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Category Archives: Reviews

Belkin USB Hub That Fills Your Desk Grommet Hole. Verdict: Ingenious Design!

By Ian Chiu

There’s something besides CPU speed and hard drive space that you will never have enough of, and that’s USB port. So, what do you do to get more of those when your desktop is already heavily cluttered? Belkin has a ingenious idea to slip its USB hubs into your desktop’s grommet holes. The 3″ grommet hub reviewed on Everything USB has 4 raised USB ports with openings on each side for hiding excess cables, and depending on your holes’ size, you may need the 2″ version. One surprising discovery was how well the hub accommodated the larger USB devices. Two devices that the reviewer had problems with in the past fitting into stacked USB ports can now be plugged in with ease. And lastly, since the hub fits snugly in a grommet hole, you won’t have a problem with it flipping or tipping over when multiple cables are connected. Downsides are the lack of activity LEDs and the hassle of drilling your own grommet holes if not present. For full review, hit the link.

[Full Review @ Everything USB]

My Day In Detroit, Driving The 2008 Lineup Around

me in a 2008 corvette

By David Ponce

When I got the email inviting me to Milford, Michigan to drive the 2008 GM lineup around, I thought it was a joke. But sure enough, it wasn’t, and I’m happy to say, I haven’t had this much fun in a while. I’ll let you know what GM is up to in this article, and just what kind of fun we had, but first, a disclaimer: GM paid my way there, but all the opinions that follow are purely mine.

Other than a retelling of facts, what can you expect in this post? Well, there’s a video, for one. It’s me as a passenger in the ‘vette, while it’s being floored. Expletives ensue. Then I’ll tell you about StabiliTrak, GM’s version of traction control, as well as the surprise of the day: the new Saab 9-3. Oh, and a bunch of pictures.

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OhGizmo Review: Mobile Edge Laptop Backpacks Part 1

Mobile Edge

By Evan Ackerman

New backpack smell always takes me back to the first day of school. And since I’ve been out of school, I haven’t put much thought into replacing my ancient JanSport. But ever since Mobile Edge sent me a couple of their laptop backpacks to check out, my sense of style, my laptop, and my back have all been demanding something new. I was able to meander about with these backpacks for several weeks on a trip up to the Pacific Northwest, and I’ll review them both separately over the next few days. You can be assured that these reviews are unbiased since I had to send the backpacks back (grrr); but it’s worth noting that I was disappointed to have to do so, ’cause I really did (mostly) like them. Read my full review after the jump.Continue Reading

OhGizmo Review: Playaway Digital Audiobook Player

By Evan Ackerman

Playaway

Playaway, makers of a single-serving digital audiobook player, kindly sent us a review unit last week. Being a fan of audio and books (and free stuff), I volunteered to write it up. The particular audiobook that I’m listening to for this review is The Worst Case Scenario Handbook, read by Penn Jillette and Burt Reynolds. It retails from the Playawaydigital.com website for $34.99. Click on through for a brutally in-depth review.

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OhGizmo Review: The Nokia N73

By David Ponce

When it comes to taking quality pictures, it’s undeniable that cellphones are making significant strides forward. Hell, only two years ago, VGA was considered hot. But even with high megapixel counts, cameraphone images are still not up to par with even a basic point-and-shoot.

Until now.

The Nokia N73 features a 3.2MP camera with Carl-Zeiss optics, but most importantly: auto-focus and a mechanical shutter. These two features allow the phone to take pictures that are nearly indistinguishable from those taken from low-end dedicated digital cameras… as long as there is enough light. Of course, taking pictures is not all the phone does right, and I’ve got a good bit of ground to cover, so lets get started. Out here I’ll say this much: great phone, gorgeous pictures, slightly long camera startup times. But… no WiFi!

Keep reading for a bunch of unboxing pictures, and the full review.

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MS’ Natural Ergonomic Mouse 6000 Reviewed. Verdict: It Loves Your Wrist

By Ian Chiu

This mouse is truly extraordinary… not because of its shape, but the unique posture required to actually control the mouse properly. If you don’t follow what’s in the manual, you are in for pain. As with other ergonomic mice and keyboards, the Natural Ergonomic Mouse 6000 takes a while to get used to. In Scott’s case, it’s less than half an hour, after which your wrist will have a hella good time with the mouse. His review has an in-depth discussion of the usability of the Microsoft mouse. Other features include Magnifier and Instant Viewer; essentially rip-off from Apple’s Exposé.

Overall, I think the Natural Wireless Laser Mouse 6000 is a great addition to any office user’s desktop. The comfort provided is extraordinary so long as posture is maintained, and the Instant Viewer and Magnifier provided within IntelliPoint help improve productivity. The laser engine and smooth (but close-range) wireless performance make for a smooth mousing experience. Your wrists will love you for it. But be warned, slouchers and gamers will feel the pain from using this mouse, both ergonomically and through the non-ratcheting scroll wheel.

[Full Review @ Everything USB]

Top 19 Tips To Get The Most From Your Nokia N91

By David Ponce

A few weeks ago, I posted my review for the Nokia N91, a music playing smartphone with a 4GB hard drive. I had concluded that as a music player, the N91 worked great, but as a smartphone, it fell a few steps short of perfection due to a few software issues. It was still fundamentally a good phone, but a little rough around the edges: with 4GBs to handle, some of the applications and features that worked flawlessly on models with smaller memory were choking a little on all those bytes.

Well, some time has passed, and things are looking a lot better. For one, there’s been a firmware upgrade (which I’ve installed) and I’m happy to report that things are running much more smoothly… though not completely flawlessly. I’d have to upgrade my smartphone rating to 8.5/10, up from a 7. And, there’s been lots of discussion here and there about ways of making the most out of the device. So, after the jump, I present to you a rather exhaustive list of tips that should allow you to squeeze all the juice out of the N91. If you’ve dropped the cash on this phone, it might be worth it to take a look or two.

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OhGizmo Review – Vaja Nokia E61 Leather Case

Vaja Nokia E61 Leather Case (Image courtesy Vaja)By Andrew Liszewski

Having an unhealthy addiction to gadgets and gizmos requires you to try and stay on the bleeding edge of technology as much as possible. One of the areas I follow with particular interest is mobile phones but unfortunately living in North America means that getting my hands on truly cutting-edge handsets requires me to import them.

Fortunately that part of the equation is easy these days with plenty of online retailers selling unlocked phones from overseas. No, the hard part to owning a phone that technically doesn’t exist under any carrier on your continent is the lack of accessories for it. I’ve been enjoying my latest phone, the Nokia E61 for a few months now (you can see my first look at the phone here) and during that time I’ve pretty much had to live without a proper case. Sure the iPaq sleeve I’ve been using works well enough but I prefer to have something designed for this specific phone.

Well one of the first cases made available for the E61 and definitely one of the nicest is from Vaja. If you’ve been living your life under a technology-free rock and only started reading tech blogs today then you’ll be unaware that Vaja has been making high-quality, hand-made leather cases for phones, MP3 players, PDAs and even laptops for as long as I can remember.

Now for those who don’t feel like a lot of reading Vaja has managed to create a case that thoroughly protects the E61 but at the same time adds hardly any weight or bulk to it. The high-quality leather and precision stitching used by Vaja results in a case that looks extremely professional and gives the impression it’s not about to fall apart with daily use. Of course some might feel the $60 price tag is a bit much for a case but with Vaja you really get what you pay for.

For an in-depth look at the Vaja E61 case (Note: Requires more reading) please check out my full review with additional pics after the jump…

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OhGizmo Review: The Nokia N91

nokia n91

By David Ponce

Back when the Nokia N91 was first announced, there weren’t too many musicphones with an integrated 4GB hard drive around. At the time, it promised to do right everything that Motorola’s ROKR had done wrong, and some serious amounts of drool dripped from mouths everywhere. No crappy 100 song limit, hell: the N91 promised you the ability to store up to 3,000! To make things even sweeter, it would come with Bluetooth, a 2MP camera and best of all, WiFi.

And even though the long wait between announcement and rollout certainly has dampened some of the excitement, Nokia has managed to execute on all its promises. As a musicphone, the performance is stellar. It’s clear that the N91 was designed as a music device first, and as a smartphone second. Unfortunately, that’s precisely where its relatively few weaknesses lie.

For a full review, come right in. Please bear with my pictures: I’m a horrible photographer, armed with a horrible camera. I’ve included some of mine, along with some professional ones. You’ll know which ones are which.

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