Panasonic Lumix DMC-G3
SLR’s have always been about size, whatever anyone tells you. great big lens poking forth. The new Micro Four Thirds system from Panasonic and Olympus offers a version of the old SLR but lacking the roomy mirror and light box that took up so much of the viewfinder. The Panasonic Lumix DMC-G3 is this summer’s upgrade whatever your kit. 15.8 million pixels don’t get much better than this. And for roughly £500 as well.
Writer: Stephen Armstrong
Samsung Series 9 laptop
Ok, so we’ve had the iPod killers, the iPad killers and the iPhone killers. See all those Apple corpses out there? Thought not. Here’s the next tournament contender, the Samsung Series 9, the Mac Book Air killer. It’s slightly thinner, slightly lighter, got a slug more memory (4GB vs 2GB) and is hewn from aircraft grade Duralumin and, like the Air, it avoids clunky hard drives so fires up like a dream. In fact, there’s pretty much nothing in. The question is -- are you Mac, or are you PC?
Motorola have been talking up their new Atrix as a laptop computer in a smartphone. This just might be true, albeit with a little help from its accessories. There’s still a 5MP camera with HD video, massive battery and -- with said accessories -- it really does transfer from a smartphone to a multimedia centre and netbook. SIM free models should hit £500 mark but it’s an Orange exclusive at the moment.
Kalkhoff’s Pro Connect S10 electric bike
Kalkhoff’s Pro Connect S10 electric bike has been topping every range for the past two years -- there’s a high-performance pedelec motor allowing you to hit 40 km/h, lovingly tooled with a variety of carbon parts to keep weight down, it’s the beloved leader of the pack. This summer, Kalkhoff upgrade still further with the faster, lighter, way more comfortable sportster version, the Pro Connect S10. A snip at £3,465.
Olympus LS-20 Linear PCM digital recorder
So you’ve got your Dictaphone. Maybe an interview here and there. Maybe a bit of memo taking. Not much HD movie shooting through, we’ll bet. Not much studio quality sound recording either. That’s because you don’t have the faintly Star Trek looking Olympus LS-20 Linear PCM digital recorder, which can do the lot. It makes your ’memo to self: novel about trees question mark’ seem kinda feeble huh?
Philips Cinema 21:9 Gold
Philips Cinema 21:9 Gold is the Top Trumps champion of TV sets -- aluminium, touch sensitive controls, Phillips patented Amblight that bleeds the picture onto surrounding walls, ’Easy 3D,’ for cheaper and lighter glasses, built-in WiFi to link with a smartphone or iPad, NetTV allows Facebook, Twitter and YouTube on to the screen... Out this summer, the price is still tbc but it’s definitely this summer’s blockbuster.
KEF Blade speaker
Concept Blade was KEF’s ’it’s so great but you’ll never own it’ riff on cutting edge technology announced two years ago -- KEF’s acoustic research department had complete freedom, no preconceptions or aesthetic restrictions, and no reliance on existing components. Here’s the affordable version -- the KEF Blade. Beyond state of the art and lighter than a smile. Available August for £20,000 SRP
Clock radio by Areaware
Clock radios. Remember them? Like art and science fusing they measured time and they played music. These days alarm clocks have been replaced by iPhones with their clanking xylophone sample ringtones. New York design collective Areaware miss those days so, like art, science and Steve Jobs fusing, Jonas Damon has created the Alarm Dock. Carved from sustainably harvested Beech wood, you can slot your phone or iPod into its curves and wake up to whatever you want. Right now, we’re leaping out of bed to podcasts from Radio Jai: the Buenos Aires Klezmer station -- oy caramba. $40 via the US website.
Plumen low energy light bulb
Plumen is the result of a little co-operation between Hulger and young British designer Sam Wilkinson. It’s antithesis of low energy light bulbs as we know them. Rather than hide its utilitarian limitations, Plumen 001 bursts forth as a thing of beauty in its own right.
The Tape Project
Any time the cats at the Tape Project expand their catalogue, it’s like a clarion call from a far off mountain top announcing the arrival of a victorious dawn. For several years now, the US reel-to-reel enthusiasts have been hauling out studio master tapes of jazz albums and transferring them on to reel-to-reel tape for enthusiasts and groovers. Series one and two included an eclectic spread from Robert Cray: False Accusations through Bill Evans; Waltz For Debby to Sonny Rollins Saxophone Colossus. Series three is out now and you’ve gotta have it: Lee Morgan, The Sidewinder; Otis Rush, Right Place, Wrong Time; Kurt Elling, Flirting with Twilight and Nat Adderly, Work Song to name just a few. You want a Revox a77 or an Otari MX-5050 to loop those spools. Thear Technology has what you need. Ask for Rod.