Archive for August, 2016

By August 11, 2016 Read More →

Logitech G610 Orion Red Review

rgbWhen reviewing a gaming keyboard it is incredibly difficult to actually benchmark a keyboard in some way to say whether or not you have a good or bad keyboard from a score that is accrued through various tests. A keyboard very much boils down to whether or not you like it, can communicate with the easily and it’s comfortable for you to be productive or enjoy some leisure time.

The Logitech G610 is an entirely different keyboard to the Logitech G510.  Where the G510 focused on additional features such as media, LCD screens, gaming profiles and programmable buttons the G610 loses all of that in favour of an entirely new hardware approach and a back to basics gaming experience that is determined to win the user over through performance as opposed to extra features.

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The G610 features Cherry MX mechanical switches. These are favoured by gamers and considered to be a standard as they are more consistent in feel and responsiveness, they can take more abuse than rubber dome keyboards. These low-noise switches have a linear keypress for rapid-fire actuation. Cherry MX switches are rated to over 50 million keystrokes and actuate precisely for a reliable gaming experience.

To be honest I find the G610 is a bit of a let down whenever it comes to included features. I love myself some extra buttons to be able to program for additional functionality on the computer and save for some Media buttons in the top right corner the G610 doesn’t provide any of that.  Of course you can program the function buttons on the top row from F1 to F12, however having some dedicated memory buttons is a great feature that most gamers these days will probably have started to rely on even if it is just for storing Memes. There isn’t even a wrist rest included in the box.

That said I would imagine including extra buttons and features would have ramped up the price of this keyboard drastically. Tearing out the membrane innards of the G510 and putting in a whole mechanical key array would ramp up the costs before you know it.

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How is the performance of a gaming keyboard when of all the media buttons have been removed?  It’s hard going, it takes a while to get used to especially if you have been using something other than a mechanical keyboard before. The travel on each key when pressing is a greater distance and can result in a multitude of errors especially when typing for a long period. When gaming the benefits are noticeable almost immediately.  The slightest touch of a button registers which results in near instantaneous reactions. Hardly ideal for typing a document however once mastered there is nothing quite like tapping away at a keyboard that emits a satisfying clack.

 

The look and feel of the keyboard it’s very simple with almost a no frills approach, aside from the backlight. There’s a lot of fun to be had here as the lighting flickers in uniform depending on how you have the keys set to light up. There is a dedicated button for the backlight however rather than being an on/off button, you have to press the button  number of times to dim the backlight and gradually turn the backlight off. A simple feature of holding the button in to turn the backlight off might be nice as if you leave your computer on 24 hours a day that means the backlight on your keyboard is more than likely going to be on with it. When the computer is locked the keyboard takes it upon itself to display some eye candy, lighting up keys and simulating a wave of light from left to right. The backlight is bright at the highest setting, every key is visible.

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The volume roller is large and responsive, it’s easy to find alongside the rest of the media controls that surround it. Hastily jamming your finger down in that area generally meets with the required function you’re looking for. Various other keyboards on the market have a small congregation of keys that are interlinked, this one goes for large and separate and therefore less room for error.

 

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One of the best features are the legs of this keyboard, there are three options. Laid flat on the rubber feet, setting 4 and setting 8. I am guessing the 4 and 8 are millimetre elevation. Also, cable and the connection between the cable and the keyboard is nicely reinforced. This keyboard will travel well and it built to last.

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Sound wise the keyboard is fairly quiet for a mechanical keyboard, it has a satisfying clack as you tap away, however, if like me you record a podcast fortnightly you have to be vigilant when typing or else the sound of the keys will be almost audible in the recording. As a gamer using a microphone and headphone setup

Logitech has a very simple to use interface when it comes to the software for the keyboard.  Everything is laid out very nicely and is very simple to navigate around. Icons are colourful and explanatory and there is a wealth of options available on how to set up the keyboard for various different profiles. It’s easy to switch between profiles to display various keys being highlighted when using a particular game, these profiles can be amended to the user’s preference or setup from scratch.

Would I carry on using the Logitech G610?  Unlikely, I don’t game as often as I used to and spend much more time writing. In all honesty, I’ll be moving back to the Logitech G510 once I finish writing this. The G610 will go to my stepdaughter who is an avid gamer playing World of Warcraft and League of Legends. The keyboard will easily benefit her and be a welcome upgrade to the aging and noisy Corsair she has been using.

By August 10, 2016 Read More →

Tech Addicts UK Podcast – 10th August 2016 – Linking the Nexus rumours

Podcast logoGareth Myles, Gavin Fabiani-Laymond and Jay Garrett

RSS Link: http://mobiletechaddicts.libsyn.com/rss

Direct Download.

iTunes

Google Play Music

Show Notes

What have you been playing with?

Gareth:

Jay:

Reviewed:

Currently messing with AOC Q2781PQ 1440p monitor and Musaic MP5 and MP10 streamers as well as the Acoustic Energy Aego Sound3ar.

Gavin:

     In the Gavin’s Gadgets Lab

  • Samsung Gear Fit 2
  • Samsung Gear IconX – totally wireless in ear headphones, with built in fitness tracker (heart rate, distance, calories, time duration, no wires between the in ears)
  • B & O H5 in ear wireless headphones
  • Pioneer SE MHR5 headphones
  • Sony Xperia X Performance
  • Choetech Type C Adapter

Reviewed

 

Discussion: HOW “LIKE NEW” IS A SECOND HAND PHONE?

Discussion: The Nexus rumours and facts

Main Show URL: www.techaddicts.uk

Join the Discussion: https://goo.gl/spaces/6FF6jraF9KHiPUyA6

Email: contact@techaddicts.uk

Twitter: @garethmyles ; @gavinfabiani ; @samjpullen ; @GadgetyNewsCom ; @JayGarrett

Web: http://gavinsgadgets.com ; http://GadgetyNews.com
Google Plus: +garethmyles ; +gavinfabiani-laymond  ; +samjpullen ; +JayGarrett

 

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By August 10, 2016 Read More →

Benq EW2775 Monitor Unboxing

vlcsnap-00024The BenQ EW2750ZLhas dual-stage bezels with a very thin panel border including a brushed effect.There is a mysterious button with metallic-looking blue logo towards the bottom right.

One of the more interesting approaches here is the panel uses 27” AU Optronics AMVA (Advanced Multi-Domain Vertical Alignment) technology, sporting a 1920 x 1080 (Full HD) resolution and 60Hz refresh rate. This allows true 8-bit colour without dithering. The BenQ has a 178° horizontal and vertical viewing angle alongside a 3000:1 static contrast ratio.

This the monitor can cut out potentially harmful blue light without upsetting the overall colour temperature or balance of the image.

The mysterious button activates or deactivates the ‘Brightness Intelligence Technology’ (B.I. Tech.) combining ambient light sensing capabilities with a smart dynamic contrast algorithm. Allowing the monitor to adjust its own brightness according to the content being displayed on the screen whilst also taking into account ambient lighting conditions.

By August 9, 2016 Read More →

Sennheiser HD 650 and Groove unboxing

vlcsnap-00022Sennheiser and Apogee have joined forces. For those looking for the purest audio quality the combination of these brands should excite. What Sennheiser and Apogee have come up is an attractive bundle that’s nothing less than the best of both worlds.

The HD 650 studio headphones feature an open construction for a broad, authentic stereo sound that really brings your range and feeling to your music. Added is the Apogee Groove to the bundle a USB DAC (digital-to-analogue-converter) with AD/DA converters – no fewer than 4 per channel – ensure audio conversion that’s accurate to the bit.

 

By August 8, 2016 Read More →

How “like new” is a second hand phone?

vlcsnap-00020We have been sent the phone by O2, to test if second-hand phones bought from online classifieds / auction sites on the internet are ‘like new’. We know nothing of the site this was purchased from, the price, description or history of the phone, only that it was described as “like new” in the listing.

What O2 are outlining here is a real problem with second-hand phones and the sites they are sold through. The buyer isn’t protected  by much more than an easily manipulated blanket policy. Take a look at the video below and feel the pain that many are having to deal with on a daily basis when they think they are getting a good deal just to save a few £’s.

 

Find more about O2 like new handsets at www.o2.co.uk/shop/like-new.

By August 5, 2016 Read More →

Alba 10inch 16GB Wi-Fi tablet review

606-4998015-ATN041XWith summer in full swing we have been graced with only a few long hot sun filled days, so entertaining your kids on their school holidays can be quite a challenge. With the new Argos catalogue being released on the 16th July expect a wide new range of technology and toys to make their summer a memorable one.

Argos has sent us a 10-inch tablet from the Alba range which you can see the unboxing video below with Gareth.

Out of the box, this tablet has an impressive 10.1inch screen, with a resolution of 1280×800. Unfortunately, there is a disappointing 144 pixel per inch pixel density.  The screen is not as sharp or as clear as you would like but one has to remember that this is a mid-range budget tablet costing only £89.99. There are a few options within the tablet with Miravision to help sharpen the image on screen.

While trying out various combinations within these settings the screen still lacks in comparison to more expensive tablets but it still serves its purpose.

Out of the box, the tablet comes with two silicone bumpers for extra protection and also has the added bonus of a screen protector. Taking off the silicone casing the shell of the tablet is hard plastic but feels sturdy.

Powering the tablet we have the MTK quad core 1.3 Ghz processor with 1GB RAM. The tablet runs Android 5.1 Lollipop with 16 GB storage expandable up to 32 GB by MicroSD.

With the tablet held landscape you two speaker grills on the left-hand side. On the right-hand side you have the power button, the volume rocker, microuUSB port, microSDd slot and finally the Mini -HDMI slot.

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On the top and bottom of the tablet there is nothing. On the front screen of the tablet in the top right hand corner there is a VGA camera. On the rear of the tablet there is a Camera and a reset button.

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With a quick test using AnTuTu Benchmark this Alba tablet scored a reasonable 31344.  Although when running the AnTuTu 3D Benchmark app the tablet was a bit sluggish on performance, that being said the tablet was able to cope with any of the games my kids wanted to play on them, as well as being able to cope with playback of various streaming applications.

5.0 Android lollipop works fine on the tablet, with no heavy overlay, the layout on the tablet is the usual, simple stock Android experience. For newcomers to Android it will not be long until you get to grips with the layout and begin to utilise the tablet. There is the usual app drawer where you can access all your installed applications as well as full customization with widgets and wallpaper but simply holding down on the screen.

Argos boasts a pre-installed application called Teenlimit which gives parents ‘peace of mind’ by limiting what apps their children have access to and also setting time limits on the device. Fortunately this was not preinstalled, on checking reviews of this Teenlimit app on the Google Play store the app scored 2.7 stars with the majority of users complaining the app was power draining and difficult to use. I like to have full control on any device my kids use by setting up a profile  for them with their games and YouTube kids installed. You can never be too cautious when it comes to your children and internet safety.

The tablets loudspeakers are disappointing, at full volume you would need to be be within close proximity to the tablet to hear it.  Perhaps this is a good thing for kids as it will never be too loud. That being said my son was quick to pair his bluetooth headphones with the tablet so he would not be interrupted by his siblings during his gaming time.

The tablet runs most games without a hitch, Clash Royale, Minecraft, Crossy road, Roblox and the very popular Pokemon Go. With the latter app the tablet will need wifi connection if you are going on a pokemon hunt, also you will probably need the addition of a portable charger to keep the tablet going. Gameplay for the games my kids have played on the tablet has been smooth, their only gripe was the tablet was heavy weighing in at 568g it often had to be perched somewhere if they were watching video playback.

The battery life on the tablet lasts just over 5 hours of heavy usage. This can be lengthened by dimming the screen.  The battery however takes well over 7 hours to become fully charged so overnight charging is recommended!!

The cameras on the Alba 10 inch are of low spec, the rear camera is 2 megapixel and the front camera a VGA resolution. The picture quality and video quality is mediocre. Below are some examples of images and videos taken with the tablet.

Although the tablet comes with a 2 year manufacture warranty Argos have introduced a new monthly insurance scheme where you can insure the tablet for as little as £3.49 a month with added benefits like unlimited repair requests, approved repairs include damage caused by accident and a brand new product if Argos decided to replace it.  This for me was essential as you never know when accidents can occur.  Many of the tablets and phones I have owned in the past have often suffered a misdemeanour at the hands of one of my kids or myself so to have monthly breakdown care it can give you peace of mind.

It is hard to believe that this tablet costs only £89.99, and although it is from last years range. The Alba is still sufficient for any child or adult on a budget.  Is the tablet future proof? Will the tablet get a marshmallow update? These questions remain unanswered however I still use a tablet that runs Android 4.0 with no problems.  As newer games roll out some may not work however Netflix and Chrome still work well. So if you are on the lookout for a large screen, budget tablet, despite some flaws, this Alba tablet is a good purchase.

Posted in: Reviews, Tablets
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By August 3, 2016 Read More →

The Samsung Galaxy Note 7 in a nutshell

2016-08-03 (1)Samsung has officially announced the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 and the likes of @evleaks have managed to hit the nail on the head of every detail. So here is a survival guide of what it’s all about.

First up, there is no Galaxy Note 6. Samsung decided to skip a number to keep the Note inline with the Galaxy S series. Simply put, the Galaxy S series is 7 years old and the Note is 6. Samsung wanted the Note to have the same digit as their flagship so they skipped a number. Now we have the Samsung Galaxy S7, S7 Edge, and Galaxy Note 7, tidy.

The Samsung Galaxy Note 7 is notable for it’s a subtle dual edge curve display, return of a microSD card slot, USB-C port, and IP68 water resistance and an iris scanner. There is also everyone’s favourite 3.5mm headphone jack.

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  • Display: 5.7-inch 2560×1440 SuperAMOLED Edge display
  • Chipset: Octa-core 2.3GHz processor in the international model (likely the same Samsung Exynos 8890 used in the global GS7)
  • RAM: 4GB of RAM
  • Storage: 64GB of storage as standard, microSD up to 256GB
  • Battery: 3,500mAh battery with wireless fast charging
  • Other features: USB Type-C, Iris scanner, IP68 water-resistance, fingerprint sensor, 3.5mm headphone jack
  • Camera: Dual-Pixel” 12MP camera with OIS, f/1.7 aperture; 5MP front-facing camera
  • Software: Android 6.0 Marshmallow OS
  • Dimensions: 153.5mm x 73.9mm x 7.9 mm
  • Weight: 168g

The features? Well first up, TouchWiz is now running on Marshmallow with Nougat promised in the future. As you would expect Samsung inject a few new concepts of their own. Samsung Cloud, for example, a new cloud storage service that’ll let you back up information and content. It’s a little like Google Backup when you log into a new Android device, however, it adds photos and files. Meaning if you lose your phone and purchase another Samsung phone you can restore up to 15GB of data. Certainly, there are Pros and Cons to this arrangement, however, it’s there, free and a potential life saver.

Samsung Pass uses the biometric authentication methods housed within the phone, the fingerprint scanner and iris scanner, to secure apps. Crucially, this feature is at the mercy of the app developers and may never take off.

Samsung has reintroduced the water and dust resistance with the Note 7. The company has achieved an IP68 rating, meaning it can be submerged in water for up to 30 minutes. Water resistance has also been extended to the S-Pen for note taking in the rain. The tip of the S-Pen shrinks from 1.6mm to 0.7mm to allow precise writing. Pressure sensitivity has also been increased meaning it should feel more like writing with an actual pen.

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As with the Note 5 and the Galaxy S7, a new Gear VR headset has been launched to go along with the Galaxy Note 7. This time, there is an all-black color scheme and an updated visor. There aren’t any radical changes and of the hardware, a USB-C connector seems to be the biggest difference, as essential to communicate with the Note 7.

Pre-ordering starts today. Unsurprisingly, the Samsung Galaxy Note 7’s costs the Earth at £749, however, you might find it for a better price on a particular network. Launch is on the 19th of August in Blue Coral, Gold Platinum, Silver Titanium and Black Onyx. There is only one storage flavour, 64GB, however, the MicroSD card slot will see up to 256gb of expansion.

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By August 2, 2016 Read More →

Logitech G610 Onion Red Keyboard Unboxing

vlcsnap-00016Logitech have launched the G610 Orion Red mechanical gaming keyboard and we are having a quick look at it before a full review is published.

The G610 seems to have take an abrupt turn from the previous G510 in terms of features. What seems to be the idea it to create a hardcore gaming keyboard with little focus on anything else. This will make it unappealing to some, however those that crave luxuries and features should look elsewhere on the market, those looking to game, this is exactly what you should be looking at.

Time-honoured Mechanical
low-noise switches
rapid-fire actuation
50 million keystrokes
light up keys
synchronise light patterns
dedicated media controls
custom button macros (F1-F12)
26-key rollover
Three step angle adjustments
2-Year Limited Hardware Warranty