Sunday, July 24, 2011

Leica M9P vs Leica M9

I have a chance to try out the M9 Titanium and the M9P today, and I must say, they are very pretty cameras indeed.

Looking at the M8, M9, M9 Titanium and M9P, I personally do not feel that there is much difference. They are all well built, and look great.

The M9P's design does drop the red Leica dot on the front, and added sapphire glass to the rear, but does it really make any difference at US$1000 more?

I would say, the low grade 2.5" LCD Screen with 230k pixel resolution is simply disappointing for a S$11.4k camera. Adding sapphire glass does not increase resolution. Even the Fuji X100 has a 2.8" 460k pixel resolution LCD screen.

I would say, this Leica is a work of art, and it takes great photos. The price is in deed a little high, and I'm not sure if dropping the red dot and adding sapphire glass to the low grade LCD screen does make US$1000 of a difference.

-- Robin Low

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Wu Xia - Movie Review

Yes, its Donnie Yen again in another martial arts movie. Watching the trailer does not reveal much of the story, so it is fine to watch this following trailer. I thought it was a satire or a comedy at the start, but it quickly changed my mind.

I would say this movie is unlike any martial arts movie I saw, and I rather liked it. I will try my best not to reveal any plot in this review, but not knowing anything before watching this movie really did blew me away.

If you intend to watch this movie no matter what, I say, just go, and don't read any further, it might spoil the fun.

Director Peter Chan, someone whom I've not really take a lot of notice before really transformed the genre of martial arts movie. Set in 1917, the story starts slow with the life of Liu Jinxi (Donnie Yen), a simple paper maker is changed completely when he faced 2 thugs and some how managed to defeat them "by luck"

Then the story goes into a CSI style investigation when Xu Baijiu (Takeshi Kaneshiro) examines the death of the thugs and digs deeper and deeper in the investigation. At times, the deduction made by Baijiu may seem unreal, but more light sheds as the story continues.

When the investigation phase is over, Jimmy Wang Yu appears as the scary figure of Jinxi's past and the dark and creepy past of Jinxi starts to reveal. This movie then transforms into a fight fest as the spectacularly choreographed fight scenes changed the whole tempo of the story.

Cinematographers Jake Pollock and Lai Yiu-fai did a fantastic job of bringing in the 1917 village and town to life. Overall, the movie is well made, well edited, and very enjoyable to watch.

Although there is no "feel good" ending or the feeling of just giving a standing ovation when the whole movie ends, I still feel that the whole new way to a martial arts movie is told by this movie is something that people will be talking about in time to come.

If you are waiting for a great summer movie to watch, this is it!

Rating: 8.5/10

-- Robin Low

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Galaxy Tab on Gingerbread Android 2.3.3

On 5th of July, Galaxy Tab started rolling out Android 2.3 in many countries. However, I could not wait for this to come to Singapore and so I decided to flash the rom myself.

I have a Galaxy Tab from Singtel (Asian version) and this are the following steps I did to get Android 2.3.3 onto my Tab.

I followed instructions found on this page

Here are more details :
The firmware version of KIES is : P1000XXJPZ.
This rom is running Android 2.3.3
Firmware Version: 2.3.3
Versione banda base : P1000XXJPZ Base-band version: P1000XXJPZ
Versione Kernel : – se-infra@SEP-52 #2
Kernel Version: – if infra-SEP-52 @ # 2
Numero build : GINGERBREAD.XXJQ1
Hopefully this is not a joke and all the tabs will get updated to Android 2.3.3 (Gingerbread).

It is not very hard to install the rom, you will need:

Download Android 2.3 Gingerbread User Guide : here
Download Android 2.3 Gingerbread Firmware : here

Or you can download software here.

Download these files and place them in a folder together on your desktop.

1. Main Firmware (227MB) <------------- 2. Pit File (557b) <--------------------- http://www.thegalaxy...h&attach_id=156 3. dbdata file (1.92Kb) <----------------- http://www.thegalaxy...h&attach_id=157 4. Flashing Program (196.71K) <--------- http://www.thegalaxy...h&attach_id=158 0. Preparing to Flashing the firmware 1. Take the main firmware and unzip the file using winzip or another extraction program. When it unzips you will be left w/ a .tar file. This is the file you will need to flash. 2. Unzip ODIN V1.7. You will have several files in the folder. you will use the file called Odin.exe 3. Unzip the pit file. you will be left w/ a .pit file 4. Unzip the dbdata file and you will be left w/ a file named dbdata.tar. Take all those files and put them in a folder inside the main folder so they are in one spot and easy to find. 1. Flashing the Firmware 1. Double click ODIN.exe to run the program. 2. Make sure your tab to turned off. Hold the Power and Volume down button at the same time and it will have a android guy in a triangle w/ a shovel and hook it up to your computer. This is the download mode. 3. in the PDA section of odin place the main firmware .tar file in that section. 4. Place the .pit file in the pit section and make sure repartition is selected. 5. Hit start and it will flash the firmware. 2. Second Phase to flashing Firmware you tab will reboot after the firmware flashes. Shut it down. 1. Place tab in DL mode again and hook it up to your computer. Power button and Volume Down at the same time. 2. Place dbdata.tar into the PDA section in ODIN (DO NOT SELECT REPARTITION) 3. Hit start and it will flash the .tar file. 4. Shut down the tab. 3. Phase Three of Flashing Firmware We will be placing your tab into recovery mode. In Recovery Mode you will use the volume up and down keys to navigate and home key to select. 1. Hold Power and Volume up together. 2. Release Power after holding it for about 4-5 second and continue to hold the Volume Up button until recovery menu shows up. 3. Select wipe cache (When Done go to next step) 4. Select wipe data/factory reset. 5. Select reboot and you are done. You now have Android 2.3.3 Gingerbread. 4. Flashing of OPTIONAL rooted kernel GSM TABS ONLY This is to be done after all the steps above have been done. 1. unzip the CFroot file and you will have a .tar file. 2. Start the ODIN program 3. put the .tar file in the PDA section in ODIN (DO NOT SELECT REPARTITION) 4. Place your tab into DL Mode and hook it up to your computer 5. Hit start you will now have a rooted tab and ClockWorkMod recovery installed. ============================================================================ Version 2 of flashing Quick & Original ChainFire instructions For Those Who Know flashing (do this if you didn't follow the above tutorial only!) : Download the version "With bootloaders": <--- flash this one Procedure (ODIN !) - Download and extract the firmware zip - Download and extract the attached - Download and extract the attached - Flash the firmware tar as PDA, repartition enabled, use the attached PIT - After flash immediately boot into download mode again - Flash dbdata.tar as PDA (NO repartition) - After flash immediately boot into recovery mode - Wipe cache - Wipe data / factory reset ----------------------------------------------------------------- I've done it several times, and it works, but if you are not computer savvy, don't try, I'm not responsible if you bricked your G-Tab. ----------------------------------------------------------------- There are still further steps if you want to get your G-Tab online. You need to input the APN data for the 3G to work. In Singapore, I'm using Singtel, and here are the following information that finally worked for me and my Galaxy Tab. 1st APN -> IDEAS. There is a Green Light selected on this option
APN: e-ideas

Everything else is blank


APN - e-ideas
Proxy -
Port - 8080
Username - 65IDEAS
Password - ideas
Server - *
MMS proxy -
MMS port - 8080
MMC - 525
MNC - 01
Authentication type -
APN type - mms

With the above settings I am able to surf the web go to the Android Market and install stuffs everything is ok EXCEPT sending out MMS

The minute I edit the First APN to have the same settings as the second, I'm disconnected to the 3G network. I cannot surf the web at all, but can send MMS.


I'll review the Android 2.3.3 at a later date after using it for a while.

-- Robin Low

Saturday, July 09, 2011

Bus Stop Fail

This bus stop shelter does not shade you from the sun, nor does it shelter you from the rain.

This bus stop is located near Parkway Parade in Singapore.

It seems that there is always unnecessary construction going on in Singapore, and often, the result is worse than before.

-- Iron Bowl.