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Reviews Written by
Stephen Lord (London, UK)
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good all-round option for protecting your iPhone, 29 Mar. 2012
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Despite very clear instructions and no difficulty in separating the screen protector from the peel-away liners, I made a bit of a hash of the first screen I put on, which was for the back of the iPhone (clearly the obvious place for a first attempt). I had under-estimated the amount of dust floating around. You can make a lot of attempts to re-position the screen and if you've covered it with fingerprints, take it off all together, wash it in soapy water, rinse and re-apply. I'm sure I also mucked up the dust-removal technique, which involves using sellotape to remove any dust on the underside of the screen protector.

The second attempt, on the all-important front screen, was much easier, with no need to wash dust off the screen or use any sellotape to pull away any dust. Follow the instructions and you'll do fine.

Now, the product itself. I believe the quality is pretty good though I've not seen a lot of these things. I have a lot of experience with the more upmarket but potentially problematic Zagg InvisibleShield, but that product is probably inadvisable for an iPhone because you need a very clear screen and to retain the tactile qualities of the iPhone screen. Too much protection and the screen won't function as well as it should. Expertshield has a great balance of protection and useability. Too little protection -- I'm thinking of all those screen protectors that sell in 6-packs and have to be replaced -- and the screen protector is failing in its basic job and no doubt looks naff too. I'm happy with my ExpertShield, the phone suffers no loss in sensitivity and I might have a look at the anti-glare version next time, but would definitely order another if needed.


AIR CRASH Northumberland (General History)
AIR CRASH Northumberland (General History)
by Russell Gray
Edition: Paperback
Price: £12.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A great read, 22 Mar. 2012
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Despite the very negative-sounding title, this book is uplifting in spirit as the investigators went to great lengths to research each crash, its history and of course a site visit. It's archaeology of a sort, but each crash is presented as a story, most of them fairly short but one or two, such as the outstanding story of a Vulcan bomber that caught fire, are pretty gripping. A good read if you like history, planes and the northeast and in no way a nerdy read, the people who write it are very interested in the human side of these stories. I'd like to look for others in this series, if there are any.


Griffin Elan Form Graphite Case for iPhone 4
Griffin Elan Form Graphite Case for iPhone 4

4.0 out of 5 stars Looks the business, 22 Mar. 2012
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When it arrived, I thought this cover looked like it should cost £1.50 at a street market, there's minimal packaging and I wasn't sure I'd been sent the case I ordered. In fact the pattern on the back is not what I ordered, it's not the faux-graphite, but a faux-leather, but otherwise the same model and at this price, it's good basic protection. The inside is a softer material than the plasticky exterior. The fit is precise and not at all loose and I don't see this one coming off easily.The phone looks unobtrusive in this case and sufficiently protected for something that I want to remain pocket-sized.


Powerglide
Powerglide
Offered by Amber Gold
Price: £5.72

4.0 out of 5 stars Best New Riders album, 30 Oct. 2011
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This review is from: Powerglide (Audio CD)
Powerglide takes me back to the days when I would play the whole album through. It's a great collection of classic country rock, numerous highlights but just sit and play the lot, I think it's the best New Riders album.


The Dark Side Of The Moon [2011 - Original Recording Remastered] [Experience Edition]
The Dark Side Of The Moon [2011 - Original Recording Remastered] [Experience Edition]
Price: £24.41

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Live Dark Side is the real gem in this remaster, 30 Oct. 2011
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I tend to think that the remastering thing is just another way for old bands to churn their back catalogue and generate a bit more revenue. They can hardly be blamed for that given the fall in revenue for CDs these days - just look at the bargains that can be had among '70s classic CDs. Nonetheless, anything that can be done to improve one of the top Rock albums of all time must be welcomed. I wouldn't replace every album just because a remaster came out, but I would certainly buy Dark Side again.

But the real surprise is how good the live rendition is. Amazing sound quality, the live version gives the feeling that the band are standing up for this one (remember the stories of them recording some tracks on Dark Side lying flat on their backs) and wide awake too. The Live album stays close to the studio version but you get more jazzy riffs here and there. It's not just an afterthought tacked on to get more sales, it's reason alone to buy this album one more time.


iBank 4 (Mac)
iBank 4 (Mac)

25 of 25 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Easy transtion from Quicken, works like a charm, 10 Mar. 2011
This review is from: iBank 4 (Mac) (Software)
I switched to iBank after crossing the great divide back to the Mac world. To massive relief, iBank imported all my Quicken data, so nothing to re-input. The layout is similar, the register looks like an American cheque book but the categories all made sense for me (categories are used to categorise expenditure types, useful for doing tax returns). Best of all, the support for iBank is really very good. Have no fear with this one, it's not overly huge or complicated but you could run a small business on it.


Wye Canoe?: Canoeist Guide to the River Wye (Environment Agency Science Report)
Wye Canoe?: Canoeist Guide to the River Wye (Environment Agency Science Report)
by Environment Agency Wales
Edition: Spiral-bound
Price: £9.95

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars You need this book!, 1 Feb. 2010
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Wye Canoe: Canoeist Guide to the River Wye (Environment Agency Science Report)

It's not a great book but rather a great waterproof map with all that you need for a good canoe trip down the Wye. Shortcomings of the text are mainly concerned with lack of info on camping places which an independent boater needs to plan their trip. Info on pubs would have been nice too and of critical importance, details on the takeouts. But hey, the paper is waterproof which is very thoughtful, the maps are good, and the book folds well so you can keep it tied down under a bungie on your boat.


Sennheiser OMX 80 Sport II - Stereo Clip On Earphones For Secure Fit During Sports - Blue
Sennheiser OMX 80 Sport II - Stereo Clip On Earphones For Secure Fit During Sports - Blue

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good sound, but only if you hold them to your ears, 1 Feb. 2010
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Sennheiser OMX 80 Sport II - Stereo Clip On Earphones For Secure Fit During Sports - Blue

Sports use is hard on earphones so I decided on this price point for my next pair. That way it's not the end of the world when the cable or contacts start to crackle. The sound is good and there's certainly enough bass. The fit is more comfortable than the Sennheiser neckband earphones I was using before, it's much better but now I understand the virtues of Sennheiser's neckband style in that it forces the earphones into your ears and forces the sound in too. The OMX 80s sit on your ears and don't do a good job of keeping out ambient noise in the fairly noisy gym I go to. Squeeze the earphones against your ears and you'll get a great sound, but as they sit loosely over the entrance to the ear and not in it, you get a quieter treble-only sound.

They'd be fine outside of a noisy environment but don't have a snug fit unless you have huge circular earholes that happen to match this style.


Sennheiser PMX 80 Eco Rugged Stereo Neckband Headphones for Sports
Sennheiser PMX 80 Eco Rugged Stereo Neckband Headphones for Sports

3.0 out of 5 stars After a few months, not rugged enough for serious sports users, 5 Dec. 2009
I enthused over these when I first bought them and am still giving them hard use after 6 months, but they don't quite live up to expectations. The sound is good, not as good as my £70 Shures but you pay a lot more for just a little improvement. The other good point is that they do work well when your ears fill with sweat when you're on the treadmill, better than my Shures did and I should think better than the soft-foam in-ear types. They feel a little uncomfortable after 50 mins or so in your ears because the springiness in the design keeps them pushed into your ears. But then you should probably not have earphones in your ears for any longer; give your ears a rest!

The weak points are the cable, which will develop crackles when it flies about. This can be mitigated to some extent by using the spring clip to attach the cable to your shirt. The other problem is that the jack that goes into your mp3 player has to be pressed in very hard. A tiny fraction of looseness or movement and you lose half the connection. I'm thinking of shaving some of the plastic surrounding the jack on mine so I can push it in a bit further, but if that fails, I haven't lost too much money and might be in the market for another set anyway.

In conclusion, the sports market is a tough one for such small, delicate products and as these are a good price and sound good, you can take the view that if you get 6 months use out of them, they're pretty good value and you won't worry about them at that price, so I say 3 stars.


Thunder and Sunshine
Thunder and Sunshine
by Alastair Humphreys
Edition: Paperback
Price: £7.99

41 of 41 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Adventure, thriller, crime, romance ... and excellent bike touring insights, 23 Jun. 2008
This review is from: Thunder and Sunshine (Paperback)
Alastair's first book was great: ordinary Yorkshire lad toughens up in the crucible of Africa and triumphs. In his second and much better book, Alastair pushes himself even harder and becomes a Nietzschean superman, riding the Road of Bones in Siberia in winter in temperatures of minus 40 degrees. It's quite incredible how tough a man can become and still remain human, literate and sensitive, as Alastair does.

This book has it all, it's a great travel read, a look into the human soul and how most people, given enough determination, could attempt something like this and grow massively in the process. For bikers, it's something special, as he has some great insights and tips for world bike touring and camping. Of all the world cycling books, this one is most relevant and useful for anyone thinking of or planning an adventure like this.


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