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Profile for Penny Essex > Reviews


Penny Essex's Profile

Customer Reviews: 17
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Helpful Votes: 113

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Penny Essex "Penny Essex" RSS Feed (Toronto)

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3.0 out of 5 stars Did not sound too bad on the phone, December 15, 2015
I bought this monitor in April 2014. At the beginning of 2015, it started already to show signs of malfunction: a green, sometimes magenta vertical line would display from time to time. By August 2015, the magenta line was permanently showing, so I decided to take advantage of the 4 year warranty offered by NEC on this monitor and phoned them.

The lady was really cooperative and finally asked me to email photos of the monitor, showing the vertical line, and for helping them to check that the monitor was not damaged. Fair enough.

On the same day, they emailed me back to confirm that they would proceed with an exchange, but I had to call them with a valid credit card information to hold as collateral in the case that the defective unit would not be returned. Fair enough.

First surprise: speaking with another lady the next day to give my credit card info, I learned that I would not get a brand new unit, rather a refurbished one. Did not sound too bad on the phone, but now that I have the replacement monitor, it has plastic nicks on the right bottom corner. So I paid a small fortune for a brand new monitor and one year and four months later, I have a refurbished unit that is a bit damaged... The lady also told me that now that they had the credit card info, they would let me know by email when the replacement monitor would ship. They never did.

I live in a condominium building. I also gave them the apartment number, but it was not put on the mailing label. Of course, the replacement unit, quickly sent through a parcel service in less than 48 hours, was delivered to the wrong apartment... Fortunately, I have honest neighbours, otherwise one would have got a free computer monitor... And not knowing that it was shipped, I could have wait several days before even realized it had been delivered to the wrong address. Fast service, but clumsy enough to have caused a serious mess...

This computer monitor is the third one I have bought in my life (after an Apple display and a ViewSonic, and a few all-in-one computers in between) and is, by far, the most expensive I ever purchased (mainly for photo retouching and computer graphics) and yet, it’s the only one that has failed so quickly. The customer service at NEC has some shortcomings, so all things considered, I am rather disappointed by this purchase, even though the monitor has, no doubt, great image quality. But does it worth the money? I will see the reliability of this replacement unit, but I am quite convinced now that one can have a good image quality at better price and that I will never buy again a monitor at such a high price, especially if it is a NEC. It does not worth it.

The Why Cafe
The Why Cafe
by John P. Strelecky
Edition: Paperback
Price: $9.97
51 used & new from $0.01

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars it does not give any answer at all) and that is written so poorly that it becomes boring after just a few pages, April 25, 2015
This review is from: The Why Cafe (Paperback)
The simplism of this book is so blatant that it becomes scary that so many people find it “inspiring”...

This is simply a very, very old life questioning subject, for which this book does not give any novel answer (in fact, it does not give any answer at all) and that is written so poorly that it becomes boring after just a few pages...

So why has it become a best seller? I think the answer is very, very scary...

On Cocaine (On Series)
On Cocaine (On Series)
by Sigmund Freud
Edition: Paperback
18 used & new from $4.56

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars This book is a load of trash., September 27, 2013
This review is from: On Cocaine (On Series) (Paperback)
Apart from the translation of Freud's papers on cocaine, this book worth nothing, being full of misleading information.

For example, Freud is presented as an Austrian psychiatrist, which he never was, being only a neuropathologist (this is the only official diploma he ever got from the University of Vienna).

Commenting on the influence of cocaine on the development of psychoanalysis, the author refers to some critical studies by Jürgen vom Scheidt and Peter Swales, only to conclude that « all such studies have only managed to demonstrate tenuous links however » (p. xi). Yet, in numerous texts written by Freud himself and published in the early 1900's (see Three Essays on Sexuality, Introductory Lectures on Psychoanalysis), Freud points out the « similarity of the neuroses to the phenomena of intoxication and abstinence after the use of certain alkaloids ». And that claim would be a tenuous link between his theories and the effects of cocaine???

Avoid this book. It is written by a Freudian zealot who just can't stand to have his eyes opened by undeniable facts and who tries to keep the faith of the gullibles alive by distorting reality.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Oct 24, 2015 12:27 PM PDT

Giottos Rocket Air Blaster Air Blower, Large
Giottos Rocket Air Blaster Air Blower, Large
Price: $9.75
19 used & new from $9.75

5.0 out of 5 stars It's an air pump..., July 8, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
... that blows air. Difficult to rate such a simple object. What could be wrong with it? The flow of air is strong enough to remove dust, so it does a good job for what it is intended for.

Electrolux EWFLS70JIW 27 5.1 cu. Ft. Front-Load Washer - Island White
Electrolux EWFLS70JIW 27 5.1 cu. Ft. Front-Load Washer - Island White
2 used & new from $1,147.00

10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very quiet and efficient washer, July 8, 2013
The number of cycles, and options per cycle, are just staggering. At first, it's even confusing, since there are so many.

You select the cycles with the main central dial. From left to right, the cycles are: Favorites specialty, Deep clean sanitize, Heavy duty, Whitest white, Colors, Normal, Casual, Active wear, Fast wash, Delicate, Hand wash, Rinse & spin.

Then in the LCD window, you get the water temperature (7 levels), the spin speed (6 levels), the soil level (6 levels) and several other options that include: Add steam, Eco friendly, Allergen, Extended fresh, Shrink guard, Add more water, Stain pretreat, Fresh rinse, Extra spin, Pre wash, Warm rinse, Delay start.

But that is not all. When you select the Favorites specialty cycle, there are even more cycles available from the LCD window. There are two options displayed in the LCD window under the Favorites specialty cycle: My Favorites and Specialty cycles. Select the latter, and there you get more cycles by rotating the main dial: those are Jeans, Fast sanitize, Stuffed animals, Pet beds, Clean washer, Steam pretreat, Kids wear, Fast steam and Wool. Impressive, as would say Darth Vador!!

And then the fun begins, as you can combine all these options. But not always. For example, if you select the Deep clean sanitize cycle, you will obviously not be able to deselect the steam option.

You can wash almost anything in this appliance. The wash drum is big enough to easily wash a comforter.

The washer is very efficient on water consumption compared to a top-load appliance and the spin cycle removes a lot of water, so that the time in the dryer is well reduced. The clothes are very well cleaned, in a very soft manner that certainly helps protect them in the long term.

But the feature that impress me the most is the quietness of the appliance. The washer is in my bathroom, next to my home office. With my previous top-load washer, I had to close the door of the bathroom to be able to work. With this one, even with the bathroom door opened, I hear nothing. In the first few days, I even got up from my desk a couple of times to go see in the bathroom if the washer was still working. There, I couldn't believe that it was indeed washing!

The reason I give 4 stars rather than 5 is related to the Electrolux after-sales service. When I installed the washer, I made the mistake of placing the drain hose too deep inside the wall-pipe. That caused the washer to stop working on the very first wash I made with it, because it couldn't empties at the end of the cycle. An error message displayed in the LCD window said that the washer needed a service call, labelling the trouble Code 13, and displayed also a 1-800 number. It was on a saturday, so I called... Of course, nobody answered. The recorded voice message rather said that Electrolux office was closed and there was no option to leave a message... When I phoned back on Monday, the lady could only offer me to give a call to the store where I bought the washer... This is not an emergency phone number and it's totally useless...

Anyway, the appliance is just great and washes very quietly and so far, I am very pleased with it. As for the long term reliability, this is the only question I can't answer yet.

Yes, I would recommend it to a friend.

UPDATE 2014-01-12
I raise the rating from 4 to 5 stars for the following reason: I have a set of white satin bed sheets that had become yellowish with time, no matter how I washed them in my previous top-load washer. I have not count the number of times I washed this set in my new Electrolux washer, because I wasn't expecting such outcome, but after, I would say, 5 washes at the most in my new washer, they are white again.

It struck me the last time I took them out of the dryer: they were white again! I've never seen anything like that in my whole life, and I am over 50. I did not change the detergent or the fabric softener, I use the same popular brand of liquid detergent and liquid fabric softener. So it means the washer makes the difference. Very glad I purchased this set (washer and dryer), it has so far surpassed my expectations.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jun 14, 2015 7:54 PM PDT

Brother DCP-7020 Laser Digital Copier/Printer
Brother DCP-7020 Laser Digital Copier/Printer
2 used & new from $179.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Works like a charm, April 6, 2013
I own this printer for almost 6 years now (bought it in april 2007) and it has worked without a glitch ever since I took it out of the box. It has been connected to a iMac running system 10.4.7, then 10.6.8, and is now connected to a Mac pro running system 10.8.2. I never had a bug with any of these systems and driver updates have always been quickly available on the manufacturer website (much faster than Xerox, on that matter).

I use it mainly to print and scan text documents, at home. Very easy to setup the printer and scanner software from the menu bar icon. Some reviewers complain about the OCR configuration, but since I use a third party software for OCR (ReadIris), I can't tell anything about this feature of the scanner.

Being unable to wake it up from sleep on few occasions is the only issue I had with it. Shutting the printer down and restarting it solves the problem. Other than that, the printer and the scanner have always worked like a charm. The quality of the print output and the scan input is excellent for the price of the device.

Since I don't see any reason to change it, I won't, but when time comes to buy a new printer, I will look at Brother products for sure.

Apple Mac Pro MD770LL/A Desktop (OLDER VERSION) (Discontinued by Manufacturer)
Apple Mac Pro MD770LL/A Desktop (OLDER VERSION) (Discontinued by Manufacturer)
11 used & new from $699.99

13 of 17 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars From iMac to Mac Pro, December 2, 2012
Just bought myself a new 2012 Mac Pro today. I haven't received it yet and will update this review and the rating once I get it and then after a year.

The reason I wanted to post a review already is to explain why I chose the Mac Pro over the iMac.

This new Mac Pro is my fifth Apple computer. My current Mac is an iMac 24inches Intel Core 2 Duo. Before that, I had a G4 tower, with a Motorola chip.

I bought the G4 in 1999 and believe it or not, this Mac is still running as of today. All my Macs are turned on 24 hours a day, seven days a week, for almost all year long. I only shut them down when I go away from home for more than 3 days, which means around 3-4 times a year. They are both set up to go to sleep after 1 hour of idle time. So my G4 is now close to 14 years old (the cost is well written off by now!) and I never had one issue with it. Not a single glitch either with the RAM, the hard disk, the mother board or anything else.

As opposed to my iMac (bought in june 2006) that is a bit over 6 years old now, costed me less than the G4 but is already showing signs of malfunction. As an example, five days ago, I was using HandBrake to convert a movie and all of a sudden, it froze and gave me a blue screen... First time ever I see this on a Mac. I had to kill it by holding down the power button, but when I restarted, everything was fine. All kinds of strange bugs like that happen over the last few months.

So I decided that if the iMac dies, I will not have it fixed and based on my experience with the G4, I decided to go for the Mac Pro, hoping that it will be as reliable. You may say what's the point of keeping a computer for so long, since the technology evolves so fast. Well, based on my needs, upgrading at the pace of the technology isn't a requirement. For example, I use a flat bed Agfa scanner on my G4 to scan printed photos from many sources (newspapers, magazines, old photos, etc). It came with a software to scan photos that has so many options and gives so good results, I never found anything better since. So as long as my G4 lasts, this scanner will be my main tool to scan photos, because I cannot plug it in newer computers and it runs only on old system 9.1.

I chose the new Mac Pro with the quad-core chip, because I use Photoshop a lot to edit photos and it does not manage more than four cores anyway.

In short, I prefer to buy a computer that is a bit more expensive at the date of purchase, but which lasts and becomes cheaper with time, than one that needs to be changed after 3 years and has erratic functionning in that period of time. In that sense, I don't trust the iMac for the long run.

DEC 17, 2012
This is a first impression report, as promised in the previous section of this review.
The first thing that surprised me when I got the Mac Pro is the size of the computer. It is huge! Much bigger than the 1999 G4. Even though I knew it was going to be bigger when I looked at the dimensions, it is quite impressive when you see it for real. So be aware that it is going to take space on your desk.

Nevertheless, it was easy to get it out of the box, thanks to the two handles at each end of the computer. It is heavy, though, but that heaviness gives a feel of a computer very strongly built.

I ordered the Mac Pro with only one hard drive, because I found internal hard disks much cheaper at another store. I had to install them by myself and even though I had never done this before, the Mac Pro is so well designed inside, it is so easy to figure out how to do it that in 15 minutes, the job was done, without the need to look inside the user's guide.

Another surprise when I started the computer : none of the three hard disks were visible on the desktop. And yet, the computer started. Using Disk Utility, I realised that Mac OS was seeing them. So, what was going on?

After a lot of reading on the Internet, I learned that Mac OS 10.8 comes by default with the "Show hard disks on desktop" checkbox unchecked. You have to go to Finder/Preferences and check that box. Be aware.

Third surprise are the scroll bars in any window. By default, they show only when the mouse roll over. I found that setting quite annoying. But how do you change it? I read on the Internet that I would need to install a third party tiny application, but that is not true if you have OS X 10.8.2. Go to System Preferences/General icon and there you have a radio button to have the scroll bars always on.

First time also that I ordered a Mac with a wireless keyboard and mouse. The keyboard is so slim, so tiny, it is a joy to use. Even though it comes without a keypad and requires to get used to a new key layout, for those used to an extended keyboard, the joy of using it cancel the pain of learning a new key layout (I don't mean here the QWERTY layout, but rather the other keys. For example, on an extended keyboard, you have two separate delete keys, one for backward deleting and one for forward deleting. On this smaller wireless keyboard, there's only one delete key, which is a backward delete key, and for forward deleting, you have to press the function and backward delete keys at the same time).

Be also aware that any new Mac now comes without a system backup on DVD. Go to Apple support Web pages and look for « Reinstall OS X » and « Recovery Disk Assistant » for details.

Finally, the speed is there. Applications open almost instantly (Photoshop CS5, InDesign CS5, Word, Excel 2011). I have not made yet an extensive testing of the performance, but it is already obvious that this Mac has power.

So far, I am quite pleased with this new Mac Pro.

Something weird happened today. Trying to install a Windows OS with Bootcamp, something went wrong and I needed to reboot. But the Mac Pro wouldn't restart on MacOS but rather ask for the Windows install DVD. I couldn't do that because none of the keys of the wireless keyboard would work. Nothing. So I could not open the door of the DVD drive. After several attempts, I plugged my old USB wired keyboard from the iMac, and then holding the ALT key worked just fine and I could choose the boot drive. None of the wireless devices of the Mac Pro (keyboard and mouse) worked on restart. So wireless devices don't seem very safe for emergency restart...
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Mar 16, 2013 10:52 AM PDT

No Title Available

2.0 out of 5 stars Try it - you'll love it, December 2, 2012
I have used Williams' Lectric Shave preshave lotion for the first time the last two weeks, and I can say it will now be part of my every day shaving. It does soften shaving and reduces irritation. I use a Braun series 7 and I saw a difference from the first day I tried it. The Braun shaver glided over my skin like never before. I can't compare with other products, though, as Lectric Shave is the first preshave lotion I try.

It takes a small amount of lotion per shaving, so the additional cost is trifling. With the 3oz bottle, you have enough lotion for several seven days a week shaving. Be aware, though, that the bottle isn't the best design to apply the lotion with your hand. The first week, using Williams' bottle, I spilled half of the lotion in my hands, half in my face. This is the main reason why I give a 4 to the product rather than a 5. Since then, I decided to transfer the lotion into a 100ml glass spray bottle and now 100% of the lotion goes onto my face. Use your free hand to protect your eyes when spraying.

Some reviewers complain about the odor. I agree, this is not perfume, but I did not find it bad at all. If you can't stand the smell anyway, you may try this: I shave before taking a shower, then after the shower, I apply my aftershave lotion. So far, my wife has not complain about an unpleasant scent.

Bottom line, this product does the job it is intended for really well, at a cheap cost.

I lower the score from four to two stars, because this product has gave me a skin irritation in the chin area. I had red patches with dry skin. I stopped using the product and the irritation disappeared, so I am pretty sure it was the cause. Maybe the spray bottle I used was applying to much of the product and that may explain why the bottle has such a tiny opening; the lotion has to be applied in a very small amount at a time.

Citizen Eco-Drive Men's AT4004-52E Perpetual Chrono A-T Two-Tone Stainless Steel Watch
Citizen Eco-Drive Men's AT4004-52E Perpetual Chrono A-T Two-Tone Stainless Steel Watch
Price: $446.25
23 used & new from $415.01

27 of 38 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Don't buy if you live in Canada, November 5, 2012
I purchased this watch last week in a store in Quebec City, and it simply did not work. Why?

The only signal station for North America is located in Denver, Colorado, and has a reception range of APPROXIMATIVELY 3000kms. Even though Quebec is located at 2800kms from Denver, the watch never, not a single time, received a radio signal. And yet, this watch is for sale in several stores across the city...

It does not work in this area. Period. And yet dealers sell it.
Eco-Drive is a good and reliable technology, I own one for almost ten years now. That is not the problem.
The problem is the radio-controlled technology, that won't work across North America, because there are not enough signal stations. So, even if Citizen's radio-controlled watches are sold in your area, make sure to test it before buying. Otherwise, you may have a bad surprise.
Comment Comments (8) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jul 10, 2014 10:18 PM PDT

Herman Miller Embody Chair: Fully Adj Arms - Graphite Frame/Base - Standard Carpet Casters
Herman Miller Embody Chair: Fully Adj Arms - Graphite Frame/Base - Standard Carpet Casters
Offered by OfficeDesigns
Price: $1,429.00
3 used & new from $1,328.97

11 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The chair I should have bought first, February 24, 2012
I have the Embody for 6 months now and quite frankly, I just cannot understand how some people find this chair uncomfortable. This is the best chair I ever sat in. I spend 3 hours a day on average in it, in my home office, and this is the fifth office chair I try. Embody is most certainly the last office chair I will buy and it should have been the first chair I bought.

Like many people, when time came to furnish my home office, I thought that spending 1000$ on an office chair was like throwing money out of the window. So I started with a 100$ chair from Office Depot, which proved to be the worst sitting experience of my whole life. Then started the long pursuit for comfort with a 200$ chair, followed by a 300$ and a 500$ one, a mesh chair that was a kind of Aeron copy. None proved to be up to it in the long run. And finally came the Embody, the chair I should have bought first, because it would have saved me money.

And come on, adjusting the Embody isn't rocket science... I have nothing to complain about the fabric (Rythm textile in my case). The chair isn't unduly heavy, as some reviewers suggest, and it feels strongly built. The only small drawback I can find on this chair are the seat depth handles, whose design could be improved IMHO.

So if you seriously consider buying a true ergonomic chair, go for the Embody. You won't regret it.

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