Review: Micro R/C Helicopter

24. juli 2010 11:24 by Ron in   //  Tags:   //   Comments

Some time ago I bought a micro R/C helicopter from china.

It is a co-axial helicopter and is easy to fly for everyone. Due to it’s low weight you can only fly it indoors, outside it would be blew away by the wind.

IMG_8071

The remote control needs 6 AA batteries and is also the charger for the battery of the helicopter. The helicopter charges in about 10 minutes and you can fly it for about the same time.

The helicopter has some blinking blue led lights for decoration when turned on.

Conclusion:
+ It is cheap
+ You can fly it indoors so you do not have to wait for the right weather
+ It is fun to play with
+ Everyone can fly it

- It is 100% plastic, if you crash into anything it easily breaks

Review of Chinese company #2

20. juli 2010 18:30 by Ron in   //  Tags:   //   Comments

The company I wrote about, “Shenzhen Akkord Electronics Co., Ltd” is really willing to give a discount and sell the Apad M002 tablet. Sales person “Vincent Xie” told me today that if you would contact him to buy one of those Apad M002 tablets you could get it for $160,- including shipping with DHL. To get that special price you have to mention my name, just say Ron from the Netherlands and he will know that you are talking about me :-).

They call the Apad a “CEM-002 Tablet PC”, it’s a real Apad version 2 with camera and the red charging led..

If you all would buy one of those tablets from Vincent maybe I can get a bigger discount on a nice projector.. Looks like a win-win situation.

Used Android software #1

19. juli 2010 20:48 by Ron in   //  Tags:   //   Comments

Now I use the Apad, that’s the common name so will use that from now on, I need some software for it..

I have tested some software from the “Android Market”, the basic needs for the Apad are;

- Internet browsing
- Twitter
- Email (MS Exchange 2007/2010)
- Video viewing

Some things are easy others are a bit more difficult.

For internet browsing you could use the default Chrome light, but that sucks big time.. I have chosen Opera Mini, it is fast and zooming and scrolling is perfect.

My favorite Twitter client is TweetCaster, it looks great, works great and just what I want in a client.

Email is a bit difficult, there are some Exchange clients but non of them does what I expect from a client, so I need to search a bit more.

For video viewing is the default Video Player good enough, it plays even mkv files (Blue Ray).

Some other software I use:
- SPB TV lots of online TV channels, lots of fun.
- Remote RDP Lite to connect to my Windows servers.

If some more comes along I will keep you posted..

Review of Chinese company #1

18. juli 2010 10:48 by Ron in   //  Tags:   //   Comments

This time I will give you my review of “Shenzhen Akkord Electronics Co., Ltd”, the company where I bought my Tablet PC.

You have to understand that Chinese companies often use translators to generate their adds and that the specifications on their products are often some copy&paste action from a person who has no idea what he is writing about.

This company is no other than most, they make clones of known, hot selling electronics but much cheaper.

I was looking for a tablet computer 7 or 8” running Android and as usual I checked AliExpress.com and found several companies selling something like that.

The reason I choose “Shenzhen Akkord Electronics Co., Ltd” is that the sales person “Vincent Xie” did respond on my questions and gave me a special price (you always have to ask for a discount) and promised me that when I ordered my tablet would arrive within 4 days after shipping (DHL).

Must say that he came through, I ordered on Saturday, it was shipped on Monday and it arrived on Thursday (very nice)..

Even after sales support is pretty good (for a Chinese company) and still he answers my questions..:)

Conclusion: I would buy again from this company and I advise others to buy from it.

Mini R/C Cars from China (review)

17. juli 2010 10:28 by Ron in   //  Tags:   //   Comments

I bought myself a couple of those miniature RC Cars you can buy for a couple of dollars.

IMG_7843

You can order them in different colors and frequencies, the cars in the photo use 27Mhz, 35Mhz, 40Mhz and 49Mhz.
If you want to race against each other in de living room you need different frequencies..

The Remote has 4 buttons (left, right, forward, backward) and uses 2 AA batteries. The Car has a rechargeable battery build in and you have to charge it with a connector from the batteries of the remote. The car charges in about 5-8 minutes and gives you a driving time of about 10 minutes so that is not too bad.

The cars are build quit good, after falling down from the table they still run if nothing happened. The only down side of these cars is that some of them are turning faster to the left than to the right. A nice touch is that when moving forward the head lights turn on and when moving reverse the tail light turn on.

Conclusion:
- These cars are worth the couple of dollars you pay for it
- You can have a lot of indoor fun

Flashed the ePad

17. juli 2010 00:10 by Ron in   //  Tags:   //   Comments

Today I flashed the ePad/Apad with another ROM firmware version. Not that I really needed to but I wanted to know if I could..

I used the 5.1 version of the image made by Roger Braun. This image reformats the partition table so everything done earlier is lost. The good thing is that I also lost all Chinese programs that where useless for me.

It now seems a bit faster, the battery lasts a bit longer so all seems well..

ePad the Chinese Tablet computer (iPad clone)

15. juli 2010 22:47 by Ron in   //  Tags:   //   Comments

When Microsoft announced the tablet pc a couple of years ago I must say that I was impressed. The tablet has internet access, email, simple “light version” of office applications etc..

Last year Apple announced the iPad, a handy wireless 10” tablet computer, it sounds great but what I do not like about Apple is that you must use the Apple store to get applications and you are not allowed to use your own applications. There are no usb slots and you can not insert your own memory cards.

For all those limitations you pay something like 500 USD. I could do that but I like my freedom and I can think for myself so I went in another direction.

In China they build everything they can sell and now that tablets are hot, they build tablets.

it looks like an Apple, it works like an Apple… but it isn’t an Apple..

IMG_7728

I bought a simple Android tablet with no fancy shit, 7” screen with wifi. For my freedom it has 2 usb slots, a microSD slot for memory cards up to 32GB.

I will not bother you with the cpu and memory specifications, it is more important how it works.

I was surprised with the look and feel when I first unpacked it. It looks solid and it feels nice when holding it.

As you see on the photo there is a button like the “Home” button on an Apple iPad only here it is a “Power” button.
Keep in mind the way you see it now;

On the right side there is from bottom to top: Power supply connector, mini usb connector, power switch, mini usb connector, earphones connector, microSD slot, microphone.
On the right top there is a button with 2 functions; 1 is Home and the other is Menu for entering the apps menu.

To turn it on I switched the power switch to “on” and hold the power button for 5 seconds. When the Linux penguin shows the system is booting up.

When it is started it is surprisingly quick, the menus and programs pop-up quickly and the screens scrolls smoothly.
The best way to see if the specifications are good enough for its purpose is viewing a blue ray movie. It looks nice, no strange hiccups. Watching the movie I noticed that the build in speaker does not give the sound you would want to hear but with earplugs the sound is great, even better than expected.

The tablet has also a 1.3Mpix camera but that is useless, it is dark and just bad quality.

My version has no Bluetooth or 3G build in but I use wifi to connect to the internet and that works fine, without any problems I can download apps from the Android market and installing apps from other locations is no problem, first download them to the sd-card and run them from there.

What could be better is the battery life, after 3 hours it is dead empty and charging takes about the same time.

Conclusion:

+ Cheap, about 100 USD
+ Software freedom
+ Weight (335 grams)

- Battery life
- Charging time
- Camera  

Would I buy it again?
Yes, the price is so low that when after a year I would buy the newest model and throw this one in the trash I am still better of than buying an iPad for 5 times the price and keep that for more than 3 years.

New blog

15. juli 2010 22:06 by Ron in   //  Tags:   //   Comments

My old blog software was not updated a long time and to keep using it I had to replace it with something newer, something that also is usable on mobile devices.

The choice was easy, this software I also use on my other blog where I post my 1 year in photos.

On this blog I will try to keep everyone posted on the experiences I have with my gadgets, mostly bought in China. The Chinese market is growing fast and the production of new electronic devices is growing even faster. The western companies can hardly keep up with the Chinese builders and innovation .