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ACTION CAMS

Yi 2 - Best Budget 4K 

Gitup Git2 (My Pick)

Xiaomi Yi

Dazzne P2

SJCAM M10+
 
DASH-CAMS (CAR DVRs)
 
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Yi

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Mobius (also works as a Dashcam)
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Sena Prism Tube

My favourite USB battery power Pack

This is the excellent USB power pack I use when I travel.

2 x 2.1amp outputs. 8400mAh capacity.

Two digit Led display shows battery level

 

What SD CARD should I buy?

If you want an SD Card for your camera - these are the ones I use and recommend. 

I'd strongly recommend not to buy any SD cards off ebay - I've heard about too many issues with counterfeit cards - often sold on by unwitting resellers. My inbox regularly gets messages from people who bought a £150 camera then cheaped out and bought a £3 memory card on ebay - Then when it doesn't worth they blame the camera! It doesn't make any sense. Good memory is cheaper than it's ever been - see the links above.

A lot of HD cameras will not work properly with cards larger than 32GB (cards over 32GB are usually SDXC rather than the SDHC standard used by 32GB cards. SDXC cards use the ex-FAT system rather than FAT32 - in short they are a different standard). - so don't just buy the biggest card you can afford - read the specs in the manual to see what it accepts.

UK & US LINKS & PRICES BELOW

RECOMMENDED CARDS (for action cams - see dashcams below)

CLASS 10 UHS-1 CARDS (For HD Cameras)

 

U3 CARD (For 4K cameras)

 

 

SPECIAL DASHCAM CARDS

The SD card in a dashcam is re-written over, more frequently than in other types of cameras. Some manufacturers void their guarantee if an SD card was used in a dashcam. So, no surprise, there are special High Endurance SD cards made just for dashcams...here's some.

 

VERY IMPORTANT. These links take you to the product, however Amazon have three different ways of selling. There's Amazon Direct - This means that you are only dealing with Amazon themselves, then there's other sellers that use Amazon's facilities - these show as Fulfilled By Amazon and finally there's Market Place sellers that advertise on Amazon, but operate independently.  I strongly recommend that you only use the first...the Amazon Direct - Sold By Amazon option. Even if it appears that you are paying a couple of £/$ more it is more than likely you are comparing the price of a real item against the price of a fake.

To give you an idea of the extent of the fake goods problem. In a 2016 survey by Apple - 90% of the 'Apple' chargers sold through Amazon - using the other the two methods..which includes the "Fulfilled by Amazon" option -  were found to be counterfeit....90%! 

 
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Sunday
Apr292012

The £50 Roku LT

£50 is an interesting price-point for an electronic device. There are a lot of things I will take a punt on at £50 that I would never consider if they cost £75 or more. In my opinion the Roku LT is definitely worth £50.

It's obvious that streaming media is going to play a massive part in the future of home entertainment. It's still early days, but home cable and fibre are already capable of offering a significant proportion of houses with the necessary broadband speeds that can support HD streaming video.

We're still at the nascent stage of Internet video networks, and it reminds me of the early days of satellite TV. I got my first satellite dish in the late 1980s and back then it was a wild-west of wildly variable quality programming provided by channels that were often available for viewing outside their intended audience areas. It took a few years, but inevitably the big companies took over, locked the content down and ramped up the costs.

Internet TV is still in it's wild-west period, there is a lot of junk out there with a few diamonds hidden amongst it. You might end up watching adverts for products you can't even buy in your country and the video quality varies wildly.

For people that don't share my memories of the early days of satellite TV, there is another analogy that might better explain how I feel about the Roku..... I'd imagine that most people will, as a child, have listened to a radio under the bed sheets late at night, sometimes tuning it to foreign stations, It really felt like you were listening to something secret or special. That was a memory that came flooding back today when I was watching KeyTV, a channel that as far as I can tell is intended to promote Key West's restaurants and activities to vacationers. The Roku is in a way like a Shortwave radio for Internet video.

Now if you wanted to keep it simple you could always just use the Roku for its BBC iplayer function, its good enough to buy it just for that one channel/app but then you'd be missing out on a whole world of video.

If you want a box that works well today and gives you a window into the future of home entertainment you should pick up a Roku. I can think of many worse things to spend £50 on, and I've got a loft full of stuff to prove it.

Here's the review

By the way, the USB to Type M Barrel 5V DC power cable that I mentioned in the video is still in the post, but I'll let you know if my plan to power the Roku using the TV USB socket it a success when it arrives. An update will appear here.

Update 4 May 2012..... Well my USB Cable to Type M Barrel 5V DC power lead turned up in the post and.....disappointingly it doesn't fit into the socket on the back of the Roku. The outer barrel is the right size, it's just the centre pin on the Roku is too thick to fit in the hole in the middle, so that experiment is over. As a number of people have pointed out, it's very likely that the Roku would have needed to draw more power than the USB would supply anyway, but it would have been nice to actually verify this....ho hum.

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Reader Comments (18)

PC USB ports are rated at 500mA (0.5A) so u might find issues if your box needs 1.5A

U can get dual input USB leads to get you up to 1A but not seen tripple leads...

Good luck..

April 29, 2012 | Unregistered Commentermatt

Thanks for the tip. Looks like I'll probably have to stick with the wall wart, but I'll give it a try when my leads turn up.

April 29, 2012 | Registered CommenterTechmoan

There's still a good chance it would work. A lot of times, manufacturers just use whatever chip is cheapest at the time of manufacturing for their AC adapters. It probably doesn't draw 1.5 Amps. I'm involved in the communities that mod game consoles (and make portables) and you see this sort of thing a lot with electronics.

April 30, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKyosho

Great review! Could you please provide a link to a retailer? The Roku website only list US states as possible delivery destinations.

April 30, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterbiggles1024

I usually get things like this from Amazon because I've got Amazon Prime.....but they currently only sell the £100 model, with the LT coming soon. So I bought it from an Amazon marketplace seller, they were quick and didn't charge for postage http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/aw/d/B007TTN0OI

April 30, 2012 | Registered CommenterTechmoan

My Roku LT came this morning from Amazon, could you explain how to get the American Ex-pat channels please?
Thanks.

May 2, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLo-couk

@Lo-couk No problem. First of a Disclaimer - Make sure you read the terms and conditions on the site as to who is allowed to watch these channels.
Then first register for an account here US TV Now

Then add the Roku Channel following the instructions here

...and if you are into that kind of thing then add the NowhereTV channel to your Roku - Channel Code H9DWC

also this is a good resource to get info on Roku Channels StreamTV

May 2, 2012 | Registered CommenterTechmoan

Thanks for yet another great review, Techmoan! I bought one that's a model between the two you mentioned, a ROKU XD. We'll see how it goes. :)

May 3, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMottikhan

I have a Roku here in the U.S. and mostly stream Netflix. The quality is pretty good and there usually is no lag. One nice thing is that I see more and more channels being offered whenever I check. Of course a large percentage are not worth watching unless you enjoy third rate production TV programs.

May 3, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDerick

Mine works well, although with the variety of programming on Dish, I hardly use the ROKU. There's more live TV than I could possibly watch and I don't care to spend that much time in front of the screen anyway.

I got the lifetime subscriptions to PlayOn and PlayLater with the ROKU. I might use them eventually and it was a good sale they were doing. Dish has a DVR built in, so PlayLater might be redundant. Still, it's a lifetime sub, so it'll probably come in handy. All in all, I think the ROKU is value for money as far as potential goes. I'll surely want to see a show I missed some day in the future.

May 26, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMottikhan

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