The Register Columnists

PC Advisor

Contact Mail Follow RSS feed
The Register breaking news


Review The flat-panel market has traditionally been out of bounds to the consumer. But while individuals with bottomless bank accounts will continue to set their sights on the larger 17in and 18in models, a basic 15in flat-panel can now be snapped up for the same price as a quality 19in CRT monitor. Or even less perhaps - pound for …
PC Advisor, 21 Sep 2001
The Register breaking news

TerraCam USB TerraTec

Review Some webcams try to incorporate all the functionality of small digital cameras. They come with batteries and internal memory, so they don't have to be tethered to a PC. These additions push the price up and often result in a product that's a bad digital camera with webcam capabilities rather than a value-for-money webcam. The …
PC Advisor, 20 Sep 2001
The Register breaking news

Hitachi CML170

Review Saving desk space is a good reason for buying a flat-panel monitor, but for some it's about making a fashion statement. With that in mind, the attractive midnight blue Hitachi CML170 makes an instant impression and should rise to the top of many a wish-list. Of course, we wouldn't recommend that you purchase any PC product on …
PC Advisor, 18 Sep 2001
The Register breaking news

Wacom Graphire2

Review Home PC users increasingly have access to graphics software previously only available to professional designers. Now the high-end accessories used by computer artists and CAD (computer-aided design) users are also becoming affordable options for consumers. The Graphire2, comprising cordless mouse, pen and pad, is one such tool …
PC Advisor, 17 Sep 2001
The Register breaking news

Guillemot Thrustmaster Top Gun Fox 2 Pro

Review Some games are more sensitive than others, with USAF ranking highly in this department - try to play it with a Microsoft SideWinder Pro and you'll end up eating a fair amount of tarmac. It's a fine contender, then, to put the Top Gun Fox 2 Pro through its paces. Control of the game was significantly easier than with the …
PC Advisor, 13 Sep 2001
The Register breaking news

Trust Wireless Audio/Video Transmitter 100V

Review Our homes are gradually filling up with a multitude of entertainment systems and computer devices. While this is welcome, the cables they require are not. Getting devices to communicate without cumbersome cabling not only eases installation it also makes for a tidier house. Trust's wireless kit is designed for precisely this …
PC Advisor, 12 Sep 2001
The Register breaking news

Rock Agenda Si

Review Rock is best known for offering speedy performance at a competitive price. The Agenda Si breaks with this tradition, but with this expensive price tag comes a top-notch specification, and it's well worth a look as a serious desktop replacement. While the 1GHz Pentium III processor is only average, the 384MB of RAM isn't. The Si …
PC Advisor, 10 Sep 2001
The Register breaking news

Acer TravelMate 210

Review Acer is a big player in the notebook market, making products for many better-known brands. And, despite a fat-cat customer base, it also has some genuine bargains for the more cost-conscious buyer. We tested the TravelMate 210, one of Acer's low-cost models, to see what sort of a notebook you get for under £650. As you might …
PC Advisor, 07 Sep 2001
The Register breaking news

Atlas Flyer 3400

Review The Atlas Flyer lives up to its name, swooping in to beat all rivals with a blistering WorldBench score and a ridiculously low price tag. It comes with a 1GHz Pentium III flip-chip processor twinned with 256MB of RAM. However, its WorldBench score of 161 beats all rivals. Even better, it costs a reasonable £1000. The Atlas …
PC Advisor, 06 Sep 2001
The Register breaking news

Epson PhotoPC 3100Z

Review Epson sets a high standard in image quality and the capabilities of the PhotoPC 3100Z won't disappoint. Professionals may find the lack of manual configuration limiting, but it's a good choice for novices looking to upgrade. The Epson is an easy-to-use, mid-range camera with great picture quality. However, there have been …
PC Advisor, 04 Sep 2001
The Register breaking news

Iomega Peerless

Review Backing up data should be second nature to any computer user. Given the stability of PCs and the software we run on them, it's a wonder that anyone fails to protect their files by keeping copies. One reason why people fail to back up their data is the lack of media that can cope with the large amount of data they need to store. …
PC Advisor, 03 Sep 2001
The Register breaking news

Ricoh RDC I-700

Review The capabilities of Ricoh's new RDC I-700 extend way beyond the functionality of a normal digital camera. Based on the similiar RDC-7, it is Web-enabled so you can send photographs by email or upload them directly to the Internet. It's a niche product with a high price, but an interesting device that deserves our Recommended …
PC Advisor, 29 Aug 2001
The Register breaking news

Minolta Dimage 7

Review The Minolta Dimage 7 is a high-end camera with a price and specification to match. At just over £850 it won't appeal to all, but if you need a good quality single lens reflex device then this Recommended Buy is worth investigating. You'd be hard pushed to find a 4Mp (megapixel) camera below £1000. However, Minolta has given the …
PC Advisor, 28 Aug 2001
The Register breaking news

Sony Vaio PCG-SR31K and PCG-C1VFK

Review Sony has updated its notebook range yet again, with the release of two new machines: the PCG-SR31K and PCG-C1VFK. Both models incorporate two new features: integrated Bluetooth for wireless communication and a Memory Stick slot. The SR31K is a slim, light sub-notebook that packs a fair amount of power. The 750MHz Mobile Pentium …
PC Advisor, 24 Aug 2001
The Register breaking news

Dell Inspiron 8100

Review It's not often that a product leaves us speechless, but this month the Dell Inspiron 8100 enters this exclusive club. It is without a doubt the best notebook we have ever seen. It's not the most portable, or the most stylish, but it's the first mobile PC to leave even the most powerful desktops for dust. It is powered by Intel' …
PC Advisor, 23 Aug 2001
The Register breaking news

Evesham Axis 1400

Review The £1199 Evesham Axis may come with a Budget PC price tag, but its list of specifications would comfortably slot into our Power category. It hits the ground running with a blistering AMD Athlon 1.4GHz processor, and never really slips out of top gear. The 256MB of ultra-fast DDR memory is equally impressive, while the 40GB hard …
PC Advisor, 22 Aug 2001
The Register breaking news

Canon LPB 810

Review Canon LPB 810 When we reviewed this printer's predecessor, the LBP 800, it did not meet with our approval; the only point we could find in its favour was the free cuddly toy in the box. It was relatively speedy, but quality was very poor. With the release of the low-cost 810, there has been quite a turnaround, and although …
PC Advisor, 21 Aug 2001
The Register breaking news

Epson Stylus Photo 895

Review As digital cameras are replacing their film counterparts, photographers are being forced to use PCs to view and print their images. Epson has come up with a solution enabling PC-phobes to output images without ever touching a computer. The Epson Stylus 895's integrated adapter means you can take the memory card from any …
PC Advisor, 20 Aug 2001
The Register breaking news

Canon Digital Ixus V

Review Canon continues to build on the success of its ultra-compact Digital Ixus camera with the introduction of the Ixus V. This version sports a lower price tag, but its key selling points remain the same: its tiny size (at 190g it is easily the most portable camera we've seen) and gorgeous styling. It retains the brushed metal …
PC Advisor, 16 Aug 2001
The Register breaking news

Best Price Poweroid 2002

Review Although clock speeds go up with increasing regularity, if you need more power than current processors can supply the only option is to use more than one in the same PC. Symmetric multiprocessing (SMP) set-ups usually involve dual configurations, although more processors can be catered for. Using two slower processors rather …
PC Advisor, 15 Aug 2001
The Register breaking news

Fujitsu-Siemens LifeBook S-4572

Review The LifeBook S-4572 only just scrapes in under the heading of Budget notebook at £1499, but this high price is partly compensated for by a few extras. The most notable of these is a combined DVD-ROM/CD-RW drive - the first we've seen at this price. The drive offers eight-speed DVD playback and 24-/8-/4-speed read/write/rewrite …
PC Advisor, 14 Aug 2001
The Register breaking news

Nikon Coolpix 995

Review The last Coolpix model we reviewed didn't fare too well. However, it seems Nikon may have listened to our criticisms because the 995 irons out some of the problems we had with its predecessor. There are some minor changes on the hardware, but the unique swivel chassis remains the same. Nikon has split the camera, so you can …
PC Advisor, 13 Aug 2001
The Register breaking news

SiPix Mobile

Review We've seen a number of small, portable printers before, but nothing quite like the SiPix Mobile. It has its roots in the belief that road warriors still like to work from hard copy. It can be connected up to a notebook or PDA via an infrared or serial connection, allowing you to print out from either. Installation and use is …
PC Advisor, 10 Aug 2001
The Register breaking news

Mesh Elite P4 1.8GT

Review Processor speeds seem to be without ceiling. A year ago the Pentium III had yet to touch 1GHz - now, 12 months on, the Pentium 4 is nudging 2GHz. Intel's 2GHz chip is expected later this month - for now, the highest Pentium clock speed you can buy is 1.8GHz. As P4 processors have proved rather disappointing when it comes to …
PC Advisor, 07 Aug 2001
The Register breaking news

Sony Vaio PCV-LX1

Review Rather than enter the market quietly and go along with the crowd, Sony likes to make the existing competition look dull and lacklustre. Games consoles and notebooks are two areas where Sony has succeeded in stirring up its rivals, and it has now decided to turn its hand to desktop PCs. Desktop PCs are renowned for being big, …
PC Advisor, 06 Aug 2001
The Register breaking news

Kyocera Mita FS-1000+

Review The Kyocera Mita is not a familiar name, but the printer manufacturer has been around for some time. Its experience shines through in the FS-1000+ to win our Recommended award. While this printer isn't the cheapest in the chart, its performance is comparable to that of a more expensive model. It only offers a parallel connection …
PC Advisor, 03 Aug 2001
The Register breaking news

Visioneer PrimaScan Colorado 2600U

Review The PrimaScan 2600U offers an excellent combination of price, ease of use and quality. It may never live up to the quality settings of the more expensive models, but it performs well enough given its hardware specifications. Visioneer PrimaScan Colorado 2600U The 42-bit colour depth is impressive and the 600x1200dpi (dots per …
PC Advisor, 02 Aug 2001
The Register breaking news

Sony Vaio Music Clip MC-S50

Review Sony has an uncanny knack of coming up with the 'must-have' products of the moment, seemingly unhindered by their high price tags. The Music Clip digital music player maintains this trend - it's delightfully dinky, but has a less-than-petite price tag. Sony Vaio Music Clip MC-S50 Styled in the eye-catching silver and purple …
PC Advisor, 01 Aug 2001
The Register breaking news


Review JVC GR-DVP3E Small may well be beautiful, but in DV (digital video) camera circles it also tends to mean a trade-off in quality. This preconception may be challenged with the release of JVC's new pocket-sized GR-DVP3E, a tiny yet powerful mini-DV model that has made remarkably few compromises to maintain its Lilliputian …
PC Advisor, 31 Jul 2001
The Register breaking news

NEC MultiSync LCD1700M+

Review NEC MultiSync LCD1700M+ Flat-panel prices have been in freefall for the past few months. Where once such a sleek, slim screen would only grace the desks of corporate financiers and rich consumers, 15in models are now cheap enough to enter the mass market. But what of the larger flat-panel monitors, which used to cost £1,000 …
PC Advisor, 30 Jul 2001
The Register breaking news

Matrox RT2500

Review If you want an example of how far consumer technology has advanced over the last few years then look no further than the world of digital video (DV). Compare, for example, the dodgy picture quality of the first batch of home video camcorders with the pristine images that you can now get from DV cameras costing as little as £500 …
PC Advisor, 27 Jul 2001
The Register breaking news

Pioneer DVR-A03

Review DVD is currently hyped as the storage medium of the future. Perhaps so, but it has remained prohibitively expensive until recently. Pioneer's DVR-A03 is the first DVD-RW drive to arrive in the our Test Centre, so we were keen to assess the merits of this emerging technology. A quick glance at the specifications reveals the …
PC Advisor, 26 Jul 2001
The Register breaking news

Palm m500 and m505

Review Palm set the benchmark for keyboard-free PDAs with the introduction of the PalmPilot. Since then, competition from innovative developers such as Handspring has left the original design looking tired. With its latest devices, however, Palm proves that it's still got what it takes to trounce the competition and keep its customers …
PC Advisor, 25 Jul 2001
The Register breaking news

Kodak DX3500

Review The DX3500 is aimed at newcomers to digital photography and comes bundled with Kodak's new EasyShare software, which makes transferring snaps to your PC a doddle. Once they're on your system, it helps you to edit and share them. The camera comes with a dual-purpose USB docking cradle, which both recharges the NiMH battery ( …
PC Advisor, 23 Jul 2001
The Register breaking news

Archos Jukebox HD-MP3 Recorder

Review When we reviewed Archos' Jukebox 6000, we felt it was a good product hampered by some niggling flaws. Now the French manufacturer has released an updated version: the HD-MP3 Recorder. While many features remain the same - you can still play MP3s or back up your files to the 6GB hard drive - the updated model also allows you to …
PC Advisor, 23 Jul 2001
The Register breaking news

Mustek GSmart 300

Review Mustek is best known for making flatbed scanners, but it's been branching out lately, launching a range of projectors, a DVD player and now a webcam, the GSmart 300. The GSmart 300 is a sleek, silver unit that can also be used as a digital camera. Once you've taken your snaps, you can plug the camera into your PC via the USB …
PC Advisor, 23 Jul 2001
The Register breaking news

Panasonic SV-SD75 Audio Player

Review If Panasonic is to be believed, portable gadgets are no longer just about practicality - they're stylish fashion statements to be worn as clothing accessories. So the SV-SD75 Audio Player is part of Panasonic's E-wear range and it can be worn as a watch or a pendant. In either of these guises it's not that appealing, but as a …
PC Advisor, 19 Jul 2001
The Register breaking news

Canon PowerShot A20

Review Canon's PowerShot A20 caters for novices on a tight budget. To keep costs down it's been stripped of features and, in the highly competitive low-end market, it struggles to make an impact. It's good to see high 2Mp (megapixel) quality in the sub-£300 price range, but the market has shifted so quickly that now it's not enough to …
PC Advisor, 13 Jul 2001
The Register breaking news

Samsung SyncMaster 151MP

Review Flat-panel display prices may be falling, but if you want something above the norm that offers a few extras you still have to pay the price for it. Samsung’s 151MP is not only gorgeous to look at, it also comes with a built-in TV tuner, which means it can double up as a television. However, all this does add up to almost £900 …
PC Advisor, 12 Jul 2001
The Register breaking news

Sony Clié PEG-S300/E

Review You've got to hand it to Sony – it knows how to make an attractive gadget. Its latest lovely-looking creation is dubbed Communication, Link, Information and Entertainment – or put simply, Clié. As with all Sony products, the Clié has been well marketed and hits the shelves amid plenty of promotion. But can it possibly live up …
PC Advisor, 11 Jul 2001
The Register breaking news

Ericsson R520

Review Ericsson's new R520 is a feature-packed phone. Not only does it include built-in Bluetooth, WAP 1.2 and HSCSD (high speed circuit-switched data), it also supports GPRS (general packet radio service). GPRS promises faster downloads and always-on connections for mobile users, with billing based on the amount transferred rather …
PC Advisor, 10 Jul 2001
The Register breaking news

Eizo FlexScan L461

Review Flat-panel displays are fast moving out of the luxury category into the affordable one, with prices falling from around £700 for a good 15in model to under £400. As this entry-level screen size becomes more reasonable, manufacturers are now offering users extra inches. Eizo's FlexScan is one such screen. Instead of the standard …
PC Advisor, 05 Jul 2001
The Register breaking news

Nokia 3330

Review Nokia announced three new phones at the IT tradeshow CeBit this year, of which the 3330 is the first to hit the streets. Building on the 3310's design, the 3330 adds WAP support, the ability to download games, and a couple of other enhancements. The 3330 is aimed at the mass market and features all the things you would expect …
PC Advisor, 04 Jul 2001
The Register breaking news

Agfa ePhoto CL34

Review The popularity of digital cameras appears to know no bounds at the moment, with many PC owners trading in their film cameras for digital models. The latest film-free snapper vying for your custom is Agfa's ePhoto CL34, a 1.3Mp (megapixel) unit with a top resolution of 1280x960 pixels. What's more, it can capture short bursts of …
PC Advisor, 03 Jul 2001
The Register breaking news

Jadetec MicroPC

Review PC manufacturers are a conservative lot, and have found it hard to deviate from the beige box. As a result, the PC faithfuls have been forced to cast envious glances towards Apple' designer Macs. Refusing to run with the crowd, however, is newcomer Jadetec. Its MicroPC compresses an entire PC into a compact 950g box, roughly …
PC Advisor, 02 Jul 2001
The Register breaking news

Videologic VividXS

Review Compromises are never easy to accept, and while Nvidia's GeForce 3 technology is expensive, the sub-£100 alternatives of ATI's Radeon VE and the GeForce 2 MX cards aren't more tempting. Be thankful, then, for Videologic's VividXS, a 32MB card that offers near-GeForce 2 GTS performance at almost half the price. Although …
PC Advisor, 29 Jun 2001
The Register breaking news

Fujitsu-Siemens B Series Bluetooth

Preview Fujitsu-Siemens will soon be updating its B Series range of laptops to incorporate Bluetooth functionality, available either as an option via USB or built-in. We looked at some early prototypes of the latter to see how they performed. It's still early days for Bluetooth consumer devices, despite the fact that the technology has …
PC Advisor, 29 Jun 2001
The Register breaking news

Sony DSC-P1

Review Sony has always had a knack when it comes to consumer devices, and the DSC-P1 is no exception. Small, capable and easy to use, it stands out as more than just a PC peripheral. The DSC-P1 is a 3.3Mp (megapixel) camera, allowing a maximum resolution of 2048x1536. As usual, images can be stored as either JPEG or TIFF files. …
PC Advisor, 29 Jun 2001
The Register breaking news

NEC Powermate i-Select XL3 A1300

Review Not to be outdone by other 1.3GHz Athlons, NEC's Powermate i-Select XL3 A1300 has a couple of extra tricks up its sleeve. Built around a 1.3GHz processor and 256MB of DDR (double data rate) RAM, its WorldBench 2000 score of 182 is more than respectable. NEC has also managed to bundle two firsts into this Power system - a new …
PC Advisor, 29 Jun 2001
The Register breaking news

Apple iBook

Review Apple's iBook has undergone a significant redesign of late and the result is a laptop that's sure to appeal to a wide range of users. Gone are the bright colours of previous models. In their place is a lighter, smaller machine that won't embarrass you when you're seen with it in public. At 2.2kg and just 3.4cm thick, the iBook …
PC Advisor, 29 Jun 2001