiaomi Mi 10 Pro 5G arrived yesterday early evening, so below are my first thoughts as they occurred using the phone. I have also shared comparison shots between these two phones on twitter.

I opted for the Alpine White finish which is absolutely stunning. So it was wow, love the hardware. Setting up was fairly straight forward. Fast forward a few hours.

I looked at the first few photos that I had snapped and it looked like that the OnePlus 8 Pro was taking better photos, but I knew that I needed to spend some time with the mi 10 pro, as the focus distance is different due to the 108mp sensor vs 48mp on the oneplus. Zoom quality is also better on the mi 10 pro. I am also only on the first global firmware, there is another due soon, and I know the chinese version of the mi 10 pro has had a lot of fixes already. Xiaomi isnt the fastest for updates so time will tell as to how quickly the official global version gets updated.

The OnePlus 8 Pro macro shots are incredible, this is achieved using the 48mp ultra wide lens. There isn’t a single phone I have used that can take better macro shots. Whilst the Mi 10 Pro has a macro mode, it’s not an even close comparison.

A few more hours later. Been using the Mi 10 Pro a bit more last night, and I’m gonna swap my main sim into it tomorrow. It does a number of things better than the Oneplus 8 Pro. Pulled off some bananas good photos too.

The mi 10 pro has a 108mp main sensor that has takes 4 pixels to create one high quality pixel, so the end resolution is 27mp. You can shoot at 108mp as well. Above is my dog George, its a huge crop, but there is so much detail on every photo. This was at 27mp. At 108mp you can crop until you drop!

So last night I finished setting the phone app, installing all my apps. Everything works fine except android auto. When I select an app from the car interface, it doesnt load. If I start the music on the app on my phone, then it shows on the car display. I haven’t had any spare time today to investigate why this is happening.

Back to today. I will say the following. The photo file sizes are huge on the Mi 10 Pro. To avoid the large files, I’ve toggled the setting to save as HEIF which provides better quality shots and better quality data for editing them after as well. As heif files the photo size is a lot smaller. Downside. Google Photos cannot upload heic/heif from the phone. The Mi 10 Pro gallery app does convert to jpg on sharing, but there’s a bug where it only exports 4 at a time. My current solution is import into adobe lightroom mobile app, and re export straight out as jpg.

I have noticed the photos on the Mi 10 Pro come out looking natural with excellent colours. Having an ultra wide, normal, 2 x optical and 5 x optical zoom lens is great for flexibility.

Above is with main lens.

Above is 2 x optical zoom.

And finally above is the 5 x zoom shot.

So far so good. I forgot to mention the Mi 10 Pro has an infra red blaster on it, so I can control my TV! It also has some of the best stereo speakers and an incredible high quality audio system.

The OnePlus 8 Pro does not work currently with an external mic. I plugged in my Shure MV88+ and not only did the Mi 10 Pro recognise it, it brought up a wealth of options to fine tune the microphone audio.

Anyway, look at for more thoughts and videos on my YouTube Channel .

iFi Audio iSilencer+ v2 review

Welcome to my review of the iFi Audio iSilencer+ that retails for £49.Main features / key specifications– Active Noise Cancellation creates an equal but opposite signal to cancel background noise in the USB audio stream to enhance your audio.
– Reduces jitter and packet errors to provide clear, more dynamic sound. Music will seem clearer, more transparent and bass will be improved.
– Noise, RFI and EMI all reduced
– Re-balance the USB signal for less distortion and better audio.
– Simply plug directly into the USB port of your computer, compatible with high speed USB 3.0 and USB 2.0 devices
– The iSilencer+ is an upgrade from the iSilencer3.0, with upgraded components, better sonic improvement, and comes in 3 versions – USB A to USB A, USB C to USB A, and USB C to USB C.
– In addition to improving the audio quality, the USB C to A iSilencer+ can be used as a converter adaptor.
– Military grade printed circuit with audiophile components.
– Weight 7g.
– Dimensions 50 x 20 x 9mm.The iFi Audio Silencer+ is a clever product that fixes a common problem of noise interference by our computers and phones. When I first received the iSilencer+, I tried it with my Google Pixel 4 XL phone that was nearby. The difference using the adapter was noticeable immediately. It was like a free audio upgrade to my headphones. I then used it on my computer with similar results. It was like a veil was lifted from the music, producing a more engaging, clearer sound. The music was more dynamic, with better phasing and soundstage. Treble, mid range and bass were all improved.Video Review

ConclusionThe difference to the sound by this low cost adapter is staggering. Highly recommended.Useful LinksThe iFi iSilencer comes in three versions. Link to all versions on Amazon – click HERE.