all about the Galaxy Camera

ok, so kor happened to get his hands on one as a demo/testing unit, I suppose he has to do reviews on it too and test it out. But since I chanced upon it after I got back from work, here eet ees! =D

front_view

It’s actually pretty large, but doesn’t feel too heavy. Which is surprising.

camera_mode

The camera mode functions are almost like my S100, with PASM modes and a default auto mode. Although I have to admit seeing the rotary dial for the customized options made me want to rotate the lens on the outer part of the body, but sadly that’s not movable. Adjustments are done via touchscreen by scrolling the dial up or down.

The settings for things such as focus points and grid guides are pretty useful too for camera newbs like me, and it also has different shoot modes and speeds (maybe for people who are into the Muybridge-style series of shots) so that in the plethora of shots you take within a split second, there will be at least one that turned out okay-ish. Jump shots everywhere! =D

video_playback

I like the playback bar, it’s unobtrusive, and the glowy blue color is quite nice.

android_os

Since it’s fitted with Android, it’s possible to upload directly from the device onto whatever social media i.e. Facebook, Instagram, you know the drill. What’s neat is that you can also share via ChatON, dayumn man that’s cool imo. And the picture quality is quite good. A little washed out at times, but I didn’t exactly fiddle with all the settings.

What I like also is that I could apply filter onto the photos, and instantly share from there. And if I was really being anal about it, I can still use custom apps like Pixlr-o-matic to prettify my pictures before sending them out. =D

The OS was quite smooth, I haven’t encountered any force kill while using the camera app. Which is a great thing, haha Android users should know what I mean by this. And it’s response time is quite fast too, so it doesn’t feel like I’m using my Nexus S (okay, so it’s aged quite abit).

bottom_slots

At the bottom slot is a reaaallly small slot for the MicroSD card, a SIM card and a battery, which kinda looks like the one they fit onto a Galaxy Note 2. What’s nice though is that on the battery cover there is a small panel to gain direct access to the HDMI jack.

front_with_zoom_and_flash

Here’s the view with the zoom out (ready for a picture? ;D) and the flash, which is rather bright but not overpowering.

More details about the Samsung Galaxy Camera here.

kurohako

heee an update on project kurohako aka. shirohiro 2.0!
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Part I: Gathering of Parts

image

This image was.. a proud accumulation of aaaalll the parts! XD It was such an adventure to go get it. Let’s begin the storytelling. XD

Reeis was kind enough to teman me for the day as we shopped for parts – our journey took us to the following places (in order)

  1. Lowyat Plaza – We were here mostly to see if we could get some cheaper prices, and hopefully get everything at the same spot. So we started off at a leisurely pace, browsing from store to store.. mostly asking for prices of the processor and asking if they had the mobo I wanted.I think I must have surprised alot of them because:

    #1 there was a girl asking about parts to build a box, not asking about a ready-assembled one
    #2 wtf what ITX mobo? Not ATX? You sure? Which maker? What processor are you planning to use with this?

    At this point (maybe 1.5 hours later) I was going all “bitch please, I know what I want. I just want to know if you have it or not.” =PI guess I kinda enjoyed seeing their confused faces, I need to do this again.. but maybe not so soon in the future unless I’m getting my graphics card.

    Bought from ViewNet:

    • 120GB SSD
    • 2TB SATA HDD
    • 2x4GB RAM
    • i5 3750k

     

  2. Ampang – Next stop, to pick up the casing. Reeis is a pretty decent navigator, all the wrong turns turned into alternate routes (except for that one random stretch with a crazily steep uphill slope even I dare not risk Wanda on it – it was nearly a 45-degree incline!!)

    As we were nearing the place, we’re like “How the heck do we get to the front of the apartment?! There is no frigging entrance!” So we called the guy, and he says “Ah, it’s (the entrance) actually in the middle of the row of shoplots” and Reeis yells a triumphant “I TOLD YOU SO!” XDXDAnyway.. we had to wait maybe 10mins or so before the guy comes out with my beloved casing! XDXD The most exciting part of my purchase imo (mostly cause of the roadtrip that it required just to *reach* this place)

    Bought from DotaTech: SGO6

  3. Pandan Indah – Ah, our last stop for the day. Also the most important stop of the day – without this, I can’t even begin to assemble kurohako!

    The trek from Ampang to here actually wasn’t too far, haha and it reminded me alot of the time Novi and I were sending Ivana home, cause it was rather nearby (or some of the roads/highways looked rather familiar!)Upon reaching the shop, both the guys in the shop give us a good look (trying not to be too surprised, I guess) and while the junior guy was processing the payment, the senior guy goes “Hmm.. it’s actually quite rare to see girls wanting to assemble their own PCs.”*cue moment of nerd pride here!*

    He also asked if I was planning to get a graphics card.. ahhh I was so tempted but I told him, maybe not this time. =P

    Bought from IdealTech: Z77E-ITX

And with that, our adventure ended for the day (for this bit of it, anyway)
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Part II: Assembling kurohako

I was actually quite chickeny to be abit rough with the parts.. cause I thought if I pushed something in the wrong direction, something would break!

The funnest part I suppose was taking the casing apart, see what goes where, how it all fits in, where all the screws go. It made so much sense! XD

Mounting the motherboard was easy peasy, so no problems there.. Although we were abit stumped cause it didn’t exactly fit the back panel nicely.. but we managed it in the end. =D

The trickier bit was figuring out where *everything else* went on the motherboard:

  • Processor: okay, this one wasn’t too hard. Snapping the heatsink was harder than I thought cause I really was afraid of either destroying the snap joint or the mobo! =P But fears were allayed, just needed abit more force. Hahaha, I was being too gentle.
  • RAM: hahah I thought I was inserting it the wrong way, then Reeis was like “aiyah I’ve done this a BAJILLION TIMES, just snap it in till this end bit pops up, and you’re good to go. Here, I’ll show you the first one. ” AH YOU IS GENIUZZ! XD
  • Connecting everything to the PSU: Ok this has to be the trickiest part – I swear, if it weren’t for the manual that came with the motherboard, I SWEAR I wouldn’t know where all the cables went. It’s like an octopus ready to devour the board (and power it up! XD) I think I bent one of the power pins =P But at least everything was in the correct place!
  • HDD: This one, easy. The slightly difficult part was to slide it into the mount where the SSD was (it’s 2.5″tray, then 3.5″ tray)
  • SSD: This one… *sigh* I had it in the bay just fine, plugged in the power cable just fine.. AND THEN CAME THE FINAL CONNECTION to the SATA port on the SSD itself. I pushed it in, and when I tried to remove it.. OMFGWTFBBQ THE ENTIRE L-CONNECTOR CAME OFF WITH IT! Like WTF IS THIS SHIT! Amazing thing was that the pins are completely intact and straight, it was just that flimsy plastic connector that ripped off. AISEY! I was so heartbroken at this that Reeis had to console me “Don’t worry, I’m sure we can exchange it or something.”

We even came up with a freaking song for the whole fiasco! (edit: with corrections from Reeis)

Yesterday, all our troubles seemed so far away
Then this L-tab had to break away
OH I BELIEVED, IN YESTERDAY!

Yesterday!!
Fixing pc parts was child’s play
AND OMGWTF THIS IS SIBEH SUAY [something I don’t remember]
OH WHAT HAPPENED, YESTERDAY!

Why, DID THIS HAPPEN AT ALL
I DON’T KNOW, I CANNOT SAY!
Now I’ve got to throw this cheap piece of shit all away

______________________________________

Part III: Initiating kurohako

The first time round, *nothing* booted up. The only sound I could hear was the chassis fan spinning. The processor fan was even quieter than a mouse.

*cue dramatic music*

This time round, I didn’t have Reeis to mock me (lawl that’s what best friends do, right?) so I had to open her up again, re-do EVERYTHING from scratch (as in, rinse and repeat installation of components) on turbo mode cause I was abit panicky, and boot her up again.

image

This was the truly miraculous moment of it all; when kurohako booted, and went into the BIOS screen. I felt like such a proud parent! =D MY BABY IS ALIVE! It was such a relief! XD Admittedly at the time I had no other spare monitor, so I had to make do with a 15″(yes, that’s how old this monitor was) just to make sure the innards were working fine. And I had to use it for a couple of days.

image

So say hello to kurohako! XD

Few days later, Aizat asked “Hey so when do you want to pick up your monitor?”

And AS IT SO HAPPENED I was meeting Reeis for dinner that day, so she *once again* had the privilege of accompanying me to get my monitor.

image

Tadaaaaaaaaaaahhh :3 my current 23″ Sammy monitor, Isn’t she lovely? XD

____________________________________

It’s still not the end though; I still have a few things to get to fully complete my list.

  • get my SSD from the shop and re-install my OS on it (I need to experience this insta-boot thing, as well as try out some games installed on it!)
  • a beloved mechanical keyboard
  • also, a decent set of speakers

plans for the brand-new shirohiro 2.0

well, shirohiro 1.0 is currently 5.5 years old. From 2007 Jan – 2012 Jan, and with my brilliant deduction that 1 computer year = 20 human years.. shirohiro is a centenarian!

Time for a change.

  • Her parts are all creaky
  • She tends to run into bad sectors that just kills the entire OS (meaning I have to hard reboot just to use it again)
  • Lags like crazy (having *upgraded* from Windows XP SP3 to Fedora 15!)
  • Speakers which are completely gone (crackling sounds, anyone? Must’ve driven the sound driver insane until it spoiled)

So here’s what I’ve decided on – this time, shirohiro 2.0 will be a desktop. A mini desktop, nonetheless, but a desktop powerful enough by today’s standards. A facelift, because you deserve it! =)

Phase 1: The main parts and necessary components (including monitor, cause I don’t have one!)
Casing: SilverstoneTek SG06
Motherboard: AsusTek Z77E-ITX
CPU: Ivy Bridge i5-3570K
RAM: 2x4GB DDR3 RAM
HDD: 128GB SSD + 2TB SATA III
Monitor: LGIPS236V

Phase 2: The pretty parts, not completely necessary but I WILL GET THEM because I only build a box once in a lifetime.. rest of the time I’ll just be upgrading parts.
PSU: 600W
Cooling system: CoolerMaster Hyper 212 Evo
Keyboard: WASD V1 Semi-Custom Keyboard with Cherry Blue switches

And I guess, that’s it for now :3 Project will start prolly late August. See how my financials go. =P

recap, recap!

Ending the 2nd week. Found this little nifty app (Noom) that I’m using, see how that works out. =P Was inspired because guama said I was getting shapeless. (the ‘nicer’ or ‘harsher’ way of saying that I’m fat I guess, I dunno.. guama works in mysterious ways)

I kinda wish they gamified it a little, like having little badges of glory like 4sq does. But I do love the way they make you classify your food into categories, a simpler concept to grasp that painstakingly counting calories. Honestly, might work for overseas where they display it just about everywhere (including the greasy spoon places!), but here in KL where the mere concept of it to the masses is almost unheard of, this is a really awesome alternative to a diet diary.

________________________

Last weekend was epic (I know, telling it late! but still)

1) Teambuilding event @ Port Dickson
Our team won *both* challenges! With Venee! Which was amazing, she was sporting enough to go through most of the challenges, so I think our team as a whole was really proud of her. Some daunting things like the 6-foot and 8-foot wall, she conquered them too! =D

Last obstacle. I nearly fell back into the mud backwards, but Young saved me! *phew* I is thankful, but for the rest of this week I keep getting made fun of. muh.

Sea rafting was probably one of the more awesome experiences I’ve had. Building the raft was a challenge in itself, but it was fun. And ROWING. zomg rowing was AWESOME LAH! Was yelling my heart out, half angry, and half going “OMG WHEN IS THIS GOING TO FUCKING END” even though my arms were killing me – simply because I knew if I stopped for any longer than 10 seconds, I would totally give up. I would love to do it again.

Was amazing too that I managed to drive back and have enough strength to hit the gas. haha!

2) KLSwing! 3rd Anniversary Partay
‘Twas a whirlwind after I got back home from PD: quickly showered, prettified and made my way to F Buffalo Kitchens. I have to say, I nearly pigged out on the fish fillets. SO DAMN GOOD. Also loved the salad with seared tuna. Now, this is quite something because I’d normally shy away from tuna *UNLESS* it’s fresh. And this one was. =D I need to go back there just to have a proper meal.

Managed to squeeze in some dancing too. At this point fatigue hadn’t killed me yet, so all was good. XD There were Singaporeans. There was the Shanghai dude. And there were us KLSwingers. Small, neat crowd, at a place with really nice ambiance. And nice flooring. And also, nice props! Took some pictars at the conservatory, library, dining area, and the spot with the little garden gnomes. XD So. That was a really really great end to my Saturday.

3) Lunchies with Reeis & Co.
When I woke up. OMAGAWDS I CANNOT LIFT MY FUCKING ARMS. Wearing a t-shirt was easily the dumbest (and most painful thing) to do. But off I went. =D

I got a Holga!! XDXDXD I can’t wait to go out and take some pretty pictures with it. =) Also bought an extra roll of film for my Actionsampler.

With the Guardian of the Monkey Temple almost physically bruising me where I sat, the fun started. (After we had eaten, of course.) Reeis was like “hey hey hey, it’s your birthday!” So she was hustling me to be the center of attention when sly Sara and Nat said “Hey Reeis, you might want to re-read that card on the cake again.”

“Happy Birthday Reeis & Sook”

I LAWLED SOOOO HARD! They were good XD So it was Reeis and me singing “WEEE AAREE THE CHAAAMMPIIONNSS!” in the middle of Fridays on that fateful Sunday noon.

We sat back for abit and talked about.. “What ifs”. It turned into a mini RPG-esque storytelling thingamajiggy though, involving Minotaurs and Medusa in a cave and having our own.. Patronuses. Kind of. XD

It reminded me of days back in primary school where Jyan and I would participate in YK’s Dungeon Master-style RPG, with him as the game master, of course. Complete with fictional characters and sometimes he would antagonize my character just so we all could have some laughs. I miss those days.

writing time

Installed FC15 + Gnome3 on shirohiro, it’s been a good 2 weeks. =)

First time though I managed to bork the install by installing the OS on my thumbdrive =_= *note to self: NEVER do huge installs at 1:30AM*

Still takes some getting used to since I’ve been on Windows for so long (even if my workstation is using the exact same config, but still!)

Few things I love about Fedora though:
No more ctrl+alt+del, kill is my new best friend (esp on a machine as old as this one)
Startup/shutdown/wakeup is fast!
I really do like the Empathy/Evolution integration (even though I’m abit more used to Pidgin but not a real issue here)
My geekdom factor just upped by around 10points XD

Nevermind that not everything is as polished on Fedora (no iTunes! I think I’ve gotten used to iTunes more than I realize~) Cataloguing my incoming music will be that bit more un-fun. =P
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Colleague’s gonna be away in SG for awhile, some visa-related matters. Gonna miss the guy, he’s really fun to work with and has a lot of quirks that is like a ‘habit’ of sorts. Not having him around to go “Hello!” in the way that he does is abit.. =( *sadface! but he’ll be back sometime next month, so we’ll just have to fill in the void somehow =P

So we had a little ‘farewell party’ of sorts by going for an epic 6-hour karaoke sesh yesti. Really, really really had a lot of fun! Some fails from the night:

Ed: “I don’t know this song la! Forgot the lyrics already!”
Me: “Eh what kind of excuse is this, the lyrics are on the screen lar!”

lawl, tried to do a last-minute save, but failed!

That, and Adam calling out randomly to people and getting all these “deer stuck in headlights” looks immortalized on his DSLR. Geezus we look terrible in them!

12 of us squished into a pretty small room, made it cosy! And alot of people yelling to Aerosmith and Queen songs (among others) was really. Awesome.

One of the reasons why I love the place I work at now. XD
_________________________

Work’s been flatlining. Not that I’ve none to do, just that I keep generating incomplete bits of code and that’s just abit frustrating. Everytime I test it, I discover new problems. So fix, fix, fix. And I have people on the other end asking me “So when can we finally release it?”

Please let the testing go OK tomorrow then I can ditch this module already ~___~

more gadget talk

daaammnnn been online window shopping for like 2 days now. I really really would love an upgrade. Was considering the notebooks (which i think is an awesome buy) or maybe I should settle for a AIO. Although the argument for them isn’t really great – I can’t bring it around with me, specs are not that great if compared to a full-blown desktop (it’s like, mm, desktop sized physically, but laptop-sized components & power). But it’s still pretty though! So. I considered these.

  • Obviously, iMac 21″ – pretty, and powerful. but gawd damn it’s expensive
  • MSI Wind Top AE2210 – pretty-ish, power enough, and most likely more decently priced
  • Lenovo ThinkEdge 91z – zomg AIO with SSD?! I would love to try this out.  and the slim factor is really neat =3
sigh, so many options. XD
Also, Jord said he would take over shirohiro if/when I got my replacement. I suppose it also solves the question of what to do with my old machine.
End of  the year, I’ll make my choice. *nodnods*

another contender

for shirohiro’s replacement: Asus U36SD

After all, pricing at around RM3,100 for the i5 option, 4GB RAM, sounds like a pretty good deal to me. Compared to my earlier (albeit loftier) ambitions of owning a MBA/Series 9 which has a price point of roughly RM5,000. Which is overkill for a laptop IMO, even shirohiro cost about the same price as this Asus at the time of purchase.

Question though, what do I do with this shirohiro 1.0 after I’ve obtained 2.0?

  1. give to guama to use as a glorified media player (lawl aichan, you know I love you!)
  2. reccy Lowyat to see which places accept trade-in, even if it’s just for RM200 or whatever
  3. use it as my secondary/backup in case the main fails, play around with synergy and look like a BOSS YO!
Right now, option #3 seems to be most appealing, but I’ll reconsider when I come to the point of actually buying the thing. Probably at the PC fair at the end of this year. =P

keep talking nerdy to me

Had fun most of the afternoon (lalallaa) setting up FC15 and restoring all my used apps on my work machine. I’ve taken over YC’s machine, something considerably more powerful than my own, which is great. Originally was supposed to get the Zion but the graphics card not keng enough to support gnome3 + FC15. had a moment of silence for the sadness that was me not getting the Zion machine (4GB ram, baby! and I was gonna use it as a WAMP server to run some scripts on) but hey, not going to mope too long over that.

Gnome 3 interface is really awesome, but damnit it is soo mafan compared to Gnome 2! So many things tend to crash on it, and I’ve had to reformat and reinstall FC15 2x before it decided to behave itself. Then again, I faced teh constant crashes with the x64 though, it’s ok if I use the x32.

I have to admit though, running any machine on a Fedora feels like reaching the peak of the nerd mountain, and it feels awesome XD Going to grab the ISO from chriszai on Monday once I’ve backed up my stuff – here’s to hoping shirohiro can support it =3 Might not use Gnome3 though, maybe I’ll revert to KDE or Ubuntu, see how it goes. I wonder what’s a good UI out there.. *googles*

once again…

I know I’ve been ranting for the longest time about wanting to change hosting and finally getting my very own domain name. So here I am! =) karchan.com has a nice ring to it, don’t you think?

Have been wanting to post things for awhile now, and with the move to a proper home for my rantings (at last!!) I might be able to carry out that plan.

shirohiro, it’s nearly time for you to go

shirohiro’s getting a little senile. *sadface

time to upgrade! (well, shelving the thought till next year when I think I might be more financially prepared for this purchase, so I thought I might as well do a little homework). Kinda thinking of getting either a Laptop or an AIO. I know, I know, AIO never gets any real recognition unless people are waxing lyrical over an iMac, but I’d like to keep my options open… at least, with the pretty stringent requirements I have.

Laptop Requirements

  • Something really light. Currently shirohiro’s on the heavy side, weighing at 2.7kg. Need something at least half of that.
  • Don’t really care about the OS wars, I’m good with Mac, Windows *or* Linux. Heck, even the upcoming Chrome OS. =D
  • Able to play some games, stuff like Dragon Age or Sims3 decently. I acherly miss playing PC games.
  • SSD would be lovely, but not particularly picky bout HDD space since I’ve got sigma.
  • Batt life of around 5-6 hours would be good.
  • If the price is right, I’ll probably use the laptop paired with a bigger screen. Here’s to hoping!
  • 13″-14″ screen will do. 15″ is lovely, but if it comes with the supermudderfarkin900g added weight, no go. 11″ is good for weight, but too teeny. Keyboard will be squishy and that’s a no no.
  • Backlit lights would be good too, but not entirely necessary.
  • Included warranty will be good, but I think it’s a necessary spend that will be good in the long run.
  • Possible Options

Desktop Requirements

  • Want something that has no tower – would prefer my future shirohiro to not have so many moving parts. screen + processing unit in a single unit just because it’s cool and I like it that way. XD
  • Don’t really care about the OS wars, I’m good with Mac, Windows *or* Linux.
  • Good enough to play some games on, when I’m in the mood.
  • Screen size, 21 – 23/24 inch would be ok.. I’ve got no real use for a 27″ unless it’s doubling as a TV of sorts, haha!
  • SSD would be lovely, but not particularly picky bout HDD space since I’ve got sigma.. getting lazy to leech nowadays. =P
  • Hi-def LCD would be awesome.
  • Possible options:

I’m not putting price into play, simply because I wanna see what’s out there. Cheaper would be nice on the wallet, but if it’s going to die on me after a year, no go.