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Giving opinions for several years and showing like a fine vintage

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since 11/07/2000


Delonghi EC 152 21/10/2011

What A Drink this latte - Milk and Coffee!

Delonghi EC 152 I've been a more upmarket coffee connoisseur for a while now but going out for what I like to call a 'posh' coffee isn't always viable. So I decided to go for a coffee machine to pump my espresso, froth my milk and help me make the face of Jesus in the milk froth (still not managed it), all in the comfort of my own kitchen. Looking around there is a widely varied array of coffee machines out there and most will sent you back a pretty penny, an expensive piece of kit if you don't get the intended results. (yes bread maker owners I'm talking to you). The Delonghi EC152 is probably one of the cheapest coffee makers you'll find on the market at this time. It can be picked up for about £60 online, of course the adage 'you get what you pay for' normally applies to electricals. However I saw quite a few online reviews from users who had pretty good things to say about the machine. So when I stumbled across the machine on Ebay for £40 I decided to bite the bullet and get brewing. The machine is quite compact, small in footprint and looks quite decent in its design. It won't stand out like a sore thumb in a modern kitchen. Of course for the money you're not going to get a sleek finish, polished parts and all. It's mostly plastic on the outside but hey that's expected. The machine is pretty simple in concept. A cover on the top opens up to reveal a removable 1-litre water container plus storage your coffee basket. Other than that there's your coffee basket handle, a basket and a ...

Yeo Valley Organic Fat Free Vanilla Bio Live Yogurt 23/07/2011

Yeo Check Yourself

Yeo Valley Organic Fat Free Vanilla Bio Live Yogurt You've probably seen the TV ads for Yeo Valley with a bunch of farmers who rap about yeo valley. Its kinda attention grabbing so when it came to getting some free stuff from, I decided to get some as there's no finer taste than free yoghurt. At least you'd think so. Looking at some of the other opinions on here, yeo is classed as a good tasting bit of dairy. Well I whipped the top off a 450g tub of Vanilla and waited for the taste sensation. Yeo Valley organic yoghurt is fat free and labelled as probiotic yoghurt. Now fat free normally gives you the impression that the product is good for a healthy lifestyle. Yes the fat content is pretty much non-existent however the sugar content is pretty high. A 150g serving contains over 21g of sugar, close to a quarter of your recommended sugar intake. With this in mind I was surprised that this yoghurt tasted pretty crappy. I found it to have a sour taste and be pretty watery in its consistency. The vanilla flavour is pretty weak. In comparison to other vanilla yoghurts such as activia etc, I found it incredibly underwhelming. Of course you could say that I just got a bit of an iffy pot but since I had another in the fridge, I can confirm the taste is just the same. Price wise you can normally pick up a pot of this for around a pound in the supermarket, sometimes a little more. For me the taste is not worth the price. For example if I was faced with spending £1 on this or £1.50 on some muller corners then I would ... 20/07/2011

Meals On Deals It's always great to get a bargain and since the advent of the internet I have been blessed with discounts, freebies and stuff. Social Media is a buzz phrase in current times, Social Buying is an emerging term and one that can be applied to such sites as Groupon. The concept is simple, the site sells deals for other businesses offering products and services at heavily discounted rates. The UK site has two levels of deals, one is a national deal where there is usually something like discounted holiday or voucher for an online retailer. The other is a local deal where all the major cities in the UK will list different deals for their local area. An example of this would be paying £15 for a haircut and style at a local Salon worth £50. Some deals require a certain amount of purchases to become valid but I have noticed that in recent months this isn't something that really applies anymore. The site is pretty simple to use with the deals presented clearly and any terms and conditions listed up front without being relegated to small print. Navigation between national and local deals is straightforward. Buying the deal works in the same way as the usual e-commerce checkout method. The only difference is that you don't get the discount straight after purchase. Each deal will have a closing date, most lasting 24 hours. After the deal closes you normally receive a discount code and PDF voucher. Recently I have made purchases such as a £50 voucher for for under ...

Original Source Men XXX Black Mint Shower Gel 20/07/2011

More Mint Than The Royal

Original Source Men XXX Black Mint Shower Gel The glowing deep green of the bottle calls to you from the supermarket shelf. It's not shy, bold letters exclaim that 8899 real mint leaves helped make it. That's some claim and I do wonder if close to 9000 mint leaves would even fit into a 250ml bottle. But it's all in the wording, they helped to make it. What am I blabbing on about? Why it's Original Source shower gel and this time it's XXX. Now there's nothing naughty about this shower gel, the XXX just highlights the powerful effects this gel will have. Original Source make a great range of bathroom gels, shampoos and such taking in natural ingredients. All of them look sexy in the shower and most smell fantastic. XXX with its extra strong Black Mint certainly gives you an experience whilst soaping up. Let me tell you now, it refreshes the parts that most shower gels can't reach. Imagine sluggishly stumbling into the shower after a few the night before. One rub around with this on your body and you'll definitely be more wide awake than a kids TV show on TV AM back in the 80's. It's a strange sensation; your skin feels like it's burning clean but with no pain. It leaves you with an amazing fresh tingle over some parts of your body; yes I'll say that the private parts are the most served by the green stuff. On a hot day I would imagine this comes into it's own as it certainly makes me feel cooler once I step out of the shower. In the winter the extreme freshness of this shower gel might not pull you through the cold ...

Acer Aspire 5336-T353G32Mnkk 19/07/2011

Pocket Money Laptop

Acer Aspire 5336-T353G32Mnkk When I ventured in the working world back in the mid-nineties, laptop computers were not common place. You had to pay a fair premium to have one, at least £1500 for something remotely decent. Of course back then a solitary gigabyte of hard drive was the norm and also came at a premium. Of course with the movement of time, technology refines and adapts. Now laptops are probably more in use than your desktop computer of old thanks to wi-fi. My mum and dad were in the market for a new computer, all they use it for is internet so naturally the requirement was to spend little money and not have a spec that wouldn’t be utilized. The job to find such a laptop was put in my hands and I immediately looked on Amazon who always seem to have some of the best prices on laptops. Acer is a brand where you get good spec for your money. I’ve had my acer for just over a year and for £350 it’s proved fantastic value. Top of the charts was the Acer 5336, the price was a few pence under £260 delivered. Honestly I had never seen a laptop hit that kind of price point and to be fair, Amazon were selling it for a good deal less than other online retailers. So what sort of spec would this peanut change give you? Intel Celeron T3500 Cpu 3Gb Ram, 320Gb Hard Driver 15.3” Screen Integrated Webcam, Wi-fi, Windows 7, DVD-Writer Of course that sort of spec isn’t going to be running your games and be suitable for a lot of graphics work. But for running simple tasks, online browsing and general computer ...

Nokia E63 08/08/2010

It's A Blueberry Not A Blackberry

Nokia E63 Some people live or die by their mobile phones. I’m old enough to remember a time when having a mobile was something quite new and only for a few (Late nineties, I’m not ancient) Fast forward a few years and now everyone’s got one. This year I was due for an upgrade from three but I have no real desire to have something which will cook my dinner for me and tuck me in at night like an Iphone. The notion of a Nokia E63 was offered to me and I liked the look of it. It has similarities to the Blackberry models but perhaps lacks the social kudos. I went for it because it was a good phone for only a tenner a month. The slimline shape and weight of it was good and the qwerty keyboard was a bonus for replying to my e-mails out in the field. Using the phone is pretty simple, the screen is crisp and offers adequate size. The front menu has a range of shortcut icons for things like e-mail, facebook etc. I was able to set-up my e-mail accounts with real ease. Using the keyboard will take any user a little to get the hang of. You’ve got a lot of keys to fit into a small area. Changing case and typing letters is a little awkward and not ideal for those who like to speed type. I have to press a shift button before every character if I want a number or a capital letter. Browsing the internet is fairly straightforward. I’m sure it doesn’t have the fluid browsing of apple’s products but it does the job for me. This was the first time I used a mobile for internet use, let’s just say I ...

Acer Aspire 5532-314G32Mn 12/07/2010

Ace's High

Acer Aspire 5532-314G32Mn One of my first jobs was in a computer store back in the mid-nineties. Back then laptops were reserved for those who needed to travel and not really a home user product. Needless to say you wouldn't get any change out of £1000, usually you'd need to pay a lot more than that! But now times they have a changed and the laptop is more accessible for the home user and a popular choice thanks to wireless internet. I have been using a Toshiba laptop for the past few years and it had served its purpose well. But things progress and I was needing a little more power at my fingertips. Looking around, I found a minefield of specs and varying prices. One I kept coming back to is the Acer 5532, at the time it was just under £400 on Amazon. But no it's dropped to under £350 and so I went for it. Acer may look like a cheaper brand than your other familiar names but they've been producing computer hardware for a number of years, I have known other people who've owned one and my brothers had one for about 18-months and it's been a great machine for the money. I ordered mine on Amazon for about £343, the price fluctuates a bit at times but generally you'll be able to get it for under £350. If you look around the web you'll find some varying specs for the 5532 model. Some coming with less hard drive space and only 3gb of memory The spec of the machine I bought is as follows. AMD Athlon 64 X2 Processor 15.6" HD LCD Screen ATI Radeon HD3200 Graphics 4GB Memory, 320 GB ...

Zombieland (Blu-ray) 15/06/2010

Resident Chuckle

Zombieland (Blu-ray) Imagine a world where civilisation is biting each other, eating each other, running around like mindless drones without thought and generally killing any notion of the human race as we know it. No it's not the centre of Newcastle on a Saturday night. This is Zombieland where a strain of mad cow disease found it's way into a burger and turned the majority of the American population into mindless bloodthirsty zombies. Columbus (Jesse Eisenberg) is a nerdy college student who is left to wander the homeland alone; surviving by sticking to a list of rules he has compiled in order to thwart the zombies. On his travels he meets the gun toting Tallahassee (Woody Harrelson), a man who loves taking out zombies any which way he can on his search to find a twinkie. The pair joins forces on a road trip through the zombie-infested world and it's a case of opposites attracting, as they're only the two people left. Until they meet two sisters who are masters in the art of the con. The film pairs the two duos off in a game of survival until they realize they've all got to get along in order to survive. Zombieland works because it always maintains a good sense of humour throughout. It's not laugh out loud funny but at every turn there's some nice touches. Right from the outset I was drawn in by the novel way Columbus' rules are portrayed in a video game style. This style pops up in little flourishes throughout the film to nice comic effect. They also get the casting spot in with Eisenberg ...

Muller Light Lemon Cheesecake Flavour 13/06/2010

The Pot That Refreshes

Muller Light Lemon Cheesecake Flavour Recently on my dawdling around Morrisons, after a brief bit of fun coasting along the aisle with a shopping trolley I stumbled on a stupendous offer. Twelve Muller Lights for two of your finest English pounds! That's less than twenty pence a yoghurt I thought to myself and proceeded to load up the trolley. Usually with these offers you normally find choice is limited and my powers of deduction came up with the notion that Apricot yoghurt is not really the nations favourite. Anyway Lemon Cheesecake flavour was different from the rest as it came with a sexy black foil top and exclaimed itself as a limited edition. It's like wanting to nibble on that girl you fancy but she's always with someone else at the time. But I digress; I like cheesecake so went for it. This flavour has a bit more of a mousse like texture to it than other Muller Light's but it's still appealing. The colour is a very pale yellowish white. Now for me the flavour is very refreshing and clean. You can taste the lemon but not to the extent where it becomes sour and offputting. The yoghurt also has cheesecake pieces in. You can barely notice them but they are soft biscuity pieces, a nice addition I think. For all you calorie counters out there, these yoghurts are low in fat and a 175g pot weighs in at just over 100 calories. Not too shabby as a desert, of course there are some yoghurts out there lower in calories but they're not as yummy. Now how much more can you write about yoghurt? Well I have ...

Never Back Down (DVD) 12/03/2010

Fight Club 2 - Electric Boogaloo

Never Back Down (DVD) There was once an episode of South Park where the boys went to a ski resort and the whole thing turned into a parody of a naff eighties teen movie. Never Back Down is that episode in cinematic form. Constructed from a box of tricks and cliches that had been gathering dust on the shelf since 1985, this movie offers nothing surprising, nothing original and sadly it’s playing itself seriously. Jake Tyler is a young guy with an anger problem. His dad was an alcoholic and he blames himself for letting his old man behind the wheel that night. But a move away to a new school introduces Jake to an underground fight club. Yes it’s so secret that everyone in school knows about it and everyone views video from them on their mobile at lunch. Amazingly no teachers pick up on this….education standards today huh? Naturally there’s one guy who’s the best, he comes from money, has nice teeth, a big car, nice girlfriend and everyone hangs on to him because he is lame…sorry cool…yes really cool. Of course his dad’s a real dick who has always pushed his son to achieve greatness or something, don’t worry it’s only skirted over in one of the many mind numbing scenes that pepper the plot development. So anyway, Jake gets invited to a party and ends up being duped into a fight with the best guy in school. He get’s his ass handed to him. Humiliated Jake joins a local fighting gym where he get’s trained by a mixed martial arts veteran who of course has a dark past. Of course there are the usual ...

The House Bunny (DVD) 16/01/2010

The Cup Is Heff Full

The House Bunny (DVD) Ok let's get one thing straight. The House Bunny is a pretty ropey movie concept wise and certainly isn't going to win any awards for originality. However sometimes the most inane of movies can be lifted to passable thanks to its star. This is one of those movies. Anna Farris headlines as Shelley, a 27-year old playboy bunny who lives a sun kissed life at the playboy mansion and is pretty naive of the outside world. But just when she thinks she's making the next playboy cover she finds herself tossed out of the mansion by way of a letter on her birthday. With nowhere else to go she finds her way onto a student campus and meets seven girls who's sorority house is going to get closed down because they have no pledges (this is an American thing, it's ok if you don't have a clue!). These girls don't have a clue about anything outside the house, they don't know how to party, don't know how to talk to boys and generally are seen as the uncool kids. But all that changes when Shelley becomes their housemother. Soon the girls are introduced to the ways of throwing a kick-ass party, getting guys to visit and generally feel better about themselves. In true Hollywood fashion, Shelley also realizes that there's more to life in the outside world. Anna Farris is an actress who really deserves to toplining more comedy movies. Her manner is naturally funny and I've been an admirer of her comic skills ever since she came to the fore in the Scary Movie...err movies. In The House Bunny, ...

Notorious (DVD) 16/01/2010

BIG Nothing

Notorious (DVD) Bio-pics are always a rough territory to tread upon. The majority of them are pretty much standard fare with production values more suited to television than the big screen. Of course there are some exceptions such as Walk The Line and Ray but for everyone of them there's a horror show such as The Michael Jackson Story or that one about Roseanne. Anyway it's been over ten years since Christopher Wallace was shot dead in a drive-by shooting. More wildly known as The Notorious B.I.G, the big guy rapper was at the height of his game having achieved millions of record sales after previously dealing drugs on the street at a young age and spending a stint in the clink. All good stuff for a story of his life so why is the end result a standard by the numbers affair with doesn't really go into any depth about anything? Well I guess when one of the producers is his mother and Puff Daddy also exec produces then you're not going to get a story showing the ugly side of someone who was close to them. The film starts out by showing Biggie as a young boy being brought up by his mother in the right way, but he gets involved in drug dealing as it's the only way the other guys his age are making money in the neighbourhood. Anyway this gets him put inside where he refines his lyrics before committing them to tape. Sean 'Puff Daddy' signs him to his fledgling record label and after some touring and stuff they climb the ladder to multi-platinum status. Along the way Biggie is shown as a bit ...

FastTrack - Nullsoft WinAmp 03/12/2009

This Goes Up To 11

FastTrack - Nullsoft WinAmp A nice bit of music breaks the silence of being a keyboard warrior. But taking your pic from your collection of MP3's can soon get tiresome and samey. That's where listening to the radio comes in. Now I'm sure I'm not the only one who can't stand the inane witterings of some of the new Radio 1 presenters during the daytime, I mention no names of course but some make me want to put 'cotton' in my ears. Anyway I digress, if you have broadband connection then internet radio is the way to go, there's an amazing array of music out there streaming 24/7, you just have to know how to capture it. My new weapon of choice is Winamp. This free piece of software has been around for several years now and I remember having a copy back in the day of MP3 infancy and when Napster was all the rage. The software allows to to play back MP3's, compile playlists and basically works like Itunes but it looks a little sexier and less memory consuming. Playing back cd's and video etc is pretty much a given for most media players and this one is no different. As long as your music plays fine then there's not much more you can ask. Nope what I like about Winamp is it's online radio channels that I've been really getting into over the past week. Right now I've been listening to an alternative rock channel and so far I've had Red Hot Chili Peppers offering up a track from the Coneheads soundtrack before melting into the sublime Wicked Game from Chris Isaak. The choice is incredibly diverse ... 27/10/2009

Gadzooks Asos! Clothes shopping can be taxing at the best of times, I usually struggle to find anything that really catches me fancy. I’m not a fashionista with a large closet full of clobber but occasionally I like to shake up my style. A 25% discount coupon for Asos caught my eye last week on money saving expert so I thought I’d take a look. I was under the impression that it was a site for women’s clothes but after a look I discovered they’ve got a great range of men’s garments from suits to funky undercrackers. The site has a sleek simple look with its products easily accessible through simple category links and options to whittle things down to a certain price range or a particular label. The product information is pretty comprehensive; giving you assorted shots of the clothes, all modelled by chiselled guys who don’t seem to know the meaning of the word fat. But sometimes pictures don’t suffice, so on some products you get a flash video of someone parading down the catwalk with the clothes on. It’s probably the best you’re going to get without being able to try the clothes on in store. At least Asos doesn’t have the fitting room mirrors that make you feel bad about yourself so that’s a big bonus! I spent a long time browsing through all their products. They have a large range of major labels but also have clothes with their own label that come without the designer price tag. Now I’m not saying they’re Primark prices but they are comparable to stores such as Top Shop etc. I’ve ...

Wii Fit (Wii) 24/09/2009

Hello Fat Fighters!

Wii Fit (Wii) You’re probably not asking where I have been for the last couple of months. If you are then god bless ya! The truth is that Wii Fit has consumed the past 100 days and I feel I have now clocked up enough time to give an overall opinion on the product. It all started when trying on a shirt in a changing room, once again I had let myself go and the love handles were staring to become obvious, not good for someone still only 30. I had tried the gym before but frankly they bore me and swimming wasn’t enough to shift the pounds. After looking up various opinion’s on the internet, I decided to buy a Nintendo Wii with the Wii Fit package in an effort to stop piling on the pounds and start looking like a greek god without the gay beard. The Wii Fit package is pretty basic in style, inside the box you’ll find the Balance Board and a copy of the software. - The Balance Board - This is a well-made piece of kit; it’s fairly lightweight but very sturdy. It’s also incredibly simple in design and use. There’s a large power button on the rear that comes on only when the board makes contact with your wii fit console. Other than that it’s all in the software. All you have to do is stand on it and let it show you the way to fighting the bulge. - The Software - The initial set-up will calibrate your board and take your weight as well as height. With this information it gives you your BMI (Body Mass Index) and tells you where you currently stand in the fat stakes thanks to a simple scale. ...
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