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Reviews Written by
Robert Howcroft "robhowcroft" (UK)
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5m Platinum Ultra HD High Speed (HQ) HDMI cable with Ethernet (Network) & Real 3D / metal connectors / x.v.Color und Deep Color / ARC - CEC / Triple shielded | Standard 1.4a / 2.0 | 1080p / 2160p | 4k | 5 meters
5m Platinum Ultra HD High Speed (HQ) HDMI cable with Ethernet (Network) & Real 3D / metal connectors / x.v.Color und Deep Color / ARC - CEC / Triple shielded | Standard 1.4a / 2.0 | 1080p / 2160p | 4k | 5 meters
Offered by CSL-Computer

4.0 out of 5 stars Good quality, low price long HDMI cable..., 6 Mar 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
How I quantify my scoring system, based on functionality, price and longevity:

Five stars: completely exceeded my expectations and would highly recommended
Four stars: better than expected and would recommended
Three stars: met my expectations with no hidden surprises or shocks
Two stars: below my expectations and probably wouldn't recommend
One star: completely below my expectations and certainly wouldn't recommend

Not really too much to write about this: it's a long HDMI cable, feels very well made and it works exactly as expected. Also, quick delivery and low price from the seller - CSL Computer - certainly much cheaper than you'd have once paid in Comet where they'd have been asking fifty quid or more for such a cable.

It can't be five stars - it's not a life changer! - but still a good four star product.


Nikon S6200 Coolpix Camera - Blue (16MP, 25mm Lens, 10x Zoom, 720p HD) 2.7 inch LCD Screen
Nikon S6200 Coolpix Camera - Blue (16MP, 25mm Lens, 10x Zoom, 720p HD) 2.7 inch LCD Screen

2.0 out of 5 stars Okay outdoors but awful inside..., 17 Feb 2014
How I quantify my scoring system, based on functionality, price and longevity:

Five stars: completely exceeded my expectations and would highly recommended
Four stars: better than expected and would recommended
Three stars: met my expectations with no hidden surprises or shocks
Two stars: below my expectations and probably wouldn't recommend
One star: completely below my expectations and certainly wouldn't recommend

I've now owned mine for sixteen months and while it's probably no longer available, I feel I need to steer others away from this camera in case there are some still knocking around. I bought this to replace an ageing Fuji compact, but this is so poor at indoor shots that the Fuji is still being preferred. I used the Nikon for my son's wedding a few days ago but sadly none of the photos are usable even for Facebook. Thank God there were other people with cameras and they'd also hired a professional for quality shots. Set to auto, all of the shots were either flashed out or my finger was partially covering the flash resulting in a badly lit photo. This has everything to do with the location of the flash... IT'S IN THE WRONG PLACE! I CANNOT EMPHASIZE THIS ENOUGH! Rather than being in the centre of the camera body where any sensible flash should be, on the Nikon it's bang on the outer edge... exactly where you hold your left hand to support the camera. How this ever got past testing is anyone's guess as it must have been obvious at the design stage. You have to remember to hold it carefully but that's much easier said than done when you're taking quick snaps. As for outdoor use, it takes average shots, nothing to write home about but they're okay.

When it comes to camera speed, focusing seems to take forever at times while the lens supposedly seeks the perfect shot. All too often, the subject matter will have either gone or lost patience by the time it eventually decides to shoot the picture. Spontaneous real smiles will too frequently be replaced with forced ones. And as for write speeds, even with a high speed class 10 memory card, it still takes 3 or so seconds to write to the card each time. Not good. The image review function is also the worst I've ever seen. On other cameras, you can set it so that the image stays on the screen for two seconds then disappears. On the Nikon, you either have it on or off which is disconcerting as you don't know if you actually took a shot or not. I haven't yet found a setting where you can briefly view it before deciding whether you want to take another just in case. Thus you have to keep constantly reviewing the pictures which in turn reduces the very average battery life.

Build wise, the camera is very compact, quality appears good and it looks cool with the lens zoomed fully out. That's as much as I can really say on that.

Overall, there's nothing exceptional - or even particularly good save for the 10x optical zoom - about this camera but a great deal that's mediocre. Having owned three Fuji digitals before this, I would not buy another Nikon however my budget at time of buying was limited (an insurance replacement from the now defunct Comet). The Nikon's long zoom was cheap at the price I paid - 110 - but I now wish I'd been able to pay more and get a Fuji with the same spec. Pound for pound, I think this is the worst camera I've ever owned over the years.

Price: 3/5
Specification: 4/5
Build quality: 4/5
Indoor photo quality: 2/5
Outdoor photo quality: 3.5/5
Functionality: 2/5

To sum up, it's not a one star camera as it's relatively cheap for the spec but I'm sure you can get much better for the same price elsewhere.


Nikon COOLPIX S6200 Compact Digital Camera - Black (16MP, 10x Optical Zoom) 2.7 inch LCD
Nikon COOLPIX S6200 Compact Digital Camera - Black (16MP, 10x Optical Zoom) 2.7 inch LCD

2.0 out of 5 stars Okay outdoors but awful inside..., 17 Feb 2014
How I quantify my scoring system, based on functionality, price and longevity:

Five stars: completely exceeded my expectations and would highly recommended
Four stars: better than expected and would recommended
Three stars: met my expectations with no hidden surprises or shocks
Two stars: below my expectations and probably wouldn't recommend
One star: completely below my expectations and certainly wouldn't recommend

I've now owned mine for sixteen months and while it's probably no longer available, I feel I need to steer others away from this camera in case there are some still knocking around. I bought this to replace an ageing Fuji compact, but this is so poor at indoor shots that the Fuji is still being preferred. I used the Nikon for my son's wedding a few days ago but sadly none of the photos are usable even for Facebook. Thank God there were other people with cameras and they'd also hired a professional for quality shots. Set to auto, all of the shots were either flashed out or my finger was partially covering the flash resulting in a badly lit photo. This has everything to do with the location of the flash... IT'S IN THE WRONG PLACE! I CANNOT EMPHASIZE THIS ENOUGH! Rather than being in the centre of the camera body where any sensible flash should be, on the Nikon it's bang on the outer edge... exactly where you hold your left hand to support the camera. How this ever got past testing is anyone's guess as it must have been obvious at the design stage. You have to remember to hold it carefully but that's much easier said than done when you're taking quick snaps. As for outdoor use, it takes average shots, nothing to write home about but they're okay.

When it comes to camera speed, focusing seems to take forever at times while the lens supposedly seeks the perfect shot. All too often, the subject matter will have either gone or lost patience by the time it eventually decides to shoot the picture. Spontaneous real smiles will too frequently be replaced with forced ones. And as for write speeds, even with a high speed class 10 memory card, it still takes 3 or so seconds to write to the card each time. Not good. The image review function is also the worst I've ever seen. On other cameras, you can set it so that the image stays on the screen for two seconds then disappears. On the Nikon, you either have it on or off which is disconcerting as you don't know if you actually took a shot or not. I haven't yet found a setting where you can briefly view it before deciding whether you want to take another just in case. Thus you have to keep constantly reviewing the pictures which in turn reduces the very average battery life.

Build wise, the camera is very compact, quality appears good and it looks cool with the lens zoomed fully out. That's as much as I can really say on that.

Overall, there's nothing exceptional - or even particularly good save for the 10x optical zoom - about this camera but a great deal that's mediocre. Having owned three Fuji digitals before this, I would not buy another Nikon however my budget at time of buying was limited (an insurance replacement from the now defunct Comet). The Nikon's long zoom was cheap at the price I paid - 110 - but I now wish I'd been able to pay more and get a Fuji with the same spec. Pound for pound, I think this is the worst camera I've ever owned over the years.

Price: 3/5
Specification: 4/5
Build quality: 4/5
Indoor photo quality: 2/5
Outdoor photo quality: 3.5/5
Functionality: 2/5

To sum up, it's not a one star camera as it's relatively cheap for the spec but I'm sure you can get much better for the same price elsewhere.


Magnetic Magnet Leather Cover Sleeve Case For eReader eBook KOBO Touch - Colour Black
Magnetic Magnet Leather Cover Sleeve Case For eReader eBook KOBO Touch - Colour Black
Offered by itech-coodio
Price: 9.99

2.0 out of 5 stars Expensive for what you get..., 4 Feb 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
How I quantify my scoring system, based on functionality, price and longevity:

Five stars: completely exceeded my expectations and would highly recommended
Four stars: better than expected and would recommended
Three stars: met my expectations with no hidden surprises or shocks
Two stars: below my expectations and probably wouldn't recommend
One star: completely below my expectations and certainly wouldn't recommend

Like many others, I've recently purchased a Kobo Touch and wanted a case to protect it so went for this. It wasn't the cheapest around - okay a tenner's hardly going to break the bank - but you can also get other cases for half this price. I thought the extra money would result in extra quality.

However, I have to say that I was not impressed by my cover. As others have said, it's not real leather which is not as advertised. I simply won't accept that we have to settle for this because it's a fairly cheap product... it's a controversial statement whatever the purchase price.

The internal plastic holder, while clearly bespoke for a Kobo, was distorted on mine and looked horrible with the Kobo in place. Although I very rarely return products, as a result of the fake leather, distorted fitting and high-ish cost price, I sent mine back the same day I received it.

Under my scoring system, I cannot give this even three stars. The same day I returned this I bought a genuine (generic) leather case from Tesco and as such, can only award this product two stars.


Cat Mens Shelter S3 Boots P706272 Black 8 UK, 42 EU
Cat Mens Shelter S3 Boots P706272 Black 8 UK, 42 EU
Price: 66.45

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Ignore the one star reviews... this is a work boot after all!, 16 Dec 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Cat Mens Shelter S3 Boots (Shoes)
Time to balance the unfairly negative reviews here.

Probably like the other reviewers, I also bought these on the recent Black Friday deals: however, seemingly unlike them, I actually studied the various pictures BEFORE I made my purchase. Someone has also stated the product description is misleading... it's not. It clearly states these are 'protective boots'... and those who "know" their boots will know what this means. When read in context with the photographs, it should have been blindingly obvious it's referring to a steel toe cap. For Heavens sake, the moulded rubber flaps covering the fronts of the boots are a major giveaway to the steel underneath!

As for the boots themselves, they look very well made, very durable and should withstand a few months of heavy site use, a few more with lighter work. Admittedly, they're not the prettiest you can buy - but they are industrial work boots after all, not trendy ones.

Overall, ignore the one star reviews. They were clearly after a trendy style Cat boot that's designed to be worn casually in the street. Had they actually looked at what they were buying and taken a pause before rushing in, they'd have realised exactly what they were getting. Blaming the product or Amazon when the "mistake" is actually down to their own lack of due consideration, research or hasty Black Friday purchase is more fool them.

In my opinion, the boot does what it says it does and deserve four stars.


HTC Media Link HD Wireless HDMI Adapter with UK Mains Plug - Black
HTC Media Link HD Wireless HDMI Adapter with UK Mains Plug - Black
Offered by Houseoffloors
Price: 49.90

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good for streaming audio but meh for video..., 15 Dec 2013
How I quantify my scoring system, based on functionality, price and longevity:

Five stars: completely exceeded my expectations and would highly recommended
Four stars: better than expected and would recommended
Three stars: met my expectations with no hidden surprises or shocks
Two stars: below my expectations and probably wouldn't recommend
One star: completely below my expectations and certainly wouldn't recommend

Okay, so it's been out a while but I decided to invest in one of these for my HTC One X+. I use the HTC MHL box for my HTC Flyer but that won't work with the One X+ so I bought this instead. A major problem with the MHL is that while the picture from Netflix streams okay, it's in a squashed format and no amount of resizing on the TV will fix it. Unfortunately, the complete opposite is true of the wireless Media Link... quite frankly the picture is atrocious. It doesn't matter for much that the aspect ratio is okay, it's just un-watchable. It streams HTC's own Watch channel better but then that's on a Pay as you Watch basis and I'm simply not interested in that. Some might shout conspiracy here, that HTC's own app is good while third party apps are terrible. So zero stars for streaming media. Funnily enough, it's also similar for content on the phone. Use MX Player - my app of choice for video - and the picture is terrible but use the built in Android app and the same film is much clearer.

However, as an audio streamer it's fine for playing music from my phone through my very powerful hi-fi. Okay, so maybe the sound wouldn't please an audiophile but it's more than okay for my purposes.

I'm not interested in using it to show off my photos on my TV but it worked fine when I tried it.

Finally, it does get quite warm if it's been used for streaming video for a while so that could possibly become an issue.

Overall, it's pretty meh as a media streamer - my main reason for buying it - but it's just about salvaged by its high usefulness as an audio player without having to use a long lead to my hi-fi. Unlike other glowing reviews however, it's a strict three stars from me, nothing more and nothing less.


Harry's Code Mug inspired by Dexter
Harry's Code Mug inspired by Dexter
Offered by Cultzilla
Price: 5.99

3.0 out of 5 stars It's a mug... exactly as expected, 12 Dec 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
How I quantify my scoring system, based on functionality, price and longevity:

Five stars: completely exceeded my expectations and would highly recommended
Four stars: better than expected and would recommended
Three stars: met my expectations with no hidden surprises or shocks
Two stars: below my expectations and probably wouldn't recommend
One star: completely below my expectations and certainly wouldn't recommend

Well... what can you really say about a mug? It either works or it doesn't! However, it's a pretty well made mug of proper mug size - this isn't a tea cup unlike others you might see - and the blood spatter design, while admittedly not to everyone's taste, will certainly appeal to Dexter fans and is very eye catching. I bought this as a secret Santa gift for a work colleague - and fellow Dexter fan - and I know she's gonna absolutely love this!

Product wise there are no surprises or shocks and nor is it particularly cheap either so I really can't give it any more than three stars.


Energizer Pack of 2 AAAA Batteries
Energizer Pack of 2 AAAA Batteries
Offered by PoundMax
Price: 2.60

4.0 out of 5 stars They're only batteries... but cheaper than expected, 4 Dec 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Energizer Pack of 2 AAAA Batteries
How I quantify my scoring system, based on functionality, price and longevity:

Five stars: completely exceeded my expectations and would highly recommended
Four stars: better than expected and would recommended
Three stars: met my expectations with no hidden surprises or shocks
Two stars: below my expectations and probably wouldn't recommend
One star: completely below my expectations and certainly wouldn't recommend

These batteries are quite difficult to get hold of in the shops so the only reliable place to get them is online. Fortunately, Amazon stocked them at a reasonable price and they arrived quickly.

Function wise, what can you really say about a battery? It either works or it doesn't! Thus unlike the five star reviews that others have written, it's impossible for me to give five under my own scoring system. Longevity is a tough one suffice to say that the same battery came with the stylus pen for my HTC tablet in January 2012 and has only just expired, twenty three months later.

Product wise it's a strict three stars because there are no surprises - they're merely batteries after all - however I'll give them four simply because for niche batteries, the price was cheaper than expected.


Lorus Men's Watch R2325DX9
Lorus Men's Watch R2325DX9
Offered by Nigel Pearce & Son, Jewellers
Price: 22.00

4.0 out of 5 stars Cost effective but attractive sports watch..., 3 Dec 2013
This review is from: Lorus Men's Watch R2325DX9 (Watch)
How I quantify my scoring system, based on functionality, price and longevity:

Five stars: completely exceeded my expectations and would highly recommended
Four stars: better than expected and would recommended
Three stars: met my expectations with no hidden surprises or shocks
Two stars: below my expectations and probably wouldn't recommend
One star: completely below my expectations and certainly wouldn't recommend

Although mine has yellow buttons on the watch face rather than black, I can say that mine is an attractive watch and is much shinier than the photos on Amazon show. I can therefore imagine that the black buttoned version is just as nice looking.

Function wise, it has what you need for telling the day, date and time with both analog and digital times shown, dual time for another country, decent stopwatch plus a couple of other things I don't use such as alarm and TA... whatever that stands for!

It is lightweight and waterproof... I've used it for lane swimming in the pool and it's still going. I wouldn't take it down too deep but that's not what I bought it for... I wanted a cheap watch for timing myself at running, swimming and cycling. It does this perfectly.

Function wise it does what it says... however, I'm giving it an extra star because it's pleasantly nicer than the photographs show.


The Damage
The Damage
Price: 2.79

4.0 out of 5 stars One man's gangster fantasy but an enjoyable read..., 2 Dec 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: The Damage (Kindle Edition)
How I quantify my scoring system, based on functionality, price and longevity:

Five stars: completely exceeded my expectations and would highly recommended
Four stars: better than expected and would recommended
Three stars: met my expectations with no hidden surprises or shocks
Two stars: below my expectations and probably wouldn't recommend
One star: completely below my expectations and certainly wouldn't recommend

Having read both this and the previous novel, The Drop, I can say that both were enjoyable if not exhilarating reads. The stories are certainly interesting and the writing style good enough to keep you interested to the end.

At times however, the characters utter can become embarrassingly cliched with lines that wouldn't sound too out of place in the 'Lock Stock' or 'Snatch' movies. It even veers into the authors own gangster fantasy with imagining himself saying the toughest, most intimidating cliche it's possible to say in a pressure situation such as having a gun pointed at your head. As for the anti-hero, David Blake, think Michael Corleone crossed with Guy Richie smart ass catch phrases set in North East England. That's a fair description.

Good reads - and I'll eventually get round to the third - but certainly not classics.


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