Friday, August 27, 2010

Hey Guys, this is going to be a quick review of the Altec Lansing Expressionist Bass FX3022 speakers which I unboxed on my youtube channel (check it out if you haven't already). I wasn't really shopping for speakers but when these speakers came on sale for only $50, regular $150, I decided to pick them up and try them out. I did a quick check on beforehand to see what they thought, and one thing that I noted was they said these speakers perform better in a home theatre environment as opposed to music. Before I get into the review, here is a quick rundown on the specs. These are a unique 2.2 design, where a bass speaker is incorporated into the base of each satellite. The wattage is not very high, with only 25 watts rms. The down firing subwoofer loacted in each satellite is 9 watts, and the system response is 40Hz - 16kHz (-10db). Now the first thing I did with these speakers is set them up with my laptop and test them out with some music via itunes. Now I should also note that these speakers lack a bass and treble control, and only allow you to perform volume up and down. This is a bit dissappointing, as when listening to music I found the treble a bit harsh as you turned up the volume. The bass also seemed a bit weak, even when listening to music with heavy bass. I then decided to test them out in a home theatre application by hooking them up to my tv's audio out, and as mentioned in the CNET review, these speakers really came into their own. Movies sound great, especially action movies, and gaming is exceptional as well when tested playing COD4 Modern Warfare 2. I promptly swapped my Logitech z-2300 system to my laptop, which performs nicely with music, and made the Expressionist Bass system my new tv speakers. Now to sum it up, are these speakers worth the $150 price tag? I would have to say no. At this price range I would expect a bit better sound quality as well as bass and treble control, but for the $50 price I paid, you can't go wrong. As always, thanks for reading, and stay tuned for my upcoming review on Sony's noise cancelling in ear headphones.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Big News!!! The newest edition to the Blackberry line was unveiled today, the Torch 9800. This device is similar to the palm pre in the face that it has both a touch screen and slide out full qwerty keyboard. The device will come equipped with the new OS6, which is MUCH improved upon over previous OS' and is geared more toward the consumer market. Here is a complete rundown of the specs.

•Brand new form factor – Touch/QWERTY combination smartphone
•BlackBerry 6 – Featuring:
•Context-sensitive pop-up menus for more relevant options
•A new WebKit browser for faster and more robust performance
•Integrated social feeds including the ability to update multiple social networks from a single screen
•Engaging multimedia experience
•Universal Search to uncover results throughout your smartphone – from Contacts, Apps, data and the Web
•Sleek design with a touch-sensitive trackpad located on the front face of the device
•The first BlackBerry smartphone to include the new BlackBerry App World pre-installed, supporting carrier billing through AT&T, making it easier for customers to discover and purchase applications
•3.2” 360 x 480 capacitive touch screen display
•Vivid 5.0MP camera with flash, auto focus, image stabilization and geo-tagging
•Support for 3G networks (HSDPA)
•512MB Flash memory, 4GB on‐board memory, microSD/SDHC memory card slot (4GB card included, cards up to 32GB supported)
•Built-in GPS and Wi‐Fi (802.11 b/g/n)
•Network Support
•GSM/GPRS/EDGE: 850/900/1800/1900 MHz
•HSPDA/UMTS: 800/850/1900/2100 MHz
•Approximately 4.4” x 2.4” x 0.57” (closed), 5.8” x 2.4” x 0.57” (open)

Now while the hardware may not be revolutionary in comparison to other phones out there on the market, the OS certainly is a big step forward for RIM. For those us who are big into social media, the ability to receive updates, as well as post to multiple sites through a single application is welcome news. The new OS also comes with app world pre-installed showing that they are hoping to delve further into what Apple has already capitalized on. This device looks promising for RIM, and appears to be just what the consumer Blackberry user was waiting for. No Canadian launch date has been set yet, but it is said that it will be carried by at least Rogers, and Telus when it does. Also be sure to keep your eyes open for news of Blackberrys tablet which is getting more attention as of late. RIM has recently purchased the domain name, could this device go head to head with the iPad? Again, thanks for reading :)