Reviews

The Proporta Advanced Screen Protector Review

[Ed. note: For this dually, Judie’s comments will be in Black, Mitchell’s comments will be in italicised Blue.] One of the first things I started worrying about when I unboxed the HTC Advantage was how I would keep the humongous 5″ diagonal screen from getting scratched. While it was nice that HTC included a screen protector in the box, I think you could probably tell by the expression on my face in the unboxing video that I wasn’t too impressed with it, and sure enough – once installed, I saw that my unenthusiastic response was warranted. Don’t get me wrong,…


The Prima Cases Review

If you’re particular about keeping your investment in smartphones safe and protected from accidental drops, the accessory market for cases is wide open for your particular functional style and tastes. I?m rather obsessed with keeping things in mint condition, such as my collection of seven thousand albums, with inner dust sleeves and jackets to protect the artwork of the covers. I even keep my small gadgets in Ziploc bags; thus I?m peculiar with keeping my phones in good condition whether it?s a basic Motorola Razr or Palm Treo 650 or 680. Prima Cases offers up a full line catalog of…


Brain School Review: Exercise for Your Brain

How many of us go to the gym on a regular basis? You know you should exercise you legs…your arms…even your pecs on a regular basis. Heck, you might even do some heart-smart cardio workouts. It is a great idea to keep your body in shape and healthy. While you are at the gym, however, do you ever hit those brutal memory machines, spatial sequencing machines, and other mental gymnastics? Oh, sorry. They don’t even have those at your gym, do they? Mine either. On every street corner, it seems there is a place to exercise your body, but almost…


SeV Performance Polo Review

Here is a dose of daily trivia for you, courtesy of Wikipedia: The polo style shirt that we all know and love was invented in 1929 by Ren Lacoste, the French 7-time Grand Slam tennis champion, as an alternative to the era’s “cumbersome and uncomfortable” tennis court attire. In the 1930s, polo players discovered the comfort of wearing the “Chemise Lacoste” versus their own overly formal field attire, and so the “tennis shirt” became known as the “polo shirt”, even among tennis players. Furthering the Polo connection, Ralph Lipschitz Lauren started his Polo line in 1967, which prominently featured his…


The BeyzaCASES Universal Leather Case Review

On the short list of accessories that Windows Mobile device owners need is a case. Cases not only protect your device but often put that device in a convenient and easy-to-access location (like your hip). In the not-to-distant past, most devices shipped with, at a minimum, a neoprene or vinyl slip case of some type. Unfortunately this has changed in recent years and now is more of an exception than a rule. A relative newcomer to providing cases for Windows Mobile devices is BeyzaCASES. The company, based in Istanbul, Turkey, provides a wide range of leather cases designed to custom…


DLO iPod Case(s) Review: Thou Must Protect Thy iPod

When I’m sitting down with friends discussing what?s on their iPod, I?m surprised to see a newly acquired iPod shopworn with scratches not only on the metal backside, but the screen as well. With the 30GB or 80GB video iPod starting at $349.00 USD, most forget to purchase the extra accessories that will protect an investment not only from normal wear and tear, but sticky soft drink spills and drops (oops). Digital Lifestyle Outfitters (DLO) offers a variety of cases and clips for the iPod. Set that Diet soft drink down far away from your iPod and take a look…


The HTC Advantage X7500 So Far…(a serial review)

I’ve been using the HTC Advantage for five days, which is definitely not long enough time to pass true judgement on the device, but it is enough time?to talk about some of my likes and dislikes. Ready? The screen is glorious…absolutely fabulous. 5″ of diagonal goodness that is clearer, and easier to read from, than any other available Windows Mobile Device. If a lot of screen isn’t important to you because you aren’t reading eBooks, editing documents or entering data in a spreadsheet, then you will most likely be turned off by the overall size of the device. With the…


RoadWired Cable Stable Review

I regularly commute to work with my laptop in tow, so I am always on the lookout for new solutions to carry my gadgets, accessories, trinkets and gizmos. My latest stop found me at the RoadWired Deluxe Cable Stable, an impressive looking gear bag, which features an assortment of pockets, cords, loops and cubbies to tie down and secure everything you need to support your mobile habits. For ease of access, the Cable Stable unzips on three sides, to lie flat when open, revealing a plethora of flexible spaces in which to store your gear. Although it is called the…


If It Has Leaves Three, Leave It Be or If Nobody Else Will Do It, Chris’ll Review It

Regular readers of GearDiary.com know that we have a very talented team of reviewers here. What you may not realize is that there is sort of an unspoken pecking order among the team members about who gets to do which review. For instance, if the product has four wheels or a screen bigger than 19″, you can bet Judie is gonna write the review. If it is the latest, most technologically advanced PDA or phone, Clinton and Mitchell are the “go-to” guys. Allen is a real gearhead when it comes to games and gadgets. If it is whimsical or might…


A Pair of Jacks: Samsung BlackJack and i600 Review

The Samsung BlackJack has been a runaway success over in the United States which doesn?t surprise me at all. Thin, light, black, it covers all the bases. A gorgeous and comparatively large high-res screen, thumboard, and some 3G has been thrown in for good measure. The BlackJack has just recently arrived here in Australia, and when Samsung agreed to loan me one for review I was very excited. My Treo is (or now I should say was) a great Smartphone, but these days with a design like that it is simply too fat. As I read recently about the Motorola…


Mood Wrapz: Groovy, Dudez.

Sometimes the best definition of a gadget is something cool that you never knew existed. But once you find out about it, you have to have it. Even though you don’t need it at all. Mood Wrapz are that kind if product. Known as “a mood ring for your iPod, MP3 player, or cell phone,” Mood Wrapz are a great flashback to the 70’s for those of us caught between the LP and iPod generations. Besides a some minimal scratch protection, they are just the sort of fun accessory that serve absolutely no purpose other than to draw attention to…


The ThermaClear Heat Enabled Acne Treatment Device Review

Well, here I go again…tripping merrily into “Too Much Information” land, so that I can tell you all about a product which most females over 21 wouldn’t want to admit needing, much less using. It’s okay though, I don’t embarrass easily. So the deal is that I occasionally get painful pimples which can best be described as “cystic”. They aren’t whiteheads because they don’t get that distinctive white tip common to that type acne, and they aren’t blackheads either. They consist of a raised red bump which is tender when touched; and if I were to be so impulsive as…


The Skinny on the Crumpler Medium Skivvy Laptop Bag Review

I carry my laptop with me just about everywhere I go (let’s face it when you ride the train for an hour each way, you need something to entertain you). Because my laptop is such a critical part of my daily routine, I am always looking for new and improved ways to carry it. Anything which will lighten my load and carry all of the pieces, parts, peripherals and do-dads is welcome in my house. So, needless to say, I my interest was piqued when Judie asked me to review the Crumpler Skivvy, an extremely nice looking bag. My first…


The LTB 5.1 USB Headphones Review

Up until 3 months ago when I would play computer games (like Call of Duty 2 and Counter Strike) using just a normal pair of earbuds, which worked fine, but I wanted something a little better. LTB produce a pair of 5.1 headphones that connect up over USB, and they sent me a pair to try out. Included in the box are the headphones, USB-to-3.5mm adaptor, driver CD and manual. There was a second driver CD taped to the outside of the box with newer drivers, but I just downloaded the latest ones (for Windows) of their website. The headphones…


The Belkin Compact Surge Protector Review

Can you ever have enough electrical outlets in your home office? Perhaps – if you had a hand in designing their layout when your house was built. But for those of us who weren’t even born when our homes were built, deciding which devices get powered – and where it will happen – can be a never-ending balancing act; ensuring that the devices which are plugged into the walls are protected from power surges only adds to the fun. We’ve covered other Belkin surge protectors here in the past, including the Clamp-On and the Concealed; now we’ll take a look…


The Crumpler 7 Million Dollar Home Photography Bag Review

If you are at work when you read this review, do not – and I repeat, do not – click on the Crumpler link until you’ve turned your computer’s speakers way down. With that said, you just haven’t lived until you’ve clicked on the site and experienced the unintelligible hillbilly yodeling which could have made it onto the Deliverance soundtrack! Using your mouse to slide the pig, devil, horse – or whichever critter is showing – to the screen’s right will reveal the bag menu on the lower portion of the screen. The first option is computer bags, a topic…


The LapWorks Aluminum Desktop Stand

Not long ago I reviewed a simple black plastic swiveling laptop stand which really impressed me because it made using my Toshiba Satellite more ergonomic?as it was kept?cool. My only real complaints against that economical (<$10) solution was that it wobbled a bit, and the front retaining lip blocked the Toshiba’s SD card slot. I no longer have the Toshy, it’s been replaced by my much loved Fuji T4215, but wouldn’t you know it? The Fuji also has an SD slot, as well as jacks for the microphone and earphones located on the front lower edge. I eventually found it…


The BatteryGeek 130Wh External Battery Pack Review

I have had my MacBook Pro for about 6 months now, and for the most part I have been very happy with it. The one issue that has been with it from the beginning is battery life. While it may be quite a powerful laptop, the 2.5hrs battery life (I have seen less more than once) is just plain slack. Due to the design of the MBP an extended battery isn’t really practical either as it would be a rather awkward hump in the middle of the laptop. There is a solution however. It might not be the most elegant…


The Iambic Health and Diet Manager (for Pocket PC) Review

One of the factors that made me drag my feet when deciding whether or not to fully migrate from the Palm OS to Windows Mobile was that the two software titles I considered essential were only available for the Palm OS at the time: one was Beik’s Woman which I use to track “female stuff”, and the other was Calorie King’s Diet Diary. Both programs came with desktop software, so although I would eventually lose the convenience of being able to enter or retrieve data on my PDA, I was still able to use these programs familiar interfaces on my…


The Brando USB Audio Controller Review

When you’ve got a computer without sound support or perhaps it is broken, what do you do? If its a desktop computer, you could pop its lid and install a sound card in one of its slots. But if its a laptop/notebook computer, there are no expansion slots to put in a sound card. There is also the tech factor, sometimes opening something electronic up and messing with its guts is not the thing for everyone. Enter the USB Audio Controller from USB Brando.


Thermaltake iXoft Fanless Notebook Cooler Review

Laptops these days are getting a lot more powerful, and along with that power comes a lot of heat. Some laptops obviously get hotter than others, and my MacBook Pro would be nearing the top of that list. When it?s running hard it can get very hot on the bottom, which is why the term ?notebook? was coined. At full (or even medium) load, my MacBook Pro is definitely not a laptop. Thermaltake, the guys that make computer cases and cooling products, have come to the rescue with a new product that puts your notebook back on your lap, without…