Your Garage Summer Reading Amazon Fashion Learn more nav_sap_plcc_ascpsc Songs of Summer Fire TV Stick Sun Care Patriotic Picks Shop-by-Room Amazon Cash Back Offer roadies roadies roadies  Amazon Echo  Echo Dot  Amazon Tap  Echo Dot  Amazon Tap  Amazon Echo Starting at $49.99 All-New Kindle Oasis AutoRip in CDs & Vinyl Segway miniPro STEM
Profile for Bertram28 > Reviews

Browse

Bertram28's Profile

Customer Reviews: 45
Top Reviewer Ranking: 62,373
Helpful Votes: 562


Community Features
Review Discussion Boards
Top Reviewers

Guidelines: Learn more about the ins and outs of Your Profile.

Reviews Written by
Bertram28 RSS Feed

Show:  
Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5
pixel
StarTech.com USB 3.0 eSATA Dual Hard Drive Docking Station with UASP for 2.5/3.5-Inch SSD/HDD 6 Gbps (SDOCK2U33EB)
StarTech.com USB 3.0 eSATA Dual Hard Drive Docking Station with UASP for 2.5/3.5-Inch SSD/HDD 6 Gbps (SDOCK2U33EB)
Price: $78.79
58 used & new from $69.83

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Quick enouch and reliable, November 5, 2015
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Quite surprised so many negative reviews. Not my experience, possibly due to other hardware or software differences.

I purchased the StarTech.com USB 3.0 / eSATA Dual 2.5/3.5" SATA HDD Dock with UASP, part # SDOCK2U33EB. NOTE: two drive, not 4 drive capacity. As the name states, I use both 2.5' (SSDs) and 3.5"spinning drives with it. The Amazon purchase was in March 2015, perhaps updated from earlier. I've used the dock intermittently for 7 months.

I ran Windows 8.1 Pro when purchased and Windows 10 Pro now. I use a tablet as a desktop (Microsoft Surface Pro 3, normally on the Surface Pro 3 dock station for its added USB, Ethernet, DisplayPort connections). So I'm using Windows, a purchased, not home made device, with USB version 3 connections, full power, no battery. That eliminates many who had (IMO: a self-inflicted) complaints.

Next, I do not leave the dock connected and on all the time. It is simply an offline backup method so why leave it on risking possible (never happened yet) malware or virus. Offline is safer.

As I started pen this, I completed a 50GB copy from my internal SSD to a slower SATA 3 Gb/s spinner, I'm now copying another folder 33GB in size. Done long ago. I see transfer speeds of 15 to 86 Mbps. Windows Explorer fully reported removal of a SSD (press down on left side ejector) then insertion of a 3.5" spinner. No freezes. No need to reboot etc.

I do not award full 5 stars. The industry is awash with its SATA 1, SATA II, eSATA, PCIe, NVMe protocols with unrealistic speed ratings fully not relevant but repeated by manufacturers without a heads up to the uninformed consumer. They could do better. I have purchased and returned a competitors dock that did not transfer at USB 2 speeds so yes, this is better than other HDD docks.


Anti-slip Water Resistant Microsuede Loveseat Furniture Protector Slipcover - GPD, Chocolate
Anti-slip Water Resistant Microsuede Loveseat Furniture Protector Slipcover - GPD, Chocolate
Price: $48.94
2 used & new from $35.00

14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Way too proud marketing, October 24, 2015
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I purchased this cover six months ago. I waited to comment on its wear.

The marketing comment: "Anti-slip backing significantly cuts down on slippage" is not accurate. That claim should be qualified to the material it is covering. It may work over cloth or suede; but, definitely will slip when covering leather. It is as effective a cover as the bath towels I used prior to its purchase.

I have washed the cover maybe least six times in a delicate cycle then low heat dry. The 'anti-slip' material, similar to that found on some area rugs, is shedding even from wash one. I find little pieces of it near the loveseat it covers. I provide a photo of an ice chest near this cover that I neglected to clean of the anti-slip fell off / shedding material. Unfortunately, the material does attract and retain dog hair too.

On the other hand (for 3 stars) , I find the cover a better fit, a less unobtrusive color, and thicker material than my beach towels. I wouldn't buy another however.

Tip if your cover is slipping too: Hang a rice bag over the top of your cover. The added weight helps to keep it from slipping. Too bad the marketing folks have seemingly little experiential knowledge of this product. They might have asked for the addition of simple loops on the top so a bungee cord or something customer-supplied might keep it from slipping back towards the seat.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Nov 18, 2015 9:24 AM PST


HALT Dog Repellant Spray
HALT Dog Repellant Spray
Price: $7.58
18 used & new from $2.30

19 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It is a repellant, not a death ray, October 24, 2015
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
No, this product did not fully stop a determined dog. Yes, it and my Aussie did affect the dog enough for my leashed dog and I to walk away from the sulking dog. The silly dog hung around long enough (5 hours) for animal services to haul it away, armed with a mandatory court appearance for its owner.

This is the second time I've used a pepper spray on an attacking dog. I purchased the first from a gun store and was made aware then that dogs are less affected than humans. The first product cost twice as much as HALT was far less spray. I will purchase a replacement HALT or two.

From three dog attacks in an area with mandatory leash laws, I've learned this. Carry a camera or cell with camera. Set the camera to print the date on the print. Take photos first then spray when within 7 feet or so. Both products sprayed that far with a squirt gun like directed spray. Aim for the eyes. Do not spray your leashed dog. Do not intervene between the dogs unless you happen to like pepper spray. If your dog is unable to defend itself, carry a baton or stick too. Animal control folks, who do encounter this situation frequently, tell me that pepper spray will not be absolutely effective on a dog. It is a deterrent. A bullet is effective but not my preference, hopefully not yours either.

Ignore reviewers who confirm the spray did not stop an attack. HALT states "use this product to repel". It does not say it Will Stop. I bought. I used sooner than hoped. HALT held more that another similar product for half the price. It sprayed. We walked away. Aggressor caught. Veni Vidi Vici. What's not to rate as 5 stars here?

Side benefit: the red residue positively identifies the dog to animal control. Hard to see, perhaps, but the photo is of yesterday's loser. Red nose. Closed left eye. Now fed by taxpayers.
Comment Comment | Permalink


Microsoft Wireless Display Adapter v1
Microsoft Wireless Display Adapter v1
Offered by Park Deals
Price: $42.98
30 used & new from $22.00

22 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Easy, October 24, 2015
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I was able to connect my Microsoft Surface Pro 3 running Windows 10 to my Panasonic TC-P65VT50 Plasma HDTV within two minutes, see and hear whatever was on the Surface also on my TV.

The Surface Pro 3 is Miracast enabled if using Windows 8.1 and 10. Its native screen resolution is 2160 x 1440 and will support attachment of additional HDMI devices.

I did not purchase the adapter to view TV; but, my new projector has not yet arrived. I had no expectation that my 2012 TV even had a powered USB connector since its specifications did not clearly state that fact. I plugged the adapter into one of its HDMI ports then one of its USB ports and the little white light on the adapter lit up. Then it was as simple as connecting the Surface to the adapter device. Like magic, it worked. I can see everything on my Surface also on my TV. PowerPoint played fine including imbedded video with audio.

No, the Surface image did not fill the 65" HDTV screen fully. The free Microsoft Wireless Display Adapter application has a slider to resize the image. That allowed me to fit the full Surface screen to the TV, leaving some black to the image sides. The sound was louder than normal from television. The image looked as clear as on my Surface only much larger. If I have the same results thru a HD projector, then mission accomplished.

FYI: the adapter kit includes a separate male / female HDMI plug of almost 7 inches. It would allow you to run HDMI cable from the wireless adapter to your TV / projector. That might be useful if you have difficulty reaching a powered USB port.

Logically, I would agree that a wired HDMI or DisplayPort connection could pass more audio and video data than this wireless device; but with the inconvenience of being tethered to the other device. Oddly, I use satellite or 100 Mbps wired Ethernet to watch movies on my TV, not a cell phone or a computer. So this wireless adapter seems quite adequate to my needs. My tip: ensure you do meet the specifications of the adapter by checking the available Technical Data Sheet.

UPDATE: Also no issues connecting to a Epson PowerLite 1284 projector. Resolution at projector is 1920 x 1440. No direct cable connection, pure wireless. Sound is louder than at the PC. I also tried the Epson USB connection to the projector. Not any higher perceptible resolution and no sound. Very minor delay apparent only to me not audience. This is a keeper with direct HDMI or USB as alternate plans.
Comment Comment | Permalink


Nikon COOLPIX AW120 16.1 MP Wi-Fi and Waterproof Digital Camera with GPS and Full HD 1080p Video (Black) (Discontinued by Manufacturer)
Nikon COOLPIX AW120 16.1 MP Wi-Fi and Waterproof Digital Camera with GPS and Full HD 1080p Video (Black) (Discontinued by Manufacturer)
5 used & new from $199.00

4.0 out of 5 stars Really is waterproof, drop proof, April 12, 2015
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Had Amazon stocked the newer AW 130, I would have ordered it to replace my AW 120 assumed lost overboard, I was content enough with the AW 120 to buy another or newer model. I recovered my AW 120 after it spent more than 2 weeks in 6 feet of water. Mind you, not only that long underwater; but with many scratches and three significant dents from drops mostly while on rough boat trips. The AW 130 is still not available here (almost tax day 2015).

So why not 5 stars? At max resolution, file sizes are about 6Mb from a camera advertised at "16 megapixels" setup for largest image size. My lower res Nikon Coolpix had larger file sizes. The lens, while fairly sharp in full sun exposure, is still max 24mm optical so I end up cropping to get the image I want. Those cropped images seem flat. Next, I am using a UH-1 SDHC card "approved" by Nikon rated at 95MB/s. I must wait for minutes for my very fast PC to identify the few new images to transfer from the 32MB card using the Nikon-limited USB2 interface. Till Nikon catches up, I suggest you use smaller SCDC cards. The USB3 interface and UH-1 up to 200 MB/s card interfaces are a waste of $ since Nikon does not support, a long-term slow adoption Nikon issue. Last, I need geocoding, and welcomed the built in GPS. I suspect a firmware issue here. For some odd reason, the metadata has a different GPS format than images overwritten with geodata. That conversion seems off. Hours minutes seconds is not the same as hours and decimal hours lat / long coordinates.

If you live an active lifestyle, need waterproof and drop proof cameras, do not use low light photography, long flash or zoomed photos then this may be for you at a reasonable price versus the 810 series DSL with GPS or Nikon 1 options. If you dive, look at the Nikon 1.


Brother MFC-J870DW Wireless Color Inkjet Printer with Scanner, Copier and Fax (Discontinued by Manufacturer)
Brother MFC-J870DW Wireless Color Inkjet Printer with Scanner, Copier and Fax (Discontinued by Manufacturer)
Offered by abarsh1
Price: $152.39
85 used & new from $99.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Really!, December 4, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Purchased after a long experience with Epson Artisan series printers that met my expectation excepting its seemingly planned obsolescence. My sole requirements for an all-in-one other than reliability and perform as advertised: limited photo and color printing; frequent scan to PDF and limited direct print to CD/DVD surfaces.

Gave away a perfectly good Epson Artisan 837. For a replacement: no new Artisan and confused by new Epson print technology not available for CD/DVD print. So researched for a new brand. Found this Brother printer with some good reviews and reasonable ink cost per page. I purchased it from Amazon and, as usual, it arrived promptly, well packaged.

The installation using a USB connection under Windows 8.1 went well once I figured out I had to install several seemingly separate programs from different vendors. Brother did have available firmware and software updates that installed fine. Not so with the 3rd party software, "expired" and other reasons.

My first scan failed to display on screen and in print a prominent patch of yellow highlighter. My first series of paper prints were significantly faded color that a VIVID setting failed to even change from the default setting. Unlike my Epson and Lexmark experience, I ended up manually adjusting printer device settings to find some improvement. Decided at that point to keep it.

After the return period expired, the Brother Control Center scanner software suddenly stopped working: no device recognized either from the PC side or by manual entry from the printer to the PC. I uninstalled then reinstalled using Brother's latest print and separate scan software and firmware. Print only, no scanner recognized. Uninstalled then reinstalled from the Brother CD only. Same result. I repeated a third time but using a Brother utility to uninstall and not installing third party software I had no use for anyway. Time for help from Brother.

I recall investing an extraordinary effort on Brother's web site to find any way to ask for help. The email help link walks you thru many canned links before finally releasing your email request, no phone support number found either. Mind you that Brother seems to find my inbox almost daily; but, a three day wait for an email help request. The reply was a link telling me to do what I had already advised I had done. I dutifully invested several more hours to perform the tasks exactly as directed. With absolutely no correction to the Control Center failure to talk to the MFCJ870, I had to email to obtain a support phone number and wait a day + for the reply.

It is really sad when we have to demand that a phone support person actually listen to us. "Excuse me; but, I've said I've done that.' Then, the blame game started. Microsoft, HP, my cable, on and on. Finally: 'Brother does not warrant its software. You have to drive your printer to a Brother support center with your PC so they can charge you to look at it." Really!

My analysis: Great hardware. Lousy software that could benefit from some tech reading Microsoft coding tips. Useless third party software. Unacceptably rude phone support.

I can most likely fix this with a full Windows 8.1 install. But, will it last more than six weeks? My solution is to buy a Epson and give this junk away with instructions to trash it if there is a repeat of lost scanner or poor color saturation. Never again!


APC BN1350G Battery Backup/Surge Protector
APC BN1350G Battery Backup/Surge Protector
Offered by thehappystore
Price: $168.88
6 used & new from $141.89

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Newer is not necessarily better, September 12, 2014
The BN1350G is for my home theater and Internet: 550 watt plasma, a Blu-ray, DirecTV receiver, cable modem and small router.

I replaced an older APC 1500W extended run quad battery unit with this. In SW Florida, we are accustomed to afternoon thunderstorms. A recent one demonstrated to me that the old Uninterruptable Power Supply (UPS) was in need of replaceable batteries. Since its purchase maybe 8 years ago, American Power Supply is now part of an international corp., Schneider Electric. The older UPS is no longer supported by warranty or equipment protection. Under new management, new features are evident so I opted for a new UPS rather than buy new lead acid batteries.

To save time, I purchased the BN1350G locally. Same type dual batteries; but, new features and packaging. No need to pop open rigid plastic covers and connect battery terminals to cables with tools. Simply slide open the cover, turn the mated dual batteries upside down and close the cover. Could not be easier. The 1350 adds a LED display in place of the older unit's LED lights. Now I know how much voltage is coming in. A bar graph shows me my load capacity now too. I'm pushing 2 to 4 of 5 bar segments (40% to 80%).

I kept all settings as delivered but you can alter: power saving mode, voltage sensitivity threshold, display illumination period, audible alarm mute. I'm not using PowerChute software either. Our somewhat frequent power outages are very brief except during hurricanes. So, I am little concerned with how long the UPS will run. If the battery load is too high, Plan B is to leave Internet stuff connected only.

I used APC’s American web site to check for more specifications. Like its multi-language product brochures, the web site seems far too complicated trying to deliver all languages and products. Surprise, APC’s web site denies the BN1350G even exists! So is my warranty good APC? Oh, the former multi-thousand dollar equipment warranty seems a thing of the past too. Two years on the unit only. One star off.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Sep 21, 2014 11:36 AM PDT


Samsung Electronics 840 Pro Series 2.5-Inch Solid State Drive, 256GB
Samsung Electronics 840 Pro Series 2.5-Inch Solid State Drive, 256GB
Offered by Blue Truck
Price: $236.23
19 used & new from $89.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars No Brainer, June 13, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I do not know if it is 'confused reviewers' or Amazon; but the 840 Pro series is NOT the 840 EVO series. Different NAND. Very important difference in technology.

That aside, this SSD exceeded my expectations. It replaced an excellent OCZ Vertex II SSD so this not euphoria from a "spinner to SSD" conversion. My 126 GB SSD was nearly full. I was not able to uninstall two "drivers" I had not installed. I was due for a fresh reinstall, done annually. My laptop was not shutting down or restarting due to some gremlin. I am deferring replacement for the Intel 9-series. I am stuck with a "slower" SATA 3Gbs port till then. (we do not see 3GB/s or 6GB/s anyway...)

So, modest expectations; but, a strategy that includes moving the 256 GB 840 Pro to a successor machine.

Before you do anything, install Samsung's "Magician" software to your existing OS. This software makes a great SSD exceptional, whether 840 Pro or the 840 EVO series. This will find your 840, validate it as genuine then allows exceptionally easy firmware update. With that done, I installed a fresh copy of Win 8 then Win 8.1 within 2-3 hours including applications, old files and setup. Install "Magician" and use it to tweak your OS for a SSD, optimize the drive, allow more overflow and use the significant Rapid mode feature and run performance benchmarks.

I sensed the 840 Pro was quicker but here are the metrics using Samsung "Magician". Same laptop with SATA II, same performance tests against the older OCZ Vertex II and later the 840 Pro after installation and usage. Numbers below are a three run average.

Seg. reads: OCZ 280 versus Pro 575
Seq. write: OCZ 234 versus Pro 534
Ran. read: OCZ 30,200 versus 40,116
Ran. write: OCZ 29,818 versus 37,708

Bottom line, fast gets faster. Samsung "Magician" improved the above metrics about 5% in sequential and 10% with sequential. Understand, I would not spend the bucks for this improvement and the new 840 Pro costs about the same as the OCZ Vertex just a few years ago but it twice the capacity. The 840 Pro weighs significantly less than the older SSD and probably consumes less energy too, neither a purchase mover.

There are three negatives. Disappointed that this technology is manufactured in China, not S Korea. Be aware of a jump late 2014 in hard drive speed as the interface moves from SATA to PCIe. "Magician" software will run Rapid mode on only one 840.


Thermaltake MASSIVE V20 Large 200mm Ultra Cooling Fan Notebook Laptop Cooling Pad
Thermaltake MASSIVE V20 Large 200mm Ultra Cooling Fan Notebook Laptop Cooling Pad
Price: $19.99
54 used & new from $19.99

8 of 12 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars V20 vs Cooler Master NotePal U3, June 13, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I had to replace the Cooler Master NotePal U3 after two years of good experience. Its thin wire from the USB adapter to the fans cracked, shorting out the three fans less I wiggle it...tiring.

The V20 has the same type wire but it exits the USB adapter at a satisfactory 45 degree angle, clearing a nearby additional USB port. Both USB adapters allow a second USB device plugged thru its outer end.

The V20 has a large a single large fan whereas the NotePal U3 had three MOVEABLE fans that I placed directly below the 3 primary air intake of my laptop. Neither fan setups at full speed are noisy or distracting. Not scientific, but the air exiting my laptop seems cooler with the Thermaltake V20, the key reason for using a cooler.

The V20 is smaller but supports a laptop almost 16.5" wide; but, not as well as the Cooler Master. It had a rear indentation that accommodated the rear mounted battery of my laptop, hooking it into place. If I place my laptop with its battery hanging off the rear of the V20, the keyboard is flatter but the rear weight bias lets the laptop tip off if not careful. I am deducing that rear battery elevates the laptop base enough to allow the center-concentrated air flow to spread out some. Good since the fan does not accommodate all the air slots of my laptop.

The Cooler Master base is aluminum. The V20 is plastic. The rear curl of the U3 base allowed the edge of my laptop to slide into it when carrying both in a backpack, nicely secured. I would not expect the plastic V20 to travel as well!

Both provide a fan speed variable control with the V20 adding an on/off as well. It is not needed (vary from off to full) and the monotone controls at left rear inconvenient with all the cables there.

Bottom line, I am OK with the V20. I opted for a lower price and smaller size since I plan to replace my laptop soon with a tablet/laptop. The large single fan seems more effective than three moveable; only due to the slight elevation from my battery allowing the air to spread out. Both are quiet. The V20 blue light is not visible, thankfully.


Freedom No-Pull Harness ONLY, Medium 1" Black
Freedom No-Pull Harness ONLY, Medium 1" Black
Offered by Net Pet Shops
Price: $39.99

64 of 69 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ez Walk vs Freedom, January 2, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I've used the Freedom harness daily for 3 months, four walks per day. I had used a Gentle Leader Easy Walk purchased thru Amazon Dec 2010, a standard collar prior to that since his rescue Oct 2009. The Easy Walk remains as a backup since it is fully serviceable. Both have one inch straps and a black / gray color. Both very well made, unlike the pet brand stuff.

I followed the Ez Walk size suggestions but felt it way too big, fully tightened yet my dog could back out. Its reflective feature useless on a long hair dog. The reflective leash was rough so I stopped using it after a few days. So, I was motivated to find a better one.

Biscuit is a 55 pound dominate male Australian Shepherd. As a herding breed, he is all about herding cats, squirrels, bikes, bikers, diesel trucks or any noisy and moving thing. Otherwise, he likes to lead the way at my pace always either at leash length ahead of me or at my side when exercised. A speeding delivery truck will not stop him from charging right at it so the leash is for that, not to keep him submissively at my side. Not into that...

Both are a one inch width I feel is important due to his strength and the Freedom medium and larger are that width. The Freedom webbing is thicker than the Ez Walk. Both have a front chest loop that does flip the dog around to stop the pull or charging without inflicting pain. The Ez Walk ring of that loop is sewn in place so it must rotate the entire loop, pulling hair with it. The chest and back loops of the Freedom are open so the ring moves easily.

The Ez Walk has two adjustable loops for chest strap length adjustment. Neither loop retained its setting so constant tightening, No so with the Freedom that has the same type loop adjustment. The Freedom strap is thicker and there is a plastic guide that clamps the straps together prior to the loop adjuster. Since I measured his chest, I received the correct size requiring very little one-time adjustment.

The Freedom has two clips while the Ez Walk has one chest clip. After using the Ez Walk, Biscuit does not now need the chest clip. I use the shoulder clip except when I can anticipate his likely lunge then use both chest and shoulder clips to the single now shorter leash. The side to side shoulder clip pressure seems adequate to communicate to him which direction we are going. When he does lunge, the tight one inch strap deters him anyway. The complexity of the Freedom is a consequence of the double clip that is nice to have but over time, less needed. When not using both clips, I open the free clip and run the leash portion just below the handle to keep it from flopping around. That secured clip is also useful for used poop bags!

I do have two minor observations not worth a star for this Freedom review. While the black lead with gray handle is 'spiffy', I'd prefer to black handle that does not show the dirt. Yes, you will feel intimidated with so many clips, loops etc. In short order, the Freedom sort of retains his shape. I align it by putting the two shoulder clips left & right opposite with the long strap with belly clips out front. Biscuit knows it goes over his head and actually helps slip it on with his eyes closed!

If you experience a dog backing out, I suggest, from my experience, that you are not tightening the chest strap enough. The Ex Walk would not retain that tightening but the Freedom does. I hope that helps!
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Sep 16, 2015 7:31 AM PDT


Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5