Wednesday, 27 February 2013

Camera shoot-out: Sony Xperia S vs. Sony Xperia Z

As I've recently acquired the latest and greatest Sony Xperia Z as an upgrade from the Xperia S, I thought to share few comparison camera shots between both handsets. Not being an imaging expert my feeling is that the Z generally produces better quality pictures, however I have noticed on few occasions that it does fairly heavy post-processing and fine details are sometimes blurred a little. Yet still, the noise seems to be much reduced in the Xperia Z shooter, which was major concern with Xperia S camera.

Few sample shots below - just click on each for high-res version. All photos were taken using fully automatic mode on both devices.

Tuesday, 18 December 2012

Nokia Lumia 920 and the tale of déjà vu

Exactly a year ago, thanks to the lovely team at Nokia Connects I've had an opportunity to trial the Nokia Lumia 800 - the first Nokia-designed smartphone running the Windows Phone operating system. Putting all ramblings whether Nokia's sudden strategy switch was right or not, the Lumia 800 impressed me, however not to the point where I'd be ready to ditch Android in favour of WP7 just yet.

Fast-forward 12 months and I find myself with the latest top dog from Nokia's Windows Phone range in my hands, the Lumia 920. Again, kudos to Nokia Connects for letting me have it.

Wednesday, 29 February 2012

Impressions from MWC 2012 a.k.a. "This Is My Next"

Although I'm self-proclaimed mobile gadgets maniac, somehow I don't usually follow major events in the industry as closely as someone could think. However, since I consider getting a new smartphone to replace my current HTC Desire Z sometime soon'ish, I was keeping an extra eye on the recent happenings in Barcelona where Mobile World Congress took place.

Wednesday, 15 February 2012

Running SSH daemon in Windows 7

Despite being Linux (fan)boy generally and running Fedora on all in-house laptops, I've decided to keep Windows 7 on my newly acquired Acer Revo RL100 media centre PC. I am fairly happy with it and don't feel the need to switch to Linux distro on such PC anyway. However, since my (ir)regular backup policy heavily relies on rsync which pushes data from my laptop over ssh to external USB drive attached to media centre PC, I was looking for a solution that works in Windows 7. Surprisingly, there is one and works pretty well. Phew!

Friday, 3 February 2012

Updating nVidia driver in Acer Revo RL100

Upgrading video driver for nVidia ION2 adapter in Acer Revo RL100 downloaded directly from nvidia website surprisingly leads to the installer failing with "This graphics driver could not find compatible graphics hardware" error. Funny, right? Turns out that video adapter can only be upgraded by the driver update downloaded from Acer website. However, driver provided by Acer is quite old compared to the latest version sourced from nvidia directly, and we all love to always have the latest and greatest drivers installed, right?

Wednesday, 25 January 2012

Acer Revo RL100 media centre PC review

For the past year or so my over-5-year-old Dell Latitude D620 laptop has been working 24/7 as a home media centre PC. Hooked up to the LCD TV with VGA lead for video and standard 3.5mm jacks for audio, combined with wireless keyboard+trackball combo it was mostly used to watch TV/VoD streaming over the internet (thankfully Xilo has truly unlimited broadband). However, I've been thinking to upgrade this rather archaic setup and replace the dated laptop with dedicated HTPC machine. I wasn't in the hurry tough, so over the course of few months I've ran through few options which included Zotac Z-BOX, Xtreamer Ultra and Acer Revo RL3700 among others. But one day I came across a very good deal on Acer Revo RL100 which I've never heard about earlier, nonetheless given its specification and bargain price I have decided to get one straight away.

Thursday, 12 January 2012

HTC Flyer vs. Archos 80 G9 - thoughts and impressions

I didn't really consider changing my tablet anytime soon, as I was quite happy with Archos 80 G9 which I've got around October. But there was that ridiculous Christmas clearance of the HTC Flyer tablet at DSG stores (PCWorld, Dixons and Currys) here in the UK recently and you know... it just happened by itself. ;) When the clearance was pretty much over everywhere, I've somehow managed to bag (in fact, my wife did) a WiFi-only unit, the very last one from the display in Dixons nearby. Phew!

Tuesday, 10 January 2012

Sony Ericsson Xperia pro - thoughts and review

My recent involvement as an author in Coolsmartphone technology blog has opened an opportunity to get my hands dirty with mobile gadgets I'd probably never had chance to play with. One of the latest example was Sony Ericsson Xperia pro - a full-sized hardware qwerty handset, powered by Android Gingerbread due to receive Ice Cream Sandwich soon.

Judging by nowadays standards Xperia pro perhaps isn't the most compelling handset out there, yet it is still very good looking, reasonably specced and reliable handset, sporting fantastic hardware qwerty keyboard too. Official upgrade to ICS just behind the corner is surely a huge plus too. Considering that combination doesn't really occur often in Android world, Xperia pro is definitely worth a shot, especially with very attractive £272 price tag at Handtec.

I've written up a full review at Coolsmartphone, so read on if interested.

Monday, 19 December 2011

Writing for Coolsmartphone

Anyone who is at least vaguely following my blog can surely tell that my interest and passion in closely revolving around mobile phones and devices of various kinds. I write reviews of virtually every device I've got in my hands and I really enjoy it. I am hoping that whoever ends up on this blog reads and enjoys them too. I am not an industry journalist or a professional reviewer by any mean, I just like to use and play with latest mobile gadgets and then write my thoughts about it. Simple as that.

However, my recent review of Archos 80 G9 tablet has been picked up by James Pearce, a member of Coolsmartphone blog team, who asked if I'd agree to publish my review on their website. I knew that blog very well, as I've been following it in my RSS feed reader for years, so I had no objections against James' proposal whatsoever. That way, my Archos review has been republished and out of the sudden I became a fully fledged Coolsmartphone team member

Being a member of high-profile UK technology blog opened the opportunity to reach out for a wider range of mobile gadgets to play with and review, including the Motorola Pro+ recently and Sony Ericsson Xperia pro which I currently have at hand and will review soon. It's like little boy's dream came true - getting gadgets to play with for free and then just blog about them. How cool is that?! :) And, as it turns out, there are people who actually like my reviews, which is a nice bonus.

Having said that, I'd like to say huge thank you not only to Coolsmartphone guys who discovered me and kindly invited to their team, but lots of credit also goes to the great Nokia Connects guys (formerly WOMWorld/Nokia) who were always keen to lend me Nokia stuff to play with, which I'm hoping made this blog a little bit more interesting for past few months.

Wednesday, 30 November 2011

Nokia Lumia 800 review

So here it is, the Nokia Lumia 800 - the first real Windows Phone phone made by Nokia. I've had virtually no experience with Windows Phone 7 before and was looking very much forward to receive Lumia 800 from Nokia Connects (as usual, thanks!) to find out whether WP7 is able to impress me as much as Nokia N9 and MeeGo Harmattan did recently. Frankly, I actually doubted WP7 could stand up to expectations set so high by Harmattan but having solid hands-on experience with both now, I might revise my stance a little bit after all. Let's see...