Everdure Force BBQ – Review

We tend to be a pack of nerds here at the Cottage. So as a slight departure from the normal Video Games and Tech reviews, I have found myself reviewing, of all things, an Everdure Force Barbecue.

Going into this Covid-free Kiwi summer I needed to upgrade my old BBQ and wanted something better than ‘average’. So I looked into various top of the line brands like Webers, Broil Kings and the Everdures.

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XBOX SERIES S, Impressions

Oh the excitement! Oh the Hype! We are entering a new generation of Consoles and I have been lucky enough to have an Xbox Series S for the last couple of weeks to play with.

Richard has put the Big Brother Series X through its paces, so check out his impressions in that post.

But for now, here is my Review of the lil Xbox Series S.

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XBOX SERIES X, Impressions

I’ll come straight out with this, Microsoft and Xbox ANZ very kindly supplied us with an XBOX SERIES X in their review window. That means we’ve had it for about a week and a half. What follows are my thoughts after unboxing and those first steps with the next generation of gaming.

Don’t judge an Xbox Series X by its cover.

At least until you’ve read a bit.

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Fitbit: Inspire 2 – Review

The Fitbit Inspire 2 sits in the mid-level device slot of the 2020 Summer range, but it is by no means limited in features.

Back in May, I reviewed the Fitbit Charge 4 and found it a great tool to help in my training. Over the following months I have come to really rely on it for exercise goal setting and feedback.

The new range of Fitbits are dropping for summer,  so it seemed fitting for me to take some of the new devices for a test run…(yep, I meant that pun)

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JBL QUANTUM Wireless 600, review

JBL ANZ very kindly supplied us with a set of Wireless 600 headphones to celebrate their Australian launch last week. Over the course of this year they have made a big impact in New Zealand with their gaming range and we have been able to review some of the range previously.

Of course JBL are not only known for their Gaming Headsets, as part of the Harman Karman Group they are responsible for a range of lifestyle audio devices too. Some of which will be finding their way to Australasia soon.

The Wireless 600 is a set that is easy to put on, the packaged (braided) cables make it simple to swap out from PS4, to Mac, to Xbox to Switch. I am happy with it and will be making the most of them.

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The Fitbit Family just got three additions

The Fitbit Family has been something of a revelation in wearables over the last two years. Especially for those of us without Apple phones. Falling neatly into our Tech area we’ve had the opportunity to get Guy in a sweat with a couple of them. His recent feature on Active Zone Minutes (AZM) was well worth a look.

As a spectator of Fitbit in my family, I’ve been impressed. Now FitBit have launched three new models. No doubt after such an unprecedented year they’ll be on a lot of virtual Christmas Lists come December.

I haven’t worn a watch in decades. However there is enough tech squeezed into this series to make it damn sexy again!

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Epos Sennheiser GSX300 external sound card

For those older gamers reading this, you’ll remember vividly how it used to be commonplace to have a dedicated sound card in your PC: On-board audio encoding wasn’t a thing back in the days of beige boxes, shareware and 486CPUs.

As PCs became more and more modern, motherboards started appearing with in-built sound cards offering OK but often not stellar sound. Still, it was early days and you made the most of what you had. I still remember my Creative Labs Sound Blaster sound cards with fond memories.

Fast forward to today

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AZM on Fitbit – Min-Maxing your health stats IRL!

In May this year, I reviewed the new FitBit Charge 4 and the overall takeaway was that it’s an excellent fitness tracker, that for a ‘Gamer’ helped formalised my training regime and even gamified my day-to-day workouts. 

I admit, that at the time I didn’t fully appreciate what this wee device could do. Initially I set myself simple time goals for workouts to complete. Later I used the FitBit app to understand my workouts and in particular making the most of them by using the Active Zone Minutes (AZM) system.

To put it in ‘Gamer’ terms. My FitBit device and the AZM system has given me a tangible way to have stats to Min-Max, to get the best returns on my health and heart. It’s like dungeon crawling in real life!!

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ATARI VCS, Bluemouth confirmed as local distributor

The back end of the year and especially November is starting to look crowded. With Sony and Xbox still unconfirmed on launch dates or pricing for their new consoles, the rebooted ATARI VCS is coming in hot.

The big news for Australasia is that Bluemouth have been secured as the local distribution partner for the new “PC/Console Hybrid”. Effective from 14th August 2020, Bluemouth will bring their 17 years of experience to supply Australia and New Zealand.

With Sony and Microsoft still unconfirmed on dates and pricing, November 20th could go either way for the ATARI VCS. It might not have the system selling AAA games that the fans want, but there’s a big enough user base for people to want to try something different.

If the market positioning is right, you’d have to admit. “A third player has entered the game.”

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JBL Quantum 400 Headset – Review

JBL have been a mainstay of the home audio fraternity since 1946. They have in recent years been brought under the Samsung Electronics umbrella, which may explain why after so many years, they have finally taken the leap into Gaming Headsets see what we think of the Quantum 400.

They have certainly jumped in boots and all too. The new ‘Quantum’ range boasts seven different models. Spanning entry level headsets through to models with head-tracking, noise cancellation and wireless surround sound.

The JBL Quantum 400s are a great headset. If the rest of the Quantum range have had this much thought put into them, then safe to say JBL are not here to muck about, Gamers!

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