Plextor M5 Pro Xtreme PX-256M5P

Up until I embarked on this review, my strongest memory of Plextor is their dominance of the optical drive market in the 1990s. Simply put, they had the best CD-ROM writer in the days when making “coasters” was commonplace. These days Plextor has retained their storage beginnings with a focus on Solid State Drives (SSD). DigitalReviews would like to thank Plextor for providing a M5Pro (PX-256M5P) Xtreme for review. Here’s another review from Kevin Cheng.

Synology DiskStation DS-1512+ : a 5 Bay Powerhouse

It is no secret that DigitalReviews is a big fan of Synology products. We have reviewed a number of their Networked Attached Storage over the past few years and have always been a fan. This time around Synology has kindly supplied a DS-1512+ for a review with a different focus. And here is Kevin Cheng’s report.

Apricorn Aegis Bio 3.0 – a very secure 1 TB External Hard Drive

This review can be short because we have reviewed many products from Apricorn, including an earlier model of the Aegis Bio with fingerprint reader.
We will state our bias upfront: we are fans of this Californian outfit which specialises in manufacturing external storage devices with great security features. However, I’m not particularly a fan of fingerprint readers, much preferring keypad security.
So how did we go with this one? Check out DigitalReviews.net ‘ s take on it.

From the archive: Innovative New Privacy Device Makes the “Cone of Silence” a Reality

Who hasn’t dreamed of the Cone of Silence, especially in today’s land of cubicles and cellphones? In my office I can hear the guy next to me right down to his keyboard taps and sighs. Thanks to a new product called “Babble” the days of overheard conversations may be history.

“Two people in an office here were having a tête-à-tête, but it was impossible for a listener standing nearby to understand what they were saying. The conversation sounded like a waterfall of voices, both tantalizingly familiar and yet incomprehensible. The cone of silence, called Babble, is actually a device composed of a sound processor and several speakers that multiply and scramble voices that come within its range. About the size of a clock radio, the first model is designed for a person using a phone, but other models will work in open office space.

“The voice scrambling technology used in Babble was developed by Applied Minds, a research and consulting firm founded by Danny Hillis, a distinguished computer architect, and Bran Ferren, an industrial designer and Hollywood special effects wizard. Babble, which is intended to function as a substitute for walls and acoustic tiling, is an example of a new class of product that uses computing technology to shape sound. Already on the market are headphones that can cancel extraneous noises and stereo systems that can direct sound to a particular location.

“The system will be introduced in June by Sonare Technologies, a new subsidiary of Herman Miller, the maker of the Aeron chair, as part of an effort to move beyond office furniture. The company plans to sell the device for less than $400 through consumer electronics and office supply stores.” Source: NY Times

Hands On with A.C. Ryan PlayOn!HD3

Read more: Hands On with A.C. Ryan PlayOn!HD3 It has been a while since DigitalReviews visited the networked media player space. To mark our return, we would like to welcome A.C. Ryan’s Playon!HD3 to the DigitalReviews test bench.

Despite the rise and rise of complete media center solutions such as XBMC and Plex, there seems to still be a market for an appliance based solution. So let’s see how the Playon!HD3 performs. Check out Kevin Cheng’s article here.

Eight Bay NAS Overture – Synology DS1812+

Be it small businesses or avid prosumers, storage is one place where less is never going to be more. Understanding this, Synology’s DS1812+ has not four, five or six but eight hard drive bays. With 3TB drives entering affordability, that’s 24TB in one box.

Read on for our full review by Paul Moons.

ESDS Electronic Shark Defense System

Do shark shields or electronic shark defense systems work, you ask? Sure they do! Well it did last time we tested a similar product that produced an electrical field to keep the big “bities away” (an alternative to the ESDS, the Freedom 7 was reviewed here on this site in 2009 – see link ).

We have been using an electronic shark shield pretty much every second day in summer and occasionally even during winter for swimming protection since 2009 and we have not been eaten yet, although nearby sightings have been made. We are absolute believers in the principles that these work on and have done so since the practical first evaluation. We have just been given one that’s just been released to the market, the ESDS.
Check out Joe Baker’s review here.

ION Air Pro WiFi Action Camera – Reviewed

It’s an ever widening field populated by the likes of GoPro, Contour, Sony and Ion Air.
Most of these action cameras sport the same type of basic features: tough build, wide angle view, Full HD video and stills. Where they differ is image quality, controls, waterproofing built-in, shape, and, increasingly, WiFi capability. Most of them also have associated apps for iPhone and Android platforms these days.
Let’s look at the top-of-the-line model from a relative newcomer, ION, here.