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Paul Ridden

Paul Ridden

While Paul is loath to reveal his age, he will admit to cutting his IT teeth on a TRS-80 (although he won't say which version). An obsessive fascination with computer technology blossomed from hobby into career before the desire for sunnier climes saw him wave a fond farewell to his native Blighty in favor of Bordeaux, France. He's now a dedicated newshound pursuing the latest bleeding edge tech for Gizmag.

Follow Paul:

— Electronics

Tiny Uamp turns your music-playing smartphone into a portable hi-fi

By - March 4, 2015 7 Pictures
The speakers on many smartphones can be painfully lacking in detail and bottom end, and really start to distort when the volume is pushed to levels guaranteed to annoy fellow commuters. Listening to music with the help of the built-in headphone jack will almost certainly offer an improved sonic experience, but high quality? Probably not. External headphone amps can help to increase the quality of mobile music devices, but (with some notable exceptions) these can add significant bulk to your pocket. A tiny new headphone amp named Uamp is making a bid for production on Kickstarter and, though small in size, its makers reckon that portable music lovers are in for a clearer, louder and richer listening experience. Read More
— Laptops

HP reveals multi-mode Spectre x360 notebook

By - March 1, 2015 4 Pictures
Hewlett-Packard has pulled back the curtains on what the company is calling its most premium and versatile PC yet. The HP Spectre x360 offers four usage modes for work, rest and play flexibility, its 13.3-inch screen is available at up to 2,560 x 1,440 pixel resolution and the 56 watt-hour battery is claimed good for up to 12.5 hours on a single charge. Read More
— Around The Home

Open source Mini-Farm Grow Box allows gardeners to grow greens in the home

By - February 25, 2015 4 Pictures
Texas-based consumer health advocate Mike Adams of non-profit organization Food Rising has developed a new soil-free, non-electric, home-based food grow system called the Mini-Farm Grow Box. The system doesn't require home gardeners to weed out invaders, there are no pumps, motors or complex parts to service and maintain, and it's reported to require about 1/20th of the water of conventional agriculture and about half the space of soil gardening. Read More
— Laptops

One Education officially reveals XO-infinity modular laptop

By - February 23, 2015 7 Pictures
Hot on the heals of a few leaked concept images and the best guess commentary that followed, Australia's One Education has now officially released some details on an upcoming modular laptop project. Claimed so simple that a 4 year-old child could put it together with ease, the XO-infinity will act as both laptop and tablet while allowing owners to swap out component modules over the course of their primary schooling. Read More
— Computers Review

Review: Meteor M2 multimedia stereo speaker system

By - February 23, 2015 7 Pictures
Among the raft of new consumer audio products that Samson Technologies took to CES last month was a desktop speaker system for computers, laptops and tablets. The company says that the Meteor M2 stereo speakers promise studio quality sound that breaks barriers in desktop audio at volumes that go "well beyond its compact size." We got our hands on a review system and have spent much of this month putting those claims to the test. Read More
— Music

Jane offers pickup switching by touch

By - February 20, 2015 6 Pictures
Even at first glance, there's something a little different about the Jane guitar from Switzerland's Pirmin Giger and Silvan Küng. It's not quite a single cut, nor is it a double cut. Its body is made up of three layers – an aluminum frame and two veneer wood panels. The back plate is not screwed in place, but is held in place by magnets and can be opened up using just a guitar pick. And its handmade humbucker pickups are selected using touch sensors rather than a 3- or 5-way pickup switch. It certainly looks like an appetizing combination that lives up to the brand name: Relish Guitars. Read More
— Urban Transport

EV4 four-wheel-drive electric scooter leans into turns

By - February 17, 2015 12 Pictures
Being able to lean into a corner has to be one of the greatest joys of riding two wheeled transport. Adding more wheels to a bike may increase stability and make it easier to ride, but it also strips that sublime pleasure away. Unless the multi-wheeler can tilt too. Poland's Jacek Skopinski has developed an interesting four-wheeled electric scooter called the EV4 that does just that. Read More
— Music

Paul Vo puts sustained harmony at your fingertips

By - February 13, 2015 6 Pictures
Back on 2012, Paul Vo and Moog revealed a working prototype of a device that took control of acoustic string vibrations to provide a harmonic soundscape behind whatever the player was picking. After making some necessary tweaks, Vo took the newly-named Vo-96 Acoustic Synthesizer to Kickstarter for the final push to production. The campaign was successful and the product is now available to buy. Vo has now revealed a handheld single string sustainer prototype that uses the same technology as the Vo-96. Say hello to the Vo Wand. Read More
— Music

DigiTech squeezes a backing band into Trio stomp

By - February 6, 2015 3 Pictures
Last October, Gizmag grooved along to what has to be the world's most reliable drummer – the BeatBuddy drum machine stomp. Next month, DigiTech will release a new guitar pedal called the Trio that crams a funky bass player into a pedalboard-friendly box alongside a virtual bin basher. The Band Creator pedal is reported capable of automatically generating bass and drum parts that match the rhythmic feel or chord progressions being belted out by the guitar player leading the power trio. Read More
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