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Helpful Votes: 86




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Paul "Paul" RSS Feed (Bellingham, WA)

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Acer Iconia A1-810-L416 7.9-Inch 16 GB Tablet (Pure White)
Acer Iconia A1-810-L416 7.9-Inch 16 GB Tablet (Pure White)
2 used & new from $155.00

15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Perfect small tablet in the ideal 4:3 aspect ratio, September 24, 2013
This is by far the best mix of performance and price I have found in small tablets. But perhaps the biggest reason to love this is the aspect ratio: it is 4:3 rather than the standard 16:9 used by the vast majority of Android tablets.

I have a 7" tablet which I use mostly for reading and web browsing, but the screen is just too small to comfortably view most web pages. I want a "one-hand-able" device so don't want a 9/10" tablet, so a 4:3 small tablet is the perfect mix. The iPad Mini would be great hardware-wise, but I strongly prefer Android to iOS.

Except when viewing movies (which I rarely do) I hold the device in Portrait mode, and the extra screen width makes a huge difference. For example, the screen is nearly 40% larger than a 7" tablet, and is actually *wider* than 9" tablets, but much shorter, lighter, and less expensive.

PROS
4:3 aspect ratio
Lightness and portability
Excellent build quality
Android, not iOS
Much cheaper than an iPad mini
More tablet-aware apps than I expected
Quad-core CPU performance
USB port, SD card slot
Latest 4.2.2 Android release

CONS
Non-Retina display (1024x768, same as iPad Mini)
Slightly larger than an iPad Mini, so its accessories (e.g., covers) cannot be used
Not as many tablet-aware apps as the iPad Mini
My first unit would not boot up, but an amazingly quick and painless return process (thanks Amazon!) had a new and perfect unit at my door in 36 hours.

NOTE ON L416 vs L888 MODELS:
There are two model numbers of this tablet: A1-810-L416 and -L888. Each is listed for sale separately at Amazon, which has led to much confusion.

Contrary to information in other reviews/answers above, L888 is merely a minor hardware revision--the fundamental hardware/software specs are identical: [...]

The only difference seems to be the CPU: L416 uses the Cortex A7, L888 is A9. Sources differ on which is better. This is the best article I've found, which gives the nod to the A9: [...]

HEADS UP
The "HP Slate 8 Pro" is a 4:3 tablet coming in Fall 2013, with a Retina-quality display. This will be the perfect device in my opinion, and you may want to wait and check it out. However it will surely be significantly more expensive.

UPDATE 12/2/2013: The HP Slate 8 Pro is now available, and is almost exactly double the price of the Acer. HP Slate S 8-7600US 8-Inch 16 GB Tablet (Soft White) Is the higher-resolution screen and other hardware specs worth the difference? Perhaps to you, but for me: not even close.

RANT
Why the heck don't more Android tablet-makers use 4:3??!! In my opinion this is one of the main reasons iPads have been so much more successful than Android tablets. I'm amazed and frustrated that so few seem to notice or care about this extremely important difference.


Acer NT.L1CAA.002;A1-810-L888 7.9-Inch 16GB Tablet
Acer NT.L1CAA.002;A1-810-L888 7.9-Inch 16GB Tablet

10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Perfect small tablet in the ideal 4:3 aspect ratio, September 23, 2013
This is by far the best mix of performance and price I have found in small tablets. But perhaps the biggest reason to love this is the aspect ratio: it is 4:3 rather than the standard 16:9 used by the vast majority of Android tablets.

I have a 7" tablet which I use mostly for reading and web browsing, but the screen is just too small to comfortably view most web pages. I want a "one-hand-able" device so don't want a 9/10" tablet, so a 4:3 small tablet is the perfect mix. The iPad Mini would be great hardware-wise, but I strongly prefer Android to iOS.

Except when viewing movies (which I rarely do) I hold the device in Portrait mode, and the extra screen width makes a huge difference. For example, the screen is nearly 40% larger than a 7" tablet, and is actually *wider* than 9" tablets, but much shorter, lighter, and less expensive.

PROS
4:3 aspect ratio
Lightness and portability
Excellent build quality
Android, not iOS
Much cheaper than an iPad mini
More tablet-aware apps than I expected
Quad-core CPU performance
USB port, SD card slot
Latest 4.2.2 Android release

CONS
Non-Retina display (1024x768, same as iPad Mini)
Slightly larger than an iPad Mini, so its accessories (e.g., covers) cannot be used
Not as many tablet-aware apps as the iPad Mini
My first unit would not boot up, but an amazingly quick and painless return process (thanks Amazon!) had a new and perfect unit at my door in 36 hours.

NOTE ON L416 vs L888 MODELS
There are two model numbers of this tablet: A1-810-L416 and -L888. Each is listed for sale separately at Amazon, which has led to much confusion.

Contrary to information in other reviews/answers above, L888 is merely a minor hardware revision--the fundamental hardware/software specs are identical: [...]

The only difference seems to be the CPU: L416 uses the Cortex A7, L888 is A9. Sources differ on which is better. This is the best article I've found, which gives the nod to the A9: [...]

HEADS UP
The "HP Slate 8 Pro" is a 4:3 tablet coming in Fall 2013, with a Retina-quality display. This will be the perfect device in my opinion, and you may want to wait and check it out. However it will surely be significantly more expensive.

RANT
Why the heck don't more Android tablet-makers use 4:3??!! In my opinion this is one of the main reasons iPads have been so much more successful than Android tablets. I'm amazed and frustrated that so few seem to notice or care about this extremely important difference.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Mar 16, 2014 6:12 PM PDT


Angry Birds Inflatable Pigs Bop Bag
Angry Birds Inflatable Pigs Bop Bag
Offered by CAL Mart
Price: $13.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Don't give up! It does actually work, August 31, 2013
= Durability:3.0 out of 5 stars  = Fun:4.0 out of 5 stars  = Educational:1.0 out of 5 stars 
I was initially frustrated, as other reviewers have been, when my first setup attempt failed because I could not enough water into the bottom chamber to keep it upright.

But after reading one helpful review here, I realized the trick: you must fill the water chamber on the bottom *first* or there won't be enough room to contain the necessary weight of water.

I partially deflated the top section, then used a small funnel and the sink faucet to fill the bottom chamber. I re-inflated the top section, and it works great!

It is simple once you figure it out, but instructions are clearly lacking.


LG Chocolate Touch VX-8575 Phone (Verizon Wireless)
LG Chocolate Touch VX-8575 Phone (Verizon Wireless)

39 of 40 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best. Phone. Ever., December 2, 2009
I am very hard to please, and I have owned two other LG msuic phones but didn't liked either of them. This phone is different: it is the best phone I've ever owned.

It has every feature I want in a phone, in a beautiful package that is very user-friendly.

- Great battery life
- Excellent sound quality
- Good speakerphone
- A 3.5mm audio jack
- FM radio
- Music player with a well-designed user interface
- Great photo and video viewer
- USB data cable included (!)
- The ability to plug-and-sync automatically, even with non-Rhapsody music players(!) such as Windows Media Player or MediaMonkey (which supports podcasts :)
- The ability to mount the USB card as a generic device for drag-and-drop support for ringtones, photos, music, videos... you name it.

And Verizon doesn't force you to buy a data plan for this phone, which I don't neeed.

All in all, a perfect phone for me.
Comment Comments (7) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Oct 10, 2013 11:43 AM PDT


A Colbert Christmas: The Greatest Gift of All
A Colbert Christmas: The Greatest Gift of All
DVD ~ Elvis Costello
Price: $7.97
37 used & new from $0.93

5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars It's all about the music, December 13, 2008
The music is the best part of this DVD, so do yourself a favor and download it from iTunes. The artists, all talented singers in their respective genres, poke fun at themselves with witty and subversive lyrics. The music is cant-get-it-out-of-your-head catchy, and the production values are first-rate.

The bonus track "Cold,Cold Christmas" is one of the better cuts, but "Please Be Patient" and "Have I Got a Present For You" are instant classics for the hell-bound atheists among us.

The video portions of the program... I didn't find quite as hilarious. But they are still far better than almost anything else on TV, and they are vintage Colbert. So if you don't like it then you simply don't "get" Colbert.

Or put another way: if you "get" Stephen Colbert, you will love this DVD.


The God Delusion
The God Delusion
by Richard Dawkins
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $16.08
354 used & new from $2.59

17 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another great book from Dawkins, December 26, 2006
This review is from: The God Delusion (Hardcover)
Another indispensable book by Dawkins. A must-read for all who value critical thinking on the subject of religious belief.
Comment Comments (9) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Dec 28, 2006 3:16 PM PST


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