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A Cactus "Andy Cactus" (NW UK)
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Amazon Fire TV
Amazon Fire TV
Price: £64.00

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Well made and executed., 21 Dec 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Amazon Fire TV (Electronics)
The FireTV is a well made and thought through design. Everything is taken care of from right from taking out of the box preconfigured and ready to go. Simple to use, simple to expand. Safe to give to the less technical relative to use.

Packaging is top notch, beautiful black exterior and bright orange interior. Wrapped in multiple strips of sticky plastic to preserve finish of surfaces. but most difficult is the film over the Infra red lens cover on the remote

Comes with 2x AAA Amazon basic batteries for the remote and 1x Mains PSU (not terminated in a micro USB connector).

No other cables included so you must have at least a HDMI cable, optionally an ethernet if using wired networking and a TOSLINK optical cable if using that method for sound output.

The hardware is currently more than fast enough for smooth speedy interface and faultless HD decoding. I have added an AirPlay App and that seems to work quite nicely as well without crashing out all the time. iPlayer is as good as i have seen it anywhere. Same for Netfix and Amazon. Given the ease and speed you can jump into the FireTV and getting to these services through the responsive user interface this will easily replace use of the lame built-in ‘smartTV’ Apps or say logging into a games console.

Going forward success for Amazon will be down to both Amazon and the App developers actively bug chasing and keeping Apps up to date. It will also depend on content suppliers striking the deals needed to be on this platform. The list of prime content is looking a bit thin.

Things continue to move fast in this hardware market so don’t be surprised how soon the next version of this box will appear.

Improvements I would like to see: The main downside is its another remote on the table so some CEC support (normal TV remote navigation commands detected over HDMI, xbmc does it so why not Fire?).


AirPlay/DLNA Receiver (PRO)
AirPlay/DLNA Receiver (PRO)
Price: £2.95

4.0 out of 5 stars Fairly solid AirPlay for Fire TV, 20 Dec 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: AirPlay/DLNA Receiver (PRO) (App)
Which media box you end up running with comes down to which will do most of the things you want. For me AirPlay was on the list of must haves and the availability of this App on Fire TV swung me from xbmc and potentially the ageing AppleTV. I had some promo credit which brought this App to a pound which i think is what it is worth. Previous experience with built in xbmc builds with fragile AirPlay it was always a cat and mouse game with it being broken most of the time when iOS updates altered the spec of AirPlay.

This App seems to perform better than xbmc. I have linked iOS8 iPhone, iPad and Macbook Air without needing box reboots. It runs all the time in the background and you can just airplay from your devices on the same local network. I can mirror as well as video/audio. However sometimes in mirror mode large pixelation artefacts seem to creep in after a while.
It remains to be seen how well this App remains operable or how fast updates are made in response to Apple making updates to iOS and MacOS. The AirPlay specs are closed as far as I know.


TWiT.TV for Fire TV
TWiT.TV for Fire TV
Price: £0.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Slick TWiT App., 19 Dec 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: TWiT.TV for Fire TV (App)
After using XBMC on raspberry pie for 2 years I moved over to the Fire TV. This TWiT App is a solid and slick way to watch TwiT the live stream on a big TV and of corse all the saved shows. There is a schedule for the days ahead and the times are correct for your local time. You can choose SD or HD quality. I find HD is perfect over a wired network on BT infinity. The only thing missing compared to the XBMC app for the true geek is the choice of Live stream providers (bitgravity, ustream etc). It does not say in the App which is used nor do you get to choose. In the past one can be in difficulty and being able to switch saved the day. Easily worth the money and just being available was a big part of the reason I switched to Fire.


Veetop® 3100mAh iPhone 6 (4.7) External Battery Case Power Backup with Two (2) Interchangeable Frames, Original Apple Lightning Connector, Charge and Sync, No Signal Reduction (Black, Clear / Blue Frame)
Veetop® 3100mAh iPhone 6 (4.7) External Battery Case Power Backup with Two (2) Interchangeable Frames, Original Apple Lightning Connector, Charge and Sync, No Signal Reduction (Black, Clear / Blue Frame)
Offered by Veetop
Price: £34.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars All-in-one extended use for iPhone6., 13 Dec 2014
Adding all-in-one power back up to your iPhone6 (not plus).

I will be honest with you this inevitably adds significant thickness and weight to your super slim iPhone6 no two ways about it. But you are not buying this case for thinness, its impact absorbing properties or its looks. You are buying this for convenience of an all-in-one pocketable solution which carries its own internal reservoir of spare energy and connection. In addition whilst it is in its top-up mode you continue to be mobile and can use the phone freely with no wires leading to a bulky battery pack.

Users should be aware what this battery case does to your feel of the phone. The bare iPhone6 weighs in at about 129.5g
The complete case (both back and frame) weighs about 102.5g but the manual states 82g which must be for the back only which is not an option as the side frame has to be used otherwise the phone just slides off the connector.

Handling this combined weight of phone and case was a bit of a shock to me at first, demonstrating to me how far we have come in being `trained' to use ever thiner and lighter mobiles. Using this case more than doubles the thickness of the phone and assembled with the phone the total came in at 232g, almost doubles the iPhone6 mass. Another harsh way of putting it this is now over 1/2 a pound. But we have doubled our potential runtime without needing mains, wires or another box. You can charge and continue on moving freely.

Consists of a back case (gold) and a hard plastic click-on frame (two colours provided, clear and black in mine: Actually the black looked the best IMHO).
Case back is curved. Camera and flash are exposed through a deep slot. Buttons are actuated by moving, through-frame buttons.
The frame extends in front of the screen (screen-down protection) and without encroaching too far on the glass edge so iPhone6 sized screen protectors can be used without the edges lifting.

I have not tried this but I should think it offers some protection from primary impact dints if you dropped it onto a hard surface but I would imagine the outer snap-on frame would ping off at this point leaving the phone free to separate off the back and then prone to secondary scuffs.

Things to consider:
Assembled phone + case may not fit some of your iPhone holders/appliances.

Certainly you have no access to the lightening connector.

Headphone socket is now only reachable via a narrow adapter (supplied) which can tunnel through the thick plastic case frame to the iPhone's 3.5mm socket and then you plug your phones into this short cable. (don't loose this adapter)

There is only a microUSB socket on the case which can be used to charge the case and phone and some access to other Lightening functionality. iTunes could see my phone for example. Audio video out though does not go through the usb.

You have to trigger the reserve charging with the case back button. The phone has no knowledge of it or control of it. It does not see a combined capacity of case + phone batteries.

Compared to a separate battery pack + cable it is more convenient if you want to keep talking whilst charging and no trailing wires.

Compared to a separate battery pack + cable it is less convenient as it only can be used on the iPhone6 not your tablet as well.

If you were to carry it separately, compared to a separate battery pack + cable it is less convenient as you would need to remove the current iPhone case and attach this one.

I do like the convenience ideas of this case. I would not use it as an all-day everyday phone case because it is just on the wrong side of too large but it definitely reserve it for days where I know I need extended lifetime. At least always have it handy for when I need to top-up and stay wire-free.

I do wish it had a duplicate external Lightening port, probably a license issue definitely not a space issue. There is also enough space in this frame to have a very thin all-day case that could stay on the phone and then click that assembly back in to the main case without needing it removed. Now there is an idea Veetop.

Apart from this wish list, this case does everything the seller says it does, it does it well, and good build quality and no niggles. So full marks from me.


Veetop® Ultra Clear Case with Luxury Electroplating Frame Back Case for iPhone 6 (4.7), Light-weight (8g/3oz), Ultra Slim (0.8mm/0.031"), Scratch Resistant Coating Finishing (EP-C02) (Gold)
Veetop® Ultra Clear Case with Luxury Electroplating Frame Back Case for iPhone 6 (4.7), Light-weight (8g/3oz), Ultra Slim (0.8mm/0.031"), Scratch Resistant Coating Finishing (EP-C02) (Gold)
Offered by Veetop
Price: £12.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Very thin case, 13 Dec 2014
If you are after an extremely thin case that weighs next to nothing then this may be what you want.
The back is crystal clear, the sides are 'metalled' in a tint somewhere between silver and gold colour. The finish is a smooth high gloss with no seams. The electroplating seems to be inside the this clear plastic as I cannot feel its edge. Its purely decorative.

When attached to the iPhone six its presence is barely noticeable because the hard plastic is so thin. The sides curve around the corners slightly but most of the ends are fully open for cables etc and holes in the sides give access to buttons, the SIM slot is covered over. The thickness is such that all phone buttons are recessed slightly and the back is just thick enough that the lens of the rear camera would not touch a table surface. There is no stand offs on the back so when put on a table the whole back of the case is in contact. The sides do not extend in front of the screen so placing screen down means your screen is in full contact with a table for example. No screen protector provided but you could add your own as this case does not go anywhere near the glass.

I am not sure what the idea is behind the electroplated frame though. If you have a gold iPhone its barely noticeable, and on a space grey the gold on silver is just noticeable.

Being so thin its not going to absorb much energy from drops on to hard surfaces but it will obviously offer surface protection from scratches to the back and long sides. The electroplating is just decorative and will offer no impact resistance. Its not a metal frame.
Takes some effort to get off the phone as its so slippery and thin, finger nails needed.

The only branding is on one edge, Veetop is there as letters in 'missing' metallisation but when on the phone is not noticeable at all.

I weigh it in at 11.5g or 0.4oz which must be the lightest case I have encountered.


Veetop® iPhone 6 4.7" Case -Simple & Elegant - Premium Soft PU Leather Flip Cover Wallet Case with Microfiber Liner Dual Side Magnet Design for Front & Back (iPhone 6 4.7", Black)
Veetop® iPhone 6 4.7" Case -Simple & Elegant - Premium Soft PU Leather Flip Cover Wallet Case with Microfiber Liner Dual Side Magnet Design for Front & Back (iPhone 6 4.7", Black)
Offered by Veetop
Price: £10.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Discrete style phone case with magnetic stay-shut flap, 11 Dec 2014
Fold over style iPhone cover giving the more traditional chequebook look to a phone. The result is it conceals the phone rather than showing it off which may appeal more to some circumstances. And obviously the screen is also concealed from view and thus protected from other objects touching it.
The finish on this case is very good. No hanging threads from stitching, neat edging, crisp feel to the cover. The front fold over cover and the back surface both contain a strong magnetic full-length strip hidden within the materials. The attraction between the two is what keeps the cover closed even when the phone is installed. The covers adds a little thickness to the phone. Its held in place by crystal clear polymer side clasps that run the length of the phone which essentially become invisible. The ends of the phone are fully exposed for ease of charging and cable access. Nice.


Microfibre Towel for Travel, Beach, Bath, Gym, Camping - XL Extra Large but Compact, Antibacterial and Quick Dry with small Carry Pouch (Lavender, 60 x 30 Inches)
Microfibre Towel for Travel, Beach, Bath, Gym, Camping - XL Extra Large but Compact, Antibacterial and Quick Dry with small Carry Pouch (Lavender, 60 x 30 Inches)
Offered by Grabbits
Price: £20.00

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Compact Towel, 11 Dec 2014
The point of this towel is its space saving aspect and having the large area of a bath towel. Its the thinness that saves the space and weight. If you need to travel and would like to take a towel with you but hesitate at the bulk of a normal bath towel then this micro fibre will simply solve that. It packs away in its own breathable travel bag and takes a small fraction of the space and a fraction of the weight of your normal bath towel.
Years of using a thick fluffy towels leads to a bit of a weird usage first experience. Its thin and therefore lightweight property means it does cling to the skin at first in an unfamiliar way meaning you have to change your handling of the towel. Putting that aside this certainly does the job of getting you dry fast so full marks. I don't think it would replace everyday bath towel usage but who knows. Other uses because of the small space it takes? you may even consider putting one in the back of the car, hiking, camping during bad weather. No details on antibacterial agent involved, I would guess it is something embedded in the fibres, maybe silver nano particles, who knows.
It is not to be put in a tumble drier but I find it drys out much more quickly than a standard towel so its not a problem. Not to be ironed either (not that I iron ordinary towels) but being so thin and flat `cloth' surface could show creases in a way a normal towel does not so bare that in mind when hanging and storing. Not my ideal colour choice, a sort of mauve. Very useful bit of laundry.


eBoot US UK EU AU Universal All In One International Travel Power Adapter Charger (max1500w) With 2.5A dual USB Charger for iPad 4, Mini, Air; iPhone 4S, 5S, 5C, 4; Samsung Galaxy Tab 2, 3; Galaxy Note 3, 2; Galaxy S5, S4, S3; HTC One etc. (Black)
eBoot US UK EU AU Universal All In One International Travel Power Adapter Charger (max1500w) With 2.5A dual USB Charger for iPad 4, Mini, Air; iPhone 4S, 5S, 5C, 4; Samsung Galaxy Tab 2, 3; Galaxy Note 3, 2; Galaxy S5, S4, S3; HTC One etc. (Black)
Offered by eBoot
Price: £23.99

5.0 out of 5 stars All in one, nothing to lose., 2 Dec 2014
This at first sight looks like a 3-way mains block extender. Its a similar size and shape. But it is in fact a way of bundling together a mains travel adapter and a 2x USB charging point in one self contained unit. There are no adapter bits to lose as they all slide in and out from within the body. Pick it up and you have everything. No looking for the `USA bit' from your last trip. Its fused with a spare also provided in another pull out in the body.

The two USB charging points are fairly standard speed nothing special, you provide your own cables. I always take another original charger which can obviously plug in to this.

Comes in a close fitting zip bag to protect it from collecting `bits' from your luggage or scratching something else.

Its a good idea, well executed but once or twice because of its size I was prevented from using some wall sockets because of close placement of immovable room objects near the desired socket. Its does make a bit of a rattle because of all the moving bits inside.

You can even use it at home as a pass-through charger (don't lose a socket) but for UK usage note the folding out earth pin is plastic so nothing plugged in will be earthed.

Based on a review sample.


Veetop® Bluetooth 4.0 A2DP Wireless Music Audio Adapter Receiver with Apt-X & NFC for iOS iPhone/iPad,/iPod Touch, Android smartphone/Tablet PC Dock Speaker and Bluetooth Enable Devices-3.5mm Aux Cable Hidden & 12Hours Working Time (BTR969N)
Veetop® Bluetooth 4.0 A2DP Wireless Music Audio Adapter Receiver with Apt-X & NFC for iOS iPhone/iPad,/iPod Touch, Android smartphone/Tablet PC Dock Speaker and Bluetooth Enable Devices-3.5mm Aux Cable Hidden & 12Hours Working Time (BTR969N)
Offered by Veetop
Price: £22.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Add Bluetooth input to a sound system, 30 Nov 2014
A tiny black fob (about the size of some usb memory drives) adds wireless stereo audio to a hi-fi or car system that has a 3.5mm aux input. Its powered by its own internal rechargeable battery (USB cable provided but bring your own charging point). Battery life is about half a day.

It has its own aux connecting cable (flat, mm long) which neatly tucks away into a side groove. Its nicely rounded corners and gloss finish give it a modern look.

Best design decision for me is the size and placement of the single button for on/off and pairing. It is just the right size, large and easy to find and to use. Others I have tried have a tiny button on an edge which has to be pressed uncomfortably hard to register clicks.

The blue/red LED is small and quite discreet and will not light up the room unnecessarily. Pairing is easy (blue/red flash) and the range is better than I get for some speakers with built-in bluetooth but it also depends on what you are using to transmit from. Tested from an iPhone 6 I got uninterrupted reception all over the house and to outside through floors and walls with only the use of a microwave oven killing the connection (if within a few metres). The sound is crystal clear, free of noise, correctly phased and correct L/R stereo. Tried a couple of speakers with good sound but poor BT range, by-passing their own bluetooth via their aux input and this made them work over much longer distance than before. Also tried in a hire car where the built-in music BT gave troublesome connections with the iPhone6 iOS8 but going through the Veetop and the car Aux in socket the result was very clean.

To help with setting up there is a spoken interface by a british female voice including:
"Power on"
"Pairing"
"Your device is connected"
"Your device is disconnect" (sic)
"Goodbye" (for both user power off and auto power-off)

Cannot fault it. Quality item.
Based on a review sample.


Veetop® Dual USB High Speed (MFI Certified) Car Charger UPGRADE 3.4Amp 15.5W - 2.4A & 1.0A, Smart charging for all iPhones (6, 6 plus, 5S, 5C, 5, 4S, 3GS, 3G),iPad Air, iPad Mini, Apple iOS7, iPod,iPod Touch, Samsung Galaxy S4/S3/Note 2/3, Nexus, Sony, Nokia, HTC, LG, Motorora,Huawei, Lenovo, ZTE, GPS,Smartphones & Tablets (Black/Green)
Veetop® Dual USB High Speed (MFI Certified) Car Charger UPGRADE 3.4Amp 15.5W - 2.4A & 1.0A, Smart charging for all iPhones (6, 6 plus, 5S, 5C, 5, 4S, 3GS, 3G),iPad Air, iPad Mini, Apple iOS7, iPod,iPod Touch, Samsung Galaxy S4/S3/Note 2/3, Nexus, Sony, Nokia, HTC, LG, Motorora,Huawei, Lenovo, ZTE, GPS,Smartphones & Tablets (Black/Green)
Offered by Veetop
Price: £10.00

4.0 out of 5 stars Compact 12v to USB (BYOC), 30 Nov 2014
Have tried many 12v to USB chargers. This one does indeed charge anything I have tried, iPad, iPhones and dash-cams. My biggest issue with many 12v adapters is their connection to 12V can be erratic over time, shaking loose with movement. Its down to the placement of the12v socket in your trim and how well it fits that particular socket. The shape and size of the Veetops is quite compact and also seems a better fit and finish staying connected in my 2x 12v extender so I have some flexibility in placement. I partly use an extender as it has its own fuse and nowhere does this Veetop say if it is actually fused (picture does not show one) nor does it come apart to replace one which makes me nervous. Like many chargers it is not easy to see once in place in your vehicle which usb port is the high amp one. The lack of fuse and easy port identification are enough to knock a star off from what otherwise feels a very solid and well finished product. It seems to do its intended job well and in an attractive design.
(BYOC=bring your own cables)
Based on a review sample.


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