Review more crabs I bought during quarantine

A few things has changed since we last spoke

Nikon FM

It's broken now. The mirror is stuck, and it has been a bit pain-in-the-ass to find places to repair it (that does not cost more than the camera itself). I feel like there is a lesson to be learned here 🧐


Pixel Slate

I sold it πŸ‘‹


Logitech K780: 7/10 (+1 from last time)

The cons that I mentioned last time are not as annoying after a few months have passed:

  • The extra width from the numpad is not as annoying as I remembered
  • Now that mostly-easy-to-use wireless adb feature becomes part of Android Studio (Canary), the issue with blocking the USB port is not really a problem anymore πŸ‘

And after trying out a few keyboard (you will see below), I feel like I was probably too harsh the last time around.


There are also things that I just forgot to mention

Xbox Controller: 7.5/10

I first got it when my friends said it would be easier to do Steam Remote Play with a controller for games like Unrailed or Overcook. But at the end, I ended up using it to play a lot of GTA 5, Euro Truck Simulator, and Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020.

Pros
  • When it works, it works great
Cons
  • It's already drifting a little bit, and it's making my FS2020 sessions a lot more annoying than I expected.
  • Technically not the controller's fault: but the Bluetooth on my machine is just inconsistent + laggy. I ended up getting the wireless dongle as well to work around it.

At the end of the day, I can still use it to enjoy all the games that I have bought on Steam, and that is all that matters πŸ€—


So here's what has changed since October 2020

A new PC: 8.5/10

I will definitely write a full blog post to explain the full story of why I got a new PC, so I will leave it here for now. This is all you're gonna get:

An open white computer case (CoolerMaster NR200), which shows a big CPU cooler, and a graphics card from Inno3D

LG 4K Monitor: 6.5/10

After getting a new PC, the next thing I need to sort out is the display. While I do have a borrowed monitor from the company, it's a shitty 24" 1080p display that just makes it feels worse than using the 16" MBP display. So I ended up getting another monitor. The exact model number is Β 32UK550-B, and I choose it because it's one of the cheapest 32" 4K monitor that has some HDR & color accuracy certification.

Pros
  • 32" 4K is amazing for productivity (once you get all the keyboard shortcut setup properly)
Cons
  • It's very HDRn't, and I feel like HDR looks worse than SDR
  • The viewing angle of the VA panel is not as good as the IPS in my Dell monitor. Who would have thought πŸ€”
  • 32" is actually a lot bigger than I expected, which forces me to move quite a few things around. Absolutely first world problem.

And now it's my work monitor, since I can easily have multiple windows opened at once, and combine with Spectacle Rectangle, it definitely makes my life easier (until MBP decides that 4k is too much and decides to spin it's fan up to 11). But if I can choose again, I would probably just say "screw it" and get a better 32" 4K monitor.


Rapoo 9300M Keyboard and Mouse Set: 1/10

This is more or less an impulse purchase: I was thinking about getting a DE layout keyboard to get myself less excuses in typing German. And I ended up picking this up in a local electronic store after trying it out.

Pros
  • It looks nice
  • The keystroke feels nice
  • Pretty affordable
Cons
  • Moving the "+-*/" and "Enter" key in the numpad to above it is the stupidest decision
  • While keystroke feels nice, the underlying mechanism is THE WORST. You can literally fully pressed it on the edge of each key, and it won't be registered as a keystroke.

I know that the company can build good peripherals, cause I have a Rapoo mouse that I enjoyed using (until I replaced it with a bigger Logitech), and iirc I also have used Rapoo keyboard back in HK. But dude this one is just bad. Thank god there is return policies in Germany πŸ‡©πŸ‡ͺ


Epson ET-2726: 7/10

I don't really remember what happened here: I know I wanted to see if normal printers can print pictures better than my Canon Selphy printer, but I definitely don't want to be stuck with buying expensive AF cartridges. And one thing led to another, I found out that inkjet printer with ink tank exists, and some of them are actually not super expensive.

Pros
  • I no longer have to plan to print documents. I can just do it whenever I want. For example, 12hrs before my vaccine appointment, I realized that there are forms that I have to bring, and no print shop will be open before my appointment.
  • I ended up using it mostly for it's scanning feature, to digitize old documents, postcards from Postcrossing, and more, and that's great. I have thrown out so many old papers that I don't need a physical copies anymore.
Cons
  • So far photo prints from it seems worse than my Selphy printer, which now that I think of it seems perfectly reasonable.
  • The scanning software is OK at best, so just like every scanner ever existed.
  • It's totally my fault, but I don't know that you can't just scan film on any flat bed scanner, which totally foils my plan.

Samsung Galaxy Tab A7: 7/10

One of the project that I am (/was?) working on is call Compose Composer, which aims to allow users to build apps (using compose) on Android Tablet. I build the basics of the app using emulator, and while it works, it's definitely annoying.

Pros
  • The speaker is pretty great
  • The display is pretty great
  • Android 11 already. Nice! πŸ‘
Cons
  • It's pretty slow. My now 3-year-old iPad Pro is still way faster.
  • Why does it have a camera hump. Just put a shittier camera in it, so that it don't stick out the back
  • The SD card is suspiciously slow
  • The power button is way too close to the volumn buttons

It's a cheap(-ish) tablet that helps me to get my job done, and that's all it needs to do.


IKEA GRIMAR tablet Stand: 9/10

This is very much just a shoutout to how good this stand is.

Pros
  • It's a good tablet stand, that is not stupidly expensive
Cons
  • I hate camera hump on the back of tablets

Tolino Shine 3: 8/10

I have already briefly mentioned it in my reMarkable 2 blog post that I got this eReader. And I got it instead of Kindle because I have spent too much time on Twitter, and I have started to hate what Amazon (the company, not the forest) has become. Plus their obsession with (semi-)propritory format is just annoying AF. And for the reason why this instead of other eReaders, it's mostly because it's the cheapest 300dpi eReader that has a reasonable digital book store.

Pros
  • The screen looks nice
  • It forces me to look into Thalia, the German book store, and turns out it does have a pretty big selection of English books as well in reasonable price πŸ€‘
  • I did ended up reading quite a few books on it, which is all that matters
Cons
  • I do envy Kindle Paperwhite with it's flush screen and waterproof design
  • Micro USB 🀦

Second-hand Nokia Lumia 920: 9/10

Another another project that I am (/was?) working on is call Metro Compose, which aims to build what the Metro design (Windows Phone 8) looks like using Compose (and a bonus Metro Theme library if I feel like it). And for about a week, I build the basics of the UI using videos and pictures I found online, but of course in order to get it as close as possible to the real thing, It'd be better to get a real thing, and the Nokia Lumia 920 (esp. the yellow one) is definitely one of the phone that I wished I would have owned back then.

Pros

  • I absolutely adore the build quality & chose of material. More phones should be made of this kind of hard plastic πŸ‘
  • The device has no cracks or dents, from the outside it looks barely used
  • I still quite like the design of WP8. It's a bit form-over-function, but because of how consistent it is, I actually don't mind that at all 😍

Cons

  • No working store
  • No reasonable way to side-load apps
  • There is a huge dead line of pixels in the middle, which is somewhat annoying

Now I just have to get my lazy-ass up and get back to working on the project…


Belkin BOOST↑UP Wireless Charger: 8/10

I have too many Qi charging pad at home already (all from IKEA), but one thing that always annoy me is that they are all flat, and sometimes I just want to have my phone play videos while it's charging wirelessly. And when I saw this on discount, my impulse just takes over and buy it on the spot.

Pros
  • It works as advertise
  • It's great when it's on discount
Cons
  • It has some coil whine

And here are some things that I don't want to give it a score just yet:

Second-hand Fujifilm X-T2

I spotted some descent deals on eBay for X-T2, and I want to give "using camera as webcam" a try as well. It just arrived a few days ago, first impression very nice, but let me try to bring it outside first.

Some random macro tubes

I think I bought it because I want to trying taking pictures of the films, but since I still don't have a proper light sauce, nor a way to secure the negative on a flag surface, the tubes are still waiting to be utilize. I would like to plan some other macro photography sessions, but first I need to learn some basics first, so that I don't just ended up taking picture of how dusty everything is.

Staedtler Noris Digital Jumbo Stylus

Another semi-impulse purchase is another stylus for the rM2, the idea is that I don't have to worry about carrying the official stylus around the house, I can just have 1 in the office, and 1 next to the bed. But for the last week, I haven't use my rM2 for writing much (since we got the week off work), so it's just sitting there, waiting to be used.

Logitech Z120 Speakers

I just adjusted my work setup, and put the laptop to the left hand side. Which means now all the sounds comes from the left, which bugs me more than it should. So I ended up grabbing a cheap (but not too cheap) speaker to put right next to the main monitor. So far it seems fine, but it probably can use a bit more intensive testing first.

Rollei C6i Tripod

Oh boy last time I mentioned that I don't know why I bought a small tripod, and this time I somehow convinced myself that "yea I should totally get a normal tripod to bring it to photo trips". And for months I was just using it as a weight for the curtains, but a few days ago I set it up (i.e. took the 1 leg off and use it as monopod) for my new WFH webcam setup. We'll see how that goes.

Others

There are also a few gadgets/electronics that I have bought, but I don't have much to say about them. Like the Shure SE215 headphone, which is nice, but I am not an audiophile to tell you the pros and cons.


I hope this will be the last post of the series, i.e. I will get the self control to not waste so much money. If not, maybe I should invest in better home security setup. Oh there is a new fancy security camera, wonder how much does it cost… πŸ’ΈπŸ’ΈπŸ’Έ

Louis Tsai

Louis Tsai

if someone can give me a lesson of how to adult that’d be great thank you.
Berlin