Archive | November, 2015

Olympus E-M10 Mark II Review

Posted on 30 November 2015

The Olympus E-M10 Mark II has incredible features with lots of options and fairly easy to use. It doesn’t matter if you are new to photography or a professional, the E-M10 Mark II can be used by anybody. The size of the camera is ideal for the on-the-go person. The camera has lots of customization features and produces high quality images. So let’s have a closer look.

The Look and Feel
The design of the camera is fairly similar to its predecessor Mark 1. The sleek black and silver camera has a firm grip on the front along with a thumb grip on the back. Overall the camera is very compact and it is able to accommodate all the control buttons without making it confusing for the user. It is also very lightweight, only 390g, which makes it highly portable. The size and weight of the E-M10 Mark II make it ideal for people who are travelling or participating in casual shoots.

Features
The basic features of the Olympus’ E-M10 Mark II are the same as Mark I. A few discernible differences include 8.5 fps in continuous shooting mode, AF targeting pad on the touchscreen, focus bracketing, silent shutter mode, 120fps high speed video and 4K time-lapse video creation. It also has a 16 megapixel Micro Four Thirds CMOS sensor with 5-axis image stabilization. Moreover, the electronic view finder has been upgraded to 2.36million dots, which is pretty high resolution. The touch screen can be tilted almost 3 inches and a pop up flash can be used for extra lighting.

The E-M10 Mark II can also be used on Wi-Fi to transfer images to your iOS or android device. All videos are recorded in Full-HD with stereo microphones. The time lapse features allows the user to click up to 999 images and combine them in a movie format.

The Good and the Bad
The camera is like this small box stuffed with great goodies. It is very high quality with electronic view-finder built-in, which makes it great for using it in the sunlight while the 5-axis image stabilization system makes it great for night time use as well. The camera also allows the user to use several options to customize images.
The camera does have a few issues. The viewfinder sometimes fails to show the image under very bright light. Also, its touchscreen options are not customizable, which sometimes make it difficult to get to the right option quickly.

Conclusion
The size, weight and features, all make the Olympus E-M10 Mark II a great purchase for casual and professional photographers. Professional photographers can use this camera as a compact alternate to larger high quality cameras while enthusiast photographers could buy this as an ‘on-the-go’ camera for travelling or outdoor activities.

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LG 55EG9100: OLED Made Affordable (Slightly)

Posted on 25 November 2015

The LG 55EG9100 is a successor of LG’s 55EC9300 and both OLED TVs are fairly similar, except the LG 55EG9100 is relatively cheaper. This is exactly what LG needs to bring to the market to swerve potential customers from buying high-end LCD TVs to a more affordable OLED TV. So, let’s take a closer look at what makes the 55EG9100 worth buying.

The Look and Feel
LG 55EG9100 is a curved screen TV with a thin top and is 2.8 inches thick on the bottom to accommodate power and input ports. It also has a slim border of 0.35″, which makes it appear all screen. The back of the TV and the power cord are white, which is an unusual choice by LG, but the TV still looks futuristic. The TV can be mounted on a wall or placed on its stand.

Features
The LG 55EG9100 is excellent for viewing in dim lighting, as the pixels don’t emit light which creates a great ratio for contrast. Unlike other OLED TVs by LG, the 55EG9100 has several remarkable features, such as motion interpolation, 3D and a wider color range. The TV is also able to automatically adjust brightness levels based on what is playing on the screen. The TV is also able to improve poor resolution media for better user experience. Because the TV can maintain good colors, it views well even from an angle and there is no reflection. While the sound is good overall, the bass is poor so you might not be able to crank up the volume. Lastly, the remote is well designed and can also be used as a mouse pointer.

The Good and the Bad
Overall, the 55EG9100 is a great machine and OLED has definitely revolutionized the TV world. The TV offers great viewing angles and the uniformity of pure black is perfect. It also has great response time and is flicker-free.

However, the luminosity isn’t great because when there is too much white on the screen, it becomes less luminous. Also, even though the screen doesn’t reflect, there is still a purple tint when there is bright lighting. Lastly, while there is perfect uniformity in black, it’s not so much uniform in other dark colors.

Conclusion
The OLED technology of the LG 55EG9100 makes it stand out in the crowd. It has significantly improved the TV experience and for people who want a high-end LCD TV of the same size, it makes sense to invest in the LG 55EG9100.

Photo courtesy: LG

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LG 65EF9500: Lg’s Best yet?

Posted on 23 November 2015

LG has come out with one of his its best televisions yet, the LG 65EF9500. It’s a 65″ flat screen TV with OLED technology that offers extraordinary contrast, great color and design with a brilliant webOS. However, the TV does have limited brightness and it comes with a rather heavy price tag. Let’s take a closer look to see if it’s worth the money.

The Look and Feel
The LGEF9500 has a premium look and it’s remarkably slim. It has a border of only 0.4 inches, making it all screen. It has curved edges and while it is all black, it does have a little bit of silver glancing through the rim. The LG logo is located on the bottom of the screen and it is illuminated with a backlight that can be dimmed or turned off. Behind the logo are the controls of the TV. The top of the TV is only 0.25″ thick while the bottom is 2″ thick to accommodate ports for power supply and inputs.

The TV can be mounted on the wall with a bracket or placed on a stand. The back of the TV and the TV’s cord are white, which is a rather unusual choice by LG. The LG Magic Remote is bigger than its sister models, and features a scroll wheel.

Features
LG is the only manufacturer that sells OLED TVs. OLED, or Organic Light-Emitting Diode, is an efficient and eco-friendly technology that allows TVs to be much slimmer than LCD or Plasma. LG 65EF9500 is an OLED TV that is available in sizes between 55″ to 65″. OLED’s picture quality is miles ahead of LCD or Plasma’s picture quality because each sub-pixel in an OLED TV projects illumination.

The LG 65EF9500 also features 4K resolution. While the 4K resolution doesn’t make too much of a difference in 2D material, it makes passive 3D look great. The TV comes with two sets of passive 3D glasses to allow users to experience 4K resolution. The TV is also HDR compliant, which means it can accept HDR signals from devices that provide 4K resolution technology.

The Good and the Bad
The LG 65EF9500 has an impeccably slim design that makes it all screen. The picture quality and contrast performance is the best there is and can be no longer compared to LCD or Plasma technology. Moreover, the TV’s webOS interface is extremely user-friendly and makes it easy to find content. However, in bright light, the TV seems to have a shadow down its sides. And while the OLED technology is eco-friendly, it is way more expensive than LCD TVs of the same size. It also lacks uniformity in light output and video processing.

Conclusion
The OLED technology of the LG 65EF9500 makes it stand out in the crowd. It has significantly improved picture quality and for someone investing in a high-end LCD TV of the same size, it makes sense to opt for the LG 65EF9500.

Photo courtesy: LG

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Raumfeld One S Review

Posted on 19 November 2015

If you are looking for a wireless and water-resistant speaker, then your search is over! Sonos has just come out with the Raumfeld One S that has a bass response better than larger speakers. The most attractive feature of the speaker is that it is waterproof so you can easily use it in the kitchen or bathroom. So let’s have a closer look.

The Look and Feel
The design of Raumfeld One S is pretty minimalistic and somehow that is what makes it look so sleek. The speaker is available in two colours of black or white. The front and sides are covered with a black acoustic cloth, while the rest is in plastic.

To make the speaker water resistant, it comes with a rubber stopper that is used to block all ports. All of the speaker’s control buttons are located on the top.

Features
The speaker is able to connect to Wi-Fi and also has an Ethernet port, but doesn’t work via Bluetooth. Also, it doesn’t run on battery, which means its portability is limited. The speaker supports an amazing high-resolution of 24-bit/192 kHz files. It can be controlled with an app from any smartphone. The app is fairly easy to use and is also designed to be used on tablets.

The speaker is user-friendly with very minimal steps for setup. Plug in the speaker, press the setup button, connect to Wi-Fi, download the app on your phone and the speaker is ready to blast some music. While the speaker is designed to be used in a small room, kitchen or bathroom, its bass energy is so great that it can be used in larger living areas as well.

The Good and the Bad
One obvious pro is that for a small speaker the Raumfeld One S has great bass. It is water resistant so you can easily place it in the washroom or kitchen while you finish your chores.

Since it is not a Bluetooth speaker, you can’t use the existing apps on your phone to play music. Moreover, it has very limited streaming services, including lack of radio support. It also can’t be used outdoors because it is not battery operated.

Conclusion
Overall, the Raumfeld One S is a great design, especially if you are looking for something that is splash-proof. For the size and price of the product, it is a great Wi-Fi speaker to purchase.

Photo courtesy: Rumfeld

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V-Moda Crossfade Wireless Review

Posted on 16 November 2015

V-Moda has come out with a new wireless headphone, Crossfade Wireless, as a sequel to its very popular headphones, Crossfade M-100. The headphones are very heavy-duty and while it has wireless usage, it also can also be used wired. The headphones can run wireless for up to 12 hours, but because of the battery it is a fairly heavy pair of headphones. So let’s have a closer look.

The Look and Feel
The headphones are black and the design is fairly identical to the Crossfade M-100. Of course, since its wireless, the headphone had to be slightly modified to fit in the battery (it cannot be replaced by the user). The battery is located in the left ear cup and runs for 12 hours.

The headphones are pretty heavy, weighing almost 10.3 ounces. The design and quality is exceptional and the box includes a protective case for storage. The Crossfade Wireless headphones come with a one year warranty and you can replace damaged headphones at fifty percent of the cost. Optional accessories for the headphones can also be purchased, including BoomPro mic for professionals, CoilPro cable, 1/3-button cables, VAMP DAC/amp and XL cushions for the ear caps. The cushions are recommended if you prefer deeper padding and more comfort.

Features
The wireless feature is not the only thing that makes this headphone great. It is also designed to work unpowered as a regular analog headphone. The sound quality of the headphone and microphone is great when used wireless, but still not comparable to when it’s wired. The music’s bass and treble on wireless headphones comes off a little hyped while wired headphones offered more depth and clarity. This is why a lot of V-Moda customers still prefer the Crossfade M-100.

The Good and the Bad
For a wireless headphone, the Crossfade Wireless is definitely a premium product. Surprisingly, V-Moda has kept the price of its wireless headphones lower than its wired headphones, which makes it a great purchase.

However, with the added battery component, the Crossfade Wireless is fairly heavy to wear and without the extra cushion the ear cups can be very uncomfortable.

Conclusion
V-Moda will make a happy customer because their customer service is impeccable. They even cater to customer’s customization needs. There is no doubt that the Crossfade Wireless is one of the premium wireless headphones out there.

Photo courtesy: V-Moda

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HTC One M9 – a Gorgeous Smartphone That Offers Improved Software and Speed

Posted on 09 November 2015

Inheriting its predecessor’s strong speakers and gorgeous metal design, the HTC One M9 features a sharp, bright display and runs the latest Android 5.0 Lollipop. It also features expandable storage, making it one of the few flagship phones to do so. To know more about this stunning smartphone, read on as we review the HTC One M9:

Design
With a design scheme that is quite similar to the M8, the HTC One M9 has a gorgeous metal body, with “BoomSound” speakers housed below and above the display. The back is smoothly rounded, where the top and bottom is traversed by plastic lines, just like on the M8 and M7. Featuring a 5-inch display, the power button rests on the right-hand side of the phone, just below the volume buttons. However, it must be said that having all three buttons in one line could take some time getting used to.

Visually, the M9 is not that different, but it still feels as luxurious as its predecessor. The microSD card slot and nano-SIM card slot are tucked into the metal edge, which can be extracted with a SIM tool. A potent 20-megapixel camera sits at the back of the smartphone, while a 4-megapixel Ultrapixel sensor rests at the front.

Features & Specifications
The M9 comes with a customized look of the Android 5.0 Lollipop, along with the latest version of the skin Sense 7. Pretty much everything is quite similar to the Sense 6 used on the M8. However, what are different are the customizations options offered, which are a bit deeper and allow you to alter almost anything.

Powered by a 64-bit octa-core Snapdragon 810 processor, along with 3GB of RAM, it comes as no surprise that the M9 is a capable device. Running demanding games like Asphalt 8 and image editing software like Adobe Photoshop Express is a breeze. However, the only concern is the battery. It runs great in standby mode, but when you are actually doing stuff, the power disappears quickly.

Conclusion
If you are an Android fan, who loves easy-to-use, beautiful, and well-built smartphones, then the HTC One M9 is one phone you should definitely consider purchasing!

Photo credit: HTC

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Asus Chromebook Flip C100: What It Lacks in Features, It More Than Makes Up in Price

Posted on 04 November 2015

A long battery life, a novel design, and a reasonable price tag, the Asus Chromebook Flip C100 does have its share of appeal. It is one of the most innovative Chromebooks to date. It is currently priced at $249. The Flip C100 is an odd mix of high-end features and low-end components. Despite this, the design has a premium feel to it. It is slim and lightweight with a solid aluminum body. The 10.1-inch 1,280 x 800 pixel display comes with a touchscreen, which is a rare feature in laptops in this price range.

Perhaps the most distinctive design feature of this Chromebook is its ability to fold 360o and function as a tablet, something rarely seen in laptops and almost completely nonexistent in other Chromebooks. The device runs on a Rockchip ARM-based CPU which offers sufficient power to run basic tasks, like web surfing, without any inconvenience. It offers 2 GB of RAM, a meager 16 GB of storage space, and runs on Chrome OS. Compared to other laptops and Chromebooks in this price range , the battery life is great, enough to last 12 hours on a single charge.

The notebook has a number of drawbacks. The touchscreen can be unresponsive and shutter at times. In some cases, the CPU performs miserably even when compared to low-end Windows notebooks. When using in tablet mode, the small screen makes it hard to work with the onscreen keyboard. Since it is a Chromebook, it limited in its functions. Web-based tools, such as Gmail and Netflix, work great, but other applications, like Photoshop and Microsoft Office, will not work as they are incompatible.

It is certainly not a replacement for a Windows laptop but still overall the Chromebook is a good device for web related activities and with a compact design and long battery life, a good companion for your travels. It is the best notebook you will find at this price.

Photo courtesy: Asus

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