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Maek RSS Feed (Phoenix, AZ United States)

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Viper Specter Bilingual Electronic Soft-Tip Dartboard
Viper Specter Bilingual Electronic Soft-Tip Dartboard
Offered by The Family Game Center
Price: $99.99
5 used & new from $99.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Great board...poor darts, April 7, 2015
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I've always wanted to get a dartboard, but I didn't relish the idea on needle-sized holes in my walls where the gradually inebriated would miss their marks more and more.

First off, hands down, this is a fantastic board. If you're into darts, this board has 50 games built-in (didn't know there was more than one!). It features all 50 games in English or Spanish. If you have an outlet, the provided AC adapter will get you up and running and if you happen to be camping, then 3-AA batteries will take its place making this an extremely versatile board. During the multiple games where we tried the board out, none of the dreaded dart "pop-outs" occurred (i.e. the dart hits the board, but doesn't go in). The sides of the dartboards feature handy receptacles to store the provided 6 darts and there's even a compartment to store the tips - there's certainly no cause to have to store anything separately and then try to figure out where everything else is later.

However, as several reviewers have already noted, the dart quality leaves a considerable amount to be desired. After 5 games, some of the tips were already bending despite their ability to hit the board so well that some elbow grease was required to pull them out. Despite trying to take measures to be more careful pulling the darts out, the tips were still an issue. Casual games could easily be marred by "oh, let me get the darts! Don't touch them!" in an effort to preserve the flawed tips. Even with the extra tips provided, an investment in better darts is DEFINITELY in order.

The board gets full's a pity about the darts, however.

Borderlands: The Handsome Collection - Playstation 4
Borderlands: The Handsome Collection - Playstation 4
Price: $59.00
34 used & new from $49.99

8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Incredible deal...and very pretty to boot!, March 25, 2015
This review is intended for those who have previously played Borderlands 2 and Borderlands: The Pre-sequel either on the PC, PS3, or Xbox360 and now own a next-gen console.

My daughter and I have played Borderlands, Borderlands 2, and the Borderlands: The Pre-sequel on the PS3 and loved it immensely.

When we heard about the release of the Handsome Collection on the PS4 (containing Borderlands 2 and Borderlands: The Pre-sequel), we were excited for numerous reasons:

1. It allows 4-player co-op. While the screens are somewhat small, my daughter and I have a friend who loves to play, but we never could all play at the same time.
2. Our characters transfer. Yep, the same routine that allowed us to transfer our characters to the Vita and back to the PS3 is implemented for the PS4 as well. My daughter and I can continue our fine tradition of playing on the PS4, transferring to the Vita to play on the road, or transferring our characters to the PS3 so we can play online with our friend remotely who, in turn, can upload her character when she visits us if we want to all play on the PS4.
3. It's smooth. BUTTERY SMOOTH. The next-gen hardware makes lighting and reflections (on the guns, pretty) gorgeous and makes the PS3 version seem choppy in comparison. Even when the screen is populated with dozens of enemies, explosions, and gunfire, there is hardly a hiccup.

The Handsome Collection contains all the DLC content that was available prior to the game's release. Considering that you're getting 2 games, $100 +/- in approximate DLC content, plus a better looking and faster-loading game, $59.96 for all of this is a no-brainer. It's an incredibly good deal, especially if you haven't purchased it yet.

We have an exchange student who bought his own PS4 and we enjoy playing it with him...split-screen with my daughter and I and his own dedicated screen. With the online and split-screen play, it still works extremely well and we're having a blast.

Gotta go...we're going to play some more. And my daughter and I have resumed our quest to hit level 72 with our other characters...currently at level 51 and playing in True Vault Hunter mode.


Hot Shot HG-96318 4 Count Bed Bug Glue Trap
Hot Shot HG-96318 4 Count Bed Bug Glue Trap
Price: $3.27

1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Not impressed, March 25, 2015
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
If you honestly suspect that you have bed bugs, don't waste your time and money investing in what basically consists of thin cardboard with sticky glue for confirmation (no killing agents used). With a little research on the web, you can figure how to look for them on your own.

Additionally, 4 "traps" are not necessarily going to tell you the whole story. Bed bugs, I've discovered, don't travel to far from their host and key in on the carbon dioxide that you give off as you sleep. They also tend to avoid light as well. Unless you happen to have a bad infestation, the traps may not necessarily point you in the direction of knowing whether or not you have them.

To make matters worse, the traps are difficult to put together at best. I was severely underwhelmed by trying to make a box-like trap where the instructions unhelpfully tell you to insert the tongue-and-groove slots on one end into the semi-circular holes on the other end. They I wound up resorting to Scotch tape to put mine together; the figures in the instruction manual were decidedly unhelpful.

In our case, we became unfortunate victims of bed bugs recently and we learned quite a bit through an exterminating company that specifically deals with bed bug infestations and nothing else. It's apparently becoming such a prevalent problem these days that it is almost borderline epidemic. What's discouraging is that infestations can easily spread either from a stay at a hotel room or even a movie theater. We had to empty our entire house of clothing/fabric so that the company could take 1 of 2 routes available to us which basically consisted of them nuking our house with chemicals. We had to stay away from the home 6 hours after spraying and our animals had to be out of the house for 24 hours. The chemicals were so potent that 2 flies that had landed on the ground (it's not an aerosol based spray) died on contact.

The other method involves moving everything out of the house that could be potentially damaged by 160 degree heat (including electronics). Then they apply 160 degree heat to the entire home for hours; this actually kills all the bugs and it's extremely effective.

Bottom line is that I think certain companies capitalize on "bed bug" in their product since treating them is extremely difficult. Even "bed bug sprays" are not terribly effective as this causes them to scatter and potentially spread to other areas in your house (including your couch, curtains, etc.).

Do your research and find a specialist who is willing to investigate your home for free and educate you on bed bugs. Contrary to some prevailing beliefs, you do NOT have let go of your mattresses and it is NOT associated with poor hygiene. I hope that you never have to deal with this problem but, if you do, then please don't use this for verification purposes (for which it's intended) or for treatment (for which it's NOT intended).

Neutrogena Rapid Clear Stubborn Acne Spot Gel, 1 Ounce
Neutrogena Rapid Clear Stubborn Acne Spot Gel, 1 Ounce
Price: $8.47
12 used & new from $6.02

5.0 out of 5 stars 11-year old daughter tested and approved!, March 25, 2015
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
My daughter has some stubborn acne, so I thought that I'd give this a try (after Oxy-10). To be honest, I was pretty surprised that it worked so well and quickly. Within 4 hours, one of her bad bumps had reduced considerably. She's pretty excited considering that everything else that she's tried to date has had limited (and very slow) success.

Chappie [Blu-ray + UltraViolet]
Chappie [Blu-ray + UltraViolet]
DVD ~ Hugh Jackman
Price: $24.96

7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A film definitely worth a look..., March 19, 2015
A friend of mine said to me recently, "With his [Blomkamp's] films, once you're open to the film, it's really good." He said this about District 9 and I would say that the same could be said about Chappie.

I don't often write reviews specifically about movies, but Chappie has been so critically maligned (despite the travesty of another film called A.I. which gathered nearly double the positive review percentage as Chappie on that I felt compelled to write about it.

Because I love it.

(Some spoilers ahead, although it doesn't ruin the ending)

Chappie takes place in what appears to be a very "near-future" Johannesberg, South Africa, where crime has become so rampant and out-of-control that police have enlisted the help of Scouts, a very limited AI legion of robots manufactured by Tetraval to address the threat. And they are effective as an opening sequence reveals.

We are introduced to Unit #22 at Tetraval's maintenance facility, a robot that has taken several licks and later quipped as a "bullet magnet." During the opening sequence of a heist gone horribly wrong, it is clear that there is something different about #22 once he's thrown back into action...he is a little more intuitive than his brethren, taking advantage of his enhanced agility to leap onto a shipping container to get the edge on a criminal ring. Towards the end, however, #22's gung-ho aggression gets him smacked down by an RPG that--we later find out--fuses his battery to his chassis.

Now, enter Deon, a young, enthusiastic and very intelligent robotics designer who created the Scouts. He looks at #22 and writes him off as something that isn't salvageable. Deon, however, has other aspirations. He wants to create a fully independent artificial intelligent robot in order to take that next evolutionary leap in robot design. He pitches the idea to the CEO (Sigourney Weaver) who laughs at him and reminds him that they are a weapons company; his idea of pitching a robot capable of expressing an opinion about art is completely off-kilter with the company's vision.

Meanwhile, "aspiring" gangsters--Yolandi, Ninja, and Amerika (aka Yankie)--are licking their wounds on failing to pull off the aforementioned heist off successfully and face an even greater dilemma of coming up with the 20 million needed to placate the crime boss who they failed. Yolandi gets the idea into her head to kidnap Deon so he can "turn off the police robots with a remote"...not knowing, of course, that they require a hardware lock in order to do so ("they are ALWAYS on").

When Deon steals #22's chassis to make his dreams come true, he is kidnapped by the three criminals shortly afterward and forced with violence to activate #22 with the AI algorithm he developed so that they can train the robot to do whatever they want. But their expectations don't take into account that #22 is like a child with no working knowledge of the world...or language for that matter...and his "awakening" is full of trepidation. (Just an aside, Sharlto Copley's mo-cap performance is perfect. Apart from Chappie's eyes occasionally changing dots to indicate emotion, every nuance of Chappie's motion and body language exudes what he's feeling to the core. It's subtle, but very, very well done.)

To add to Deon's complications, a rival robotics designer, Vincent (Hugh Jackman), wants to get his Moose robot on the police force as well, emphatic that human control via a neural helmet is far more important and better than limited AI algorithms. However, Moose is clearly designed with Vincent's military background in mind and seems far better suited in a war than with any kind of police work; its design is very reminiscent of the big hulking robot in the original Robocop. Vincent's ugly tete-a-tetes with Deon ultimately lead to his discovery of Chappie who Vincent views as an "ungodlike" abomination that requires elimination.

What makes the film work for me so well is Blomkamp's unflinching look at the kind of influence that Chappie is exposed to. Deon tries to instill a good streak despite being chased off by the gangsters numerous times. Chappie recognizes Deon as his creator, but comes to relate to Yolandi/Ninja as his mother/father. This becomes a very tragic relationship as Yolandi tries to teach him as any mother would teach a child while Ninja wants him to be violent and combat-ready from day 1. In fact, Ninja's actions towards Chappie are extremely hostile and he exposes Chappie to dangerous situations to "educate him." It's heartbreaking to watch this as Chappie tries to fit in, but is conflicted about doing "crimes" at the same time. As a father myself, there were several punches to the gut for me watching Chappie's ill-treatment progress through the film and yet somehow Chappie keeps trying to rise to greater heights despite his naivete.

At times, Blomkamp's scenes of Ninja trying to teach Chappie come across as humorous to some, but they'll make you question whether you should laugh or not. It's tantamount to watching someone telling a 6 year old how to hold a gun, how to "walk cool", how to "talk", etc., and laughing at the 6 year old trying. It was interesting to note on my 2nd viewing who was laughing and who was watching with horror in the movie was almost split down the middle in the auditorium that I was in.

There's also a religious allegory, albeit to a much lesser degree. At one point, Chappie asks his creator why he was given such a short life (his fused battery gives him 5 days). Tragically, Deon doesn't quite know what to say as he realizes that he was so blinded to make his dream a reality that he ignored the fact that he was using a chassis that ultimately was not capable of sustaining itself. It's that kind of situation that makes some of us raise the exact same question when we lose a loved one. That's not to say that it's questioning religion itself, but the observation and revelation to Chappie as it unfolds is both poignant and sad.

Blomkamp has always painted a bleak picture of humanity and Chappie is no different; humanity is still ugly in its core. What makes Chappie different, however, is that Chappie himself aspires to be something greater despite fumbling and falling along the way. This throws the rest of humanity into sharp relief. Chappie isn't perfect, but Chappie is also a child who doesn't know what perfect really is which gives the film that much more emotional impact despite his astonishing geometric learning growth rate.

Is Chappie for everyone? Emphatically, no. Chappie is NOT Short Circuit, so don't take your 5 year old child to go see it and expect "#5 alive" moments. Chappie isn't trying to make a statement either. Rather, Blomkamp wants us to question ourselves as human beings...he doesn't give you an answer, however. He's posing the question with a's up to you to answer it for yourself.

(On a completely unrelated note, some of the critics focused on the oddest things to knock the film down. Three reviews actually focused on Hugh Jackman's hair as one of the film's disparaging features. Others focused on plausibility, which gets back to my opening statement. As long as you're willing to take the "well, why not" step and not want a film to spend 10 minutes to explain how someone can bypass security so readily, for example, and take it for the story that it's trying to tell, then you'll be in for a much better time. For me, it's irrelevant exposition and accepting it at face value (or writing it off with an explanation of your own) so you can focus on the meat of the story is far more important.)
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Mar 29, 2015 10:19 PM PDT

Head & Shoulders  Instant Relief Dandruff Shampoo, 22.5 Fluid Ounce
Head & Shoulders Instant Relief Dandruff Shampoo, 22.5 Fluid Ounce
Price: $7.99

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Marketing gimmick, March 13, 2015
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I suffer from a bad case of bad, in fact, that the only way that I can keep it away is to cycle through T-Gel, Selsun Blue, and Head & Shoulders in alternating days since one product doesn't keep up with it.

I was intrigued by the "instant relief" shampoo since I do live in Arizona and hotter days (yesterday it was 90) tend to make me itchy on top. Sadly, the tea tree/peppermint formula is more of a gimmick more than anything else. Admittedly, it does feel cool upon application but I didn't feel "instant relief". Apart from the cooling contact of the formula, my skin still felt irritated.

Perhaps it's just because I have a more severe case than others, but this feels more like a marketing ploy to me than a genuine benefit. Apart from that, it contains the same active ingredient as regular Head & Shoulders so it certainly doesn't hurt to try it out for your own benefit.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Mar 18, 2015 12:22 PM PDT

NEET Cable Keeper Cable Manager - Frustration-Free Packaging - Light Blue
NEET Cable Keeper Cable Manager - Frustration-Free Packaging - Light Blue
Price: $12.00
3 used & new from $12.00

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Two cables...not three, March 5, 2015
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Similar to other reviews, I would whole heartedly agree that 2 cables is a practical limit. I have several cables in my car (Honda Civic with 2 car chargers, 2 cables per charger), so dealing with entangling cables has always been frustrating.

This helps me to keep the cables well-sorted. In my case, I have an iPod charging cable and an aux (3.5 mm) cable that both go into my iPod mounted on my dash and despite my best efforts, the cables manage to get themselves entangled in the morning leading to the frustration of disentangling them and avoid yanking out the charger in the process.

Installing both cables (since they both go to the same decision) took my about 30 seconds. Inside the cable manager is a steel wire (presumably) that allows you to mold the cable manager to whatever shape you'd like so that in addition from keeping the cables from entangling, you can mold the sleeve to miss objects like the parking brake, etc.

It works fairly well, although I can't imagine much use beyond the situation that I described. Also, at $12, it feels a little too $8.99, I'd say that it's a solid buy if you have an occasion to use it.

Hoover Air Cordless Lift Bagless Upright Vacuum, BH51120PC
Hoover Air Cordless Lift Bagless Upright Vacuum, BH51120PC
Price: $349.99
2 used & new from $349.99

9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Surprisingly for some improvements, March 2, 2015
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Cordless vacuums induce eye-rolling facial expressions from me. From the first Dustbuster, every attempt at wireless vacuum solutions result in low-powered solutions good for cleaning up "Cheerio messes" but little else.

So I was a little skeptical about Hoover's vacuum. However, that skepticism moved aside for an extremely healthy level of respect. The vacuum comes with 2 lithium-ion batteries and a supplied charger. The batteries were partially charged upon arrival, so charging only took about 2 hours. Once attached to the front of the vacuum--with ease I might add--I turned it on and went to work throughout our house.

Our house has a 30-amp central vacuum system which has served us well in 10 years. However, this little vacuum managed to hold its own and managed to pick up a great deal of cat hair that was apparently still in our carpet (we vacuumed about 4 days ago). And that's WITHOUT the "Boost" mode turned on. Turning on "Boost", the vacuum will ramp up even higher in power (at the cost of battery consumption) and work very hard.

In addition to the energy-conscious "boost" mode, you can even elect to turn the brushes on/off. So cleaning up the "Cheerio messes" can still be accomplished with low power, or you can choose to activate boost and/or brushes independently to get maximum cleaning power.

The vacuum is extremely maneuverable and glides around corners with ease...yes, this vacuum pivots left/right in a circular fashion. Also, the filters are rinse-washable which they recommend doing every 4-6 uses. My suggestion would be 4 uses if you own pets...the good news is that it comes with a 2nd filter so you can still "get up and go" if you find that you need to wash the filter at short notice. It also has a fairly powerful LED light in front that illuminates your path with extremely good energy efficiency.

The bagless compartment detaches/reattaches with extreme ease and emptying it into a garbage can is also extremely easy. It's easy to observe how full it is, not to mention the added satisfaction of seeing it actually do its work.

The vacuum comes with two attachments which leads to my first disappointment. When I was a kid in the 80s, most vacuums that I remember had a space for every attachment. This one has a support for the smaller suction attachment, but there is no real estate for the bigger one. What's more maddening still is that the 2nd filter needs to be stored separately as well. With as much clutter as we have in our closet, having to keep track of 2 additional loose items is another groan-inducing moment for our household. Suggestion - add an additional bracket and a semi-circular bracket to store both items!

Apart from that detriment, it's an extremely good vacuum cleaner.

We have tested it on both linoleum floors and carpeted feels like it's meant for both and works extremely well. If the attachments/loose items are not an issue for you, this is a recommended buy.

LapGear Smart Media Desk II Black (91218)
LapGear Smart Media Desk II Black (91218)
Price: Click here to see our price
48 used & new from $16.80

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Best for touching/swiping only...unless you have a keyboard..., March 2, 2015
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
My wife has a Sony Xperia Z tablet (10") and although she loves using it and it's relatively lightweight (thinner than a pencil!), she does have nerve damage in her wrists so any product that potentially alleviate this is always a welcome experiment.

Unfortunately, it appears that the lap desk tries a little too hard to do a little too much. For a small laptop (15" or less), it works fairly well. However, for a tablet, the reach to the screen is a little problematic for typing. It works great for touching/swiping, but unless you have a Bluetooth keyboard, then you may want to opt out of this one. My wife uses Facebook a good deal so having to type something with arm extended proves to be more tiring than holding the tablet.

However, if you do have a wireless keyboard, then this lap desk works fairly well.

BeoPlay H8 - Gray Hazel
BeoPlay H8 - Gray Hazel
Price: $499.00
4 used & new from $424.15

11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Phenomenal beyond belief!, February 26, 2015
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
When I first got these, I was fully prepared to dock it one star based on price. Let's face it...$499 for a pair of headphones is ludicrous beyond belief. However, considering that a wireless Beats set goes for a ridiculous price of $349 (and I'm not impressed with Beats in general), I tempered my expectations somewhat and decided to rate it on its merits. My reasoning was that if it was flawless, then it'd be worth it.

And oh, it's worth it.

Let's break down this set of headphones from packaging to usage:

I know what you're thinking...silly to start with that, right? However, if you're willing to drop $499 on something that is going to be treated "gently" either by UPS, FedEx, or USPS, you might be wondering if they'll make the trip. This is by far the best packaged set of headphones that I've ever had delivered. The headphones are snugly secured in the same kind of high-density foam that you might expect for a $3,000 camera lens. Every accessory has its own compartment and nothing short of trying to crush this box is going to damage this set. It'll handle jostling well so whether you buy it in the store or on Amazon, it's going to arrive in one piece, rest assured.

Out of the box
The build of the headset is extremely solid. From the brushed aluminum on the sides, to the ear pads, and the swivels (usually a weak link), there isn't a single piece on this head set that feels flimsy in any way.

Placing it on my head, I immediately noticed two things:

1. It's incredibly comfortable. There's sturdy padding on top of varying thicknesses to accommodate differently shaped heads. My hat size is bordering on 8" so most headsets feel too tight/uncomfortable to me. Not this set. I can gladly report that I have worn these as long as 4 hours and felt comfortable the whole time.
2. No click adjusting! I hate headsets that "click" while you adjust them and most of the ones that do either lock into a position that's too tight for me and one click renders them too loose. These headset simply "slide" and will allow minute adjustments. I'm not sure how they managed it, but they created a slide that will stay in place once you're happy with it; there's no slippage whatsoever.

The supplied carrying bag is serviceable, but nothing spectacular - it fits the headphones and you can carry it, full stop. I wished that it would come with a case with the same kind of foam that it was packaged in.

One disappointment, however. The 3.5mm wired jack that comes with the headset do NOT come with gold-plated connectors. I'm a purist at heart, so I invariably gravitate to gold-plated connectors as a result. For a $499 set, I would have expected it as a given, but not here. That said, I already had a gold-plated 3.5mm wire that I use for my iPod in my car, so it wasn't a big loss and you can find longer cables than the supplied 3' cable should you need it.

This is one of the reasons that I have taken as long to review this. I wanted to put this headset through the full gamut of environments from airplanes, living rooms, work environment, and in a car (as a passenger, of course). I also wanted to test it in both wired and wireless modes.

I have a full list of songs that I have tested this set on for reference in case anyone was interested towards the end.

I can say right now, without hesitation, that I can't distinguish between wired or wireless modes. In an airplane, at home (with a plethora of Wi-Fi signals and other potential EM interference), the Bluetooth mode functions just as well as the wired mode even up to 15 feet away.

The sound is remarkable across the full audio spectrum from lows to highs. I am particularly impressed with the punch that this set puts out in bass. My biggest gripe with Beats headphones is that they punch out bass...and that's just about it. The B&Os provide more faithful playback where bass punches only when the original source wanted it to be punched (and not overdriven) along with sparkling highs and crisp, well-defined midranges.

Where the sounds takes a slight hit, admittedly, is in the highs when noise cancellation is turned on. Honestly, however, this is an artifact that happens with ANY noise cancellation as "breathy sounds" (like the synthesized sighing in 10cc's "I'm Not In Love") will take a hit since white noise operates at around the same frequencies. That said, of all noise cancellation modes that I've heard (including the well-respected Bose sets), these take the cake in minimizing the hits to whatever you're listening to. My only caveat is to only use noise cancellation when you NEED to. If you're at home sitting quietly in a chair, there's no need to hit noise cancellation and you'll hear the full sound. However, on an airplane, you'll be grateful to have it since turning it off will only drown whatever you're listening to anyway.

As for noise cancellation - fantastic. I was concerned about the "on ear" design not quite providing the same sound isolation as an "around ear" model, but the snug fit of this headset and its noise cancellation allayed my fears immediately. On a plane, in a car, or at work (for some reason, they LIKE to broadcast white noise over the speakers here), your sound isolation needs will be met.

Bluetooth connections are extremely simple and easy to set up. Just sliding the switch over and holding it in position, you'll receive audio confirmation that your headset is discoverable. Linking up to my Kindle was a breeze and I was up and running.

Battery life is reportedly 14 hours with noise cancellation and Bluetooth on and 35 hours in wired mode. I can definitely report that these time estimates seem right. Charging is accomplished via a micro-USB connection and even if you're on the go, a portable battery pack (like an Anker) will help you out in the rare chance that you need it. A nice plus is that you can actually remove the Li-ion battery and put in a new one, if you happen to have a replacement. To date, I don't know if you can buy one, but having that option available is a big bonus.

Touch operation on the headset is intuitively easy to learn. Tap the middle of the right can on the outside and you can play/pause via Bluetooth with ease. Swipe forward and you'll skip a track. Swipe backward and you'll go back a track. Swipe up to turn on noise cancelling and swipe down to turn it off. For volume, a clockwise motion along the bevel will turn your headset up (gradually, thank goodness!) and the reverse will turn it down. I have not yet seen a wireless mechanism work as well as this touch system and it's great to use. In wired mode, you can use the switch to turn noise cancellation on/off, but you won't have control.

Overall, this is a fantastic set and despite its price, it's well worth it. More "economical" decisions like the Bose line of noise cancelling headphones will treat you well, but if you can afford this set, you will not be disappointed at all. Every single aspect of this headset is amazing and I can't think of anything that would make this any better. It's a Bang & Olufsen're getting the best.

Music that I've used to playtest
As mentioned previously, there were a number of tracks that I listened to in order to playtest it. I have over 17,000 tracks in my music library, but there were specific tracks that I listened to for a variety of reasons indicated below in addition to my normal listening routine.

Mike Oldfield "Amarok"
This 1 track, 60:02 long song is one of my favorites. It also features a choir of 100 Zulu musicians singing in unison during the last minute of the track which tends to crackle most headsets. This headset took it in stride with absolutely no distortion whatsoever...impressive.

10cc "I'm Not In Love"
One specific reason that I tested this song as mentioned previously was to see how the noise cancelling handled the breathing sighs exhibited in this song. This is one of my favorite songs from childhood...and it also happens to be the first song played in Guardians Of The Galaxy. The noise cancellation did hit the breathy sighs, as expected, but it performed better than any noise cancellation headset that I've heard to date.

Deadmau5 "I Remember"
Another favorite. This song hits on just about every frequency from the sparkling, cascading chimes going down at the beginning to the deep punching bass permeating throughout the track. Haley Gibby's voice gives me chills on this track and this headset did the song complete justice. Beats tend to drown this song with "ooo, look...bass!"

Mike Oldfield "Serpent's Dream"
A track with a deep rumbling bass guitar with a flamenco guitar eventually giving way to a soaring guitar solo. Cheaper headsets tend to crackle on some of the high notes. This set handled it like a champ.

Nickelback "Photograph"
This song probably has one of the best-sounding acoustic guitar recordings on the very beginning of the track and listening to those strings getting strummed on a good-sounding headset is always a treat. The B&Os rewarded me never sounded better.

Keane "Everybody's Changing" and "Atlantic"
Good mix of vocals, drums and piano from this great band. Emotional highs in both songs are extremely well-captured and nuanced.

Coldplay "Hurts Like Heaven"
Another great song hitting a wide range of frequencies throughout. This headset made the scintillating soundscape shine.

Rob Zombie "Superbeast"
Surprised to see this on my list? My music tastes are eclectic. :) That said, I was curious to see how the B&Os would handle heavier stuff...and it wasn't a problem at all. I've even tried Korn and Metallica...nothing fazes this set at's definitely no delicate Mozart-only flower.

There are many, many other tracks here that I could list but those were ones that I could remember off the top of my head and ones that I definitely tested across the board. Not a disappointment to be found acoustically...anywhere.
Comment Comments (6) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Feb 28, 2015 5:28 PM PST

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