Reviews

E-TEN X800 Unboxing

The E-TEN X800 is here!! As promised, here is the grand unboxing.  I really enjoyed this, as the X800 seems to be a truly awesome device.  I’ve owned a number of different E-TEN devices, the M500, the G500, the M700, and now the X800 (and soon to be X650).  I was really concerned about this particular device, as the build quality of the previous three devices left a little to be desired. In fact, my daughter has been using the M700 for the past three months or so, and the device has got some serious problems now. It is constantly…


The Skooba Design Skooba Satchel 2.0 Luxe Review

It’s not often that I get to do decidedly “girly” laptop bag reviews, but this week I have two of them to write about…lucky me! And lucky for all of you women who come to Gear Diary, as well as your significant others. Need I mention that Valentine’s Day is rapidly approaching, and nothing says “I love you” more than a gift that will be used every day, one that celebrates and accentuates the feminine goddesses that we are. Well, jewelry works, too, but I digress. Today we are going to take a close look at the Skooba Satchel 2.0…


By land or sea: The OtterBox Apple iPhone Defender case REVIEW

The Apple iPhone is one amazing device. Yes, some naysayers will hem and haw about the lack of features, but on the flip side, 1.4 million people love the iPhone dearly. Of those 1.4 million humans who own the iPhone, they fall in three lifestyle categories: aquatic (water), terrestrial (land), or amphibious (water and land). If you’re in a cubicle, that’s can be considered a sub lifestyle / human category. Anyway, the folks at OtterBox cater to the aquatic and amphibious lifestyles with their unique line of rugged cases from iPods to laptops and specialty cases. Brand new is the…


The Recon 400X Review

Have you ever dropped a PDA or cellphone and had the screen crack? Have you had it up to here with Windows Mobile’s quirks? Well maybe, just maybe, this PDA is for you. What PDA can withstand drops and use in the rain? What PDA doesn’t run Windows Mobile or Palm OS anymore?? The Recon 400X. Now you might say hey I thought this PDA ran Windows Mobile. Well, it does. However, now, via SDG Systems, you can get a Recon 400X that runs Linux!


Sandisk Sansa View Review: Could This Be Perfection in a Box?

I do not think I have anticipate writing any review as much as I have anticipated the Sandisk Sansa View. I first encountered the View last year when I discovered it on Sansa’s website. At that time, it looked significantly different than the entire line of Sansa players, bearing a large, wide screen and what appeared to be no visible control. I immediately began seeking a review unit, with no response. Shortly thereafter, the Sansa View was pulled by Sandisk and significantly reconfigured. The final release of the Sansa View bore a much closer resemblance to its predecessor, the Sansa…


Lighten That Load: the Skooba Shuttle Backpack REVIEW

As a downtown worker, I have to make a daily jaunt of several long city blocks to my office. It’s not because I choose to walk, but rather, it’s because the expense of downtown parking. Thus, I carry the necessities of mobile computing on my back like a modern day beast of burden like everyone else I see whether it’s downtown, at the universities, or the tourists. Of course, all of the gadgets along with the related materials such as books and assorted odd and ends need to be compartmentalized in an orderly fashion, while keeping weight and comfort in…


The Navigon 7100 GPS Receiver Review

Have you ever driven fifty miles out of your way before realizing the map was upside down? Have you ever had to stop and make that embarrassing phone call when you got lost on the way to a friend’s house (or worse, a date or job interview)? Or the ultimate insult…have you ever had to stop at a seedy gas station or motel off the highway and ask for directions (yup, when you hit the cornfield, you have gone too far) Well, Navigon is putting an end to all of these and many other embarrassing situations. With the Navigon 7100…


The Proporta Laptop Battery Review

One of most laptop’s main limitations is their battery life, which can usually only be relied upon for a few hours. This hindrance is never more evident that when traveling, because finding a place to recharge in airports and train stations can be a major challenge. On January 1, 2008, carrying extended batteries will become a little bit trickier when traveling by plane, but it can still be done as long as the extra battery is packed in your carry-on luggage (versus in your checked luggage) and it is under a certain size. Copied verbatim from the US Government’s Safe…


Verizon Powered Palm Treo 755p Review

I have written reviews of just about every current Treo on the market. I looked at the Verizon Powered 700w on pocketnow.com, the Sprint Powered 700wx on pocketnow.com, and the Cingular (now AT&T) Powered Palm 750 here on Gear diary. I also wrote a couple of follow-up articles on the 700w on pocketnow (Good Night Sweet Treo…or Not, and Over the Air Synching Issues Investigation) that really stirred things up. However, problems are problems, and if they need to be resolved, I’m not necessarily going to hold back. I’ve been using the 755p for a little bit, and honestly, while…


The Jetart NC5000 CoolStand Notebook Cooler Review

Are you still allowing your laptop to sit flat on your desk…cooking its hard drive in the hot air swelling from insufficient vents? If it works as promised, then Jetart’s new NC5000 CoolStand notebook Cooler might possibly be an inexpensive and effective way to keep your hard drive healthy and your laptop in the cool zone. Let’s take a look…


The Domo X Mimobot USB Flash Drive Review

Moving your digital information from point A to point B is usually best done by using a USB flash drive, and nowhere is it written that the drive used must be some boring thumb drive. Witness the mimoco mimobot art toy USB flash drive, a memory device with more personality than any I’ve ever seen… mimobots are available in 512MB, 1GB, 2GB, and 4GB capacities, produced in limited editions, are hi-speed USB 2.0, compatible with both Mac and Windows, and are enhanced for Windows Vista’s ReadyBoost technology. There are many styles of limited edition mimobots to choose from; I was…



Review: Zibra Open It! Will This Packaging Removal Tool Render Scissors Obsolete?

One thing I hate about Christmas morning is fighting the industrial strength “blister pack” around my kids’ toys. Hate it. Hate it. Hate it. (Did I mention I don’t like it?). If I use a razor to open this industrial strength substance, I risk amputation of fingers. Since I have twins, the fun is doubled and somehow the kids don’t understand “it will take Dad a minute to get this open”. They want the toy opened (a) Now! and (b) Fast. Enter the Open-It! – a safer way to open almost any type of packaging known to mankind.


ASUS Eee PC 8GB Unboxing

Somehow word of the ASUS Eee PC flew under my radar. I had no clue as to its existence until the first week of November (two weeks after the US launch) when a colleague at work informed me of this low cost ultra compact portable computer. After hearing the brief details and that the computer would come pre-installed with Linux, my reaction was WOW! That sounds way cool! I quickly searched for it on the internet when I got back to my office. After seeing the info on the ASUS and the EeeUser web sites, I just had to have…


Flip Video Ultra Review: A Pocket Video Camera for the Rest of Us

Before my first son was born, I bought a camcorder so we could capture all of the precious moments of his life. Now, almost six years later, I have a box filled with unwatched video, mostly of a baby not doing anything in particular. That set me wondering what would it take to have done something useful with this video. The answer, at least for me, was that it was just too complicated to transfer the video from the tapes to my computer in order to edit it. With my family growing, I simply did not have time for all…


The Alltel Motorola MOTOROKR Z6m Mobile Phone Review

With all the smart-phones that we cover here on Gear Diary, it can be easy to overlook a huge segment of the mobile market…the dumb-phone. No, these phones don’t have low IQs and they certainly aren’t stupid, they just don’t offer the PC-like capabilities and advanced features which are generally associated with phones running the Palm, Symbian, or Windows Mobile operating systems. Although the Alltel Motorola MOTOROKR Z6m fits into what I consider to be this “dumb-phone” category, it certainly does not fall short on features. It offers a 2 megapixel camera with video, has a built-in graphic equalized MP3…


eStarling WIFI Digital Photo Frame Review

When I was at DigitalLife 2007 in NYC this summer, I looked around hoping to find a digital photo frame which supported WIFI. My goal was to find a frame with Internet connectivity that would auto-update itself by using photos contained in my Flickr account.


Johnny Lightning’s V_Bot Review

At the same time that Gear Diary was approached to review the Johnny Lightning Battle Wheels, we were also invited to review the V_Bot. What is the V_Bot? Well, here is a clipping from the email describing it: “V_Bot, the new high-tech hero, transforms from a sleek street vehicle into a giant robot loaded with action moves. This revolutionary RC toy captures kids’ imaginations with a giant robot that they can control, transform and drive. V_Bot even has a plug-in for an MP3 player.” Yep, you read that clipping right! V_Bot is a robot that can really transform into an…


The Spire 17? Mojo Laptop Bag & Atom Accessory Bag Review

I’m pretty sure that at this point there is not a single person who has not used a backpack or satchel. Generally speaking, you usually find yourself wishing you had more space. Then, later on you find yourself wishing you didn’t have more space, but instead find yourself wishing you didn’t have a bag that keeps trying to tear to shreds on you. Then, along comes Mojo. This bag is quite possibly the most durable bag I have ever seen, with the most space I have EVER seen in a satchel. Ever imagine a bag that has pockets inside of…


Bose In-Ear Headphones Review

Bose bills their Tri-Port Acoustic Headphones as the “only in-ear headphones with the rich audio and comfortable fit not available from conventional designs“. I’ve been testing a pair in various locations – mainly while sitting still at home, on the elliptical machine at the gym and out walking around the neighborhood. The headphones are not terribly expensive at $ 99. At least not by today’s standards. Are they worth the money?