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Profile for Dr. Paul Ell > Reviews

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Content by Dr. Paul Ell
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Reviews Written by
Dr. Paul Ell (NI, UK)
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Gillette Fusion ProGlide Power Razor with Flexball Technology Plus 3 Blades
Gillette Fusion ProGlide Power Razor with Flexball Technology Plus 3 Blades
Price: £14.49

11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Sensible technical advance, 19 Mar. 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Gillette's latest iteration in their Fusion range. The key change is the 'flexball' feature. This allows the blade head to move from right to left, and left to right, when in use. It isn't a ball as such as it does not allow universal movement of the blade head - if that's their next innovation I'm copyrighting it first! What it does allow is the blade to follow your face more exactly. This seems like a logical additional feature and in many ways I'm surprised they didn't come up with it before.

I'm a habitual user of Gillette Fusion razors and this gives at least a comparable shave to other versions of the system. Logically this system should give a better shave but using earlier versions it was pretty good and I can't detect any immediate improvement. Nonetheless I'll probably switch to the Flexball system. Equally, adopting any innovation going, I prefer the 'Power' version of the Fusion range and again will stick with this. I think the vibration makes the razor slightly smoother in use.

Perennial issue with Gillette 'high end' razors is the cost of replacement blades, and especially the price difference between 'Power' and 'Manual' blades. There's no difference here. Replacement blades are expensive. I'll stand the cost albeit reluctantly. It's worth checking on Amazon to see the best offers for blades. Often a new razor and blades can cost less than the blades alone. Another point, a reviewer has suggested you have to buy Flexball blades to work with this razor. Certainly other Fusion blades work fine so that's not the case.

With this pack you get a Power Flexball razor, a battery and four blades.


VAX W85-PP-T Dual Power Pro Carpet Washer, 1200 W
VAX W85-PP-T Dual Power Pro Carpet Washer, 1200 W
Price: £179.00

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Top notch model, 9 Mar. 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
If you're feel a serious need for a carpet washer this is one of the models you should consider. It has a large reservoir for fresh water, automatically releases and mixes carpet cleaner from a smaller receptacle, and has a large container for the dirty water. The suction with the machine is outstanding. Carpets are left remarkably near-dry after using the cleaner. There's also a separate suction hose and tool best used for cleaning small areas or sucking up and cleaning accidental spills. A separate attachment allows it to be used on hard floors.

I've dropped a star because it's a big machine. A problem in use and potentially for storage. That said it's not a machine you'll be using twice a week so perhaps weight in use is of less relevance. When using you have to be coordinated in releasing the carpet cleaner (ideally when pushing the VAX forward and apply suction when pulling the VAX back). It just takes a bit of getting used to. Also at the moment the machine is a bit expensive. VAX seem to heavily discount other models.

But as a carpet cleaner this is hard to beat.


Tefal Pressure Cooker Secure 5 Neo 6 L
Tefal Pressure Cooker Secure 5 Neo 6 L
Price: £54.65

5.0 out of 5 stars Faultless so far..., 9 Mar. 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I've always been a bit nervous of pressure cookers. Too many memories of, as a child, fearing my mother's was going to explode - and the one occasion when it did. Well technology has moved on in this Tefal model. The valve is easily removable, it has two pressure levels (one for vegetables, one for meat and frozen food), and there's a simple pressure relief valve. Finally there's an old-style gasket if everything else fails! .So I'm happy this is not going to explode!

In other respects this is a robust stainless steel pressure cooker (the Amazon-supplied version is certainly not aluminium as another reviewer has suggested) and is suitable for all types of hobs. It's robust as you'd expect from a pressure cooker. It comes with a steam basket and trivet for cooking some foods.

The pressure cooker, guaranteed for 10 years, comes with useful cooking guidance for various foods. For those not familiar with the technology, potatoes immersed in water take 6 minutes to cook, a whole chicken 22 minutes, so the pressure makes a difference! I particularly like the build quality and the easy pressure settings.

Overall I can't really find anything to fault in this pressure cooker. So five stars. Any problems and I'll report back.


Kenley 3in1 Buffet Server Hot Food Plate Warmer - 3 Trays x 1.5L - Stainless Steel
Kenley 3in1 Buffet Server Hot Food Plate Warmer - 3 Trays x 1.5L - Stainless Steel
Offered by Smart Parts UK, Digital Lifestyle Retailer
Price: £29.90

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Poor Quality, 7 Mar. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Well, this Kenley hot plate works, more or less. It can be used to heat plates, keep food warm on plates, or can be used with the three food dishes to keep food hot. It has a variable heat control which works well.

But there are serious quality issues. The metal frame the three food bowls sit it was bent for the product I received. The hot plate itself was also dented in a couple of places. I'd normally discount these sorts of issues due to potential damage in transit but to be fair the food frame is very flimsy indeed and part of the polystyrene packing material was broken and missing - I assume this happened in the factory. As a further mark of poor quality control one of the rubber legs the hot plate sits on is missing. These are screwed into place so would not detach easily. It wasn't loose in the box - I searched assiduously - so I doubt the leg was ever attached.

The problem with the missing rubber foot means the hot plate is unstable and not really usable. The various dents aren't really acceptable either. So only one star.

The distributor provided me with this product at no charge in return for an independent review. If I'd paid for it I would return if for a refund.


Philips Satin Soft Wet and Dry Epilator
Philips Satin Soft Wet and Dry Epilator
Price: £47.89

3.0 out of 5 stars Nothing new, 5 Mar. 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I'm not sure what justifies the cost of this epistolar. It does nothing new, yes comes with a few very plastic and cheap accessories, there's no innovation. So a workman like effort, nothing special, still painful. If you're interested wait for it to be reduced.

Don't expect anything new here.


Gillette Fusion Proglide Manual 9 Razor Blades + Razor
Gillette Fusion Proglide Manual 9 Razor Blades + Razor
Price: £25.00

4.0 out of 5 stars Innovative, and the best-value pack, 26 Feb. 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Gillette's latest iteration in their Fusion range. The key change is the 'flexball' feature. This allows the blade head to move from right to left, and left to right, when in use. It isn't a ball as such as it does not allow universal movement of the blade head - if that's their next innovation I'm copyrighting it first! What it does allow is the blade to follow your face more exactly. This seems like a logical additional feature and in many ways I'm surprised they didn't come up with it before.

I'm a habitual user of Gillette Fusion razors and this gives at least a comparable shave to other versions of the system. Logically this system should give a better shave but using earlier versions it was pretty good and I can't detect any immediate improvement. Nonetheless I'll probably switch to the Flexball system.

Perennial issue with Gillette 'high end' razors is the cost of replacement blades. There's no difference here. Replacement blades are expensive. I'll stand the cost albeit reluctantly. It's worth checking on Amazon to see the best offers for blades. Often a new razor and blades can cost less than the blades alone. Another point, a reviewer has suggested you have to buy Flexball blades to work with this razor. Certainly other Fusion blades work fine so that's not the case.

With this pack you get a manual (not power) Flexball razor and 10 blades, not nine as the pack suggests, with one on the razor itself. What's missing is a plastic case to hold the razor with the blades. Gillette seems to have phased this out across all the Flexball range which is an irritation.

In general this tends to be the cheapest razor/blade option, often cheaper than buying the blades with no razor! 4 stars.


Gillette Fusion ProGlide Power Men's Razor with Flexball Technology
Gillette Fusion ProGlide Power Men's Razor with Flexball Technology
Offered by Innox Trading
Price: £9.99

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Logical innovation, 25 Feb. 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Gillette's latest iteration in their Fusion range. The key change is the 'flexball' feature. This allows the blade head to move from right to left, and left to right, when in use. It isn't a ball as such as it does not allow universal movement of the blade head - if that's their next innovation I'm copyrighting it first! What it does allow is the blade to follow your face more exactly. This seems like a logical additional feature and in many ways I'm surprised they didn't come up with it before.

I'm a habitual user of Gillette Fusion razors and this gives at least a comparable shave to other versions of the system. Logically this system should give a better shave but using earlier versions it was pretty good and I can't detect any immediate improvement. Nonetheless I'll probably switch to the Flexball system. Equally, adopting any innovation going, I prefer the 'Power' version of the Fusion range and again will stick with this. I think the vibration makes the razor slightly smoother in use.

Perennial issue with Gillette 'high end' razors is the cost of replacement blades, and especially the price difference between 'Power' and 'Manual' blades. There's no difference here. Replacement blades are expensive. I'll stand the cost albeit reluctantly. It's worth checking on Amazon to see the best offers for blades. Often a new razor and blades can cost less than the blades alone. Another point, a reviewer has suggested you have to buy Flexball blades to work with this razor. Certainly other Fusion blades work fine so that's not the case.

With this pack you get a Power Flexball razor, a battery and one blade.


Gillette Fusion ProGlide Manual Razor Starter Kit with Flexball Technology
Gillette Fusion ProGlide Manual Razor Starter Kit with Flexball Technology
Price: £15.00

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Logical innovation, 25 Feb. 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Gillette's latest iteration in their Fusion range. The key change is the 'flexball' feature. This allows the blade head to move from right to left, and left to right, when in use. It isn't a ball as such as it does not allow universal movement of the blade head - if that's their next innovation I'm copyrighting it first! What it does allow is the blade to follow your face more exactly. This seems like a logical additional feature and in many ways I'm surprised they didn't come up with it before.

I'm a habitual user of Gillette Fusion razors and this gives at least a comparable shave to other versions of the system. Logically this system should give a better shave but using earlier versions it was pretty good and I can't detect any immediate improvement. Nonetheless I'll probably switch to the Flexball system.

Perennial issue with Gillette 'high end' razors is the cost of replacement blades. There's no difference here. Replacement blades are expensive. I'll stand the cost albeit reluctantly. It's worth checking on Amazon to see the best offers for blades. Often a new razor and blades can cost less than the blades alone. Another point, a reviewer has suggested you have to buy Flexball blades to work with this razor. Certainly other Fusion blades work fine so that's not the case.

With this pack you get a manual (not power) Flexball razor and five blades. 4 stars.


SeaSucker Talon Quick Release One-Bike Carrier
SeaSucker Talon Quick Release One-Bike Carrier
Price: £234.49

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent versatile bike mount, 24 Feb. 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
A versatile easily attachable, and detachable, bike transport system. I've a Mercedes SLK convertible which has proved challenging in attaching conventional bike racks to. Ideally I need a system that can be very easily be attached and detached from the car. Whilst with a bike attached to the roof it's fairly easy to remember not to turn the car into an open top, with just a rack attached, inadvertent converting of the convertible is a strong possibility!

So from this perspective the SeaSucker is a success. While it took me 20 minutes to attach the rack and bike on first use, this was because I was unfamiliar with the system, had a bit of trouble getting the bike front wheel off, and wanted to make absolutely sure that the bike didn't fall off the car! After a few uses I think it takes only about 5 minutes to attach the rack, and less time to detach it.

In use a bike is held securely in place. A very considerable pressure would be needed to detach the SeaSucker suction pads. In fact I suspect that the locking system holding the forks at the front of the bike, or the velcro holding the rear wheel in place, are more likely to fail. Key through are several rules to follow from the manufacturer. First, don't exceed 75mph. Second, make sure that the indicator bands on the suction pumps are not evident. Others have described this warning system which is simplicity itself but very effective in making sure the suction pads are held strongly in place. Third, make sure the bike does not exceed 45 pounds, and finally check every four hours. On first use I attached the rack and then left it overnight to make sure the seals were holding.

So for my particular requirements this bike rack works very well indeed. Even with the challenging shape of an SLK (with metal roof, a fabric soft top will defeat the system) a bike can be attached either partly attached to the front or rear window. It's easy to attach and detach. I see no damage at all to the car's paintwork. Overall an elegant solution.

Shortcomings, well you have to do something with the bike's front wheel - a problem with the SLK. SeaSucker sell something they call a 'flight deck' which holds the front wheel with the rear. Good, but another cost. Plus I'd like to have seen a longer warranty. You get one-year only. Finally easy detachment could mean an easily stolen bike. The manufacturer sells a cable security system to stop this happening.


Igenix IG9030 PTC Ceramic Fan Heater 1,800 W - Silver
Igenix IG9030 PTC Ceramic Fan Heater 1,800 W - Silver
Price: £23.87

2.0 out of 5 stars Cheap and (fairly) nasty, 20 Feb. 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
This is an inexpensive 1,800 watt fan heater. It has two heat settings and a fan only setting, a basic thermostat control and an auto turn off if it overbalances. It is also fitted with an auto cut off if overheating is detected.

Thinking positively most notably the heater is small - 26cm high and 18 wide - much smaller than I expected. It's also relatively quiet in operation.

However, the heater shows all the hallmarks of a cheap Chinese import. The build quality is poor. The screws on the base of the heater are poorly fixed, the silver case of mine is scratched, the polystyrene packing material had oil stains on it and the power cable also has stain marks. Other limitations, well higher powered fan heaters are available, there's only one fan speed, there's no built in frost protection, the thermostat is not fixed by a pre-defined temperature - you turn the thermostat down when optimum room is reached and the heater then maintains that temperature whatever that temperature is.

Overall this is a basic heater which will do a fair job. I'd be very tempted to go for something a bit better though and by a more established manufacturer.


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