Tag Archives: fulfill-your

[GadgeTell] PSA: Sony Xperia Z3+, discounted Huawei TalkBand B2 available on Expansys

Xperia Z3+Import specialist Expansys has made it a habit of launching sizzling hot new Android devices before anyone else in the States, albeit initial supply generally tends to be limited, and prices a bit ostentatious. But it understandably costs to be first on the Xperia Z3+ bandwagon, for instance, so don’t act shocked the Snapdragon 810 powerhouse goes for $735 in an unlocked LTE 32 GB configuration.

Expansys USA promises to ship black, copper and green flavors in no more than five days, whereas the white model is still listed for pre-orders, sans a precise release date. It’s worth stressing there have been rising complaints of overheating on commercial Japanese Z4 units and international Z3+ prototypes, which Sony will look to iron out via software updates.

Only the OTAs aren’t ready for a wide-scale rollout yet, so it’s entirely possible the 735 bucks shall buy you a scorching slab incapable of getting mundane tasks done without random app shutdowns and system reboots.

Don’t want to take the risk, or searching for a cheaper wearable gizmo anyway? The Huawei TalkBand B2 may be worth a chance, even if technically, Expansys didn’t dispatch this quirky hybrid first. Available on Amazon at $179 and up, the part fitness watch/part Bluetooth earpiece contraption costs $155.99 through our favorite foreign merchandise shipper.

You can choose black or silvery white versions, get them delivered in 7 or 10 days respectively and use them as health-tracking accessories for both Android handhelds and iPhones. Tempting, huh?

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[GadgeTell] PSA: Sony Xperia Z3+, discounted Huawei TalkBand B2 available on Expansys

[GadgeTell] Get the LG G Pad F 8.0 for free from T-Mobile this Father's Day

LG G Pad F 8.0No better way to show the man who raised, educated and cared for you how much he means than getting him a gratis Android tablet from Magenta for Father’s Day. Wait, that came out wrong. Typically, the LG G Pad F 8.0 isn’t available for free.

It’s not that type of gadget. It’s low-cost, sure, fairly low-end and unendowed in the processing, screen resolution or RAM departments. But it still commands a full retail price of $239.76, and rightly so, with pre-installed Android 5.0 Lollipop software, quad-core Snapdragon 400 power, built-in stylus capabilities and 16 GB internal storage space.

A new arrival at T-Mobile, just as recently speculated, it can also be purchased on $9.99 monthly installments, with $0 down. Or $0 altogether, as long as you sign up to an Equipment Installment Plan (EIP), and maintain a 1 GB or higher postpaid Simple Choice Mobile Internet plan. Yes, it’s that easy.

Of course, the deal will not last for long, and it may well expire by the time you read this. So, consider yourself blessed if it’s still on, and order it ASAP to receive it by Sunday, June 21, when we celebrate the world’s greatest dads.

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[GadgeTell] Get the LG G Pad F 8.0 for free from T-Mobile this Father's Day

[AppleTell] IK Multimedia invites us into the Mic Room

IK Multimedia Mic Room

IK Multimedia has opened a world of amplifier sounds to us with their various guitar apps, and now they’re doing the same for vocalists. The company has just introduced Mic Room, a microphone-modeling app for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch.

The app makes sense, considering the variety of analog and digital microphone hardware they’ve already made available to iPhone users. Now, users of devices such as the iRig Field, iRig Mic HD

[EntertainmentTell] No Nightly News, no comedy either: Brian Williams to stay at NBC

A new groove for Brian Williams

A new groove for Brian Williams

The Brian Williams controversy at NBC News appears to have had the expected outcome: Williams will no longer anchor the NBC Nightly News, but will stay with NBC, according to a tentative agreement that’s been reached. An announcement is expected Thursday.

According to multiple media reports Wednesday, including one by CNN, Williams’ new role will mostly entail appearing on MSNBC, especially during breaking news events. Lester Holt will take over NBC Nightly News on a full-time basis, in the process becoming the first black news anchor on a major network.

Will audiences trust Williams on MSNBC? I suppose that’s the test, and if they don’t, they won’t be able to trot him out for news assignments anymore. I’m still wondering why they didn’t grant him his wish to do comedy full time. I mean, if you have him under contract for that many years anyway, why not just make Williams Jimmy Fallon’s sidekick or something?

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[EntertainmentTell] No Nightly News, no comedy either: Brian Williams to stay at NBC

[GamerTell] E3 2015: SpeedRunners is gleefully carefree competition

At one moment, I forgot about being at E3 2015, having a one-on-one meeting with a developer/publisher, about essentially being on a business-slash-work trip. That moment came after Alex Nichiporchik and Mike Rose of tinyBuild asked me if I had played

[GadgeTell] Microsoft Lumia 640 available from T-Mobile at last for $130

Lumia 640It’s taken Magenta way longer than originally anticipated to put Microsoft’s newest Windows Phone budget soldier up for grabs, but all’s well that ends well and now, the ball is in AT&T’s court. Obviously, Ma Bell can afford the luxury of keeping its customers waiting a couple more weeks, since both the Lumia 640 and 640 XL should get the American number two carrier’s vote of confidence.

Meanwhile, T-Mobile only sells the non-phablet 5-inch version, and even that one remains hard to come by in brick and mortar stores. On the bright side, if you hurry and order the Microsoft Lumia 640 online today, free overnight shipping awaits to help seal the deal.

Not that there’s any need for sweeteners, considering the impressive bang for buck factor and hefty discount compared to Amazon’s unlocked $195 price tag. Like Cricket Wireless, T-Mo lets you have the no-contract quad-core, 720p, 1 GB RAM-packing handheld at a ridiculously low $130.

$129.84, to be exact, which you can always choose to evenly split in 24 monthly payments of $5.41 a pop. Remember, a Windows 10 update could be merely a few months away, and out the box, you receive other robust mid-range goodies such as 4G LTE connectivity, Skype, Office and Cortana support, an 8 MP LED flash rear camera, 2,500 mAh battery, 8 GB internal storage and microSD expansion.


[GadgeTell] Microsoft Lumia 640 available from T-Mobile at last for $130

[GamerTell] Crackdown, Quantum Break and Scalebound won't be at Microsoft's E3 2015 conference

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Microsoft will not be showing E3 2014-announced titles

[GamerTell] Konami comes up with certain plan to fix everything – microtransactions

metal gear solid v konami
Let’s face it. Konami has been having a difficult time lately. With the loss of Hideo Kojima, the cancellation of Silent Hills, and their self-imposed removal from the New York Stock Exchange, it’s hard to say that the company is at the top of its game. In point of fact, it may be more correct to say that it is as low as it’s ever been. However, Konami isn’t the kind of company to take this lying down. The executives put their heads together and figured out something to put them right back on top.

Micro-transactions in Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain.

Via IGN, it would appear that there’s several clues that Konami plans on having micro-transactions in Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain. Micro-transactions have always proven to be a winning plan in major franchises. There’s never been a single complaint about the micro-transaction model of making money, especially when it comes to games that you have to pay for in order to play in the first place, so it only makes sense that Konami would give it a shot with Metal Gear V: The Phantom Pain.

Personally, I must applaud Konami for their vision and creativity. It takes a special kind of thinking to go the micro-transaction route after ensuring that they have utterly destroyed every single ounce of good will they’ve ever had. Not everyone can come up with a plan like that, but that’s why they’re Konami.

Rumors of on-disc DLC for costumes and missions remain unsubstantiated, but exactly the kind of ingenious idea Konami would come up with.

Source [IGN]

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[GamerTell] Konami comes up with certain plan to fix everything – microtransactions

[GadgeTell] TechnologyTell Review: Plantronics Blackwire C725 headset

Many of the headphones reviews on TechnologyTell are for audio enthusiasts and not much for the office environment. But since I like to review all sorts of products and mix it up once in awhile, I present to you one of the latest productivity-centric headsets from Plantronics.

The design of the Plantronics Blackwire C725 headset is simple, which is likely appropriate for an office/work environment anyway. You don’t need anything flashy or visually loud – you want hardware that is going to perform and last on a day-to-day basis. Although the Blackwire C725 is made of lightweight plastic, the construction is both flexible and durable. If you had to be rough with this headset, folding it up compact and tossing it into a bag, it can take it.

Plantronics Blackwire C725 headset box

It also comes with a soft carrying case!

As long as you’re not trying to seriously abuse it, it will last. Just take care with the ear cups, since they have the most fragile of connections throughout the entire body. The microphone boom, which sits on the left ear cup by default, has a wide rotating motion. It’s smooth, but holds its place wherever you’ve left it. The boom arm is also flexible, letting users position the tip closer or further away from the face.

Overall, the Blackwire C725 is a simple, corded on-ear headset that works with desktops and laptops. You can connect it to a mobile device with an OTG cable, but you’ll only benefit from sound and not from the microphone. Otherwise, this headset is plug-and-play; your computer should automatically install the basic drivers required for operation. Depending on your set up, you may have to instruct the operating system to set the Plantronics Blackwire C725 as default device for both audio and recording.

Although this headset has a tether, the cord should be long enough for one to move about and attend all corners of a standard bullpen or cubicle. The Blackwire C725 features an in-line remote for quick access to volume, the ANC (active noise cancelling) switch, microphone mute button, and the call button. Since this headset has a built-in sensor to automatically accept phone calls once you put it on, that call button may not see much use! The remote is easy to feel so you can press what you need without having to look. At the same time, the headset itself provides beeps to acknowledge your actions. There is also a clip on the back of the remote to pin it to clothing for convenient access.

If you’re not using some kind of softphone interface/application that also provides custom settings, you can download the Plantronics Hub to configure options to your heart’s content. But you can expect this headset to work great right out of the box.

Despite a standard focus toward office productivity, the Blackwire C725 works well in a pinch as an effective gaming communication headset. Sure, it may not be equipped with all the latest ‘gaming’ features and design, but it’s also not saddled with the baggage that can come with. If all you need/want is left & right channels, a quality microphone, and an in-line remote to toggle mute, volume, and ANC, then the Blackwire C725 does it. Best of all, it’s comfortably feather-light for long work (or play!) days.

In some ways, the padding on the Plantronics Blackwire C725 is more for show than not. Well, at least with the headband part. A foam cushion lines the bottom of the band, underneath a wrapping of soft, breathable leather. These headphones are so light and rest so well on the head, that the padding could have been omitted. But who is going to buy a headset that doesn’t have any cushioning, right?

Plantronics Blackwire C725 headset hand

Compact, lightweight, and springy.

The padding on each of the ear cups is ample enough, bordering on minimal. They don’t press on or interfere with my glasses stems, which is always greatly appreciated when it comes to headphones/headsets. Even though the pads appear flat, the foam that presses against each ear is in the shape of a ring. The full, on-ear leather material warms up a little, but not to the point of sweating. Not even after a full day of use with only a few breaks. Fatigue is kept at an admirable minimum with these on.

Thankfully, the ear cups have a pretty good reach when fully extended. The band gives off a soft click as you pull each side down with ease. I have a big head, so sometimes headphones are barely able to reach my ears in a good spot, leaving very little room for adjustment. But not these Blackwire C725, as they are long enough to provide me more options to position either the band or the cups for maximum comfort.

I really like how the Blackwire C725 ear cups have 180 degrees (actually a fuzz more than that) of swivel motion. Not only does it let the pads lie down flat, but you get fantastically equalized clamping force on the side of the head. The free movement lets the headset contour all shapes and sizes without any pinching or direct pressure. As long as the ear pads are centered well, you’ll get a good seal that keeps audio leaking to a minimum.

The very middle section of the headband is flexible and adjustable. If you gently bend it, you can see where stiff housing for the ear stems end and the malleable material begins. This is where you can fine-tune the desired level of clamping force for that perfect fit. It moves quite easily, and the memory is excellent. Combined with how light the material is, the band adjustment helps to make it feel as if you’re not even wearing anything.

With the volume pushed up to the point where it almost gets uncomfortable, sound does leak from the Plantronics Blackwire C725 headset. You’d have to be within a meter of it, and the environment would have to be quiet. Not library quiet, but maybe like a grocery store on an early Tuesday morning. But either way, no one is going to notice it over the sound of normal conversation if you happen to be talking in the microphone. Although I feel that the maximum volume is more than enough, some may think it could use more of a boost. Even with system and headset volumes turned all the way up.

Plantronics Blackwire C725 headset flat

The cups swivel to flatten out, also improves comfort.

Even though the Blackwire C725 may be meant for office/productivity, there’s nothing wrong with using them for audio entertainment. While one may not achieve the same level of depth and detail as with music-centric headphones, you won’t be disappointed for casual listening. Mostly. It also depends on what you choose to listen to.

If the music you like features a lot of lows (e.g. EDM, jungle, club stuff, etc.), you won’t be that impressed. But, I mean, it’s more for work. Relax, haha. While you can hear the lows, they have the least amount of attention and weight behind them. Totally flat and boring, arguably. Too much of it starts to make everything take on a muddy tone. But if rock, jazz, classical, or acoustic recordings with a focus on vocals, mids, or highs are your thing, you should like what you hear.

Plantronics Blackwire C725 headset ear cup

The light pad doesn’t get terribly warm.

Put on some Journey or Hozier, and you can hear the crisp clarity of instruments and, especially, vocals. Considering how the Blackwire C725 is meant more as a communications headset, it makes sense. Most of the attention to detail applies to the fine edges of instrumental sound and vocal nuances, though you can hear all prominent elements of a music track. The lateral movement between the left and right cups is very smooth and dynamic. Despite individual elements being separate enough from each other, there isn’t much depth to the soundstage.

Back to work, right? The Plantronics Blackwire C725 flexes its true strength for voice communication. So long as the other side of the conversation doesn’t have terrible equipment and/or a bad connection, you will hear other’s voices very clearly. Although the headset doesn’t do much to filter out their background noise, it does bring their spoken words up to the front to make it easier to hear.

As for your own voice, it’s like crystal. I’ve been told that my voice comes through very well, as if I were talking to the person only from a few feet away and not through a connection of electronics. Again, the quality is mitigated if the other side has sub-par equipment capturing their words. The microphone on the Plantronics Blackwire C725 does well to focus on me, ignoring other non-voice noises. While this headset can’t block out sharp or loud pandemonium, it does minimize most all of the random background activity that drones on in an office.

The active noise cancellation of the Blackwire C725 headphones is a reminder of why Plantronics has been in the business for such a long time. They know how to get ANC done right. While the level of ANC may not be the most powerful that Plantronics has to offer (it’s something better answered when multiple products are side-by-side for me to compare), it packs enough for your everyday office environment.

Plantronics Blackwire C725 headset remote

Durable, quality remote.

When you flip the ANC switch, you hear only the teensiest of a ‘click’ before having sound washed over by a void. There is no hiss – a telltale sign of poorly implemented active noise cancelling – although good ears can hear a very thin, high-frequency pitch.

The dull roar of air conditioning, appliances, freeway/street traffic noises outside of the building, and the hum that comes from electronics (e.g. internal cooling fans of desktops and laptops) are practically eliminated. General white noise and hushed conversations also disappear into nothingness by the Blackwire C725.

Sharper noises and higher frequencies are still audible. So while the ANC will block out monotonous and/or machine-level noise from the floor-standing copier, the pitched whines and chittering from gears filter on through. If it happens to be raining, the ANC turns the sound of water hammering on the roof into a light tinkling of dainty bells. More or less. Anything that is sudden and/or loud enough can still be heard with decent clarity through the ANC. You’ll hear if a pen drops on the floor nearby, but probably not someone softly snoring in the cubicle/room next to you.

Plantronics Blackwire C725 would be useful to cut out airplane engine noise, although it works only when plugged into a device USB port. An external battery pack won’t do it, but a smartphone or tablet that supports OTG connectivity (and you’ll have to have an OTG cable, too) will work. Then all you have to fuss about is the long cable.

If you’re going to be sitting around with a headset all day long, comfort should be the top concern. Thankfully, the Plantronics Blackwire C725 gets the comfort down with its even clamping force and lightweight frame. When you decide to take a break at work, it won’t be due to headphone fatigue – you’re probably going to be taking a lunch or a brief 15 minutes.

The Blackwire C725 delivers the quality communication that one would expect from Plantronics. Voices on both sides of the conversation are crisp and clear. And if part of your break includes streaming audio, this headset does a fine job at playing music in stereo. Best of all, the ANC on this headset is fantastic for blocking out all the ambient noise one is likely to encounter in a work environment.

At the end of the day, the Plantronics Blackwire C725 folds down for easy carrying. Being such the quality headphone device that it is, I’d recommend bringing it home nightly. You never know who might want to secretly borrow yours without permission! Tell them to go buy their own – they won’t be disappointed.

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[GadgeTell] TechnologyTell Review: Plantronics Blackwire C725 headset

[GamerTell] Bloodstained vanquishes Kickstarter milestones

It’s getting close! Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night has mere hours to hit its final stretch goal of five million dollars. Having broken the $4.5 million mark ($150,000 coming from Paypal) and passing $4,790,000 as of 11am CT on June 12, 2015, Koji Igarashi’s Castlevania spiritual successor only needs a little less than its initial funding amount to reach the $5 million point. Bloodstained has flown by other video game projects in terms of contributions, including Mega Man spiritual successor and