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Customer Reviews: 9
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Helpful Votes: 142




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Sean Chao "Molukai" RSS Feed (Columbus, Ohio USA)
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TomTom XXL 540TM 5-Inch Widescreen Portable GPS Navigator (Lifetime Traffic & Maps Edition)(Discontinued by Manufacturer)
TomTom XXL 540TM 5-Inch Widescreen Portable GPS Navigator (Lifetime Traffic & Maps Edition)(Discontinued by Manufacturer)
Offered by Speedy Mobile
Price: $159.99
10 used & new from $71.20

92 of 99 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Total Let-Down, November 19, 2010
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I would like to premise this with saying that I really wanted to like this GPS. Doing extensive research beforehand, I felt that for the value the Tomtom XXL 540 really can't be beat at the time of purchase. Unfortunately, I was let down to such an extent that I don't believe words can fully articulate how disappointed I am with this product.

So what's wrong with it? Well one thing I noticed during my research is that a number of owners of this product had issues with the updating of the software. Already knowing that Murphy's Law is my best friend, when I received my product I immediately took it out of the box and placed it next to my computer. I then proceeded to call Tomtom's customer service line (contrary to what some customers have said, the hotline is clearly and easily printed right at the first insert in the box) so that I can have one of their professionals guide me through the entire setup process just so I would not have to deal with a headache of a problem.

Here comes the ONLY GOOD THING ABOUT TOMTOM: Their customer service line is really quick. I mean, I have called them maybe 10 times and the longest hold time was 3 minutes.

Okay, so I go through the updating process while holding the rep's hand. A little while later, everything is downloaded and I am glad. Exceeept, no, something is off. During my drive, it became quickly apparent that my GPS is a bit slow on the response time. And by slow, this is a severe understatement. The lag was inconsistent, but often it would be about 5-6 seconds in delay. A turn two blocks away changes to route being recalculated because I unknowingly missed it. I head home and call Tomtom support once again.

So yes, as I said earlier Tomtom support is great... except it seems that the only courses that they have trained in is customer service, while totally omitting any technical engineering courses/product familiarization courses. Although they may all sound like they are blissfully happy to serve you, you will quickly find out that ALL that they know is to read from a long card that outlines a specific order in how to go about the troubleshoot process. They don't even attempt to think for themselves nor do they have any technical knowledge to even do so (i.e. one rep asked me what my internet connection was when I informed her that the transferring of the files from my computer to my GPS device was being abnormally slow).

Okay. So troubleshooting goes slow. Multiple steps, with each step taking a while because it involves deleting files, updating files, installing files. Every solution failed. By the time we reach the last troubleshoot step (formatting and reinstalling every file into the GPS) I've spent a collective total of 3 hours with Tomtom reps. The rep that was unfortunate enough to be talking to me by this point placed me on hold as she requested approval to format my drive. I was told the approval was necessary because it was the last troubleshoot step, which if it fails would result in a requirement to have the product replaced. Apparently Tomtom is apprehensive of going through exchange processes, and needs to make sure that there is no other option before doing so.

So after the format/reinstall process, I was surprised to find out that my Tomtom no longer lagged!! Well, it has a 0.2 second lag time, which according to Tomtom is acceptable in range (my 3 year old Navigon - ironically a company that pulled out of the US market - has superior reaction times to this GPS). But whereas my original problem was fixed, several problems took its place:
(1) constant blank white or yellow/green screens
(2) boot-ups would be frozen 3 out of 4 times
(3) gps would auto shut-off while plugged in during an active trip
(4) file access error message would continuously pop up on the top right
(5) a reboot from a frozen screen would result in me having to go through the entire initialization process again

After spending even more time on the phone trying to get the above issues fixed, the representative asked to allow them to exchange the product. Of course, it would be a 2 week turnaround. That is why everyone should always purchase from Amazon - they are fast at shipping replacements for defective products (usually give a 1 day shipping priority) and would ship a replacement before you even send in the defective product. Obviously I opted to go through Amazon over Tomtom themselves.

One of the Tomtom representatives told me that less than 7% of Tomtom customers report a lag issue. Another told me that less than 1% encounter extensive GPS functional meltdowns such as myself. Although I do consider myself one of the unluckiest people alive, please be aware that this issue still may also happen to you.
Comment Comments (6) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Dec 28, 2010 7:29 AM PST


Parker Brothers Jenga Max
Parker Brothers Jenga Max
Offered by Triple J Online Marketplace
Price: $8.75
51 used & new from $6.00

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Poorly Executed., December 29, 2009
= Durability:3.0 out of 5 stars  = Fun:1.0 out of 5 stars  = Educational:2.0 out of 5 stars 
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Parker Brothers Jenga Max (Toy)
The Good:
- It is an interesting concept in that you get to build potentially different designs
- Magnets are involved (it acts as the 'adhesive' that drops all the pieces when under too much weight posturing on any given side), those are always entertaining to the children
- The pieces are colorful
- The base is fairly well-made despite being a simple plastic construction

The Bad:
- The pieces that attach to each other to develop the designs do not connect poorly, in that the connectors are too wide. More often than not you will find that the pieces will fall apart just after a few turns.
- Due to the poor connectors on the pieces, if there is any length whatsoever (i.e. 3 linkages or more), the line will be highly susceptible to swaying, and oftentimes it will sway onto a piece of the base structure and rest upon, which is against the game's rules.
- Generally speaking, it fails to hold the attention of the young, and frustrates the old as the pieces keep falling off due to the poor plastic connector build rather than the 'fun way' of having the magnet dropping.

The Ugly:
- This game is a shining example of poor execution of a concept that may have otherwise resulted in a great family game.
- This has been one of the poorest games made by Parker Brothers, hands down. It is not a functioning game by any standard, and as such should not even be released in its current form.
- I personally could not recommend this game to any other individual, not even as a giveaway.


Wow!Pad 57LT035 Ohio State Collegiate Logo Laptop Mouse Pad
Wow!Pad 57LT035 Ohio State Collegiate Logo Laptop Mouse Pad

1.0 out of 5 stars Unethical Advertised Product, December 16, 2009
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is made as of 12/16/2009 at the price of [...]. I hope that the problems outlined in this helps you, the customer, as well as encourages the merchant to improve on its product description.

For the price, most people in the market for a laptop pad and happen to be fans of the displayed college/university logo would likely jump on this deal. Of course, when we look in-depth as to what we are buying, red flags are raised.

Size Discrepency: The only mention whatsoever of the size of the mousepad is that it is labeled in the title as a 'laptop pad'. Most would not even notice this fact, and would primarily base their perception on the single photograph, which to most may appear to be pretty big, if not standard. Even if one was to understand that this is a smaller pad being classified as such, we still have rational expectations that it is large enough to move the mouse about freely. In reality, it is much smaller than a legal sized piece of paper folded in half. Even when using a laptop-specific mouse, which is characterized by a very small form factor, you will regularly find yourself frustrated at going off the pad.

Quality: The brief description on the Amazon website gives the appearance that it is fantastic in terms of build, with lines such as having the "...best surface tracking technology available..." and that it features "...a super thin profile...non-slip backing". In harsh reality: Its surface is no superior for tracking purposes than a piece of white paper - I have tested it with such. It is inferior to a 6 dollar generic mousepad you can buy at a local electronics store. The actual materials itself is not far removed from a piece of paper that has simply been laminated. Furthermore, the entire statement that it does not slip is entirely false. Due to its flimsy construction, thinness, and light weight, you will notice slippage over extended usage. I cannot comment as to the claim that the mousepad has antimicrobial treatment, as I lack the tools and the desire to test this.

The Only Observable Positive: It is so small and thin that you can slip it inside the laptop when it is in the 'closed' position (between the keyboard and the screen). But I have only tested this on a 15 inch laptop, I do not know how well it would fit with a netbook.

Final Verdict: Even with what appears to be a bottom-line going price for a mousepad at 3-4 bucks, this is not the case for this product. You can achieve similar results by just cutting out a piece of cardboard displaying your college logo and then laminating it for less. The product itself would be on par with what would be sold at a dollar store, if it were not for the collegiate logo placed on it.

After using the mousepad only once to write this review, I have since considered turning it into a STICKER (yes, it is so small it would be better as a posted sticker), but it looks too awkward to be one. I have instead given it away, but the individual I have given it to does not use it. Unless you are a businessman that spends the majority of your time with limited workable space, such as during a business flight, this mousepad is NOT REASONABLY FUNCTIONAL FOR ITS INTENDED PURPOSE.

I do not recommend even the most die-hard of fans to purchase this product. Even my 7 years at OSU does not allow me to overlook the critical flaws of this product, and the fact that these flaws were not represented to me when I purchased it is infurating.


Oster 5712 Electronic 2-Tier 6.1-Quart Food Steamer, White
Oster 5712 Electronic 2-Tier 6.1-Quart Food Steamer, White
Price: $39.99
17 used & new from $29.95

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Pretty Good for the Price!, January 9, 2009
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This product does its function pretty well, although it takes a while to get to the optimal heating temperature, and as such food being prepared takes a bit longer than anticipated. The thing I like the most is that the product is actually quite large, much larger than it appears in the pictures you see on Amazon. As such, you can fit quite a big feast worth of steamed food, usually ready in less than 30 minutes.

The biggest gripe of this product is that the support manual only provides recommended time setting support for a limited number of foods, and no support at all for East Asian cuisine (which heavily makes use of steaming systems).


Ooma Core VoIP Phone System
Ooma Core VoIP Phone System
Offered by fatherandsonbooks
Price: $255.00
8 used & new from $92.89

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best VoIP System in America, January 9, 2009
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
The title says it all. This is the absolute best VoIP phone system in the United States, for the simple fact that you have stunning clarity in all of your calls, excellent support, ability to continue using it after moving residences, and ZERO monetary cost upkeep - FOR LIFE.

The worst thing about Ooma is their corny advertisements. If you can get past the cheesiness of their commercials stating how the phone companies are out to sap your hard-earned money till you die, purchasing this product will leave you feeling satisfied and kicking yourself for not doing it sooner. Excellent product, and even more excellent business plan.


Victorinox Swiss Army Champion Plus Pocket Knife
Victorinox Swiss Army Champion Plus Pocket Knife
Price: $77.40
6 used & new from $40.00

5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful Product, January 9, 2009
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
What can I say? Anything with the Swiss label from my personal experience to date has been nothing but the equivalent of the highest standards in excellence. Everything you expect in terms of function and efficiency, and then some. I purchased this version instead of the regular Champion because I was afraid that this would already be too bulky for my personal taste; I am glad that I was wrong. Not only is this product so lightweight that I would not worry the link breaking if I hung it on a lanyard chain, it also feels natural/is easily gripped by my hands. Solidly built, the tools (asides from the plastic magnifying class) looks highly resistant from breakage/wear.

The only thing I would have to say is that the primary knife, although nice, is not as long as sharp as I would have hoped. It is more ready to cut a stick of butter than to cut off a chunk of meat when you're out in the woods.


Tell It Like it Is! (Text with 2 DVD's): Natural Chinese for Advanced Learners (Yale Language Series)
Tell It Like it Is! (Text with 2 DVD's): Natural Chinese for Advanced Learners (Yale Language Series)
by Jianqi Wang
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $104.50
26 used & new from $43.84

3 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Absolute Must for the Advanced Chinese Learner, January 9, 2009
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Simply put, this is an excellent result of collaboration among the best the Ohio State University has to offer. Professor Wang's work is not only useful for the advanced student in the Chinese language, but he also presents a window into the mentality of Chinese cultural thought. We can see this from observing such topics as discussions on raising children; whether or not to spank them as part of the learning process.


Panasonic KX-TG9344T Dect 6.0 Expandable Digital Cordless Phone with Answering System, Metallic Black, 4 Handsets
Panasonic KX-TG9344T Dect 6.0 Expandable Digital Cordless Phone with Answering System, Metallic Black, 4 Handsets
Offered by PixLaser
Price: $249.99
8 used & new from $59.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Best Yet..., January 9, 2009
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Everything you can hope for in a cordless set, and then some. Ultra-clear communications, no interference with regular household transmissions, loud speakerphone capabilities, 50 name phone directory that is auto-recognized by all phones after input into one, buttons light up in the dark, caller ID voice pronouncer, extremely long range, and so much more.

It works so well for the price that if you are in the market for purchasing a home phone, you should look no where else than here.

My ONLY gripes which warrant me giving the product 4 stars rather than 5 are as follows:
- The voice caller ID, although nifty, is quite primitive and more often than not pronounces names of incoming callers in not just a mechanical/unnatural way but with entirely wrong pronounciation altogether. Although I have not heavily inspected a way to shut this feature off, it does not appear to have one.
- There aren't as many ring tones as one would like for the price they pay for such a product, and all the ring tones that are included are fairly annoying/plain.


SwissGear Computer Laptop Backpack SA9998 (Black) Fits Most 15 Inch Laptops
SwissGear Computer Laptop Backpack SA9998 (Black) Fits Most 15 Inch Laptops
Price: $53.70
3 used & new from $53.70

38 of 43 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Laptop Backpack Thus Far..., January 9, 2009
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
For the price, this laptop cannot be beat. Sure, I wouldn't purchase this laptop backpack if it were being sold for what it was originally listed at ($170 USD), but that was BEFORE I had a chance to use it.

Today, I would purchase this backpack whether it is around the 30 dollar mark or the past 100 dollar mark. Why? If fits very snugly with a conventional laptop or ultraportable (I have not yet tested it on a 17 inch widescreen yet, however), all the while being able to put in a number of items including bulky items such as document folders and even multiple textbooks. It does this all without putting too much strain on the laptop, and is easily adjustable to be set correctly on the user's back without harming alignment due to pressure at the wrong point.

The easily accessible cell phone holder located on the backpack right strap is just gravy on top of all of the exquisite features offered by this fine product.

Buy this product. You will NOT be disappointed.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jan 28, 2009 5:38 PM PST


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