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OhGizmo Review: eStarling Wireless Digital Photo Frame, Round 2

By Evan Ackerman

eStarling FrameHopefully, you weren’t one of the hapless people who shelled out $250 for an eStarling wireless digital picture frame last Christmas. I myself was suckered in by the 7″ screen, the wireless network connectivity, and the automatic RSS feed and POP email syncing. I bought one for my parents, the idea being that I’d get it all set up for them and then be able to email pictures to the frame from wherever I happened to be. Cool!

What a huge disappointment it turned out to be. Firstly, the LCD is 16×9 widescreen (raise your hand if you take widescreen pictures) and has a frustratingly narrow viewing angle. There’s also a huge eStarling logo plastered across the front, along with an ugly antenna sticking out the top. Furthermore, I’m a pretty techknowledgeable guy, and this thing took me six hours to set up. Most people couldn’t get it working at all, and mine would only function if it was in direct physical contact with my wireless router. Lastly, the slideshow options sucked, and I was lucky if the frame would go for more than an hour without freezing.

ThinkGeek, who were the exclusive distributors of the eStarling frame, were nice enough to get pissed on my behalf, and just announced a free exchange for the eStarling 2.0 for anyone who bought an eStarling frame in 2006. The 2.0 version will have a WiFi range of 120 feet, an internal antenna, no logo on the front, and a better (read: working) motherboard and firmware. ‘Course, the eStarling 1.0 was supposed to have all that stuff already…

[ eStarling News Release and Improvements (PDFs) ]








  • OM

    i picked up 4 digital photo frames this past christmas for various family members. we went with the pandigital 7″ frame because costco had it on sale with a 512MB card for $129. on top of the 512MB card, the pandigital had 64MB on board. no fancy wifi, no POP support, just straight up memory card. well we ordered 4 of them and i have to tell you, they sucked.

    the quality was horrible. the whole widescreen option is ridiculous, if a vertical picture was previously cropped the widescreen display would cut off the head because of the newly cropped aspect ratio. anyway, we returned all 4 of them.

    then we were walking around target and saw some 7″ kodak frames, yes they were $179 each but the quality was amazing. no on board memory, no bells and whistles. just a high quality display. so i started doing some research and it turns out they’re a target exclusive, and it turned out they were on sale that week only for $149 (only $20 more than the pandigistal). needless to say, we picked up 4 of them.

    what i learned is that if you don’t spend the $ on the bells and whistles and spend the money on the display two things happen. a) you get a better experience looking at the photos and b) even your grandmother who doesn’t read english can set it up (yes, this actually happened).

    hope this helps.

    OM

  • http://www.digivista.com.au/ Roger

    If you are looking for a networked digital photo frame, without the need for a local wireless network, then I have setup the following system:

    DigiVista ClearView 10 – 10.4? Digital Photo Frame with USB port
    connected to a
    Motorola Razr V6 maxx cell phone via USB cable

    See http://www.digivista.com.au/product_digivista_clearview_10.html for more info.

    The phone receives picture messages from other cell phones and the pictures are then displayed directly on the 10.4? digital photo frame.

    I think its a far better solution as it doesn?t rely on any local internet connection – only the cell phone network. Also the screen is 640×40 standard 4:3 aspect ratio.

  • http://www.digivista.com.au/ Roger

    that should have been 640 x 480 pixels…

  • http://www.e-bowl.co.uk/category/222 Digital Picture Frames

    7 inch digital picture frames are always a trouble unless you are prepared to cut/crop your pictures. Unless your camera supports the 16:9 aspect ratio. I prefer the features I wish they would release a photo framein 4:3 aspect as well. Digital Photo frames are supposed to relieve us from the use of computers to show/modify pictures if not why don’t we just use the printer to print it out ?

  • http://www.digivista.com.au/ Digital Photo Frames

    How about this offering for around US$150 … A bluetooth enabled digital photo frame with 128MB memory, USB port, movie support, video support, speakers and remote control. Can stream content from a WiFi Bluetooth source.
    http://www.digivista.com.au/product_bluview_5_6_inch_bluetooth_digital_photo_frame.html

  • Ivan

    why not have a 4:3 ratio photo frame?

  • WWW.SVNCO.COM

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  • http://www.svnco.com WWW.SVNCO.COM

    Here!!!!the best digital photo frames:http://www.svnco.com

    We are a professional manufacture of MP3/MP4 player, mp4 watch, mp3 sunglasses,Digital Photo frame, Portable DVD Player, Memory card, USB Flash Driver and Bluetooth products in China.
    _____________________________________________________________________
    SVNCO ELECTRONIC TECHNOLOGY CO.,LTD.
    TangTou Industrial Estate,Shiyan Town,Baoan District,Shenzhen,518108,China.
    Email:[email protected]
    Tel:+86-755-2968 1747
    Fax:+86-755-2968 1429

  • http://www.svnco.com WWW.SVNCO.COM

    http://www.svnco.com—->>Selling MP3/Bluetooth/FM/ sunglasses !!!

    1. Music File:WMA/MP3
    2. Sunglass:Polarized Lens,TR 90 Frame,Shock Proof and Anti-static electricity,against UVA/UVB/ UVC light
    3. Memory:256MB,USB Ver.2.0 Drive
    4. Hi-fi stereo earphone
    5. Integrated Microphone supporting ADPCM recording
    6. Battery:230mAh/3.7V macromolecule polymer Li-ion rechargeable battery
    7. Battery Playtime:2 hours for fully charged,8 continuous hours playing time
    8. Colors for choice:Black/Pink/White/Blue
    9. Bluetooth function applied,compatible with Bluetooth mobile and facilities.

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    Email:[email protected]
    http://www.svnco.com
    Tel:+86-755-2968 1747
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  • http://www.memoryking.co.uk dknmedia

    Check out all the information on digital photo frames at memoryking.co.uk

    http://www.memoryking.co.uk/acatalog/Digital_Photo_Frames_Pricture_Frames.html