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55 years of Manufacturing Excellence

This new Tokina lens is the first in a new generation of full frame (FX) lenses designed for professional digital SLR cameras like the Canon EOS 5D Mark II and the Nikon D700 and D3x. The 16-28 zoom range gives the professional photographer a super-wide angle of view to get close to subject for dramatic effect or to take in entire scenes

Zoomed. Not Shaken

Vibration Compensation Mechanism Try the VC simulator at

Tamron 18-270mm Zoom has incredible 15X wide-to-super-tele coverage plus advanced VC anti-shake! A triumph of advanced optical engineering, the Tamron AF 18-270mm Di II VC is the first 15X (28-419mm-equivalent) zoom lens for consumer digital SLRs with advanced Vibration Compensation (VC).

New eyes for industry

Give your professional creativity the space it deserves without making any compromises! • Large 24” (61 cm) widescreen display provides a perfect workspace for creating digital content • Superior display fidelity with full HD resolution (1,920 x 1,200) and high colour gamut (92% Adobe RGB) to bring your creative ideas to life • Supports HtDCP protocol to view copy protected materials e.g. Blu-Ray videos • Impressive industrial design with flat drawing surface and unique display stand • Display transits between low/flat and upright/angled with the assisted lifts and intuitive breaks • Enables unique off table edge positioning • Work directly with the pen on screen with intuitive hand-eye coordination • 2,048 levels of pressure sensitivity and Wacom Tip Sensor produce a precise and detailed reflection of your ideas

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Hello 2013




Hatim al Taie Managing Director

Abdullah al Taie General Manager

Rathish Ramachandran Content Head

Consumer Electronics Show (CES) is by far the most awaited technology show. Thousands of companies roll out products; lights blink, cameras flash and products make it or break it. CES 2012 was all about the Lumia 900, one of the most innovative smartphones we saw last year. It was Window’s flagship just as much as it was NokiaÕs. It makes us wonder what really matters at CES; hardware or software. It is only imperative that software and hardware go hand-in-hand and stressing on either one of the two, dents the other. The 900 ran the Windows 7.5 and was obsolete in just five months with the launch of Windows 8. Yes, fast processors, pixel density and transmission density are important, but the bottom line is software. WeÕd rather know what the best OS in town is or what app is a rage in the Apple Store. Though CES is the temple of hardware, we hope in the years to come, it becomes more about products built to upgrade. We bring in 2013 with an array of good gadgets. We review the next generation iMac, a refreshing pro-efficiency machine, the miniature Samsung S III and a refreshing take on the traditional Honda CB1100. Our cover story features a range of audio systems that you will find interesting. The gamers are in for treat with our special feature of gaming consoles and games recommended on them. Pocket gamers too can choose from a collection of apps specific to games. We list out the reasons you should get your hands on the Samsung Galaxy camera and Oman’s first electronics portal for Panasonic. Finally, a synopsis of Gangster Squad directed by Ruben Fleischer starring heartthrob Ryan Gosling and bad guy Sean Penn.

Deepali Kumar Content

Julina Selwin Head - Design

Shyniben Koyakkil Senior Designer

Manu Martin Sales

Vibha Ashar Leticia Meneses

- Ed Produced by

Deenar Press and Publishing LLC

PO Box 139, PC 102, Al Qurm, Sultanate of Oman Tel: + 968 24696868, Fax: +968 24693569 E-mail:


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2012 © All rights reserved. This publication may not be reproduced or transmitted in any form in whole or in part without the written permission of the publishers; while every care has been taken in the preparation of the magazine, the publishers cannot be held responsible if factual errors in product and pricing occur. MSRP (Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price) listed only as a suggestion. Actual prices are set by dealers and are subject to change at any time. The publishers regret they cannot accept liability for errors or omissions contained in this issue. Please check any quoted hardware specifications and pricing with your supplier before purchase.


19 WEARABLE TECH Bracelet guaranteed to improve your health and lifestyle

20 MOBILE ZONE Get an insight of what the S III has to offer HTC has a lot on its plate with the One X

34 COMPUTING Big bite of the apple Toshiba unleashes the All-in One desktop PC

38 PHOTOGRAPHY EOS 1D C - A cinematographer’s dream Samsung Galaxy Camera – the Android camera is here


An array of music systems that will add sound to your life



Journey as Jason through the pirate infested island, where each move you make can decide his fate


Feel the power of modern biking with traditional looks- CB1100 Relish speed and power with the 911 GT


Blancpain creates a stunning work of art for true collectors

54 MOVIE ZONE Gangster Squad synopsis


Get the best of the Consumer Electronics Show




A glance at gamers favourite console and best-selling games



If you have any queries, mail us on, and we will try to answer them in our next issue

Dear Tech team, We recently installed a photoelectric smoke detector in our factory, could you tell us exactly how it works and also if it is better than ionization smoke detectors? Niyaz Dear Niyaz, Photoelectric smoke detectors are more responsive to fires that begin with a long period of smoldering (called smoldering fires). They aim a beam light source into a sensing chamber at an angle away from the sensor so that no light can reach the lens. When the smoke enters the chamber, reflecting light on the light sensor it triggers the alarm. Ionization smoke alarms are generally more effective at detecting flaming fires which spread rapidly. The sources of these fires usually are paper burning or grease fires on a stove. Whereas photoelectric smoke alarms detect smoldering fires, which burn for hours before bursting into flames. The sources of such fire include cigarette smoldering couches or bedding. Mostly we recommend having both types of smoke detectors in such a fragile environment. -Ed Dear Editor, I was comparing the features of the Lumia phones and one of the display features for the Lumia 920 and 820 is the RGB Stripe. What makes this so special compared to the 800 that doesnÕt have this feature? Sharon Dear Sharon, RGB (red, green and blue), refers to the pixel layout on the screen. Subpixel rendering is a way to increase the resolution of a computers LCD or OLED display. On a RGB stripe display the red, green and blue pixels are the same size and have the same count. In comparison an RGBG uses green pixels, as the human eye is more sensitive to green, so the screen ends up having fewer pixels than a RGB strip. The RGB stripe layout gives more vibrant colours and sharper images when compared to a PenTile display. The Lumia 800 has a PenTile display and some fonts may look less crisp. -Ed

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Dear Editor, What are EPUB files and how could you view them? Namita Dear Namita, EPUB is a free, standardized format that almost every hardware eReader or desktop software understands. AmazonÕs Kindle, however cannot read EPUB texts without using some intermediary software that converts these books into a format the Kindle can understand. To read EPUB ebooks on PC, Mac, iPod touch and iPhone you could use Adobe Digital Editions, FB Reader, Openberg, Bookworm and Calibre are some of the software that you could use to view the files. Windows can use Adobe Digital Editions for EPUB format. -Ed

Dear TECH team, Could you tell me whether the apps are identical between a 9.7 inch iPad and the iPad Mini? Nash Dear Nash, The iPad mini runs its apps at the same resolution as the full-sized iPad 2. The only difference is the screen size where the iPad 2 has a 9.7-inch screen whereas the iPad MiniÕ s screen is only 7.9-inches. Though it might appear smaller, functionally wise, it is no different. -Ed ERRATUM TECH Issue 32, December, page 42 had an incorrect price of the LG 84inch Ultra HD TV at RO799 mentioned. The correct price is RO7999. The error is regretted.

TECH RADAR The rumour mill has churned up some pretty interesting gadgets OPTIMUS G2

Rumour has it that LG’s next flagship will be a 5.5-inch 1080p screen as well as other highend specs like Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Prime quad-core processor clocked at 2GHz. It also has LTE connectivity support and is sure to have a camera of atleast 13MP or more since the current generation Optimus G is already offering 13MP. Rumour has it that the Android version powering the next LG flagship will be 5.0 Key Lime Pie. Many reports say that the Korean phone would have similar specs to that of the HTC Butterfly.The G2 is supposedly to hit the markets towards the third quarter of 2013.

PLAYSTATION 4 Sony’s next generation Xbox console will be giving gamers something to look forward to under the Christmas tree in 2013.the ruours surrounding the console suggest thet Sony is calling the PS4 as ‘Orbis’. It is also said that it comes between 8GB and 16Gb of RAM, 256GB of storage and a Blu-ray drive. The rumours state that Sony is attempting to get 4K gaming along with full HD 1080p 3D gaming for the first time. Though the final specs of the console is yet to be confirmed, sources indicates that the console would be powered by AMD’s A10 APU.

CHROMEBOOK The first touch touchscreen Chromebook is said to hit the shelves during the first quarter of 2013. The laptop would feature a 12.85-inch screen and will use use optical lamination technology to bond the screen’s touch sensor and glass cover into a single thin layer.

The touchscreen trend has been brewing thanks to the Apple iPads and the Microsoft Surface and Google is in line to capitalise the laptoptouchscreen hybrid. Though Google had many regular laptops before, the Chromebook would be a stepping stone into the touchscreen world.

SAMSUNG GALAXY NOTE 3 Samsung is rumoured to bring out the successor of the popular Galaxy Note 2. The phablet is said come out in a massive 6.3-inch OLED screen compared to the 5.5-inch display. Though there is no word on the processing power, android version or megapixels, Note 3 display is said to have a 1080p resolution. Apparently, Samsung’s courage to fit a 6.3-inch

dispay on the Galaxy Note 3 is based on the impressive sales figure reported for Galaxy Note 2 pointing out that Android enthusiasts are willing to spend their money on smartphones with huge displays.

YOTAPHONE Dual screen phone becomes reality as Yota devices preapares to launch its YotaPhone. The Russian phone maker is indeed new to the market and is all ready to capture the handset industry. Thanks to a 4.3-inch LCD careen that is backed with 200ppi E Ink rear display the phone will be Ereaders favourite choice. The phone has a 1.5GHz Snapdragon S4 processor with 2GB of RAM. The dual screen is said to launch in the first quarter of 2013.




Google has announced that Asus will be unveiling a Google TV product at CES 2013, rumored to be the Qube set-top box.Asus is traditionally known as a PC manufacturer but will join other new partners Hisense and TCL by releasing Google TV products in 2013. Google says existing partners LG, Vizio and Sony will also have products at the show. LG has already detailed the Google TV products it will show in the GA7900 and GA6400 televisions which will feature 3D and an updated Google TV interface.Google says there are many more apps on the way, with the newest being Amazon Instant released late 2012. The premium compact digital camera, the XF1 and X10, by Fujifilm corporation has been commended in the iF product Design category of the iF Design Awards 2013. The XF1 features F1.8 FUJINON 4x manual zoom lens operated simply by twisting the zoom ring and 2/3inch EXR-CMOS. Meticulous attention to ease-of-use and the best choice of materials has resulted in a stylish, highend design for the XF1. The aluminium body is both light and durable, while a synthetic leather covering reproduces the feel of genuine leather and ensures an improved grip. The XF1 comes in a

choice of three appealing colours like black, red and brown. The X10 boasts a large 2/3 EXR CMOS sensor and a high-definition F2.0 wideangle and F2.8 telephoto FUJINON 4x manual zoom lens that is characterised by its brightness and superb picture quality right up to the edge of the image. Featuring a bright optical zoom viewfinder with a wide viewing angle, the X10 allows users to enjoy the pleasure of photography via a traditional viewfinder, providing all the benefits and ease of composition that this brings.


UBUNTU FOR SMARTPHONES Ubuntu, the most popular desktop linux distro,is now on mobile OS as well. Ubuntu is compatible with the typical android board support package which provides engineering, online and professional services to Ubuntu customers. Users of devices running Ubuntu for Smartphones will be able to use thumb gestures from all four edges of a device’s screen to find content and switch between apps. Content search and app switching will be faster than on other mobile OS. “The user experience is the key,” Ramon T. Llamas, research manager mobile phones at IDC,

12 / TECH

told LinuxInsider. Second, “and I don’t think it’s quite there yet, is having all these applications coming to you. HTML5 is one of the lures of Ubuntu but it may not be the full-blown experience developers may hope for, and, at the end of the day, the user wants apps.” Developers can use Ubuntu’s software development kit to create native apps or lightweight HTML5 apps that will run on desktop PCs as well as smartphones.

Huawei chairman of devices Richard Yu took the opportunity to show of the campany’s latest handset, the 6.1-inch Ascend Mate, to fans at a brand store in China. The new smartphone has a full HD resolution of 1920x1080 pixels. Other specifications include third generation K3V3 quad core processor clocked at 1.8GHz, 2GB of RAM and Android 4.1 Jelly Bean plus a huge 4000 mAh battery. It is also said to be packing a 13MP camera. All the specs would put the Ascend mate on top of the phablet tree. Huawei is said to officially unveil the device at CES, Las Vegas.

POOL CLEANING ROBOT CES will have a lot to offer this month and one new gadget that will certainly be a head-turner would be iRobot’s Mirra 530 pool-cleaning robot and Looj 330 gutter-cleaning robot. The former deep cleans any type of in-ground pool, both the surface and the water. iRobot has engineered the machine to remove all the gunk from your pool, including leaves, hair and dirt. To


LG announced seven new Google TV that they will be showing off with five different screen sizes, small bezels and tons of options. In 2013 we could expect LG’s new Google TVs to be available in 42, 47, 50, 50, 55 and 60-inch models. Though the Korean maker has not disclosed pricing or availability, they will show off the Google TV powered sets in January at CES 2013. The TV will come with a newly designed Magic Remote. The device will feature a full keyboard and natural language commands for actions such as changing the channels or searching for entertainment. Just like the previous versions of Magic Remote, the device includes motion control. Some of the other features of the upcoming sets include 3D and built-in OnLive Gaming.

top it, the machine also tackles things one can’t see like algae, pollen and bacteria. The robot can automatically figure out the pool size and determine which cleaning progamme is more efficient. The pool cleaning robot can go through up to 70 gallons of per minute and filter out all the debris that makes its way through.

Supertooth to unravel Bluetooth speakers

SuperTooth has announced a pair of Bluetooth speakers. The modles include the Disco Twin and the HD-Voice with former being a pair of speakers and the latter being an in-car hands-fee model. Both models are set to debut during CES 2013. In addition to these two products, the company will also have their other products including recently announced Melody headphones, Disco 2 and Disco hands-free car kits. The Disco twin, a set of right and left speakers, should be able t offer up to three to four hours of non-stop music playback or up to 10 hours of moderately played tunes. The HD-voice is designed for in-car use and will bring features to include the ability to announce callers in 12 languages as well as announce the battery level, connection stats and GPS instructions. The HDVoice will have a pair of speakers microphone for better sound handling.

Nokia-RIM patent deal to lift finances

BlackBerry maker Research in Motion (RIM) paid rival Nokia 50 million euros (USD65.8 million) to settle a patent dispute.Analysts believe RIM will also have to pay the Finnish company a licence fee of between USD2 and USD5 for each handset sold using Nokia technology. Last month, Nokia withdrew all its lawsuits against RIM after reaching an agreement on patents relating to WLAN local area network technology, but said the terms

of the deal were confidential. Though terms and agreements are confidential, Nokia said it included a one-time payment to be booked in the fourth-quarter, as well as ongoing fees, all to be paid to RIM. “This agreement demonstrates Nokia’s industry leading patent portfolio and enables us to focus on further licensing opportunities in the mobile communications market,” said Paul Melin, Nokia’s chief intellectual property officer.

JANUARY 2013 / 13

CANON INTRODUCES Polaroid’s first X MARK I PRESENTER Android camera By combining Canon’s stylish, classic design and environmental credentials, the X MARK I Presenter ogffers a business executive a versatile, multi-function calculator which also acts as a wireless presenter, pointer and timer. The four-in-one device that solves mathematical equations and serves as red laser pointer, timer and remote control for presentations is not only easy to carry but a perfect choice for business

travelers. The clear LCD screen displays up to eight digits, while Memory Store and recall functions enable users to both record and recall essential information as required. Keeping track of time is also easy, as the count-down and count up timer clearly indicates how nuch time the presenter has left whereas the overrun facility identifies when the presenter has exceeded their allocated time.

The Midnight Developer Challenge

Nokia and Microsoft are challenging university students in the Middle East and Africa to come up with the next big mobile app idea through ‘The Midnight Developer Challenge’, its first and the region’s biggest ever student app development competition. With hundreds of students from over 25 countries participating, the competition is aimed at providing students with exposure and training in the latest mobile and app development technologies. “It’s a fantastic opportunity for students to get real life experience in designing, developing and

distributing a mobile app for consumers in an emerging app economy,” said Joe Devassy, Head of Developer Experience, Nokia IMEA. The contest is divided into two categories - Apps and Games. Each category will have a winner and a runners-up prize. The winning team will walk away with US $10,000, a trip to a Nokia Global event, plus an XBOX and Lumia 920 for each team member. The runner-up team will receive US $5,000, an XBOX and a Lumia 920 for each team member.

Zynga shuts down 13 games

Zynga said it would shut down 13 underperforming titles after warning that its revenues were slowing as gamers fled from its once-popular titles published on the Facebook platform in large numbers and sharply revised its full-year outlook. The San Francisco-based company announced the ‘Petville’ shutdown two weeks ago on its Facebook page. All the 11 shutdowns occurred in December. The 11 titles shut

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down or closed to new players include role-playing game ‘Mafia Wars 2,’ ‘Vampire Wars,’ ‘ForestVille’ and ‘FishVille.’ Zynga has said it is shifting focus to capture growth in mobile games. Zynga is hoping that a lucrative real-money market could make up for declining revenue from games like ‘FarmVille’ and other fading titles that still generate the bulk of its sales.

Polaroid will be launching a compact camera system that runs on Android at the CES. The device will be the first Androidbased camera to boast interchangeable lenses. Scott Hardy, president and CEO of Polaroid told Imaging Resource. “There will be an Android powered, interchangeable lens camera introduced by Polaroid at CES 2013. Additional information and specs will be released during the show.” The launch at CES will be Polaroid’s second Android camera. The same event last year witnessed Polaroid revealed the SC1630 point-andshoot camera. Though Hardy did not reveal any specs or official name for the device, the speculation suggests that it will be running on Android Jelly Bean and will have


Lurking rumours suggested that the eagerly awaited Samsung S4 was to arrive in the first quarter of 2013. The Korean firm bursts our bubble saying that the handset will not launch until May. In a post on its Facebook page, the Samsung Lebanon confirmed that no such date has been revealed. The response was in regards to a question from a user asking specifically about the Galaxy S4 release date. The handset would be a no show at the CES and could even skip the Mobile World Congress in February as well.




With great introductory offers ePlus is the first online electronics portal in Oman


anasonic has launched ePlus, making them the first company in the electronics arena to start an online site for the customers in Oman. The shoppers can log on to the ePlus website and register themselves following simple steps. The site provides some great introductory offers to the registered shoppers. The portal serves as a one-stop-destination to all customers interested in buying from a wide array of Panasonic goods. The site enables customers to purchase products from their office or within the comfort of their homes. A key highlight of this online shopping facility is an extended one year warranty on all purchases. Focusing on promoting and complementing activities towards the ‘Eco Ideas Declaration’ the idea behind ePlus is to promote innovative paperless shopping. Panasonic is using Eco

Ideas for lifestyles that aim to reduce the impact of its operations on the environment. The customers who register on the site automatically become Panasonic exclusive ‘Plus card’ loyalty members and can take advantage of the fantastic deals on their products. Consumers gain ‘plus’ points on every purchase at ePlus and these points could be redeemed for future purchases of any Panasonic product including digital AV, cameras and camcorders, home appliances, personal care, accessories and system solution products. With the Sultanate becoming one of the most important destinations in the Middle East to attract foreign investments, online shopping trend is growing fast in Oman and Panasonic along with OMASCO aims to provide shoppers with convenience ofw shopping from anywhere and anytime.

JANUARY 2013 / 15


GIZMO MANIA Some gadgets that are a perfect hybrid of cool and crazy

A-MUSE-MENT Imagine using just your brainwaves to control the devices around you, for instance to shut the TV when you are tired and sleepy. A headband called Muse displays your brain’s activities directly onto your smartphone or tablet and is compatible with both iOS and Android devices. InteraXon, a

Toronto-based group behind the Muse says it plans to use this technology to eventually sync with other devices. This comfortable, sleek, four-sensor headband helps improve memory, reduce stress and improve concentration by sending brainwaves to your device showing how well your brain performs.

HELMET SPEAKER The POC Receptor Bug Communication Helmet is a perfect solution if you are tired of plugging in earphones that keeps falling off every time you wear your helmet. The helmet does not support just any brand, it has Beats by Dr. Dre built into the neck roll. The helmet also includes other features such as in-line remote and mic, ventilated double-shell construction and an EPS liner. Unlike the headphones, this is only available in black or white.

GLASS EYEZ MPRINTER The all new mPrinter is the answer to all who think that printing is all about bulky machines. This tiny printer is a small portable thermal printer that prints snippets of information called mPrints. The printers are available in two types, USB-only and WiFi enabled. All models of the mPrinter have a builtin charging facility and also a battery compartment. This device is being backed by and over 300 other backers to support it. This wireless thermal printer is indeed be a breakthrough in the printer industry. 16 / TECH

For all the live streamers, if you have ever been tired of holding up a camera all day or wear a ridiculous WiFi enabled video helmet, the wait is finally over. ZionEyez Video Recording Glasses is a set of 720p embedded-camera eyeglasses called Eyez that houses a tiny camera to the left of the standardsize eyeglass lens. Also containing a processor, Bluetooth and WiFi module this eye piece can instantly transfer the stream to your Android or iPhone device for uploading. As a bonus, the glass also comes with clear and shaded removable lenses, so that it could be used in the night as well as during the day without looking suspicious.

SMART HOMES SmartThings is a perfect way to link your entire house to your iPhone. This new system helps you to receive notifications from a variety of devices. For those who worry about whether they have locked the door behind them or if they have shut the front door, this device notifies you from wherever you are. The secret of this device is the software rather than the hardware. The SmartThings system is based on a collection of apps that cater to various needs. For example the ‘My Stuff is Secure’ app monitors a sensor on a cabinet or drawer that contains valuables and will notify the owner when it is opened. This is a perfect device for those who want to feel secure about their homes when they are away.

SNEAKER SPEAKER Portable speakers have come a long way since their invention. Sneaker Speaker is a portable, wireless speaker you can strap over any pair of shoes and hit the streets. Developed by New York studio, Ray Kingston Inc., these battery powered speakers are held in place on your foot by using either one or two straps that can b placed around the ankle. It also features two headphone-like bands that hold it in place on top of the shoe. The Bluetooth enabled speakers can be also paired with smartphones and iPads to access music libraries and playlists.



With time, people have forgotten traditional wristwatches in favour of cell phones. If you need a reason to go old-school again and yet keep your phone close, get your hands on the G-Shock bluetooth low energy smart watch. This time piece with Bluetooth 4.0 syncs with your iPhone to deliver emails and phone call alerts. The Casio G-Shock GB6900AA also includes notifications for basics like calendar alerts, weather and stock. These vibrating notifications can even be silenced by simply double-tapping the watch’s screen. Its built-in system also notifies you when the phone is out of range.

Tokyoflash has brought out a cool new watch once again, Kisai Spider LCD watches. As always their design is slick and has a twist when it comes to reading time. Though at first, time reading seems complicated, but once you know the trick behind it, it is pretty fun and easy. The new format has four hexagonal rings to present time. Available in black or silver stainless steel with black, green, blue or red transparent LCD display the watch costs RO72 (USD179). Inspired by the concentric rings of a spider’s web, this timepiece surely makes you feel like teleported into the future JANUARY 2013 / 17


HAUTE MASTERPIECE Greubel Forsey’s T24 Contemporain is a watch worth showing off

Case material: 18ct white gold Case thickness: 9.08mm Case diameter: 38.00mm Between horns: 20.00mm Water resistance: 30m


or years, watchmakers have been carefully cutting and engraving movement parts in watches. Open or Skeleton-working endows a watch with depth and a certain aesthetic dimension. Blancpain pays tribute to a long line of haute watched with a unique, highly technical and aesthetically accomplished timepiece. Skeleton watches are a popular collectible and the Blancpain‘s Squelette 8 Jours, from the brand’s elegant Villeret collection, offers one of the most intricately designed and executed open-worked movements in the market. The movement, on display through the front and back sapphire crystal is a manual-wind Calibre 1333SQ, which is equipped with a titanium balance, a Breguet balance spring and three series-coupled barrels that provide the timepiece an impressive eight-day (‘8 Jours’ in French) power reserve. The movement is entirely skeletonised and intricately decorated with chamfering and engraving. The challenge for a watchmaker whilst skeletonising a watch movement is achieving the perfect balance between its aesthetic and operability. In the case of Blancpain’s Calibre 1333SQ, the watchmakers trimmed the movement down to its extremely slender shape making it just 4.2mm despite its 157 parts. The extreme difficulty of the process is evident in the many arched shapes with interior angles. The finishing touches are added by an engraver, who adds a traditional ‘scrolling’ motif to the bridges and main plate, which accentuates the rounded curves of the barrels and case. Even its most delicate parts are intricately engraved by hand. Blancpain‘s Squelette 8 Jours comes in a white-gold case, 38mm in diameter and water-resistant to 30 metres. The strap is made of Mississippi alligator leather and is priced at USD65,000 (RO25026). Watches occupy a predominant place in every person’s life and more so for the watch connoisseurs. They have a keen eye for brands and would go to any extent to get the most coveted of brands as well.

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PRO-HEALTH WRISTBAND Jawbone UP is a neat wristband complemented with a gorgeous iOS app


he Jawbone UP is one of the better looking fitness bands available in comparison with Fitbit One and Nike+ FuelBand. It is a nexus of the durability of a watch and the design of a bracelet. The relatively thin and flexible bracelet comes in three sizes and eight pastel shades namely onyx, mint green, light grey, blue, navy blue, red, orange, and hunter green. An embossed zigzag extends the length of the wrap-around band, which is made of medical-grade, hypoallergenic TPU rubber. It is possible for you to wear it at all times, even in the shower. However, this product hasn’t received the full splash test from reviewers yet. While unpacking your wristband, you will find a USB charging cable and the band with lithium-ion polymer battery that lasts about 10 days on a single charge. The part we loved about UP is that literally everything is available on the free, graphically fluid, iOS app. The app is very interactive as well as user-friendly.

It shows you how many miles walked, calories burned, charts your sleeping patterns, logged moods a summary of what you’ve eaten. Wait, there is a lot more. You can set a silent alarm that vibrates up to 30 minutes ahead of your wake up time and also spots an ideal moment for you to get up based on your REM cycles. Its power nap switch when activated looks at your sleep habits to determine whether your best nap would be a 27-minute rest, a 45-minute siesta or something in between and according sets an appropriate alarm. Overall, this product is very impressive, but the Fibit with its jaw dropping features weighs it down. The device could’ve been a lot more popular if it hit the Android market as well. But if you have an iOS device and don’t mind not being able to see your data right on the device, it is a great option. The Jawbone UP is available online at USD130 (RO50).

JANUARY 2013 / 19



SUCCESSOR HTC adds a new member to the One X family


he HTC One X saga continues with its revamped version, HTC One X+. The handset comes with 64GB storage, a better processor and Android 4.1 Jelly Bean out of the box. The one X + upgrades the already impressive predecessor with a 1.7GHz quadcore Tegra 3 processor. The 4.7-inch screen has super-wide viewing angles, vibrant colours and one of the best displays.

PROS The super LCD touchscreen is protected with Gorilla Glass 2 display. The rubberised paint body is a welcomed change unlike the predecessor’s polycarbonate one and not to mention the 32G internal storage increased

to 64GB. While the rear camera remains the same with 8MP, the front facing camera has been improved to 1.6MP. HTC managed to beef up the insides while maintain the phones physical features. The battery too grows from 1,800mAh to 2,100mAh. There is also some new audio circuitry to improve the speaker’s sound quality. The voice search is quite powerful as it can handle speech recognition even offline, making it very fast.

CONS X+ has a decent battery life for regular use or on standby, but during multi-tasking or while gaming the phone heats up and the battery drains faster. Another major

drawback is that there is no access to the 2,100mAh battery it carries. The phone does not have a microSD card slot. For those who would like more storage this is a major set back.

VERDICT The HTC One X+ is a stunning Android phone and beats its competitors in many ways, be it the performance, processor, design or even the screen. It has everything its predecessor has and more. Though the battery does seem as efficient, Android patriots would surely love this beautiful make. One X+ is guaranteed to a make huge impression by continuing with the strengths of the One X and its added features.

Display 4.7-inch, LCD 2 with Gorilla Glass 2 protection Camera Rear 8MP, front facing 1.6MP, LED flash Memory Internal 1GB, External 64GB 8.9mm

Resolution 720x1,280 pixels Bluetooth v4.0 with A2DP 134.36mm

Weight 135g


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SMALL WONDER Designed similarly to the S III, the Mini has a lot to offer and more


Weight: 111.5g Screen: 4-inche, Super AMOLED Memory: External-up to 32GB, Internal- 8 and 16GB Camera: 5MP


Bluetooth: v4.0

Price: RO147 63mm


amsung has packed the Android 4.1 Jelly Bean within a smaller bundle as compared to the S III that made it to our Best Products of 2012. The S III has now been joined by the S III Mini that sure has a lot to live up to. Going big on innovation, the Mini is an impressive piece sporting a dazzling display and enough power under its hood. We think that the Korean electronic giant’s idea was to pack everything good about the S III into something more compact.

DESIGN The build, look and feel of this 115g phone is almost like the S III, only smaller. It comes in the same pebble blue and

marble white variants that the Samsung S III was launched with. The Mini at 122.55x63x9.9mm sits comfortably in the hand and its 4-inch, Super AMOLED display is pretty decent. The phone comes with 8GB storage and it also has an expandable microSD slot. Despite being scaled it can be quite refreshing to look at an compared to the bigger phone available in the market.

SOFTWARE While other android manufacturers were still launching mobiles that run on Ice Cream Sandwich, S III mini was released with Jelly Bean. The jelly Bean interface runs at a consistent 60fps, making everything much smoother. Samsung has also added a special power-saving mode to

the menu that lets the phone throttle back its CPU and reduce screen brightness when the battery is running out of juice.

OVERALL Though the S III Mini carries only a 5MP camera, it produces decent shots in good lighting conditions without too much noise. Sadly the camera does not have full HD but the 720p video recording does not a pretty decent job. The Mini brother is Samsung’s way of providing the best S III experience to users who are on a budget. With its faithful Super AMOLED display, familiar design, Jelly Bean features and decent camera, the S III Mini is the perfect phone for Android lovers who are not keen on massive screen size.

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SONIC SENSATION The latest and the most upbeat audio systems we recommend

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Music is a refuge, an escape from the harsh realities of the world. Whether it’s a set of earphones that you drown yourself into or pumping loud music at a party, it is a way of expression. With just about every device from cell phones to portable media player these days, most people have forgotten the good old times of huddling around a radio listening to shows on their favourite station. But as time elapses, music systems too have had breakthroughs. Sound machine of the present has evolved into something premium delivering a music that is so clear and crisp. We take you through an array of products that are meant for everyone.

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PRESCRIBED MUSIC The Pill by Dr. Dre has an impressive design and crisp sound to complement it

Dimensions: 190x46mm

Run time: Up to 7 hours

Weight: 310g

Integrated audio amplifier Connectivity: Wired, Bluetooth, wireless Transmission range: 9m


he 310g Beats by Dr. Dre Pill that comes in three colours is one of the better designed mini portable Bluetooth speakers. It has a striking design, strong sound and for its size has some pretty good extra features, such as tap-to-pair NFC for smartphones like the Samsung Galaxy S3 that support near-field communication, an audio output, and Apt-X technology, help set it apart. We liked its cylindrical shape as it fits nicely in hand. The product comes with a quality carrying case and fits will in a handbag when you are on the go. The bottom of the unit is rubberised to help keep it

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Connector: 1.5 m audio cable, 3.5mm to 3.5mm Compatibility: MP3, Smartphone, Android, Apple devices

from moving around when you crank the volume and fire up a bass-heavy track. Feature-wise, the Pill has a couple of extra features. It has a built-in speakerphone so if a call comes in while you’re streaming music to the speaker, you can hit the ‘B’ button on the front of the speaker to take the call and the music will pause. Another feature worth highlighting is the Pill’s connectivity. It charges via USB and has both an audio input and an audio output. Most of these little portable speakers have an input for connecting non-Bluetooth devices but the audio output is quite

interesting. The battery life is decent but not the best. You can play music for more or less six hours at a moderate volume. At USD200 (RO77) it is a reasonably priced portable Bluetooth speaker the only glitch however is its compatibility with all Bluetooth enabled devices. The device is said to encounter some problems with Apply devices. Overall, we think the Pill has an impressive design, it sounds a bit better than the competition despite its limitations and has a strong feature set. Its accompanying carrying case is nice too.

PARTY MACHINE Groove to the most amazing beats with Philips Mini Hi-Fi system

Compatibility: iPhone, iPod classic, mini, nano, shuffle, touch 2, 3 and 4 Size: 704x364x385mm Weight: 17.2kg

Treble and Bass Control for easy high and low tone settings

Total sound Power (RMS): 300W


hilips has brought out a unique hi-fi systemcontaining a rotatable dock for playing your favourite tunes even while charging your iPod oriPhone. The remarkable Mini Hi-FiFWP3100D sound system is one of the latest to enter the spinning world boasting a 300W total output, 5.25-inch woofers and 2-inch tweeters. The system is also compatible with the popular djay application, making it easier to mix, scratch and blast tunes to get the party going. One of the most impressive features is its dynamic lighting. This party-centric sound

machine emits lights blinking to the rhythm of the music and adding exuberance to your celebrations. The sound sensitive red, blue and purple lights can also be directed by remote control.MAX Sound technology produces an instant boost in the bass, volume performance and instantly creates the most impressive listening experience with just the touch of a button. Having a very simple and minimal setup, the party machine offers you a choice of pre-set Jazz, Rock, Pop and Classis controls that you could use to optimise the frequency range for different genres.

The Digital Sound Control makes it easy to get the most of your music by precisely adjusting the sound balance to match the music you are playing. Philips DJ friendly gear has entered the market with a spin. It indeed has everything that is needed for a great party. For connectivity the Philips music system comes with a 3.5mm jack, dual microphone socket and USB port making its a perfect karaoke host. The music system is a perfect companion for those who want perfect sound coupled with great music.

Available at Mustafa Sultan Electronics, 24636015

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BASE CONTENDER Beyerdynamic Custom One Pro with superb sound quality and comfy ear cups is the chunkiest earphones we have seen


retty impressive for its price tag, the Custom One Pro the first thing you notice about these headphones is that the cups are extremely large for a pair of over-ears. Though the Custom One’s are not very heavy, they are big and bulky. This makes it clear that sturdiness and audio quality have been prioritised as compared to the headphones portability. The other advantage is that all the cables are detached and you can store everything separately, leaving no need for cable wrapping. The Custom One Pro has multiple customisable accessories, such as plates for the outside of the cups and headbands, which can be swapped in and out depending on your style.

Ambient noise attenuation: approx. 18dBA Weight without cable: 290g

From a comfort point-of-view, there’s plenty of cushioning under the headband and the cups are well padded and quite comfortable. The ear cups sit around the ear, rather than on it, making them naturally insulating. It also partially cancels our noise, improving the quality of sound. Beyerdynamic, a German company has a long history in highperformance professional audio equipment and is now bringing this professional quality sound to consumers. According to them, the membranes used in the Custom One’s 16Ohm neodymium drivers are some of the lightest in the world and result in incredibly accurate sound playback. The sound is said to have incredible clarity and precision and each individual component of the music can be made out. The One Pro has a Custom sound slider on each ear cup that lets you switch between four bass modes, depending on the music you are listening to. The impressive part here is not only how quickly the mode kicks in when it is selected, but the power and definition of the bass even on the higher settings. Everyone has different preferences in music and the custom One Pro gives you the best of all worlds, although they aren’t the best looking headphones on the market. Once you rule out its appearance, these are a good sounding pair of headphones at just under USD224 (RO86).

Frequency response: 5Hz-35,000Hz Power handling capacity: 100mW Sound coupling to the ear: Circumaural

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Connector: Gold-plated mini stereo jack plug Accessories: Different style kits and cables

PREMIUM EAR BUDS We recommended earphones that level up against others in a fiercely competitive earphone market ATOMIC SOUND

Superior fit and comfort 13.5mm drivers for exceptional bass Reinforced gold plated, stainless steel connector

After wowing consumers with the SuperDarts in 2011, Atomic Floyd has raised its stakes with the HiDefDrums that are cut out to make an impact. These fantastic looking headphones are brushed with a metal finish on the earpieces and have a premium build quality. The red cable on them is a nice touch as well. As in-ears, comfort is subjective and with regard to noise cancelling, even though they aren’t built for it, at high volumes, you won’t hear anything outside. The HiDefDrums are more than impressive as its build and sound quality go hand-in-hand. Packed with an excellent triple-layered, double-stitched rubberised case to protect them, they sure are worth their USD165 (OR48) price tag.


The Swedish company has started sneaking out a series of neat contenders, one of the latest being the Nocs NS200s at USD66 (RO25). With straight jack, standard cables, a three-button remote and sleek dome of aluminium these earphones are minimalism personified. They’re extremely light, but very well designed. They pump out great quality music, given their size and appearance. The sound is warm without over amped bass and ambient noise too is very effectively cancelled. The attached remote and microphone setup is simple and fool-proof with three buttons, the top and bottom controlling volume and a central one that stops and starts playback as well as answers calls. The only disadvantage however, is its retro cable that gets tangled easily.

Tight bass Warm midrange In-line controls and microphone


In-ear design In-line remote In-line microphone

The Skullcandy headphone promises rich, powerful and crystal clear sound. This pair of stylish headphone with in-the-ear design filters the sound that reaches your ear drums and effectively isolates external noise. These headphones with perfectly contoured Comply foam tips, mould to the natural shape of your ear canal and are ergonomically designed headphones and feature a Mic3 that provides you with deep bass resonance and full spectrum of sound. It includes other features like volume control, track control with play, pause and calls feature. The Supreme Sound design of this headphone delivers attacking bass, natural vocals and precision highs. This headphone also comes with a metal case for secure storage.

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LUXURIOUS SOUND The LG Smart 3D Blu-ray home theatre system is guaranteed to make you the best party host Total Power Output: 1000 watts Instant tray open Quick booting Music ID Streaming USB Recording

Remote Control Unit AM Loop Antenna FM Antenna Wireless Rx Kit

Available at Oman Trading Establishment (OTE), 24831544


veryone enjoys sitting back at home and watching their favourite movie. LG takes that weekend norm to a whole new dimension with the LG Smart 3D Blu-ray Home Theatre system - HB966TRW. This home theatre system comes with the capability of playing 3D content and you will be happy to play your Avatar 3D edition Blu-ray in it without a hassle. A smart TV always compliments a good home theatre system, but that is the least of your worries as this LG Smart 3D Blu-ray Home Theatre has the capability of converting your TV into

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a smart TV, giving it all these extra smart functionalities. It gives you the ability to download media content from sites like YouTube and Picasa. Furthermore, you can browse the web and check your friend’s pages on Facebook and Twitter with no hassles at all. While on the inside it’s a technological marvel, on the outside, it’s is simplicity that earns the LG Smart 3D Blu-ray Home Theatre system player its distinct appeal. Its success stems from its simple formula of built-in Wi-Fi, lots of high-quality streaming-media services.

You can also enjoy your complete music collection on your iPod or iPhone through LG’s powerful speakers while recharging it straight from the convenient dock. Then use LG’s remote control to shuffle through your music library and find your favourite song. It entertains you and your family and simplifies everything. Its distinctive features include mood lighting that gives a beautiful aura to your living room and fully wireless speakers you can place wherever you like. Its unique, classic design complements your home and state-of-the-art digital technology is sure to make your neighbour envious.

EXPERIENTIAL SOUND If you are looking for a good all-round system with immaculate sound clarity, this Blu-ray home entertainment system is for you

Smart Hub Web Browser Front Wiring Subwoofer Glass Fibre Speaker

Wi-Fi Built-in My Karaoke Available at SARCO, 24593025


ith the Samsung HT-E5550 Blu-ray Home Entertainment System you will experience spectacular audio and a wide range of new entertainment possibilities. 3D Sound Plus delivers immersive 3D sound that is the perfect accompaniment to 3D viewing. You will also have the ability to access online Smart Hub content, services, and even browse the web on your TV. With the premium open type speaker design with phase plug technology, you can to enjoy all your entertainment with rich and clear audio. Samsung’s new open

type speaker design will undoubtedly enhance your listening experience. Phase plug technology boosts depth and clarity, allowing you to enjoy premium sound quality from your home entertainment system. Movies, TV and games become more immersive and exciting. You can make the most of your entertainment with the full range of sound. A built-in front-firing subwoofer at the bottom of the speaker delivers rich and deep lowend tones to ensure TV programmes, music and movies are vivid. Unlike comparable

AllShare Play

products, you won’t have to buy costly additional equipment for powerful audio. This Samsung home entertainment system has all you need to enjoy cinematic sound and magnificent music in the comfort of your living room. An added advance is the two HDMI slots that make importing all kinds of content possible without compression including pictures and videos from your digital camcorders and multimedia PCs. This attractive spec list is guaranteed to make your home entertainment experience livelier.

JANUARY 2013 / 29

ALL SQUARED-UP Harman Kardon CL’s iconic and unusual design is set to split opinion

Frequency Range: 16Hz-20kHz Type: Supra-aural (on-ear) Connection: Stereo 3.5mm


arman Kardon, the high-end audio brand finally decides to kick some beats with the Kardon CL and is specifically aimed at that segment. This design for a fact isn’t shy, sleek or sultry like its competitors; it is bold and at a launch it was said that these particular earpieces were designed keeping the original iPod’s shape. The earpieces come with two pairs of head bows in small and large and can be easily swapped by twisting the earpieces around the swivels. Crafted from matt-finished steel they made for maximum durability and magnetically attached ear pads can be removed for

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Ear pads: soft leather detachable Headband: Self adjusting housings

Phone Controls: Yes cleaning and replacement with ease. From a comfort point of view, they are supremely comfortable. The ear pads are lined with memory foam and fit your head comfortably, while the swivels allow those pads to stay put on your head. With an impressive 6 to 20,000 frequency response and a ported cabinet that recycles audio information from the rear of the headphone like a high-end speaker work brilliantly to present a clear acoustic vision.

products in mind. Overall, the audio is absolutely brilliant with high levels of comfort although its price is relatively high at USD170 (RO65). However, we are sure that the Harman Kardon CL is a great investment being an apt audio tool. To sum up, when given the option of choosing between the CL and another high-end headphone, consumers will choose the CL for its crisp sound but comfort-level for long term listening weighs it down.

Bass and midrange are luxurious and overall feels balanced and precise. This headphone set is specifically designed keeping Apple

For its price tag and no active noise cancellation, the Harman Kardon CL has tough competitors in the market.

OFF THE WALL SOUND A hallmark of Linn, Kiko offers great sound quality

Connectivity: Ethernet Power output: 33W RMS per channel into 4 ohms Dynamic range: 115dB Speaker outputs: 4x pole Neutrik Speakon (pair)

Audio playback: FLAC, WAV, Apple Lossless (ALAC), MP3, WMA, AIFF, AAC, OGG, 24-bit 192kHz Size: 280x270x75mm (amp), 260x146x187mm (speakers) Weight: 2.4kg (amp), 3.08kg (speakers)


inn’s music streamers have been big on function rather than form and the compact Kiko at USD3296 (RO1270) is a ‘just add a computer’ solution with sleek design, active speakers, slick setup wizard and a range of colours to choose from. The Kiko main unit is half the width of regular hi-fi components, can be used standing on end and the ‘wing’ cross section makes its metal casework quite distinctive. You operate it either with the slim line silver handset, which has buttons labelled with obscure pictograms which you will eventually get used to or by using Linn’s Kinsky software on computer, iOS or Android handset. The front panel shows you

a Linn logo when you fire it up and volume numbers, but beyond that all you get are those pictograms. We think that the symbols make it user friendly. In order to play music on your networked computer or handheld you will either need the Kinsky app or Songcast, which lets you ‘play to’ Kiko. Each speaker drive unit is said to be driven by a separate amplifier within the Kiko unit for the best possible amp or speaker matching. Although this might be a dinky little system, but it delivers awesome sound from punchy bass to smooth, involving treble whether you’re playing hard rock or Linn-label jazz. Ni-i-ice. As well as playing

all the music stored on your local network the little Kiko can also access web services such as Spotify via AirPlay on an iDevice or Songcast. It’s easily incorporated into your existing system, thanks to digital audio inputs and HDMI ins and outs for video. However, the only disappointment is that it has to be wired to your router if there is no Wi-Fi. With easy glitch free installation and set-up, clever design and that it comes complete with speakers, we can see Kiko selling the streaming idea to a lot of customers. But we really would have liked a proper front-panel display to enable it to be used without computer or tablet control.

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FEATURE-FILLED DOCK Packing FM, DAB and Internet radio, the Pure Sensia 200D is a funky little dock station Audio power output: 30W RMS

Output connectors: USB. 3.5mm headphone socket

Display: 5.7-inch Capacitive TFT display

Speakers: Two full-range 3” drive units

Dimensions: 166x280x180mm

Weight: 1.9kg Remote: Infrared remote control

ChargePAK: Optional ChargePAK F1 in-unit rechargeable battery pack

Controls: 5.7touchscreen display, standby button, volume controls and mute


he Pure Sensia 200D Connect is a tiny, rugby-ball shaped device that features a 5.7-inch touchscreen up front, stereo speakers on the side, four physical buttons on top, an aerial, and ports for power, headphones, aux-in and USB on the back. The USP of the 200D is its capacitive touchscreen and it is widely improved as compared to the previous model. It is smooth to navigate through the plethora of options on screen. The 200D Connect sits on a little plastic cradle, with slots for adjustable display angle and it possesses a quirky little remote

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complete with a shiny red record button. it come in two colour options namely black and slick white. You can instantly record radio that you’re listening to and schedule future recordings with three spaces on offer for recording your favourite daily or weekly shows. This feature-packed dock station is complete with DAB radio, FM radio, Internet radio, podcast options, listen again features and apps. PureStream, a great addition to the setup is a wireless technology that uses DLNA connectivity, combined with the free Pure Lounge app, to transfer your tunes over the airwaves to the 200D from your other devices.

From a sound quality point of view, Pure has pumped some extra power into the 200D Connect’s sound setup, offering 30W of output from the DSP tuned high efficiency class-D amplifiers and in-house custom designed full-range speakers. If you are looking for a multi-featured contemporary radio setup and would rather use your phone or tablet as an additional control option then the Pure Sensia 200D Connect is highly recommended. At a shy of USD330 (RO127), it’s pretty expensive or a dock station, but with radio and streaming options on board the 200D Connect, combined with the easy to use touchscreen, it is worth every penny.

INNOVATIVE CONSOLE Pioneer’s XDJ-Aero with its curious new WiFi functionality is a well-received controller Head room: 19 dB Recording file: WAV Frequency response: 20 Hz˜20 kHz Playable file formats: USB connection: MP3, AAC, WAV, AIFF or Wi-Fi

Playable media: iOS, Android, Windows, USB storage devices Total harmonic distortion: Max. 0.003 per cent (Wi-Fi/USB PLAY)


ioneer has enjoyed a fairly tight grip on the upper-end of the DJ market but the competition seems to be getting tougher when compared to other brands. The XDJ-Aero features a new WiFi functionality which is pretty interesting. It hints a new approach; the Aero lets you play direct from USB and ditch CDs and all the other paraphernalia. It is suggested that if you’ve used a Pioneer DJ product in the last six years you are guaranteed to feel even more at home with the XDJ. The XDJ-Aero is made of plastic and aluminium that houses two ‘deck’ sections, one on either side of the central mixer. It has been

made with a slim and stylish design; the smoke-coloured acrylic panel around a slim, rounded case and blue and white LEDs illuminating the low-profile makes it a good looking controller. A noteworthy function includes a better-half companion that is the rekordbox. This is free app, available for Mac, PC, Android and iOS is straightforward and interesting. All you have to do is choose the ‘load’ option, browse through the library on your device and choose the deck you want to load it to. This beast is guaranteed to make your improve-skills flow. It cancels out the need

of a laptop and you can make a party roar with just a smartphone. By being platformagnostic you can tweak out a lot of noise that can often come with today’s more advanced programs. Feature-wise, the XDJ-Aero truly strides ahead as compared to a standard vinyl setup. Software controllers like these occupy a good share of the market and we think the vinyl days are almost over. Pioneer has understood that a large number of DJs are moving towards more logical equipment. With a USB connection, sleek, space-saving design, WiFi and a USD1400 (RO540) price tag, it is an ideal software controller.

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SLEEKER, FASTER, The new generation iMac does a lot more than just sit pretty


he new iMac claims to be better in all the ways you’d expect a redesigned product. It sports an improved display that cuts down on glare by 75 per cent and reduced its volume by 40 per cent. For the first time, the iMac is missing a built-in optical drive and for the sleek design that it has, the iMac delivers substantial improvements as compared to the last generation model. We find out if its performance and display is as good as Apple has been leading us to believe.


The new 21.5in iMac is a lot slimmer than its predecessor, thanks to the elimination of the optical drive and a new manufacturing technique ‘friction-stir welding.’ The aluminium chassis is 5mm thick at the edges

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and bows out in the middle where the stand connects to the system. The downside is that the height of the monitor can’t be adjusted. With a 1920x1080 resolution LED backlit IPS screen, Apple has tamed stray reflections with a combination of anti-glare coating and tighter construction. At the back, you will find the system’s four USB 3.0 ports, two Thunderbolt ports, Ethernet, a Kensington lock port, and an SDXC slot. The second Thunderbolt port replaces the FireWire 800 port that was on the last version of the iMac. The SD slot has inconveniently been moved to the back from the side, but that is the price of slimness.


Despite trimming the body of the iMac, Apple has managed to beef up its performance. With OS X Mountain Lion, it

has 2.7GHz quad-core i5 processor at its centre with 8Gb of 1600GHz DDR memory, a 1TB Fusion Drive and a NVIDIA GeForce GT 650M graphics chip. Although it isn’t a revolutionary feature, it shows that Macs continue to compete with PCs on any level. However, for the first time in the iMac’s 15year history, there’s no optical drive. It has the capability of handling fairly strenuous graphics tasks and gaming as well and it is certainly apt for the average college student gamer. The iMac comes with a wireless keyboard and Magic Mouse. The included mouse and keyboard are the same standard Bluetoothbased ones that Apple has been using for years. The power cord feeds an internal power supply, so there will be no need for you to use an external power brick. Setup is

STRONGER kept to a minimum as just the power cord has to be plugged on during the start-up and you can begin using your system within minutes. The 1TB hard drive provides ample space, since the only thing on it is OS X (10.8 Mountain Lion) and iLife. It is recommended that you have an external SuperDrive if you still have programs on CD or DVD. The iMac comes with Boot Camp, a Windows compatible environment, where your iMac runs Windows (XP and above) seamlessly, however, you’ll need your own copy of Windows to set up Boot Camp. The iMac is said to perform quiet as a

mouse even during CPU-heavy tasks. The iMac’s new speaker setup too is phenomenal as it pumps out a good amount of quality sound, while listening to music or watching a movie. Though the screen isn’t touch sensitive, OS X doesn’t require a touch screen for daily operation.


The iMac is a great product and despite Apple’s reputation of having highly priced gadgets, this computer is actually of great value. As other computers are really making any effort to catch up in terms of the screen resolution and design they don’t stand a chance against the iMac. Cutting down on

screen glare is a great advantage as well. With regard to the fusion drive, it is rare to find most systems that use HDD for storage and that serves as an advantage. Even with a USD1800 (RO1361) price tag, this 21-incher is quite powerful and is a great option for use in the office or a family-shared machine. Its only drawback however is that neither of the Apple desktops have a built-in optical drives. We only wish Apple manufactured an iMac with touch screen capability, or is that too much to ask?

Storage Type: HDD Processor Family: Intel Core i5, Intel Core i5 Processor Speed: 2.7GHz RAM: 8GB Storage Capacity: 1TB Fusion Drive Graphics Card: Nvidia GeForce GT 640M LE Monitor Type: LCD Widescreen Screen Size: 21.5 inches Operating System: Mac OS X 10.8 Native Resolution: 1920x1080

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ENTERTAINMENT UNLIMITED The Tokyo based company has packed the shelves with a true family entertainer

Operating system: Windows 8 64-bit Memory: 4GB DDR3 Display: 23-inch, 1920x1080pixels Hard drive: 1TB


ith the domination of laptops and tablets, Toshiba introduced the All-in-One desktop PC that is guaranteed to create a revolution in the PC arena. The LX830 is a slim and space saving device that is suitable for family use as well as for small office homes.


The 23-inch screen dominates the front of the machine, set in a steel grey surround. The grey surround slopes down towards the bottom of the screen housing two speaker grilles. Toshiba boasts that no external speakers are required as they pump out good quality sound. The back of 36 / TECH

the PC is classic and is made entirely from black plastic. The backside has a decent number of the ports and a few of them residing on the side for quick access.


The LX830 is powered with the latest third generation Intel Core i7 processor that allows for efficient multitasking. It features a hard drive of up to 3TB and a fast system memory of up to 16GB DDR3 RAM for a powerful performance. Available with Windows 8, the LX830 offers touchscreen functionality for an increased level of control through direct interaction with the display. The PC also

comes with wireless keyboard and a mouse for convenient computing. The PC features USB 3.0 ports allowing fast and easy file transfer. You can also fill the PC with all your favourite entertainment thanks to the 1TB hard drive.


The desktop PC sure ticks a lot of boxes in terms of convenience, size, good looks, sharp screen and processor. At an affordable price the 1080p screen looks great when playing high definition footage. The LX830 is a good choice if you’re looking to replace both the TV and PC in your bedroom with an all-in-one device.



ESSENTIAL Action packed games, every gamer’s must-have


(Free) It’s the year 2020. A nuclear war has broken out. 5 countries have emerged as the major superpowers in the devastating war. Which one are you?


(Free) Overkill is about shooting. It is about loving and upgrading your gun. You will need quick reflexes and superior aiming skills to shoot your way out of this one

Call of Duty Zombies

(USD4.99) Up to four players must survive endless waves of attacking Zombies, earning points from killing zombies and repairing defences

Star Warfare: Alien Invasion

(Free) A beautiful and peaceful planet located at the far edge of human territory. It is a happy and wealthy region until the aliens appear



Modern Combat 4: Zero Hour

Age of Legends

(USD6.99) Step into the boots of a number of US soldiers, whose collective job it is to stop president-abducting

(USD0.99) The war-torn lands of Nekuria hold many secrets. There’s danger, excitement and glory awaiting you. Heroes are remembered, but legends never die.

Grand Theft Auto: Vice City

Crime Inc.

(USD4.99) Vice City takes you back to the 1980s of big hair, excess and pastel suits comes a story of one man’s rise to the top of the criminal pile

Nightmare from the Deep

(Free) Set sail on a mind-boggling pirate adventure. Dive into a journey as a museum owner in pursuit of an un-dead pirate who has kidnapped your daughter, taking her away in his ghost galleon

Zenonia 5

(Free) Long ago, a great war was fought to restore peace and harmony to mankind. From the ruins of a slum village, rises a hero destined for greatness

(Free) Anything can be achieved with enough money in your pockets, and the right bodies in the morgue. You don’t play Crime Inc., you live it.

Forces of war

(Free) Represent your country and annihilate all those who oppose you. Conquer the world by land, air and sea. Show the world that you will not go down without a fight.

Superheroes Alliance

(Free) Fight against the evils of the world using super powers, weapons and vehicles. Shoulder the responsibility that comes with superhuman power.

JANUARY 2013 / 37



This clutter-free, button-less camera can be fitted into a jacket pocket or hand bag. The 4.8-inch touch-sensitive screen seems apt and the top has just a shutter release button, zoom control, power button along with a pop up flash. Overall, the camera has a very sleek and neat look.


If you were envious about professionals with their amazing shots and advanced cameras, there isn’t any need for you to be anymore as this camera comes with a variety of modes like action freeze, waterfall trace, light trace and so on. All you have to do is tap the Smart Pro option. It also possesses a fully Manual mode if you are a photography enthusiast.


You can shoot your videos in slow motion instead of just playing them back. It captures your precious moments at an amazing 120fps and a 720x480 resolution. The videos are crystal clear and in a way make your memories timeless.


The 121.2mm HD touch screen emits vivid colours and also has a great touch response. With ultra-sharp 308 pixels per inch and full spectrum colours your images look crisp. You can double the brightness of the screen without consuming too much battery.


Edit your photographs and give them a professional finish with ease with a set of over 65 powerful editing features. The ultrafast quad core processor gives you access to features like auto face calibration so you can edit in precise detail.


Group photos take longer to upload and the Galaxy Camera allows you to share photos in real time, as you shoot them using Share Shot and WiFi direct. Complete with Android Jelly Bean OS you can also download apps and make the most of what your camera has to offer.

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Smartphones come in handy as they help you instantly capture, edit and upload pictures on social networking sites; however they aren’t as advanced as compact cameras. Samsung, a company that has been making smartphones and dedicated cameras has decided to merge the best aspect of the two devices and created the Samsung Galaxy Camera. The 16-megapixel camera has an optical zoom range of 21x and weights just 300g. We tell you why this smart camera is a keeper.

HIGH DEFINITION WARRIOR EOS 1D C is a movie-centred, full frame Digital SLR

18.1-Megapixel Sensor Type: Full frame CMOS sensor

Lens mount: Canon EF mount


erfect for professional photographers that likes to shoot movies whilst in motion, the Canon range of EOS cameras are a representation of breakthrough in the field of cinematography. It is a rugged, flexible and compact DSLR specifically designed for film-making. At a shy USD12,000 (RO4620) price tag, the 1D is a great option for pro shooters who prefer a 18MP 4K camera with EOS lens compatibility and a full frame sensor. Compatible Lenses: Canon EF Lenses, Canon EF Cinema lenses Recording pixels: 5208X3477 effective pixels Screen: 3.2-inch

You will have to invest in a high-end battery and at least 100MB/s CF cards. The 1D C captures 4096x2160 video at 24 frames per second with an approximate file size of 3.76 gigs per minute of footage as mentioned in the manual. Although this camera has just hit the markets, lucky shooters have had the opportunity to take this beast for a spin and the feedback is positive. You immediately recognise the compact weight and size of the 1D C. Film making with 4K can be made as creative as you want it to be. Built with on board 4K recording at 24P or HD recording at a range of frame rates up to 60p and Clean HD via HDMI, the EOS-1D C offers additional capabilities for film and TV production as well as image-specific acquisition applications. Coupled with Canon’s compact EF-mount lenses, the EOS-1D C facilitates 4K image origination in the most challenging environments and provides optimum performance. In a way it opens up fresh cinematic opportunities as you develop the feel of the camera. If you can shell out a good 15K and are on the way to becoming the best-in- class cinematographer, we say, go for it. JANUARY 2013 / 39


WiiCKED CONSOLATION Bringing a gaming experience filled with innovation and excitement


intendo’s new console, the Nintendo Wii U, hopes to rectify its predecessor’s shortcomings by delivering a gaming experience like no other. Despite its 259x135x23mm size, it’s incredibly lightweight to hold and its contours have been perfectly moulded to the shape of your hands. One of the best features is its 6.2-inch touchscreen which sits in between two analogue sticks, a d-pad, four face buttons and two small start and select buttons. It also comes with a stylus which slots neatly to the back of the controller in case you don’t want to smear your fingerprints all over the screen. Its 854x480 resolution provides a crisp and vivid display. Like its predecessor, it has a SD, SDHC card reader next to the disc tray USB

40 / TECH

ports at the back, although Nintendo now increased this to a total of four by placing two more USB ports in with the SD reader. While every Wii U shares the same fundamental hardware, Nintendo has opted for two different storage options. The white ‘basic’ Wii U model has just 8GB internal flash memory while the more expensive black ‘premium’ model has 32GB. The Wii U only comes with only one gamepad but each console can support two. The GamePad is a showstopper by itself containing an accelerometer, gyroscope and geomagnetic sensor inside it making motion sensor an integral part of your gamming sensation. The Wii U once again sees Nintendo plotting its own course through innovation rather than bleedingedge tech and the results are as unique and satisfying.


SUPER MARIO BROS U Super Mario Bros U is an amazing jump start from the Mario’s 2D platform. It incorporates the best elements from the classics and mixes them into the U’s new joyful and friendly courses. Its starts with the familiar story line where princes Peach is held hostage and it is up to Mario to save her. The first half of the game there game there is not much difficulty; troublesome enemies are at a minimum, power-ups are plentiful and the environments are pretty much like a playground. The first few worlds boost the player’s confidence, though however the patience drains out later as you squander away your remaining lives.

ZOMBIEU ZombieU begins by throwing the players in the middle of the action, chased through the streets of London by the undead. The survivor stumbles upon a safe room, where a mysterious voice who calls himself ‘The Prepper’ seems well prepared for the zombie apocalypse and welcomes the chance to help any survivor. Prepper gives various missions throughout the game. ZombiU is played in a first-person perspective. There are three modes that the gamers can chose form- assault, killing box and survival. New perks including mines and health packs will be unlocked as the player earns more kills. The game is unforgiving and brutal, but in the best of ways that challenges the player to carefully considers each step.

JUST DANCE 4 Ubisoft’s Just Dance 4 will not likely be a disappointment to those who have loved its predecessors. The game comes in three modes- single player, multiplayer and fitness offering everybody something to look forward to. As you perform the songs you will be awarded points, levelling up your profile which in turns helps you to unlock surprise contents. Songs also have a difficulty level and as if trying to perfect the song wasn’t enough drive, each song has a number of challenges associated with it. Boasting over 40 tracks out of the box, Just Dance 4 will definitely not make any party boring.

JANUARY 2013 / 41

ZESTFUL PLAYATHON Whether it’s for a long journey or a day at home, Sony has it all


ony has ruled the console kingdom with its PlayStation series. PlayStation 3, the successor to PlayStation 2, includes some exclusive features that the gamers would love.PS3 users can enjoy unified online gaming service, connectivity with PlayStation Portable, PlayStation Vita and its use of the Blu-ray Disc as its primary storage medium. PS3 is a graphical powerhouse with a cutting-edge Cell processor and customised Nvidia graphics chip that makes most gaming PCs envious. The 120GB Slim is nearly identical to the 80GB and 160GB ‘fat’ PS3 models. Even though Sony hasn’t added any new feature to the new PS3 slim, it is more affordable and come with a significantly compact design and quieter operation. The successor to the Playstation Portable, PS Vita features a ‘super oval’ shape with

42 / TECH

a 5-inch OLED touchscreen. The device has two analog sticks, a D-pad, two shoulder buttons (L and R), a PlayStation button and Start and Select buttons. PS Vita also houses a rear touch pad, two camera, stereo speakers, microphone, Sixaxis motion sensing system, three-axis electronic compass, built-in GPS receiver as well as WiFi, 3G and Bluetooth. The 960x544 panel boasts some fantastically wide viewing angles. The Vita’s perimeter is loaded with ports, slots and even more buttons. Though the console’s smooth surface is a magnet for oil and dust, this piece of hardware hopes to give users a smartphone like interaction. Sony promises three to five hours of gameplay on normal mode and at least 20 minutes extra on flight mode making long flight journeys no more boring. PlayStation Vita is possibly one of the best portable gaming consoles, offering something for everyone.


SUPER MARIO BROS U Super Mario Bros U is an amazing jump start from the Mario’s 2D platform. It incorporates the best elements from the classics and mixes them into the U’s new joyful and friendly courses. Its starts with the familiar story line where princes Peach is held hostage and it is up to Mario to save her. The first half of the game there game there is not much difficulty; troublesome enemies are at a minimum, power-ups are plentiful and the environments are pretty much like a playground. The first few worlds boost the player’s confidence, though however the patience drains out later as you squander away your remaining lives.

CALL OF DUTY: BLACK OPS II ZombieU begins by throwing the players in the middle of the action, chased through the streets of London by the undead. The survivor stumbles upon a safe room, where a mysterious voice who calls himself ‘The Prepper’ seems well prepared for the zombie apocalypse and welcomes the chance to help any survivor. Prepper gives various missions throughout the game. ZombiU is played in a first-person perspective. There are three modes that the gamers can chose form- assault, killing box and survival. New perks including mines and health packs will be unlocked as the player earns more kills. The game is unforgiving and brutal, but in the best of ways that challenges the player to carefully considers each step.

HITMAN: ABSOLUTION Ubisoft’s Just Dance 4 will not likely be a disappointment to those who have loved its predecessors. The game comes in three modes- single player, multiplayer and fitness offering everybody something to look forward to. As you perform the songs you will be awarded points, levelling up your profile which in turns helps you to unlock surprise contents. Songs also have a difficulty level and as if trying to perfect the song wasn’t enough drive, each song has a number of challenges associated with it. Boasting over 40 tracks out of the box, Just Dance 4 will definitely not make any party boring.

JANUARY 2013 / 43

XCLUSIVE GAMING A game machine that has something for everyone


he Xbox 360 has changed from a machine primarily about playing games, to an entertainment and media hub with a modest selection of online content. Measuring 269x264x74mm and weighing just 2.7Kgs, the current Xbox is noticeably smaller than the Xbox 360 Elite. Microsoft was able to reduce the system’s size almost 17 per cent by combining the CPU and GPU onto the chipset and moving the swappable 250GB hard drive to the interior of the unit. In place of the old matte finished exterior is the glossy, piano-black enclosure that is very easy on the eye and seeks attention from dust and fingerprints. The primary fan and air vent now houses on top of the console and is much quieter making the system near silent. The console now

44 / TECH

has three more USB 2.0 ports, HDMI and composite AV ports. Microsoft has also added an internal WiFi radio. Kinect for Xbox 360 uses a 3D camera with integrated microphone that allows players to interact with specially designed games without using a controller or headset. Visually the Xbox 360 delivers realistic characters with fine details for instance muscle tone and facial expressions. The technology accurately picks up gestures that make the gaming experience out of this world. Microsoft has made some fine improvements to the new Xbox 360 to make it a worthy purchase. The slick and compact design, internal WiFi and increased storage are attractive touches to the gaming machine.


FIFA 13 FIFA 13 is definitely a polished and revamped entry and plays much better than its predecessor with Skill Games and deeper Career Mode as welcome additions. The additions to the game have significantly changed the feel of the EA’s football, delivering a shot of realism to the on-pitch action. Unlike before, the players now have to be aware of factors like speed, weather and opponents jockeying for position. All the tweaks add up to a football experience that feels as real and unpredictable as the real game itself. Xbox 360 owners can even use Kinect to change formations and substitute players.

ASSASSINS CREED III An image that every gamer is familiar is, the hooded figure balancing on top of as skyscraper looking down at the city below. The Boson Tea Party, Paul Revere’s famous ride and George Washington crossing the Delaware Rivers aren’t just any important historical events but symbols of self-sacrifice and a quest for independence. Assassin’s Creed follows hot-tempered Native American assassin Connor for almost his entire life. The game is more combat-focussed than the previous games in the series and there is a lot less leaping around ruined buildings and much more stalking and killing, of man and beast both.

HALO 4 The game starts off with the ending of Halo 3, where Master Chief is awaken from cryo sleep by his side-kick Cortana. Their ship is caught in the gravity well of a Forerunner plant called Requiem where much of the game takes place. Chief and Cortona encounters an exciting new enemy, Prometheans. Meanwhile, Cortona is almost the end of her seven years Artificial Intelligence lifespan and is at a risk of dying if she is not treated soon. The presentation is top notch with outstanding graphics. Attention to detail has been looked into giving the game a film like quality.

JANUARY 2013 / 45


See what happens to humanity when stranded on an island that has long forgotten civilisation


magine being stranded in a lawless island, ruled by piracy and human misery, trapped in a place that has forgotten right from wrong. The only escape you have are guns and violence and you can smell death all around you. Developed by Ubisoft Montreal, Far Cry 3 is an open world first-person shooter video game. Set on a tropical Asian-Pacific archipelago called Rock Islands, the players step into the shoes of Jason Brody who becomes stranded on the island after a vacation goes awry. Jason and his group of friends all land in different parts of the pirate-infested island and are taken prisoner by the lord named Vaas. Jason breaks out of captivity and kills everyone who comes in his path including Vaas and a few other pirates and heads out to save his friends. During his escape he meets Citra, a priestess of the island Rakyat, who initiates him to stay on the island and be part of their tribe. Throughout the adventure, he matures into a fearsome warrior and is admired by the Rakyat. His old friends are disturbed by his transformation into a killer, especially when he contemplates on staying on the island permanently. The game has two endings



Xbox 360




depending on the story you would like to follow. The player must choose whether to execute his friends, that were captivated by Citra, and remain with her or save them and leave the island. Far Cry 3 is the third main title in the Far Cry series but isn’t a direct sequel to either Far Cry or Far Cry 2. There are several types of missions in Far Cry 3, similar to that of Far Cry 2. Story Missions, Path of the Hunter, WANTED Dead, Supply Drop and Side Missions are the various missions you could try throughout the game. The game’s writer Jeffrey Yohalem claimed that the intention of the game’s plot was to make a statement about what shooting means and what it does to humanity. The protagonist Jason Brody is not a trained soldier, but rather a common man who is forced to become a killer because of the situation he is put in. This game ignites the desire to complete every last challenge and icon on the map. You gradually journey across the whole of two sunny and sinful islands. Far Cry 3 is an excellent game that keeps the player exploring deeper into the many paths of the game, keeping them occupied.

Publisher: Ubisoft Developer: Ubisoft Montreal Platform(s): Xbox 360, PS3 Genre: Action ESRB Rating: Mature

SCORE Gameplay Graphics Story Replayability OVERALL

8 9 9 8 9




Xbox 360, PS3

PC, PS3, Xbox 360

Xbox 360, PS3





BLAST FROM THE PAST An old school motorcycle, with the magic of the 21st century


1140cc air-cooled DOHC engine that harks back to so many classic high performance Hondas. The twin-shock rear suspension and 18-inch wheels are built on a classic bike theme still delivering sporty performance.

With timeless looks it retains the CB1100 owns special place in sports. Better yet, the bike isn’t just about its sleek lines and its classic approach but also the powerful

The powerful, thoroughly modern tripledisc brake setup offers the ABS option. There’s also the dual-overhead cam layout and four valves per cylinder for superior engine breathing, Honda’s sophisticated Programmed Fuel Injection for the latest in accurate fuel metering and consistent power production, plus a lot more contemporary touches. All these modern highlights complement the CB1100’s enduring style to create a fresh category of motorcycle that’s just right for the times.

ong rides against the wind, climbing up winding roads and the sun above your head-they say that your bike will be with you through thick and thin. A motorcycle, for most, is a man’s best friend and every ride is too short when the bike is really good. Whether its style statement, power, mileage, comfort or a traditional touch, every biker looks at specifics when choosing their ride. What if we told you there is a perfect blend of all these aspects and is a modern interpretation of the traditional Honda CB750.

48 / TECH

The new 1140cc air-cooled DOHC engine generates impressive amounts of midrange power plus a smooth, sophisticated feel for a rewarding riding experience. The bike offers precise styling and ergonomics for a relaxed, open seating position and excellent versatility for all kinds of street-riding. Another interesting feature is the Programmed Fuel Injection (PGM-FI) which continuously monitors numerous variables to ensure correct fuel mixture is delivered for the existing riding and atmospheric conditions. The CB1100 is rider-friendly with its low seating at a height of 31.3-inhces and the classic dual-shock rear suspension system features spring preload adjustability.

Engine type: 1140cc air and oil cooled inline four cylinder Transmission: Five-speed Transmission Fuel capacity: 14.6l including 3.5l reserve Kerb weight: 248kg Dimension: 2,195x835x1130mm

JANUARY 2013 / 49


RACE READY The most up-and-coming race car, the 911 GT3 has performance enough to satisfy any driver’s appetite for speed


uilt on the same production line as the road version of the 911, the 911 GT3 Cup is a lightweight, stripped out 991 that have been designed for a one-make race series. As the most successful race car in the world, since 1998, 2,395 units of the near standard vehicle for customer sport have been produced. The 911 is powered by a 3.8-litre, sixcylinder flat engine and generates 460hp

DIMENSION Wheelbase: 234.95cm Length: 446.024cm Width: 181cm Height: 122.174cm

50 / TECH

(338kW) at 7,500 revs, surpassing its predecessor by 10hp. A six-speed dog-type gearbox developed by Porsche Motorsport which is operated by shift paddles at the steering wheel for the first time in a Porsche brand trophy race car transmits the power to the rear axle. The single piece race wheels with centre mount were also newly designed by Porsche Motorsport. The width of the Michelin race slicks was increased by two centimetres to 27 centimetres at the front

and by 10 millimetres at the rear axle to now measure 31 centimetres. While developing the new car, emphasis was put on the safety of the driver. The newly designed safety cage protects the pilot in case of a roll or a collision as does a newly developed race seat which is distinctively shaped around the head and shoulders and can be adjusted individually with the help of padding. This beast is priced at USD159,000 (RO61,218).

VEHICLE TYPE: rear-engine, rear-wheel-drive, 1-passenger, 2-door coupe

ENGINE TYPE: DOHC 24-valve flat-6, aluminium block and heads, port fuel injection

TRANSMISSION: 6-speed manual Curb weight: 1134kg Topspeed: 171mph

JANUARY 2013 / 51


SPARKLE EFFECT We will learn to add sparkling light effects to photographs

Photographers who takes pictures of the city at night can use different filters in their professional camera to achieve certain effects on their photographs. `Photoshop helps to get the same details without the aid of any professional equipment.

Final light effect We have chosen a picture of the Sydney Harbour for this tutorial. You could use any picture as long as there are lights against the night sky. Duplicate it once with Ctrl+J and select light sources from Image > Adjustments > Levels. Set with similar settings as shown below:

Most of the picture would disappear except for the bright spots. You can also remove the redundant spots using the black colour from the Brush Tool.

INITIAL IMAGE to start with 52 / TECH


Change layer mode to Screen and duplicate the layer with Ctrl+J. To create interesting professional camera lighting effect apply Filter > Blur > Motion Blur to the current layer.

It can be strengthened through Image > Adjustments > Levels with moderate settings

The effect is not very noticeable now

For more realistic effects, press Ctrl+F to repeat Motion Blur.


Let’s start with the second part of the effect. Go to the layer under and apply Filter > Blur > Motion Blur, but don’t forget to change to opposite.

Final image For the layer below, apply the Image > Adjustments > Levels. Now, press Ctrl+F to make this glowing more realistic. We now have an image that looks just as good as any professional click.

JANUARY 2013 / 53


T Director: Ruben Fleischer Genre: Action, crime, drama Cast: Sean Penn, Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone

he movie is set in the year 1949 in loss Los Angeles. A ruthless Brooklyn born mob king Mickey Cohen (Sean Penn) has the town wrapped around his finger, reaping the ill-gotten gains from the drugs, the guns and every wire bet placed in the west of Chicago. He does it all with the protection of not only his own paid goons, but also the police and the politicians who work with him hand-in-glove. This mob lord is enough to intimidate even the bravest, streethardened cop, except, perhaps, for the small, secret crew of LAPD outsiders led by Sgt John O’Mara (Josh Brolin) and Jerry Wooters (Ryan Gosling), who come together to bring Mickey Cohen down. Shooting entirely in and around Los Angeles, including in many of the actual locations featured in the story, ‘The Gangster Squad’ is a colourful retelling of events surrounding the LAPD’s efforts to take back their embryonic city from one of the most dangerous mafia bosses of all time. The screenplay is by Will Beall of ‘Castle’, based on Paul Lieberman’s series of articles entitled ‘Tales From the Gangster Squad.’ The film is being produced by Dan Lin of ‘Sherlock Holmes’, Kevin McCormick and Michael Tadross. ‘The Gangster Squad’ stars Penn as real-life mobster Mickey Cohen; Brolin and Gosling as the LAPD’s Sgt. John

O’Mara and Jerry Wooters; and Stone as Grace Faraday, Cohen’s female gangster companion and the object of Wooters’ attention. The movie also stars Robert Patrick from ‘Flags of Our Fathers’ as Officer Max Kennard, a deadly cop who patrols the Olvera Street beat, Michael Peña ‘Battle as Kennard’s over-eager sidekick, Navidad Ramirez, Giovanni Ribisi as the force’s Conway Keeler, an electronics expert who takes as much pleasure in fixing his son’s bike as he does in tampering with experimental, militarygrade equipment and Anthony Mackie as Coleman Harris, a switchblade-wielding cop who proudly patrols the crime-ridden areas of the city.

DVD Releases 8 January

15 January

Frankenweenie Animation Comedy 54 / TECH

15 January

29 January

The Possession

Taken 2

Seven Psychopaths


Action Thriller


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Welcome to our ‘TECH Favourites’ section. With these lists we aim to keep you updated with our favourite products in a concise format. Please give us your feedback on the basis of which we can further improve it.


N New

LG 60PA6500 60-inch, 2MP, full HD, USB port movie play(DIVX HD),600Hz sub-field, razor frame, 3 HDMI AND PC input PenTouch Plasma HD Ready TV with 600Hz Tru Motion flow.


U Updated

3D TVs

SONY KDL46EX650 46-inch Dynamic LED, 2MP, Full HD, 100HZ, WiFi ready, 2USB movie, 4HDMI, X-reality

LG 72LM9500 3D LED 72-inch Smart TV, full HD, four HDMI/ PC input, USB port, energy saving mode, Ethernet, magic remote, smart share



SONY 46NX720

RO475 SONY KDL65HX925 65-inch full LED 3D TV, 2 MP, full HD, 800HZ motion flow, 2 USB port, 4HDMI


1MP, HD Ready, 32-inch LCD TV with 3 HDMI/PC inputs. It features Surround Sound and an OPC sensor. It sports a USB port


SAMSUNG UA65EX8000 3D LED smart TV 46-inch screen, full HD, 2 MP, 400Hz, 2 USB port, Internet TV, 3 HDMI



46-inch 3D LED, 2MP, Full HD, All share, 200HZ CMZ, 2 HDMI, WiFi ready, 2 USB port play movie

51-inch 3D Plasma, HDMI, AV com. PC input



46-inch LED, 2MP, Full HD. 100HZ motion, All share, 2 HDMI, PC input, USB port, Wide colour enhancer N


PANASONIC TH-L32E3R 32-inch 3D Plasma, full HD, 2MP, SD card slot, 3 HDMI INPUT and 600Hz sub-field drive, pc input




3D LED 46-inch screen, full HD, 2MP, 2D to 3D Converter, Wi-Fi, four HDMI, PC inputs, three USB ports




46-inch 3D LED TV, 2MP, full HD, 1080p 2 USB port, 2D-3D converter, 4HDMI, PC input, Wi-Fi built in




SHARP LC-60LE940 60-inch full HD LED TV, 3D Smart TV, 2D to 3D conversion, skype, youtube, webbrowser


SAMSUNG UA32EH4500 32-inch LED Smart TV, 1MP, HD ready, 2HDMI, Ethernet, All share, 2 USB port movie play


RO180 Disclaimer: Prices quoted in the magazine maybe subject to change. Please check with your local dealer for current costs. Lists are not in any particular order


LG DM-5620


LG BH7520T

Blu-ray 3D home theatre, DVD, VCD, MP3, 100 Watts, USB input

4200W PMPO/DVD,CD,MP3 PLAYBACK,usb play playback,cassete play back, FM radio.

3D Blu-ray Home theatre system, 1000watts RMS, smart hub, DVD, VCD, CD, MP3, CD-R, USB port play movie, all share play

Blu-ray home theatre, 1000watts RMS, 3D, BD, DVD, VCD, CD, MP3, DIVX PLAYBACK, HDMI upscalling, FM radion, USB play, Aux in, WiFi LAN

RO211 56 / TECH









Intel Core i7 2450M processor, 2.4GHz, 16GB RAM, 1TB HD, 2GB VRAM, 15.6-inch HD LE, Wi-Fi, Blu-ray

Seven-inch multi-touch display with In-Plane Switching (IPS), 16GB internal memory, free cloud storage, Wi-Fi, 7.5 hours of battery life





ACER ASPIRE S5 Intel Core i5-3317U,4GB DDR3,128 GB SSD,Intel HD Graphics4000,wireless bluetooth



Intel ULV Core i5 2467M processor, 4GB RAM, 128GB SSD, 13.3-inch HD screen, 1.3MP web camera

Nvidia Tegra 2 dual-core processor, Google Android 4.0, 16GB memory up to 32 GB, 1GHz processor with 3G, 10.1-inch WXGA touchscreen, Wi-Fi, 5MP camera





Intel Core i5 ,630QM processor, 4GB DDR3 RAM, 640GB HDD, 2GB DDR3 SDRAM, 15.6-inch LED HD screen

32GB, 9.7-inch LED backlit multi-touch display with IPS technology, dual-core Apple A5X processor, Wi-Fi and 4G, fivemegapixel iSight camera



HP DM4-3098 Intel Core i5-3317U, 1.7GHz CPU speed, 4GB DDR3 RAM, 500GB SSD, 14-inch HD screen, wireless, bluetooth U



32GB, 9.7-inch LED backlit multi-touch display with IPS technology, dual-core Apple A5X processor, Wi-Fi and 4G, fivemegapixel iSight camera



Intel Core i3 2, 630M processor, 4GB DDR3 RAM, 750GB HDD, 1GB VRAM, 15.6-inch LED HD screen


Intel Core i7 3317U processor, 1.9 GHz CPU speed, 8GBDDR3 RAM, 500GB HDD, 14-inch HD WLED screen

Intel core 13-23750M, 2.40GHz CPU speed,4GB DDR3 RAM,500 GB HDD,INTEL HD Graphics 3000(1GB), 3 in 1 card reader








Intel Core i5 2467M processor, 1.6GHz CPU speed, 4GB RAM, 64GB SSD, Intel HD graphics

7-inch HD display, Android Google Play, Quad core processor, WiFi, 16GB




Disclaimer: Prices quoted in the magazine maybe subject to change. Please check with your local dealer for current costs. Lists are not in any particular order.




Laser Jet printer, Print, scan and copy features, resolution of 2,400, 17ppm (pages per minute) black, 4ppm colour, air print, Wireless network

Directly connects to the Internet, provides wireless coverage without the need for a separate DSL modem

Stereo PC headset with in-line volume control, adjustable microphone, lightweight, great acoustics



64GB, 1GHz dual-core processor, seveninch LCD screen, 1GB RAM, dual cameras – 5MP rear and 3MP front


DELL S423INS-0347



Intel Core i7-3610QM, 2.3GHz CPU speed, 8GB RAM,1TB HDD, 2GB NVIDIA GT650M VRAM






WD MY BOOK ESSENTIAL 1TB, USB 3.0 and 2.0 compatible interface, WD SmartWare visual backup software, automatic, continuous backup

RO42 JANUARY 2013 / 57




35mm ultra wide-angle 20x optical zoom ,LEICA DC lens,full HD movie,3D, three-inch LCD,stabilizer


8.9MP, 30x optical zoom, 3-inch wide touchscreen, 16GB built-in-memory, full HD movie

SAMSUNG WB850F 16.2MP; 21x optical zoom;23mm wide angle, three-inch LCD screen, GPS

18.2MP, 10x optical zoom camera, 2.7-inch LCD, HD video recording, CMOS sensor, Optical SteadyShot

RO530 SONY HDR-XR260 8.9MP, Pixel Super Resolution technology, three-inch Clear Photo LCD, BIONZ processor, Optical SteadyShot stabilisation




OLYMPUS XZ-1 3-inch LCD screen stabilizer, 10MP, 4x optical zoom, full HD movie, art function


CANON LEGRIA HFR36 3-inch touchscreen LCD, 8GB built-in-flash, 3.28MP, 32X optical zoom, SD/SDHC/SDXC

FUJIFILM HS30 16MP, 30x optical zoom, 3-inch LCD, CMOS sensor, panoramic view U

10.1MP CMOS and DIGIC 5, 12x optical zoom, 3-inch LCD, Intelligent IS, High-speed shooting




SAMSUNG HMX-Q20 20x optical zoom, 5.3Megapixel, 3-inch LCD screen, HD movie,2hours 30minutes Battery ,smart auto





12 Megapixels,20x optical zoom, 3-inch LCD, smart auto,full HD movies, 25mm wide angle


16.3MP, 5X Optical zoom, 3.3-inch LCD touch screen. Full HD movie

70x enhanced optical zoom, , 2.7-inch LCD screen, Hdmovie,31.6mm wide lens,smart auto




RO127 Disclaimer: Prices quoted in the magazine maybe subject to change. Please check with your local dealer for current costs. Lists are not in any particular order.





18MP, 3.7fps shooting, 3-inch LCD, nine Auto-Focus points, full HD movie, 18-135mm lens

12MP sensor, 5fps, 35-point autofocus, 3-inch LCD screen, Full HD movie, 3D mode

18.1MP, 4.3FPS, Hybrid CMOS AF, 3.2-inch LCD screen, Full HD Movie, 18-55mm lens

24.2MP,4fps,3-inch LCD screen,11 AF point ,Full HD Movie,Live View,18-55mm Lens



58 / TECH









Touch, QWERTY key, 1.2GHx Pro, 8GB storage, 5MP camera, NFC, 3G, WiFi, A-GPS

android os4, 16GB storage upto 64GB, 8MP camera, auto focus, 3G, GPS, 1.9MP





4.3-inch super AMOLED Plus display, Android 2.3 (Gingerbread), 8MP camera with LED flash

AMOLED capacitive touchscreen, 8MP camera with Carl Zeiss optics, 16GB storage




Ios 6, dual core, 8MP camera, 1.2MP secondary camera, nano sim card, 16GB storage

4.3-inch Super AMOLED capacitive touchscreen, 8MP camera; Android OS (Gingerbread)






IPS LCD touch screen, 4GB internal memory, WiFi, Bluetooth, 5MP, OS Android, Dual core


Android Gingerbread smartphone; 12MP camera, 4.3-inch HD screen, 32GB memory



RO50 Handy speakerphone with built-in mic; backlit, touch panel controls; specially designed acoustic chamber



Bluetooth, FM radio, AUX in, 20w RMS





RO35 BOSE SOUND DOCK-10 iPod and iPhone dock, recharge and play, remote control, audio input

RO279 BOSE SOUNDLINK Works wirelessly with iPhone, Android, Blackberry, tablet or laptop, 30-foot wireless range

RO155 PANASONIC SC HC35 iPod/ iPhone dock station, USB, AUX in



Disclaimer: Prices quoted in the magazine maybe subject to change. Please check with your local dealer for current costs. Lists are not in any particular order.





Touchscreen, FM radio, photo viewer, 16GB

2GB, 8 hours of battery life, water resistant, 3 minutes charge for 60 minutes playback, light weight and comfortable

8GB MP4 player, supports MP3, WAV, and WMA playback, FM radio and FM recording, five hours battery support

8GB memory, Voice recording, MP3 and WMA playback, FM radio, touch screen, light weight








LG S-186C


Two-tonne unit; incorporates ECONAVI technology, Advance+ e-ion monitors changes in the degree of air cleanliness; features autocomfort

1.5-tonne split air-conditioner with virus and allergy-safe filter, four-way swing and jet cool feature, employs multistage tropical compressor

300L capacity, double ledoor, glass shelves



660 litres, four door, no frost, nano titanium cooling system, auto ice maker, quick freezer




1.5 ton, split AC, plasma, super jet, all aluminium heat exchanger, computerised dry mode operation, LCD wireless remote control, quiet operation

Window AC 1.5 Ton capacity, slim design, powerful output

RO365 SAMSUNG RT 81 CTBSP 810 Litres capacity, frost free, double door, adjustable glass shelves

RO220 N


LG PS- N55 OWPS Air purifier that works within 20sqm; sports a modern, elegant design; comes with washable carbon filter, easy filterchange system; touch control panel


HITACHI RAS-18CPX Split air-conditioner with Green Fin condenser, durable thanks to green rustresistant coating, employs Nano Titanium technology in its stainless steel filters

DAEWOO RF 420 375 litres, frost free, double door, bottom freezer, multi air flow





1.5-tonne split-type wall-mounted air conditioner, Self cleaning function, automatic 3mins safety control


662L, double door, plasmacluster ion technology, hybrid cooling aluminium panel, eco-friendly and long lasting LED lighting



Disclaimer: Prices quoted in the magazine maybe subject to change. Please check with your local dealer for current costs. Lists are not in any particular order.





10kg top loading, full automatic, stainless steel hole less tub, auto restart, LED display

10kg capacity, 1400rpm, ten wash programmes, child lock, super-silent, direct drive motor, energy savings, wash time control

11kg capacity, 15 wash programmes, 1,400rpm, steam wash, quick wash, language selection, six motion washer, and allergy care

8kg capacity, 1,400rpm, 14 wash programmes, delay end, Eco Bubble wash function, quick wash, child lock, diamond drum, time delay, durable ceramic heater








60 / TECH




BLACK AND DECKER MZ-3000PG 30L capacity, 800W microwave oven with 11 power levels, child safety lock, defrost settings, six auto menus, sports a fashionable design

SAMSUNG GE103MB 28L multi-function microwave oven with interiors finished with Ceramic Inside coating, easy to clean, Triple Distribution System heats food deeply and equally



1800W vacuum cleaner, bagless, HEPA washable filter, 300W suction power, dust container-full indicator

PANASONIC NN-C784MF 28L oven capacity, microwave with oven and grill, feather touch control, auto defrosts by weight, recipe store


DAEWOO KOC9N8T 29L microwave oven with stainless-steel housing, 900W output power, convection/grill function, 850W grill power, ten power levels, five auto cook menus


23L convection microwave oven, defrost, timer, 800 watts power


PANASONIC MC-CJ917 2300W standard vacuum cleaner, HEPA, antibacterial filter, quiet

RO46 SAMSUNG VCC-8780 2000W vacuum cleaner, bag less, remote control handle


RO43 LG MS2322D



SHARP R200 22L microwave oven with 800W microwave power, five one-touch instant action menus, three easy defrost menus, four-digit LCD, five power levels

Wet and dry vacuum cleaner

40L microwave oven with convection and grill, eight auto cook menu

RO31 LG VCA241HT 1400W bagless vacuum cleaner, 0.8L dust capacity, washable HEPA filter, innovative Cyclone System technology



RO33 Disclaimer: Prices quoted in the magazine maybe subject to change. Please check with your local dealer for current costs. Lists are not in any particular order.





Espresso, Cappuccino and Coffee maker, 1.8 litre water tank, 15 bar pressure, adjustable coffee strength

2.2L capacity, oil-free frying using Rapid Air technology, food separators, integrated timer, 1,425W power

Soup maker, can crush ice, smoothie maker, 1.8 litres capacity, 1000 watts power

1,400W power, ceramic coating, digital display, one spoon of oil for 1kg of crispy chips






JANUARY 2013 / 61




Has front and rear camera, cross control play, motion sensor


RO131 NINTENDO 3DS Built-in 3D Depth Slider to adjust intensity of 3D, built-in motion and gyro sensor


LOGITECH Z506 Delivers 500W of pure power to recreate perfect theatre-quality audio experience






RO37 Racing wheels and flight controllers simulate realism, Force feedback feature



GamePanel LCD keeps you informed of game stats, programmable G-keys



TURTLE BEACH Gaming headset, Inline amplifier, separate connecter for mic and pc lines


Integrated internal memory of 250GB, built-in WiFi (IEEE 802.11 b/g/n), 5.1 channel surround sound








Broken into three parts: the ‘Motion Controller’, the ‘Navigation Controller’ and the ‘PlayStation Eye Camera’

Fun activities with more than 18 sports to try, ranging from water sports like canoeing to ball games like basketball



LOGITECH STEERING WHEEL Playstation 3 and PC compatibility



RO29 Disclaimer: Prices quoted in the magazine maybe subject to change. Please check with your local dealer for current costs. Lists are not in any particular order.





Bahwan Electronics

Asset, Carrier, Ignis, Napro, Toshiba, Seiko, Casio, Titan, Sony Ericsson, Tempstar, Cooline, Corning, Print electronics, Dolphin, Benq, Ausonia, Daewoo, VIP, Dometic, Corby

Ruwi 24796629



MCC 24558062


Sanyo, Videocon, Fujitsu, Thomson, York, Yamaha, Canon, HAAS, AEG, Sure, Caravell, Gulf Star, Safari, Admiral, Francia, Mitsubishi, Marc Climatic, Vortice, Guntner, Zanussi , Ziegra Imesa, Bitzer, Manitowoc, Bremer, DitoElectrolux, Metro, Taylor, Costan

Qurum 24568806, Muttrah 24713138, Ruwi 24830919, Seeb 24422797, Shatti al Qurum 24693292


Al Gurg Home Appliances - Better Life

Terim, Fisher & Paykel, SMEG, Vestfrost, Wolf Power, Grundig



HiTec Centre

Boston Acoustics, Denon, Leica, Polk Audio

Azaiba 24497384


Jumbo Electronics

Sony, VAIO, Sony Professional Products, Blackberry, Supra, Midea Air-conditioners, Casio, Brother Sewing Machines, Acer, HP, Dyson, Gorenje

MBD 24818358, Al Araimi 24565845, QCC 24470529, Salalah 23291984


Al Khalili Technology

Fujitsu, Siemen, Coral Telecom, Honeywell, Epson, Camtron, Pyronix, SD3, Tripp-lite, Cummins, Schneider Electric, Sanyo, Sakar, Sterline, Sonicwall



Moayyed Integrated Enterprises

Daewoo Electronics



Muscat Air-conditioning and Electronics LLC

Sharp, Midea, General, Wansa, MDV

24796591, 24796202/31/40


Muscat Electronics

Daikin, Wansa, Ricoh, Chigo, Media, G-Hanz, Sony Professional Products, Lexmark, Hitachi

Ruwi 24702982, 24780407 Sohar 26845647, Salalah 23291617

24813408 / 24789542

Mustafa Sultan Electronics (MSE)

Haier, Philips, Nevica, Whirlpool, Haas, Universal, Westpoint, Urania, ROYXON

Al Khuwair 24636015


Oman International Electronics & Trading

Bose, NEC, JVC, Nakamichi, SONOS

Qurum 24565490 Connexions 24558529


Oman Modern Electronics

Sharp, OMEC

HO 24706004, Ruwi 24832891, Sohar 26840763, Sur 25544613, Salalah 23291405



Panasonic, Yamaha, Stanley, Black and Decker, GE, Aftron, Xper, Raymond Weil, Kolber, Westend, Westar, Alba, Maxima, HMT

Qurum 24564310, Ruwi 24833630


OMASCO - System Solutions




Oman Trading Establishment

LG, Bosch, White Westing house, Pearl, Prolux

Wadi Kabir 24811572, Al Khuwair 24479448, Ruwi 24831544, Ruwi MBC 24834162, Al Araimi 24561480, Seeb 24420570, Nizwa 25412216, Sur 25545107, Bani Bu Ali 25553387, Salalah 23295237, Sohar 26842397

24810522 / 24810156, 80075545


Fujifilm, Olympus, Hasselblad, Sigma, Manfrotto, Qurum 24565305, Al Lowepro, EPSON, Mitsubishi Electric, STEINER, Khuwair 24479296 Broncolor, Hama, Amano



Samsung, Technoflame

Ruwi 24593025


Shah Nagardas Manji

Kodak, Yashica, Cokin, Case Logic, Lexar, Noritsu, Durst, Bushnell, Eiki, Iriver, Steiner, Tasco, White Westinghouse, Igloo, Venus, Russel Hobbs, Addis, Noritake, Ocean, Wenger

Ruwi 24562656, Lulu Bausher 24593806, Nizwa 25410184

Technical Trading


Ruwi 24703515, Fax 24700010

If you would like to be listed, email:


Age Group

Full Name PO Box



Below 18







31-40 Above 40


Tick as applicable Omani Single Own LED TV DEENAr PrESS AND PuBLiShiNg PO Box 139, PC 102, Al Qurm, Sultanate of Oman O: +968 24696868, F: +968 24693569 E:

Own a car Online often

Terms and Conditions: Deenar Press and Publishing is not responsible or liable for any late, lost or misdirected orders. Once processed, the fee is non refundable. New subscribers will receive their first magazine commencing with the next issue published after the date that application and payment is received. You may also deposit the subscription fee to our account through BankMuscat CDM and send us a copy of the receipt along with the filled Subscription Form.

THE HIGHEST RANGE OF AUDIO PRODUCTS Experience the sound at Emax



Al Qurm: 24565305 | Zakher Mall Al khuwair: 24479296 |

TECH Issue 33  

Soulful Sound, January 2013

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