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All posts by Ian Osborne

  • AVM FRITZ!Box 3370 review: an excellent German router

    AVM’s new FRITZ!Box 3370 ADSL router doesn’t have as many features as the flagship 7390 model, but its wireless connectivity actually makes advances over its top-of-the-range stablemate. The 3370 lacks the 7390’s built-in DECT base station and physical telephony ports, and it doesn’t support simultaneous 2.4GHz and 5GHz connections, but its three data streams give a WLAN data transfer rate of to up to 450Mbps, up to 50% faster than the more expensive FRITZ!Box’s two streams. It proved more robust in our tests, and if your home network has blind spots your wireless router can’t reach, you might well find this one improves...

  • Apple iMac review: thin is in

    The iMac is Apple’s flagship desktop Mac. Since it was first introduced in 1998, this all-in-one computer has gone through eight significant redesigns, taking it from an egg-shaped, CRT-based machine in a polycarbonate casing to this third-generation thin aluminium-bodied computer. Since 2004, the iMac’s processor, graphics, storage, memory and other electronics have been housed behind the screen, and this year’s release is no exception. Where the 2012 iMac makes a radical departure from its predecessors is in its size. It retains the screen dimensions used in the previous generation, with the options of a 27-inch or 21.5-inch iMac, as reviewed here. But...

  • Apple Mac mini review: a step forward, but not a giant one

    The Apple Mac mini has long been the cheapest way to own a Mac. Since its introduction in January 2005, the small form factor desktop Mac has offered a low-cost alternative to the all-in-one iMac or the high-end Mac Pro. Although it’s sold without a keyboard, mouse or screen, everything else you need is in the box. It’s internet-ready, through Ethernet or wireless N, and comes with OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion and all its bundled apps pre-installed. The 2012 generation Mac mini is based on an aluminium unibody design. It’s available in two models. The cheaper one has a 2.5GHz dual-core Intel Core i5 processor...

  • Brother MFC review: an innovative A3 printer

    This new multifunction printer has a twist. Specifically, it has a 90-degree twist. Instead of feeding the paper through the printer in portrait mode, with the short edge emerging first, the Brother MFC-J4510DW turns it sideways so it prints in landscape orientation. This offers several advantages over the more traditional setup. It can print on A3-sized (11 x 17-inch) paper by taking the page through the printer short end first. A3 pages have to be hand-fed, one at a time through the manual feed slot at the rear of the printer, so it’s not suitable for heavy-volume A3 printing. Instead, think...

  • MacBook Pro 13-inch with Retina display review

    We can’t say it came as a surprise. A 13-inch version of Apple’s 15-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display has been rumoured since its larger stablemate was first released in the summer, and it seemed a pretty obvious move anyway. Unveiled during Apple’s October keynote, the 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display proved to be exactly what we expected; a smaller version of the 15-inch model, with the same innovations and departures from the regular MacBook Pro form factor. Thankfully, it’s also exactly what we wanted. The Retina MacBook Pro is a new take on the notebook, breaking with the traditional MacBook Pro design in favour...

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