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ThinkGeek Laboratory Shot Glasses
ThinkGeek Laboratory Shot Glasses
Offered by Tru Inertia
Price: $16.75
11 used & new from $8.20

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Glass, May 1, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: ThinkGeek Laboratory Shot Glasses
I'm pretty sure these are glass, they have that clinking noise to them. Overall these are quite fun. I got them as a joke since a friend and I were mixing drinks under the moniker Future Drinks Lab (play on Future Gadgets Lab). The rounded shape isn't the easiest to drink from, though, or stir. They are also very light as some reviewers have stated, so be careful with these.

May come as no surprise but I felt it worthy to note that the measurements aren't entirely accurate. The disclaimers says to not use these for medical or scientific purposes.

Shadows of the Dying Sun
Shadows of the Dying Sun
Price: $12.99
28 used & new from $6.05

15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars MELODIC death metal., May 1, 2014
A very moody album with many interesting layers. I believe it to be one of Insomnium's more refined releases, and I am a fan of their older material. If you're a fan of straight-up headbanging (melodic DEATH not MELODIC death) this album is probably not for you, but if metal should have some emotion and interesting layers that make re-listening worthwhile, then this is an excellent album. The album starts off with extremely rhythmic modern metal-ish 0-0-0-0-0 riffing (you'd understand if you play guitar), which worried me, but they soon discarded that style for something more musical.

Many reviews have said that this album is a re-release of their past stuff, but I believe this to be only shallow listening. The most obvious difference is the addition of guitarist Markus Vanhala from Omnium Gatherum: many of the melodies have his touch, and the band have incorporated more guitar solos. His melodic sense is second to none, so the solos aren't some shred-filled show-off session. Second, the other Markus, the drummer, started using blast beats, and on a couple of songs (The River, Black Heart Rebellion) you start getting a black metal feel. There is also much more clean singing from guitarist Ville Friman (While we Sleep, Lose to Night, The River, Promethean Song, Shadows of a Dying Sun). However the claim that it's a rehash isn't baseless. The rhythm guitars are often doing similar things as it has in the past, rhythmically and in terms of chord progressions. The lead in "While We Sleep" even sounds like a sped-up version of one of the end melodies in "Song of the Blackest Bird" from One for Sorrow (But the chorus melody is absolutely beautiful). In addition, one thing I personally don't appreciate is that outside of the title track, the bass lines have been much simplified compared to their old material. Regardless of the bass, Niilo's vocals sound as powerful as ever, and the lyrics aren't bad, though as with many harsh vocals, hard to hear clearly.

It may be a 5 star rating for me, as I love the album, but there are other flaws that should be addressed. Admittedly, some songs drag on for a long time, and are at a slower pace, thus become a little boring. It almost borders of doom metal sometimes due to that. It's still a strong album though, with many interesting melodic ideas, heavy bits and beautiful clean passages. After hearing "Revelation" and "While We Sleep", I pre-ordered the disc with the shirt from the official site expecting to hear more, and it's not something I regret.

PS. If you like any of the songs and play guitar check Ultimate Guitar, I've made several tabs for this album!
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jun 6, 2014 9:49 AM PDT

Lomography Diana Mini- 35mm Camera
Lomography Diana Mini- 35mm Camera
Price: $44.54
10 used & new from $30.00

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Don't leave it at home!, March 18, 2011
I've already written a review (on the Holga 135BC) about the awesomeness that is analog photography so I'll just say in general it's actually more fast fun and convenient than most people would think.

As for the Diana Mini there are minor issues I'd like to address. The film advance knob gets stuck often and you have overlapping images whether you want them or not. Fortunately being a mechanical contraption you can google it up and fix it within in hour, if you're crafty. Just make sure you follow the tutorials closely! Second, when you get the film developed, it's best you have a scanner that scans film. The funky square formats and the half frames will confuse the developers and the photos will be cut in all the wrong places and if you purposely overlapped images they might be split. Ask for a developed roll of negatives uncut if you can. Otherwise you might get either very few prints or really messed up prints. And of course if you shoot black and white, developing the film yourself is always a better option. Another issue is the film counter. It goes from empty to 72 I believe. If you switch between half frame and square frame it is very easy to get confused on how many photos are left in your camera. Keep good count!

Now enough of the depressing issues and concerns. The half frame option has to be the main attraction of this camera. The soft focus and vignettes and square frame and simplicity all are nice, but the half frame feels like you can shoot forever and is the unique feature of the mini. There were times I wanted to see what I took but half frame made it so I already took 40 photos but still have film to waste. It's very liberating though, and you can shoot multiple times to make sure you've got a shot, or have certain frames side by side to tell a story, or just shoot anything you see without too much worry about film cost. The pictures themselves are interesting as well. Famous dreamy qualities with just enough focus, unique color and the spacing on the negative itself is fun to look at. You won't get much vignetting in half frame. The viewfinder, as inaccurate as it may be, dims out the areas that won't show in half frame mode.

Lomography doesn't currently sell a shutter release for the mini but a standard one ought to work. It's also highly recommended if you use the bulb mode. The shutter is tough to press so you will get shake pressing it down. The shutter release solves this problem. Also you can shoot without ever gouging your camera which is always fun for candid shots. As a final note regarding accessories, I bought this camera under the impression the Diana+ accessories work with it, as Holga 120s and 135s share the same lens systems. This doesn't seem to be the case with the Diana and Diana Mini. Just a thing to keep note of if you're a fan of adding parts and options to your cameras.

This camera has given me many shots that just wouldn't be the same, or even possible, digitally. It's small and handy and capable of good things and I never leave home without it. And you shouldn't either!

Lomography 35mm 36 Exposure 800 ISO film- 3 pack
Lomography 35mm 36 Exposure 800 ISO film- 3 pack
Price: $9.90
8 used & new from $7.99

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Works as advertised, March 18, 2011
I recently bought this film hoping for radical color effects for use with my Diana Mini. The results were surprising in that the film grain really is fine, and in fact very smooth images were taken. It may have been due to other factors but the colors weren't as fascinating as it may seem it should be. It is still very nice though. I've taken photos in a foggy setting amd they came out very blue and moody. In an indoor setting with lamps on the oranges and reds were quite pronounced. It's hard to believe they were taken on the same film! Be careful when and if you scan your negatives though. The numbering and print on the film makes it confusing. In fact, Costco printed the images completely backwards. That may be a case by case issue though. Anyways, this is a fun film to use and I would recommend it.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jul 3, 2014 2:33 PM PDT

Holga 135BC Plastic 35mm Camera - "Black Corner" Version
Holga 135BC Plastic 35mm Camera - "Black Corner" Version
Price: $39.99
9 used & new from $25.49

10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Missed points, March 18, 2011
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
There are lots of mentions of the technical specs and the vignettes and stuff so I'm not going to go deep into it. But I will say the bent corners does work. I have yet to experience many light leaks with this camera. But being a simple and fully analog camera, modifications and fixes are easily done at home. A warning though: the 135 is not as easy to modify and disassemble as the 120.

Many digital buffs like to say there's no point in the inconvenience of film and hard-to-control cameras like this when things like vignetting, grain, and blur can easily be done digitally. All I can do is shake my head and say "you miss the point entirely" to them. First off, the joy of the analog process is a factor. Now I'm sure others will want more solid reasons. Alright. Speed. There are no on and off switches. Photographic moments can be fleeting. I can't tell you how many moments I missed by trying to pull out my camera from my bag, or waiting for it to turn on. With this nifty guy you just lift it up and click the shutter. It's as fast as your hands will go. In addition the lack of controls not only puts your focus on the subject rather than settings, you come to expect "imperfect" shots anyway so once you understand the basics of using the camera you can take shots really fast and not mind what simple settings there are. Another big plus, portability. You may hesitate to bring an expensive DSLR out to a demanding hike or rough neighborhood. But a sub-$50 camera not so much. Also if you're a fan of candid shots, people are less intimidated having this pointed at them than a digital "real" camera. The clumsy clack sound the shutter makes will also alert them far less.

If you are the adventurous types, total unpredictability is a pro. As an iPhone user I have plastic camera simulation apps. It's not the same. You look at it and select and shake for a different effect and it's like photoshop on auto. Plus, no film wind techniques and light leaks, no personal interior mods or character unique to your own camera. The grain achieved digitally doesn't even match the warm analog grain and blur. Another thing usually seen as a disadvantage is development time. All I will say on that is the feeling of waiting for your film to develop, it's like Christmas presents. It all really makes photography exciting again. This is further heightened if you develop your own film. At that point you're involved intimately in every step of the process of making the image, so when you come out with something, it's just... Special.

All in all I highly recommend this fun little camera if you want to break away from stale digital perfection for living, dynamic shots you can inject your own character into. You may have a little trouble controlling it at first so don't use your first roll on your grand vacations or first dates or anything. But once you get the hang of it, this Holga will do you wonders. Seeing as the price is relatively cheap I also recommend having several of these for different films and effects. Personally I'd recommend other kinds though like the TLR (great for waist level candid shots, low angle) or another style of plastic camera. I own the TLR as well as a Diana Mini. But more important than what you own, have fun!

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