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Thank you for the recent ratings! I try to rate back as much as possible and have seen some great reviews lately

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since 12/03/2011


Apple iPad mini 16GB Wi-Fi 11/08/2013

iPad mini - a good thing in a small package

Apple iPad mini 16GB Wi-Fi iPad Mini 16GB Review Summary When my partner asked for a tablet for her birthday, once I realised she didn't mean a box of paracetamol, I started to look around. With all the big name brands now releasing their own technology into the world, including Google and Amazon, I wasn’t sure whether to stick with the Apple product or see if the others were better. In the end I decided to stick with the smaller, thinner version of the original iPad and here’s why. iPad Mini Although the mini just looks like a smaller version of the original Apple iPad, the company say it was infact built from the bottom up and is very different. Although I’m not too experienced in the tablet world I will take their word for it. However, having looked at the competition such as the Kindle and the Google Nexus, the one thing that stood out for me was the design. The iPad mini looks much slicker than the others in the market with a design matching the various products in the range such as the iPhone. It has the usual rounded edges and although light, feels heavy enough that you know it won’t simply snap in half. Size The iPad ,mini if 200mm high by 134mm wide which makes it just about feasible to fit into a back pocket. You might need to stretch your pocket slightly but believe me it does fit in there. If not, it is the perfect size to fit in your handbag or manbag to carry around at all times. My partner uses hers on the commute to work and for me this is the impeccable use for the iPad mini. It ...

Lenovo G580 2689 07/10/2012

Lenovo - the unknown laptop brand....

Lenovo G580 2689 Lenovo G580 2689 Introduction With the evolution of the ‘I-generation,’ the need for laptops seems to have gone in the opposite direction with everything being about Angry Birds, Apps, Facebook and Twitter. However, I am a relatively simple man when it comes to technology and like to have a piece of equipment with a keyboard and mouse (call me old-fashioned if you like). After years of error messages popping up on my Toshiba laptop I decided to try and find something that would suit my basic needs. I was delighted to see that with the modern releases focussing more on tablets, there was a large variety of laptops available at reasonable prices, one of the most popular being the Lenovo G580. This was not a brand I had ever heard but with numerous five star reviews it was worth a bit of a risk, coming with a specification just as I required. Better yet, it was red! Lenovo G580 2689 I have generally always stuck to known brands when it comes to technology but with my laptop market research, I found that the likes of Dell, Samsung, Sony and Toshiba seemed quite overpriced or had too much functionality for what I do on the laptop, which is essentially writing and browsing the web. Although slightly nervous in the process, I took the plunge on the unknown Lenovo. Lenovo Brand Looking at the Lenovo website, the company appears to operate a lot like Dell, offering different specifications to meet the needs of the end user. The’’’ ‘G series’ ‘’’ are built to be reliable and ...

York C101 Heritage Upright Cycle 15/09/2012

York get you on ya bike!

York C101 Heritage Upright Cycle Introduction I am a bit of a fitness fanatic and enjoy getting out and about under the rays of the sun for a steady run along the coast or a bike ride through the woods. However, living in the UK, the sun can be quite elusive for around nine months of the year which is what led me to the York C101 Exercise Bike. After two weeks of rain, I was feeling somewhat unfit, having my regular tennis matches called off, football pitches waterlogged and cycle paths turned into huge bogs. Let’s face it, there are some nights when you get in from work and you just don’t want to go out and face the conditions. TheYork C101 is the perfect alternative to keep you ticking over. Also, for my partner who doesn’t enjoy exercise, this is the perfect way to make yourself feel a bit better whilst still being able to watch Corrie and Eastenders! The York C101 Exercise Bike The York C101 is designed for beginners. It doesn’t have anything too fancy and is built to do exactly what it says on the tin, exercise. You can hop on the bike with any programming of gadgets or gizmos and just pedal until your heart’s content. Product specification • 8 levels of magnetic resistance -You can give the pedals more or less tension to make your routine easier and harder • Manual adjustment magnetic resistance • Height adjustable seat -It goes quite high if you are very tall although this isn’t an issue for my vertically challenged self • LCD console monitors: Time, Speed, Distance, Scan, Calories (estimate) ...

Elevator (DVD) 09/09/2012

Elevator - tense and gripping? Not really.

Elevator (DVD) Movie only review Introduction When looking for a decent action/thriller movie, my search on IMDB brought me to Elevator. Those of you that use IMDB for movie information will know that their ratings are generally quite realistic and seeing Elevator with 6 out of 10 (at the time) was reasonably encouraging for the genre. Granted, the title and summary didn’t come across as particularly awe inspiring but it was worth a viewing on a miserable Sunday afternoon. Elevator This quick overview of the movie probably won’t really sell it to you but please persist as I can assure you the review that follows is exceptional! Elevator is a 2011 release from Director Stig Svendsen, who prior to this had only released short films. The cast (you’ll do well to recognise any of these by name!) includes Christopher Backus who has appeared in various TV show cameos and some unknown movies, Anita Briem who played Jane Seymour in the TV Series “The Tudors” and John Getz who you will recognise from playing bit parts in a numbers of movies over the last couple of decades. The premise of the film surprisingly revolves around an elevator. A group of people, who at first we haven’t met, are invited to a party on the top floor of a building, for which they must take an elevator to get to. I believe the building is on Wall Street from the IMDB description but don’t recall this getting mentioned but either way it’s a long way up. Nine people get into the elevator on the way to a penthouse party but ...

Hotel Miramonte Vip Inn, Colares 28/08/2012

Be a VIP at the Miramonte Sintra

Hotel Miramonte Vip Inn, Colares Introduction Prior to 2012, Portugal was one of the few countries that I had never visited, mainly because my affiliation with tourists flocking to The Algarve every summer just to top up their tan. However, when a friend of mine who hails from the small village of Colares on the Portuguese coast asked if I’d like to go for a break, it was quite difficult to turn down and I allowed my probably unfounded stereotypes to slip by the wayside. My friend (let’s call him Mr Pink), usually stays with friends on his annual visit but unfortunately, with my partner and myself in tow, this was not an option. That meant we had to find a reasonably priced hotel, as close to the village as possible, stumbling across the Miramonte via Miramonte website My first impression of the hotel from it’s website that it offered the bare basics, looking plain from the outside with quite dull looking rooms. It didn’t help that the photographs seem to be taken when there was no sun (even though this part of Portugal is generally at over 30 degrees!). However, it offered the most for our budget so we decided to take a chance. Reviews on the likes of Trip Advisor were also quite strong compared to some of the other local hotels. Getting there The Miramonte is situated on the outskirts on a town called Sintra, just over an hour from the centre of Lisbon (which is where you fly to). The motorways were very clear and the trip was incredibly easy. I would recommend hiring a car if going to the ...

Panasonic Lumix DMC-LS5 27/08/2012

Lumix LS5 - neat and tidy budget camera

Panasonic Lumix DMC-LS5 Introduction I have always been lazy when it comes to taking photographs but as I’ve started to get a little bit older and the faithful memory and begun to fade, a camera has become something of a necessity to recall my life events. Besides which, it suddenly struck my partner and myself that we only seemed to have three photos of ourselves in the three years that we’ve been in a relationship! When looking for something that was small, compact and within a minimal budget, the Panasonic Lumix LS5 kept popping up towards the top of online reviews. I have been delighted with my purchase so. The Camera I’ll start with the technology bit. To be honest, I don’t really know if a lot of these numbers are good for a budget camera but compared to others, the numbers seemed high. To clarify, I’m not a technophobe but have always stood by the philosophy that ‘if it ain’t broke don’t fix it.’ The product specification for the Lumix LS5 is as follows: • 14.1 megapixels • Optical 5x zoom • Optical image stabiliser • Built in memory • JPEG file format • USB 2.0 (High Speed) • Requires 2xAA batteries • 2.7” TF LCD (4:3) LCD Monitor • CD Picture software Look and feel The small black camera looks very smart and modern with the large LCD screen and Lumix logo. As well as this, it hardly weighs anything making it very easy for tourists to carry around. My LS5 came on offer with a carry case but at most stores this won't be available so you will need to purchase the case separately. ... 09/05/2012

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The Divide (DVD) 09/05/2012

Good or bad movie? I'm divided

The Divide (DVD) Introduction Film only review The Divide is a 2011 thriller release from the creative brain of director Xavier Gens who has Hitman (2007) as the only other notable movie in his repertoire. As a lover of thrillers, the concept of The Divide sounded like it was right up my street and was well worth a watch. The Divide is a relatively low budget film which is perhaps best described as an incredibly grim Lord of the Flies without a conch and is arguably the most grim film I’ve watched for a long time. This post-apocalyptic horror (don’t be fooled by the sci-fi like opening scene) is full of gore, surprise and ‘look away’ moments. The plot summary The Divide centres on New York in quite an impressive opening scene where the city has been demolished by a nuclear bomb. A group of people in an apartment block head for the basement in an attempt to survive, leaving us with a young child, two women and, as we soon find out, a group of very unlikeable men. Among the survivors are highly strung mother Marilyn (Rosanna Arquette) and her young daughter Wendi (Abbey Thickson), level-headed recovering drug addict Eva (Lauren German), her somewhat shy and retiring, other half Sam (Iván González), and other panicking guys played by, among others, Milo Ventimiglia (ex-Heroes), Ashton Holmes (A History Of Violence) and Courtney B Vance The basement (or bunker really) is occupied by the janitor, Mickey who from the outset comes across as crazy as they come. Straight away, it is very apparent that ...

Corinthian Pro Stars Rooney Figure 09/05/2012

A good looking Wayne Rooney?

Corinthian Pro Stars Rooney Figure Introduction As a huge football fan from a young age, Corinthian released their Prostar range of models in the early nineties, like many other young boys, I was in my absolute element. I have some quite clear memories of going to the local toy shop and getting my mum to buy me loads of these things (they were much better than Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles!!). Not only could I watch my favourite sports stars on television and read about them in the news, I could own them as well! Corinthian Prostars Firstly, I should apologise as you’ll notice I’ve been reviewing a few of these models recently. However, hopefully it brings across my passion for collecting and for football. This may seem quite similar to my other reviews on Joe Cole & John Terry but I’ll try to distinguish as best as I can! Corinthian Prostars are small models of soccer players, slightly less than 5 inches tall in most cases. They are designed as either collectibles or toys depending on your preference. This Wayne Rooney product is specifically made for the collector market and comes in a special edition blister pack complete with factfile and quizcard Since the early 1990s, Corinthian have released a number of models, starting with solely English and Scottish football clubs and slowly developing into National teams and European clubs. In the mid 2000s, the Prostar sets seem to have stopped being released, gradually increasing their value and seeing markets emerge on the likes of eBay. All in all, there were ...

Corinthian Pro Stars J Cole Figure 08/05/2012

Corinthian letting themselves down with Joe

Corinthian Pro Stars Terry Figure 07/05/2012

More of a collection than a toy!

Corinthian Pro Stars Terry Figure Introduction As a huge football fan from a very early age, when the Corinthian Prostar collection was launched in the early 1990s, I was in my element. Not only could I watch my favourite stars on television but I could now play with them myself! Corinthian Prostars Corinthian Prostars were released in a number of series. The original models, as far as I remember, were sold in 4 packs of specific teams (English teams only) in the only nineties. However, as time went on, more and more series were released up to around number 40 in the mid 2000s before they seemingly stop being released. There are literally hundreds on the market, all with different values depending on how rare they are. Since then there have been various other collections like Microstarz and Soccerstarz which are effectively the same thing but smaller and a trend towards collector cards such as Match Attax as opposed to the models. I can only assume that the market started to twindle within the recession!! You won't find the full boxes of English Premier League teams like you used to. The product - a collectors view Alongside Prostars, Corinthian also released special edition Blister Packs like this John Terry product. Although this is in the toys category, in is really a collectors item. These products are intended to stay in their original packaging and increase in value with time. I'm not sure of volumes, but the blister packs were also released as limited editions to ensure that the buyer had a collectible ...

Trixie Scratch Pillar Lorca for Corners 30/04/2012

Save your furniture from the cat!

Trixie Scratch Pillar Lorca for Corners Introduction When we first got our cat, as a 6 month old kitten, the first thing she did when going into the Living room was go straight for our lovely fabric sofas. I used to love my sofa but after a couple of weeks it was virtually decimated. Having threatened to evict the cat from the house, my partner convinced me to try the Trixie Scratch Pillar Lorca for corners first. Why do cats scratch? Firstly, the science bit. Cats like to scratch as a natural habit in the wild, in order to sharpen their claws, to ensure they are up to catching their prey. It also makes sure they don’t weaken and potentially fall off. However, this isn’t particularly suitable for a domestic pet, especially a house cat, such as our little Lily. The Trixie Scratch Pillar is designed as an alternative, providing something that resembles a tree like object, specifically for the cat to scratch. The product The Trixie Scratch Pillar Lorca for corners comes in at 37x27x75cm and therefore doesn’t take up a huge amount of space. It is designed for cats of all ages although my thoughts are that it is slightly big for kittens and you could probably start off with a specialised kitten starter pack (you can get these for £50 or so at Pets at Home including scratching post, litter tray, bowl etc). For me, at about £30, this scratching post is a little pricey. The reason for this is that the cat uses it occasionally but doesn’t interact with the post and often turns back to the sofas, despite my squirting of a ...

Hotel Jarry Confort, Paris 26/02/2012

Get what you pay for at Hotel Jarry

Boggle Flash 22/02/2012

The new generation of word game with Boggle Flash

Dreamies Cat Treats with Chicken 22/02/2012

Meeeoowww - chicken to dream about

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