Profile for Stephen Doran > Reviews

Personal Profile

Content by Stephen Doran
Top Reviewer Ranking: 437,677
Helpful Votes: 48

Learn more about Your Profile.

Reviews Written by
Stephen Doran "dorandoran" (London)

Page: 1 | 2
PURE EVOKE Flow, Portable DAB/FM/Internet Radio
PURE EVOKE Flow, Portable DAB/FM/Internet Radio
Offered by Radioworld
Price: £145.00

5.0 out of 5 stars A seriously competent internet radio, 22 Oct 2009
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I have read of lot of comments about this radio so I wanted to share my personal experience of this radio. First of all, it's PRIMARY FUNCTION is that of "Internet Radio", sure you have DAB, FM etc, however I am pretty sure that most people will be purchasing this to listen to music via the internet.

When I researched buying this first time round, I was put off by a lot of negative comments regarding the need to sign up to something called "The Lounge", a whole load of techie people were saying this was irrelevant etc. However, I know own 6 of these (three in London, two in Spain and one in the US). Wherever I have put them, they connect instantly and constantly to the chosen radio stations. Obviously, the first time you have to connect them to your wifi with passwords etc which I am guessing some people will find easier than others. But it works. By contrast, I recently purchased a Heritage Internet radio for an office and immediately encountered totally different problems, screens saong "decode error", "code error", "no signal" etc, all in a space about 45ms sq. Bizarrely, when I took my dear old Pure Evoke, it worked first time.

It is BECAUSE of "The Lounge" that these work so well. Baiscally these radios connect to Pure's own "The Lounge" to obtain the stream of the stations you choose. This means it is much more reliable than the beautiful (but useless Heritage). Another consideration if you live outside of the UK and want UK radio is that because these radios stream from "The Lounge", not the stations directly, the stations cannot detect where you are connecting from. Increasingly DRM is coming into internet radio so some UK stations like SmoothFM are beginning to IP-lock their broadcasts based on the listeners home IP address. Hell you even get a European plug in the box!

Yeah I have gripes, another type of box that wasn't Piano Black would be nice (this finish shows dust and grease immediately), I would like to program alarms for just weekdays for example, and it is nuts that there is no Ethernet cable on the back of the box to plug it into the internet (ie, not relying on wifi which can be complicated in some environments like old buildings etc). But it works, I have all these little radios dotted around my world and they all perform beautifully.

The Da Vinci Code (Robert Langdon)
The Da Vinci Code (Robert Langdon)
by Dan Brown
Edition: Paperback

9 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Nice plot, shame about the book, 9 Nov 2004
Well, half the planet's read it by now. I read this without knowing anything about the "fame" of the book and it's multi-billion sales (I live in a village in Spain and picked this up at an airport for a quick read). I nearly threw it in the bin about 1/3rd of the way through as just a poorly written thriller type novel (yawn yawn), but this book definitely improves if you stick with it to unravel the "whodunnit" part of the mystery. In the end I was obsessed with "finishing" the novel and I enjoyed the end so much I then tried to read it again about 2 months later (terrible decision, the only hook here is the mystery). What stays with you, in my opinion is the whole "Holy Grail" mystery/conspiracy thang and, that it's very well painted. I was in the Louvre (where the book starts and ends) and I will make a point of going back there to relive these scenes for myself (even counting the number of window panes in the glass pyramids...) just to see. I've read worse and frankly, if you've got a 4+ hour flight ahead of you buy the book and go for it in one session!
Incidentally, like half the planet I then backtracked his novels prior to this one thinking I'd get more of the same : DON'T EVEN CONSIDER IT --- !! This one has flaws, the earlier novels are just dreadful.
Summing up, it's one helluva plot, shame that a more experienced or able writer (my current fave is Lawrence Block... look him up on Amazon) didn't get to rewrite Dan Brown's first version all over again. Enjoy!

Hercule Poirot: the Complete Short Stories
Hercule Poirot: the Complete Short Stories
by Agatha Christie
Edition: Paperback
Price: £13.59

19 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars No better bang for your buck, 23 Jan 2004
Absolutely brilliant collection of short crime fiction. It's a little bulky to manage but for a traveller on the move (or at home on a story a night) it's about as much fun as you can have with your pijamas on!! I had pre-judged Poirot on some pretty poor-rate Hollywood movies and (in my opinion) an over-styled Granada TV series. The novels are well worth this exploratory read and at the cover price you'd be hard pushed to find better value for money. A perfect companion to a long flight or a busy schedule.

Page: 1 | 2