Archive | August, 2013

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An Alternative to SSD – Toshiba SSHD Review

Posted on 29 August 2013

If your computer is running on a Hard Disk Drive and you want to improve its performance, you may want to look into upgrading the internal drive. Doing so without spending too much is now very easy with the new SSHD internal storage introduced by Toshiba.

Features
The Toshiba SSHD can be used with any laptop and desktop and it also has special provisions to be used with specific models of Ultrabooks. The SSHD has solid state storage of 8GB on it and has the ability of boosting your computer’s performance. After the installation of the SSHD your computer will resume from sleep, boot up and run general applications with greater efficiency and speed.

A computer running on a regular hard disk drive takes a little over a minute to boot up. Once the SSHD is installed in the computer, at an average the computer boots up in under thirty seconds. In addition, applications such as Microsoft Excel, Word and web browsers will also require a shorter launch time. The only thing that the Toshiba SSHD lacks a little in is the data transfer speed. However, when it comes to boot time performance and application performance, it delivers the same speed as an SSD.

The SSHD has an amazing feature which is the main reason for its ability to significantly enhance your computer’s performance. It comes with an algorithm that transfers data from the spinning part of the drive to the SSD section. The data swap is dependent on how frequently the data is used. Rarely-used data will be stored onto the spinning section. On the other hand frequently-used data is stored on the SSD section.

Specifications
The Toshiba SSHD comes in 4 capacities. You can purchase it in 320GB, 500GB, 750GB or 1TB storage variants. The SSHD features three connector ports, SATA, SATA 2 and SATA 3. The drive has a 32MB cache memory and the spinning speed is 5,400 rpm.

Price
The 1TB variant of the Toshiba SSHD is available at $199 and the 500GB model is for $159.

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The Smartphone on Your Wrist – Omate TrueSmart Review

Posted on 28 August 2013

p>Smartwatches have attractive features, except the ability to make calls which is the reason they aren’t very popular. However, Omate is looking to change this with TrueSmart.

Features
The Omate TrueSmart is basically a smartwatch. It runs on Android 4.2.2 Jellybean. So, what makes this smartwatch so special? The TrueSmart supports a microSIM card and can be used to make and receive calls and text messages. The watch also has Bluetooth so you can pair it within any Bluetooth device that works with Android. With the TrueSmart you also get to use a variety of third-party fun applications like Facebook and Instagram.

Specifications
The watch has features specifications that are bound to amaze you. The Omate TrueSmart has a 1.54-inch TFT display with a decent resolution. The smartwatch also has a built in 5-megapixel camera and a screen resolution of 240 X 240. Not only that, the TrueSmart also has GPS and supports connection to a Wi-Fi network.

The TrueSmart is small in size but provides an amazing battery life. The 600 mAh battery gives a 100-hour standby time. The watch has a 4GB built-in memory which is decent for something this small, but it is the MicroSD card slot which gives you the ability to expand the memory up to 32GB.
The Omate TrueSmart has everything that you could possibly want from a Smartphone, let alone a smartwatch. The watch has a 1.3-GHz dual-core processor to compliment the Android version it runs on. The RAM is 512MB which may not be a lot but will surely give the watch a decent processing speed. The best feature about the Omate TrueSmart is that it is water resistant.

Price
This amazing watch will be hitting the market in October. At the time of launch the watch will be available for $199.
Smartphone screens are getting bigger everyday and if you want something smaller and more portable, the Omate TrueSmart is definitely for you.

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Razer's BlackWidow Ultimate 2013 Elite

Posted on 27 August 2013

Razer is a renowned manufacturer of gaming keyboards. It knows what gamers want and delivers accordingly. In addition, the company is known to come up with competitive designs and amazing features. With all that in mind, Razer recently launched a new mechanical gaming keyboard: BlackWidow Ultimate 2013 Elite. The keyboard is nothing fancy and the design is relatively simple, but it is considered as one of the best gaming keyboards.

Design and Features
The BlackWidow Ultimate 2013 Elite is mechanical and backlit with green lights. It uses the MX Cherry Brown keyboard switches. To operate the keyboard, you need 50 grams of force. The 1000 Hz polling and the keyboard’s 1 ms response ensures that you will not face any lag while using it.

No matter how fast you type, you will get the best response. This is because the BlackWidow Ultimate has an anti-ghosting feature which enables it to register 10 keys pressed at once. There are additional five keys which are very useful when playing games and are placed towards the left side of the keyboard. Another attractive feature of the BlackWidow Ultimate includes ports for microphone, USB and headphone connectivity.

The design of the BlackWidow Ultimate is very practical. The keys have an anti-fingerprint finishing on them to eliminate smudging. Though it is not as big as regular gaming keyboards, it weighs 1.5 kilograms. This weight ensures that it does not move while you are playing. These aside, the overall features of the keyboard are decent when compared to a regular keyboard. As a result, the BlackWidow Ultimate has a lot of competition from keyboards like Vengance K60 and K90. These keyboards have the same feel and have additional programmable keys.

Price
The BlackWidow Ultimate is priced at $139.99. Other gaming keyboards are sold for as low as $81.57. The features of the BlackWidow Ultimate do not justify the price. This is because it lacks certain features that its competitors are providing at a lower price. However, do check it out if you’re a Razer fan.

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A Great Wireless Dongle for the Price – a Google Chromecast Review

Posted on 26 August 2013

p>Wireless dongles are becoming immensely popular nowadays. Who wouldn’t’ want to use their Android or iOS device to control what they watch on a large screen TV. If you’re looking for a wireless streaming dongle that can stream video from your tablets or smartphones to your TV at an attractive price, you should look into the Google Chromecast.

Features
Google Chromecast is an amazing streaming device. You can stream just about anything from your tablet or smartphone to your TV. The device supports Android and iOS operating systems. Devices that run on either of the two OS act as a remote control for the Chromecast. Any TV show or movie that you watch on your smartphone or tablet can be streamed onto your TV using the Chromecast.

If you don’t have a device running on the operating systems that the device supports, all you need is the Google Chrome browser installed on your computer. Whether you are using Windows for PCs or Mac, whatever you watch on your Chrome browser can be streamed onto your TV with this device. If you missed an episode of your favorite TV show, you can simply go to Hulu, HBO Go or any major TV network website. The Chromecast is able to stream any video that is being played on the Google Chrome onto your TV.

The best part about the Chromecast is that there are no tangled wires or a large streaming box that goes along with the set up.

Design
The actual dongle is barely the size of your finger but has a solid design. You can easily hook it up to your TV’s HDMI port. If you have a too many wires in your TV’s back panel, this device is ideal for you as it won’t block any other input ports on the panel.

Price
Considering the amazing features that the Chromecast is offering, the price tag is even better. You can get a Chromecast for $35 which is a superb deal.

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Falcon Northwest Fragbox – the Ultimate Compact Gaming Desktop

Posted on 23 August 2013

Gaming computers are normally large and heavy because of their high performance specifications. However, the Falcon Northwest Fragbox is a gaming computer that comes packed with amazing specifications yet is compact and easy to carry around.

Specifications
The Falcon Northwest Fragbox has everything that a gaming desktop computer can have. The specifications are beyond exceptional. The Razor Blade 14 has a 2.2 GHz Intel Core i7 processor as opposed to the Intel Haswell Core i7 4470 K processor for the Fragbox. The Blade 14 only has an 8 GB DDR3 RAM while the Fragbox packs 16 GB of DDR3 RAM. Even the Velocity Micro Edge has a 16GB 1,600MHz SD RAM whereas the Fragbox’s has a 1,800 MHz RAM.

The normal graphics card included with the Fragbox is a 3GB Nvidia GeForce GTX 780. On the other hand, the Micro Edge and Blade 14 provide a 2 GB Nvidia GeForce GTX 680 or 2 GB Nvidia GeForce GTX 765M. The hard drive featured in the Fragbox is 960 GB, which is a fair amount of storage. The Velocity Micro Edge does provide more storage, but lacks in performance specs. The best part about these specs is that you can easily get them upgraded or downgraded. The price for the desktop will fluctuate according to the specifications you chose.

In addition to performance, the Fragbox has 10 USB ports and an HDMI port. The desktop comes with a three-year parts and labor warranty. Falcon Northwest has a good customer support so you can be sure that you are covered should anything go wrong with the computer.

Design
The Falcon Northwest Fragbox is assembled by hand, so every desktop is of the best quality. It is very light and weighs only 10 kilograms. Besides, the compact size makes the Fragbox even more popular with gamers. Add to these design elements the fact that this device offers better specs than any other desktop and you’ll realize why it’s the in-thing to own.

Price
The Falcon Northwest Fragbox starts at $1,600 and goes up to $3,468. The price is definitely steep, but considering the quality and the specs of the desktop, you’ll be getting a good deal.

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A Quick Look at the LG 55LA8600

Posted on 22 August 2013

There is a stiff competition between TV manufacturing companies. New models with the latest and most innovative features are being launched every other day, and one of those is reviewed in this piece. LG has launched its new 55LA8600 which has an impressive design and amazing features to make your TV watching experience a breeze.
Features & Design
LG’s 55LA8600 is a smart TV that runs on a dual-core processor. It supports media sharing and mobile devices. You can even use Wi-Fi to stream your phone contents on the TV. The applications that are included are pretty standard. It has Skype, the Weather Channel and Puzzle Quest. The TV also features a camera for using Skype and other video calling applications.
With the 55LA8600, LG has introduced a Magic Remote. Like all new technologies it does require getting used to. However, once you get a hang of it, it is an amazing experience to control your TV with. The Magic Remote is not just for changing channels; it works as a scroll wheel, pointer, voice remote and a gesture wand. The best part is that the remote can be programmed to act as a universal remote. So, you can control your Blu-Ray Player and Hi-Fi system with it, no matter what brand you have.
The features of the 55LA8600 are very easy to use. The menu screen is user-friendly and with a little time you will be operating it like a pro. LG has really put a lot of effort into the 55LA8600’s design. It looks futuristic and sleek. The TV has an aluminum bezel and it stands on a “Magic Stand”. From a distance, the stands are not easily visible, making the TV appear as if it’s floating. The 55LA8600 combined with the Magic Remote look like something out of a Science Fiction movie.
Price
The LG 55LA8600 is priced at $2,399 which is steep when compared to the other TVs available. LG’s focus on the TV’s features and its picture quality does not justify the price. Still, as it’s starting a new generation of TVs, it’s bound to inspire others.

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A Canon PIXMA MP230 Review

Posted on 21 August 2013

p>The most common issues with choosing a printer is finding something that is economical and user- friendly. Some printers are complex to use while others are high maintenance. Now Canon has launched a printer that is relatively simple to use for basic printing and scanning need: the Canon PIXMA MP230.

Pros
The features of the Canon PIXMA MP230 are not very flashy. It is aimed for people who have basic requirements like printing pictures from a memory card, scanning a few documents or attaching them to a network at a small business. The PIXMA MP230 boasts a very light design and focuses on necessity. On the other hand, it does not look cheap since it’s designed elegantly.

These aside, the resolution of the PIXMA MP230 is terrific. Canon has included the FINE (Full-photolithography Inkjet Nozzle Engineering) technology, which ensures a crisp 4800 by 1200 print. The lid of the scanner is quite flexible, so it will allow scanning magazines and books as well. The scanner bed tilts and you can see the ink cartridges to replace them. The controls are quite simple, so even though you should, you won’t even need to go through the manual to figure out how to operate the PIXMA MP230.

Cons
Aside from the lightweight and compact design, there are a few disadvantages to the PIXMA MP230. Firstly, Canon has not included an output tray. This means that if you are on a desk with limited space, the printed papers may fall to the floor unless you catch them in time. Secondly, the print head and the scanner are quite loud as compared to other inkjet printers. The printer is loud even while printing high quality images.

Price
The Canon PIXMA MP230 has its fair share of pros and cons. However, at an amazing price of $39.95 on Amazon, the pros far outweigh the cons. In addition, like most inexpensive printers, the Canon PIXMA MP230 is cost-effective to maintain.

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