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Showing posts from July, 2010

MIO is a real PITA

I live in a valley and I have longed for good TV reception for the longest time. I have also been a Singtel customer ever since I have my cellphone. So getting broadband from them was a natural progression. Yet when I found out when MIO cable TV first came out, that my home was not covered, it was a real disappointment. Then recently I checked again and they now said my area was covered. So I happily rushed into the nearest Singtel Shop to get signed up. That’s when my ordeal began…
So I made an appointment for a 9am installation. The chap comes at about 10am, which is fine, since he has a window of 2 hours. But that morning, my internet had been cut and I was left in the wilderness… then he tried all ways of connecting, but I had suspected that when they cut my connection in anticipation of the installation, those chaps forgot about activating the new line! So true enough, the man tried all ways of trouble shooting, blaming the older filters, bad phone lines – which was crazy since I …

Percy Jackson & The Olympians: The Lightening Thief (DTS-HD MA) - disc review

Percy Jackson & The Olympians: The Lightening Thief (DTS-HD MA) – Tier 1Imitation is one of the most sincere forms of flattery and here, movies like Clash of the Titans, Harry Potter and even High School Musical must be rather flattered for this adaption of a series of stories borrows from all of the above and more.However, let me ask the obvious, why in Zeus’ name do we find Greek, yes, Greek gods in the middle of US of A??? The male and female leads, plus the obligatory sidekick all could be models for some teen magazine and I assume their roles is to distract from the many loopholes in a paper thin storyline, which relies on stars which all look like gods and goddesses, have nice blue eyes and megawatt smiles. Throw in a plot of thievery, conspiracy and add the old story of demi-gods which arose from the amorous ways of the gods, and you have this movie. It might keep your children entertained with plenty of good looking characters, and they might be willing to look past the fa…

Despicable Me - a movie review

Pixar has ruled the roost when it comes to animation, and other companies have tried but few come close to challenging them for movies which have excellent graphics, but even more important, an excellent and touching story mixed with humour and excitement.Despicable Me (DM) borrows heavily from several previous efforts in the reel world and animation, but what makes it stand out is how these fundamental elements blend well together in a story which manages to make you laugh, and also tug at your heart strings too.The protagonist looks a little like a fatter Anton from the Ratatouille show, and he is a villain who deep inside has a sorry childhood and just wants to impress his mother, and he meets 3 of the most adorable kids who turn him from competing to outdo Vector, the new kid on the evil block to a man who has a past and a heart. His efforts are assisted by an evil scientist, who acts as his surrogate father, and scores of the funniest assistants called Minions, who look like litt…

Ip Man 2 - Movie review‏

The trouble with sequels are that they need to live up to the original movie at least, otherwise it is seen as an effort to capitalise on the success of the first movie and milk some money.




Unfortunately Hong Kong knows when it sees a money train and glady hops on for the sequel and many more adaptions of it. See the proliferation of vampire movies in the 80s and now we see at least 3 Ip Man movies.



So now we have seen Ip Man defeat the Japs and move onto Hong Kong where the challenge comes from corrupt "Guai Lo" cops and the obligatory White Man beefcake who belittles Kungfu challenges Ip Man.



Well no one is too unhappy with the simple, tried and test plot, but no one is going to give anyone in this show a Golden Horse either.



Lets hope Donny Yen sticks to his word and stops here.... I cannot imagine who else Ip Man will challenge to milk more from this franchise..



Plot: 2.5/5



Now what we really want are fight scenes and I must say, its still a little disappointing. Now we…

Legion - movie review

There have been a few comic book based movies, which deal with the occult, and have a religious theme, Constantine comes to mind, but despite a promising idea, this movie is best remember for its references worthy sound than the plot.
So Michael who has appeared in his own movie with the same title (Michael starring John Travolta), now comes to Earth in a style akin to Terminator, in a bid to save mankind’s last hope from another apocalypse, and everything happens in a little diner in the middle of the Arizona desert.
Dennis Quaid, Paul Bettany and others try their best to save this movie from itself, but there is simply not enough meat in the story for these stalwarts to sink their teeth into. Paul Bettany buffs up for this role and he has had previous experience doing this in the Da Vinci Code, as a monk assasin.
Plot: 2/5
The plot may be wafer thin, but forget that and concentrate on the audio.
The action comes in spades, and the sound engineers in this movie were definitely paid more …

Blu Ray Shootout test Audio

This shootout was done on 22nd January, in a domestic premise with the aid of a few hobbyists, some newbies and a classically trained piano female teacher who has no audiophile aspirations.

Aim:

We wish to find out:


A Can we discern lossless vs lossy;

B Can we discern LPCM vs bistream;

C Can we discern using DAC (analogue) vs HDMI?

D  Compare the difference in analogue performance between the players

Introduction




The enjoyment of hi fidelity music as well as home theatre can be a rather subjective affair, with some favoring one brand over another with such fervor that their enthusiasm borders on the zealous.



I have been pondering the question of whether it all matters, lossless (in the form of bitstream signals or LCPM) and lossy and where the decoding is done since I joined Hi Def. most of the replies on the net are opinion based, with statements like “the signal is digital, therefore there is no difference!”. But such statements were seldom backed with real world tests and compar…

Oppo BDP 83 review - Nuforce Edition Blu Ray player (Region Free Modified Version)

Review of the Oppo BDP 83 Nuforce Edition Blu Ray player (Region Free Modified Version)
Introduction
Oppo has been doing things little different, giving joy to many audiophiles And Videophile alike with their offerings. They have been a leader in bringing high quality technology to the masses at a price which has been surprisingly competitive.
The new Oppo BD 83 has set the home theatre world alight with a performance for video and in audio that has been well reviewed worldwide.
Differences
The key feature of the Oppo players has been giant slaying performance with a highly competitive price. However Oppo machines are not for everyone. Simply put, if all you desire is a machine which can play BR discs, and you don’t have a big projector setup, then many of the Sony, Philips and other brand offerings are much cheaper and give better value.


What the Oppo BDP 83 does, is that it is an all-in-one machine which can play music well, in all its various formats, even SACD, and has a very impressi…

Definitely, Maybe

There have been a few classic romantic comedies which have impressed me over the years: 4 Weddings and a Funeral, Love Actually, Harry Met Sally, You Got Mail. The essential plot is about how the man, after a circuitous journey usually plus some time falling in love with others, eventually ends up with the woman of his dreams. After all these rom-coms should end well, and leave you with a warm fuzzy feeling, regardless of whether real life is like that. How about a rom-com which is funny, warm and yet reflective, and give you more than a topic or two to talk about when the show ends? Will it work if it goes off the tried and test formulae a little?So here is a movie, where from about the fifth minute you know the main actor, Ryan Reynolds, is divorced from the love of his life, and is on his way to pick up his precocious daughter who just had her first sex education lesson, and now knows she did not come from storks. The story is about how the daughter squeezes out the story of how he…