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Ear Training One Note Complete
Ear Training One Note Complete
by Bruce E. Arnold
Edition: Paperback
Price: 7.60

1.0 out of 5 stars Pointless, 10 Jan 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Edit:

I did have this book, but returned it (see below).

I noticed that this book (or the spiral version - with the CDs) has three 5 star reviews. I thought I would see what else these people had reviewed.

Billy Park has only written reviews for 5 products. All 5 are Bruce Arnold products, and all 5 got 5 star reviews.

Tom Bradford has only written 2 reviews, and both got 5 stars and - yes - both are Bruce Arnold products.

Danny Goldshtein has not reviewed anything else other than this - and his review of this is mainly just to quote the FAQ.

Maybe they are all legitimate reviews from real users, who love these products enough to write 5 star reviews of them, and just don't like anything else enough to bother writing a review, and whether these reviews are legitimate or not, this may be a great method (it is hard to tell without the CDs) but...

Well, I think I will return this book for a refund and buy something else.

The book itself is useless on its own. It directs you to buy the CDs from the author's website. Most of the book (from page 17 on, is just FAQs). The author appears to have put the book on amazon primarily as a way to direct people to his own website. The book seems more like an advert for his method, rather than a product in itself.

Original review:

The description for this book does mention that it does not include the CDs.

However, I went to the author's website [...] to download the CD tracks, but the CD download comes with the book anyway. (At least I couldn't see anywhere to download or buy the CDs without the book - which essentially makes buying this book from amazon pointless. (Unless you would rather have a physical copy of the book - but even then it is only about 50 pages, so might be easier to just print it.)

Obviously, if I had known this I would not have bought the book from Amazon, but rather would have downloaded everything from the website - or got a different book.

(Note: I emailed the author's website, and they directed me to the part of the site where I can get the downloads of the tracks, without the book, but now I am put off by the suspicious 5 start reviews on amazon.)


Just One Flash
Just One Flash
Price: 21.24

2.0 out of 5 stars Dogmatic, and not good, 1 Sep 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Just One Flash (Kindle Edition)
I really didn't like this book. It may have a couple of useful tips. On the whole, though, I don't think it is very good.

First, I just don't think it has many good pictures. Flicking through the book, I didn't see pictures and think, I want to know how to take photos like that. In fact, most of the pictures were pretty unflattering.

Flick through this and then flick through On-Camera Flash Techniques for Wedding and Portrait Photography and see which photographer you would rather emulate. For me at least, I much prefer the latter.

In addition, I found the style of the book very annoying - it is dogmatic. It basically says, you must use your flash in manual mode, if you want to be artistic. I wouldn't mind this dogmatism if the book convinced me that it was right. But there are not many - if any - photos in this book that I would consider artistic. A lot of them are actually horrible. And, in contrast, On-Camera Flash Techniques for Wedding and Portrait Photography has some really nice photos in it, and almost all of them are taken with the flash in ttl mode (but with the camera in manual mode).

Similarly, in The Hot Shoe Diaries: Big Light from Small Flashes: Creative Applications of Small Flashes (Voices That Matter) - another book with much better photos than this book - Joe Mcnally writes "if you only use these cameras in manual mode... then you are taking a souped-up Ferrari and driving it like the little old lady going to church on Sunday. Why do that? Use the technology!" And, regarding the ttl flash: "When do I use it? Nearly all the time..."


Pentax Q Compact System Camera with 8.5mm Lens Kit - Black
Pentax Q Compact System Camera with 8.5mm Lens Kit - Black

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Underrated and misunderstood, 17 Jun 2013
Short review:

Are you used to using a DSLR? When you have left your DSLR at home and taken a compact camera instead, what did you find most frustrating about using the compact camera?

A) Image quality and high ISO performance that doesn't compare to your DSLR
Or
B) The functionality of the camera. The lack of a hot shoe. The lack of raw. The lack of lens choice. The lack of external buttons and controls so that you have to keep accessing the menu to make changes to your settings.

If you answered B, this camera is for you. Despite its tiny size, the feels very much like A DSLR, in terms of its functionality etc. It is just a joy to use.

Long review:

It is fair to say the Q got mixed reviews. Lots of people didn't know what to make of the Q, or how to categorise it. Others recognised that it was not like any other camera you can buy. Some tried to make comparisons, and claimed that it didn't compare favourably, and criticised it. Others recognised that it was unique, and loved it.

Most reviews compared it to CSC cameras, and complained that image quality - and particularly high ISO performance - was not quite as good as the competition. But those cameras are much bigger than the Q. And even when Sony manage to get their cameras unbelievably small (given the size of the sensors) the lenses remain relatively large. The small size of the Q's sensor allows them to use tiny lenses.

So other reviews compared the camera to high end compacts, which have similar size sensors, and many reviewers concluded that image was quality similar. But of course these cameras don't have interchangeable lenses, and don't go anywhere near as wide as the Q's fish eye lens - not to mention the other benefits of the Q.

Not many cameras this size have a hot shoe for a flash unit. My favourite book on flash photography is this one:
On-Camera Flash Techniques for Wedding and Portrait Photography

With a small flash like this one Metz 24-AF1 Digital Flashgun for Pentax and a hot shoe flash lead you can do (almost) everything discussed in this book with this tiny camera. (And because you will be using flash, the fact that the high ISO performance can't compare with DSLRs won't be a major consideration.)

Also, many of the smaller CSC cameras sacrifice external controls to help keep the camera small, so settings have to be changed through the menu. Given its size, the Q has a surprising number of external buttons for easy access.
The Q, however, really becomes a unique camera when you combine it with K mount adapter, to use Pentax K mount lenses (though it also becomes a manual focus only camera).

Macro
One review tested the Q for macro shots, and commented that the Q didn't have a dedicated macro lens. But, combined with a K mount adapter, the Q becomes a great camera for macro, capable of taking amazing photos of insects etc.
See the picture of the spider on this forum
http://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-q/194467-pentax-q-real-world-user-review.html

Telephoto

Similarly, when combined with a K mount adapter, a 50mm lens takes you as close to your subject as a 200mm lens would on an entry level DSLR. On what other camera can you get a 200mm 1.4 lens?

See the picture of the moon on this forum: http://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-q/194467-pentax-q-real-world-user-review.html

Depth of field

The small sensor also gives you more depth of field in your photo (more of the shot is in focus). Admittedly, this is a disadvantage as often as it is an advantage. In some cases (with macro and extreme telephoto for example) this may be seen as a real advantage.

So, in short, if you want this to do what a compact camera does, you will probably be better off getting a compact camera.
If you compare this to a DSLR, the DSLR will win (unless you compare it in terms of size, or if you compare in terms of cheap and light weight telephoto and macro capabilities).

If you compare it to other CSC cameras, it will be simply be a question of what you value most: the best image quality and high ISO capability or being as tiny as possible, while still giving you interchangeable lenses and a hot shoe for a flash.
But the Q qualities of the Q are missed if you compare it to other cameras, asking if it can compete with a DSLR for shallow depth of field, or if its image quality competes other CSC cameras at high ISO.

The real strengths of the Q are in areas where other cameras simply cannot compete with it. A tiny camera that is not limited to point and shoot, can shoot in RAW, has a hot shoe, has a fish eye lens, functions much like an entry level DSLR (with similar controls and external buttons), has tiny lenses that you can carry in a pocket, and which becomes an entirely different camera when fitted with a K mount adapter.

If reviewers simply have a set of standard tests they go through, the Q often doesn't compare well with other cameras. Typically, the reviewers who were the most enthusiastic about the Q were those reviewers who didn't simply do a set of tests, reporting the results, but who actually used the camera.

Also, the price has dropped significantly. You can often find it new, with the 8.5 prime lens, for under 200.


Garmin Bike/Cart Mount for Colorado, Oregon, eTrex and Rino Series from BDM
Garmin Bike/Cart Mount for Colorado, Oregon, eTrex and Rino Series from BDM
Offered by Best Digital Market
Price: 4.99

1.0 out of 5 stars Get the actual Garmin one, 2 May 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Update:

Yesterday, I was riding my bike on the road, and hit a pot hole (not a huge one), and the e-trex fell out of the mount and onto the road. Luckily Garmin make the e-trex pretty robust, so it was okay, but I don't really trust the mount much after this.

Earlier comments:

I originally gave this two stars, writing:

I have a garmin etrex 10. I bought this to attach it to a bike, but I am not convinced it is secure. I haven't tried it on the bike yet, because I am debating whether or not to return it, but I can quite easily slide the etrex out without having to hold down the relase mechanism at the bottom. So I am not confident it would stay on the bike, if going over bumpy ground etc.

I then added a comment: actually, it is worse that I thought. Just holding the bottom of the mount, pushing it forward and stopping suddenly, the etrex just falls off without even having to touch it. Just don't have much confidence in this at all.

Anyway, despite my concerns, I did attach it to the bike, and on roads it seemed okay (hence 3 stars). However, I do have some concerns though. It isn't locked in, and there is some movement, but for simple road cycling, it may be okay. (And obviously the position you put it in can help. Having it more vertical than horizontal will mean gravity will probably keep it in place.)

I don't think I would be very confident with this on my mountain bike, riding off road.

That said, having read a few of the reviews of the original Garmin Bike Mount for Colorado and Oregon, the garmin may have the opposite flaw:

"Taking the unit out of the mount takes a relatively noticeable effort, too, and the mount moves again."

That certainly isn't a problem with the BDM one.

BDM offered me a refund, saying mine must have been a faulty one, but I have two of these (I impatiently bought the second before the first arrived), and they are both the same.

Another update:

The Garmin fell off again, and this time was run over by a truck, and is not fine. So had to buy a new etrex.

I have now replaced this item with an actual Garmin one, and it is much better - more secure - and it doesn't seem to tight a fit at all. So really no reason to get this instead of an actual Garmin one.


Cateye Velo Wireless Cycle Computer - Silver
Cateye Velo Wireless Cycle Computer - Silver
Offered by Cycle Sports UK
Price: 24.23

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars cable ties and hard to remove from bike, 30 April 2013
This review is from: CATEYE Velo Wireless (Misc.)
First, I should point out that I have the velo plus wireless. However, my understanding is that the two are pretty much identical except that the velo plus has two extra featues (calories consumed and carbon offset), so my comments should still apply.

I have a Sigma Bc1009 10 Function Cycle Computer - Black on my old bike. I have been pleased with the sigma but wanted a wireless one for my new bike.

I haven't had it long, but so far it works, but I have been disappointed by two things - particularly compared to the sigma.

First, the sigma uses strong rubber bands to attach the computer and sensor to the bike, while this uses cable ties. I don't know if these could scratch the paint, but I would prefer to use the rubber bands. Also, the rubber bands just look neater than cable ties.

Second, the computer is not easy to take out of the mount. The sigma has a simple twist and lock which is very easy and quick. The cateye just slides in and out, but is very stiff (which is presumably better than not being stiff and falling out) but makes it a pain to slide off.

One other difference to point out:

On the sigma, each reading (e.g. max speed, average speed) etc. is reset individually. On the Cateye, these are all done at once. Personally, I prefer the Cateye in this respect, as I typically do want to reset all at once. The sigma gives you more control, but the cateye is simpler.

Obviously, the odometer is the exception, and this isn't reset.


No Title Available

3.0 out of 5 stars zip ties and not easily removed from bike, 30 April 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I have a Sigma Bc1009 10 Function Cycle Computer - Black on my old bike. I have been pleased with the sigma but wanted a wireless one for my new bike.

I haven't had it long, but so far it works, but I have been disappointed by two things - particularly compared to the sigma.

First, the sigma uses strong rubber bands to attach the computer and sensor to the bike, while this uses cable ties. I don't know if these could scratch the paint, but I would prefer to use the rubber bands. Also, the rubber bands just look neater than cable ties.

Second, the computer is not easy to take out of the mount. The sigma has a simple twist and lock which is very easy and quick. The cateye just slides in and out, but is very stiff (which is presumably better than not being stiff and falling out) but makes it a pain to slide off.

One other difference to point out:

On the sigma, each reading (e.g. max speed, average speed) etc. is reset individually. On the Cateye, these are all done at once. Personally, I prefer the Cateye in this respect, as I typically do want to reset all at once. The sigma gives you more control, but the cateye is simpler.

Obviously, the odometer is the exception, and this isn't reset. (Note, however, that the carbon emissions reading is reset with everything else.)


2014 Cycling Wrap Running Outdoor Sports Sunglasses Multi Sport Glasses Exchangeable 5 Lenses Unbreakable Polarized UV400
2014 Cycling Wrap Running Outdoor Sports Sunglasses Multi Sport Glasses Exchangeable 5 Lenses Unbreakable Polarized UV400
Offered by Kldeals
Price: 21.00

4.0 out of 5 stars A bit large, but otherwise good value, 30 April 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I don't think I have an especially small head, but I did find these glasses to be quite large - particularly wide. If I had tried them on before buying, I probably wouldn't have bought them.

Of course, they will fit some people better than others.

On the other hand, when worn with a helmet, they loo a bit in proportion. And, size aside, they seem good value for money, and do what I wanted. (Note, however, that only one of the lenses - the darkest - is polarised.)


Cree Q5 MTB mountain bike lights cycle helmet torch light + 18650 charging kit
Cree Q5 MTB mountain bike lights cycle helmet torch light + 18650 charging kit
Offered by mighty lights limited
Price: 17.00

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Bright but..., 11 April 2013
This is certainly a good torch. Very bright.

As a helmet light though, it is pretty heavy. And the attachment isn't really adjustable, so difficult to get it to point in the direction you want. In face, the extent to which it faces up or down will depend quite a lot on your helmet.

On mine, placing it where it fits most naturally it points upwards, so not ideal. Putting it nearer the front so it pointed down, the weight really pulled the helmet forward.

I don't think I would use it on the road. Unless it can be pointed down it may be too bright. May be useful off road though.

I like the Moon GEM 2.0 Front Light -Black as a helmet light - but that isn't nearly as bright as this, and probably not bright enough if you are looking at this as an option.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: May 2, 2013 2:49 PM BST


Topeak Headlux Helmet Light -
Topeak Headlux Helmet Light -
Offered by GsportsUK
Price: 15.29

1 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Other options, 10 April 2013
I don't own this light, but am just writing a review to suggest an alternative. (I gave it 4 stars just because that was the average score it already had.)

I saw this in a shop, and it is very very small. However, even as small as it is, it seems a little bit like it would be having a police light on the top of your hear.

It is a bit more expensive, but I prefer the combination of Moon GEM 2.0 Front Light -Black and Gem 1.0 Rear Light. (Or alternatively Moon Gem 1.0 Front & Rear USB Charging Mountain Bike Headlight & Taillight LED Light Set in White/Silver).


Moon GEM 2.0 Front Light - Black
Moon GEM 2.0 Front Light - Black
Price: 10.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good helmet light, 10 April 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Moon GEM 2.0 Front Light (Sports)
Lots of other people have said good things about this light. So I will just add something that I don't think anyone else has mentioned - that this is a great helmet light.

The light turns on the strap, so can be pointed in any direction. So, with the elastic strap, it can be attached to all sorts of things, so works extremely well as a helmet light.

I've not used the Topeak Headlux Helmet Light - - but I have always been a bit put off by the fact that it looks like you have some sort of police light on the top of your head. This isn't really any smaller, but having it more on the side of the helmet, and not sticking out so much, just seems less silly than having the lights stuck on top.

I have this on the side/front and Gem 1.0 Rear Light on the other side, facing back.


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