Search This Site

 

 

You can help fund Techmoan with a donation on Patreon

Click to visit Patreon.com/Techmoan  

 

IMPORTANT NOTICE for COMPANIES

 Techmoan never approaches companies asking for sample products to review.

 


Articles by Category

    

Pick of the Camera Reviews

(Click the pictures for reviews & links) 

ACTION CAMS

Yi 2 - Best Budget 4K

 

 

Gitup Git2 (My Pick)

 

Xiaomi Yi

Dazzne P2

SJCAM M10+
 
DASH-CAMS (CAR DVRs)
 
A119
MINI CAMERAS
(The Mobius also works as a dashcam)
Mobius
Polaroid Cube+

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 a couple.

 

 

 

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%! 

            

 
Friday
Apr032009

TURBO 264HD Software Upgrade 1.0.1 Now Available

Well Elgato seem on the ball with the Turbo 264HD. The first update to the software is out and it contains some interesting upgrades and fixes.

I'm going to go and experiment with that MKV support now....

Here are the release notes...


What's new in Turbo.264 HD 1.0.1?


MKV Support


Turbo HD now supports MKV files with the following audio and video formats, without the need for additional QuickTime components to be installed:


Video:  H.264, MPEG-4, MPEG-2 and MPEG-1


Audio:  AC-3, MPEG-2 and MPEG-1


For MKV files with other audio and video formats, Turbo can still convert the files, but additional QuickTime components are required to decode the files.


Inline Editing of File Names



Titles can now be edited in Turbo HD.  Simply click the title of the video in the Turbo HD window to edit its name.  


The edited names are also used as chapter names when exporting multiple clips as a single file:


Files can also be reordered by selecting the file and dragging it to the desired location within the Turbo HD application window.


Bug Fixes



A USB connectivity problem while encoding has been resolved.


Fixed a problem that caused 16:9 exports from iMovie '09 to have a 4:3 aspect ratio.


Fixed a problem where some MPEG files over 100MB could not be added to the Turbo HD application.


Known Issues


Exports from iMovie ’09 with titles have artifacts.


Direct exports from iMovie’09 are currently not accelerated. To export an iMovie '09 project, please add the iMovie Event directly to the Turbo HD application.



UPDATE -  Here's my impressions so far.


It seems quite a bit quicker at loading in the clips to be converted, and overall conversion seems a touch snappier (but this might just be my imagination) - but definitely more stable.


I've tried converting a couple of MKV x264 movies and can confirm that this works well. If the file has DTS sound then the video converts but the sound is be missing, however if the MKV file has an AC3/DD5.1 soundtrack then it works fine.


So if, (for example) you downloaded an HD film in X264 format and wanted to play it on your TV rather than your computer, as long as it was had an AC3/Dolby Digital soundtrack you could convert it using the Turbo 264HD to a (stereo) MP4 file, put it on a USB memory stick and play it using a PS3 or 360 (both tested and confirmed). Conversion speed for me was about 25% better than realtime on the short clips I tried (e.g. 1.5 mins converted in just over 1 min).

Thursday
Apr022009

iPhone - a shortcut to Satan 

My cheapo Chinese iPhone extended battery case turned up today. Upon closer inspection the product's box art reveals a hidden feature of the iPhone that I was previously unaware of......







iphone-battery-boxsatan-pod

Thursday
Apr022009

Sony Unveils TG5 Camcorder with Magnetic Lens Attachment!

tg51

Please forgive me blowing my own trumpet here - I may be delusional, but I believe that my Blog may have affected a Sony product revision.

I am a big fan of the Sony TG3/TG1 - shortly after I got one of the first cameras in the UK, I decided that it needed a wide angle lens option, however without a screw thread mounting there was no easy way to attach one.

I made a post about my attempts to attach a magnetic lens to the camera in June 2008. This post has been read many thousands of times, the majority of views coming from links in forums from Japan and Hong Kong.

Well today Sony unveilled the revised TG5 camera at the end of their promo video (click the link)  they show a magnetic lens in a cradle being attached to the camera.  I like to think that my little blog had something to do with their decision to offer this option - it can't just be co-incidence can it?

tg5-lens2 Sony's TG5 Lens

my-tg3-lens My TG3 Lens

The Sony wide angle lens is the  VCL-HGE07TB and unfortunately its only designed for the TG5, not the earlier model.

I like the look of the new TG5. The TG1/TG3 was a perfect camera for me and the TG5 doesn't make any radical changes, just a few revisions. Here's what I've spotted besides it's headline GPS tagging feature.

Its thinner (just) and the corners have been rounded off. The power button appears to have gone - presumably opening and closing the screen are the only ways to toggle power now. It appears to have '16gb of built in memory' or does that mean it comes with a 16GB stick? The zoom control has been changed, hopefully it reduces wobble -   the jog wheel is a full circle now rather than being spring loaded.

tg5-rear11hdrtg3-rear1

The Operating System/menus seem completely different and the touchscreen seems more responsive.

The HDMI port has been removed from the camera and now exists on the cradle only.

I think they missed an opportunity by not upping the Still Image resolution, its only 4 megapixel. The stills on my TG3 are pretty poor. It would be nice not to have to carry around a still camera as well any more.

The changes aren't significant enough to make me upgrade - but if for some reason my TG3 broke, I would go and get the new model without a second thought.

Sony, if you are reading this (v.unlikely) and you did add the Magnetic lens because of user feedback initiated by this blog - Thanks for listening.

UPDATE - Euro model is called the TG7 - Sony press release

LINK TO MY 2008 POST ABOUT MY HDR-TG1 /HDR-TG3 MAGNETIC LENS.

SEE VITAL AND IMPORTANT UPDATE ABOUT USING THE LENS ON A TG1 OR TG3 HERE

Oh and its not magnetic after all - all will be revealed if you click to see the updated info in the link above.

Thursday
Mar262009

Elgato Turbo.264 HD. Hands on user test and review.

Elgato have sold the Turbo.264 for a couple of years now - but until now it only handled SD resolutions. The new  Turbo.264 HD handles resolutions all the way up to 1080p, but is it worth the £140 asking price? - Read on to find out.

elgato-turbo-264-hd

Anyone with an HD camcorder will tell you that editing AVCHD video is a hellish nightmare.

The camcorder manufacturers don't tell you this - they pretend that its all drag and drop. The glossy adverts show someone fresh off the ski slopes still garbed in their woollen hat watching their morning's antics on the TV. Now this is all well and good and is actually possible if you only want to watch everything you shot, in sequence, through the camcorder itself. However, if you want to edit down your footage (like everyone should) then it is more than likely that the snow will have melted long before you'll see your finished compilation.

I'm no pro camcorder user - just your average schmuck. I just shoot holiday footage on a normal consumer camcorder and edit the footage on my Macbook using iMovie09. In the days of DV tape this meant waiting whilst the footage was transferred in real time down the firewire lead to the Mac, but after that it was plain sailing. If I had four hours of tapes, it would take approx four hours to get that footage into the editing program - then the editing time - then another hour or two to export it as a DVD.

Flash memory HD cameras arrived on the scene with the promise of immediate access to any scene and drag and drop file transfer. This sounded quicker - however when it comes to HD  it can be much, much slower.

AVCHD is a very compressed format that requires some serious horsepower to decode. iMovie can't edit it natively and therefore the files have to be converted to a more edit-friendly format.To facilitate this, iMovie converts them to the Apple Intermediate Codec (AIC). This converted footage is a much larger, more verbose file - from my experience 6 times larger than the source file. It is relatively easy for the Mac to edit and play the AIC files. Once the editing is complete the user then generally exports the finished movie to another format - usually some kind of MP4 file.

To give you some idea of the problems I encountered with editing AVCHD I need to share a few numbers with you.

I shoot my video with a Sony HDR-TG3 (aka TG1 in the rest of the world) If I use an 8GB Memory stick it can store a maximum of 55 minutes of AVCHD footage at a resolution of 1920x1080i .

My Macbook (2.2ghz 4GB late 2007) model takes approx 2 hours to convert an 8GB stick of AVCHD footage into the Apple Intermediate Codec and in the process creates a folder taking up a massive 48GB of the hard drive to store the converted footage. That's if it doesn't crash somewhere along the way - which isn't entirely unusual.

The Turbo.264 HD's purpose is to speed everything up. It gets used at the beginning of the process and again at the end.

The procedure goes like this.....

Plug the Turbo.264 HD USB dongle in - run it's software - drag your AVCHD footage into it's window - and click to export it as an MP4 file.

Elgato Software

Then start up iMovie and import these MP4 files. iMovie is compatible with MP4 files and doesn't need to convert them to it's AIC format. Once editing has finished. the footage can be exported from iMovie using the special Elgato Turbo.264 HD encoding codec and USB dongle's processing power.

So what kind of improvements can be expected - well as always, mileage will vary based on your Mac but here are my results.

I started with a full 8GB memory stick from my recent holiday. It contained 352 clips at 1920x1080i resolution.

Without Turbo.264 HD


  • Import 8GB into iMovie09 @ 1920x1080i:  2hrs

  • The Size of the AIC workfiles folder created on hard drive:  48GB

  • Export 3 minutes of footage from iMovie09 as MP4  @ 1920x1080:  17 mins


With Turbo.264 HD


  • Convert 8GB of files into 1920x1080p MP4 using Turbo 264 HD:  1hr 10 mins

  • Import these MP4's into iMovie09 @ 1920x1080i:  20 mins

  • Size of workfiles folder created on hard drive:  2.6GB

  • Export 3 minutes of footage from iMovie09 as MP4  @ 1920x1080:  2 mins 15 secs


264 in action

Now bear in mind that my recent three week holiday generated 40GB (5 hrs) of unedited AVCHD video and you can appreciate the amount of time and space that can be saved by using the Turbo.264 HD. It actually saves me hours rather than minutes of rendering/conversion time. That 40GB would expand by a factor of 6 when converted to the AIC - that's 240GB of files (on top of the 40GB I've already used) and that's a lot of disk space to have free. The Turbo.264 would convert that 40GB of AVCHD into under 15GB of Highdef MP4 files.

One very useful feature of the Turbo.264  HD is it's ability to import just the .MTS files generated by the camcorder. iMovie 09 normally insists on the entire memory stick structure being complete before it will entertain importing any AVCHD files. This makes archiving of the original camcorder footage very difficult. Ideally you would want to just drag all the MTS files off your memory cards into a folder on your Mac so you could reuse the card. You could then import all the files at the same time instead of one memory stick at a time - the Turbo 264 HD finally allows you to do this.

The software provided with the Turbo.264 HD also has a number of additional useful functions. When importing footage you can actually play each AVCHD clip first to determine whether you want to include it in the conversion to MP4 process. The software also offers rudimentary editing of the footage by choosing a start and end point for each clip. It can then export these individually or combine the clips into one movie. If that is all the control you need, you can forget iMovie etc and just use the Elgato software on its own for a quick and easy editing and authoring solution. Predefined export formats include iPod, iPhone, Apple TV, PSP, 720p, 1080p - and these can be customised further too.

As I mentioned previously, my Sony TG3 records in 1920x1080i. The choice is to convert this to either a 720p or 1080p MP4. My Sony has a very small lens so there was very little noticeable image quality difference between the 720p and 1080p conversions. The 720p appeared slightly lightened/washed out so I used the darker 1080p video. The conversion seemed to take the same time for both resolutions anyway

There are of course a couple of niggles with the Elgato software (it is version 1.0) The ability to select multiple/all of the clips to effect  batch changes to the output format would be top of my improvements list [EDIT - See first comment for how to do this] and playing back the individual AVCHD clips sometimes behaved strangely.

The biggest problem I've experienced is that after about 40 mins of conversion,  the Turbo.264 HD USB stick gets red hot and then the Mac pops up a message to say  the device has been unplugged.  To sort this out I had to unplug it and give it  5 mins to cool down and then the conversion could continue  where it left off . This is a pretty significant limitation as it means means that I can't leave the Turbo.264HD unattended to convert all my 40gb of footage in one go. I suggest that constructing the USB dongle's case out of  sealed plastic might not have been the smartest idea - an aluminium or vented case might have helped with cooling. Perhaps the software should be updated to automatically pause for a breather every half hour - then it could be left running all day. (These comments have been deleted - see why at the end of this post)

closeup

In conclusion - if you are editing AVCHD on a Mac then the Turbo.264 HD has the potential to make it a lot easier. Without this device, editing AVCHD video is a frustrating and unpleasant experience. I've always had to spend days to import my camcorder footage one stick at a time - returning to the Mac every few hours to swap memory sticks and restart the import process. I could  never be confident that iMovie  wouldn't have crashed when I returned. This also necessitated leaving the computer and external hard drive powered up and running at full throttle for long periods of time. With the 264 HD I can skip past many hours of waiting and more quickly get down to the fun process of actually editing the footage.

The drastically reduced disk space required for the imported footage means that I didn't really need to get that 1.5TB USB drive to hold my temporary AIC video files after all. If the Turbo.264 HD had come out a couple of months earlier it could actually have paid for itself by enabling me to avoid this unnecessary hard drive purchase.   I've found that editing MP4 files is a more stable and responsive process than handling the larger AIC files and overall my editing experience has been completely transformed by this tiny device.

It's not cheap - but  to many people it will be worth every penny, especially for those who value their sanity.

I consider the Turbo 264HD  to be an essential purchase for anyone editing AVCHD footage on their Mac.

I got mine delivered direct from Elgato @ www.Elgato.com

UPDATE - My overheating Turbo 264HD appears to be a one-off,  no one else on the Elgato forums is reporting similar issues, so I'm going to get it replaced and I'll report back. It should also be mentioned that at the moment there is a known fault that prevents export direct from iMovie09. The problem should be rectified with the next software update. The Elgato team are aware and they should be congratulated for being very hands-on and responsive. The official forums are a useful resource for information and assistance for their users.

UPDATE 2 - Sure enough my Turbo 264HD was faulty after all. I've received a replacement unit that doesn't overheat. So don't worry about this issue when deciding whether to buy one. Oh, and while I'm here, I should mention that I've spotted the 264HD on the shelves in the Apple stores recently, so if you are near a store you can pick one up instead of buying mail order.

UPDATE 3 - Make sure you read the comments - there are some links in there to some test footage in 720p using the various deinterlace options. These might help you decide if the Turbo264HD would be useful for you.

Thursday
Feb262009

The Muppet Whatnot Workshop Experience

As mentioned in an earlier post, whilst in New York recently I went to FAO Schwarz and got a custom Muppet built to my specifications in their Muppet Whatnot Workshop.

muppet2

I (like most people I saw) decided to try to recreate myself in Muppet form.

The system is a lot like creating a Mii – albeit with a reduced choice of options. In a way this is a good thing, because it encourages a bit of imagination or artistic licence – but it also means that your end result is a bit of a compromise between your initial vision and the items available.

The process goes like this…..

You tell the person manning the counter that you want to create a Muppet (I told them that I wanted two). They tell you that they cost $130 each (at this point I tried to pretend that this wasn’t a surprise - but it was a bit more than I expected). They also tell you how long it will take (depends on how many they already have to make). The store person then opens a sealed package containing a kit and hands it to you.

Inside the kit are three glossy cards each showing a  different head shape – each one a different colour.

blank-muppets1

The other cards contain vinyl cling stickers (non adhesive). These are the eyes, noses, hair and outfits.

muppet-stickers1muppet-mockup2

After choosing your head type you can then start experimenting by sticking different features to the card. If you find it hard to visualize how some of these will look in ‘real life’ it's not a problem as every single variation is displayed on a wall of muppets next to the counter.

muppet1

When you are happy with your configuration you copy your choices across to an order sheet by ticking the appropriate boxes and present this to the cashier.

They then type all your choices into the till, take your payment and give you your receipt.muppet-order-sheet3

I was then offered the choice of watching my Muppet being made (which happens on a table behind the counter) or take a buzzer and wander the shop until it was complete. I could imagine what gluing a few pieces of foam together looks like, so I chose to wander the shop for 20 mins. Whilst doing this I quickly realised that nothing else in the store interested me, without the Muppets I wouldn’t have spent a penny. Obviously a toy shop isn’t a place meant for a 38yr old chap with no children. However The Muppets and Sesame Street hold a special place in the memories of people my age and as a result,  FAO Schwarz should do very well with their exclusive agreement. The cost and the scarcity of their stores should mean this remains a long running desirable treat rather than a quick over-exposed flash in the pan. Muppets never come in or go out of fashion and there is no technology to go out of date.

When it comes to picking the Muppet up, it is packaged in a clear plastic drawstring bag. The Muppet is supplied with a metal stick to articulate its hand – just like a ‘real’ one, this can be inserted into either of the Muppet wrists in a special eyeloop. photo-1

The clear bag is a very smart idea. I walked back to my Manhattan hotel with this bag slung over a shoulder and the Muppet on display looking backwards out of the bag at the people following me. At each crosswalk I could hear the people behind discussing it – telling each other where to buy one etc. A security guard in a shop asked me how much they were. By carrying this one through town I probably sold another ten.

So now I have a Muppet, Its something I've wanted for more than 30 years and it serves no function other than to make me smile every time I see it.

muppetts

Wednesday
Feb182009

Nintendo DS Cake

I'm back in the UK - Spotted this in Sainsburys.....

cake3
Saturday
Feb142009

Sony Centre NY

Went to the Sony centre in New York today. A few pics to share. A 70" $20,000 TV, the Vaio P next to the 11" Oled TV. The webbie cameras (felt nasty cheap) and the PRS-700 e-book. Critics are right about that screen glare, it's pretty poor-the PRS505 was on display next to it and looked miles better.





Saturday
Feb142009

Small update

Been out of the country for a few weeks on a cruise round the Caribbean. I'm now in New York for 3 days and thought it's time for a small update via iPhone.
I've a picture of a Cylon toaster from the NBC Store and a couple of pics of the Nintendo Famicom prototype from the Nintendo store. Oh and the coolest thing ever, in FAO Schwartz you can get a Muppet made up to your specs from a pick list of options - a bit like a mii. Me and the missus tried to make a lookalike muppet each.





Tuesday
Jan202009

A smartly designed four plug mains adaptor

If your situation is anything like mine, the chances are that you don't have enough plugs in your house to power all your equipment. There are two ways to solve this problem,

i)  Get an electrician, plasterer, and decorator around to your house to install a raft of additional mains outlets 

ii) Use mains adaptors.

Rather obviously, my house is therefore full of mains adaptors of various shapes and sizes. Most of these are less than perfect. Some of the common options are...

1) The traditional three outlet plug - Stick out from the wall a long way, sometimes hard to get bulky adaptors to fit, and messy to look at with all the plugs having different orientations.

three plug no switch

2) A recent update on the traditional three outlet plug - with the useful ability to switch individual outlets on/off - same drawbacks as the standard 3 plug adaptor.

Three Plug With Switches

3) A trailing gang plug adaptor - this one is a four plug model, they tend to take up a lot of room and need some floor space.

Trailing 4 Gang

4) My recent purchase. This one was from Morrisons supermarket and cost £4.99.

4 gang wall mount switched

The things I like about this one is that it powers four devices, all are individually switched, it stays pretty snug to the wall and the plugs are all sensibly spaced with the the orientation keeping the cables tidy. 

p1030331p10303321

I know that plug adaptors aren't something that people normally discuss - but I thought I'd make an exception on this occasion because I was so impressed with this simple solution to an old problem.
Saturday
Jan172009

Unannounced Hitachi HV565E 1080i Camcorder revealed

Looking through the Argos catalogue that just came out today( 17 Jan 09) , I spotted a new HD Camcorder that doesn't appear to have been announced anywhere.

565e

It is the Hitachi HV565E and it looks virtually identical to the Sanyo HD700 - which also appears in the same catalogue. The Hitachi is 1080i @ £117.39 whereas the Sanyo is 720p @ £293.39. If the specs are accurate - this Hitachi looks like an absolute steal.  A 5x Optical Zoom on a pocket camera with 1080i HD  - makes this one look like an attractive option for those who need a pocket HD cam that offers  a bit more creative control than the  Vado or Mino HD alternatives.

The specs are as follows


  • 5 x optical zoom.

  • 4 x digital zoom.

  • CMOS processor.

  • 2.5in LCD screen.

  • Manual focus.

  • High definition recording.

  • Upto 200 minutes recording time dependant on SD card.

  • Recording format H.264

  • Computer format USB 2.

  • SD memory card slot.

  • AV output.

  • Accessories include strap, USB cable, software, manual, AC adaptor and case.

  • Battery level indicator.

  • 5m pixels camera.

  • 1080i high definition.

  • Premier lens.

  • 32Mb built in memory.

  • Rechargeable battery.

  • Webcam function.

  • PictBridge compatibility.

  • Weight 162g.

  • Size (H)12.1, (W)4.08, (D)5.85cm.


CLICK HERE FOR A LINK TO THE PRODUCT

UPDATE---- Ok mystery solved. I've done a bit more digging and I've found out it is a Sanyo. In the US it's sold as the Sanyo VPC-HD100 and it seems to be a Walmart exclusive.

hd100-hv565e

It gets some very mixed reviews on the Walmart product feedback page as well as on Steves Digicams . Judging by a number of the comments, quality control does not appear to be Sanyo's  strong point. You can also find some  test clips on Vimeo that should be useful.

I still think that it isnt a bad camera for the money - the clips I've viewed  seem to outperform the Mino/Vado/Zi6 and it is the only one with an optical zoom.  It'll be interesting to see how the Sony Webbie range compares in price and quality when/if they reach the UK.

Tuesday
Jan132009

Pico Apple Connection Kit - It's finally available

 

Pico Apple Connectivity Kit

So I finally managed to get my hands on the Optoma Pico iPod/iPhone Connectivity kit.

The iPhone 3G is very hard to connect to AV equipment. The old iPods used to output the video through the headphone socket, the newer ones and the iPhone 3G output the video through the dock connector. Until recently third party leads worked with some models, but following a recent firmware update the iPhones will only work with the official Apple leads.

To connect an iPhone to the Pico you therefore needed a whole mess of wires - until now. The Optoma Apple connectivity kit is now finally available to buy (a number of weeks after the projector was released). The kit comprises of a dock socket  to 3.5mm jack socket converter dongle and a 1 metre 3.5mm to 2.5mm plug lead with an inline volume control. Its a very tidy solution - and the considerable difference between the portability of the two options can be seen in the picture below 

p1030257

The dock dongle also has a weird socket that purports to be a USB charger socket (to pass through to the iPhone). After investigation it appears this is  a Micro USB socket - which is a strange choice. I have plenty of Mini USB leads around the house, but nothing I own uses the Micro USB standard and there is no lead included in the box.

Another strange thing about the dock dongle is that if the iPhone is in any state other than completely shut down then a blue led on the dongle lights up - this of course means that some power is being drained, even when the iPhone is in standby and the projector is shut off.

Dock Donglep1030300

p1030274In line volume

There is not much to review here - it works exactly as it should. Everything plugs together firmly and the inline control adjusts the volume.

The big bombshell about this product is the price - looking at the pieces you'd assume that the whole lot cost £5. Well mine cost me about £30 - and that's pretty ridiculous.

Would you pay £30 for this? Would you pay £30 for this? This device isn't a specific Pico product - it's a third party dock to 3.5mm av socket accessory with a patch lead. Perhaps the cost is to do with the Apple authentication chip - or maybe they have found a way around this protection and are just fleecing early adopters. It might be prudent to wait a while to see if any far eastern accessory makers can come up with an alternative . If you can't wait, and you can afford it then this works perfectly and it is a very compact and tidy solution. Available from various online PC component retailers - e.g.  PC-Stop

p1030287

 

 

 

Update 23 Jan 09 - I managed to get hold of a suitable charging cable off Ebay. It turns this needs a USB A to 4 pin Mini-B cable - I've never even seen one of these before - pic below.

usb-minib