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since 06/03/2004


Sony MDS-JE 480 MiniDisc Player & Recorder 20/05/2004

Sony MDS-JE 480

Sony MDS-JE 480 MiniDisc Player & Recorder I bought this minidisk deck from Dixons over a year ago for 130 pounds in order to duplicate CDs to minidisk. I was amazed at the quality of this relatively cheap product immediately. Everything is included in the box to use it such as an arguably to short optical lead and even a pair of RCA leads for the output to the HiFi. Plugging it in took all of 20 seconds and it was ready to run. Even remote control batteries are provided!! Disks can be played by simply inserting one and pressing play. The output is analogue but is indistinguishable from disgital sources and the digital input is superb. I reckon that i can actually improve things such as bass and treble on CD recordings by recording them onto minidisk using the graphical equaliser built into the HiFi. The unit can record normally and in LP2 and LP4 modes giving a total of 320 minutes on a single 80 minute disk at vertually no quality loss. Amazing!!! Once a track has been recorded the unit offers a variety of ways to edit it such as inserting a name, splitting it, combining it with another or re-recording it at a different sound level. Different play modes can be selected such as shuffle and repeat. The remote offers a wide range of reception and is very sensitive. The unit runs on standard 230 V UK manis power and has 1 X optical input, 1 X dual coaxial input and 1 X coaxial output. The player will fit in well with other Sony HiFi separates to make a highly competent home music system. I have been advised ...

Fujifilm FinePix M603 20/05/2004

Fuji Finepix M603

Fujifilm FinePix M603 I bought this camera as a replacement for a much cheaper 'Trust' model and immediately noticed the difference in quality. Since I purchased it when it had only just been released I no doubt paid over the odds for it though i did recieve a free 512mb microdrive with it. The camera can take at up to 6 million pixels with its superb CCD technology so it can be a little heavy on memory usage still i fit a good few hundred on the microdrive card. The camera is capable of recieving both the cheap and large capacity microdrive cards, which i am told is fully compatible with CF type 1 and 2, and the new super fast XD cards. The package includes a 16mb XD card though most people would want to upgrade as soon as possible as access times on these tiny cards are far superior to the microdrive which is actually a small hard disk. As well as excelling in picture quality with perfect colour tones and a very intelligent white balance, the M603 is a very competent video camera offering a frame rate of 30fps in a high quality with audio. My 512mb microdrive fits just over 6 minutes wort of video on it which is great for quick shots which can be used to rip frames from on the cameras huge screen. Just as well really as it has no optical viewfinder. Some people complain about this vastly reducing battery life but this coupled with the power intensive microdrive and the standard NP-60 battery last for a good hour longer than some similar models such as the F601 and it can be upgraded with the ...

Kill Bill Vol.1 (DVD) 20/05/2004

Kill Bill 1

Kill Bill Vol.1 (DVD) Well what can I say? This is certainately the strangest movie I've seen in a while. In typical Tarantino style the plot of the film never really becomes clear until the end as the character keeps having flashbacks to earlier times which gradually explain the story. Essentially it begins with Bill and his gang (The deadly viper assasination squad) attempting to murder the lead character (Uma) at her wedding though, against all odds, she survives to hunt them down one by one to avenge the presumed death of her unborn child. The first volume follows her as she kills the first three people on her list and builds tension well for the new movie. Definately one to watch before seeing the second. Not exactly one to watch as a family but the violence is toned down through its comical portrayal. I believe the show was saved by a good cast giving steady performances. The cast is listed below with the gang nicknames if applicable: Uma Thurman - Name unknown (Black Mamba) Daryl Hannah - Elle Driver (California Mountain Snake) Vivica Fox - Vernita Green (Copperhead) Lucy Liu - O-Ren Ishii (Cottonmouth) Michael Madsen - Budd (Sidewinder) Chiaki Kuriyama - Gogo Yubari David Carradine - Bill Chia Hui Liu - Johnny Mo Julie Dreyfus - Sofie Fatale Sonny Chiba - Hattori Hanzo Michael Bowen - Buck Michael Parks - Earl McGraw Jun Kunimura - Boss Tanaka Directed and written by Quentin Tarantino The movie is not exactly renowned for its special effects which are ...

Imation Corp. CD-R 700 MB 52x 19/05/2004

Imation 700mb CDR

Imation Corp. CD-R 700 MB 52x I bought a set of these disks from an ebay seller at approximately 15p per disk including cases. For that price I wasn't expecting much but i decided to give them a go anyway and was pleasantly suprised to see that the first set worked well without a single failure. They advertise a maximum write speed of 24X which seems pretty realistic and have a nice surface on them which is pretty ink friendly. However, the second batch of these that i tried had a much higher failure rate of three in ten in the same Sony drive. Still for under 15p per disk i can't really complain as the majority of them were great. these really are a bargain and are much faster than some of the unbranded ones flodding the market. Would recommend but try and check drive compatibility. They didn't work to well in my Sony but that may have been a bad batch.

Epson Perfection 610 19/05/2004

Exactly what is says on the label

Epson Perfection 610 I've had this scanner for a few years and have reamined impressed with its solid performance. As with everything i buy i thoroughly researched this scanner before walking into the shop and was convinced that it was the best around for under a hundred quid. It has a USB 1.1 interface (the accepted standard for this class) and with a 1,5ghz CPU performs more than adequately with little time spent waiting around once the scan has finished. Colour depth is fine at 48 bit and tones are realistic. Inside, the scanner is faultless however the outside does look a ittle uninspiring being a simple beige with a single button for a quick scan. Coupled with this is its large size demanding a reasonable sized work surface though i believe that it would be well suited to an office environement well style is not at the top of the list of priorities. It is very competent at what it does and, with few frills such as negative scanning, is a solid and cheap performer with a bundle of useful software to boot.

Epson Stylus Color 600 19/05/2004

Epson stylus colour 600 - reliable workhorse

Epson Stylus Color 600 I bought this printer as an upgrade to the Epson Stylus 400 over 6 years ago with my first computer. Since then it has proved itself time and time again needing absolutely no maintanance other than automated head cleaning routines. Obviously this printer is no longer being produced and offers only fairly low quality photo printing but it is 6 years old. In its time its printed thousands of pages and still has much life left in it. One thing that Epson has always excelled on is its reliability and this printer is no exception showing no signs of giving up despite its age and heavy use. On the downside however, it is very noisy especially when used on a wooden desk and mine has only a parallel interface. However it would make a superb high volume text printer that is very cheap to run with no detrimental effects with cheap third party cartridges.

Compaq V75 17 in 19/05/2004

Compaq V75

Compaq V75 17 in I bought this monitor in a very good factory reconditioned state for a mere 50 pounds. I have had it fior little over a year with absolutey no problems. It has a very easy to use menu system and very good picture clarity. It is the third 17 inch CRT monitor that I have owned and is definately the best with a fast flicker rate leaving the eyes fresh even after prolonged sessions. It is very bright for gaming yet will equally handle text very clearly. Also useful is the integrated single USB port - very good for plugging in a keyboard on a short wire but alternatively an accessible solution for a USB hub to power a host of desk peripherals. A very good monitor for the price despite a slightly larger than average footprint.
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