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scottishwildcat (Co.Meath, Ireland)

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Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ40EB-K Compact Camera - Black (18.2MP, 20x Optical Zoom Leica DC Lens, Wi-Fi with NFC, Built in GPS, 24mm Wide Angle, 50P Full HD Video - AVCHD) 3 inch LCD
Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ40EB-K Compact Camera - Black (18.2MP, 20x Optical Zoom Leica DC Lens, Wi-Fi with NFC, Built in GPS, 24mm Wide Angle, 50P Full HD Video - AVCHD) 3 inch LCD

4.0 out of 5 stars Great to keep in your pocket, 8 Mar. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I wasn't desperately needing a new camera, but didn't have a compact and was given some Amazon vouchers, so I thought I'd treat myself.

Pros: great optical zoom, plenty of good automatic and manual settings, takes good HD videos.
Cons: pictures can still be a bit dull and soft, even in daylight, never have managed to get the WiFi working properly for transferring pictures wirelessly.

It's a fantastic camera to chuck in your bag or pocket whenever you go out, as it's small, light and far superior to any phone camera. But it's not going to replace your bridge or DSLR anytime soon.


TP-LINK TL-WPA4220 AV500 Powerline 300M Wi-Fi Extender/Wi-Fi Booster/Hotspot with Two Ethernet Ports (Easy Configuration, Wi-Fi Clone for Smartphone/Tablets/Laptop)
TP-LINK TL-WPA4220 AV500 Powerline 300M Wi-Fi Extender/Wi-Fi Booster/Hotspot with Two Ethernet Ports (Easy Configuration, Wi-Fi Clone for Smartphone/Tablets/Laptop)
Price: £32.98

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Works well, but was tricky to add to existing Powerline network, 8 Mar. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I was adding this to an existing Powerline network consisting of two TP-Link AV600 wired-only adapters, but despite numerous attempts, it wouldn't pair with those automatically using the pairing buttons. And while I did manage to get it to extend my WiFi network automatically, it didn't pick the best WiFi channel so the signal wasn't as good as it should have been.

So in the end, I had to download the Powerline configuration app from TP-Link's website (luckily there is now a Mac version) and configure it manually, which was ultimately a good thing anyway as my other two Powerline adapters were using their default security settings, and I never like to leave network devices doing that. Then I had to log in to the adapter's web interface to set up the WiFi the way I wanted. That's obviously all more hassle than I'd have liked, but on the plus side, at least it was all possible.

Once all up and running, it does what it's supposed to do very well--I'm still surprised at how well Powerline technology works. It's a pity that there's no AV600 version available yet, but I'm sure they'll get there eventually.


Moto G Flip Cover - Royal Blue
Moto G Flip Cover - Royal Blue
Price: £12.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Nice, but not perfect, 8 Mar. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I usually prefer sleeves to flip cases for my phones, but I liked the idea of this one: it doesn't add much bulk as it replaces the whole back of the phone rather than just clipping onto it, and the magnetic front cover automatically wakes/sleeps the phone which is far easier than pressing the power button every time you remove it from a sleeve (though you'll still need to go through whatever security feature you've enabled when it wakes).

In practice I'm fairly happy with it, but it's not perfect.

The front cover folds all the way round the back when opened, which is great for using the phone comfortably in one hand, but the downside is the hinge isn't quite sturdy enough to let you stand the phone on your desk, either in portrait or landscape mode.

You can have the front cover shut while you're taking a call, but unless I'm missing something there's no way of answering the phone without opening the cover anyway (or even seeing who's calling if you can't tell by the ringtone), in which case it's just as easy to keep it open afterwards.

When shut, even though it's magnetic the front cover does still slide around over the screen more than I'd like. Although the inside of the cover itself is a soft material, if you did get a bit of grit or something between cover and screen while in your bag or pocket, this does increase the likelihood of scratching a bit as it moves around. Plus, while it's moving around, it's exposing one edge or the other of the phone in the process, leaving that edge susceptible to scuffs and scratches until the cover slides back.

The right edge of the front cover is also starting to fray very slightly from being taken in and out of my pocket, after a month or so of normal use. Remains to be seen whether it will stop at that or continue to wear away.

Other than that, my only other complaint is the range of colours available... they're pretty dull. I narrowed it down to blue and red in the end and ended up going for blue, but none of the available colours really made me think "that makes the phone look great".


[Upgraded Version]VicTsing Waterproof Portable Wireless Bluetooth 3.0 Mini Speaker 3W Shower Pool Car Handsfree with Microphone for Apple iPhone 4 4S 5 5S 5C 6 iPhone 6 Plus Samsung Galaxy S5 S4 iPad iPod MP3 MP4 Tablet PC - Yellow
[Upgraded Version]VicTsing Waterproof Portable Wireless Bluetooth 3.0 Mini Speaker 3W Shower Pool Car Handsfree with Microphone for Apple iPhone 4 4S 5 5S 5C 6 iPhone 6 Plus Samsung Galaxy S5 S4 iPad iPod MP3 MP4 Tablet PC - Yellow
Offered by VICTECH
Price: £17.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Very decent speaker for the price, 8 Mar. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Speaker was a little bigger than I expected it to be from the pictures, but that's never a bad thing for sound quality and it certainly packs a decent punch for the money. Instructions are brief but I had it paired with my Android phone (Moto G) in seconds. Loses a star for a sucker that doesn't really stick to any surface in my bathroom very well, but that's not a big deal. Recommended.


Crimestopper: Fighting Crime on Scotland's Streets
Crimestopper: Fighting Crime on Scotland's Streets
Price: £1.89

3.0 out of 5 stars Real life Taggart, 4 Mar. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
There are some interesting, some dark and some amusing stories here, especially if you're from the area and remember some of the higher profile cases the author worked on. The ad-hoc grouping of unrelated stories into chapters jars a bit, though, and the author isn't blessed with the most extensive writing skills so the going is a bit monotonous at times.


Race Pro (Xbox 360)
Race Pro (Xbox 360)
Offered by STOCKTASTIC
Price: £32.08

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars For the serious Xbox driver, 4 Mar. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Race Pro (Xbox 360) (Video Game)
This is a valiant attempt at a proper console racing sim from SimBin, better known for their high quality GTR sim racing series on PC.

The presentation isn't what you could call polished. But there are plenty of accurately modelled cars and tracks, and the actual driving and racing is solid, though the track environments feel somewhat barren and there are occasional graphical tearing issues. The usual racing game modes are present and correct, with hot lapping, career mode, multiplayer and online races to amuse you.

Unfortunately, the experience is marred for wheel owners by an annoying force feedback bug that requires you to start the game with a controller, then sign out and sign back in with the wheel to get force feedback to work. And of course, nowadays there's hardly anyone to race against online. But if you just like tinkering with and tuning virtual cars, and fancy an alternative to the mighty Forza Motorsport series, you won't go far wrong with this.


Novero Brooklyn Tangle Free Earphones with In-line Mic and One Button Control
Novero Brooklyn Tangle Free Earphones with In-line Mic and One Button Control

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Hard to beat at this price, 15 Feb. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
After years of buying relatively expensive ($60-$100) earbuds from the likes of Etymotic, Shure and A-Jays, all of which ended up malfunctioning one way or another within a year or two, I finally got fed up with their lack of value for money and decided to try these.

I wanted in-ear buds, a no-tangle cable, and an inline mic and remote, and these ticked all of those boxes. On top of that they cost less than EUR20 including delivery to Ireland, and reviews seemed to be fairly positive, so it seemed like a no-brainer.

So what are they like?

Well, if you're used to more expensive buds, there's no denying they feel a bit cheap when you're getting them out the box. The no-tangle cable is a bit plasticky and not as wide as others I've had, so it remains to be seen how no-tangle it really is. The junction between cable and jack doesn't fill me with confidence either, but then again, I've had loose connections there with far more expensive sets than these. The button on the in-line remote feels a bit cheap and 'clicky' too. The buds themselves though are as comfortable in my ear as any others I've had, and unusually, the pre-fitted sleeves (it comes with three different sizes) were actually the right size for me.

Most importantly, the sound really isn't bad at all. Really quite good, even. Yes, the bass could be a mite punchier, and the high end is a little bit thin, but they're not a million miles away (and certainly not four or five times the price away) from the trendier big name brands I've used in recent years.

The remote and mic both work fine on my Android phone and my Mac laptop, and as an added bonus, the sound quality on the mic is surprisingly good, at least on Skype and some other quick recording tests I did.

What's not to like? Only that I don't know how long they'll last, but at EUR20, I'm much less inclined to care. I'd really rather the cable wasn't bright red, though.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Apr 16, 2013 11:48 PM BST


No Title Available

4.0 out of 5 stars Very decent stylus, 29 Dec. 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Hard to rate as it's the only iPad stylus I've tried, but works well enough. Not really any more precise than using your finger, which is a limitation of the iPad rather than the stylus, but feels a bit more natural I guess. Quality seems decent and the company are a pleasure to deal with.


Wild Republic Birds 13-16cm Robin with Real Bird Calls Plush
Wild Republic Birds 13-16cm Robin with Real Bird Calls Plush
Price: £7.25

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Perfect stocking filler, 29 Dec. 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
We already have a few others of the birds in the series so knew what to expect… perfect stocking filler for the twitcher in the family!


Wireless ForceFeedBack Racing Wheel (Xbox 360)
Wireless ForceFeedBack Racing Wheel (Xbox 360)

2.0 out of 5 stars I really wanted to like this wheel, but..., 15 Nov. 2012
= Fun:4.0 out of 5 stars 
Despite the many negative reviews of this wheel, there are plenty of positive ones around too. So slightly against my better judgement and hoping for the best, I went ahead and bought one. Initial impressions were good; the wheel is impressively sturdy, though sadly the pedals are rather plasticky. But it worked very well.

For about four weeks.

After that, the wheel started jumping and shaking randomly and uncontrollably when it was centred, which is one of several failure modes that other users have reported on internet forums and elsewhere. The power adapter also made a a worryingly-loud buzzing from the day I got it. I didn't hang around to see how bad it would get, or if a replacement unit would fare any better... I just got a refund while I still could, and have bitten the bullet and ordered the Fanatec CSR Value Pack instead.

Pros: It's the cheapest force feedback wheel (currently) available for the Xbox (you'll pay at least £50 more for the cheapest Fanatec wheel+pedal set, plus hefty P&P if you don't live in Germany); the wheel feels great in your hands; the metal paddle shifters feel very positive too; the pedals are inverted, which often costs extra even on more expensive kit; it has 'flap' attachments that make it very comfortable to use in your lap, even though 'real sim racers' will scoff at you for not mounting it (which you can also do, but I can't comment on how well that works).

Cons: It really is too expensive; the plasticky pedals offer too little resistance and creak worryingly every time you depress them (I wouldn't have been at all surprised to see stress cracks appear after a while); the stick shifter is gimmicky and pretty useless. But most importantly, experience and other reviews suggest that the wheel is very likely to malfunction or fail completely after a few months at most, which is a great shame but unacceptable for anything that costs this much money.


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