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Rob (London)

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Lays Stax Original (Pack of 17)
Lays Stax Original (Pack of 17)

5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent USB Plug Adapter, 5 Mar. 2010
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I bought this so I could charge my ipod touch when I was in the Canaries on holiday (using a Euro socket adapter) but I am using it all the time for charging all my appliances which come with measley USB cables instead of proper 3 point plugs, because it works so efficently. Charges my ipod very quickly. It is very light-weight so great for packing on holiday, but seems strong enough and actually looks quite smart in its pure white Apple-friendly colour! Only costs a couple of pounds so I would have no hesitation recommending it as the USB charger to buy.

Apple iPod touch 8GB (Model A1288 launched Sept 2008)
Apple iPod touch 8GB (Model A1288 launched Sept 2008)

12 of 15 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Incomplete, 18 Feb. 2010
Like the iphone before it, the ipod touch is missing some fairly obvious features. The iphone missed stereo sound, a radio, ability to transfer photos and music to/from it by bluetooth, multi-tasking and flexibility to use other software/formats (notably Windows Media Player) to transfer music/video to it, and ability to be a standalone product not requiring a computer; and in addition to these drawbacks the ipod touch misses out on a camera, GPS and microphone. I wouldn't expect the touch to include telephone capabilities.

As you have to have a computer in addition to the ipod touch in order for it to work, it is particularly unfortuntate that Apple also stipulate that you must use their memory hungry, slow, inflexible and cumbersome itunes software to transfer your music, videos and photos to your ipod touch.

Given these considerable shortcomings, in use the ipod touch remains a lovely product to use. The wifi (which I mainly purchased it for) works like a dream, very fast and the interface is so fluid and easy to use, with lovely little helpful aids like automatic spell correction, a screen large enough to view and read full-size web pages without great difficulty. Thousands of applications are available for the ipod touch (as for the iphone) and many are free of charge.

The music capabilities of the ipod touch are surprisingly unexceptional given that this is its main reason for being, certainly inferior to nokia's more flexible version on their phones.

It is a shame that GPS wasn't included on the iphone touch, so you can only use the link to Google maps in a wifi zone, so not when you are out and about. This is typical of the mean-spiritied approach Apple adopt with the product, to encourage users to buy their far more expensive iphone instead, as that includes GPS.

So is it worth buying? Overall, yes I think it is, especially the cheaper 8GB version. The ipod touch is a pleasure to use, but it is not a pleasure to connect it up to a computer (as you must) for transfering new songs/video/apps to it using the rotten itunes software and the necessity for all material transferred to ipod touch being in Apple's own format, not Windows Media Player/standard MP3/MP4 format generally available elsewhere.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: May 30, 2010 11:52 AM BST

Absolute Greatest
Absolute Greatest
Offered by DVD Overstocks
Price: £14.23

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb Queen Compilation, 19 Nov. 2009
This review is from: Absolute Greatest (Audio CD)
Although I already have the three Greatest Hits compilations, I love the idea of a single CD spanning Queen's entire career, from Seven Seas of Rye to These Are The Days Of Our Lives. I am impressed by the choices made here, being a little nervous that delicate and moving songs like These Are The Days Of Our Lives would be missed out, but instead they have missed out the hits I like least, Fat Bottom Girls, Bicycle Race, Good Old Fashioned Lover Boy, Tie Your Mother Down. The exclusion of Innuendo is the only jarring note, and possibly Now I'm Here. However, to include a long song such as Innuendo would mean cutting two of the other songs included and I'm glad that didn't happen because I think I prefer all the songs included to Innuendo. All in 2009 digital restored versions, superb. I would recommend this to anyone who enjoys listening to Queen.

Celebration (2 CD)
Celebration (2 CD)
Offered by 247dvd
Price: £7.48

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent compilation from Madonna, 5 Oct. 2009
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Celebration (2 CD) (Audio CD)
I love Madonna's music and this is a fantastic double CD of highlights from her long career. Her previous compilations have been in broadly chronological order, but I enjoy the apparently haphazard order of songs on Celebration, as each song comes on unexpectedly and has the element of surprise. Of course, its not a haphazard order at all, Madonna has given the order alot of thought as she does with everything in her life and career. She is a true artist and goes with her gut instinct. I really enjoy her two new songs, Revolver and Celebration; they are fresh and unlike her other work; just as Justify My Love and Rescue Me were on The Immaculate Collection.

There are some complaints about the songs missed out on this collection, but Madonna has had too many hits to fit onto a double CD and commercial considerations might put a triple CD collection at a time of recession out of the pockets of many people. I think the choices here are good. I would personally have preferred True Blue, Give It To Me and This Used To Be My Playground to Everybody, Burning Up and Cherish but I can manage without them. I know that this compilation will be on my CD player at home and in my car for years to come. Thank you Madonna.

Celebration [DVD] [2009] [NTSC]
Celebration [DVD] [2009] [NTSC]
Dvd ~ Madonna
Price: £19.99

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars What we've all been waiting for!, 5 Oct. 2009
An excellent and comprehensive collection of Madonna's videos, far more satisfactory than the Immaculate Collection video I had before. Although the first 5 videos have a grainy quality the colours are stronger than before, and the sound quality on my Sony 40inch TV is fantastic, loud and powerful. I have read some complaints on here that the videos aren't fully widescreen and the quality is poor, but they are all widescreen on my TV and apart from the older videos mentioned above, and I Want You, they all look great. There are a few hits missing, such as This Used To Be My Playground, and I would have preferred the uncensored Justify My Love (black bars across the dominatrix's breasts) and Erotica (bars across Madonna in a nude scene), but I can live with these ommissions. Don't hesitate ... treat yourself!

Techfocus TomTom ONE v2 / v3 / XL Europe/GB (Regional) Mains Travel Charger
Techfocus TomTom ONE v2 / v3 / XL Europe/GB (Regional) Mains Travel Charger
Offered by Electro World
Price: £2.42

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Works for Garmin Nuvi 250 too, 11 Nov. 2008
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This excellent value product works for charging both my TomTom and Garmin sat navs. The Garmin chargers seem to be especially expensive so this is a real find. It doesn't come with a European or American adaptor so you would need to get these separately (I already have them). It arrived the day after I ordered it.

Garmin Nuvi 250 Satellite Navigation System with Full EU Mapping
Garmin Nuvi 250 Satellite Navigation System with Full EU Mapping

6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Crude Sat Nav Covers Eastern and Western Europe, 30 Sept. 2008
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I already have the TomTom One GB 3rd ed sat nav, which i have been very pleased with. Its reliable, up-to-date and re-assuringly has never failed me. I decided to buy another for European maps, and the Garmin 250 appeared to be a good choice. Whilst cheaper than the TomTom, it coverage extended from GB to both Western and Eastern Europe. The other good points are that it is slimmer than the TomTom, so easier to put in my pocket; the windscreen holder is much more effective than TomToms, and the POIs are more meaningful.

However, in use the problems became quickly apparent. First, the manual it comes with is so lacking in detail even basic procedures are left to trial and error. This makes the unit hard to use initially.

The female voice sounds very tinny, unpleasant to the ear. The volume doesnt adjust to the road conditions, so tends to be either too loud or too quiet however you set it. I found the basic maps adequate though the map on the screen lags behind where you actually are on the road.

I tested the unit thoroughly on a long journey from London to North Devon and back. On the journey out, nearing my destination, it guided me down a steep one track back road which was positively dangerous. Fortunately i didnt meet anyone coming in the opposite direction, for that would have meant backing along the entire distance of the twisting lane. The friends i was staying with in Devon were astonished a sat nav would send anyone down such a route, as not only is it dangerous (all the locals avoid it) but far longer than by going on a proper A or B road.

However, as i discovered on the return journey, there may be a reason for this. To avoid going back the same way, my friend drove ahead and i followed in my car, ignoring the sat nav's directions. This was to follow the main route everyone uses to get to that particular town. On following a signpost directing me to the M5 where i wanted to go, i noticed that the sat nav looked as though i was driving through a field and then a river. I cant tell you how bizarre that felt!!

The road i was travelling on through the river was opened in early 2006. The Garmin maps on my device are labelled 2008, but clearly they date from sometime prior to early 2006 and have never been updated!! Apart from the deception involved, this hardly inspires confidence that the Garmin 250 is a reliable device I can trust to take me from A to B.

I checked the same route on my older TomTom, and sure enough, it has the details of the 2006 roads in place. I assume this is because of the online updating TomTom allows via mapshare, which is clearly more important than i had ever realised.

Overall then, three stars for the extensive coverage of Europe, the small size, the windscreen mounting, the low price, but really this crude, tinny device cannot be recommended. That said, I've decided to keep mine because it covers countries TomTom just has no maps at all for at present. No better example of getting what you pay for.

UPDATE ... the 2009 European maps are now available to download from the Garmin website. This is free for recent purchasers of the Garmin Nuvi 250, and I ran the update process. It took from 7pm until about 5am the following morning! I was hopeful that the updated maps would rectify at least some of the problems identified above in my earlier review, as I put these down to the outdated mapping. Disappointingly, the UK maps at least seem to be little updated. My updated Garmin 250 would still send me down the same dodgy steep lane in North Devon. It also doesn't recognize the street where a friend in Colchester lives, opened in 2006. If this seems a small complaint, the same road IS available on my year older TomTom device, and also on Google navteq maps, so what's going on? Garmin also use navteq maps.

On the plus side, my updated device seems to lock onto satellites faster than formerly, is less sluggish following my car on the road, and also works more effectively in pedestrian mode.

Love On Your Side: The Best Of The Thompson Twins
Love On Your Side: The Best Of The Thompson Twins
Price: £5.99

36 of 37 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great comprehensive collection, 25 July 2008
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This 2007 collection is probably the best of the many Thompson Twins compilations. Too many of the others seem to be reliant on alternative or remixed versions of their songs, and this one not only uses the original versions but also includes a very generous selection of Thompson Twins album tracks.

This is a double CD package, with a nice cardboard cover wrapping up the plastic case. Good sleeve notes. The first CD contains all the hit singles in their original form and length, together with a few album tracks. The second CD is a chronological sequence of album tracks.

Between the two CDs we are given two songs from "Set" an early Thompson Twins album; the entirety of "Quick Step and Side Kick" which was their first commercially successful album; the entirety of "Into the Gap" which was their most successful album both musically and commercially; all except tracks 8 & 9 of their good but less successful "Future Days" album, and all except tracks 2,7,8 & 9 of "Close to the Bone", effectively their swansong album.

This double CD is so low cost now (under £5 currently) that even if you're only looking for the hits, it makes an excellent value purchase. The risk of buying the deceptively titled "Greatest Hits" single CD is that the versions of songs on that album aren't the original hits but alternate or remixed versions. That's fine if that is what you are looking for, but this should be indicated in the title of the album.

However, many of the group's best songs weren't released as singles, so with this collection you get the best of the album tracks as well. For instance, every song on "In the Gap" was great, and you get all of those here in their original form with great sound clarity. So this album appeals to both the greatest hits fans and the more serious fans.

Many of these songs I haven't heard for 25 years and it was great to hear them again. They still sound as fresh and full of joy in 2008 as they did in the early 80s. The Thompson Twins were often quite quirky and cheeky in their lyrics and singing, a quality perhaps not evident from probably their best known single "Hold Me Now" which is nevertheless a great song. Other songs I love are "In the Name of Love", "Love on Your Side", "Sister of Mercy", "No Peace for the Wicked", "The Gap" and "King for a Day". The low point is probably their version of The Beatles "Revolution", but everything else in this collection is good or great.

Comment Comments (4) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Aug 15, 2013 6:52 AM BST

Bosch Rotak 40 Electric Rotary Lawn Mower
Bosch Rotak 40 Electric Rotary Lawn Mower

19 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Makes my rough uneven garden look like a luxury lawn!, 12 May 2008
I bought this at Homebase as it was a bit cheaper than amazon at the time (£111). I've been struggling with a Flymo Compact 330 for the last year, which became too heavy and unpleasant to use, even with the grassbox only half full - not helped by the fragile blade buckling over at both ends!This was because I have an uneven and rough garden of about 130 feet long, so I wanted something that could handle a big garden and yet be light and dare I say pleasant to use.

The Bosch Rotak 40 is a terrific machine, well worth the extra money you have to pay over the likes of the Flymo Compact 330 (which I notice is still rather scandalously on the market). For my first cut using the Rotak my lawn had grown quite long, with flowering dandelions and stinging nettles sprouting up in the grass, particular around the parameter fences which the Flymo wouldn't touch. Pleased to say the Rotak made short shrift of the mess before it, cutting it right back (on the next to lowest setting) in nice stripes! Unlike the Flymo I didn't have to go over my tracks again as it was so well cut at one go, saving huge amounts of time. The really impressive part for me is its capacity to cut grass right up to the fences, even great long grass with brambles growing in it. In half an hour it looked as though my garden had grown wider!

The only drawback is the slower than usual setting up of the grassbox, which i did in my living room as i had been warned of this. It comes in three sections which are all snapped together. The plastic is thin so I wanted to do this carefully, and it took a little longer than I hoped. Because it's not a hover mower, it is also less immediately easy to manouvre around the lawn, but I found I got used to the new way of mowing quickly. Highly recommended if you want a lightweight lawnmower which cuts efficiently and impresses the neighbours.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: May 18, 2008 10:09 AM BST

I Will Survive: the Best of Gloria Gaynor
I Will Survive: the Best of Gloria Gaynor
Price: £6.38

20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fabulous, 4 May 2008
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This is the Gloria Gaynor compilation to buy. It contains all her major hits in their original and in most cases full-length versions - I Will Survive, Never Can Say Goodbye, I Am What I Am - plus all her minor hits, such as Honey Bee, Let me know (I have The Right), How High the Moon, Casanova Brown, and All I Need Is your Sweet Lovin'.

Gloria's first album contained the first ever segued disco hit sequence, allowing for non-stop dancing in clubs - the tracks were Honey Bee, Never Can Say Goodbye and Reach Out I'll Be There. It took up the entirety of one side of the album, and is reproduced here in full length over tracks 2 to 4. This proved popular in discos all over the world, and was copied by subsequent Disco artists, but it was Gloria who did it first!

The lyrics of her best songs were empowering to those who felt oppressed in their lives and/or relationships, so Gloria naturally became a gay icon. She celebrated this in her explicity gay anthem, I Am What I Am, which was also one of her biggest hits. Whilst Gloria embraced God from the early 1980s onwards, she refused to castigate her gay fans when asked if her gay following caused her conflict, unlike Donna Summer was later alleged to have done.

Unfortunately Gloria's later career became somewhat over-shadowed by Donna Summer's career, but this set represents her very best work. Recommended.

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