Archive for Mike Lowe

Panasonic Lumix GX80 review: Small in scale, big on features
4.5 stars

Panasonic Lumix GX80 review: Small in scale, big on features

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With the Lumix GF8 absent from British shores, we were beginning to wonder if Panasonic had bailed on the smaller-scale and more affordable compact system camera concept. But that's not the case, as the latest Lumix GX80 (or GX85 in the USA) stands to... >>

Gears of War 4 multiplayer preview: Grinding those gears

Gears of War 4 multiplayer preview: Grinding those gears

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The chainsaws are back. Gears of War 4's multiplayer is due to go into closed public beta from 18 April, to give a taster of all the duck-and-cover, shotgun-to-the-face, third-person shooter mayhem. And ahead of time we got to play a couple of hours of... >>

What is Ultra HD Premium and why does it matter? The 4K HDR badge explained

What is Ultra HD Premium and why does it matter? The 4K HDR badge explained

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The home cinema and entertainment technology industry sure loves a badge or two. Kit from TVs and Blu-ray players, to amplifiers and speakers all seem to be run through a certification process to give you an idea that they will perform in given circumstances.... >>

Huawei P9 Leica camera explored: Double the camera, double the fun?

Huawei P9 Leica camera explored: Double the camera, double the fun?

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At the Huawei P9 phone launch in London's Battersea on Wednesday 6 April the Chinese company made a lot of noise about its new camera features. And for good reason: it's the only company to brandish Leica co-engineering and a unique dual camera arrangement... >>

Vinyl fan? Audio-Technica AT-LP60BT Bluetooth turntable offers cool without the wires

Vinyl fan? Audio-Technica AT-LP60BT Bluetooth turntable offers cool without the wires

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There's no doubt that vinyl record sales are on the up. Okay, so they're nowhere near their heyday in terms of sales volumes, but that doesn't stop vinyl being the cool antithesis to streaming and MP3s. Only to listen to real, tangible records you're... >>

Canon EOS 80D review: The mid-range master
5.0 stars

Canon EOS 80D review: The mid-range master

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If you're looking to drop a four-figure wedge of cash of a mid-range DSLR - one that'll last you for a good stretch of time - then Canon is one of the names that so often floats to the surface; the crema on the coffee, if you will. And in the 80D that... >>

Naim Mu-so Qb review: An all-round success
5.0 stars

Naim Mu-so Qb review: An all-round success

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When the original Naim Mu-so launched in 2014, it was received with critical acclaim. Although it's a physically large bit of kit, it impressed us so much that it took the Pocket-lint Awards gong for best speaker in 2015. Which sets-up the newer, smaller-scale... >>

Best smartphone camera: iPhone 6S Plus vs SGS7 edge vs LG G5

Best smartphone camera: iPhone 6S Plus vs SGS7 edge vs LG G5

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Phone cameras have become mighty impressive in recent years, almost making dedicated cameras redundant. As we push into 2016 the new wave of flagship devices come with formidable camera specs. And having reviewed the LG G5, Samsung Galaxy S7 edge and... >>

Sony Cyber-shot RX10 III superzoom boasts 24-600mm zoom and 1-inch sensor size

Sony Cyber-shot RX10 III superzoom boasts 24-600mm zoom and 1-inch sensor size

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It wasn't so long ago that Sony released the second-gen Cyber-shot RX10 - a camera, ultimately, similar to the original superzoom in that range. But it's all change with the RX10 III (which you might see called DSC-RX10M3 on some sites), which embodies... >>

What is Apple Renew and how does it benefit me? Trade-in and recycle options explored

What is Apple Renew and how does it benefit me? Trade-in and recycle options explored

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Apple is going extra green. And no, that's not a new iPhone colour variant. It's all to do with recycling, with Apple Renew - the company's trade-in and recycling incentive programme - announced proper at the company's iPhone SE and iPad Pro (9.7-inch)... >>

Astell & Kern AK380 is one bonkers but beautiful high-res portable player

Astell & Kern AK380 is one bonkers but beautiful high-res portable player

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We've seen swathes of audio devices in our time, but when it comes to portable audio nothing has ever quite stood out like the bonkers but beautiful looking Astell & Kern AK380. Now this is no Sony Walkman. Crafted from a single block of aluminium, which... >>

Shark Proof liquid screen protector works for any screen, even curved phones

Shark Proof liquid screen protector works for any screen, even curved phones

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Screen protectors can be priceless to help keep your beloved (and probably expensive) phone or smart device free from scratches. But they can also look unsightly. Now there's a quirky solution that doesn't depend on a stick-on layer at all. Shark Proof,... >>

Nokia Ozo will cost €55,000: Pro-spec VR capture doesn't come cheap

Nokia Ozo will cost €55,000: Pro-spec VR capture doesn't come cheap

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In 2016 virtual reality (VR) is tech's big fish. So it's apt that the pro-spec Nokia Ozo 360-degree VR camera looks like a futuristic flying fish. One priced to the tune €55,000. (Update: since publishing, Nokia has contacted us regarding UK price,... >>

Audeze Sine headphones: Lightning port listening never looked so good

Audeze Sine headphones: Lightning port listening never looked so good

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There's long been talk of Apple ditching the headphones jack on the iPhone in favour of delivering audio via the Lightning port. All bets are on for that to be the case with the iPhone 7, but we'll have to wait and see. Still, there's nothing stopping... >>

Want VR on a budget? Homido Mini clip onto your phone and cost £15

Want VR on a budget? Homido Mini clip onto your phone and cost £15

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There's been an explosion of virtual reality - better known as VR - in recent months. But if the idea of PlayStation VR, Vive or Oculus sounds like an over-expensive pipe-dream then here's a budget option: the Homido Mini. It's not the first time we've... >>

Best compact cameras 2016: The best pocket cameras available to buy today

Best compact cameras 2016: The best pocket cameras available to buy today

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If you're looking for the best compact cameras of 2016 then you've come to the right place. We will guide you through the hottest cameras to save you time when it comes to buying one from your local shop or online. Compact cameras are plentiful. With... >>

Best compact system cameras 2016: The best mirrorless interchangeable lens cameras available to buy today

Best compact system cameras 2016: The best mirrorless interchangeable lens cameras available to buy today

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You're looking to buy a compact system camera (CSC) but don't know what to go for? Perhaps the term alone confounds: we've seen plenty of naming conventions being thrown around of late, from simple "mirrorless" through to terms such as "digital single... >>

Nest 3.0 review: The smartest thermostat just got smarter
4.0 stars

Nest 3.0 review: The smartest thermostat just got smarter

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We had Nest 3.0, the smart learning thermostat, installed at the tail-end of 2015, replacing the 2.0 model installed in the summer of 2014. Since then it's been sensing and learning our heating habits. Good job, as the wintry cold spell has really stuck... >>

Nest Cam review: The next level in home security?
4.0 stars

Nest Cam review: The next level in home security?

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Wi-Fi based home security camera options are everywhere at the moment, with the Google-owned Nest Cam not the first product with its foot in the door, so to speak. We've already seen Withings Home, Netatmo Welcome and Panasonic Nubo to name but a few.... >>

Samsung Gear VR Consumer Edition review: The stepping-stone to Oculus proper
4.0 stars

Samsung Gear VR Consumer Edition review: The stepping-stone to Oculus proper

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Virtual reality, often known as VR, has a long and winding history. From the distant dream of Sega's VR, unveiled back in 1993, to the modern day it's-almost-here reality of Oculus Rift, HTC Vive and PlayStation VR, it's South Korean giant Samsung that's... >>

Fujifilm X-Pro2 review: Pro perfection?
4.5 stars

Fujifilm X-Pro2 review: Pro perfection?

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When the Fujifilm X-Pro1 burst onto the camera scene its retro digital rangefinder style was like a pleasurable punch to the face; the kind of kipper-slap that left us, and many, a bit tingly around the chops and hungry for more. No camera maker had dared... >>

Nest major update: Phone geo-tracking added, family accounts introduced

Nest major update: Phone geo-tracking added, family accounts introduced

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Nest has introduced a major update to its app and services today, adding family accounts for up to 10 individual users per account and phone-based geo-tracking for smarter auto-home/away activation. As long-time users of the Nest Learning Thermostat,... >>

Canon EOS 1300D brings Wi-Fi to the entry-level DSLR

Canon EOS 1300D brings Wi-Fi to the entry-level DSLR

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The entry-level DSLR camera sector doesn't see too many new models these days, but Canon has quietly just unveiled its latest: the EOS 1300D. An update to 2014's EOS 1200D, the 1300D is an altogether similar and affordable beginner product, but dresses... >>

Fujifilm X70 review: Wide-angle wonder
4.5 stars

Fujifilm X70 review: Wide-angle wonder

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Fujifilm is a winner when it comes to high-end compact cameras. So when the company unveiled the X70 at the tail-end of 2015 we were surprised and delighted by the concept: this 28mm f/2.8 (equivalent) fixed-lens camera pools together all that's great... >>

Mini Cooper Convertible (2016) first drive: Topless fun

Mini Cooper Convertible (2016) first drive: Topless fun

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It's almost hard to believe that the BMW-reimagined Mini is now in its 15th year. Call it a birthday, if you will, that the Cooper Convertible arrives this month in its third-generation and best-looking guise to date; a little puppy fat, cute looks, bags... >>