Electronics

by Pamela Price

Review: Epson Expression Photo XP-950 Small-in-One Printer Is A Printing Game-Changer

With any form of technology, finding the right product that is easy-to-use, navigate and has a long life span is not exactly a piece of cake. That goes for computers, phones, tablets and especially printers. Ever since my first Brother printer, it’s been a touch-and-go experience. I’ve used several different brands and have struggled with each one having the same universal issue: paper jamming. That is until I discovered the Epson printers. In the past, we’ve reviewed their Workforce All-In-One. This month, we introduce their high-performance Epson Expression Photo XP-950 Small-in-One. Not only does it print beautiful photos with rich colors and lines, but it also serves as a great office product. Not too large, the design is black and sleek. The setup was quick (seven minutes), with an easy wi-fi connection to my PC. I first noticed that there were two tray openings, in the front and in the back. This gets rid of the headache if a piece of paper gets stuck. On top is a thin flap which lifts to reveal the scanner plate. Loading the 6 Claria® Photo HD six-color ink cartridges is painless, the only issue there is the cost of multiple cartridges, rather than just the standard black and color. But each ink shade is meant to create true-to-life skin tones in photos. Now for the printing, the Expression’s touch-screen is a nice addition as it allows you to choose your print options and automatically open the tray for printing. For photos, you can either insert a memory card or print from your computer/laptop. We recommend using Epson’s glossy photo paper for the best quality. Compared to other printers, the color is extremely rich and eye-popping, whether it’s text or an image. Photo sizes print up to 11” x 17.” While other printers take several minutes to print photos, the Expression can print a 4” x 6” image in about 10 seconds.

Other features include:

Epson Connect, which allows you to print and scan from anywhere using the Epson Creative Print mobile app, Epson Email Print, Epson iPrint™ mobile app, and  Epson Remote Print.
Auto Photo Correction and red-eye removal, with or without a computer
High-quality scanning up to 4800 dpi
Smudge, scratch and water resistant photos to share photos immediately after printing
Eco-friendly features, including ENERGY STAR® qualified and RoHS compliant
This is one of the most efficient printers I’ve used in years. It’s worth the purchase and investment for your small business or home office! Pricing: $349.99
For more info visit: www.epson.com.

Continuing with the theme of photo printing…

Polaroid’s Socialmatic Camera

Polaroid has launched something petite and fun: the Socialmatic camera, which is the first Wi-Fi enabled camera in their line.  A collaboration between Polaroid and Socialmatic, this mini-camera has a 12Mp Frontal Camera, 2Mp Rear Camera, LED Flash, 4.5” Touchscreen with 4GB Internal Storage, Stereo Speakers, Bluetooth, 2”x3” Zink Instant Printer, etc. You can post your photos on Socialmatic™ PhotoNetwork and/or share on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter or send by Email or MMS. Want to print your image? It’s instant. Just pull off the auto-adhesive strip and share. Every user and photo has a personal QR code, allowing you to scan the code. Say goodbye to “Hey, can you text me that photo you took?”

http://www.social-matic.com/site/

When it comes to new fitness/health gadgets, there are a lot of competing products in the market for those who want to keep track of their exercise plans and food intake.

Fitbit’s Force Wireless Activity & Sleep Wristband

Ever wondered if you’re getting the right amount of sleep or exercising enough during the day? Fitbit is the latest in exercise technology. They have several options, from the Wireless Activity Tracker, which tucks into clothing and the Flex Activity Wristband. The Force tracks everything and shows your activity. The band uses accelerometer and altimeter advanced technology to track the steps you’ve taken, distance traveled, calories burned, stairs climbed and active minutes throughout the day. And it doesn’t stop there. When you’re snoozing, the Force monitors your sleep and can wake you up with a vibrating alarm. That sounds like the epitome of a multi-tasking gadget. The band syncs with your computer, iPhone and select Android devices. For pricing go to: http://www.fitbit.com

TellSpec Food Scanner

They’re calling it a ‘clean food revolution.’ TellSpec is a new gadget that can change lives, especially for those who have food allergies. What is it? In layman’s terms, it’s a small handheld scanner which can read the ingredients in your food. Gluten, nuts, sugar? TellSpec is supposed to tell you the truth. It brings together spectroscopy and a unique mathematical algorithm, which beams a light at the food, measures the reflected light with a spectrometer, and sends the data to your smartphone, computer, or tablet. The servers categorize the information you need to know about your food: Calories, Carbs, Fat, Trans Fats and much more. Talk about science! The TellSpec comes in black, red, white, turquoise blue or green. Prices vary, starting with one year of free unlimited food analysis. For pricing visit: www.tellspec.com

In the tech world of storing information….

Livescribe Echo Smart Pen

For journalists like us, this is perfect, or for anyone who needs to take notes in a meeting. Livescribe’s Echo Smart Pen may look small, but it stores a lot. This 2GB model can hold an impressive 200 hours of audio. The pen’s microphone can capture clear and crisp sound, whether you’re in a classroom or at an interview. It has a 3.5mm jack which fits your earphones to enable binaural recording. Talk about lasting forever, the pen has a replaceable ink tip where the cartridge can be removed. Once you’re done recording, the micro-USB connector transfers the notes and audio to your computer. We’ll never leave home without it.

http://www.livescribe.com