Reviews

The Lumaray FL12-RX LED Flashlight Review

It’s hard to believe that this will be my fourth Lumaray LED flashlight review, but it’s true. Every time Lumaray releases a new light, I have to wonder what they could possibly do to improve upon their past version, but each time they manage to surprise and impress me. Let’s take a trip down memory lane, shall we? First there was the FL6, an intensely bright six LED flashlight that borrowed its good looks from a science fiction movie’s prop…


The Brando USB MP3 Player + SD/MMC Card Reader Review

If you haven’t yet succumbed to the Apple iPod shuffle, then you might be interested in taking a look at another flash-based MP3 player that not only costs less, it can be configured to carry significantly more music for the same amount of money. I’m talking about the Brando USB MP3 Player + SD/MMC Card Reader, a device which shares one major trait with the shuffle – no LCD screen. No, the Brando version doesn’t have a stylish aluminum skin,…


The Ultimate Theft Alert v3 Review

Ultimate Theft Alert is an application that runs hidden in the background and monitors the SIM card in your Windows Mobile Phone Edition device. It is designed to send an SMS message from your phone in the event that the SIM card is changed. Installation is just like a regular Windows Mobile application, but configuration requires a little digging in File Explorer. You will not find any shortcuts for UTA in any menu on your device. It runs stealthily in…


The Presto Service and HP Printing Mailbox Review – Part One

My ex’s grandfather is 88 years old. Papa, as we call him, was stationed in Pearl Harbor and Saipan during World War II, and to this day he won’t ride a plane because of experiences during the war. This means that he doesn’t travel anywhere unless it is accessible by car or rail. Papa has three children, eight grandchildren, and six great-grandchildren, and they live in various places around the country. He does not have a computer and to the…


The Logitech Harmony 890 Universal Remote Control Review

Well, I did it. I didn’t think I would, at least for a while, but I did it. I bought the big screen LCD TV, I bought the DVD player, I bought the AV receiver and home theater speakers, and I ordered digital cable. It was a sad day for my wallet, but a happy day for me. It’s something that I’ve always wanted – a top notch mini home theater of my own. I soon found out that there…


The Belkin Folio Kickstand Case for Zune Review

As many of you know, I bought a Zune shortly after they became available. While it has managed to stay amazingly scratch-free due to its durable casing material, I still don’t feel comfortable letting it roll around in the bottom of my bag. Shortly after it arrived, the hunt for a good case was on! One of the cases that caught my attention was the Belkin Folio Kickstand Case for Zune. Unlike a case that will just hold and protect…


The Belkin Concealed Surge Protector Review

I could whine about the fact that my elderly home doesn’t have enough electrical outlets for all my gadgets, but the fact is that even a newer house probably wouldn’t have enough outlets in the exact places where I would need or want them. Add to that problem a pressing need for surge protection, and it becomes obvious that a power-strip of some kind would be my best solution. But which one? Let’s look past the ancient six-plug power strip…


The Brando 1GB USB Flash Card Review

Some days it seems as if I have seen just about every form a USB flash memory device could take, but every now and then a product will come along and make me think “hey, that was a great idea!” The Brando USB Flash Card is just such an item. Measuring 3.4″ long x 2.1″ wide x 0.15″ thick, the USB Flash Card is the exact size of a credit card, and the approximate thickness of three. The USB Flash…


The EXIM Screen Protector Review

Ever since I applied my first screen protector on my XDA II Mini I have been hooked. Since then, I have purchased a screen protector for every device I own, from PDAs, to phones, iPods and cameras. I have only ever used one brand of screen protector and I have not yet found any reason to change. That brand is EXIM. I have found these screen protectors to be excellent in all areas, including durability, clarity and application. My latest…


The Cowon A2 Personal Media Player Review

This has been a very, very difficult review for me to write. Most gadgets, I find I either like them, or dislike them, or just feel kind of “eh” about them. The Cowon A2, on the other hand, arouses some pretty powerful conflicting feelings in me. I’ll try to give you all a full idea why throughout the review, but the bottom line for me with this device is, I’m totally conflicted, and there is no bottom line. So read…


The HTC Star Trek / Qtek 8500 WM5 Smartphone Review

It’s been a little over a month since I received a Qtek 8500, HTC‘s first clamshell phone which runs the Windows Mobile 5 Smartphone operating system. Unlike some of the other Smartphone OS devices available, such as the Dash and the Q, which attempt to “be all and do all” without the benefit of a touch screen and the full Pocket PC operating system, this is one model that appears to be happy just being a smart phone. Phone first,…


The Belkin Clamp-On Surge Protector Review

As you are a reader of Gear Diary, it’s pretty likely that your house is something like mine–an impossible flood of electronic gizmos, gadgets, and geegaws, both portable, and not, but all requiring a simply astonishing amount of plug-in space for wall current.? Around our stereo area it can get bad, sure; the receiver, TV, VCR, DVD, TiVo box, satellite box, etc; you need some hefty power strippage to deal with it. But for me where it gets really bad…


The i.Tech Virtual Keyboard Unboxing

The i.Tech Bluetooth Virtual Keyboard has been on my list of must-try items ever since I first heard about it – which if I remember correctly was in 2003! The first time I saw pictures of a keyboard which worked by beaming a red laser display on any flat surface, my inner geek did a happy dance! This is a product that looks like came straight out of a Philip K. Dick novel, out of a Star Trek episode, out…


The Skullcandy MFM MP3 Integrated Stereo Headphones Review

I’d be the first to admit that I have never been snowboarding. I’m such a klutz that it takes very little imagination to picture me lying flat on my face in the snow or worse – lying broken at a tree’s base. So would it make me a total poseur if I said that I am intrigued by much of the snowboarder’s gear I’ve seen on the web? Of all the sports, they seem to have the coolest musically integrated…


The Vaja MiniSD x2 Case Review

A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of reviewing a Vaja case for my O2 XDA Atom. As we often do, Judie and I were chatting online about Vaja’s cases, and she described them as “yummy” when it came to their deep leather scent. I laughed this off, but after experiencing their case’s wonderful aroma for myself, I can tell you that they indeed do smell yummy! It goes beyond the scent, though. These cases are just outstanding and…


All About the Treo 680

[Ed. note: This unboxing with comments was written and translated by Michael Lin (“puttingdog”) and posted on the Palm is Life Forum. The original Chinese version with larger pictures may be seen here. Gear Diary would like to thank Michael for making his pictures and commentary available to an English Speaking audience and Larry for obtaining Michael’s permission to re-post in English.] The Palm Treo 680… My first impression: why does it take so long just to turn on the…


The High-Powered Green Laser 10mW Review

[Ed. Note: If you have one, be responsible when you play with your laser.] Powerful lasers, a thing that only used to be found in sci-fi movies and TV shows and in the arsenal of the military. Who would have known that in the early 21st century that ordinary citizens would be able to buy pocket sized powerful lasers capable of burning things and throwing a visible beam for great distances. Yes, the day has arrived that anyone can buy…


The SkinIt Review

Not long ago I was asked if I would like to try SkinIt, a protective and colorful way to personalize many popular consumer electronic items with custom vinyl overlays. Of course I wanted to give them a try, but the art choices were almost overwhelming…and then there was the decision of which gadgets to skin. SkinIt makes overlays for mobile phones, digital musical players, laptops, gaming devices, and various other gear. In the end, I wound up choosing the Asterisk…


The ThinkGeek USB Snowbot Review

Oh the winter holidays are here again. I was feeling festive this year and was planning on buying one of them light up USB Snowmen from ThinkGeek to bring some holiday cheer to my computer workstation. What? was my reaction when searching the ThinkGeek website, no USB Snowman to be found. Oh well, maybe they will have them again soon. Then a couple of days later… on the front page of their website was revealed the ThinkGeek exclusive USB Snowbot!…


The Purosol Plasma Molecular Screen Cleaner Review

Have you got a filthy television or computer screen lurking somewhere in the house? I do, or rather, I did. While my laptop’s screen is usually kept as spotless as possible – because I am obsessive like that – Sarah’s looks like it has been pulling weekend duty in a public library. Those that hate fingerprinted screens might want to cover their eyes…this is a scary, scary sight… 😯 That’s why when I was approached about trying the new Purosol…


The Palm Treo 650 Speaker Fix

[Ed. note: Larry originally wrote this article for the Palm Is Life forum, but he has also translated it for posting here. To see this article in the original Chinese, click here. Happy Hacking!] When the Palm Treo 650 launched, it came with an earpiece issue; its speaker sound was too low for regular people to hear. How bad is it? Well, you could clearly hear the caller’s voice in a quiet room, but you probably couldn’t hear a honeybee…