Category Archives: Reviews

Honor 20 First Impressions + Camera

Welcome to my First Impressions of the Honor 20.

The Key Features are –

– Dual Nano-SIM
– 6.26 inch IPS LCD, 1080 x 2340 pixels, 19.5:9 ratio, 412 ppi
– Android 9.0 with Magic 2.1
– Kirin 980 processor
– 128 GB storage, 6 GB RAM
– Rear Cameras – 48 MP f/1.8 , 16 MP f/2.2 13mm ultrawide,2 MP macro camera & 2 MP depth sensor
– No headphone jack
– Active noise cancellation with dedicated mic, 32-bit/192kHz audio
– Bluetooth 5.0, A2DP, apt-X HD, LE
– Infrared port included
– Fingerprint side-mounted
– 3750 mAh battery with fast battery charging at 22.5W (50% in 24 min)
– Dimensions 154.3 x 74 x 7.9 mm
– Weight 174 g
– Build Front/back glass, aluminium frame

As you can see the Honor 20 is a well specified device. Now sit back and enjoy my first impressions, with a wide range of photos to take a closer look at too.

Video Review

Useful Links

Honor 20 more info and latest pricing on Amazon UK

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LG V50 Thinq Camera Review including 120 Stunning Photos & Comparison Galaxy S10 vs Huawei P30 Pro

Welcome to my camera review of the LG V50 Thinq. This is a detailed review covering a multitude of sub topics covering the camera. There is also a comparison between the Samsung Galaxy S10 and Huawei P30 Pro.

Index to Review

– O mins 0 seconds – Front Video Camera
– 0 mins 33 seconds – Camera App Deep Dive plus tips and tricks
– 4 mins 45 seconds – Special Camera Modes sample footage
– 8 mins 14 seconds – Manual Photo and Manual Video
– 10 mins 40 seconds – Video Samples incl Manual Video, HDR10 Video, Manual Slow Motion Video
– 14 mins 10 seconds – LG V50 Thinq vs Samsung Galaxy S10 vs Huawei P30 Pro Camera Comparision
– 22 mins 30 seconds – 120+ Photos from the LG V50 Thinq
– 28 mins 26 seconds – Final Thoughts

Other posts on the LG V50 Thinq include –

Photographing Bees with the LG V50 Thinq

LG Folding Dual Screen Review for the LG V50 Thinq

LG V50 Thinq First Impressions

Useful Links

LG V50 Thinq on Amazon

5 x Bee Shots ALL photographed using the LG V50 Thinq – The Phone with 5G

Photographing bees isn’t the easiest thing to capture. Bees move, the sting if you’re not careful and using your phone isn’t always the best option.

However, the LG V50 Thinq has a little trick up its sleeve that I will reveal in my Camera Review which goes live tomorrow.

The Camera Review will also include a mini tutorial of the camera app, how to gets the best shots from the app, and live samples of the camera modes.

I will also show some of the editing options you can perform after taking the shot.

In addition to photos, video will be covered off too, with footage and more covering the auto and manual options.

The LG V50 Thinq is full of surprises!

The Camera Review will include a photo gallery at the end of over 120 photos.

Powerbeats Pro vs AirPods vs Samsung Galaxy Buds

Welcome to my review and comparison of the Powerbeats Pro wireless earphones. These are then compared to the AirPods and Samsung Galaxy Buds.

Airpods

– physical size – smallest, weight 4 grams each airpod case is 40 grams, one size fits all, may not fit you , only in white.
– no need to tap, just say Hey Siri , use Siri to raise volume etc.
– charging, qi wireless an option, 5 hours or 3 hours of calls, case holds total 24 hours battery life, can get a version with a qi wireless case, lightning cable otherwise.
– quick charge – 15 minutes in the case equals up to 3 hours of listening time4 or up to 2 hours of talk time.
– connection Apple H1 headphone chip, AirPods use optical sensors and motion accelerometers to detect when they’re in your ears. Whether you’re using both AirPods or just one, the H1 chip automatically routes the audio and engages the microphone. And when you’re on a call or talking to Siri, an additional speech-detecting accelerometer works with beamforming microphones to filter out external noise and focus on the sound of your voice.
– ease of use – easy pairing on Apple gear, than synced over icloud to all other Apple gear, quick switching, pairs to android, easily too with button, can use individually
– noise cancellation – none.
– audio quality – clear and crisp, good for audio books, voice calls excellent, very low latency.
– Cost £170 without qi case , £200 with the case.

Powerbeats Pro

– physical size – largest of bunch, huge case, Ear tips with four size options, in black and other colours soon, comfy due to design, wont fall out.

– press and hold Beats button on either side for voice assistant
– no need to tap , hey siri built in, other voice assistant like those on android, just press the Beats button.
– Charging – no wireless charging – 9 hours time , 5 mins quick charge gives 1.5 hours battery, Lightning to USB-A charging cable
– connection again Apple H1 headphone chip enhanced phone call performance and call handling from either earbud, easy pairing on apple gear, syncs across icloud
– ease of use – adjustable, secure-fit earhooks for lightweight comfort and stability
– reinforced design for sweat and water resistance during tough workouts, each side has exact same controls
– passive noise cacellations
– voice clarity on calls is excellent, the best of 3
– audio quality the best of all 3. balanced sound with a slight bass , very low latency
– Cost £220

Galaxy Buds

– physiscal size – middle of the road, ear tips in box, and wing tips, dont need them as comfy to wear and stay in.

– press and hold touch button for voice assistnat
– charging – either using cradle with usb a, or qi charging , 15 mins gets 1.5 hours
– connection – 6 hours , then another 7 hours with case
– connection – excellent, occassionally drop , easy pairing with samsung app, app does fimwares, had two, equaliser options, dynamic is best, and ambient sound option as well.
– ease of use – touch controls, can be configured, splash resistant
– passive noise cancellation
– poor voice call clarity outside
– good audio, some latency, more on some phones than others.
– cost £130 although deals are even lower

Video Review

Conclusion

The Powerbeats Pro are the best wireless earphones that cover all the basics and provide a good audio quality. Recommended.

Useful Links

Powerbeats Pro Latest info & pricing on Amazon UK

AirPods latest info & pricing on Amazon UK

Samsung Galaxy Buds latest info & pricing

Honor 20 Lite Review – Triple Camera Delight

Welcome to my review of the Honor 20 Lite. The Honor 20 Lite retails for £249.99.

The Honor 20 Lite is a vibrant looking phone, featuring a dual tone gradient, 3D curved body. Anyone buying this will feel like they’ve bought a far more expensive handset.

Key Features

– 4gb ram, 128gb storage with expandable storage via micro SD cards.
– EMUI 9, Android 9.
– GPU Turbo 2 for improved graphics.
– Kirin 710 chipset , Mali G51 graphics.
– Large 3,400 mah battery.
– 6.21 inch full view ips 1080p display , 90% body ratio.
– New generation eye comfort mode, certified by TuV rheinland.
– Dual 4G sim, ideal for travelling or just having flexibility.
– Price £250.
– Weight 164g.
– Construction is a plastic build.
– Includes a 3.5mmm headphone jack with reasonable headphone audio.
– Micro USB connector still and not the newer USB C.
– Single downward speaker – this sounds reasonable.

In terms of security the phone features both face and fingerprint unlock. One of the neat features is the phone wont unlock when your eyes are closed. Also the face data is stored in secure enclave on your handset.

Cameras

The Honor 20 Lite features a strong camera setup on both the rear and front.

Front Camera
– 32mp front selfie camera, f/2.0, allows you to print selfies to poster size with no loss of detail.

Triple rear cameras
– 24mp f/1.8 Quadra CFA sensor , boosts low light performance , crop or zooming is possible with the high resolution .
– 8mp ultra wide 120 degree wide angle
– 2mp depth sensor

The Honor 20 Lite includes a super night mode , with AI stabilisation. You can also adjust the ISO and shutter speed within this mode. In addition to the portrait mode and standard photo mode, you have time lapse, light painting (star trails, traffic trails and silky water) Pro mode and even more options.

The AI camera is smart enough to recognise 500 scenes and 22 categories. In my testing, I found it better to keep AI on.

The AI beauty mode, supports 3D face recognition, detecting over 100 facial point to optimise facial details, adjusting looks based on gender, age and skin tone. Works with group selfies too. You also have the portrait selfie and lighting effects.

Video Review including camera samples

Conclusion

The Honor 20 Lite a solid budget phone with lots of storage available, which is unusual at this price point. It also comes with lots of camera flexibility.

Useful Links

Latest pricing and more information on Amazon UK Click HERE.

OnePlus 7 Pro First Impressions + Camera Test on new firmware

At 7am this morning, my OnePlus 7 Pro received the new firmware OS 9.5.5 which incorporated big updates for the camera.

I waited for this update before releasing my first impressions video to ensure I gave the phone a fair opportunity to fix a few things and improve the camera.

So what do I think of the phone ? And how good is the camera now?

Honor 20 Pro – Hands on with the Quad Camera – It’s a Beast!

Honor launched its new flagship. It comes with quad camera with a Sony IMX586 48MP Main Camera, featuring the advanced AI Ultra Clarity mode and AIS Super Night mode. The quad camera is also packed with the 16MP Super Wide Angle Camera, 8MP Telephoto Camera, and the 2MP Macro Camera, which allows users to capture wider and closer with Optical Image Stabilisation.

HONOR 20 Series boasts a 6.26″ all-view display with a 91.7% screen-to-body ratio. the industry-leading GPU Turbo 3.0, offering users an enhanced visual and tactile experience, an immersive audio experience through the Virtual 9.1 Surround Sound feature powered by Histen 6.0. This is the first time that this cutting-edge technology is applied to smartphones. The Virtual 9.1 surround sound supports most earphones and packs an in-built dual microphone with noise reduction.

So let’s take a first look at this phone as I went hands on at the official London launch.

Oppo Reno 10x Zoom First Impressions & Camera

Oppo held its UK launch of its Oppo Reno range of handsets.

These included, the Oppo Reno, Oppo Reno 10x Zoom and Oppo Reno 5G.

EE will be offering the 5G version. The Oppo Reno is an all screen phone with a shark fin pop up front camera.

I took a closer look at the Oppo Reno 10x Zoom, the UI, camera interface and a few camera samples.

iFi Audio xCan Portable Power Amp vs iFi Audio xDSD Portable DAC Amp – Review & All the Differences!

Welcome to my review and comparison between the iFi Audio xCAN and xDSD.

Intro – What are they?

xCAN is a dual-mono portable headphone amplifier with up to 1,000mW of power per channel plus it also includes bluetooth. It retails for £299.

xDSD is portable headphone amp DAC that can playback high-quality digital audio file formats. Hi-Res True Native playback for all music formats from MP3 to DSD512, PCM768 and 2xDXD. It retails for £399.

Connections

xCAN – digital SPDIF or via analogue 2.5/3.5mm jack connection. iFi’s S-Balanced technology means that you gain the advantages of a balanced connection even when using an unbalanced one.

xDSD only 3.5mm jack using iFi’s S-Balanced® circuit delivers maximum performance from single-ended and balanced headphones alike. You can connect to Apple devices using the CCK Lightning to USB adapter. The design of the xDSD allows for a secure fit. See video below for more info. The 3.5mm coaxial/TOSLINK combo SPDIF input allows connections to older DAPs and CD players.

Extra Features

xCAN 3D+® opens up your music to give you the spaciousness of a live-concert atmosphere. and XBass Ⅱ® analogue bass correction system corrects headphone/speaker bass response to deliver a more natural sound to the midrange frequencies.
xDSD has 3D+ and the original XBass+

xCAN uses the parent company AMR’s Global Master Timing® (GMT)/ Memory Buffer System. solves the problem of digital SPDIF jitter.

xCAN USB C to charge
xDSD micro USB to charge

Bluetooth

xCAN – ESS Sabre 44.1/48k 16-Bit (AAC, aptX, aptX LL and SBC)
xDSD – AAC & APT-X

Battery

xCAN – 18 hours, 12 hours with bluetooth
xDSD 10 hours

Power

xCAN upto 1,000mw in balanced at 32 ohms, 6 volts max too (3 volts in s balanced mode/ 600mw)
xDSD upto 500mw but at 16 ohms, 270mw at 50 ohms, remember xCAN was 1,000mw at 32 ohms so significantly more powerful. Max voltage 3.8 volts.

Weight

xCAN / xDSD both weigh 127g

Sound Quality

xCAN the extra oomph really make the xCan squeeze every last drop out of your headphones. From my Fiio FA7 and AKG and Sennheiser HD600, all sounded excellent. Excellent bass extension, seperations and more. Genres from dance, classical and jass , rock all handled with aplomb. Like everything, all depends on the quality of the source, but then there is bluetooth. This is a good sounding option, iFi have gone to a lot of trouble to get the best sonically. Not all Bluetooth is made equally. Highly convienant having bluetooth. Having the Xbass and 3D+ really is a godsend too. Some headphones like my AKG really benefit from a slight bass boost.

For an extra £100.

xDSD gives you a decent DAC with good amp but not as powerful as the xCAN. However, partnering both together will bring a big smile on your face.

Of course, if you want a great DAC but extreme power to drive any headphone, iFi Audio have you covered with the micro iDSD Black Label, with a max of 10 volts, 4,000mW of power at 16 ohms. This costs £599, is much bigger but still portable.

Video Review and Comparison

Conclusion

The iFi Audio xCAN is a fantastic portable headphone amplifier and highly recommended. If you need a decent DAC and amp then look no further than the xDSD.

Useful Links

For more information and specs, click on the respective links below.

xCAN on Amazon UK
xDSD on Amazon UK
Micro iDSD Black Label on Amazon UK