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tado° Smart Thermostat with Smartphone Control
tado° Smart Thermostat with Smartphone Control
Price: £159.99

3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Started off okay but now sadly disappointed, 20 May 2015
Update 12th June 2015 - downgraded from 4 to 2 stars. Unfortunately after using this system with its companion Extension Kit I will have to downgrade its rating. It is now actually costing me more money to use this system.

The Extension kit controls the heating of water via the wireless bridge, it has several modes, On, Off, Auto and Scheduled. I chose to use Scheduled, which is the most economicall setting. When it works it is fine, however if the Bridge loses wireless connectivity it fails quite badly. Upon disconnection It automatically turns on the water heating for several hours and you cannot change this functionality. I was able to view the visual log of this within the Tado app; the wireless connection dropped at 1.30am and heated the water up until 3.30am, whilst I was asleep. This is now costing me more money than my original setup. I've attached some photos, the one with the red bars indicates the times that the water was being heated immediately after a flatline disconnect.

I'm very disappointed that it does not work because it has so much potential, but unfortunately I will be sending back both the Thermostat and the Extension Kit as unfit for my purpose. I would like to think that within a year they'll have a better solution however for now I cannot afford to have the system running rogue with my heating bills.

Below is my original review for reference:

I am impressed with the technology behind this unit and the system as a whole. I had a somewhat shaky start but it appears to be working fine now. I'll explain more about this later..

You will need:

- A Smart Phone, it can work in manual mode too however it's price tag is closely matched to the technology involved; so a smart phone really is a must. If you do not have or want a smart phone then this is not for you. Buying this will be a waste of your money because you'll simply not be using the technology.

- A Broadband Router with a spare network cable socket (for example a BT Home Hub 4 or 5 has several sockets available at the back) This is required to install a small box that acts as a 'Bridge' to the wireless Thermostat. This all works automatically over your existing WiFi connection.

- To be aware that your location information will be automatically sent via the Tado network to your Bridge to track where you are. Effectively your Smart Phone will detect how close you are to your home using Geo-location and turn on the heating (if it needs to) so that by the time you get home your house is nice and warm. This is its main flagship feature!

- Patience. As with all tech there will be glitches and the 'unforeseen' Its exciting to have the latest technology but it does not always work the first time. See 'A Shaky Start' below for my experience of this.

And finally, DIY skills are a bonus but not necessary. The optional £50 fee for an installer is well worth considering if you're not comfortable with wiring things. That being said the online step-by-step instructions are well considered and very easy to follow if you're competent with a screwdriver (which by-the-way is included in the box!)

A Shaky Start...

I decided to rent my thermostat directly from Tado.com, its around £7 a month. There is a buy option too if I am happy with its performance.

When received the 'Bridge' and Thermostat have to be registered online. They each have a unique serial and pin number printed on a label, I followed the instructions and they were metaphorically 'tattooed' to my online Tado account. I then had to choose what type of setup I have: i.e. Type of Thermostat, Timer and Boiler and their manufacturer/model names - these are all selected from a comprehensive drop down list . I was able to select my Thermostat and Timer but not my boiler (this was my first sticking point)

As my boiler was not listed in the 'setup wizard' the workflow went into a holding state stating that "An Engineer will contact you" This was a literal full stop. It was not possible to continue with the online setup. I left it for a few days expecting an engineer to contact me. Whilst waiting I decided to setup a new Tado account with a different email address; this time I chose a boiler that I thought was 'close' to the one I have. This allowed me to continue through the wizard a few steps further.

My next sticking point was the Bridge - it was faulty and would not connect to my router. It was now impossible for me to continue.. I was very frustrated at this stage, more so because after several days of waiting an engineer had still not contacted me. I sent Customer Support an email.

At this point things get much better. Tado Customer Support in truth; is very good.. They completely understood my predicament; they were very apologetic and immediately sent me a new bridge. They consolidated my two accounts into the original one and everything began to fall back into place.

I received the replacement bridge,had it re-registered by Customer Support and was able to setup the Thermostat with relatively little fuss. I did have to call them to double check that my wiring was okay, they confirmed that it was and the system was up and running within 20 minutes.

I do have the Extension Kit too (still in its box) - when installed it will enable the Hot Water to be controlled by my smartphone too. I will not be installing this just yet though. Currently, it does not have a 'Boost' option which would effectively allow me to turn on the hot water for an hour. I am informed that this will be in the next firmware update and by the end of the year (2015). Once this has been confirmed I'll simply clip the Extension Kit onto the existing Timer back plate and I should be good to go!

I will test it out over the coming winter months and see if it has provided any cost savings.

All things considered I do think it is an impressive system, the build quality is good, it looks stylish and I am now very happy with the level of customer support; which for me is the most important aspect.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jan 15, 2016 7:36 PM GMT


Manuka Health Mgo 400 Manuka Honey, 500g
Manuka Health Mgo 400 Manuka Honey, 500g
Price: £50.02

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Simple Guide to Manuka Ratings, 28 Mar. 2015
- By 2016 all suppliers of Manuka Honey must use the MGO rating
- Reasearchers have indicated that a MGO rating of above 100 is required for reliable antibacterial activity
- Do not blend it with food or mix with a hot drink, this will degrade its effectiveness, consume it directly from a teaspoon.
- "Always read the label for more information "
- Search MGO MANUKA for further details

ENJOY! :)


10 G4 Warm White 24 LED 3528 SMD Camper Marine Boat Spot Light Lamp Bulb DC 12V
10 G4 Warm White 24 LED 3528 SMD Camper Marine Boat Spot Light Lamp Bulb DC 12V
Offered by Universal Color
Price: £6.34

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars I'm not convinced these are safe to use ..., 11 Feb. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Started to connect these to our under cupboard lights in the kitchen. Connecting the third one caused the previous two to dim. I then connected the fourth and the previous three all burnt out (literally with smoke). These do come from China and do not conform to British Standards, so use them at your own risk. Mine have been relegated to the bin. Too dangerous for me I'm afraid.


Digital Underfloor Heating Thermostat. Suitable For Almost All Electric Heating Systems. Includes Floor & Air Sensor. White Back Light. Max 16Amp Load
Digital Underfloor Heating Thermostat. Suitable For Almost All Electric Heating Systems. Includes Floor & Air Sensor. White Back Light. Max 16Amp Load
Offered by Total Tiles Ltd
Price: £27.99

13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars *** you can't beat heat on your feet ***, 29 Feb. 2012
This is a pretty good unit. Pressing any of the buttons illuminates the display in a somewhat calming blue glow of light. It does exude good quality and craftsmanship.

It comes complete with a comprehensive installation and operational guide. This one was bought to replace a cheaper model which had a habit of losing its timer settings each and every time we experienced a power cut. This one has a built in backup battery - no more reprogramming for me now :)

It also has a floor and air sensor; an effective eco-friendly feature. If the air temperature has reached your defined level it will not turn on the floor heating, this results in saving you money on unnecessary heating bills. Pretty much everything is configurable so if you prefer not to use the air temperature sensor it can be turned off.

There is a 'Holiday' mode too, again with saving money in mind the holiday mode switches over to a lower temperature setting whilst your away.

Alll in all I think this is a great Thermostat. Plenty of thought has gone into its design and I would certainly recommend it.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Apr 15, 2014 5:39 PM BST


NEOPRENE WAIST WARMER (TO 40" WAIST) - VELCRO FITTING
NEOPRENE WAIST WARMER (TO 40" WAIST) - VELCRO FITTING
Offered by arwmotorcycles
Price: £12.59

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars !!! Toastie !!!, 3 Feb. 2012
A very simple solution for keeping your back warm.

I wear one of these when the weather is chilly and I have somewhat of a long walk ahead of me. Of course its main function is for motor cyclists, however you can wear it for any task where you'd like to keep your back warm and/or supported.

If like me you enjoy a refreshing walk in the winter months you'll know that a cold breeze can really slow you down and make you feel tired. Wearing one of these not only keeps your energy levels up, it acts as a great wind-breaker too - considering the exorbitant price of some of the high end wind protector jackets, this is certainly a very cost effective solution.

Combine this waist warmer with a scarf and you have the perfect central heating mechanism that keeps your core temperature at an optimum level. Ideal for Fishing, Hiking, Cycling, Gardening, Star Gazing and Outdoor Photography amongst many others.

Highly recommended and will not break the budget either!


Samsung HW-D450 Airtrack 2.1ch Home Cinema System
Samsung HW-D450 Airtrack 2.1ch Home Cinema System

10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars >-- It's Behind You! ---<, 22 Dec. 2011
A very impressive piece of equipment. Sound technology is somewhat of a fine Art and the Boffins at Samsung do seem to know their 'stuff'

It comes in two main parts, the Sound Bar and the 'Wireless' Sub-Woofer. There are three ways of connecting it to a sound source: Fibre Optic cable, Phono (both supplied) and the option of plugging in a small Jack plug - perhaps for an MP3 player and/or other device.

I used the Fibre Optic cable and plugged it directly into the TV - not all TV's have this connection, however most do have the Phono type. The sound bar is plugged into a normal power socket and comes complete with its own remote control. The Sub-Woofer was discreetly placed behind the sofa and also plugged into the mains - as it is wireless there are, thankfully - no trailing cables!

The woofer is synced to the sound bar by pressing a small button (with an opened paper clip) for a few seconds until the connection is made. That is it! - the unit is now ready to Rock'n Roll :)

Turn on the Tv and the Sound Bar automatically turns on too, this is a configurable setting which can be adjusted by the Sound Bar Remote. Then choose the type of Sound you'd like to listen too, from Cinema, Music, Speech and more. There is also a 3D sound option! - I have no idea how it works but the phrase 'It's Behind You!' is very relevant. :)

My Word! When I turned it on the latest 'Transformer' movie was showing. Wow! The sound effects were mind blowingly realistic. Of course, sitting on the sofa (with the sub-woofer behind me) there was a fourth dimension = VIBRATION!!

THIS IS AN AMAZING PIECE OF KIT

There is one thing that you'll probably want to consider. If you have Sky the Sky Remote Control cannot be configured to adjust the volume on the Sound Bar, you will have to use the dedicated remote for this. However, if like me you don't like many remotes floating around; invest in an all-for-one remote, with a 'Learning' capability. This can be configured to control everything including the Sky Box, DVD, TV and Sound Bar.

In summary, if you like quality sound and appreciate the lack of trailing wires and speaker stands, then this is certainly one sound system to consider. It is awesome!


ROLAND HD-1 Electronic drums E-drums kit
ROLAND HD-1 Electronic drums E-drums kit

8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars !! Sticks & Toms oOo A Very Nice Drum Kit !!, 22 Oct. 2011
If you're reading this review my guess is that you've already made up your mind that you're going to buy this kit...one day! So, with that in mind I hope the following review stokes your enthusiasm that little bit more :)

This is a very well made, precision drum kit. Arguably; buying this kit will be one of the best decisions you have made as a budding beginner, a hobbyist or a "going through a mid-life crisis" forty or fifty something year old.

It comes folded and requires basic assembly. It is very easy to do. You'll need to purchase some Sticks, a Stool and a MIDI to USB cable if you want to link it up to your PC. If you don't have a set of headphones; these would be a wise purchase too. Search around; many places offer 'bundled' deals that contain most of these extras - it will certainly work out cheaper that way.

There is a matching, but optional speaker that can be purchased too, it has equal build quality and responds with a very satisfying Bass response. Another optional purchase is Roland's Drumming Tutor Software - if you're new to drumming it offers a good foundation for 'getting into the groove'

It has 10 pre-programmed kits, selectable via 5 buttons, each button having two variations. There is a 'MIX IN' sound source, a Sound OUTPUT, Headphone socket and a MIDI OUT.

The kit itself has a Snare, 3xTomToms, Crash, Ride and High-Hat Cymbals and of course a Bass Pedal.

If you're new to drumming you'll find it very comfortable and rewarding to use.

And finally, not all extras cost money - if you visit Roland's web site you'll find a Free piece of software named 'Friend Jam' - download this and you can compete with other users on the Internet for the top Jamming spot!

"Go on... You know you want one!" :))
Comment Comments (4) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Nov 21, 2011 6:22 PM GMT


Moor Wireless Stereo Bluetooth Headset
Moor Wireless Stereo Bluetooth Headset

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars <<< Simply Amazing Tech >>>, 15 Oct. 2011
A beautifully engineered set of headphones. They are light-weight, stylish and fit 'quite' well.

They come complete with a USB to Micro-USB cable which can be plugged into a PC or power adaptor (separate purchase) for charging. If you have an Apple charger; plug in this cable and this will work fine too.

The sound quality is biased towards the lower and mid-range levels. They are ideal for listening to music whilst commuting, working out in the gym or for running. The internal; fixed battery will last several hours depending on how high their volume is set.

Each side has remote controls for Volume Up/Down (left side control) and Track Fwd/Back, Power On/Off & Answer Call (Right side controls) - they also double-up as a wireless headset and microphone for linking up to a mobile phone for making and taking calls!

They come with a comprehensive user guide which details how to pair them to your device and how to use the multitude of features by way of 'pressing, holding and double tapping' the various function buttons.

Why four stars?

This is mainly due to the comfort of the fitting - for most people I think they'll be fine, however the in-ear speakers are at a fixed angle and may feel slightly uncomfortable in one or both ears. The other reason for the one star drop is the LED light that flashes when in operation; in a dim lit room it does flash brightly - I covered mine with a little black sticker; although this only stops the dazzle but not the glow.

These two criticisms do not detract from how good and reasonably priced these headphones are though. I would certainly recommend them


No Title Available

8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars :::: Plush, Comfortable & Affordable ::::, 2 Oct. 2011
It is true to say that Doublju clothes are made for people who are slim or athletic. If you do decide to order anything be sure to order the correct 'UK' size! Ordering clothes online will always have an element of 'Luck' involved, however I am pleased that I took the gamble.

I purchased the brown coloured version of this top and I am very pleased with it too. It is a snug, soft fit - it feels like you're being hugged. Additionally, the material is breathable so you'll not get too hot or bothered wearing it in finer weather.

Doublju's styling is unique, good quality and affordable. They certainly are realistically priced when compared to the high end branded names of similar styling. Shipping is quite expensive as they are shipped from Korea - I would recommend that you bulk order to get a better return on your shipping costs.

Finally, I would advise that you take a close look at their pictures before buying anything (zoom in if you can) just to be sure that you're getting exactly what you think you're getting. Due to their 'funky' designs there may be a particular part of the clothing that has a fashionable hole or gap in a place that you were least expecting. If you're unsure of anything; send them an email - they are really friendly and helpful!

I will certainly be ordering more shirts from them.


Apple iPad 2 Wi-Fi + 3G - Tablet - 64 GB - 9.7" IPS ( 1024 x 768 ) - rear cam...
Apple iPad 2 Wi-Fi + 3G - Tablet - 64 GB - 9.7" IPS ( 1024 x 768 ) - rear cam...

54 of 59 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars ***DUMMIES GUIDE TO THE IPAD***, 26 Sept. 2011
So, you're thinking of buying an iPad however, you're not so sure of what it can do and how it works. So, here is the "Dummies Guide to the iPad" to help you make that decision. "I promise to keep the jargon down to a bare minimum" : )

To begin with the iPad must be paired to an existing Laptop or Desktop PC. These can be normal Microsoft Windows or Mac PC's. Once paired you can use the iPad by itself. It only has to be paired once. Although, there is a rumour that the next generation will work straight out of the box.

You will be able to:

-Touch and pinch the screen to type words and move things around
-Send and Receive Emails
-Browse the Internet including Online Banking, Internet Shopping and more...
-Listen to Music, including the Radio when there is a Wireless (Wi-Fi) connection
-Watch Videos and Movies
-Write and Print Letters (see the section on 'Printing' further down)
-Download and Play Games
-Become a Smarter Person (more on this later)
-Display Pictures - it is an electronic Picture Frame too!
-Take Pictures and Movies, if it has the onboard camera (iPad2 and newer)
-Have a chat with the relatives abroad using Video Conferencing technology
-Download THOUSANDS of books into a snazzy Book Reader that you can actually turn pages on the screen with
-There are loads more - I'll leave them as a surprise if you decide to buy one :)

You will NOT be able to:

-Watch a special type of animation or movie using a technology known as 'Flash' - don't worry about this though, you'll hear lots of people complaining about it. It really is no big deal and you'll learn to live without it. Over time, many of the popular web sites will move away from using Flash and use a newer technology that DOES work on iPads.
-Insert a CD (there is no slot and you don't actually need one)
-In fact, there is not much else you can't do with an iPad :

THE WIZARDS

No, not the ones' from Oz! Wizards are helpful programs that magically pop up and automatically configure things like the Internet and Email connections for you. The iPad has more Wizards than you can wave a wand at! When you first switch it on and whenever you need to set something up it will automatically present you with a Wizard. Therefore setting things up is as easy as 1-2-3.

The iPad is also an iPod!! - Loading music is done in one of two ways.

1 - install the free version of iTunes onto your normal PC and follow the Wizards instructions to download your music from the 'iTunes Store' or transfer your music from your favourite CD collection. Then, connect the iPad to your computer using the supplied cable and it will automatically 'Synchronise' your music to the iPad. Yup, you guessed it - using yet another Wizard!

2 - iTunes is a built in application (or App) on the iPad itself. Tap this App to search for and download your music directly to the iPad. You could even download a movie or your favourite episode of 24 too!

Once the music is on there just tap the iPod App to listen to it. Easy-Peasy!

APPS

The iPad extensively uses Apps. Apps are downloaded, using Wi-Fi. This is why you don't need a CD drive. These are the icons that are displayed on the screen.

Apps are downloaded from the Internet using yet another App called: "The App Store". Tap this icon to search for or see a list of the most popular Apps available, some are paid for and some are free! Tap the 'Install' button next to the one you'd like, follow the Wizards instructions and the App will automatically download and appear as a new icon on the screen.

LOADING PICTURES

These can be loaded onto the iPad using iTunes, Email or the 'Camera Connection Kit' - this is a separate adaptor (£25) that plugs into the bottom of the iPad. Just insert the memory card from your camera into the adaptor and it will automatically load the pictures into the built in Photo App.

THE PICTURE FRAME

When the iPad is locked (by pressing the button on the top-right side) and then back on again, you'll see a little icon in the lower right side corner of the display. Tap this and the Photo App will automatically display your pictures in full screen mode, converting the iPad into a digital Photo frame! It is a great feature. This means that you can leave the ipad on the shelf, literally as part of your rooms decor! You may want to purchase a 'Dock (£25)' to have the iPad tilted and supported at just the right angle.

Tip: if you need a reason to justify buying an iPad to your wife - use the Picture Frame one!!

PRINTING

Printing is done wirelessly, however you MUST use one of the wireless printers detailed on the apple.com website. Typically, it will not print to anything other than one of those printers. There is one caveat to this statement, it is possible to print to any wireless printer if you pay for and download a third party App that is available via the App Store - use the search keywords 'wireless printing' to find it.

It is also possible to email whatever you'd like to print and pick it up on your normal PC for printing.

Finally, I mentioned that you could become a Smarter Person by using an iPad - in fact this is not a joke. There are thousands of educational Apps including ones' for learning Astronomy through to learning how to read and play music and even Apps that will help you learn a new language. The possibilities are literally right at your finger tips!!

If you're unsure of which size to buy just buy the largest one you can afford. I have a 32GB version and have only used half of its capacity even with some very large Apps installed.

The iPad is many things to many people and the information above is just scratching the surface.

"I hope this review helps you make the right decision and I also hope that I did not use too much confusing jargon."

Good luck!!

*** update 12th October 2011 ***

Apple have released their new Operating System (iOS 5)

Amongst many new and enhanced features there is now the ability to synchronise data across multiple Devices. They call it 'iCloud' - think of iCloud as a 'Virtual Filing Cabinet' to store your Documents, Diary and a record of your downloaded media from iTunes. Always accessible as long as there is an internet connection.

iCloud also allows the iPad to be used without having to 'Pair' it with a computer. It will now work straight out of the box!
Comment Comments (5) | Permalink | Most recent comment: May 9, 2012 4:10 PM BST


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