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Reviews Written by
C. M. Cotton "Chris Cotton" (Europe and USA)
(TOP 100 REVIEWER)    (VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   

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Auna DTA90BT Bluetooth Car Radio 18 cm / 7 Inch Display CD / DVD Player Black
Auna DTA90BT Bluetooth Car Radio 18 cm / 7 Inch Display CD / DVD Player Black
Offered by Hifi-Tower Ltd.
Price: £404.90

5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic, 15 April 2014
I was given this item by HiFi Tower to review and keep in return for an honest review.

I have owned a number of high end cars marques and have usually come with amazing sound systems already built in. Only once have I installed an after market car music system and then I bought a superb Kenwood system. Currently I am in the process of buying a LHD car for occasional use in mainland Europe. As such it came with an inferior sound system. This item has been installed to replace the standard system.

It comes with all the necessary manuals and connection leads. I am not a mechanical whizz, but I found this player very easy to install. It is what I would call standard size and fitted into a space 56mm by 186mm. The design is sleek looking and it appears to be a fantastic piece of kit.

The screen slides out from the top of the machine and measures 113mm by 173mm, which is a full 7 inch screen. The unit plays DVD's if you wish and all DVD navigation, such as pause and fast forward is via the touchscreen. The touchscreen is also used to set up the unit and fine tune what it can do. The menu's are simple to follow and very intuitive. The player can play a variety of formats, CD, CD R, CD RW, MP3 and WMA. The unit also has an SD card slot and a USB slot, which allows the owner to play MP3's and MPEG 4's, which adds to the functionality of the unit. Another interesting use for the screen can be as a reversing camera screen, if you install a rear view camera. The unit is also has Buletooth connectivity and so it can connect into your phone and be used as a sound system and for answering the telephone whilst driving. The sound the system produces is excellent and all the phone calls I have had whilst using the car, have come across as very clear. There are also AV inputs on the front of the machine, which allows for additional audio visual components to be added. Quite simply, I have never seen a more expandable sound system/dvd player. As there are so many slots/inputs built into the device, what it can do is almost endless. Away from the modern functionality it also has a splendid FM/AM RDS 30 pre set radio, which is very easy to automatically programme.

So functionality is super, but what about the important things such as sound and security? It gives off 4 x 45W output which is plenty loud for a normal car. The actual sound can be adapted to personal preference by use of the menu screens. Whilst sound is a very subjective matter and depends upon the quality of the speakers used, I find the sound given off by this player as very good. The security of the unit is enhanced by a detachable front, which prevents it being stolen. It comes with a remote control which also aids the ease of use, if you don't want to use the touchscreen.

This unit is simply amazing. This review will be added to as I play with it and work out what else it can do. It appears to be made from top quality materials and you also get the reassurance of a 30 day money back guarantee from Hi Fi Tower, if it does not meet your expectations.

I cannot recommend this item enough.


Smart Weigh Digital Pro Pocket Scale with Back-lit LCD Display, Hold Feature and 2000 x 0.1g Capacity
Smart Weigh Digital Pro Pocket Scale with Back-lit LCD Display, Hold Feature and 2000 x 0.1g Capacity
Offered by Five Star
Price: £22.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic Quality for the Price, 12 April 2014
I was asked to test and review this product by Smart Weigh. On opening the box I looked at the scales and I was quite amazed at how good these scales look. They are a sleek type of brushed aluminium effect. It comes with an instruction book and the required batteries. The scales are so small they easily fit in a coat pocket, which means they are fully portable. The unit comes with the required batteries and they were very easy to calibrate. I found this product is highly accurate and can weigh anything from 1g to 2000g. The display is a blue back lit LCD panel which can be read easily in low light. The display can be adjusted to read in metric or imperial weights. I am very happy with the functionality of this product, as it does everything it is supposed to, with great accuracy, especially when considering its small size..

This is a small light weight scale, which can be easily packed away and is ideal for travelling with. It appears to be of very high quality and offers amazing value for money. I can happily recommend this product as it offers good value for money.

Recommended.


Smart Weigh Digital Kitchen Scale and Timer - Food Scale - Slim Stainless Steel Design - High Accuracy - LCD Backlight
Smart Weigh Digital Kitchen Scale and Timer - Food Scale - Slim Stainless Steel Design - High Accuracy - LCD Backlight
Offered by Five Star
Price: £44.95

5.0 out of 5 stars Great Scales, 12 April 2014
I was asked to test and review this product by Smart Weigh. On opening the box I looked at the scales and I was quite amazed at how good these scales look. They are a sleek type of brushed aluminium effect, which is actually plastic. It comes with an instruction book and the required batteries. At the top of the scales there is a hook, so you can hang them on a wall if required. The unit comes with the required batteries and they were very easy to calibrate. I found this product is highly accurate and can weigh anything from 1g to 5000g. The display is a blue back lit LCD panel which can be read easily in low light. The display can be adjusted to read in metric or imperial weights. I am very happy with the functionality of this product, as it does everything it is supposed to, with great accuracy, especially when considering its small size..

This is a small light weight scale, which can be easily packed away, ideal for travelling with. It appears to be of very high quality and offers amazing value for money. I can happily recommend this product as it offers good value for money.

Recommended.


Tacwise 1153 Combi Cable Stapler
Tacwise 1153 Combi Cable Stapler
Price: £14.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Great Stapler, 2 April 2014
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
This stapler is of very high quality, is ultra slim and is designed for use when installing telecommunication wires, alarm, coaxial, satellite, CAT5 & CAT6 and two core electric cable in low voltage applications. It is made from steel and aluminium and uses CT45 and CT60 staples without the need for adjustment. The staple chamber is made from cast aluminium and it has a small window at each side of the chamber so you can see how many staples are left. The design is ergonomic and allows ease of use, without your hand or arm getting tired.

Overall this is a quality product at a very low price. I am happy to highly recommend this product.


Tacwise Z1-140 Staple Gun. Staple Gun Tacker
Tacwise Z1-140 Staple Gun. Staple Gun Tacker
Price: £9.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastiic, 2 April 2014
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
This is a heavy duty stapler, designed for DIY/upholstery type of jobs. It is made from high quality materials and uses the heavy duty staples (if supplied by Tacwise Ref 140). The staple chamber is made from cast aluminium and it has a small window at each side of the chamber so you can see how many staples are left. The design is ergonomic and allows ease of use, without your hand or arm getting tired.

Overall this is a quality product at a very low price. I am happy to highly recommend this product.


Tefal 3-Piece Ingenio Induction Trial Offer
Tefal 3-Piece Ingenio Induction Trial Offer
Price: £48.00

5.0 out of 5 stars Nothing Really New, 2 April 2014
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I am a bit of a kitchen utensil freak, I like nice quality shun knives, copper bottom pans and stylish cutlery. I usually buy top end items because I believe they last longer and are therefore more cost effective. When buying pans in the past I have never been attracted to the Tefal brand. Whilst these pans are not top top quality in terms of non stick coating, I believe the coating will wear through quite quickly, they are nevertheless excellent pans for the price. Supposedly the unique selling point of these pans is that they can be used on the hob, oven and then be used for serving at the table, due to the detachable handle. The idea of this is not new. I can remember my Grandmother having a set similar to these in the 1970's and in that time they were made by Prestige. These pans are similar and I really like the idea. They are perfect for searing meat and then adding the sauce and cooking it in the oven.

Overall, whilst the idea of a detachable handle is not new, this set is very nice for the price and I can highly recommend them.


Tefal 3-Piece Ingenio Enamel Trial Offer
Tefal 3-Piece Ingenio Enamel Trial Offer
Price: £40.00

5.0 out of 5 stars Nothing Really New, 2 April 2014
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I am a bit of a kitchen utensil freak, I like nice quality shun knives, copper bottom pans and stylish cutlery. I usually buy top end items because I believe they last longer and are therefore more cost effective. When buying pans in the past I have never been attracted to the Tefal brand. Whilst these pans are not top top quality in terms of non stick coating, I believe the coating will wear through quite quickly, they are nevertheless excellent pans for the price. Supposedly the unique selling point of these pans is that they can be used on the hob, oven and then be used for serving at the table, due to the detachable handle. The idea of this is not new. I can remember my Grandmother having a set similar to these in the 1970's and in that time they were made by Prestige. These pans are similar and I really like the idea. They are perfect for searing meat and then adding the sauce and cooking it in the oven.

Overall, whilst the idea of a detachable handle is not new, this set is very nice for the price and I can highly recommend them.


Child's Pose [DVD]
Child's Pose [DVD]
Dvd ~ Luminita Gheorghiu
Price: £13.44

4.0 out of 5 stars Nice But............, 14 Mar 2014
This review is from: Child's Pose [DVD] (DVD)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I adore foreign films and such I am always on the look out for new DVD's that are available with English subtitles. This film won a number of International Awards and so when it became available on the Vine list I thought I would order it.

The plot is relatively simple, a rich mother does everything she can to protect her son and keep him out of jail, by using her money and influence. What I liked about this film is how true the portrayal is of the wealthy and influential people I have met in the early 1990's Eastern Europe, where what you know pales into insignificance compared to who you know and how much money you have to influence those people. It is a fascinating insight into how post Ceausescu Romania operated/operates. The great difficulty I had with many parts of the film is that it is dialogue rich and the subtitles go at quite a pace. On many occasions I was not fast enough to read all the speech.

This is a nice portrayal of 1990's Romania and how its society operated. The acting is well done and the cinematography is excellent. I like the film, I just wish the subtitles could have been seen a bit longer in certain parts of the film.

Recommended.


Tacwise HD-73 73/12mm Heavy Duty Plier Bundle Staples (5 Boxes of 5000)
Tacwise HD-73 73/12mm Heavy Duty Plier Bundle Staples (5 Boxes of 5000)
Price: £48.95

5.0 out of 5 stars Great Product, 8 Mar 2014
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I have now reviewed a number of staplers for the Vine programme. This stapler must be the best one I have tried, although it is also the most expensive.

It is made from very high quality metal and is of a very sturdy construction. The staples can be loaded with ease and are also of a very high quality. I have stapled so far 67 pages together with complete ease and it feels as if it could do more. Although I have not tried it on thicker material, I think it would also be perfect to use on things like cardboard. It comes with two interchangeable anvils, one for stapling and one for removing staples. The pack also comes with 5000 staples, which actually saves you money, if you were to buy the stapler and staples separately.

Overall I can highly recommend this product as a great heavy duty stapler, ideal for all sorts of jobs.


QuickBooks Pro 2014 + Enhanced Payroll 2014 Bundle - 1 Year Subscription - 1 User (PC)
QuickBooks Pro 2014 + Enhanced Payroll 2014 Bundle - 1 Year Subscription - 1 User (PC)
Price: £165.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Great Software, 2 Mar 2014
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I now run several businesses in the UK. I use an accountant I have known for many years and have always been happy with their service. I have had very little need for such software, especially given the price of accounting software packages. I am not a computer whiz and sometimes find complicated Microsoft software packages difficult to use.

I reviewed Quickbooks Premier 2012 and 2013 previously and my review is virtually identical to that one. I received this software free of charge via the Amazon Vine programme. In truth I would not have bought such software, given my relationship with my accountant. I therefore used this opportunity to try the software without any risk or guilt. As this is the second tine of using I am getting used to how the programme works and the ultimate ease of use.

It was simplicity itself to install. The software gives you a comprehensive and easy to use accounting package. Whilst my area of business pertains to the service sector and does require the holding of stock, the software can easily handle business situations where stock control is necessary. It can easily track sales, expenses and profits and can create professional looking invoices using PDF's for emails. It can automatically calculate VAT and creates an E file so you can send it directly to HMRC. It works with all Office programmes so there is great compatibility, so allowing greater ease of use. It also allows you to create budgets and cash flow projections. In short this software can handle virtually anything a small to medium sized business can throw at it. It also includes payroll software free for 12 months, which allows you to calculate wages, NI, Tax for your employees.

Whilst I am a stick in the mud and like the reassurance that my accountant brings, this software is the next best thing. It is easy to use and does virtually everything you will require. A great product at a great price, compared to other accounting software packages.


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