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Reviews Written by
Aaron C Reskew (England)
(VINE VOICE)   

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NERO 12 (PC)
NERO 12 (PC)

4.0 out of 5 stars Lots of functionality, some a little irritating, 18 April 2013
This review is from: NERO 12 (PC) (CD-ROM)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
There's so much functionality within this suite it's hard to know where to begin. Certainly I haven't used anything like all of it, but then in all honesty I never expected to.

I first used Nero back in the days when it was little more than a CD burning tool, before Windows had that sort of functionality built in. Now it still does the basic burning of CDs and DVDs but also offers distinctions between audio CDs, video DVDs, data discs etc, allows copying of a disc (either direct disc-to-disc or disc-to-image).

For the most part it's very easy to use although there are times it seems a little too clever for its own good. When I was trying to create a disc image of a DVD it kept throwing up all sorts of errors saying the disc was missing or invalid and the like. It turned out the disc was a CD rather than a DVD - admittedly my fault in choosing the wrong disc type but irritating to get an error message that made little sense.

It can also seem like there are so many options it takes a few menu selections to get straight through to where I want to be, and the periodic reminders that a Nero update is available grow tiresome. Maybe it's just me, I'd rather be told about updates when I open the application rather than at random times while I'm trying to use my computer for other stuff.

Overall despite the niggles it seems like a good product. If I were buying it for myself (I got this through the Vine) I'd go for the platinum version which also offers the functionality to rip video DVDs to a video file. That would be great for taking some of my videos on holiday - I could rip them to my laptop and watch them on any screen I could connect to, without having to physically carry the DVDs around with me.


Cocofina 100 Percent Coconut Water 500ml (Pack of 6)
Cocofina 100 Percent Coconut Water 500ml (Pack of 6)
Price: £15.54

0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars OK, but not really to my taste, 28 Mar. 2013
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
When I saw these on the Vine I thought they'd be worth a try. Being a keen cyclist I'm often on the lookout for isotonic drinks and the thought of something naturally isotonic rather than something with an endless list of ingredients with incomprehensible names attracted me.

To be honest the taste of the product isn't really my thing. There's nothing specifically offensive about the taste, I just don't like it all that much. The first one I drank after a ride left me feeling like I'd probably finish the rest of the pack but wouldn't buy it. Another time after a longer and harder ride I put one down so fast it barely touched the sides - that one seemed more enjoyable but then I realised it was probably because it went down too fast to truly taste it.

I'll still finish the pack I've got but honestly doubt I'll be buying more. I like coconut and products containing coconut so was slightly surprised to find I didn't rate these all that highly in terms of taste. I gave three stars because the isotonic properties do seem to help when drunk after pushing myself hard.


AVG Anti Virus 2013: 2 User - 2 Year License (PC)
AVG Anti Virus 2013: 2 User - 2 Year License (PC)

4.0 out of 5 stars Still keeping viruses at bay, 8 Feb. 2013
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
First of all this is the antivirus product only. Unless the price difference is a problem I'd suggest going for the full Internet Security suite which also includes identity protection, firewall etc.

In recent years it seems the incidence of viruses sent by email has exploded, it's far from rare that I'll get a dozen mails at a time all to various random email address at my domain, all of which advise me I've got a parcel to collect or a tax refund or some such, and all of which contain an attachment to open to see further details. Or perhaps I should refer to the past tense, as AVG spots the dodgy attachment and deletes it for me.

It also weeds out tracking cookies which a few web sites still use and removes them. I've never had a virus need removing from my PC so can't comment on how well it does that, but if its removal of email-borne viruses and tracking cookies is anything to go by it's hard to see it letting anything through.


Draper 34104 125 mm Engineer's Scriber
Draper 34104 125 mm Engineer's Scriber
Price: £5.95

3.0 out of 5 stars OK as far as it goes, 8 Feb. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I had to modify this when it arrived as it was slightly rusted, and the replacement Amazon sent was also rusted. So I started out having to file away some of the rust.

It works as a scriber although it doesn't inspire much confidence in its strength. As the picture shows the scribing end is long and thin. Marking brass is easy enough but anything harder (e.g. gauge plate) leaves me struggling to see just where the marks are. I've since bought a bigger and much stronger scriber that marks just about anything (including hardened gauge plate) so don't use this much any more.


AVG Internet Security 2013 and TuneUp Utilities 2013 - 4 User 1 year License(PC)
AVG Internet Security 2013 and TuneUp Utilities 2013 - 4 User 1 year License(PC)
Offered by filmrollen
Price: £24.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Still a good product, 8 Feb. 2013
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I've been using AVG since version 7 so when I saw this chance to grab a copy of AVG 2013 I took it.

The product still seems much the same as before although the user interface has been changed since 2012 to look much more like Windows 8. To be honest I preferred the previous UI - it irritates me to have to figure out where everything has been put when the front end is rearranged like this. On a positive note at least there's no doubt that the upgrade from 2012 is complete.

Preferences aside, this version shows five tiles for Computer, Web Browsing, Identity, E-mails and Firewall, and each one has an indicator underneath to show its status. That lets you see at a glance whether there are any problems with any aspect of the system - when I first installed it I got a warning that one of the databases was outdated, so I knew to update right there and then.

I've had an issue with VProtect (which appears to be related to the SafeSearch part of AVG) crashing so I don't know if I'm getting the full benefits of that. The problem was with a 32-bit version of Windows 7, as yet I haven't used it under 64-bit Windows in anger so it may be a machine-specific issue.

Overall I still rate AVG highly and recommend it.


Samsonite Men's Top-Handle Bag Black BLACK .
Samsonite Men's Top-Handle Bag Black BLACK .

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Love this bag, 15 Nov. 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
When I bought my new laptop it was too big to fit in my existing laptop bag (another Samsonite), but only just. Either way it meant I needed a new bag, and I needed one quickly due to a looming trip abroad where I really didn't want to be without my new laptop. I'd seen other bags I thought were great but the price tags of nearly £200 put me off. Then I saw this one, at a price I was happy with.

My first thought was that I really didn't like the twin strap holding the laptop in place, but soon realised that it wasn't going anywhere and that it was just as easy to work with as the pouch on my old bag. It's got a couple of pockets for cables, dongles etc, inner pockets that are great for taking power chargers, USB drives etc (my Kindle fits perfectly into one of them), and on the other side it has pockets that can be used for either keeping documents flat or carrying other bits (I put my glasses, GPS and a load of paperwork in mine)

Fully loaded it can be heavy, hauling it through an airport isn't a lot of fun, but as long as you're not carrying a backpack (as I was) you can use the shoulder strap which makes it easier.

The bag feels well made, it feels like it will protect my laptop from as much abuse as it's reasonable to expect from any bag, it's expandable (if you want it to get even heavier) and managed to swallow up everything I threw at it over two international flights, a bunch of silly long drives, and having all sorts of stuff put into it. This is my third Samsonite bag and based on past experience I'm expecting it to last a long while - my last one is four years old and still looks pretty much as good as new.


DiskImage
DiskImage
Offered by Think It Find It Love It
Price: £6.99

4.0 out of 5 stars It seems to do the job very nicely, 15 Nov. 2012
This review is from: DiskImage (CD-ROM)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
It's hard to review a product like this one, on the basis it typically either works or it doesn't work. I've only needed to restore a disk image once and that was as a result of messing about with registries etc (secure in the knowledge that if this product didn't work I had an image taken with another product that I know works).

As it happened this product did what I expected, it restored my image to the drive and everything worked as expected afterwards. I appreciate it claims to be able to do a whole lot more than that but I never needed to test the claims so can't comment on it.

Others have commented about how slow it is to take a disk image. The first time I transferred a 60GB image from one drive to another (before I got hold of this) taking the image took about 4 hours. I figured this one would take a comparable time so went out for the afternoon while it ran (as a rule I have little interest in watching a progress bar for more than about 5 minutes) - so for all it may seem to be of limited use to be unable to comment on processing speed, taking a disk image isn't the kind of thing I'd expect to sit and watch anyway.


Excel 2010 eLearning Kit For Dummies
Excel 2010 eLearning Kit For Dummies
by Faithe Wempen
Edition: Paperback
Price: £26.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Great introduction to Excel, 15 Nov. 2012
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I got this book to help my wife get to grips with Excel - I've been using it professionally for many years.

She found it very helpful, as with most of the Dummies books she found it didn't assume anything and guided her through what she needed to know to get to grips with the basics of Excel. Now she can put together a basic spreadsheet, which is handy as it means I don't get asked to do it unless it's either complex, or she needs a specific functionality she can't figure out. So on that basis alone, I'm happy.


Linksys PLWK400 Powerline AV Wireless Network Extender Adapter Kit
Linksys PLWK400 Powerline AV Wireless Network Extender Adapter Kit

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Does the trick nicely, 15 Nov. 2012
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I was dreading having to run a network cable all around my house to get my PlayStation onto the internet. Thankfully this handy little doodad came along which takes the problem away. I can plug it into the mains downstairs and plug the Playstation into it, then plug the other one upstairs and connect it to the router. Hey presto, ethernet over the mains, no need to run cables and no need to rip up the floor.

Some day I want to test it to see how well it will handle a network switch at each end, now that really would be handy!


Dirt Devil DRC014 Wet and Dry Handheld Rechargeable Vacuum Cleaner, 6 V
Dirt Devil DRC014 Wet and Dry Handheld Rechargeable Vacuum Cleaner, 6 V

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Works well, but..., 20 Aug. 2012
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
When I saw the details of charging this device I thought the manufacturer was having a laugh. 16 hours of charge for 15 minutes of use? That sounds like something to be consigned to the "useless paperweight" pile from the outset. That said when you're using it in short bursts those 15 minutes last a surprisingly long time. This isn't designed to be used like your regular mains-powered vacuum cleaner, it's for picking up small amounts, and it does that very well.

I primarily use mine for clearing brass cuttings from my lathe, a job it does admirably. For something that's clearly designed as a small unit, it seems a shame not to have finer attachments for getting into nooks and crannies - such a nozzle would make cleaning my lathe easier and also help with things like cleaning dust out of computer keyboards and all sorts of other dark corners.

The suction this thing has is a lot more than I'd expect given its size. I found trying to empty it to be quite fiddly although I've only had to do it once so it may be something that will be easier next time around.

Overall I'd rate the product highly, but an extra nozzle would probably nudge it up to 5 stars for me.


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