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Harmonic Cacophony

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Everything posted by Harmonic Cacophony

  1. Harmonic Cacophony

    Kogan Agora Quad Core

    I have needed a new phone for a while and decided to get one of these. At only $200, at the least it would be a passable interim phone, and at best a great phone for a low price. Got it today, and it seems excellent for the price. Build quality seems perfectly decent at this price range. It's very light, which I'm not sure I like, but it certainly won't induce any fatigue holding it, nor will it pull down your pants. My micro scales tell me it's 154 grams, compared to my iPod 4 at 102 grams. Somehow the iPod feels heavier, probably because it's a smaller device. The five inch screen is definitely a lot more real estate than the iPod's 3.5 inch, but doesn't feel much larger to use. I remember using a Galaxy S3 and it felt ginormous, though the Agora does not. This model of iPod was known for being razor thin but the Agora doesn't feel much thicker in the hand. I like the soft rubber backing on the phone, one of my main problems with my iPod was the shiny chrome back which was indeed its downfall - slid off my leg and smashed the screen. One of the first things I did after setting up the phone was to check out Youtube. Automatically logging me in with my google account, I watched the first video on my subscription list. 720p youtube looks excellent on the Agora's 720p screen. Very impressive for $200. The volume can be driven to painful levels, but this is using earbuds that often blow my head off (they were like $6 from Coles but are the loudest earbuds I've ever used). I haven't bothered to test the included handsfree earbuds. I just watched a Youtube vid and it threw an ad at me. Can you install adblock on android devices? A quick search of the app store tells me probably not. Android version is apparently 4.2.1. That doesn't mean much to me. There are no updates and the Kernel version was installed on Aug 24 so that's pretty recent. I can't find any Kogan-related software stuff on the phone. I haven't used a Nexus device but I'm guessing this is pretty close to stock Android. The default vibration when typing does feel rattly and cheap. A good thing I always disable this on devices. General operation of the phone seems very fast and fluid. Much better than my iPod which is getting clunkier as it gets older. I'll install a beefy game of some sort soon and see how it handles that. Using the main Google search bar seems to result in it crashing. 'Unfortunately, Google search has stopped'. (Ironically) Googling this issue, it looks like a very common one across all devices. I hit the voice search thing on the bar accidentally, causing me to say 'shit', which it instantly recognised and tried to search, and then crashed. So it's really good at recognising what you want to search for before it completely fails. I just did a Quadrant benchmark on the phone with around a 4000 point results Not very impressive, compared to the Galaxy S4s 12,000 and the Note 3s 23,000! This is probably due in part to the Agora's 1GB of RAM vs 2 and 3 for the Samsungs. However the Kogan is only $200, around a third the price of the S4 and around a quarter the price of the Note 3. I'm listening to its FM radio on headphones as I type this. It seems to do the job, and is a feature my iPod was lacking, as do many phones. Apparently the phone can only take a 32GB card but I put a 64GB in there and it's working fine. I set it as the main write drive which will be necessary as the phone is only 4GB, its major downfall. I don't use many apps so hopefully I won't run into issues with this. If I can lump on a bunch of my music and a few recent TV episodes, this phone will completely replace my iPod, depending on quality of the audio apps. I put on an album of music and the default music player seems well-equipped enough at first glance. As does the video player, though installed VLC out of instinct. Interestingly, the default video player would play a 720p .MKV but only the video, no audio. VLC played the audio too. Cranking the speaker may be a little disappointing, it's easy to comfortably talk over it at full volume. I'm not sure how this compares to other phones, but I won't be using the speaker often anyway. I put in my old (really old) Telstra SIM and texted a mate. Worked without a hitch. The specs say it takes a smaller SIM model but this is a full sized one as used by all phones 5 years ago. Haven't made or received any calls yet, but I almost never do anyway so I don't care. I haven't played with the camera much yet. It's an 8MP one on the back and who cares on the front. I'll take some pics soon and see how it goes, but it doesn't really concern me as I own a nice P&S camera, and this seem fine for a $200 smartphone. There's a whole bunch of different shooting modes, not sure how useful most of them are. I'll also update with battery usage info.
  2. Harmonic Cacophony

    Google Nexus 5

    Ugh that sucks. Don't they realise people want to actually store stuff? It's not as if storage is expensive, why not have 100GB phones and make storage a moot point? My Creative MP3 player from like 2004 had 32GB.
  3. Harmonic Cacophony

    Post Your Latest Real Life Purchase!

    Why don't give Logitech a call?
  4. Harmonic Cacophony

    A Commentary on Piracy

    It sounds to me like most of us would use a Netflix service if it was available to us, and identical to the American version. Most Americans seem to use it just out of convenience. I would use it, knowing I can effortlessly plug in whatever I'm looking for and start watching all of it then and there. No need to mess around with torrents and what have you, even though that usually is a simple process. And for stuff that isn't on Netflix (though it sounds pretty comprehensive), there's always good old piracy to fall back on. I remember going to netflix.com years ago only for it to tell me it's not available here. It still has an identical page now. I'm guessing we don't have access to it because the rights for shows and movies are blockaded by the likes of Foxtel. The same reason you can't watch a Colbert Report clip on the official website, instead being forced to go to the unbelievably ugly Comedy Channel .au website for some shitty old clips. Re: digital price gouging, Steam can be pretty bad. iTunes doesn't seem too bad. I just compared the final Breaking Bad season on US iTunes site here and the local version in the iTunes program. US price is $22.99US for the season. AUS price is $24.99. Not sure if that's AUD or not, but assuming it is, the US price equals $24.50AUD, just 50 cents off.
  5. Harmonic Cacophony

    Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

    It's when the network gets out of the way that his shows get good. Anyway Melinda May is reason enough to keep watching SHIELD, she's a badass http://i.imgur.com/BL2FM1c.gif
  6. Harmonic Cacophony

    Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

    Nice appearance at the end there. I'll stick with it and wait for the usual pick up in quality towards the end of the season. Might hold off and not watch it week to week though.
  7. Harmonic Cacophony

    EB Games Expo 2013

    I didn't know EB Games ever did an expo
  8. Harmonic Cacophony

    A Commentary on Piracy

    I'm just noticing something about my own piracy habits, in that I almost NEVER pirate games anymore. It's just so easy to grab them on Steam (or elsewhere and get the Steam code) for a pittance and not have to mess around with cracks and mounting and serials and whatnot. Especially with today's model of gaming with constant updates and strong online interaction in most games, it's way more of a hassle to pirate these days. Also, Steam's method of downloading and installing is so damn streamlined and simple, you'd be mad to go back to the old disc system. I used to pirate most of my games at LAN parties because I didn't have adequate internet to download an entire game at home. That was when I could be bothered playing games a lot and wanted to play the latest games. Now I'm happy to wait a year and get it in a Steam sale. I would still pirate software, but there's not much I really use that isn't freeware anyway. Hardly Normal actually does a lot of online sales, though I'm not sure where they're trying to go with it. Basically all the deals are well below cost (one that particularly stuck out to me was a model of Canon DSLR being consistently sold WAY below cost for some reason) and shipping only ever seems to come up at around $5 when it obviously costs a whole lot more to ship someone a box with an Xbox in it. I guess it's them trying to gain a foothold as an online contender.
  9. Harmonic Cacophony

    A Commentary on Piracy

    I have always been a big pirater, but I have also been a big customer of the things that I like. I also spread a lot of word of mouth among friends and family which leads to more views and in turn more people watching after their word of mouth has spread etc. I've pirated terabytes of data, everything from movies to music to comic books. But I've spent a lot more money in doing so had I never bothered to consume any of it at all. There's a big misconception in the pirated industries that one pirated file = one lost sale. No, chances are that person wouldn't have bothered purchasing had there been no option to pirate and check it out. And after that person has pirated a whole TV season, loved the show, talked about it online and with friends, bought the box set and is now a happy customer, piracy has been a win-win for everyone involved. Even if the pirate didn't bother to spend any money, they'll be more likely to in future as opposed to completely oblivious, and their pleasant experience can lead to others' eyes on the show. On the other hand, if a person pirates a few episodes, and doesn't like the show, then they're spared the cost of spending $40 on discs they don't want, and the industry isn't rewarded for producing something that person didn't end up wanting. Out of curiosity, I just had a look at the TV section of the iTunes store for the first time. You can get the final season of Breaking Bad in 720p for $25 or in SD for $20. That's pretty damn good, considering a DVD or Blu-ray costs a lot more, and comes out months after the show is over, and a lot of people don't want to bother with physical media anymore. The Season Pass also lets you pay your money before the whole season has aired and the episodes download automatically as they come out. Very convenient. I'm not sure of the release schedule but the final episode only aired a few days ago US-time and it's there for download, not sure when it appeared. I clicked on the final episode and it gave me a 30 second clip playing full screen then and there. For the average person just wanting to keep up with a new show on their laptop, this looks like a really good option, I'm surprised to say. Every season of Breaking Bad is available in this way. Agents of SHIELD has a Season Pass available, at a higher $40 presumably from the higher amount of episodes in the season. I'm not confident enough in the show to put money on it yet to try this out, plus $40 is about blu-ray money which I'd prefer, with all the accompanying special features, commentaries, and higher quality. I see this as a much better model than randomly tuning in to broadcast television, with networks relying on bullshit magical ratings to guide their decisions. It's also better than having to pay for a $100+ subscription television service just so you can get HBO to watch Game of Thrones. Paying $30 for all the episodes of a show you actually want to watch as it's airing is an excellent way of judging actual viewers, without punishing them with ads and selling them a bunch of shit they don't want. Definitely steps in the right direction.
  10. Harmonic Cacophony

    Device for Old Man?

    Aside from any concerns about suitability, the Asus Zenbooks are pretty much the sexiest pieces of tech ever, and I don't even like Asus
  11. Harmonic Cacophony

    What are you playing at the moment?

    All my search results are coming from the 360 back in June so I guess you just got lucky
  12. Harmonic Cacophony

    What's on your mind?

    Search here for whatever issues you have http://www.youtube.com/user/sanfranciscocrossfit He's one of the best physios in the world. He also has a pretty comprehensive book if you don't want to go trawling youtube videos. You mentioned hip stuff, there's plenty of those Get on a basic strength routine as well and you'll make good improvements pretty quickly. Once you learn to do a front squat your posture will be better than most people's. Size comes from strength. Anyone who has any size has spent a lot of time squatting, benching, deadlifting etc before focusing on the curls for the girls. You have to bake the cake before you can put on the icing. Lordosis is common, you likely have useless hips and glutes as a result of sitting causing your back to collapse. Probably have thoracic and cervical issues too from sitting and looking at screens. Doing a whole bunch of mobility stuff like in the video above is a great idea, but you'll get massive improvement just from actually using all that musculature
  13. Harmonic Cacophony

    What are you playing at the moment?

    Yeah if it keeps doing that stuff I'll stop playing til they release updates. It's still in early access or whatever. But from googling various issues it seems like nothing's changed since it came out on Xbox back in June.
  14. Harmonic Cacophony

    Where are the 120hz IPS monitors?

    Plenty of them in Korea http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/New-YAMAKASI-Ca...=item20d53fd1a6
  15. Harmonic Cacophony

    What are you playing at the moment?

    Just got another bug, started a mission where I have to go with a guy to kill some zombies. But he just stands there. If I go to towards the area myself the game tells me to go back and get him. There's no way for me to coax him along. He even stands there getting chewed on by zombies. I found a youtube vid showing how you can shunt NPCs along by walking into them, and pushing them through the house gate or door can trigger the AI into working again, but this didn't work for me. It would probably only work if I shunted him to the location myself but that would take hours. And the game doesn't save mid-mission so I played about half an hour's worth for nothing.
  16. Harmonic Cacophony

    What are you playing at the moment?

    Arg just had my first character die because I don't know what B is. A feral zombie jumped out of nowhere (no dot on the minimap) and started clawing at me. Told me to press B to get him off. Mashing every button wasn't working so I hit escape and alt tabbed to google it. This site told me it was hold right click and tap space http://www.incgamers.com/2013/09/play-stat...he-control-list All right click did was weirdly zoom in on the zombie and I got clawed to death. I think he was only a fairly low level character, I saw his Cardio tick over to level 2 a few minutes earlier. The only character I don't want to lose is Marcus because he was played from the start and is pretty highly levelled. It was annoying though because I had just got to the area I was supposed to find plastic sheeting to build a bloody library, only a few hundred metres from home. The AI seems to have stopped working properly, my house just got attacked by two hordes at once and the rest of my team just stood around doing nothing. Normally they're popping off headshots before I can even get close. Coming up on a 'survivor in distress' or whatever has them just standing casually while being swiped at by five zombies that I have to spam to death. Also I called in a scavenger run on some food a long way from home and she bloody RAN there when there's four cars outside home.
  17. Harmonic Cacophony

    Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

    Judging by these synopses of the upcoming episodes, it looks like the show will be focusing on Coulson fairly heavily and building a backstory. Episode 2: While in Peru on a case with the team, Agent Coulson runs into someone from his past. Episode 4: A mysterious female thief's true identity stands to ruin Coulson.
  18. Harmonic Cacophony

    Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

    Yeah, the only real loss in Avengers is now negated, and Coulson can't really go topping the thing that got him 'killed' But he's probably just a robot or clone and Coulson really is dead, as evidenced by 'Tahiti' and 'do you think we should tell him?'. Still, getting seriously wounded and Fury telling the Avengers that Coulson is dead in order pull them together is definitely something that would happen, creating a perfect clone that must cost billions does not, unless there is something VERY special about Coulson. One other way-out scenario is that he's a shapeshifter who's been made to believe he is Coulson. Brainwashing a superhuman would have to be easier than building a new Coulson.
  19. Harmonic Cacophony

    Half Life 3 Revealed

    Wow took me a while to realise you can click anywhere and it will give you a full 360 from there too. Looks like the tunnel goes on forever. Wonder how long it takes to get stuff like this.
  20. Harmonic Cacophony

    Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

    That's not what the show is about. From an interview with Joss I read yesterday I also found this part interesting So it sounds like Marvel is happy to let stuff happen and not get in the way. ABC sounds like typical suit harassment as I suspected. It feels as obvious in this pilot as it did in the Dollhouse pilot which Fox forced them to reshoot.
  21. Harmonic Cacophony

    Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

    I think they were just trying to keep it light in the pilot, it will probably and should definitely get darker. I can't think of anything Whedon's done that doesn't get fairly heavy and dark. He's known for killing off characters, though here unfortunately he's brought one back. Which is another thing that makes for a pretty crap start; negating a loss from Avengers. Though he's likely not the real Coulson. For cameos, I'd say Fillion is almost a certainty, with both SHIELD and Castle being on ABC.
  22. Harmonic Cacophony

    Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

    Some spoilers in the following post, nothing major though I don't think. Can't be bothered covering everything in green. Yeah I was a bit disappointed, it just felt like another hero team show like Alphas. The network clearly wants a weekly procedural they can repeat forever, same as the start of Dollhouse, which was pretty bad. I do have hopes that SHIELD can become better once the network forgets about it, the way Dollhouse did once it stopped being 'Eliza Dushku plays a different character every week'. Everyone Whedon works with is highly talented and capable of producing brilliant television. SHIELD has the potential to become that. I think it has it's work cut out for it becoming more than good. But as you mention, casting is already a problem. You've got Handsome McBlanderson as who I'm assuming is the main or almost main character. His journey is obviously to become less of a buttoned down protocol-following superspy and learning to be more of a human being. Already romantic interest thrown up with hacker girl. There'll be some will they-won't they there. Hacker girl seems like a character we'll see a lot of, being the outsider, with everyone else being SHIELD and knowing what's going on. She changed her tune WAY too quick from being unlikely hacktivist to trusting the government. Her character type annoys me, super pretty who is an awesome hacker because she says she is. Not sure if she's in the biz because of prior involvement with super people or she's just interested becaused super people are interesting. Coulson getting spy man to spill 'level 7 info' to her was reckless. The two nerds appeared and got to work with barely an introduction. There's always a high speed tech-babbler who makes things happen after a suitably tense amount of time. Here we've got two of them, clearly for comic relief. I cringed when they started inspecting the crime scene with the flashy flying bots. I can see them being fun characters but who knows if we'll ever care about them. Ming Na is in bloody everything. Some pretty cool moves she had taking out that guy though. I like Coulson's character, though I'd really like some backstory. He seems way too lighthearted and jokey to be given such a serious assignment. I'd like to see how he became competent enough to be in charge of hero finders/heroes. It's clear from the Tahiti stuff that he is a robot/clone/etc. Not sure if he or Cobie Smulders/Robin from HIMYM will be around much from here on. J August Richards/Gunn from Angel looks like he might be sticking around. I'm guessing his role will be to tangle with other supers and give them the 'we're the same and I'm trying to help you' speech. His journey will be to learn what it means to become a true hero, or whatever. I'd like to see a real presence from the bad guys, not just an assassin whom I mistook for the main spy guy. That will come. I'm guessing they're going to be related to Hydra somewhere along the line, scientists working on the super soldier serum. Hydra gives us a bunch of cool looking soldiers to beat up/shoot, and cool looking villains to be in charge of them. Not sure if Fury will be showing up. I thought he'd at least show up for a few seconds. I'll definitely keep watching, I just hope it makes it past the network interference stage. Apparently there's going to be 22 episodes in the first season, which is a lot, and ensures a lot of weekly throwaway filler episodes that sow a few seeds of underlying plot, and probably the last couple of eps bringing that to the forefront, the way most shows do. Oh, I thought it was pretty cool when Sheppard Book showed up!
  23. Harmonic Cacophony


    Ugh. Sounds good if you're in Japan on gigabit maybe...
  24. Harmonic Cacophony

    What are you playing at the moment?

    Yeah I knew about the controller thing but a quick google told me exactly what I've experienced; keyboard works but it's pretty dodgy. Spawning definitely sounds messed up then, I don't think I've ever entered a building that didn't have plenty of zombies in it, around it, and next door to it.
  25. Harmonic Cacophony

    Breaking Bad S5

    Brock's mum getting killed was pretty bad, she had nothing to do with any of it, and had already lost her little brother to being shot by drug dealers selling blue meth. Most bad stuff on the show happens to people who deserve it or have at least chosen to put themselves in harm's way. Todd and co killing an innocent and threatening a child (two children!) means their shit is going to get fucked up. And yeah, it sucks everyone thinks Walt killed Hank (because he said he did), when he was trying his hardest to save him. I think it's a fitting punishment that not only did he fail to save Hank but now he'll be remembered as a treacherous DEA brother (in law) killer as well.