Tag Archives: Review

Lenovo Vibe K5 Dual Sim Smartphone Review – The Phone with Noise

Lenovo K5 pic 2

Welcome to my review of the Lenovo Vibe K5 Dual Sim smartphone. Thanks to Clove Technology .

The Key Specifications

– Android 5.1 (Lollipop)
– Octa-core 1.4GHz Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ 415
– 2GB RAM / 16 GB storage / up to 32GB micro SD external storage
– 5″ HD IPS LCD screen
– 13 MP main camera / 5 MP front facing camera
– Premium aluminium casing
– Dolby Atmos enabled speakers
– Dual SIM (2x micro)

Lenovo K5 pic 1

Review

Before watching my video review of the Lenovo Vibe K5 smartphone, it is worth highlighting that you can use 2 micro sims and add a 32gb micro SD card using the third slot. It features stereo dolby atmos stereo speakers.

Available from Clove Technology .

Samsung Note 7 – First Impressions – Dual Sim – Duos – The Setup, Official Cases and More

Samsung Note 7 LED CASE

I have now setup my new Samsung Note 7 Duos (Duos is the dual sim Note 7) a few nights ago. I decided to try Samsung’s Smart Switch application which worked fairly well. The Smart Switch application allows you to transfer pretty much everything from one phone to another including phone logs, text messages, images, music, docs, apps and application data and much more. This can be information from the micro SD card as well. You can select whatever information you like to be transferred. Instructions are shown showing how you transfer data from an iPhone, android phone, windows phone, Samsung phone and BlackBerry.

Being dual sim, the sim tray is a hybrid version meaning you can either have 2 nano sims or one nano sim and a micro SD card.

SIM

Within the connection settings there is a sim manager option as shown above with some extra options for controlling both sims. You can also limit the number of notifications on the status bar to 3 so as to not interfere with the signal information.

The Note 7 does not have Touchwiz. Samsung calls the new interface Grace UI and it really is very polished.

Settings

Main settings menu shown above. You can now have themes, wallpapers, and icons for the Grace UI. I have a material dark theme applied.

Home screen

I am so pleased I picked the Black Onyx finish. This is by far the best option. It looks bad-ass.The Note 7 is beautiful from all angles and the Samsung really have excelled from a hardware and software point of view. Everything is tightly integrated and improved from the Samsung Galaxy S7. For example, the calendar widget can now be white or black and has a transparency slider. Everywhere across the email app and more there are neat touches that I will cover off in future posts.

I have 5 cases for the Note 7. 3 official and 2 third party options. The Samsung LED cover is shown in the top photo. This is super cool but does take more time to setup as you can design you own LED app icons. I recommend doing this too. Its fun and makes your LED notifications more personalised. The S View Standing case is also excellent using the always on display to show data in the window. I will cover off more on the cases in future posts.

So the Note 7 has an iris scanner, S Pen, Edge screen and the kitchen sink. The fingerprint sensor on the Note 7 is perfect. Better than the one on the S7. The iris scanner is a PITA. It took me ages to get my eyes learnt. And I have loads of failures when trying to unlock. I need more practice clearly! However, I can unlock via the fingerprint or iris as both are activated at the moment.

I did receive a 230mb software update yesterday as well. One last point, my dual sim Note 7 has the Exynos processor.

On paper the Note 7 is clearly a S7 Edge with a S Pen (stylus) with a premium price over the S7 Edge too. In reality it feels like a totally different device. I will be amazed if any other manufacturer can beat the Samsung Note 7 in 2016.

Lindy Lightning Cable Protector Kit – Review – Give your iPhone & iPad cables extra longevity

Lindy review items

Welcome to my review of the Lindy Lightning Cable Protector kit.

Lindy have released the Lightning Cable Connector Protector Kit, which is aimed at saving money on expensive Lightning Cables for Apple products. The Protector Kit provides a tough, rugged shell to protect existing cables thereby prolonging the life of Apple Lightning Cables at a fraction of the cost of any replacements. The Lindy Lightning Cable Protector kit is currently £3.49 on Amazon UK.

So what do you get with the kit? The Protection kit features a two-piece design and a silicone centre, the compact kit simply snaps together to shield the weakest part of the cable. The kit also contains a protector for the USB Type A connection.

The silicone centre is fluorescent to make it easier to see at night. The Protection kit is available in 3 colours, blue, green and pink.

Conclusion

The Lindy Lightning Cable Protector Kit is a simple idea and solution. Recommended.

For more information and the latest pricing on Amazon – Click HERE.

Video Review

Samsung Gear Fit 2 – Fitness Tracking at its best?

Samsung Gear Fit 2

Welcome to my review of the Samsung Gear Fit 2. This is Samsung’s updated fitness tracker from the original Gear Fit which I reviewed along with 18 other devices. Click HERE to re read any of the previous reviews.

Key Specifications

– Display 1.5” Touch Curved sAMOLED 216 x 432
– Memory RAM: 512MB / Storage: 4GB
– Battery 200mAh / Typical usage time : 3~4 days /Standby time : Up to 5 days /GPS battery time : Up to 9 hours
– Sensor GPS, HR, Accelerometer, Gyro, Barometer
– AP Dual-core (1GHz Dual)
– Compatibility Android 4.4/ 1.5GB RAM
– Water Resistant IP68
– Small Size fits wrists – 125 – 170mm
– Large Size fits wrists – 155 – 210mm
– Weight 29g

Main Review

The Gear Fit 2 includes a built-in GPS so that you track your running route, distance and speed in real time. It also has a built in heart rate sensor so whether your running, walking, cycling or elliptical training the Gear Fit 2 has you covered. Check out the video review to see all the different exercise options. The 1.5 inch display is excellent and shows all your stats needed as you workout. The Gear Fit 2 comes with a number of different watch faces, some are customisable too. The Gear Fit 2 comes in black, pink and blue. I have a black Gear Fit 2 in large. I would recommend large for most people. Samsung have added a feature called Together, which is one on one comparison with another person. S Health app is needed for this too. You can also connect a pair of bluetooth headphones and stream music from the Gear Fit 2.

Overall the Gear Fit 2 is really polished affair.

Now check out the video review, which reveals more information from the app and fitness tracker, watch faces, options and lot’s more.

Conclusion

Samsung have excelled themselves with the Gear Fit 2. It is ultra comfortable to wear and is easy to understand and operate. It also is accurate and works really well. Recommended.

For the more info and the latest pricing on Amazon – http://amzn.to/2bcMHat

Video Review

Samsung Gear IconX Wireless Headphones review – The headphones with no cables & a heart rate monitor!

Samsung IconX headphones

Welcome to my review of the Samsung Gear IconX, a truly wire free headphone with a built in heart rate and fitness tracker!


Samsung IconX headphones

Key Specifications

– Dimensions – Earbud: 18.9 x 26.4 x 26.0 mm /Case: 35.3 x 30.3 x 92 mm
– Sensor – HR, Accelerometer, Capacitive Touch
– Storage 4GB *Usable memory is less than 3.5GB. *Can play up to 1,000 music tracks.
– Connectivity BT 4.1 (BLE)
– Battery Earbuds: 47mAh / Case: 315mAh
– Water Resistant -Splash Resistant (P2i Nano Coating)
– Audio Spec Frequency Range: 20~20 kHz / Speaker Sensitivity: 89.5 dB ±
– Microphone / 2 per earbud
– Compatibility – Android 4.4, RAM 1.5GB RAM
– Audio Playing Format MP3, M4A, AAC, WAV, WMA (WMA v9)

The Main Review

I will start with my review by saying that the Samsung Gear IconX is the best product I have reviewed in a long time. It is simply genius but also not without faults.

The IconX is totally wire free. There are no wires between the ear buds. The ear buds comes with 3 different size ear tips and wing tips. This means that once fitted in to your ears, they do not fall out. I tried everything to shake these out of my ears but to no avail. Then I did a really sweaty workout to see if sweat would phase them or make them fall out. It didn’t.

When you run with the Gear IconX, you get an in-ear voice guide to help you reach your vigorous-intensity zone. The voice guide is recorded by real human beings in 15 different languages. After a working out you can sync with your smartphone and check your stats and monitor progress on the S Health app.

Whether walking or running, the IconX is smart enough to track your activity and give updates on essential data from speed, distance and duration to heart rate and calories burnt via a dedicated voice guide.

If you are walking or running on the streets and want to hear the sound around you for safety reasons, you can turn on ambient sound in the Gear app on your phone, or by using the touch pad on the IconX.

The battery life is the IconX’s weak point. If you stream music from your phone you will get exactly 90 mins. If you play music directly from the earbuds the battery life increases to 2.5 hours. However, the protective case is also a battery pack and recharges the IconX earbuds 4 times in about an hour. So if you did 4 workouts a week, you would in reality only need to charge the case once. I did also experience a couple of drop outs when streaming music from my phone, and once the left earbud stopped playing music. All I had to do was restart the track.

The controls are simple to use. You select which side earbud you want to use as the control piece. Then with various numbers of taps you can start playing music, skip or rewind tracks, change the volume and even start a workout. You can also turn on ambient mode directly from the earbud or turn it off.

These play music so what do the sound like. Really good to be honest. Natural in their sound reproduction and plenty of volume too. Bass was accurate too. Whilst using these for phone calls, I had no issue hearing the caller and nor did the caller have any issue hearing me.

Do check out the video review as this shows the Gear IconX application and a lot more too!

Conclusion

Once you have used these headphones / fitness tracker, no other product gets close. Despite a few flaws, I highly recommend these big time. Simply an amazing product.

For more info and the latest pricing on Amazon – http://amzn.to/2aHVaFN

Video Review

iBasso D14 Bushmaster High-Performance Stereo DAC & Headphones Amplifier – Review – For iPhone, MAC, Android & PC

Ibasso D14 Bushmaster

Welcome to my review of the iBasso D14 Bushmaster High-Performance Stereo DAC & Headphones Amplifier. The iBasso D14 Bushmaster is ideal for connecting to your iPhone, Android phone, computer or MAC via the lightning, optical, USB or analogue line in port to substantially improve the sound of your headphones.

Key Features and Specifications

– Sabre32 ES9018K2M DAC chip with XMOS USB receiver for superb sound conversion
– Up to 32bit/384kHz PCM signal and native DSD up to 256x directly from computers/mac
– Asynchronous USB transfer
– Works as a DAC for Android smart phones via a USB OTG.
– With Apple Camera Connection Cable works as a DAC with iOS devices
– Built in battery lasts 13 hours as a DAC+AMP combo or 25 hours as just an AMP.
– Other than the USB input the D14 can take up to 24bit/192kHz optical input coaxial input and analogue line in.
– Amp uses an OPAMP based high output headphone amplifier which can output up to 400mW into a 32ohm load.
– Frequency Response 17hz – 20khz DAC, 17hz to 100khz AMP
– Weight 149g
– Dimensions 60mm x 104mm x 20mm
– Recommended Headphones 8 to 300ohm

Ibasso D14 Bushmaster

Audio Quality

iBasso provide many extras with the D14. These include a protective pouch, OTG Mini USB to MicroUSB, Mini USB to USB A,3.5mm analog cable and a 3.5mm SPDIF cable. These are all short length cables. You also get the mini USB cable for recharging. The D14 is fairly neutral sounding with speed and plenty of detail. The mid range and vocals are superb. The D14 has a deep and wide soundstage.

The D14 sound quality improved during the course of its burn in which was around 50 hours. During playback it gets slightly warm but this has absolutely no impact on its performance, quite the opposite actually. iBasso have included many different ways of connecting to the D14 making it fairly versatile.

At its price point of around £175 nothing sounds quite as good. But if you have the budget I would recommend the Oppo HA-2 which costs £259 and is far more smartphone friendly. See my review – Click HERE.

Conclusion

A little bit larger than most portable headphone/DACs and still using mini USB, but well worth the extra bulk as its powers your headphones in a way to reproduce beautiful tunes.

For more info and the latest pricing on Amazon UK – Click HERE.

Video Review

Sennheiser Momentum Wireless 2.0 Headphone Review – The Gold Standard of Bluetooth Headphones

sennheiser Momentum Wireless Headphones

Welcome to my review of the Sennheiser Momentum Wireless 2.0 Bluetooth headphones.

The Key Features

The Sennheiser Momentum Over Ear headphones are a premium bluetooth headphone that come with many features as below. With the rise in popularity of bluetooth headphones and the next iPhone not having a 3.5mm headphone jack, these are one of the best bluetooth headphones for sound quality.

– Closed Circumaural design featuring Bluetooth wireless technology
– 18 ohm high-end transducers to produce high quality audio
– NoiseGuard hybrid active noise cancellation with dual built-in microphones dynamically cancel out external noise for better speech intelligibility
– NFC for quick pairing to smart devices
– Attachable audio cable, in case Bluetooth connectivity is not permitted
– Leather covered memory foam cushions provide higher comfort for long listening sessions
– Folding headband for storage in to the included carry case
– Connect up to two devices simultaneously (phones and computers) and up to eight devices in the pairing list
– 22 hour battery life with Bluetooth and NoiseRad activated

Key Specifications

– Impedance passive 18 ohms, active 480 ohms
– Frequency Range – 16 Hz – 22000 Hz
– Dual omni-directional microphone
– Bluetooth 4.0 + EDR – A2DP + AVRCP + HSP + HFP
– APT-X
– Weight 260g
– In the box – 1.4m audio cable with 3.5mm low-profile angled plug, USB Charging cable,Inflight adapter, Manuals, Carrying case

Sound Quality

I recently reviewed the new flagship bluetooth headphone from Bose, the Bose Quietcomfort 35. Click HERE to read the review. The Bose QC35 cost £100 less than the Sennheiser Momentum headphones and offer better noise cancellation. In fact the noise cancellation on the Bose QC35 is nothing short of miraculous. So I wondered how Sennheiser’s flagship bluetooth headphone would compare.

For starters the Sennheiser Momentums offer a hybrid noise cancellation system. It works but you can still hear noise outside as its not as powerful as that from the Bose QC35. The Sennheiser Momentum cost £100 more than the Bose QC35, costing £379. That is a lot of money! So what extra do you achieve and are they worth £379?

The Sennheiser Momentum are luxuriously built bluetooth headphones with leather pads filled with memory foam, providing superb comfort when worn. APT-X is included for devices that support this standard. The key aspects is the audio quality and the Sennheiser Momentums do not fail to disappoint. They possess superb high quality audio reproduction via bluetooth. As closed back headphones, the music stays within your ears. Bass is fast, deep and punchy. Mids and treble are fantastic.

Connect the supplied audio cable and the sound is even better. I then used an iBasso D14 Headphone amp/dac with these and reproduced even better audio quality. Call quality is excellent. Personally, I have not heard any better sounding bluetooth headphones. But are they worth £379. No I think Sennheiser has been a little greedy. These should be nearer the £300 mark. However, at the moment there is no other option if you want the best audio quality.

Conclusion

The Sennheiser Momentum are expensive bluetooth headphones with noise cancellation. However, they are one of the best sounding headphones and extremely comfortable.

For more info and the latest pricing on Amazon UK – Click HERE.

Video Review

Choetech 10,400 mAh Portable QC3 Power Bank with Lightning Port – review

Choetech Portable Power bank

Welcome to my review of the Choetech Quick Charge 3 Portable Power Bank complete with iOS lightning port as well.

The Key Features –

– Qualcomm Quick Charge 3.0 Output and backward compatible with Quick Charge 2 and 1.
– Built in LG high-quality battery cells. LG cells much more reliable and higher efficiency than major battery cells in the market to fully use the capacity of 10400mAh.
– Multiple intelligent security protections (over current, over voltage, overload and short circuit protection).
– With a Quick Charge 2 charger you can recharge the power bank at Quick Charge 2 speeds.
– Use either a micro USB or lightning cable to recharge the power bank.

A power bank is a power bank. Not very exciting but functional. I have replaced my old Aukey power bank with this new Choetech power bank as it offers quick charge 3 speeds and the ability to recharge it via a lightning or micro USB cable. A neat feature is the ability to recharge the power bank itself at quick charge 2 speeds. You will need an QC2 charger to do this.

If you want to know more and find the latest deal on Amazon Click HERE.

To view the entire Choetech range of products – Click HERE.

In a meantime, enjoy the video review of the Choetech Power Bank.

Withings Activite Steel – Swiss Styled Watch with Activity Tracking / 8 months battery – Review

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Welcome to my review of the Withings Activite Steel watch. The key features are –

– Automatic activity tracking – Steps, runs, swims (water resistant – 50m) and calories burned
– Sleep monitoring – Sleep cycle analysis (light and deep sleep) plus silent vibrating alarm
– Automatic synchronisation – Visualise trends and data on your smartphone with the free Health Mate app available on iOS and android
– Premium materials – Stainless steel, chrome hands, silicon sport strap
No charging – Up to 8-month battery life

The Withings Activite Steel smartwatch is a breeze to setup. You download the Health Mate app, and follow the simple instructions. I was all setup within 5 mins. Syncing is done periodically during the day using Bluetooth Low Energy. This is an analogue, swiss style watch. The watch strap is easily removable with a built in slide pin. Withings sell leather straps made from quality Barenia leather from Haas Tanneries, the supplier of the finest French Haute Couture houses. Choice of black or tawny brown colours. A single leather strap is £100. The silcone strap is also replaceable with other colour straps. Withings sell a 3 pack of coloured silicone straps for £25. The colours are orange, plum and teal.

The watch has a dial for the hands and minute hands. The other dial moves from 0 to 100% of step target. On the app you set how many steps is you goal. The Health Mate app displays a whole range of data.

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The Health Mate app is elegantly designed, displays all your data, auto tracks exercises and shows the data for that exercise. GPS is not included.

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You can share your data, get competitive with friends and view different stats over various time periods.

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The first thing I noticed is the comfort of the strap. Next the watch size is much smaller than expected. In fact, I decided it was too small to look at on my wrist and lost interest in wearing it. In my mind a watch that is meant to look like a watch, needs to look cool and smart first. However, I think changing the strap for orange or black leather would be a better choice. I cannot believe this doesn’t need charging and lasts 8 months. This takes all the pain out of charging a tracker. In fact it never needs charging. It uses a standard watch battery which you replace after 8 months. Again, my main issue is the watch costs around £139 but just doesn’t look expensive enough. There is a Sapphire version which does look smarter. Some people will prefer the smaller size watch face. The strap is 18mm.

Despite its size, it is a wonderful activity / sleep tracker. I love how the analogue dial moves round showing you the percentage of your goal. Your step goal is set in the app. This is the first tracker that I didn’t feel the need to know my actual number of steps. This is shown when you open the app. I also like the simplicity of the watch. One last option is a silent alarm. Notifications are not possible.

Conclusion

For me the negatives were its small watch face and strap which made it look wrong on my wrist. For others this could be ok. As a tracking it worked well.

More info & latest pricing on Amazon UK

Withings Activite Steel – Swiss Activity Tracker – First Impressions

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Welcome to my first impressions of the Withings Activite Steel watch. The key features are –

– Automatic activity tracking – Steps, runs, swims (water resistant – 50m) and calories burned
– Sleep monitoring – Sleep cycle analysis (light and deep sleep) plus silent vibrating alarm
– Automatic synchronisation – Visualise trends and data on your smartphone with the free Health Mate app available on iOS and android
– Premium materials – Stainless steel, chrome hands, silicon sport strap
No charging – Up to 8-month battery life

The Withings Activite Steel smartwatch arrived yesterday. Photo above shows watch on my wrist. Settings up is a breeze. You download the Health Mate app, and follow the simple instructions. I was all setup within 5 mins. Syncing is done periodically during the day using Bluetooth Low Energy. This is an analogue, swiss style watch. The watch strap is easily removable with a built in slide pin. Withings sell leather straps made from quality Barenia leather from Haas Tanneries, the supplier of the finest French Haute Couture houses. Choice of black or tawny brown colours. A single leather strap is £100. The silcone strap is also replaceable with other colour straps. Withings sell a 3 pack of coloured silicone straps for £25. The colours are orange, plum and teal.

The watch has a dial for the hands and minute hands. The other dial moves from 0 to 100% of step target. On the app you set how many steps is you goal. The Health Mate app displays a whole range of data, more of which I will cover off in my review.

The first thing I noticed is the comfort of the strap. Next the watch size is smaller than expected. I think changing the strap for orange or black leather would be a better choice. I cannot believe this doesn’t need charging and lasts 8 months. This takes all the pain out of charging a tracker. My main issue is the watch costs around £139 but just doesn’t look expensive enough.

However, seeing the analogue dial move round felt far less stressful than having an actual number of steps travelled on the screen. Opening the health app does reveal step count and more.

More soon.

More info & latest pricing on Amazon UK