April Gadget Reviews Roundup 2015
We’re done with another month and that means we have a new batch of gadget reviews for you to look at. This includes three variants of the ASUS ZenFone 2, the Xiaomi Redmi 2, ASUS Transformer Book T300 Chi, AWEI headphones, Lenovo S90, ASUS ROG GR8, and the The Order: 1886 game for the PS4. Read our Gadget Reviews Roundup for April 2015.
I like a lot of things about the AWEI ES-16HI, but the design and the volume intensity are deal breakers for me. The design is functional in almost any way that I want it to be, but it lacks sophistication. As for the sound output, I personally don’t think I can live with earphones that allow me to hear noise because the volume is too weak.
The AWEI ES-700i and the ES-800M are good to listen to for their prices, but we think you should just go for the ES-700i and forgo the ES-800M, because unless you want the classier looking metal and carrying case, the ES-700i will you get a microphone and a better audio experience.
Four months into 2015, I still wouldn’t give up this camera for any other in the market, because even for its price of Php44,990 (lower for cash purchases and in other retailers), there is just no camera that’s near as good as this one that can fit in your pocket. Heck, it’s even better than some similarly priced bigger cameras in some aspects.
If you just want a plain but fun shooter game that you can just play and relax to and not think of strategies or what mission you should do next, then this game could be right up your alley. Otherwise, you might be finding yourself asking more from the game.
For Php280, there’s no denying that AWEI has produced a decently-sounding in-ear headphone that’s great for casual listening in the form of the ES600M. You may not get in-line controls, but the tangle-free cable is a good reason not to snag a pair of these. If you’re all about that bass (and not the overpowering treble), this is a great buy without having to break the bank.
It comes with a familiar and solid design, pretty good hardware with LTE support, all packed in a very price-conscious offering. We’re pretty sure Asus will be selling hundreds of thousands of these units once they become officially available this May.
The ASUS ROG GR8 is a powerful gaming machine in a portable yet good-looking package. It’s good for those who want a gaming rig that is quiet, doesn’t take up much space and can be easily moved around. It’s ideal in small offices, bedroom, and the living room. In addition, it comes with a free M801 mechanical keyboard and ROG Gladius gaming mouse so all the user needs to provide is a monitor.
As far as design goes, there’s really not much to say about the Asus ZenFone 2 ZE500CL (or any of the other handsets under the ZenFone 2 lineup for that matter) that hasn’t been said on other ZenFones that we’re featured here in the past. We’ve come to expect well-built devices from ASUS, and we’re glad to report that the Taiwanese firm didn’t disappoint on their new smartphones, albeit it’s thicker and heftier than your average smartphone in today’s standards.
Having an ASUS VivoPC around is convenient in a way that you can bring it on out of town business trips, for example, and still have a capable rig at your disposal. It’s far from running a high-def video game smoothly, but it performs well to get work done. With its compact form factor, bringing it with you is not much of a hassle as it can fit easily inside a backpack or a travelling case.
For the most part, the Lenovo S90 was able to deliver on what it intended to bring the mid-range market – a 5-inch smartphone with stylish design, a good set of cameras, decent specs, and support for both dual-SIM and LTE connectivity.
The Acer Liquid X1 is a capable smartphone that packs a vibrant 5.7-inch display, 4G LTE connectivity, a very handy rear key, and decent performance and battery life. It’s good multimedia phone thanks to its large display, ClearMotion feature, and DTS-HD Premium audio. As a gaming device, the hardware configuration is enough to keep up with graphic intensive Android games. On the downside, the speaker is not as loud as we want it to be even with the help of DTS.
The Transformer Book T300 Chi supposedly offers a really good concept — thinner and lighter than your typical ultrabook, comparable performance to a Core i3 or Core i5 with much better battery life than the 5-7 hours most 2014 ultrabooks promised, all cooked up in a very elegant and beautiful body.
The Bose CineMate 15 delivers a really good auditory experience in a relative small and simple package. It is indeed the simplest soundbar system from Bose as it is easy to setup. Sound-wise, it’s a drastic improvement from the usual audio quality your TV can provide. We used it for movies, music, ordinary cable TV shows, as well as gaming. The crisp trebles and wall-shaking bass will immerse you in a rich auditory experience.
It’s always difficult to come up with the successor to a product that many considered to be the best. So rather than coming up with an entirely different beast on their next release, Kingston retained pretty much everything that made the HyperX Cloud such a huge hit in gaming industry and improved on the things that were lacking on the first build.
It’s no secret Asus has generated a lot of interest in the Zenfone 2, fueled by their earlier success with the Zenfone 5 last year. The Zenfone 2 ZE551ML promises a significant upgrade to the Zenfone line-up. It comes with a familiar and solid design, pretty good hardware with LTE support, all packed in a very price-conscious offering. We’re pretty sure Asus will be selling hundreds of thousands of these units once they become officially available in the Philippines this May.
Xiaomi has made a well-constructed device in the form of the Redmi 2. The Php5,999 price tag may be a bit higher than the first time the Redmi line was introduced last year, but its great features make up for the price — the well-formed design and display, the inclusion of Dual-LTE connectivity, and the continuing efforts of the MIUI skin all made the experience stellar and something that’s worth the penny.
The Huawei UltimoPower AM180 ANC earphones is priced slightly higher than entry level products in its category, but definitely way more affordable than the expensive ones. For Php3,490 you get a premium- and unique-looking device, impressive sound quality (especially for the bass heads out there), and a compact build that lets you easily bring and use it anywhere.
The Imation LINK Power Drive is a handy gadget to have around if you share the same sentiments as we do like an easily-drained battery and a limiting internal storage. It proved its purpose well as we could easily dump our files on it whenever our local storage got filled up with photos. As for charging it also eliminates the hassle of bringing your own cable that dangles and tangles with other things since the LINK already has its own short cable that neatly tucks away after each use.
For Php250, the AWEI Q3i aren’t as bad as what you might think after reading this review. It does produce a decent sound for casual listening, and the bass is. This build of the accesory, however, is rather questionable if it would last long enough. With that being said, you get your money’s worth, as it is one of the most affordable in-ear headphones with a built-in microphone we’ve seen so far.
What the NUC offers is a combination of a very tight form factor, low power consumption and a bit of flexibility. Granted, you cannot add your choice of a discrete graphics card but the Intel HD 5500 should suffice (should be in the same level of performance, or slightly lower than a dedicated GeForce 820M GPU). Still, you are able to pick the storage type and capacity and also crank up the RAM to the maximum.