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R. J. Battersby (Sussex, UK)

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EVODIGITALS 8GB Covert Digital Voice Recorder USB Memory Stick
EVODIGITALS 8GB Covert Digital Voice Recorder USB Memory Stick

5.0 out of 5 stars The VERY BEST dicrete Audio USB Recorder, 14 July 2017
In 2014 I bought a low-cost 4GB USB audio recorder. Despite hundreds of high STAR ratings, it lasted about 5-6 test recordings before NOTHING HAPPENED. The lights went out and it was a dud. I didn't claim a refund because I valued my time more than the low price I had paid.
So much for being lured by STARS to buy an impossibly cheap (and nasty) device.
And so I did some research and found the EVODIGTALS device.
GOOD POINTS
* Small and Portable
* FANTASTIC audio quality! From inside pockets or lying under a pad on a desk to listening to a big meeting around a large table it produced absolute clarity. And I have never been able to see the microphone!
* Red LED only illuminated for a few seconds to reassure the user of the start of a recording
* Discrete ON-OFF switch.
* LONG rechargeable battery life - well over 3 hours
* Records when loose or when plugged into a USB port for charging or transferring data.
* Comes complete with a date-setting program stored in its memory.
* Low cost - I bought mine for an even lower price from the Evodigitals shop
* Excellent personal service from the shop-owner
BAD POINTS
* The plastic loop for attaching to a key-ring link or neck-strap is very flimsy.

In 2017, my friend was so impressed that I gave it to her and bought another EVODIGITALS audio USB Stick recorder - this time of 8GB capacity. That is proving just as good as good as described above.

The most important Good Point is the way this tiny device captures high quality audio from near and far in a room.


Owfeel(TM) NA-771 Dual Band 144/430MHZ SMA Male walkie-talkie Radio Antenna
Owfeel(TM) NA-771 Dual Band 144/430MHZ SMA Male walkie-talkie Radio Antenna

1.0 out of 5 stars This is a FAKE Nagoya NA-771, 15 Jun. 2017
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This product arrives in plastic retail packaging stating that it is a Nagoya antenna. But despite the hologram, this antenna is a fake Nagoya NA-771 antenna according to Nagoya's own website page illustrating the differences between Genuine and FAKE antennas. Here's a summary of why my new antenna is a FAKE.

1. The Genuine Nagoya plastic packaging is Green; mine is ORANGE.
2. The Genuine Nagoya plastic packaging is smooth; mine is textured.
3. The Genuine Nagoya includes a loose 'spacer' (looks like a black washer) inside the packaging; mine does not.

You can find the Nagoya's Taiwanese website explaining these differences by Googling - NA-771 "How to identify the genuine and fake antenna" (the QUOTE MARKS are important).

Here's the genuine thing - Nagoya NA771 ANTENNA SMA for Yaesu 2R / 3R / 6R / 7R.

You can also find a number of Ham radio sites who have tested these fake Nagoya antennas against the genuine Nagoya antenna (and also the original radio antenna they are designed to replace). Not only is the FAKE antenna's performance vastly inferior to the genuine antenna (and often inferior to the original antenna too), their design can cause serious damage to a radio's electronics.

The seller doesn't actually say this is a NAGOYA NA-771 antenna so protects himself from flouting the Trades Description Act. And I am no radio expert but understand the basic technicalties. For this reason I have dumped my new 'NA-771' antenna in the rubbish bin.
Comment Comment | Permalink


BestDealUK 45x 25mm Glass Magnifying Magnifier Jeweler Eye Jewelry Loupe Loop Led Light by BestDealUK
BestDealUK 45x 25mm Glass Magnifying Magnifier Jeweler Eye Jewelry Loupe Loop Led Light by BestDealUK
Offered by ccshunli
Price: £1.25

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Excellent 3x Magnifier (+ LARGE helping of Exaggeration), 2 Mar. 2017
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Excellent build quality, function and value but why does this, and all manufacturers of similar products - insist on exaggerating their magnification? In this case by some 15 times. Imagine a car manufacturer claiming a fuel consumption of 750 mpg when the truth was nearer to 50 mpg.

Using a simple test of viewing the scale of a rule, I reckon this lightweight aluminium and plastic device actually magnifies by THREE TIMES. In other words, looking through the lense, a 1mm gap appears the same size as 3mm on the rule in the flesh. That is a 3x Magnification. Not the stupidly crazy 45x claimed. That would border on the need to buy a microscope! What planet are they from?

Actually, the magnifier itself states '40X - 25MM' (check the photos) but even this is an exaggeration of some 13 times.

But for typical hand-held usage, 3x is perfectly adequate. The dual LED illumination is spot on too. And it looks professional

It's good and it's Excellent Value.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Mar 15, 2017 5:15 PM GMT


RJ11 Socket Loud Telephone Ring Speaker Ringtone Amplifier
RJ11 Socket Loud Telephone Ring Speaker Ringtone Amplifier
Offered by Ascot City
Price: £2.56

5.0 out of 5 stars NO MORE EXCUSES FOR STONE DEAF RELATIVES, 2 Mar. 2017
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
£2.56 ? How do they do this?

Less than 2 days from order (Monday) to receipt in my hand (Wednesday). So 5 Stars for delivery.

No instructions but the device is simple and has just two unmarked RJ11 sockets. RJ11 are the square plastic plugs that are used to plug a phone cable into the base unit of a remote home telephone or straight into a fixed telephone.. NOTE: RJ11 is NOT the larger rectangular section BT plugs used to plug a telephone into a BT wall-socket.

This device is designed to be inserted in the telephone cable leading into the telephone (or base unit). For this you will need to buy a short (or longer) cable having an RJ11 plug on BOTH ENDS. THIS CABLE IS NOT SUPPLIED but can be bought cheaply here: kenable ADSL Broadband Modem Cable RJ11 to RJ11 WHITE 1m Short Lead This particular cable is 1 meter long and costs £1.87 delivered (in March 2017) but 5 meter cables don't seem to cost much more.

Here's how you connect it...

Simple Talk - plug the existing telephone cable into one of the device's two RJ11 sockets and use the new RJ11 cable to connect the device's second RJ11 socket to the phone.

STEP BY STEP...
1. Remove the telephone cable from your existing phone. You'll need to squeeze a little prong on the RJ11 plug (a bit fiddly this) then just pull it out.
2. Plug that same end of the cable into one if the RJ11 sockets on the Ring Device. If it doesn't push in easily with a 'Click' try changing the plug's orientation.
3. Plug one end of your new RJ11 cable into the remaining RJ11 socket on the Ring Device
4. Plug the other end of the RJ11 cable into the telephone's now vacant RJ11 socket - the same one vacated in Step 1.
5. Call the number of your telephone.
6. COVER YOUR EARS ! ! !

This device is EXTREMELY LOUD (the red light also flashes but doesn't draw too much attention - maybe at night?).

It's tempting to knock ONE STAR off for lack of instructions and because it didn't come with the necssary cable (which I would have paid extra for anyway) but honestly, at an all-up price of just £4.43 delivered - including an RJ11 cable - this unit is still GREAT VALUE.

Highly recommended for stone deaf relatives who don't answer the telephone.


Epson C13T295000 - WF100W MAINTENANCE BOX
Epson C13T295000 - WF100W MAINTENANCE BOX
Price: £3.79

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Another EXPENSIVE consumable, 17 Jan. 2017
As soon as I find out how to defeat the software on this so-called Maintenance Box I'll start cleaning the little pad myself in alcohol and reusing it. This is no more than an expensive excuse for Epson to screw its customers again. Forget the miniscule ink volumes in their cartridges which they cheekily use as a cleaning fluid for the jets, hence the need to absorb the cleaning fluid/ink in a little absorbent pad.- Ta-Ra! The Maintenance Box.

I've got an Epson portable WF-100 printer which is NOT CHEAP. It came with partially-filled cartridges. I have had to replace them with new genuine cartridges and well before that first new set of cartridges has run dry, I've had messages reminding me to change the Maintenance Box. I've hardly used the printer.

Come on Epson. You can do better than this. How about a drainable waste tank? What about a cleaning fluid tank which users can fill with their own isopropyl alcohol? When will you stop screwing your customers? Show us some respect.


ALFA AWUS036H 54Mbp/s 2.4GHz USB WiFi Dongle with Detachable 5dBi RP-SMA Antenna
ALFA AWUS036H 54Mbp/s 2.4GHz USB WiFi Dongle with Detachable 5dBi RP-SMA Antenna

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The BEST Free Wifi Parasite, 4 Jan. 2017
I first learned of this booster in a Menorcan restaurant around 2011. I could not find any WiFi but this German yachtsman clearly had so I asked him the secret. He told me to buy an ALFA WiFi Antenna. He said that his yacht was moored a mile away over the water and every morning he picked up the restaurant's free WiFi signal to do his web-based chores thanks to his ALFA WiFi booster.

Unsolicited recommendations like that are the best so I bought one for myself.

I first noticed its benefits when I stayed the weekend at a posh hotel in Malvern offering free Wifi in the lobby and charging an arm and a leg for it in the bedrooms. The 'free' signal was nowhere to be seen in my bedroom using my laptop's internal antenna so I plugged in my ALFA and was immediately able to hook onto the lobby's free Wifi system. I did the same last year in Malta when I stayed in a hotel overlooking the ferry terminal to Gozo. I went there to write a book and needed WiFi access every day. Wifi was wickedly expensive in the room but there was a free service at the Gozo Ferry Terminal that I could see through my window about 1/2 mile away. I suckered my ALFA antenna to the outside of my patio window and plugged in. Free Wifi for three weeks! I probably saved myself between £100-200.

So I don't know how it works but it does. What more can anybody want? It's simple and it works great.


ASVP Shop® Steampunk Goggles Glasses Round Sunglasses Emo Retro Vintage Flip Up Cyber A1
ASVP Shop® Steampunk Goggles Glasses Round Sunglasses Emo Retro Vintage Flip Up Cyber A1
Offered by ASVP Shop
Price: £4.49

5.0 out of 5 stars FAST 'n FUNKY, 7 Sept. 2016
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
These are REALLY funky! And are extremely well-made for the very low price. I was surprised how quickly they were delivered.
They're not going to compete with a pair of Ray-Bans for durability or quality but for occasional use (such as fancy dress parties) they are perfect.


Senhai Pro Handheld Steadycam Video Stabilizer Handle Grip Steady Support for Canon Nikon Sony Camera Cam Camcorder DV DSLR CSS1--Red & Black (Rubber Handle Version)
Senhai Pro Handheld Steadycam Video Stabilizer Handle Grip Steady Support for Canon Nikon Sony Camera Cam Camcorder DV DSLR CSS1--Red & Black (Rubber Handle Version)

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Balancing Act - Basic Instructions, 24 Mar. 2016
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This is a well-designed stabiliser, beautifully made from anodised aluminium sheet and extrusions. It represents excellent value for money and was delivered some days before I expected to receive it. It is well-packaged in specially slotted foam (which could be used in a special carry-box/bag) but alas, there are virtually no instructions. Fortunately, this is not the first stabiliser that I have used over the years.

It seems to me that this unit is not designed to stabilise a heavy camera or a lighter camera with a heavy lens. The heaviest camera will require all three counterweights and the maximum extension of the silver and red pendulum in their adjustment slot. If the camera then permanently tilts to one side it is just too heavy for the stabiliser. The packaging claims the stabiliser is suitable for cameras up to 2.1 lbs weight. I suspect the maximum camera weight is less, say around 1.5 lbs (0.70 kg).

There are two important skills in correctly using a stabiliser; 'balancing' the unit with your chosen camera and the way you physically move it all around when filming.

The three objectives of 'balancing' are to ensure that...

1. ...the camera is shooting horizontally.
Check the different fore-aft camera positions on the mounting platform and change the handle mounting position (five are provided). A good starting place for the handle mounting is directly beneath the camera's centre of gravity. You can estimate this by placing a pencil on a table and moving the base of the camera backwards and forwards until it balances on the pencil.

2. ...the camera is not tilted to one side.
This is achieved by selecting the correct cross-slot on the camera platform (three are provided). These allow the camera to mounted to one side or the other. If your camcorder has a hinged viewfinder screen, balance the stabiliser with it in its usual position. Another final tweak can be applied by slightly adjusting the angle of the lower (silver) leg which is normally dead in line with the red upper section of the leg.

3. ...there are enough counterweights always to keep the camera platform level.
This objective is slightly more complex. Imagine using a huge weight as the counterweight. The camera platform will always remain level when the assembly remains static but when moved about, especially when forwards movement is suddenly stopped, the heavy counterweight will overshoot (aiming the camera at the sky) or will lag behind (aiming the camera at the ground) when it is suddenly 'accelerated'. Remember too that a heavy counterweight also adds to the total weight you will be holding whilst filming.

So the objective is to keep the counterweight as light as possible and use the silver/red adjustment slot to keep the pendulum as short as possible to prevent overshoot or lag as explained above. But always use enough of each to ensure the camera platform remains level at all times.

The perfect balance is when the weight of the counterweight working at its own distance below the ball-joint, slightly exceeds the mass of the camera working at its distance above the ball-joint. Ideally, it's correct when the camera lag and overshoot exactly equals the counterweight lag and overshoot so that the camera platform remains level even when it is being moved jerkily backwards and forwards. If you find this ideal situation, photograph the settings used or mark the stabiliser or keep an accurate note of the settings so that you can use them every time you assemble the stabiliser with that same camera.

Regarding the best way of using the stabiliser. Here are a few rules:

1. Avoid jerky, sudden movements or changes of horizontal direction.
2. Aim the camera by moving the complete body rather than just the hand or arm (leave the arm/body relationship the same).
3. Use gentle horizontal arm movements (forward or backwards) to counteract any tendency for the pendulum effect mentioned above.
4. If the camera rotates to one side in the ball-joint, very gently touch the knurled nut securing the camera to the platform with your unused hand and lightly twist the camera platform in the appropriate direction.

There are very many 'How To' videos on YouTube (some are completely useless) using this actual stabiliser though under a different brand name (Roxant).

This stabiliser still deserves full marks even without instructions mainly due to its excellent design and manufacturing quality.


Andoer® Professional Handheld Stabilizer Video Supports for Canon Nikon Sony Pentax Digital Camera DSLR Camcorder DV
Andoer® Professional Handheld Stabilizer Video Supports for Canon Nikon Sony Pentax Digital Camera DSLR Camcorder DV
Offered by Beauty House-UK
Price: £19.99

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Balancing Act - Basic Instructions, 23 Mar. 2016
This is a well-designed stabiliser, beautifully made from anodised aluminium sheet and extrusions. It represents excellent value for money and was delivered some days before I expected to receive it. It is well-packaged in specially slotted foam (which could be used in a special carry-box/bag) but alas, there are virtually no instructions. Fortunately, this is not the first stabiliser that I have used over the years.

It seems to me that this unit is not designed to stabilise a heavy camera or a lighter camera with a heavy lens. The heaviest camera will require all three counterweights and the maximum extension of the silver and red pendulum in their adjustment slot. If the camera then permanently tilts to one side it is just too heavy for the stabiliser. The packaging claims the stabiliser is suitable for cameras up to 2.1 lbs weight. I suspect the maximum camera weight is less, say around 1.5 lbs (0.70 kg).

There are two important skills in correctly using a stabiliser; 'balancing' the unit with your chosen camera and the way you physically move it all around when filming.

The three objectives of 'balancing' are to ensure that...

1. ...the camera is shooting horizontally.
Check the different fore-aft camera positions on the mounting platform and change the handle mounting position (five are provided). A good starting place for the handle mounting is directly beneath the camera's centre of gravity. You can estimate this by placing a pencil on a table and moving the base of the camera backwards and forwards until it balances on the pencil.

2. ...the camera is not tilted to one side.
This is achieved by selecting the correct cross-slot on the camera platform (three are provided). These allow the camera to mounted to one side or the other. If your camcorder has a hinged viewfinder screen, balance the stabiliser with it in its usual position. Another final tweak can be applied by slightly adjusting the angle of the lower (silver) leg which is normally dead in line with the red upper section of the leg.

3. ...there are enough counterweights always to keep the camera platform level.
This objective is slightly more complex. Imagine using a huge weight as the counterweight. The camera platform will always remain level when the assembly remains static but when moved about, especially when forwards movement is suddenly stopped, the heavy counterweight will overshoot (aiming the camera at the sky) or will lag behind (aiming the camera at the ground) when it is suddenly 'accelerated'. Remember too that a heavy counterweight also adds to the total weight you will be holding whilst filming.

So the objective is to keep the counterweight as light as possible and use the silver/red adjustment slot to keep the pendulum as short as possible to prevent overshoot or lag as explained above. But always use enough of each to ensure the camera platform remains level at all times.

The perfect balance is when the weight of the counterweight working at its own distance below the ball-joint, slightly exceeds the mass of the camera working at its distance above the ball-joint. Ideally, it's correct when the camera lag and overshoot exactly equals the counterweight lag and overshoot so that the camera platform remains level even when it is being moved jerkily backwards and forwards. If you find this ideal situation, photograph the settings used or mark the stabiliser or keep an accurate note of the settings so that you can use them every time you assemble the stabiliser with that same camera.

Regarding the best way of using the stabiliser. Here are a few rules:

1. Avoid jerky, sudden movements or changes of horizontal direction.
2. Aim the camera by moving the complete body rather than just the hand or arm (leave the arm/body relationship the same).
3. Use gentle horizontal arm movements (forward or backwards) to counteract any tendency for the pendulum effect mentioned above.
4. If the camera rotates to one side in the ball-joint, very gently touch the knurled nut securing the camera to the platform with your unused hand and lightly twist the camera platform in the appropriate direction.

There are very many 'How To' videos on YouTube (some are completely useless) using this actual stabiliser though under a different brand name (Roxant).

This stabiliser still deserves full marks even without instructions mainly due to its excellent design and manufacturing quality.


EPSON Maintenance WorkForce Box Ink Cartridge
EPSON Maintenance WorkForce Box Ink Cartridge
Price: £3.70

22 of 22 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Another EXPENSIVE Consumable, 5 Feb. 2016
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
As soon as I find out how to defeat the software on this so-called Maintenance Box I'll start cleaning the little pad myself in alcohol and reusing it. This is no more than an expensive excuse for Epson to screw its customers again. Forget the miniscule ink volumes in their cartridges which they cheekily use as a cleaning fluid for the jets, hence the need to absorb the cleaning fluid/ink in a little absorbent pad.- Ta-Ra! The Maintenance Box.

I've got an Epson portable WF-100 printer which is NOT CHEAP. It came with partially-filled cartridges. I have had to replace them with new genuine cartridges and well before that first new set of cartridges has run dry, I've had messages reminding me to change the Maintenance Box. I've hardly used the printer.

Come on Epson. You can do better than this. How about a drainable waste tank? What about a cleaning fluid tank which users can fill with their own isopropyl alcohol? When will you stop screwing your customers? Show us some respect.
Comment Comments (6) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jul 14, 2017 12:12 PM BST


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