Upgrade to Samsung Galaxy S4

Super happy with my Galaxy S3 – so when the S4 came along with slightly bigger screen, faster and a few more goodies I had to go for it.

Certainly have not regretted that change.  Battery life still over an extended day.


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Upgrade Phone to Samsung Galaxy S3

Google upgraded the Nexus S operating system to Ice Cream Sandwich.  Result was that battery life plunged from 24hrs to only 8hrs – disastrous. Immediately triggered a search for a new phone.

Fortunately the Galaxy S3 was launched around that time. Its the most amazing and almost incredible phone I ever owned.  A real delight!

Battery life is between 36 and 48 hrs depending on usage.

Screen is great for emails, web, videos etc. Large size – but not too large. Really clear and bright.

Its very fast and responsive.  Video and audio play really well.  It has all the latest HiFi bluetooth standards etc.

Its loaded with innovative features (see the GS3 ads).

It probably going to be the most popular smartphone of 2013 so it will be really well supported with 3rd party gadgets and applications.

The Galaxy 4 will be a smooth upgrade when it arrives in 2013.

The only problem so far is that the phone is so slim and slippery it falls out of my pocket when sitting down. A solution has been to buy a thin rubber case which solved that problem.

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Adding a TUMI Ducatti back-pack to my travel gear

With the option of taking 2 bags on most long haul airlines, a “second bag” to use on short trips or alongside my Rimowa makes sense. The rimowa is no use for “convenient access”. Normally I use a Scott eVest to carry small stuff / passports etc. but that is not much good in hot weather.


(1) Fits inside Rimowa in case I need to travel Easyjet or Ryanair on any leg.
(2) Large enough for laptop and all other travel kit plus some clothes when travelling with it as my only bag.
(3) Tough and protective
(4) Low risk of street robbery (pickpocket)
(5) Place for water bottle
(6) Easy access when near feet in-flight.
(7) Wearable as backpack when cycling / walking / running!

I selected the Tumi Ducati Super Mono Compact Brief Pack

Really well made bag – lots f useful pockets and very light.  Will report back on progress after 6-12 months!

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STOP PRESS: Staying with Rimowa Salsa

After getting two Salsa Air cases for my daughters, as Xmas presents, I’m going to stay with my four year old Salsa (reviewed below).

Reasons: (1) The Salsa air, while lighter, has two zippable membranes that secure items in each of the halves – unfortunately this means that bulky items (for example my camera) can not easily fit in the case.  (2) 4 wheels vs 2. 4 wheels are great for wheeling down aircraft aisles and queues.  Unfortunately they cause your back to roll away on a hill, and are not so good when dragging a case down the rough sidewalks in Manhattan.

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UPDATE: Evaluating headphones – Dr Dre Beats Tour

The Bose Quiet Comfort 15 just are too bulky to carry, and a real hassle to sleep in.  I have therefore had a few trips with the Beats Tour headphones. http://www.beatsbydre.com/earphones/beats-tour/beats-beatstour,default,pd.html

They are small, comfortable and I got a set of refurbished ones on ebay for $9.99!!!!

The sound quality is great. I’ll report back when I have used them in anger!
If you don’t hear from me – I reverted to the Bose!

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Change Headphones from Bose QuietComfort 15

I currently carry a set of Bose Quiet Comfort 15 headphones.

They are good quality, comfortable to wear, and the noise cancelling is among the best I have tested.  They use AAA batteries, and have quite a thin cord.

There are three problems: (1) The size/bulk. They are the biggest thing in my travel kit – taking up more volume than even my laptop (assuming you keep them in their box). (2) They are hard to sleep in, if you want to lean your head sideways. (3) They have a wire.  Actually there is a (4) They need AAA batteries – ideally they would recharge from microUSB.

I am now looking for a replacement.  My previous headphones were Sony in-ear noise cancelling. These did not cancel so well, and were a bit uncomfortable in my ear canal.  However they were very small.  I am now looking around for some good Digital Noise Cancelling in-ear headphones and I will try them out.

Ideally I’d like a set with bluetooth connectivity (my phone and laptop have bluetooth, would need a dongle for airplane use) to avoid the hassle of a wire, and even better if they had a phone microphone…

These look interesting: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Sony-MDRNC300D-Digital-Cancelling-Headphones/dp/B002QUZ3NG – I’d give a SONY link but their UK site needs a log-in and the US URL seems to change!

Posted in Audio, Candidate for Upgrade, Uncategorized | Tagged | 3 Comments

Dealing with weather – Sunglasses and Umbrella

Sunny weather needs sunglasses – especially if you are driving.

I chose RayBan aviators with G10 grey tint. They have a low “side-bleed” and are optically excellent. I might have chosen polarization if i was in a high glare environment.

I swapped the RayBan case for an old Emporio Armani case with is tougher and much smaller – just big enough to hold the sunglasses.

Rainy weather needs a nice coat and hat, but an umbrella is highly desirable.

I chose a Fulton – Microslim – 2yrs ago.  Only 25mm in diameter and 220mm long when folded and about 180g in weight. I have only used it 3 times but it worked well all three times.

Having reviewed the web – I think the time is nigh to review this choice. There are some very small Knirps and Fulton Umbrellas just entering production. For example: http://www.umbrellaworld.co.uk/mens-umbrellas/fulton-tiny-microslim-black-p-919.html

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