Building notes, projects, and occasional rants

St. Gadget Day

Saturday was St. Gadget Day. I went to Porto to rent my old apartment. I was done earlier than I though, and by that time I got an SMS from Rui saying that he saw a Mac mini at a local store in Lisboa.

So I went to the local FNAC to see if I could spot one (first excuse). I also needed a new phone (second excuse) because my T68i had died that morning. The On/Off/No key did not work anymore. I had already talked to Rui about this, and settled on a K700i (also from Sony Ericsson).

So there I am, at FNAC. No Mac mini was found, but I saw the new (by portuguese standards) DSC-L1, a 4.1MegaPixels Cybershot. My previous older P1 was stolen some months ago and I was shopping around for a new one for quite some time.

The K700i was not available at that particular store, but the L1 was very nice. So I’m now the proud owner of a DSC-L1 Cybershot.

It’s very small, that was my first impression. It fits neatly in the palm of my hand. Picture quality is very good for my average consumer standards. My wife as a 5MegaPixel Cybershoot, I don’t remember the model, and I never liked it because it had to many controls and menus. This one is much simpler to use, which is nice to me. I read the manual from cover to cover, and I can memorize some things, but I don’t use it everyday, so I tend to forget about a lot of them. It becomes very important to have a simple interface.

Anyway, I was a couple hundred Euros lighter (DSC, plus a Memory Stick Duo Pro 256Mb; I also bought a Griffin-Technology iSqueeze), and still no phone.

So I went to another FNAC, in Gaia. And yep, they had it. And yep, I have it too now.

It’s a very nice phone. Nice and bright display, much improved over the T630 that I got at work (that I passed on to my wife). The camera (not that I use it much) is VGA quality (you can check the usual “Dead or Alive” pic), and it’s good enough. Sending MMS is very nice, because it sends them in the background, freeing the phone for other stuff.

The phone is not tied to any operator so I’ll be able to use it in the future (I’m changing networks in a month or two, more on that later), and that also means that I don’t get any stupid locked icons and backgrounds. I was able to configure it with my home-page in no time, and I was able to sync with my Powerbook with no problems. 10 minutes later I add all my contacts inside the phone. iSync totally rocks.

One thing new for me: I can use Bluetooth File Exchange (a Apple app) to browse the content of the phone and get the pictures. Very nice. I was not able to do this with my T68i, not that I needed though. But it’s nice to browse all the stuff inside the phone.

I haven’t tried GPRS with the Mac yet, but there is no rush (famous last words).

The games that come with the phone (not that important) are nice. I was impressed with the quality of a tennis game that was preloaded. It’s much better than Virtua Tennis that I got in my Nintendo SP. Impressive stuff.

Pairing the bluetooth HBH-600 headset was also trivial, but I haven’t got the setup exactly as I wanted. I can’t get the headset to be recognized all the time.

So, at the end of the day, I add a new camera and a new phone. Plus minor gadgets… It was a good day.

As I was leaving the store, I remembered that this particular FNAC has the Apple stuff in the first floor. Well, I still had a couple of minutes available, so I climbed the stairs.

And there it was, a 1.2Ghz Mac mini. What can I say? It’s really really good looking piece of hardware. I took it in my hand (singular really), it’s really light.

So yeah, Nuno lost the bet (I can’t find a reference to it in his site, though…) and he owes me lunch.