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A. Dent "Aragorn" RSS Feed (Minas Anor, GD)
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Acer Chromebook 13 CB5-311-T1UU (13.3-inch Full HD, NVIDIA Tegra K1, 4GB)
Acer Chromebook 13 CB5-311-T1UU (13.3-inch Full HD, NVIDIA Tegra K1, 4GB)
Price: $379.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Decent Because Fast and Smooth, October 25, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Length:: 0:51 Mins

The attached video has the older HP Chromebook 11, our second Chromebook which we still love and use, next to Acer's Chromebook 13.

You can compare 'the looks' and HPs is probably the prettiest 11" Chromebooks ever and, more importantly, the display quality. HP's resolution is only 1366 x 768 but it's bright and has an unbelievable 176-degree viewing angle.

Brightness was set to the max on both. HP's sound was muted so what you hear comes from Acer's speakers.

________________________________________________________________

We've been using Chromebooks very much ever since they came into existence. To make it clear, we are NOT using Chromebooks for 'business' and yes, we are aware that they are not the ideal tool for video editing, serious gaming or CAD. We use them, mostly in the house, for entertainment and light tasks such as email or googling around. One of our kids does take his Chromebook to college and he does run the online version of Microsoft Office on it. For anyone not familiar and not knowing what to expect, I put together a Chromebook 'pros and cons' at the bottom of this review.

THIS CHROMEBOOK 13 SPECIFICALLY

First of all a little advice: be careful because Acer makes several 13-inch Chromebook models and they come with different resolutions and amounts of memory RAM and SSD storage. This specific model has a 1920x1080 display, 4GB of memory and 32GB SSD. It's the most expensive because it has the highest specs. So, if you see an Acer Chromebook 13 listed at a lower price, make sure to check the specs.

Talking about what makes this Chromebook different, let me begin by observing that it's powered by an NVIDIA Tegra K1 quad core mobile processor. It's significantly more powerful, faster and more efficient than the CPUs found on most 'first generation' Chromebooks and this translates into more efficient multi-tasking, faster screen refresh and longer battery life. Add to that the NVIDIA Kepler GPU with 192 NVIDIA CUDA cores that has the ability to handle general computing (not just graphics) tasks and we have a pretty impressive computing engine. Acer claims up to 13 hours on a full charge. I am not so sure about that but I would say that it's common for my Chromebook 13 to last for 10 hours before I feel that it needs a recharge. It will often run for 2 days on a charge which is pretty good giving that I watch a lot of video on it among other things. But, again, let me be less verbose and simply organize its distinguishing characteristics and comment on each if needed.

- NVIDIA Tegra K1 mobile processor: discussed already
- NVIDIA Kepler GPU with 192 NVIDIA CUDA cores (by the way, CUDA stands for Compute Unified Device Architecture and it's something that NVIDIA developed)
- 4GB of RAM: most Chromebooks come with 2GB which is good because they operate with so little overhead but 4GB translate into being able to have more tabs open without a significant degradation in performance, so it's a good thing.
- 32GB SSD: this is the space for saving your data. You don't need a lot if it on a Chromebook because your apps are in various clouds and so is your personal data. Typical first gen Chromebooks come with 16GB so twice as much is better
- 2 USB 3.0 ports: they are super-fast and there's 2 of them so it's nice to have them.
- HDMI port: just in case you feel like connecting your Chromebook to your TV. I never had to use one myself, ever but, hey, it's there.
- 720p cam, microphone, speakers... of course
- 802.11ac Wi-Fi: this is a big thing if you care about fast connections to your router. Think of 526 Mbps because this is what I am getting. Only a few Chromebooks support 802.11ac at this time even though I'm sure that it's going to be a common feature soon.
- 10-13 hours on one full charge: see above
- 13" 1920x1080 HD display: most Chromebooks come with an 11" screen and a 1280x720 or thereabouts display so, if you want to see 'more' on your screen or see what you normally see 'bigger', you may prefer this model
- Super-slim and light: 0.71 inches thick and weighs 3.31 pounds is quite nice. Yes, there are much lighter Chromebooks out there but they are in the 11" size so if weight is as factor you should consider a smaller model.
- Fingerprint free skin (not shiny).

MY RATING

I find Chromebooks, or at least the 11-inchers to be most useful around the house, good at facilitating entertainment (video, music, social media interaction) and for some light not-necessarily-for-fun chores such as email and maybe banking. To that extent, smaller and lighter is better. Yes, 'video' benefits from a larger screen but it's increasingly easy (Chromecast, Roku, etc.) to send video directly to a big screen so a few extra inches on this 13-inch model are nice to have but not really a 'must have'.

The higher resolution, on the other hand, is a good thing. I can see more of a Web page and I can see more detail.

The extra weight and overall size make this Chromebook harder to move around. I can still handle it with one hand but our 11 year old can't.

Positives that may be a counter-balance to size and weight would include the excellent battery life and, of course, the 802.11ac that makes everything faster and the advanced CPU/GPU combined with the extra memory (4GB is twice the current Chromebook 'normal') that makes everything faster and smoother and allow it to be very good at multi-tasking.

Speaking for myself, I would have preferred a lighter 11-incher with this machine's specs, including the higher screen resolution but this Chromebook 13 is still a good, solid, fast and very capable little machine. Besides everything else mentioned here, it's probably worth stating that the keyboard is an Okay standard Chromebook layout, the track pad is as good as any and the display is decent.

4 stars would the a fair rating. It's not 'five' because of the the high price, breaking the 300 dollar barrier, because of the weight and because the display, while of a higher resolution that most Chromebooks is not as bright and has a narrower viewing angle than some first generation 11 inch models such as HPs.

________________________________________________________________

WHY A CHROMEBOOK AT ALL?

There's so much to say here but let me make a quick summary. And never forget that we are talking about an 'around 300 dollars' device here because, yes, anything that costs 3-4-5 times as much should do SOMETHING better or very few of us would pay more for such devices.

˕ Chromebooks are by far our most used computers excluding work hours and by 'computer' I mean PCs, laptops and tablets.
˕ Malware, spyware, adware-free. Since nothing is really 'installed' on a Chromebook and not much is physically stored on it, it would be very hard for one to be infected. I am in fact now using my Chromebook to open suspicious emails or click on dubious URLs that I don't dare touch from a laptop.
˕ Extremely safe OS. I don't know if this is common knowledge but Google is constantly challenging hackers to crack their OS. As far as I know, Chrome OS wasn't cracked yet.
˕ Easy to share among any number of users without any concerns of compromising privacy. If you have a Google account, you simply sign in and you are going to be within your own, personal environment.
˕ Constantly updated and upgraded. Google updates Chrome OS every few weeks and I found my Chromebooks actually getting better all the time rather than slowly fall into obsolescence.
˕ Nearly maintenance free. Whenever I don't use a tablet or even a laptop for a while, they tend to get very busy once I turn them back on, downloading and installing various patches, updates and upgrades. Not the case for Chromebooks. Whatever upgrades may take place don't hit my Chromebook. I always get the latest version when I call up an app.
˕ The attached keyboard helps a lot. Yes, you can pair a keyboard and even a mouse to a tablet but the Chromebook's keyboard is always there, it negates the need of a stand or even if a protecting case.
˕ Chrome OS is streamlined and efficiently focused where it matters, on the everyday uses most of us need a 'computer' most of the time.
˕ Chrome OS being such a streamlined one, browsing and running apps on a Chromebook is in fact faster than off a PC/laptop/tablet of equivalent CPU and memory specs.
˕ Relatively low prince, decent display and light weight seem to be just about right for something that typically you'd be using to browse the Web while watching TV or take to and from school.
˕ 100 GB of Google cloud storage free for 2 years. This offer comes with each new Chromebook purchased.

WHY NOT A CHROMEBOOK?

Yes, Chromebooks can't do everything. Google's productivity suites notwithstanding, Chromebooks are best at media consumption rather than production. Nobody should buy a Chromebook and expect to be able to edit video or do some hard-core gaming. There are other machines and devices for such tasks. My experience is that a Chromebook can't do 'everything'. Tablets are more portable, PCs and laptops are more powerful and versatile but, to me, my Chromebook is the most fun to use and it's likely to stay this way. I am not going to call it my 'second' or 'third' or 'first' computer but, objectively, it's the one I most use outside business hours if what we measure is 'hours'.
________________________________________________________________

>> Brush your teeth, it's the law! <<


Polaroid POLC3 Cube HD Digital Video Action Camera Camcorder (Black)
Polaroid POLC3 Cube HD Digital Video Action Camera Camcorder (Black)
Offered by DBROTH
Price: $99.99
2 used & new from $99.99

4.0 out of 5 stars It's super, super-cute and it does good video, October 24, 2014
This came as a for review item so, here's my review.

The Cube is just a little over one inch on each side and it's a weather-proof, fish-eye (over 120-degree angle) camera that can do either stills or video at either 720p or 1080p. You get a pretty good output, considering that there are no controls other than still photo (one click) or motion video (double-click). Of course, the image is a little distorted because of the fish-eye lens but... it's meant to be used for fun and not by 'professionals'.

So, here's how it works. Because it's water-proof, anything that could be affected by water - 720p vs. 1080p switch, micro USB port for charging and file transfers, MicroSD card slot - is inside a sealed compartment and you need a coin such as a quarter to open and close it. You supply your own MicroSD card that can be up to 32GB and you charge the Cube through the USB port. Then you select your favorite resolution. If connected to a computer, you will find that the Cube added a number of files to your card, including an app that lets you set the date/time and you can sync it with your computer if you wish and pick between 50/60 fps for the video as well as set the Cube's beeping loudness. Once you close it off, you're ready to go and take pics or make videos.

To operate the Cube, you push the one and only multi-function button. Push it for 3 seconds and the Cube turns itself on. Then, one push will take a picture, two pushes will start the video and it will stop when you push it again. That's it. The Cube will turn itself off if not used for a while and will warn you when it's about to run out of battery juice.

I should also mention that there is a pretty strong magnet at the bottom. You can use it to attach the Cube to various objects. You can also buy various accessories, mostly stands.

It's very nice but I must take away one star because the only supported video format is MOV which is too bad.


Perfect Fitness Ab Carver Sport
Perfect Fitness Ab Carver Sport
Price: $19.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Good all over, some assembly required, October 23, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Some things are just 'good' and this Ab Carver happens to be good all over and it is so for a number of reasons.

- Rock-solid build. Once assembled, it my impression is that it's built to last very much forever.
- Extra-wide wheel. It's about 3" wide which means that you don't need to worry much about tilting while working out.
- 30-second assembly. It's all well documented in the manual and everything snaps in place as expected.
- Ergonomic handles - see pictures. They do make the workout easier and more enjoyable.
- One-year warranty. But, like I said, it's built to last a lot longer.

Enjoy your workout.


Incipio Journal Cover for Kindle Voyage, Floral
Incipio Journal Cover for Kindle Voyage, Floral
Price: $29.99

2.0 out of 5 stars I Like It Not, October 23, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Incipio's 'premium protective folio' is 9 grams or 0.3 oz lighter than Amazon's super-expensive but excellent Amazon Protective Leather Cover for Kindle Voyage. It's also half the price. And I am trying to think of other 'good things' to say about it but... yes... there's a pocket on the inside of the front cover but the way it's set it's almost impossible to access and, if used it would only add more bulk to an already bulky assembly.

The Voyage is physically held in place by 4 restraints on the back cover. I don't believe that you are in any danger of scratching your Precious because they have a rubbery texture but they don't come close to the elegance and convenience of the magnetic hold found in the cover I mentioned above. Incipio claims a 'secure magnetic closure' that should keep the cover close but, if there is any magnetic interaction between the cover and the Kindle I was unable to detect it. In fact, I feel that there's nothing that actually keeps the cover closed. Gravity will open it. There's also bulkiness. Especially when the front cover is flipped back for reading, it feels awkward and uncomfortable.

Oh, and opening the cover does NOT turn on the Kindle and closing it does NOT turn it off. This is bad.

While yes, this cover sells for half the price Amazon charges for their own flagship product, I do not believe it's worth that much. I would not use this cover with my Voyage.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Oct 24, 2014 2:59 PM PDT


Kindle Voyage, 6" High-Resolution Display (300 ppi) with Adaptive Built-in Light, PagePress Sensors, Wi-Fi - Includes Special Offers
Kindle Voyage, 6" High-Resolution Display (300 ppi) with Adaptive Built-in Light, PagePress Sensors, Wi-Fi - Includes Special Offers
Price: $199.00

21 of 28 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Voyage vs. Paperwhite (FAQ at the Bottom), October 22, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Length:: 1:06 Mins

NOTE:

The 'other Kindle' is a Paperwhite. The video shows some of Voyage's distinguishing features: the auto-adjust setting for the light and the way you do page turns by simply squeezing the sensors on the sides. Given Amazon's video resolution limitations it would be hard to show how the Voyage's display is much sharper.

____________________________________________________

UPDATE: DOWNGRADED TO 3 STARS, HOPEFULLY TEMPORARY

I still love the Voyage but I am now waiting for Amazon to ship me a replacement because of a number of issues I detected while using it on 'day 2' and 'day 3'. I am assuming that 'my issues' do not apply to all of Voyagers but, here is why I am downgrading my rating from 4 stars (not 5 because of price) to 3 stars.

- The page turn haptic feedback is almost non-existent, even at the highest setting. The Voyage makes very soft noise when squeezing the page turn sensor, it turns the page but... no feeling.
- The 'auto-brightness' seems to have a mind of its own. It's not clear what drives it but it turned the page so dark, it was almost unreadable last night. Then, after I manually set the brightness to a higher setting with the 'auto' check still on, it kept it high for the rest of my reading session. While I was talking with Amazon's help person this morning, without me ever turning lights on/off, I watched the brightness level moving from 17 up to 21, then down to 17 again. Strange.

And... I am thinking more about the price difference vs. the added features. Yes, the display is sharper but, especially if 'Auto Brightness' turns not to be as useful as expected, it's becoming even harder to justify the price difference. I am going to keep the Voyage - the replacement, anyway - because I love Kindles but, keep in mind that, as far as I can tell so far, every single software feature that Voyage supports is also supported by the Paperwhite.

I may revise my rating once the replacement arrives and I spend more time with the Voyage but, for now, it's down to 3 stars.

____________________________________________________

The Voyage is clearly the best Kindle today and picking one rather than a Paperwhite would be an easy decision if it wasn't for the Voyage's much higher price. All three sections of my reviews are discussing basically the same same thing. The first tries to be very brief, the second is more opinionated, the third (the FAQ) is as factual and objective as possible.

Hope one or all may help make anyone who needs to decide which is the 'right' product make a better informed decision.

As for my rating... while an exceptional reader, I have no choice but take out at least one star because of the high price.

VOYAGE VS PAPERWHITE (briefly)

I've been using Kindle readers for quite a few years already and, not surprisingly since it's 'the latest', the Voyage is also 'the greatest' Amazon reader in existence (wrote this in Oct., 2014). At the same time, I can see why not everyone would be persuaded to pay significantly more for the Voyage when the Paperwhite is almost as good.

When compared to the Paperwhite, the Voyage comes with the following improvements:

* much better display due to better screen resolution (300 dpi vs. 212 dpi, twice as many dots per square inch)
* adaptive light intensity (manual set on Paperwhite)
* glass screen (Paperwhite is plastic)
* magnesium back (Paperwhite is plastic)
* 1 oz lighter (6.3 oz vs. 7.3 oz)
* 2.5 mm thinner (7.6 mm vs. 9.1 mm)
* page turn touch sensors on bezel with haptic feedback (touch-screen only on Paperwhite)

I believe that the Paperwhite gets a better battery life but not by much. And, of course, it costs a lot less.

_______________________________________________________

WHY A VOYAGE? (more verbose and opinionated)

The Kindle readers, not the Fire tablets are in my view Amazon's truly innovative and revolutionary product. Voyage's Paperwhite much improved display ensures that Amazon will continue to lead for the time being when it comes to readers. We've been using Kindles ever since the Kindle 3 a.k.a. the Kindle Keyboard so, maybe I'm a little biased but I believe that we keep buying more Kindles because they are good products that serve our needs, in addition to saving a tree or two. Besides the Keyboard model we also own a Kindle Touch, a 'plain' Kindle (no keyboard, no touch) and one each of the two Paperwhite generations. [Why? Because of 'family of five' and because we read books.]

When compared to previous Kindle generations, the Voyage improves significantly on display (got to see it to believe it), build and design - it's lighter, smaller, prettier and the screen is now glass rather than plastic - and a number of other hardware features such as self-adjusting brightness and the ability to turn pages by touching sensors on the sides rather than the screen. The software, on the other hand, is very much what you see on all recent Kindle models which is Okay because, with so many models around, I appreciate the unified experience. I am not going to talk a lot about software features in my review because Amazon's Kindle software keeps evolving and improving, with new capabilities popping up every now and then (the Goodreads tab and the vocabulary builder feature for example appeared not too long ago) so what I wrote today may be surpassed in a few months by an upgrade.

The Voyage improves on the best features of its predecessors. The display, again, is super-sharp, the body is lighter, the touch controls appear to be more responsive with the added page-turning touch on the rim, the battery life I am told is only slightly shorter than its predecessor's but still measured in 'weeks' and all of the Kindle's e-reader frills are supported: borrowing, all the social features, Whispersync, X-Ray, parental controls...

As in the previous 2 generations or so, this reader lacks speakers. I am not trying to be an Amazon apologist but I actually don't mind 'no speakers'. Not because I've only used them once and only once on my old Kindle Keyboard but their absence allows for the e-reader to be significantly smaller and lighter and, since probably most Kindle owners don't care much about using their reader as an MP3 player... the good of the many... But, yes, anyone who was hoping or expecting audio books support, it's available on phones, tablets but not on this reader. I view the Kindle readers as 'books' and traditional books don't come with speakers so... there.

I put together this little FAQ to record my experience with Amazon's Voyage. Since I've just started using it, I will add to it when I discover anything new worth sharing and and expanded it with answers to whatever questions may be asked in the Comments section.

_______________________________________________________

THE FAQ SECTION (as factual and unbiased as possible)

Q: Why buy a dedicated reader given that I could read my Amazon e-books on my laptop/tablet/phone?
A: The reader experience is much closer to reading an actual book. While a tablet or phone could be used in a portrait orientation to simulate a book's page, the reader's e-paper display combined with the Paperwhite lighting technology make the reader look very much like an actual piece of paper. Tablets and phones have glare. And, speaking for myself, I much appreciate the ability to read my books offline (Airplane Mode on) without the constant distractions that pop in and out on a tablet or phone.

Q: Is it worth paying this much more for a Voyage?
A: It depends. In my view, I'd go with the Voyage if I could easily afford it and the emphasis is on 'easily'. This may be Amazon's greatest reader yet but I could be happily reading my books on a much less expensive Paperwhite or pay one third of the price for an even less expensive basic Kindle.

Q: Should I pay a little extra for an 'ads free' model?
A: I personally would not and I did not. The Kindle never shows ads while in the process of reading a book. Ads only appear as the 'screen saver' when the Kindle goes to sleep or on a narrow strip at the bottom on the screen when not actually reading a book. Besides, I heard that you can still pay Amazon later to turn the ads off if you just can't stand them.

Q: Should I pay more for a 3G model?
A: Yes, if you can easily afford it. I've never bought a 3G Kindle and I never missed it but I don't use my Kindles to read time-sensitive content such as newspapers. Wi-Fi is good enough for me because books are rarely impulse buys and a Wi-Fi hot spot or a laptop with an USB port tend to be only minutes or at worst hours away.

Q: Should I buy a cover for my Paperwhite?
A: I did because I was planning to try the new Origami cover for a while now. After a couple of hours of use I think I like it but it's far from cheap. I would expect many third party alternatives soon.

Q: What if the Paperwhite does not meet my expectations. Can I return it?
A: Yes. You may return it within 30 days of delivery date for a full refund. Amazon pays for shipping it back if you are returning a defective item but you will pay if you return it because you changed your mind or didn't like it. Last time I returned a small gadget about the size of a Kindle the shipping charge was about $3. I received the refund 2 or 3 days after Amazon received the package.

Q: How does the Voyage compare with previous models?
A: When compared to the Paperwhites, the Voyage has a visibly improved display, a lighter, sleeker, more high-end looking body and has the ability to auto-adjust its brightness to match the ambient light.

Q: Describe the display.
A: The Paperwhite display technology featured on the Voyage allows for LED-produced light to distribute almost evenly across the reading surface. This makes the display brighter during the day and eliminates the need of a lamp at night. It is also impervious to glare, allowing the one to use the reader very much one would use a book.

Q: How bright is the Voyage's display?
A: See above. It's better to leave it in auto, self-adjusting mode but, if you insist, you can make it just about as bright as you want it to be. There is a sliding scale that allows you to easily select your preferred level from almost 'off' to a level of brightness that almost hurt my eyes.

Q: In what way is the 'paperwhite' technology better than a tablet's hi-res display?
A: Tablets screens are backlit. Backlit screens are generally difficult to read outdoors and tend to cause eyestrain if read at night. Voyage's display reflects daylight and the light generated by Kindle's LEDs the same way paper does and this is good for reading. Books can be read without difficulty outdoors even during a bright sunny day as well as at night.

Q: Is the Voyage's display better than the previous Kindles, especially the current Paperwhite's?
A: Yes. The resolution is significantly higher.

Q: Is the light evenly distributed on the screen?
A: By and large yes, light is distributed on Voyage's screen significantly more even, especially when compared with the first generation Paperwhite's display.

Q: Is the Paperwhite display larger than that of previous Kindles?
A: No. Paperwhite's display is the exact same size as that of previous Kindle e-readers but the reader's body is smaller because of the narrower bezel.

Q: Is Paperwhite's page turning faster than on previous models?
A: Yes.

Q: Does the Kindle Voyage come with speakers or an audio out port?
A: No.

Q: How much storage (memory) is available on the Voyage?
A: 4 GB overall but there is some OS overhead so less is available for storing content.

Q: Is there a MicroSD slot or any other memory expansion?
A: No.

Q: Is a charger included?
A: No, but like all Kindle e-readers, the Voyage can be easily and quickly charged off a laptop or most generic or branded USB chargers.

Q: Is a charging/data cable included?
A: Yes, a black Type A to Micro-B USB cable is in the box.

Q: How easy/difficult was it to set up the Wi-Fi connection? And how do you turn it off?
A: Individual experiences may vary but my Kindle immediately detected our home network, prompted me for a password and once I entered it it connected. You turn Wi-Fi off by turning on "Airplane Mode".

Q: Does it come with a manual?
A: Not a physical 'paper' manual but there is one as a preloaded User Guide. It shows you everything this Kindle can do, from setting up the level of brightness to shopping or borrowing to X-Ray and beyond.

Q: Are there any physical buttons?
A: There is only one On/Off button on the back and the page turning sensors on the bezel. All other controls, are through screen touch.

Q: How much does it weigh?
A: 6.3 oz.

Q: Do I need to backup my Kindle?
A: In the event of a disaster all Amazon-purchased content can be retrieved from Amazon's cloud but if you uploaded non-Amazon content to your Kindle it's your responsibility to back it up.

Q: How is content delivered to the Voyage?
A: Content can be uploaded either through Wi-Fi (or 3G) or or through the USB port.

Q: Is the Kindle Voyage confined to Amazon's content?
A: No. You can upload non-DRMed content, including MOBI book files. Kindle does not support EPUB but there are very good free EPUB to MOBI converter apps. Not officially endorsing it but Calibre happens to be my favoriteEPUB to MOBI converter.

--
>> Brush your teeth, it's the law! <<
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Oct 22, 2014 7:59 AM PDT


SPARK (TM) Fire Starter Paracord Bracelet with Emergency Whistle Side Release Buckle - Magnesium Fire Steel - Clasp with Knife Cutter & Striker Accessories - Survival Gear Kit on your wrist - Black 550 Mil-Spec 7-Strand Parachute Cord Rope - Uses include EDC, Camping Supplies, Outdoor Hiking and Hunting, Fishing, Lanyard, Belt, Knot, Jig, Clips - Best Paracord Bracelet Available - 100% SATISFACTION GUARANTEE & LIFETIME WARRANTY
SPARK (TM) Fire Starter Paracord Bracelet with Emergency Whistle Side Release Buckle - Magnesium Fire Steel - Clasp with Knife Cutter & Striker Accessories - Survival Gear Kit on your wrist - Black 550 Mil-Spec 7-Strand Parachute Cord Rope - Uses include EDC, Camping Supplies, Outdoor Hiking and Hunting, Fishing, Lanyard, Belt, Knot, Jig, Clips - Best Paracord Bracelet Available - 100% SATISFACTION GUARANTEE & LIFETIME WARRANTY
Offered by First Strike Tactical
Price: $24.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Yes, we can, October 21, 2014
The bracelet came to us as a 'for review' unit and, given that we live literally across the street from a 20,000 acre state park, I do appreciate it cramming a few of the essentials into something that goes around my wrist.

There are several basic components held together by the 9 feet of black paracord woven into a bracelet:

- cord cutter/fire striker steel
- ferrocerium rod
- whistle

The whistle, by the way, can be very loud and annoying. The rod is contained into the bracelet's lock and so is the whistle. You can detach the steel but you don't really have to if all you want is to start a fire. Just find some really dry stuff and it should work. I didn't unweave the paracord yet because it's something irreversible and you're only supposed to do it when you need to but, see the product's page. The possibilities are... numerous.


Amazon Protective Leather Cover for Kindle Voyage, Black
Amazon Protective Leather Cover for Kindle Voyage, Black
Price: $59.99

31 of 33 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Kindle Cover Standards Set High, October 21, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Length:: 0:51 Mins

NOTE:

The video is meant to show the the way the cover works. It's quite simple - the person doing the folding was doing it only for the second time when captured on video. The 'other Kindle' is a Paperwhite.

____________________________________________________

The cover arrived one day before the Voyage so we had some time to learn the Origami art. Not a lot to learn, really :) You flip the front cover over the top and you can hold your Kindle in your hand and read. Or you fold the bottom in a predetermined way and... there it is, you have a stand and it's magnetically held together and it's all very, very nice, thin, light and pretty. It better be, because this cover is far from 'cheap'.

Speaking for myself, this is the best Kindle cover I've ever experienced and, being an active Amazon reviewer I had a chance to try quite a few Paperwhite and various Kindle tablet covers in the past several years. I like it/love it because:

* it's light
* it's thin
* it's durable
* it's easy to change it from any to any of its three configurations
* it's covered in genuine leather

The Origami provides good protection against blows and scratches but maybe not so match against drops because it lacks soft padding. I must admit, I did not drop my Kindle so maybe I am wrong on this one. The cover holds itself closed magnetically when closed and, when closed, you can access Voyage's own ON/OFF button on the back through an equivalent button on the back of the cover. I don't believe that button will see much use though because the Origami actually turns on the Voyage when you open the cover and turns it off when you close it. The Voyage itself simply magnetically attaches itself to the cover (strong magnets) and stays there and the 2 become one body. It takes about one second to complete the setup.

It's five stars because I absolutely love it and I am unaware on anything better.

UPDATE (added it to the FAQ): since 'weight' seems to be a concern, I placed the Voyage with cover on a kitchen scale. It weighs 10.9 oz (309 g) Since the Voyage itself weighs 6.3 oz (180 g), the cover's weight is 4.6 oz (129 g). Clearly, the cover adds to the weight because it can't be weightless but it doesn't quite 'double' it.

____________________________________________________

THE FAQ

Q: What makes the Origami different?
A: The front cover can be folded to create a reading stand.

Q: How hard/easy is it to configure the cover into a reading stand?
A: Once I learned how to do it, about 2 seconds? It took me 2-3 tries to learn it.

Q: Can I adjust the viewing angle while in a reading stand configuration?
A: No.

Q: How heavy is it?
A: The Voyage with cover weighs 10.9 oz (309 g). Since the Voyage itself weighs 6.3 oz (180 g), the cover's weight is 4.6 oz (129 g).

Q: How protective is it?
A: It's what appears to be leather-covered hard plastic. It should provide good protection against scratches and blows but there is no soft padding so I'm not sure how good it is on drops.

Q: Does the cover open like a book?
A: No. You flip it over the top. More like a Steno book.

Q: Does the front cover once open, hold itself against the body?
A: Yes, it stays magnetically attached to the back.

Q: How do you attach the Kindle to the cover?
A: The Kindle is held into the cover through strong magnets.

Q: Does the cover turn the Kindle ON/OFF once opened/closed?
A: Yes.

Q: Is there a way to access the Power button on the back of the Kindle, once the cover is attached?
A: Yes, there cover itself has a button that, when pressed will in turn press the Kindle's own.
Comment Comments (8) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Oct 24, 2014 6:46 AM PDT


BMG Women's Sport suit Comfortable Yoga Set tank tops vest/ Long yoga pants
BMG Women's Sport suit Comfortable Yoga Set tank tops vest/ Long yoga pants
Offered by ELITECOMPUTER
Price: $35.00

5.0 out of 5 stars BMG's Secret, October 19, 2014
The set came as a 'for review' offer and Ms. D. tried it immediately on a 3-mile treadmill run. She's very happy with both the looks and the feel and she rates it a five-star because she loves it.

The fabric is 88% Polyester, 12% Spandex for the top and 87%/13% for the pants and it looks well... the way you would expect a good quality Yoga ensemble to look. They stretch nicely but I would say that they are design for exercise comfort and performance and probably not so good for clubbing or any other non-exercise functions because the lower end of the pants is not a tight fit. That being said, anyone wearing this in a gym is likely to feel elegant and, at least the coral/black style, the one we received, is a head turner. It turned my head, anyway :)

To make it brief, for about half as much as V's Secret would charge you, this is an exercise outfit you will be wearing without ever being one bit embarrassed.


Sabrent SuperSpeed 2-Slot USB 3.0 Flash Memory Card Reader for Windows, Mac, Linux, and Certain Android Systems - Supports SD , SDHC , MMC / MicroSD , T-Flash (CR-UMSS)
Sabrent SuperSpeed 2-Slot USB 3.0 Flash Memory Card Reader for Windows, Mac, Linux, and Certain Android Systems - Supports SD , SDHC , MMC / MicroSD , T-Flash (CR-UMSS)

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Elegance in (micro)SD Reading, October 18, 2014
Yes, I received this from Sabrent as a 'for review' item. No, I did not promise them a 'good review' in return.

I've reviewed quite a few card readers in the past but this one, without a doubt, is the prettiest of them all - great design - and it's not much larger than a 'large' USB thumb drive.

The reader is designed to mainly support the two most popular memory card formats these days: SD and microSD and... a few related (see below). If this is what you have and your computers come with USB 3.0 ports, you may want to consider this one because it does the job and it does it well. Depending on you memory card's speed, transfer can happen VERY fast over a USB 3.0 port.

I didn't try any other formats but Sabrent claims to also support SDHC, SDXC, microSDHC and microSDXC which I suppose is the case. Just wasn't able to test it myself.

This one is a 5 stars because I love the great design and looks, small size and the USB 3.0 performance.


Sabrent 60 Watt (12 Amp) 10-Port Family-Sized Desktop USB Rapid Charger. Smart USB Charger with Auto Detect Technology for iPhone 6 5s 5c 5, iPad Air mini, Galaxy S5 S4, Note 3 2, the new HTC One (M8), Nexus and More [Black] (AX-TPCS)
Sabrent 60 Watt (12 Amp) 10-Port Family-Sized Desktop USB Rapid Charger. Smart USB Charger with Auto Detect Technology for iPhone 6 5s 5c 5, iPad Air mini, Galaxy S5 S4, Note 3 2, the new HTC One (M8), Nexus and More [Black] (AX-TPCS)

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Don't You Fear, Sabrent's 10-Port Charger Is Here :), October 18, 2014
Just to get this out of the way. Sabrent sent me the charger as a 'for review' item and, as always, I never promise a 'good' review in exchange. In fact I don't promise anything in exchange.

The 'family-sized' is quite appropriate but maybe it should be called 'large family-sized'. Without a doubt, there are sufficient ports on this charger to satisfy all of our family of 5 charging needs. The charging 'brick' is 95x55x45mm (not too large but large and heavy enough for it to stand firmly on its bottom) and it will output a maximum of 12A so, if what you are planning to charge is 10 tablets, it's not going to work so well but it should do 10 phones if you have that many.

Sabrent claims that these are 'smart ports' as in they 'intelligently identify each connected device' which may very well be the case. I was able to gather some 7 devices that needed charging and it all went well and as fast as I expected.

For the traveler who travels with many gadgets, it's worth noting that it supports AC 100-240V and the power cord is detachable so you may use something that would work with a foreign country's electrical outlets if needed.

Almost forgot, Sabrent backs this with a support hotline and a 1-year warranty.


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