Profile for Brian R. > Reviews

Browse

Brian R.'s Profile

Customer Reviews: 380
Top Reviewer Ranking: 737
Helpful Votes: 2694




Community Features
Review Discussion Boards
Top Reviewers

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

Reviews Written by
Brian R. RSS Feed (United States)
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)    (VINE VOICE)   

Show:  
Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11-20
pixel
simplehuman Rechargeable Bath Sensor Pump - White, 8 fl. oz.
simplehuman Rechargeable Bath Sensor Pump - White, 8 fl. oz.
Price: $59.99
3 used & new from $59.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Works flawlessly, August 18, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
This pump works flawlessly. I started off with the trial package of soap included in the box. We didn't like the smell of it at all, but I at least wanted to try the "recommended" soap in it. Once that was out, I switched to the cheap Dial softsoap. The Simplehuman soap was a gel type soap whereas the Dial was more of the creamy softsoap type. This pump handles both quite well.

It dispenses a consistent amount of soap every time, though you might need to fiddle with the dispensing amount buttons when switching soaps. I also liked that it uses pretty much all the soap you put in it so you're not left with a bunch of unused soap. The creamier Dial soap does tend to have a little bit of a tail when dispensing, but nothing that causes a mess. Once dispensed, the rubber nozzle keeps any drips from occurring. It doesn't double-dispense, so it won't keep pumping just because you hold your hand under it. You have to remove it then put it back under. The range of the sensor is also accurate, so it only dispenses when your fingers are in the right spot.

I haven't had any problems with it getting wet or misbehaving. With 3 kids in the house, they give it a workout and they like using it as well. About the only types of soap I'd stay away from is the foaming soaps and the ones with the scrubber beads in them. Otherwise, gel and lotion soaps should work fine.


Linksys AC1200 Wi-Fi Wireless Dual-Band+ Router with Gigabit & USB Ports, Smart Wi-Fi App Enabled to Control Your Network from Anywhere (EA6350)
Linksys AC1200 Wi-Fi Wireless Dual-Band+ Router with Gigabit & USB Ports, Smart Wi-Fi App Enabled to Control Your Network from Anywhere (EA6350)
Price: $129.99
5 used & new from $129.95

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A good router with a nice admin interface, but has some signal problems for my setup., August 15, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I haven't found that this router is all it's cracked up to be. I was expecting to get stronger signal and possibly better range compared to my previous router - the TP-LINK TL-WDR3600 Wireless N600 Dual Band Router, Gigabit, 2.4GHz 300Mbps+5Ghz 300Mbps, 2 USB port, Wireless On/Off Switch.

I have my router in the basement in one corner of the house, which presents problems for getting a good signal throughout the whole house. My bedroom is on the second floor, directly above the router. With the Linksys, it gets a much worse signal and is very spotty from my bedroom. In other areas of the house it seems to be the same or a bit better. That said, it seems to take a longer time to negotiate traffic through the Linksys.

What I do like about the Linksys is that the setup was really easy. It also allows you to name both the 2.4GHz and 5GHz bands separately and still have a third SSID for a guest network on the 2.4GHz band. This is something that I wasn't able to do on the TP-link. The Linksys was a bit tricky to set the default IP range for it (192.168.0.1 vs. 192.168.1.1) but it was doable. I haven't tried out the App yet, nor do I mess with parental controls. Typically, you have to restrict individual devices manually, which to me isn't a whole lot of help. The Linksys does have a nicer admin interface, though.

So, compared to the TP-Link, its really a draw in terms of performance, the Linksys has a nicer admin interface, while the TP-Link has some nice features like the wireless on/off button and a second USB port.


Five Star Locker Shelf Extender, Purple (72244)
Five Star Locker Shelf Extender, Purple (72244)
Price: $13.77
2 used & new from $13.77

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A little lighter duty than I would have liked., August 13, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
The shelf portion of this extender is only reinforced with some sort of thick cardboard, so I wouldn't plan on this being able to support heavy items like books. The hooks are lighter weight than standard locker hooks, and you'll need to ensure your child's locker has hooks on each sidewall in order to hang this. Lastly, the shelf part is actually black, not purple, which I didn't notice in the picture until I looked a bit more closely.


Five Star Stackable Locker Shelf, Purple (72228)
Five Star Stackable Locker Shelf, Purple (72228)
Price: $15.01
2 used & new from $15.01

5.0 out of 5 stars Everything as expected., August 13, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Very sturdy and simple to put together, the shelf does its job with ease. While the height can't be adjusted, it is made to allow more than one to stack on top of each other. It also has small rubber pads for the bottom in case you're using this on something that wouldn't want to get scratched.


Motorola FOCUS66 Wi-Fi HD Home Monitoring Camera
Motorola FOCUS66 Wi-Fi HD Home Monitoring Camera
Price: $99.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Easy setup, decent quality, no extra fees = 5 stars, August 13, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
The Motorola Focus66 camera delivers on what it promises. This might not be the end-all of home monitoring, but it's inexpensive, easy to set up and it works.

I use an iPhone and the pairing process to the phone then to my wifi only took a few minutes. The app lead you through the steps very clearly. You do have to create a Hubble account, as this is the cloud service that provides all the hosting. This can also be done quickly and directly from the app.

Camera quality is good. While it may be 720p, I wouldn't call it HD quality. It's compressed to save bandwidth, yet it is much better than QVGA or other video modes that baby monitors would use. Speaking of those, I wouldn't use this as a baby monitor, nor a full-time surveillance system. It's best used in low-traffic areas or as a camera that you might want to peek in on from time to time. Also, the instructions say there is a 4-camera limit for this system.

If you turn off the motion/sound sensing, then no video is recorded or stored in your account. You will still have access to the live feed on-demand, and I found it quick to connect to and pretty reliable. On iOS, you can take a snapshot of the video to your phone while viewing live video, but you cannot trigger the video to record either to the server or to your phone. Therefore, if you were viewing the live feed, you can't decide to start recording on the fly. It'll only record if you have the motion sensing turned on. You can adjust the sensitivity of the sound/motion/temperature presets.

Motorola also makes a pan-tilt-zoom model, so I don't see the lack of those features on this camera as something to whine about. This is a fixed camera only. There is no battery backup or option to record to local storage. That said, Motorola has updated the firmware at least twice since I've received the unit, which is before its official public release.

The only quibble I have with it is that even if I have headphones plugged into my phone, the sound starts playing on the speakerphone. If I then unplug and plug in the headphones, it'll then play through them.

For a free service with no ongoing fees, this is a pretty good option to consider if you need to remotely monitor your house.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Aug 14, 2014 3:38 PM PDT


Five Star Locker Mirror, 5.5 x 5.5 Inches, Berry Pink/Purple (72562)
Five Star Locker Mirror, 5.5 x 5.5 Inches, Berry Pink/Purple (72562)
Price: $15.69
2 used & new from $14.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A small but functional mirror, August 7, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
While this is smaller than I anticipated, it is still quite functional. 5.5x5.5" means you won't be using this to do your hair, but it's fine for a quick look. It'll fit just fine in my daughter's locker and she's really happy with it. The magnet is almost the size of the whole mirror, so it definitely holds well, even if a piece of paper or picture is tucked behind it. The matching push pins are a nice touch and will come in handy for personalizing it. The color received seems true to the picture here as well.


AT-A-GLANCE 2014-2015 Academic Year Pop Robin Weekly and Monthly Planner, 5.50 x 8.50 Inch Page Size (601-200A)
AT-A-GLANCE 2014-2015 Academic Year Pop Robin Weekly and Monthly Planner, 5.50 x 8.50 Inch Page Size (601-200A)
Price: $22.99
3 used & new from $19.57

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars More of a calendar than a planner, August 6, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
The construction and materials of this planner are very nice. The cover is embossed with the design, and it has that velvety-smooth feel to it similar to imitation leather.

Inside, the planner is very, very basic. The monthly views leave only about 1" for each day, with about 6 lines for each as well. You'll have to write small to fit anything on one line here. The weekly view is a bit better, with two pages dedicated to each week, so the daily area is a full page width. Unfotunately they chose to cut off about 1/3 of the second page's area to place the week's title. There's no extra pages, for example one for writing down class schedules to refer to, which would have been nice given the lack of space in general. There's no dedicated space for To-Do items, general notes, etc. You only get space tied to specific days, and not much space at that.


Epson WorkForce WF-3620 Wireless and WiFi Direct All-in-One Color Inkjet Printer, Copier, Scanner, 2-Sided Auto Duplex, ADF, Fax. Prints from Tablet/Smartphone. AirPrint Compatible. (C11CD19201)
Epson WorkForce WF-3620 Wireless and WiFi Direct All-in-One Color Inkjet Printer, Copier, Scanner, 2-Sided Auto Duplex, ADF, Fax. Prints from Tablet/Smartphone. AirPrint Compatible. (C11CD19201)
Price: $129.99
18 used & new from $129.99

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Epson got it right!, August 5, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I've had several other "touchscreen" epson printers, and this one has a real touch screen, not just touch-sensitive buttons. That said, they still need to do some work on usability, but overall, this printer functions well and lives up to its promises. It wasn't enough to take this printer down a star. For either home or home office use, this will fit just about every need. The duplex scanning and printing is a real timesaver and jam free. I also like that while this is fairly compact, you still get an actual closed paper tray.

The print quality for text and graphics is excellent, even on the cheap hammermill & Staples brand paper we keep around the house. Setup and calibration was very easy and pretty much automated, once you remove about 50 pieces of tape and plastic to unpack it. Photos are ok, given that this is a 4-ink printer.

The menu options and scanning are really easy to use and I like how easy it is to wirelessy scan to pdf and have it saved to my pc. It's also usefull and easy to set up with Google cloud print. My daughter has a Chromebook, and this makes printing from it a snap. Although I've installed the iOS app, I don't use it often.


Panasonic Energy Corporation LR6XP/8B Platinum Power AA Alkaline Batteries, 8 Pack
Panasonic Energy Corporation LR6XP/8B Platinum Power AA Alkaline Batteries, 8 Pack
Price: $5.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent, high quality batteries, August 3, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Excellent, high quality batteries. These do really well in my flash and in my kids' toys. Without trying to make them explode on purpose, I expect they'll hold up much better than the store brands or other normal batteries.


The Game Of Life Electronic Banking Game
The Game Of Life Electronic Banking Game
Price: $18.74
10 used & new from $14.29

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Don't get nostalgic - this is a completely different game than the original., July 31, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Each iteration of Life is different. We have the 40th Anniversary Edition, which keeps a lot of the Nostalgia of the original, but was updated with more modern events. The electronic banking version loses pretty much all ties with the original, and for this reason, I don't like it nearly as much.

Differences from classic Life:
- Only 4 players. Gone are the multitude of cars and ability for a family of 5 like ours to all play together
- No building of the board. There's no buildings or bridges to place - just the spinner.
- No insurance, loans, stocks or Life tiles.
- No decision at the end of the game for whether to try for Millionaire Acres or Shady Estates

Differences in gameplay:
- Jobs have no strategy. The difference in salaries has absolutely no effect on how much money you can amass. More on that later...
- The Action cards replace the events that occur on each space. Action cards are basically pretty dumb. They tell you to do certain things which determine how much bonus money you receive. At the end of the game, each one is worth $100,000. This makes your salary pretty much irrelevant.
- You never have to buy a house. If you land on a house space, you can choose to buy or sell. At the end of the game, you sell all houses back for money, and you either make a small or large amount depending on a random spin.
- Babies have no negative cash impact, and each is worth a bonus at the end of the game.
- Very few action cards have negative cash impact.

Basically the game is really just a matter of collecting action cards, babies and houses. Since every action card you collect is worth nearly as much as the highest salary, you are making far more money from them vs. paydays. Gone are any Life events, as you can pretty much skip buying a house, having babies, etc. There's very few bad Action cards or spots on the board. Also, many action cards have you spin against one other player to see which one wins money. So, two people can always choose eachother and they will get a disproportionate amount of money compared to the third person.

The electronic banking unit is ok, but since you're really not exchanging money or paying money out very often, it's a glorified calculator. It actually slows down gameplay in many cases. The game also has spots where you can increase or decrease your salary. You program the salary into the unit, but there's no way to actually check your salary unless you're adding it to your account. When you land on a space that increases or decreases a salary, it assumes you remember what it is (which might be different than the amount on your Career card). Careers have very little deviation in salary, but going to college costs $200,000. While there are a few extra spaces where you can get an extra Action card or two, it really doesn't make a big difference if you go to college or not.

In all, this is a completely revamped game, that has virtually nothing in common with the original.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Aug 7, 2014 2:14 PM PDT


Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11-20