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Esteban (South East, UK)

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Jawbone UP2 Sleep and Activity Tracker - Black Diamond
Jawbone UP2 Sleep and Activity Tracker - Black Diamond
Price: £89.95

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Massively improved from UP, a new design with UP24 inside, 21 Jun. 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Jawbone have been at the forefront of the recent trend of sleep and activity tracking to help improve health, with the stylish and functional UP being a fashion accessory as well as being useful. Unlike cheaper competitors, like Fitbit, Jawbone have kept style at the heart of the design of their items, moving on from UP to UP24, which added Bluetooth and a longer battery life - however, UP2 is the first drastic redesign of the core Jawbone product.

Thin and sleek, with a diamond pattern rather than 3D texture (as on UP and UP24), the way this attaches to your wrist is also greatly different - rather than a slight twist and move bracelet opening, this has a proper 'strap' feature. Having known someone who bent the UP too far and broke it, this is a greatly improved feature, if losing a little bit of the sleekness of the original UP and UP24.

The Jawbone app is ultimately the massive selling point of choosing them as a brand over the others. It's utterly flawless, with calorie tracking, food entry, links to My Fitness Pal and Apple Health amongst others, and allows you to administer the band through the app with ease. This is not the cheapest activity tracker on the market, but Jawbone proves they are still amongst the best - however, I personally still love the style of the UP24, which is now heavily reduced, so this might not be the first purchase I'd make if looking for an entry level model for the market.


Philips DVT2700 Voice Tracer Digital Recorder with Speech Recognition Software and 2 Microphone Stereo Recording
Philips DVT2700 Voice Tracer Digital Recorder with Speech Recognition Software and 2 Microphone Stereo Recording
Price: £64.01

4.0 out of 5 stars Great portable recorder, but lacking state-of-the-art features, 22 May 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
The Philips DVT2700 is a great looking little digital recorder with Dragon software to convert speech-to-text. The software works great, regardless of the machine it comes with, and is great for converting dictation to written text, so this is a fantastic addition with the DVT2700, especially as some of the better models make you buy this software separately.

The recorder is gorgeous, with full-colour display and easy-to-use buttons, perfect for recording video voice-overs, capturing audio for journalists, writing essays, etc. verbally. The sound quality is great, with very effective background noise reduction - the 'voice tracing' capability - and it can record in lossless and lossy (compressed MP3) formats, so you can have a CD quality file if you need it.

Sadly, it's not rechargeable, requiring AA batteries rather than coming with an included Li-On battery, and there are quite a few features that the other models have, such as motion sensor, which are rapidly becoming standard, but at around £60 this is a great value device.


Olay Regenerist Luminous Anti-Dark Circle Correcting Eye Treatment Moisturiser 15 ml
Olay Regenerist Luminous Anti-Dark Circle Correcting Eye Treatment Moisturiser 15 ml
Price: £18.40

3.0 out of 5 stars Great bottle, not convinced that the product is worthwhile though..., 8 April 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I suffer from quite obvious under eye 'black bags', regardless of things like the amount of sleep I have had, so was quite interested to test this new product from Olay, which claims to reduce the dark circles and moisturise the area, inspired by 'pearl science'.

I have now been using the product twice a day for three weeks and can't say I have noticed any majorly obvious improvements to the dark circles. The area does feel more moisturised, which is a positive, but I can't say this product is worth the money.

However, the bottle is amazing - a small, couple of inches canister, with the cream displayed in a twisty spiral - it looks like a work of art!


Panasonic ALL8 Wireless Speaker System (Black)
Panasonic ALL8 Wireless Speaker System (Black)
Price: £292.99

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Utterly incredible sound, but not that easy to set up..., 26 Mar. 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
At around £300, I was expecting a luxuriously-packed product, similar to something from Apple or Beats by Dre, but Panasonic have forsaken effort in packaging for a simple cardboard box with horrible white snow-foam polystyrene padding. So far, so unimpressed. The box is incredibly heavy, heavier than the Beats by Dre Pill XL, which surprised me, until I got the device out of the box.

This is a true monster of a wireless speaker. It's not vastly big and is definitely shelf-sized, but the weight packs a punch, so I was excited to hear just what it could produce sound-wise. It doesn't look the nicest in terms of design, it's very simple as the images show, with a metallic-grey plastic coating, but I find it looks nicer than similar products by Bose, for example.

Unfortunately, unlike the Beats Pill, this is not Bluetooth or NFC enabled, so you do have to go through a set-up process, which has been detailed by many other users on this page. Depending on your patience and technical ability, it seems you will either have a bad-to-middling experience setting up the wireless connection for the speaker. I personally downloaded the app to my iPhone 6 Plus and followed the process. Like the Chromecast, you connect to the wireless network that is given out by the device and then follow the instructions and there's no avoiding this. You then have to disconnect and return back to your home network to get the app to work, before you can stream music to it.

I tried streaming music directly from my iPhone and this is really where the device comes into its own. The sound is incredible; crisp, clear, just the right amount of bass. It was mindblowing from such a tiny, tiny device. I seriously couldn't believe it.

If this device was easier to set up and looked a bit nicer in design, this would be a five star device. As it is, it will have to settle for a four.


Scholl Velvet Smooth Diamond Pedi Extra Coarse Hard Skin Remover Refills - Pack of 2
Scholl Velvet Smooth Diamond Pedi Extra Coarse Hard Skin Remover Refills - Pack of 2
Price: £10.10

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great refills for a great product!, 23 Mar. 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
School are the market leaders in foot care products and their Smooth Diamond express pedi is the latest in their line of home pedicure equipment, to ensure you have the smoothest, softest feet possible.

Anyone who has one of the devices (http://www.amazon.co.uk/Scholl-Velvet-Smooth-Diamond-Remover/dp/B00R6AE030/ref=pd_sim_beauty_1?ie=UTF8&refRID=0J4P9ZBV6R82R4VCCKJ6) will know that with constant use, over time they can lose some of their definition and effectivity. These replacements provide the solution, extending the lifespan of your pedi - I'd reckon at constant use (a few times a week), you can get at least a month's wear out of each one, but with daily use this could potentially go down to about 2 weeks.

The Diamond smoothness is amazing, sanding down tough hard dead skin at rapid time and leaving behind a nice sparkly sheen, which I am very fond of - these are a must-have for any Scholl express pedi owner!


Belkin True Clear InvisiGlass Overlay Real Glass Screen Protector for iPhone 6 Plus
Belkin True Clear InvisiGlass Overlay Real Glass Screen Protector for iPhone 6 Plus
Price: £16.89

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Overpriced 'invisiglass' plastic; tempered glass would have been better, 16 Mar. 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Like most screen protectors for the iPhone 6 Plus, with its curved screen edges, the Belkin True Clear Invisiglass Overlay screen protector does not cover the full screen, only the flat parts you touch, meaning it, like most screen protectors, is more difficult to fit.

The trouble with this is that the Belkin screen protector has a lot of flex and give, and despite being glass, does not look like it could shatter. Just how much protection this would provide to your screen I am not sure, especially as it's so thin. I was expecting, as it has glass in the title, this to be tempered glass, much like the JETech® Premium Tempered Glass Screen Protector for Apple iPhone 6 Plus 5.5" (http://www.amazon.co.uk/JETech®-Premium-Tempered-Screen-Protector/dp/B00N0Z89UU/), which at around a fiver is far, far cheaper than this, which is over three times the price.

If you're concerned about thickness, as the tempered glass screen protectors are around .5mm, this is a good way to go at .2mm, and you really can hardly tell it's been applied if you get it right, but I genuinely think this is sadly extremely overpriced and not worth the money.


MEMPHIS THE MUSICAL
MEMPHIS THE MUSICAL
Price: £9.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A must-have for fans of musicals (and Beverley Knight!), 8 Mar. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: MEMPHIS THE MUSICAL (Audio CD)
If there's one West End musical you should see in 2015, it is most definitely Memphis: The Musical.

Already a huge Tony-award winning show over on Broadway with a follow-up US tour, the UK premiere took place in late 2014, casting Beverley Knight as the lead female, Felicia Farrell, and the gorgeous Killian Donnelly as Huey Calhoun - 'Hockadoo!' Based loosely on a true story, the songs move the story along effortlessly and this is your chance to take home and enjoy the London cast performances forever.

Beverley Knight - as I hope everyone knows - is one of the UK's best female vocalists ever. Having taken on the West End as Rachel Marron in The Bodyguard in late 2013/2014, singing songs made famous by the inimitable Whitney Houston, she showcased just how strong a vocalist she was, and these recordings just prove it even further. Her stand-out, the Motown-esque Someday, is sublime, as is her powerful run on Underground, whilst Killian Donnelly stands out on The Music of My Soul and Memphis Lives In Me.

Listening to the soundtrack makes me want to see the musical again!


Igenix IG4350 Traditional Corded Kettle 2,200 W - 3.5 L, Stainless Steel
Igenix IG4350 Traditional Corded Kettle 2,200 W - 3.5 L, Stainless Steel
Price: £28.97

5.0 out of 5 stars Bigger than you think - ideal for making a lot of tea!, 8 Mar. 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
This Igenix stainless steel kettle is a large construction - much, much larger than your standard domestic kettle which holds around 1.7 litres. It looks great and is easy to hold, with your standard kettle features - it turns itself off when it has done and stops itself from boiling dry.

Despite it holding a lot of water, the entire thing can boil in just about 9 minutes, which I thought was quite fast - I was expecting it to take a lot longer - and you can boil as little as 1.5litres in the kettle if you don't need to boil the entire thing, which was much quicker, about 4minutes in total. It has plastic feet to hold it to your kitchen worktop, and has a removable cable - it doesn't have a fancy base like most modern kettles, you have to plug in directly to the kettle to get it going.

The design is retro but with a modern feel; I personally think it looks great in comparison to some of the plastic kettles, etc. on the market. You will need to descale, as the element is exposed inside the kettle, presumably to try and ensure it boils as quickly as possible. I really like this, and at under £30 I think it's great value for money for those who want a larger kettle - it's ideal for an office or for big families!


NETGEAR D6100-100UKS AC1200 Dual Band Wireless ADSL2+ Modem Router for Phone Line Connections
NETGEAR D6100-100UKS AC1200 Dual Band Wireless ADSL2+ Modem Router for Phone Line Connections
Price: £78.73

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great value, reliable router, 25 Feb. 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
The Netgear D6100 AC1200 is a mid-to-high range wireless router for standard phone line connections to the internet (ADSL and not cable) priced at around £80; a big jump from the £25-£35 of most standard phone line routers. One of the premium features of the router is the dual band signal, taking your internet connection and effectively splitting it in how it emits the signal - in simple terms, there are two options for you to connect devices to, both at different frequencies (2.4GHz and 5GHz).

At any one point, I have two iPads, a Macbook Pro, two iPhones, an iMac, Sky+ box and Kindle connected to the wireless internet in the house; and with visitors, that can jump to double. The wireless signal remains strong despite all of these connections and seems to share the internet speed fairly and evenly. There are no obvious antennas on the device which is quite a rarity I think for wireless routers of this size, however, signal strength remains strong all over the house from downstairs in the living room to the bedrooms and there's even some strength in the garden, which I have never had with any other router before.

I haven't used some of the additional features, I've literally just used this as a plug and play router, but overall I totally recommend this router compared to any I've used before. Utterly recommended for a fast, reliable internet connection.


SMS Audio Bio Sport Earbud with Heart Monitor - Yellow
SMS Audio Bio Sport Earbud with Heart Monitor - Yellow
Price: £129.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Quite expensive but comfortable for regular exercise, 14 Feb. 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
The SMS Audio Bio Sport Earbuds are unique in that they have a heart monitor, 'charged' by your 3.5mm jack, something your everyday earphones don't have, which means you can see how effective your exercise - I've used it mainly for running - has been. At the high price point, there is an expectation that these will be a good build quality, be easy to use, deliver crisp sound replication whilst exercising, stay comfortable and in place and give accurate heart monitoring - looking stylish is an added bonus, which the headphones do, even in what might appear a garish yellow on screen!

Unlike standard in-ear earphones, the shape of the buds seems more ergonomically suited to sit 'in but not inside' actual human ears - there are three various sizes to suit most standard ears (I went for the middle-sized ones, which seem to work effectively) - and these are not noise cancelling, or trying to be, like those horrible earbuds that sit so far inside the ear canal you feel like you are constantly in a tunnel. As pictured, there are little hooks attached to the earbuds - these are actually stretchy rubber loops that hook onto your ear to help hold them in place, a genius invention when compared to the over-ear plastic hooks some cheaper earphones have. As with many of the Beats by Dre. earphones, the cable is a flat tangle-free version, rather than the round ones found on other brands. There isn't an audio controller on them, however, so you need to set the volume before you go for a run.

RunKeeper is the app that is recommended by SMS Audio, so I installed this on my iPhone before going for the first run - it even tracks where you have run and shows you the exact route you ran which is quite cool - and I think the heart monitoring seemed to work well once I'd set it up. I've tried a few times since and it definitely seems to be useful information to have to see how effective your run was! However, this does strike me as a bit of a novelty, which is why I've taken a star off overall - manufacturing a cheaper version without the heart monitoring would be a five star product for me, as I don't feel the extra price is justified for this feature.

I knew that sound quality would be incomparable to noise-cancelling in-ear buds, so please aware if you do prefer that, these will not be the same in terms of sound. I can't stand the ones that clog my entire ear canal, so I was so pleased these don't, and I think the sound is perfectly serviceable - treble is strong, clear, crisp and there's great clarity. Bass reproduction is a little weaker, but totally forgivable overall.

Overall, the SMS Audio Earbuds are very comfortable to use, are stylish and nice to use, even with the flaws mentioned. If these came down in price by £50, I'd say they were good value. As it is, they are quite overpriced for what I'd consider a novelty feature, but still one of the most comfortable earbuds if you don't like in-ear-canal versions.


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