Monday 30 March 2015

The 65" Hisense 4K UHD LED Display in pictures.

Yes, I bought one of these (A Hisense LTDN65K680M3D just to be clear) from Amazon and took some pictures. So here they are to give you some idea as to what to expect if you buy one. At the offer price it was quite good value (under £900 if you must know). However for standard definition playback, not pictured here, it's actually quite bad. Only 720p or greater will look any good on this display. All photos were taken with my Canon G9 camera. Oh, and to get it going with my PC at 4k UHD, had to try a number of HDMI cables. Oddly some of the 1m ones wouldn't work, but one of the 10m ones did. All are non branded cables, and yes I consider Monster cables to be a waste of money. Offended? Post abuse below as you see fit.

Skyrim in 4k UHD, looks and runs great (MSI R9 290)

30Hz hardly appeared to matter

Close up, very detailed, nice.

The icons in the middle lie on the right of my 5.3 WQXGA (2560x1600) monitor.
Another pic.

HD TV from a BT (Humax) Youview box, no I'm not a DPRK fan, it was just on at the time.
This picture is one of particular interest, look at the sky, it should be even, but it isn't it seems to have dark patches. I looked into this, and it's a common LED problem apparently, due to the way in which they are illuminated. Oddly enough spending more not only fails to solve the problem in most cases, but some more expensive LED displays have an even more pronounced problem.

Now the 1080p Zotac ID-41 media player running Kodi

Taken with the camera flash on.
I took this just so that I knew where the ports were, and was too lazy to look at the user guide.
That tear in the box (bottom left) was worrying, fortunately not an issue as the display inside was fine.

Wednesday 18 March 2015

The Razer Chroma, the final keyboard?

Had the most surreal BT experience, whereby a number of calls and e-mails are exchanged, and the matter of cancelling my BT TV Essentials is meant to have completed. Only I receive a bill a few days later, and I’d been charged in full for the following month. It’s as if the entire episode simply never happened. Surreal.

Keyboards, well I did it, I ordered a Razer Chroma, and the process of buying it, well that’s another story. As for the keyboard, well, it works well, but with one tiny niggle. Again the difference between Razer (Kalih) switched and Cherry switches is noticeable, even lay people I’ve had press a few keys can tell. This time it's Razer Green vs Cherry Blue. Here’s the thing, the Razer have a squidgy activation click, the Cherry have a much more crisp click when depressed. As for the activation force required to register a key press being reduced, I’m not that sure that’s desirable, well it’s not noticeable, does it cause more typos? I just can’t be 100% sure, but it appears not to. However I was so convinced that the click requires more force, that I used some coins to test the claim. Sure enough the Razer Greens do need less force, but that squidgy feel appears to take that away, and gives me the psychological impression that I am using more force, even though I do not appear to be. Confused? Well I remain so.

On the lighting front, it’s just amazing, the things you can do, ripple parts of the keyboard, have other parts cycling colours etc. It’s just brilliant, to the point that I have almost accepted the Blue/Green switch difference. The colours are nothing like the washed out Corsair ones. The only downside is that they no longer dim well, I pretty much need them at maximum brightness to match the old Razer green backlight at mid-level. Doesn’t bother me, apart from the inter key light bleed now being more pronounced. One last very minor issue. The Caps/scroll lock/Num lock LEDs, they’re so dull, even at maximum brightness, that they may as well not be there. But I never look at them, so no biggie. The media keys are still FN shifted, so no new keys, disappointing. Obviously I went nuts and coloured the keyboard silly, with the keys right of the enter key set to cycle through colours, it was too distracting to have the main typing area cycle in the same way.

Deep rich colours here, the photo doesn't do them justice.

As for the Corsair RGB Cherry Blue, I left that on order at Amazon, some three months ago, after three date changes, in the first week of February, it no longer had a delivery date at all. Finally they cancelled the order altogether. I checked on-line and discovered that they have a problem making switches that have a consistent feel, with some users returning theirs as they felt that some keys were stiffer than others. Rather cheekily Corsair suggested that the market for Blue switch based keyboards is minimal, because apparently they largely sells Red switch based keyboards! They might want to tell Razer who for years have only ever sold Blue switched keyboards, and now its green switched variant. Of course Razer could fold tomorrow and I’d look gift horse in the mouth, but isn’t it meant to be about giving the user/customer what they want? Even Razer decided to start selling softer switch for those who just don’t like the Blue and Green switch's actuation click.

On a final note, I have to admit, my keyboards' lighting does make me a little more cheerful when I come to use my PC, it does make a psychological difference, it’s just nice to look at. Sounds petty, but it’s true. Some may assume that I lead a sad life that is brightened by a gaudy coloured keyboard, but nothing would be further from the reality of how I live, the main issue is that I use my PC for work too, and my ‘work’ has troughs and peaks, as does most work.

Oh the BT problem, they actually fixed it, a relief.