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Customer Reviews: 7
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Michael Consuegra RSS Feed (Miami, Florida)

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Pooldevil Pro Automatic Pool Surface Cleaner
Pooldevil Pro Automatic Pool Surface Cleaner
Offered by Old Dominion Shoppe
Price: $49.99
2 used & new from $49.99

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Works BETTER than advertised, June 30, 2013
I have a screened-in patio and although it is great at keeping out most bugs, there are always little bugs that are small enough to pass through the holes in the screen. Likewise spiders that make webs and catch bugs in the screen area over the pool sometimes contribute to very small bugs falling into the pool and floating at the top.

My pole skimmer never catches these because they can go through the holes like they do in the screen, so looking for a better skimmer I found the Pool Devil Pro. I had tried a few other things and it was cheap enough that if it didn't work I wasn't going to be too bothered about it...BOY DID IT EVER WORK. You wouldn't think that a device with such a small opening into its net could work so well. Depending on the size of your pool (and how many hours a day you run the pump) it takes about 1-4 days for it to cycle all the surface water of your pool through the net, but once it does you will see the results inside the net. In my case within two days the net was PACKED with tiny bugs and debris and the pool itself was SPARKLING! After that it just maintains the pool so you never really get that huge build up of floating debris.

This completely eliminates the time I use to waste having to skim my pool for at least 30 minutes before I want to use it. I just can't believe such a simple device has made my life this much easier and saved me so much time. There are some who will think that this is a fake review, but trust me when I tell you my results are real. My name is Mike Consuegra and I live in Miami, FL. I have been an amazon prime member for more than two years and an amazon customer longer than that. If anyone has any doubts please contact me at mike.consuegra@mvsdconsulting.com

If you have a pool and ESPECIALLY if you have a screened in patio, this little gadget will be your best friend....No doubt about it.


Sonos S5 Zone Player 2-Pack and BR100 Zone Bridge Bundle (Black)
Sonos S5 Zone Player 2-Pack and BR100 Zone Bridge Bundle (Black)

5.0 out of 5 stars This is what it looks like when a company does what it advertises, August 23, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
When I came upon Sonos I was looking for a way to pipe music to different corners of my home. I don't need it in the bedroom. I don't need it in my office as I have a computer there, but I did need it in the spaces around my home where I entertain: The family room, the living room, the dining room and the patio.

When I first saw the introductory video at Sonos.com I rolled my eyes and remembered that the BigMac I get at the drive thru NEVER looks like the one in the commercials. Nonetheless I decided that it was a good concept and that I could always return it if I didn't perform as advertised. So I bought two S5 players (now renamed PLAY:5 player). I got a zone bridge in the deal, but since my place had CAT5 in the walls at that point I didn't even unbox the ZoneBridge.

My immediate impression of the Sonos system was "WOW!" Not only was it AS EASY as the ad said it would be to hook up, but the sound emanating from that little box was SPECTACULAR! It reminded me of how I felt the first time I saw the Bose Wave player. It literally blew me away that such a small device could produce such rich sound. Once I had both of them hooked up I was doubly impressed simply because the synchronization of the music between the two players was flawless and it kicked up the sound another notch. I was so impressed I bought a ZP120 (now renamed CONNECT:AMP) to power my outdoor speakers. Again I was thoroughly impressed.

Up to now though I have only described my experience with the sound, but what finished me off was the interface on my iPad, phone and even computer. Everything is so intuitive you would think it was built by Apple (no offense to Sonos, but Apple is the standard for user friendliness).

At one point I moved into a place with no in-wall wiring so I cracked open the zone bridge. I was ready to lower my standards because, well, I was now using another component that would potentially add latency and maybe even degrade sound quality through wireless transmission. BOY WAS I SHOCKED! It sounds exactly the way it did when wired in.

There are really only three issues I have with the Sonos system. I can't say that they are negative for reasons that will become clear, so I will just rate them as "NEUTRAL".

1. The price. At 4 bills for each of the Zone players and 5 bills for the Zone Amp the system tends to get very expensive even if you just want to hook up a few rooms. I'm already $1,300 in with just three components. I'm not rating this aspect as negative because the sound quality, build quality and GUI is just SO GOOD that it proves the old saying "You get what you pay for". The only thing I can say to Sonos is that at this price point adoption of the system by the mainstream consumer will be slower than many other systems. On the positive side of this is the fact that since many people are not familiar with this system it becomes a conversation piece whenever I get visitors that don't know I have it.

2. The subscription services. The Sonos interface allows you to stream from many different sources. Not all of them are free. Pandora free is great and it is by far the flagship service on this system, but if you want to actually pick the songs you want to hear then you have to opt for the service formerly known as Napster (now renamed Rhapsody) For about $50/year you can choose from (what seems to me) an unending collection of songs, artists and albums that you can play over and over or in any particular sequence. My daughter has used this particular aspect to thoroughly wear out Gotye's "Somebody that I Used to Know". I can't blame Sonos for this because they do not own those services so they can't give them away for free, but at the equipment's price point it would be nice of them to include a 6-month or 12-month subscription with the purchase.

3. This particular one really is an issue, but I can't say it's Sonos' fault because I can't prove it. From time to time my controllers will lose connection to the system and it will just sit there and spin trying to connect to the primary component. This has happened on my iPad, computer and phone and the only solution is to do a "Reset" of the controller. This involves having to physically visit one of the components and touch some buttons. It's not a deal-breaker but it is annoying. I have no way of knowing if this is a Sonos issue or a connection issue with the device acting as the controller at that point (iPad, phone, etc), but I have noticed that when this happens the devices are still able to browse my wifi network as well as go online so WiFi connection does not appear to be the root cause.

Overall though I have not seen anything better than this to distribute music to multiple rooms. Even with the three issues I mentioned above if I had to rate Sonos on a percentage scale it would be a 97%. It is just that good. My next purchase is the subwoofer as I could really use it outside when having a party. Once I get that I will let you all know if it was worth the $700 price tag.


Sanyo Eneloop AA NiMH Pre-Charged Rechargeable Batteries - 4 Pack (Discontinued by Manufacturer)
Sanyo Eneloop AA NiMH Pre-Charged Rechargeable Batteries - 4 Pack (Discontinued by Manufacturer)
Offered by CONTINENTALSUPPLY
Price: $8.45
4 used & new from $8.45

1.0 out of 5 stars poor duration between charges, July 23, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I bought a logitech wireless keyboard/mouse that included these batteries, so when the battery in the mouse would die within just a few hours I figured the battery was bad and decided to buy some replacements.

I have to say I'm very disappointed with how short a time you can go between recharging it. If I would leave the mouse on for several days (even without using it) I would have to recharge it as soon as I touched it again. I just gave up and put in a standard Energizer AA in the mouse and have been happier with the duration even if I DO have to change it out from time to time.

Hey at least now I just swap out the batt and remain wireless rather than having to be tethered for a couple of hours while it charges.

Can't really recommend these.


Boston Acoustics TVee Model 30 Sound System with Sleek Sound Bar and Wireless Subwoofer (Black) (Discontinued by Manufacturer)
Boston Acoustics TVee Model 30 Sound System with Sleek Sound Bar and Wireless Subwoofer (Black) (Discontinued by Manufacturer)
10 used & new from $249.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Please include a remote with this thing, July 23, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I was looking to get great sound in my family room without all the wires and the speakers all over the place. The TVee Model 30 came highly reviewed so I bought it. To be clear: I knew about the remote control issue before I bought it.

Remote Control Issue:
=====================
The TVee Model 30 doesn't come with a remote but you can program your TV/Sat/Cable Universal remote to control it. This does work and the soundbar sounds absolutely spectacular while watching movies and even the bass from that 7" sub sounds great while listening to music via Bluetooth from my iPad/Galaxy SIII; however, until you've dealt with the EXTREMELY limited IR range for a while when trying to raise or lower the volume you can't really imagine that it will be this annoying. It IS VERY annoying!

The way it works out is: Unless you are between 3-5 feet away and pointing the remote level and directly in front of the soundbar you may/will not get it to respond to your remote. I tried various things to try to increase the IR range, but eventually just gave up and drilled a hole in the soundbar's metal grill right where the IR receiver is in order to get better reception.

While still not as responsive as when the whole grill is off, this has improved the range of the IR signals dramatically. I can't tell someone not to buy it because frankly it blows away every other soundbar I've played with that is +/- $200 of the TVee M30, but definitely consider this issue before you buy because you are going to have to deal with it one way or another.


Bose® QuietComfort® 15 Acoustic Noise Cancelling® Headphones(Old Version)
Bose® QuietComfort® 15 Acoustic Noise Cancelling® Headphones(Old Version)
11 used & new from $195.00

5.0 out of 5 stars Wish they were rechargeable and bluetooth, July 23, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I'm not a person that thinks Bose can do no wrong. I prefer function over brand name/loyalty so when I say that these QC-15s are fantastic...I mean it! I've had them for over a year and I can say without a doubt that the money spent was well worth it. I travel quite a bit for work and the sense of quiet I get on a plane is not to be believed. I'm sure there are earphones that have better sound reproduction, but there are none that have this incredible combination of great sound AND noise reduction (which really enhances the sound that you ARE getting).

The only complaints I have on these are:

1. I wish they were rechargeable.
2. I wish they had Bluetooth connectivity
3. And that they at least allowed you to listen to music (if not the noise cancelling part) without a battery because you will invariably run out in the most inopportune moments.

You really have to plan ahead and carry a spare battery because if you run out of juice in the middle of a flight you're hosed...no music and no noise cancelling.

Other than that, these are invaluable to anyone that flies often.


Samsung Galaxy S3, Marble White 16GB (AT&T)
Samsung Galaxy S3, Marble White 16GB (AT&T)
Price: $499.99
8 used & new from $168.40

40 of 47 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Phone but Nothing's Perfect, July 16, 2012
Long review so skip to the section you're most interested in if you don't feel like reading the whole thing.

Physical Aspect:
================
I thought the size of the phone would bother me since it's approaching Galaxy Note size, but I've been pleasantly surprised by how easy it is to handle in my hand. Granted I'm a big guy with big hands, but since I bought one for the wife as well I can tell you that she has not had a single complaint about the size. The screen size is fantastic. Even side to side next to a 4.3" phone the difference while watching a video is pretty significant. I don't feel like I have to squint anymore to catch fine details. I kept hearing about the weight being an issue from the perspective of it being so light that it seemed insubstantial, but to me the size/weight ratio seems just right. The wife and I both have the "marble white" color and I must admit the contrast of the polycarbonate white shell ringed in silver is, visually, very appealing.

The biggest complaint I have in this section are the buttons. For one, the home button at the bottom center is slightly raised (as opposed to all i-devices which have them sunken). This means that in some cases if you have the phone in your pocket and a piece of fabric or something else rubs up against the button it could wake the phone up while in your pocket. It will eventually sleep again, but if this happens multiple times it can affect battery life. A couple of times I've reached for it in my pocket only to discover the screen was already lit up as I took it out. My other problem is the arrangement of the power/volume buttons. I get that the "Galaxy" line has the volume buttons on the left side of the phone, but every other smartphone I've had from HTC to Motorola to Apple has had the volume buttons on the right so you kinda get use to that. One of the biggest annoyances about this is that if you're watching a video in landscape mode you tend to have your index finger and thumb "framing" the phone on top/bottom (a.k.a. left/right in landscape mode) and there is a tendency to raise or lower the volume by mistake.

Which brings me to my next peeve with the buttons. A possible solution to my volume problem while watching a video is just to flip the phone 180 degrees thereby having the volume buttons on the top (while in landscape) instead of on the bottom. The problem with this is that they have decided to put the power button on the right side top part of the phone (also a Galaxy trait I believe), but then you can wind up putting the phone to sleep by inadvertently pressing it while in landscape mode.

Performance:
============
I was a little upset when I found out we weren't getting the Exynos quad-core in favor of the Qualcomm dual-core. Although I haven't handled a quad-core at this point I can tell you that this dual core is VERY responsive. I haven't tasked it with much in the way of mathematical computations or heavy gaming yet, but it's handled everything I've thrown at it on a day-to-day basis without a hiccup. I've since consoled myself with the fact that while it's a dual-core, it comes with 2GB RAM while the international Exynos-chipped version comes with 1GB. I'm not sure at what point the bottle-neck of 1GB RAM gives the advantage to the slower CPU with more memory, but from what I've read the differences are not staggering.

Operating System/Features:
==========================
For all the rave about "Ice-Cream-Sandwich" (Android 4.04) I don't see the "earth-shattering" differences. There are improvements, no doubt, but I really only enjoy a couple of things that I didn't have before on Android 2.3.4. NFC is one. I can beam pictures to my wife's phone, but Google Wallet is useless unless you are on Sprint. I definitely like the data-usage metric, but I use to have an app for that on my previous phone, so...no biggie. I like Smart-Stay (where it watches your eyes to see if you're looking somewhere else while standing in front of the phone and turns off the screen if you're not paying attention). But this seems more like a gimmick because sometimes it doesn't detect your face and winds up shutting off the screen. As for S-Voice (the siri competitor). It's been pretty helpful for composing messages or setting calendar appointments while driving, but it doesn't know how to compose emails and it's buggy. Sometimes it understands you and sometimes it thinks your asking about stuff that's not even close to what you said. I've used siri quite a bit on several iPhones and it's not only more responsive, but has a better "bedside manner" when it doesn't know what the hell you're talking about.

One of the things that was highly touted about Android 4.0 on the SIII (or was it the Samsung GUI that sits on top?) is that if you are texting someone, get tired of texting and want to call them instead you can just put the phone up to your ear while their text is on the screen and it will call them. I've only been able to get it to do this for me when I'm on that person's "contact page". I can't get it to do it while reading one of their texts.

I've never been much of a photographer so for me the pictures most smartphones take are "good enough". To those people who are looking for all the controls and adjustments that the phone has to make them "crisp and clear" I say: If the pictures that you take on a daily basis are THAT important to you, you need a good $600+ Digital SLR (Nikon D5100 or Canon EOS T3 come to mind). In the case of smartphone pictures my biggest problem has always been shutter speed. I could never take a shot of my son doing something funny before he went on to something else. With the SIII though, the shutter REALLY is that fast. It is instantaneous and with the burst shot (20 pictures in quick succession) I haven't missed a shot yet. this aspect of the SIII is awesome. I especially like the "Best Shot" feature. During family cookouts now I don't have to ask 12 people to just stand there and smile for 45 seconds while I take a picture and check it to make sure everyone's eyes were open before I let them all go their separate ways. I can just press the button, the phone takes 8 pictures in rapid succession, analyzes them and offers me the best shot where everyone is smiling and looking this way. I can disband the "Fellowship-of-the-ring" before I look to see if I got a good shot, because I usually will get at least one out of the 8.

Hands down I think my favorite feature on the SIII is the facial recognition security. I like to secure my phone, but I hate jumping through the "enter pin" or "connect the dots" hoops to unlock it. The facial recognition just works (in good light) and I set the pin method as a backup in case it can't see me or doesn't recognize me. I love it.

I do hate, however, the music player that comes with the phone. It's very simplistic and I prefer the sweeping carousel of cover art prevalent on i-devices. Although the speaker volume is loud enough to play music without earphones, unlike on my first-gen iPhone.

Data/Call quality (Carrier: T-mobile):
======================================
The T-mobile version seems to be the red-headed stepchild of the different versions because it's the only one that will not support LTE 4G when it does roll out on T-mobile. The up-front costs are also a little higher. The reason I chose it was because I did some research on Root Metrics ([...]) and found that although T-Mobile is the smallest of the nationwide carriers (by subscribers) they have been quietly upgrading their data network. It's HSPA+ so it's not truly "4G", but frankly, what I care about is data throughput, and 4G data doesn't carry a special badge that says it's 4G so who cares what network it's on, as long as it's fast. Thus far, I average between 8-15Mbps downstream and between 1.2 and 3.3Mbps upstream on 4G in most areas around Miami. That's on the order of several times faster than the DSL I had coming into my home till a few weeks ago when I switched to Comcast. The fact that T-mobile is last among the major carriers means that they offer great prices. I know Verizon is considered the fastest in data, but at the end of the day, how much better quality can an HD video get from watching it on 15Mbps connection than on a 22Mbps connection? 1080p requires between 8-10Mbps so it's like shooting a chicken with a bazooka. As for the phone not supporting LTE...The way I figure it by the time LTE is as ubiquitous as 3G is today this phone will be obsolete and I'll be on to the next greatest thing...so who cares that I won't be able to use it with the technology of 5 years from now? If Google glass is any indication by that time we'll be wearing our wireless devices instead of carrying them around in our pockets.

Lastly, T-mobile's data plan is 2GB of 4G data per device versus Verizon's "share everything among all your devices" plan. And you don't incur overages because once you go over your 2GB limit they slow you down, but you still get data and no additional fees. Oh and call quality is quite good also...but who uses phones to make calls now-a-days anymore? Pfft!
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Feb 27, 2013 9:16 PM PST


Cosmos [VHS]
Cosmos [VHS]
VHS

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 16 Billion years of Time couldn't be told better in 13 hours, January 27, 2000
This review is from: Cosmos [VHS] (VHS Tape)
This video collection is an instant classic. Anyone who wants to know what has happened in the last 16 billion years needs to see this series. "Cosmos" gives it to you straight and in a concise manner. Don't pass it up if you see it anywhere. It's worth it.


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