Monday, October 29, 2012

Pinnacle Studio for iPad




Pinnacle Studio for iPad is a terrific iPad application for editing video on the go. Pinnacle Studio has become my favorite video editing application on my iPad, I have been using Pinnacle Studio for about a month now. Previously Pinnacle Studio was known as Avid Studio. Avido Studio was sold to Corel, the name was changed a ton of new features were added to this awesome application.



You can download it in the App Store for only $7.99:
http://goo.gl/W32gA


Enhance:
  • Use Montage templates to create multi-layer 3D animations, transitions, and titles
  • Help your story flow using 16 transitions—including high-quality dissolves, fades, and more
  • Easily composite video tracks to create layered looks.
  • Generate professional-looking motion titles and graphics with full control over text, font, color, size, position, and rotation.
  • Create amazing Picture-in-Picture effects with full control over position, size, and rotation
  • Pan and zoom on your photos to create high-impact slideshows
  • Enjoy full-screen playback

Create Soundtracks:
  • Use your own audio or choose from the included sound effects
  • Trim audio to any length, set levels, and fade audio in or out
  • Use the Voiceover feature to add documentary-style narration to your videos and slideshows

You can share your work with YouTube, Facebook, Box.com, your Camera Roll and more..



System Requirements:
iOS5
iPad 2 or newer (please note: iPad 1 is not supported with release 2.0)
Visit the Pinnacle Studio website for more info.

Action Movie FX




Action Movie FX is a really cool universal iOS application. Free to download in the App Store. Action Movie FX has been updated quite a few times adding really cool effects to the application. Currently the app features some Call of Duty: Black Ops II effects that you can download for free simply by Tweeting, posting to your Facebook Wall or scanning the CoD:BOII website logo image.

Action Movie FX does feature some In-App Purchases as well, they can be purchased for an additional $0.99 for each effects package. Each package contains 2 additional effects. Don't worry, Action Movie FX does come with several free effects also.

Download it FREE in the App Store:
Action Movie FX - Bad Robot Interactive
Action Movie FX - Bad Robot Interactive



ClamCase All-in-One Keyboard Case & Stand

Friday, October 26, 2012

He-Man for iPad




He-Man is a very fun slasher/action game for iOS. It is a universal game and will work on the iPad, iPhone, and iPod Touch. You can purchase additional Crystals via In-App Purchases that can be used to buy Power-Ups in the game.

The controls are very easy, left side of the iPad is to move forward or backwards. Right side of the iPad is used to attack, you can also swipe up on the right side of the iPad to perform jumps or special attacks.


He-Man is only $0.99 in the App Store, you can download the game here:
iPad - He-Man: The Most Powerful Game in the Universe™ - Chillingo Ltd
iPhone/iPod Touch - He-Man: The Most Powerful Game in the Universe™ - Chillingo Ltd

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

iPad mini Smart Cover

I am really digging the new Smart Cover's for the iPad mini. I like the hingeless design and I am eager to try it out. I wonder if they are going to change the design of the larger iPad Smart Cover? It appears they are still selling the hinged Smart Cover's for the bigger iPad.



The iPad mini Smart Cover comes in 6 colors:

Dark Gray
Blue
Green
Blue
Pink
(Product) RED

There are no leather iPad mini Smart Cover's they are all Polyurethane. I actually prefer the leather myself.

You can find out more about the iPad mini Smart Cover on the Apple website.

Letterpress for iPad





This was my original thought on the game, seems to have been fixed since I first wrote this:

I have had to completely close the app and relaunch it at least 30x today. Probably more. I did not have this issue with the free version of the game, it was only when I upgraded to the paid version. I am not sure if this is some sort of server issue? Maybe I have too many games going at once? Just a thought. Having more than 2 games is the entire reason I upgraded via the In-App Purchase though, if I can't have more than a few games going at once then maybe a limit needs to be placed on the app? If it is not a server issue then maybe it is a Game Center issue? I have not had a problem with Game Center games before though.






The gameplay is fun, the app is beautifully designed. That is not the issue, the issue is the game is pointless if it cannot connect to Game Center. Seems like it has this problem every 5 minutes. Then when you relaunch the game it takes 3-4 minutes for it to update before you are able to do anything in the game. This is a multiplayer game so if I can't connect to Game Center then I just wasted $0.99!



Issues I am having:

  • Constantly have problems connecting..
  • Can't create new matches even after paying the $0.99 to upgrade the free version...








Hopefully this is something that will get addressed in an update, until then I have deleted the app from iPad because there is no sense having something on there that I can not enjoy!




You can visit the Letterpress website for more information about the game. 

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Blue Snowball Microphone





Several months back I wanted to try to record a podcast on my iPad, so I plugged in my white earbuds that came with my iPhone 4S and opened Garageband. To my dismay, the quality of the recording was just terrible, you could hear the mic rubbing up against my shirt as well as my breathing into the microphone. I then tried to use the built-in microphone on the iPad and that recording turned out even worse. If I moved my head the slightest, I sounded far away.  It also picked up every background noise imaginable.

I decided to do some research on USB microphones that did not need an additional power supply to work with the iPad. Enter the Blue Snowball microphone. I found a few other microphones when searching for USB microphones, but something about the Snowball attracted me to it. Price and the design were the likely candidates. I wanted something I know was going to be a great microphone, but I didn’t want to pay through the roof.



Trying to podcast on the iPad is tricky though, the quality of the recording is not the same as it would be on the Mac, but that should have been obvious to me. On my Mac, I can open System Preferences, tap on "Sound," and navigate to "Input" to adjust my Input Level. I cannot do that on my iPad. On the iPad I am stuck with only application settings, yet on the Mac can adjust microphone levels in the application. I am currently using Amadeus Pro on the OS X side of things. I can adjust every aspect of my recording with numerous “Effects Settings.” With Garage Band on the iPad, I only have a couple of settings:
  • Solo = On/Off
  • Track Volume
  • Echo Level
  • Reverb Level
What happens then is the microphone does 2 things, it will pick up a ton of background noise and it will pick up any heavy breathing. After you record on your iPad in Garageband, you do have the option for a few additional effects such as:
  • Small Room
  • Large Room
  • Dry
  • Several other sounds
You can also adjust the Compressor and Original Volume of the recording as well in Garageband, but honestly the quality of the recording is still just “okay." The recording leaves a lot to be desired. You can really get a sense for how bad the recording sounds if you have a decent set of headphones on. If you are listening through your computer speakers the sound is decent, but with headphones on you can really tell a huge difference in quality.

Back to the Blue Snowball, if you are looking for a great microphone at an affordable price, then you can’t go wrong with the Snowball. It is designed beautifully, very sturdy, and offers an overall great sound on your desktop/laptop and your iPad. You will get a much better sound quality with the Blue Snowball than you will with the built-in microphone or earbuds with microphone.

Features:

  • Condenser, Pressure Gradient
  • Omnidirectional or Cardioid
  • Frequency Response: 40–18kHz
  • Sample/Word Rate: 44.1 kHz/16 Bit
  • Weighs 460 grams
  • OS X or Windows XP, Vista, 7

Pros:

  • Plug n’ Play
  • Great sound quality
  • Use from all angles
  • Adjustable stand
  • Works great with the iPad or Mac

Cons:

  • USB cable was cheaply made
  • Bulky on the desk
Final Thoughts:

I am very impressed with the overall sound of the Blue Microphone.  The iPad has a few limitations as far as settings go, but that is not the Snowball’s fault. It does perform much better than the built-in microphone.  Since I can also use it on my iMac, it delivers a higher quality sound. If you are wanting to do YouTube review videos or start your own podcast, the microphone should be the first thing you upgrade.  If you do upgrade, I'd highly recommend giving the Blue Snowball a look. I am sure you will be just as impressed as I am.

The sound quality is terrific. The microphone is lightweight and comes apart easily if you need to travel with it. The stand it comes with is built of a high quality plastic and has rubber bumpers on the feet that keep it from sliding on your desktop.  This will reduce any vibration that could cause additional background noise when recording. The design will set it apart from other microphones, but the quality is where the Snowball may out perform the competition.

Where to buy:
Purchase the Blue Snowball on Amazon
Purchase the Camera Connection Kit on Amazon
Purchase the Pop Filter on Amazon

Blue Microphone Website
Blue Snowball Manual


Blue Microphones Snowflake Portable USB Microphone - SNOWFLAKE (Google Affiliate Ad)

Strategery





Strategery for iPad is a world domination game. This is one of my favorite games on my iPad, it is a universal iOS game and will work on the iPad, iPhone, and iPod Touch.

FEATURES

• Challenging game of offensive and defensive strategy
• Play for a couple minutes or a couple hours (it's pretty addictive)
• Four difficulty settings, ranging from "Easy" (for the strategically impaired) to "Brutal" (risk being humiliated)
• Online battles with push notifications and random matchmaking!
• Pass-and-play multiplayer (up to 5 players)
• Automatically saves your game to resume later
• Randomly generated maps (four sizes) make every game a unique challenge
• TONS of gameplay options to tailor the game to your preferences

Strategery is only $1.99 and is available in the App Store:

Strategery - Affogato LLC

There is also a Lite version that you can download for free:

Strategery Lite - Affogato LLC



For more information about Strategery, visit the Strategery website.




*** Strategery has not been updated for Retina on the iPad 3. ***

Friday, October 19, 2012

Vodio for iPad




Vodio is a universal iOS video magazine application. Vodio is a really cool Flipboard like application for iOS but only instead of news it is all videos. Vodio has social integration built right into the application, you can sign in with your YouTubeTwitter, or Facebook account. When you log in with your social network accounts you will get a panel with all the videos your friends and family members have shared on those networks. But you don't need a social account to use the application, you can add panels to your Vodio stream by picking topics that interest you. I enjoy my iPad so I have panels set up for iPad Apps and iPad news videos.


There are a ton of different channels to choose from, not just technology. Some of the channels include:
  • Entertainment
  • Comedy
  • Sports
  • Movies
  • Apps
  • Tech
  • Music
  • Cool & Inspiring
  • News
  • Viral
  • Celebrities
  • Automotive
  • Science
  • more....

In each of these channels are sub-channels, take the Game channel for instance. It features topcis that include: Xbox, Machinima, Electronic Arts, GameSpot and more..


This is a superb application, especially on the iPad and now that iOS 6 has removed the YouTube app. Vodio is the best way to not only experience YouTube but to also find more great video content on your iPad.



Two things I wish the developers would consider adding:

  1. Vimeo - If I could get my Vimeo feed in the app I would be set to go.
  2. Search - I would like to be able to search for videos by tags or topics.
Even without those features this is probably the best video application I have used on the iPad. I have a couple of apps that I currently use but I have a feeling they will not see much use from here on out. Vodio is free in the App Store and to be honest if you do not give it shot you would have to be insane, it is a great app, go download it. Now.



Vodio for iPad: Vodio Video Magazine - Discover, Watch and Share Great Videos - Vodio Labs Ltd.

Vodio for iPhone: Vodio Video Magazine - Discover, Watch and Share Great Videos - Vodio Labs Ltd.

How-to Import an Aperture Library


Simple video showing how to import an Aperture library. Very easy to do.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Gesture Search by Google Inc.



I recently changed devices and am now using a Sprint Galaxy S III (with which I am in love). However, the functionality for universal search seems to have been removed… which is something I had heavily relied upon in my devices. Very rarely do I look for an app or have many icons on my Android screens, as I typically search for the app I need via the Google search bar using universal search. Since the recent change, however, this is unable to be done. This put me on a quest to find another way to search my device, and Gesture Search is the answer.

With Gesture Search by Google, the following device-based items are able to be searched… Contacts (names of your contacts), Browser (bookmarks), Apps (names of installed apps), Music (artists, albums, and tracks), and Settings (names of phone settings). Simply begin spelling the word (app, contact, bookmark, music, settings) of what you are searching with your finger, one letter at a time, on your screen. The item you are searching for will soon appear.

Gesture Search is extremely accurate. I do not have the best handwriting by any means, yet it always interprets my chicken scratch.

Download in the Play Store: http://goo.gl/C5qve

APPvice
Reviewed by +Jennifer Ruggiero 

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Leather or Polyurethane Smart Cover?




I have been asked several times which Smart Cover I prefer, the leather or the polyurethane. It boils down to preference but I do have my own opinion which I don’t mind sharing.

The leather is my choice for Smart Cover and for several reason:

  • Feels more sturdy when standing up the iPad using the Smart Cover.
  • When the Smart Cover gets broken in, it has a more natural look to it.
  • Smells better, it is leather and leather smells sooooo good.
  • Doesn’t get dirty or dingy looking like the polyurethane cover does.

Do you already own a Smart Cover? Which did you buy, leather or polyurethane? Let me know on Twitter @iCrizzo.

Leather Smart Cover - $30.99 on Amazon
Polyurethane Smart Cover - $12.99 on Amazon

EarPods by Apple





I have been using the new EarPods for a couple of weeks now since the iPhone 5 launched. I decided to purchase me an additional pair to use with my iPad and figured I should do a quick overview of them. So here is my opinion on the EarPods and what I think about them compared to other earbud style headphones.

The first question most people ask me: “Are they worth the $29 they cost?” This is an easy answer for me, YES! For $29 you get what you paid for, they are not the best earbuds on the market but they don’t cost nearly as much as those high end earbuds cost.

For example, I paid $149 for Beats Tour In-Ear Headphones and if you compare them with the $29 Apple EarPods, the EarPods will be the better buy. They sound almost every bit as good as the high end Beats but at a fraction of the cost. I know most audiophiles do not consider Beats to be high end headphones but they sure are priced like high end components.

The volume rocker on the new EarPods is a nice redesign vs. the old style Apple EarBuds. The older earbuds were a pain in the rear when you wanted to mute your music or lower the volume. They never seemed to work correctly, Apple has changed the design and now you can feel the +/- button raised a tad on the ends and the middle is slightly recessed for easy access to the mute button. This is a very subtle but much needed change to the EarPods.

The bass is deep in the EarPods, much more so than the older earbuds that Apple sold before. I guess it depends on the type of music you listen to, but for me the added bass is a nice touch. I have read several blogs online stating it was too much bass though, again I think this is opinion based on your preferred music genre.

The overall sound of the EarPods is slightly improved over the older Apple earbuds, although they do not seem as loud as the older earbuds. That could be the main reason they sound better, I think before the sound would get drowned out when I would have my iPad on full blast. If you are looking for a decent pair of in-ear headphones with built in microphone and volume switcher built in then I would highly recommend you check out the EarPods.

Highlights:

  • Designed by Apple
  • Deeper, richer bass tones
  • Greater protection from sweat and water
  • Control music and video playback
  • Answer and end calls

Cygnett Alumni for iPad


The Alumni is another terrific iPad case from Cygnett, Total iPad's favorite iPad accessory maker. The Alumni retails for only $29.99 and features 4 beautiful colors: Blue, Green, Black and Pink. The Alumni is made of a canvas fabric and will help protect your iPad from dings and scratches.



The Alumni has built-in magnets that will allow your iPad to take advantage of the sleep/wake function. The magnets will also double as a way to keep the Alumni front cover securely closed when the iPad is not in use. I did not have to add any additional magnets to the Alumni like I did with the Glam Rock, the Alumni is ready to go out of the box. The sleep/wake function works flawlessly with the Alumni.



The iPad fits nicely into the Alumni and I was able to access the buttons and ports while my iPad was in the Alumni case. The 30-pin connector is easily accessible to plug your USB cable into, I could not use my dock though while my iPad was in the Alumni but that should be expected. The earbud jack was also easily accessible when plugging my headphones into the iPad while in the Alumni case. I also had no problems using the volume buttons and mute/rotate switch on the side of the iPad. The rear of the Alumni has a tiny opening cut out so I could use my rear facing camera on my iPad if I needed too.

Overall the Alumni is a stylish iPad case that seems to be geared at the younger audience. It has an inside pocket that would be a nice place to store notes for class. Factor in the bright colors of the Alumni and this just screams high school. That is not a bad thing and is only my opinion. I would easily recommend the Alumni to anyone looking for a stylish iPad case that not only looks good but also protects your iPad from bumps and bruises. Factor in the price tag of only $29.99, you would have to be insane to not consider the Alumni. Check out my video demo below for a more detailed review of the Alumni by Cygnett.

Pros:
Magnetic closure
Nice canvas fabric outside
Protect iPad screen from scratches

Cons:
No way to stand up the iPad

For more information about the Alumni case from Cygnett, please visit their website.
Check out the other terrific Cygnett iPad accessories.


Thursday, October 11, 2012

White iPhone 5 - Another Lame Unboxing, Kinda




So this is my unboxing, not really an unboxing video. It is not really an unboxing because it got unboxed at the AT&T store so they could activate it. This was more or less just meant to show what it looks like when you get it home.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Nintendo 3DS XL - Unboxing / review




I bought the 3DS XL when it launched and decided to do an unboxing. In the process though my microphone on my camera recorded all muffled and I had to try and re-record the audio after the fact. So it is a little off. :(

Quick thoughts on the 3DS:

* 90% larger screen makes it more enjoyable
* Easier to hold in my hands, the regular 3DS felt way too small
* Fingerprintless
* Regular stylus (no telescope stylus like original)
* Better speakers, the seem much louder than original 3DS
* 3D slider now has an 'audible' click and is not as easy to accidentally turn on
* Smurf blue, still wish I had my 25th Anniv. Zelda 3DS though
* Multiple viewing angles, great for watching Netflix
* Super Mario 2
* 3D looks crisper on the larger screen

I am happy with my purchase. I will enjoy this much more than the original 3DS which always felt way too small for me. I was always hitting the wrong button or sliding the 3D on when I didn't want it on because of the 3D button never 'locked'. Nintendo addressed that issue.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Glam Rock Folio by Cygnett




The Glam Rock folio case is another terrifically designed iPad accessory from Cygnett. The Glam features a beautiful shiny, high gloss patent leather outside with a soft black felt-like inside. The Glam is designed to be used with the iPad 2 and ‘the new’ iPad or iPad ‘3’ as many including myself refer to it.



Slide your iPad into the Glam and secure it in place with the velcro flap that will keep your iPad securely inside the case and keep it from sliding out. The Glam features a magnetic closure so the cover will put your iPad to sleep when you close the front cover or wake your iPad when you lift the front flap. The magnetic closure is iPad 2 ready, for the iPad ‘3’ you will have to install an additional magnet. It does not take much effort, basically you just remove adhesive tape from the back of the magnet and place it in a designated spot on the inside front door of the folio. I assume this was because the case was designed for the iPad 2 and when the iPad ‘3’ was released Apple added additional magnets in the iPad ‘3’. I have tested the case with my iPad 3 and it did not cause me any problems and worked fine for me.



Need to use your iPad when it is in the folio? No problem, the Glam features 3 different multi-view angles so you can prop up your iPad when you want to watch a movie or lower it when you are reading a book. When I had my iPad propped-up it did not feel flimsy when touching the iPad, it felt very sturdy unlike when I stand-up my iPad using the Smart Cover. You can also lay your iPad flat when you need to type on it which really helps because it raises the iPad about an inch from the surface making it easier to type. This gives the iPad a more natural ‘keyboard like feel’ when typing on the soft keys of the iPad.

The iPad fits nicely in the Glam Rock and does not add much weight to the iPad although it does make the iPad a tad bit thicker to carry. It is not bulky just thicker but that should be expected since it is a folio case. When the iPad is in the folio case you are still able to access all the ports and buttons on the iPad. The 30-pin connector is still easily accessible to plug your USB cable into. I was also able to easily connect my Camera Connection Kit into my iPad while it was in the Glam. I could not use my dock though, but the iPad slides easily enough in and out of the case so if I needed to dock my iPad that I did not consider it a hassle. The earbud jack was also easily accessible when plugging my headphones into the iPad while in the case. I also had no problems using the volume buttons and mute/rotate switch on the side of the iPad.

Pros:

Shiny metallic finish
Multi-View angles
Magnetic closure
Very sturdy

Cons:

Not having the magnet pre-installed for iPad 3

Final Thoughts:

Overall this is a nicely designed iPad folio case and if you are looking for a case to make a fashion statement then you should consider the Cygnett Glam Rock Folio. The metallic patent leather finish looks great and the single stitch seam running along the outside of the case adds to the overall appeal. The case is designed very well so it will keep your iPad safe from scratches and probably most drops as well. My iPad feels very well padded while in the Glam Rock. I consider the multi-view angles to be an extremely huge plus, especially when watching videos on my iPad.

The Glam Rock Folio by Cygnett retails for only $59.99. When you are ready to purchase the Glam Rock you can head over to cygnett.com or follow this link to their website.

Be sure to check out Cygnett’s other terrific accessories.

Cygnett Website.
You can follow Cygnett of Twitter.
Like Cygnett of Facebook.
View their demo videos on YouTube.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Doodle Jump HD for iPad





Doodle Jump HD is an iPad only game. It is a terrific and highly addictive game with super easy controls that will keep you jumping all day and all night long. Doodle Jump is one of the all-time best selling games on the iOS platform. Doodle Jump HD is the iPad only version and it is optimized for the iPad screen size. Doodle Jump HD was updated about a week ago and brought the highly popular 'Ninja Theme' to the iPad gameplay.

The game play is fairly simple, you can tap on the screen to shoot upward at monsters who are trying to block your path. To move you simply tilt the iPad to the left or right to move to the left or right side of the screen, tilt in the direction you want to move. That is it, this is the type of game play I love on the iPad because it utilizes the gyroscope and the device’s accelerometer to make gameplay much more enjoyable than actual on-screen controls.

Doodle Jump also features some social integration, you can Tweet your high scores or post them to your Facebook wall.
 

Doodle Jump also features a few In-App Purchases for coins that can be used for power-ups or additional outfits. The IAP are not needed to enjoy the game and you can gather coins in the game that will allow you to purchase the same items at no additional cost.

What are you waiting for? Go buy it. Now. You can thank me later.

You can purchase Doodle Jump HD in the App Store for only $2.99: Doodle Jump HD - Lima Sky



LINKS:
Lima Sky Website
Follow Doodle Jump on Twitter
Become a Doodle Jump fan on Facebook

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

JEFIT Pro for iPhone (Review)





JEFIT Pro App Review by APPvice (Jennifer Ruggiero) - as heard on :
http://appvice.net/episode10/
and also mentioned at http://appvice.net/app/jefit/.

Memories for OS X




Memories is a journal application for your Mac. If you want to keep a daily journal of your life Memories is a nice application to consider. The features include:

* ADD IMAGES, SOUND AND VIDEOS
* PRINTING
* STYLE & FORMAT EVERY ENTRY
* AUTO-SAVE
* EXPORT / IMPORT
* PASSWORD PROTECT

Memories is a $9.99 application in the Mac App Store:
Memories - Juicy Cocktail

JEFIT Pro




JEFIT Pro App Review by APPvice (Jennifer Ruggiero) - as heard on
http://appvice.net/episode10/ and also mentioned at http://appvice.net/app/jefit/.