Apple Watch Series 3: Time to Upgrade?


Apple unveiled the latest generation of Apple Watch, Series 3 in the fall of 2017. During its keynote, Apple shared all the new tech and features that makes it a great smartwatch. The biggest highlight was its cellular capability, which essentially makes it independent of an iPhone. However, there’s a catch, actually couple of them. Firstly, cellular connection on Apple Watch is supported in limited countries only. Secondly, you need to pay an extra subscription fee to utilize cellular services on your Apple Watch Series 3.


Highlights of Apple Watch Series 3

  • 1.65” AMOLED Screen (Max Brightness: 1000 nits)
  • Cellular model supports Electronic Sim (Apple e-Sim)
  • Up-to 16GB of Internal Storage (Cellular model)
  • Built-In GPS for Location Accuracy & Outdoor Workouts
  • Waterproofing till 50 Meters, water-ejection through speaker.
  • Up-to 20 hours of Battery time

Comparing Apple Watch Series 3 with Series 0  

Essentially, Apple Watch Series 3 looks the same as all its predecessors. It is a tad bit thicker than the original Apple Watch but considering all new elements packed inside its shell, that’s quite an achievement. Apple has also added an extra speaker on the side to eject the water out of the watch once it has taken a dip. Although the screen size haven’t changed but screen brightness has increased significantly. It is up from 450 Nits in the original Apple Watch to 1000 Nits in Series 3. It does make a visible difference especially in broad daylight.


How Good is its Cellular Connection?

Apple has once again found an innovative way of integrating the cellular connection to Apple Watch. For starters, you don’t need to insert a physical SIM inside the watch. Instead, it utilizes the same LTE connection as your iPhone through an e-sim. Which means, if you are away from your iPhone, you would receive all calls/texts directed to your iPhone’s SIM on your Apple Watch. It makes the entire process hassle-free and user friendly. However, Apple hasn’t perfected it yet. There were a lot of instances where the signal dropped or it took a lot of time to fetch social media updates.


 Is it good enough to upgrade?

 Apple Watch has seen quite a lot of improvements throughout its life cycle. While the first-gen watch showed the world Apple’s take on smart watches, it lacked the seamless delivery of performance. Speaking of performance, the boot speed comparison of Apple Watch Series 0 and Series 3 showed a massive difference of 2 minutes. Take a look at it below.

Although, Apple provided incremental updates in all its new generations of Apple Watches, but Series 3 actually delivers the user experience that users always longed for. This is partly due to the integration of new S3 Chipset and a little boost in its RAM to 768MB from 512MB (Series 2). These specs coupled with Watch OS 4 makes it one of the best smart watches in the market.

During WWDC, 2018, Apple showcased WatchOS 5 and it adds even more features than the current WatchOS. However, it would no longer support the First-gen Apple Watch, probably due to its outdated specs. Hence, it seems like a perfect time to grab the latest Apple Watch Series 3. It starts from $359 in the US and around 47,000 PKR in Pakistan.


Is Apple Watch for you?

To answer this question, it’s important to focus on your preferences. Since Apple Watch only works with an iPhone therefore, it’s important to have an iPhone (preferably 6s onwards). It integrates exceptionally well with iOS as all your notifications are available on your wrist. In essence, you don’t need to take your iPhone out to glimpse at your notifications.

Furthermore, Apple Watch serves as a great fitness tracker. From tracking your grueling workouts at the gym to swimming with your pals at the local pool. It will give you a pretty accurate picture of your workouts. With WatchOS 4, it can also tap you from time to time to remind you to take a breath. In essence, it is a great accessory for health-conscious people.

Lastly, with the introduction of Cellular version, Apple has taken portability to another level. You are no longer dependent on your iPhone to make or receive calls. LTE connectivity ensures great use of SIRI commands. Although the quality of Apple Watch’s microphone is pretty good but for clearer communication, it can seamlessly pair with Apple AirPods to provide better communication.


Verdict

During our extensive testing of Apple Watch Series 3, it has proved yet again that it is the best smart watch for an iPhone user. Although, it’s rectangular design is not liked by many, but with time, it’s impressive functionality has overshadowed its rather different design. Besides, you could always customize your watch face as per your liking.

As far as its performance goes, it provides an exceptionally well user experience. There are no occasional jerks or hiccups and WatchOS 4 is extremely fluid. Recently, Apple Watch Series 3 was also declared the Best Smartwatch for iPhone (reviews.com)

YTD recommends getting the Series 3 Apple Watch, however, it’s important to note that cellular connectivity is supported in limited countries for now. Check the full list of supported countries by clicking HERE before buying the cellular version. In case your country is not on that list, then you can go for the non-cellular version for around $70 less! The non-cellular version provides a better user experience as it does not suffer from LTE related issues.

Rating: ★★★★ Recommended


 

 

DJI Mavic Air: The Best Drone Under $1000?


DJI recently launched their latest iteration of Mavic line-up. The newest member of Mavic family is called the Mavic Air. It is by far the most refined and intricate consumer level drone DJI has made. It’s folding mechanism is something that surprised us the most. The front legs extend like Mavic Pro but the rear legs actually hinge beneath the surface and then opens up. Thanks to this folding mechanism, Mavic Air becomes the most portable drone from DJI’s entire line-up . Portability is not only limited to the drone, but it carries on to Mavic Air’s controller as well. DJI has done that by including detachable joysticks. They can be taken out and placed securely under the controller. All these attributes make DJI Mavic Air a great drone for travelers. But is it really the best drone under $1000? Let’s dive in to see!


Inside the DJI Mavic Air Combo Package

  1. DJI Mavic Air
  2. Remote Controller with up to 4 km signal range
  3. 3 Batteries (2375 MAh)
  4. Propeller guards
  5. 2 sets of propellers (1 set for each side)
  6. 4-Slot battery charging dock (it only charges 1 Battery at a time L)
  7. USB-C charging cable
  8. Remote controller connecting cables (Micro-USB to Lightning, USB-C & Micro-USB)
  9. DJI branded carrying bag for controller and its accessories
  10. DJI branded case for carrying Mavic Air

Flying Experience of DJI Mavic Air

There are a couple of ways of flying Mavic Air, the first one is to control it using hand gestures. Although it looks nice but it could be a hassle to master the art of making accurate gestures. Hence, the better way is to fly it via remote controller. The process is fairly simple. Here’s how to do that:

  1. Turn on your controller
  2. Turn on Mavic Air
  3. Connect your Android or iOS device to the controller using the suitable connector
  4. Open DJI Go 4 app and Enter Live View

Thanks to the hard-wired connection, there is no noticeable lag in the live video feed. DJI claims that Mavic Air is capable of flying at a distance of up-to 4 KMs. During our test flights, we managed to fly it about 2 KMs away without any problem, however, we had to call it back due to low battery levels.


DJI Mavic Air’s Quick Shot Mode & More 

DJI Mavic Air supports a bunch of Quick Shots. Although most of them are available on DJI Spark as well but Mavic Air has got couple of exclusive quick shots, listed below:

  1. Asteroid: Adds drama to your world by first flying backwards from the subject and then coupling the captured video with a spherical photo. Pretty cool actually!
  2. Boomerang: Circles the subject to depict its surroundings in a cinematic way.

Needless to say, All these Quick Shots work great and offer some amazing effects. They are extremely easy to use as the user just needs to select the target and then choose their desired quick shot. Mavic Air takes care of rest of the stuff. There is even a progress meter on the right-side of the screen, which depicts the completion level of every quick shot. Overall, DJI’s companion app works great with Mavic Air!


Battery Life of DJI Mavic Air

There are a number of important factors to consider before determining the battery performance. The most important ones are:

  1. Wind Speed
  2. Temperature
  3. Extra weight (from accessories like propeller guards etc.)

In moderate wind of 15-20 Km/h, Mavic Air managed to maintain it’s stability without any issue and the battery life wasn’t effected much either. However, we flew Mavic Air at 43 degrees Celsius, and its internal fans were constantly on. DJI Mavic Air provided a battery time of 18 minutes with these conditions.

During our second flight, we also mounted propeller guards to see if they make any difference. To our surprise, the battery time remained the same as before. This was definitely not the case with DJI Spark, as its battery drained about a minute faster with propeller guards on!


Gimbal & Camera Quality of DJI Mavic Air

Dji Mavic Air is equipped with a 12 MP f/2.8 camera which is capable of recording 4K footage at 30 FPS. What’s more impressive is that it records this footage at 100Mbps, which is even better than Mavic Pro’s 60Mbps. Although it does not make a huge difference in quality but it’s the little details like these that collectively makes a difference.

As far as its stabilization is concerned, Mavic Air has a class leading, 3-axis gimbal which delivers a buttery smooth footage. There is no jitter while panning or tilting the camera and its overall performance is top-notch!


Is DJI Mavic Air the perfect drone?

Absolutely Not. Although it is a result of DJI’s evolution and extensive R&D but it still isn’t perfect. Here’s the list of things that needs to be improved.

  1. Charging dock only charges one battery at a time. It automatically detects the amount of juice left in each battery and only charges the one with the greatest level of battery percentage. It is a practical solution but far from ideal.
  2. You cannot charge Mavic Air by plugging it directly using it’s USB-C Port. It is only there for data transfer.
  3. It is extremely difficult to take the Micro-SD card out of its port. It resides pretty deep inside it’s shell and takes some serious effort and time to get it out!
  4. APAS (Advance Pilot Assistance System) is not accurate enough. It more of a hit and miss especially near tree branches.
  5. Although DJI was generous enough to provide a USB-C port on Mavic Air but for some reason they put a Micro-USB port on its controller. Means you have to carry 2 cables with your Mavic Air. Not cool!

Verdict

Mavic Air is by far DJI’s most refined consumer level drone under $1000. From its design to performance, everything is made to deliver a great user experience. DJI has certainly addressed most issues that their previous drones were criticized for. For instance, many Mavic Pro users had issues with its exposed gimbal, however, in Mavic Air, DJI has provided a very secure housing for its gimbal. Apart from its great design, Mavic Air also performs exceptionally well for its size. It’s not only safer to fly with its advance obstacle avoidance capabilities but also records a great quality footage!

Rating: ★★★★★ Highly Recommended


GoPro Hero 6 Black: Worth an Upgrade?

GoPro launched the Hero 6 Black in the fall of 2017 with some incremental upgrades to its flagship device. YourTechDose took a thorough look at the external hardware and there were hardly any noticeable differences between Hero 5 Black & Hero 6 Black on the outside. The only obvious difference is the Hero 6 branding next to the lens cover. Other than that, everything is identical (including all ports).

While GoPro completely overhauled their Hero 5 Black in 2016, they adopted a rather subtle strategy for 2017. GoPro Hero 6 Black features the same body but adds much more fluidity to its UI (User Experience).

However, GoPro has completely revamped its internals for sheer performance & superb image quality. Here’s what has changed from the inside of Hero 6 Black:

  • Custom GP1 Processor (Say Goodbye to touch-Lag)
  • 4K @ 60FPS (Bumped up from 30 FPS)
  • Amazing EIS (Electronic Image Stabilization)
  • Better Dynamic Range & Low Light Performance

Improvements in GoPro Hero 6 Black

Hero 6 features an entirely new processor called the GP1, which is custom-made for the camera itself. Needless to say, when it is used alongside the Hero 5, it is significantly more responsive. Not only the touch animations have improved but the “Voice Commands” takes much less time to execute. In essence, the user experience has vastly improved on the Hero 6 Black.

Moving on to other incremental bumps, Hero 6 is now capable of capturing 4K resolution videos at 60 FPS. This makes it a perfect go-to action-cam for some crisp videos. Similarly, it’s slow-motion capabilities have also improved, which means that it can now capture FHD videos at 240 FPS (up from 120FPS in its predecessor).

GoPro has also improved the Dynamic range in the Hero 6, which captures more details and vivid colors than before. Similarly, the Low-light picture quality has also improved, although it is still not comparable to latest smart-phone cameras.

Zoom Feature on GoPro Hero 6

 GoPro has also introduced the Zoom feature in their Hero 6 Black. Before you get all excited, know that It’s a digital zoom which means that the camera software crops the original image to achieve the required focal length.

For starters, Hero 5 & 6 uses the following focal lengths for each of its modes:

Wide FOV= 17.2mm | Medium FOV=21.9mm |Narrow FOV=34.4mm(Source)

Although the Zoom Feature is exclusive to Hero 6 but it is only available till a maximum resolution of 2.7K, not available at 4K! Is it good? Well, its far from ideal as it compromises the image quality but still good to have, especially when other FOVs are not working for you!

Electronic Image Stabilization: “Gimbal Like”?

GoPro showcased their latest EIS at their Keynote by saying that it is almost as good as using a gimbal. According to our tests, Hero 6 has improved a lot when it comes to EIS. There are 2 main aspects in which Hero 6 takes EIS to another level:

  1. In Hero 5 black, EIS only worked at the maximum resolution of 1080P at 30FPS, Hero 6 is capable of stabilizing 4K footage recorded at 30FPS as well as 1080P at up to 120FPS. That deserves an applause!
  2. EIS has improved exponentially as compared to Hero 5 Black, it is much more stable and utilizes the GoPro sensors in a much effective way.

However, when we put it aside the Hero 5 mounted on FieyuTech G5 stabilization gimbal, the stabilization on the gimbal was relatively better. Nonetheless, the stabilization on GoPro Hero 6 works really well and it’s a major improvement over the Hero 5 Black.

Battery Life of Hero 6 Black

Hero 6 Black utilizes the same battery as the Hero 5 Black. It’s a 1220MAH battery which lasts about 1 Hour & 30 minutes with GPS turned on and about 2 Hours with GPS off (Recording 1080P @ 30FPS). Recording at 4K drained the battery much faster, we managed to get about 50-minutes of recording time from a single battery (GPS off). It charges via USB-C port which was introduced with Hero 5 Black in 2016.

Reasons to Upgrade to Hero 6 Black

This is where the Cost-Benefit Analysis comes handy! GoPro Hero 6 is currently retailing for $399(Amazon).Whereas, the Hero 5 Black retails for $100 less. To justify the extra $100, you get an amazing 4K stabilized footage with better Slow-motion quality and a fluid user interface.

The Plus side of upgrading to Hero 6 from Hero 5 is that you can keep all your accessories, mounts and even extra batteries and just upgrade the camera itself. Here are the Top 5 GoPro accessories according to YourTechDose!

Let us know in the comments what you think?

Our Verdict

GoPro Hero 6 is undoubtedly one of the best action-cams available in the market. From it’s usability to specs, everything is class-leading. The camera performs like a 2018 flagship should! During our extensive tests, we thoroughly enjoyed shooting with it, although it got a bit too hot at times!

 

Final Score: ★★★★★ Highly Recommended by YourTechDose

 

 

 

FeiyuTech G5 Gimbal: Vlogger’s Best Friend!


What is a gimbal & Why do you need one?

Content creators are experimenting with their creativity and to showcase their creative side, they need better equipment. This is where gimbals come into play. The primary purpose of a gimbal is to stabilize images/videos. Many modern cameras are equipped with Electronic Image Stabilization (EIS) but still most of them don’t provide stable footage. Take GoPro’s flagship cameras for example, GoPro Hero 5 Black does support video stabilization but it is far from ideal. Then came the Hero 6 Black and it was said to have a “Gimbal-Like” stabilization. Although with Hero 6 Black GoPro did improve the stabilization a lot but comparing it with a gimbal was a far cry.

Back in 2016, GoPro also introduced their own iteration of 3-axis Gimbal called the Karma Grip. It was a part of their Karma Drone which had a modular design and could be used as a stand-alone gimbal. However, it came with a $300 price tag (Amazon). Hence, there was a need for cheaper alternatives. This is where FeiyuTech G5 comes into play.

FeiyuTech is a Chinese company which has been making camera accessories for quite a sometime and they launched G5 at a price of $199 (Amazon). G5 is not only $100 cheaper than the karma Grip but also has a splash-proof body, which means, it can endure harsh environments pretty well.


 First Impressions & Unboxing of FeiyuTech G5

G5 comes with a very premium packaging with a minimalist approach. The front of the box boasts a GoPro Hero 5 Black mounted on G5. The list of supported cameras is provided on the lower-left side as well.

Once unboxed, the gimbal is snuck inside its carrying pouch which has a soft-fabric material for its protection. There is a 3000MAH user-replaceable battery in one of the cut-outs inside the box. Lastly, there is some pretty standard paperwork. Overall, FeiyuTech G5 provides a top-notch unboxing experience!


How to Operate FeiyuTech G5?

 It has 3 buttons on the front which includes a joystick for controlling the direction along with another button on the back for easy rotation. Once the camera is securely loaded and battery is inserted, pressing the power button for 3 seconds would bring the gimbal to life. It’s always a good practice to calibrate the gimbal by placing it horizontally on a flat surface and then starting the calibration through its app.

Next step is to download FeiyuTech’s app on your smartphone. It’s fairly functional but the UI needs to be improved. During our testing, it crashed more than twice.

We tested G5 with the GoPro Hero 5 Black and the difference in stabilization was very apparent from the start. The gimbal performed adequately well while walking at a normal to fast pace. There is also a dedicated button which can be pressed to initiate the “Selfie Mode”. It comes in very handy while vlogging.


Key Features of FeiyuTech G5

  • The sensitivity of the Joystick can be adjusted through the app
  • Time-lapse mode allows to set the start and end points along with it’s movement intervals.
  • One-touch selfie mode for quick Vlogging.
  • 8-hours of battery time.
  • It can charge the GoPro whilst recording, although it reduced the battery time to 3-hours.
  • Rugged build quality with a sturdy grip.
  • Splash-Proof, can be used under light rain.
  • Micro-USB charging.

Verdict 

 FeiyuTech G5 is priced $100 less than the Karma grip yet it performs extremely well. The overall built quality is also top-notch. There are a few nuisances though, putting on the camera takes a bit of practice and patience, as you need to screw/unscrew the front plate manually. This has left some marks on the front display of our GoPro Hero 5 Black.

Secondly, it is charged via Micro-usb port which means that you would have to carry 2 separate cables i.e. Usb-c for your GoPro and Micro-Usb for G5. Lastly, FeiyuTech’s app definitely needs some attention as it needs to be more intuitive and crash-free.

Apart from all these nuances, FieyuTech G5 is a very capable competitor of GoPro Karma Grip and performs just as well, if not better.


Overall rating ★★★★ [Recommended by YourTechDose]


 

How to Choose the Best Portable Charger?


In this booming era of smart phones and accessories, everyone is striving to stay online and connected with their social network. However, with more apps and on-screen time, smartphone’s battery drains in no time. Hence, many tech companies have started offering their own iterations of Portable chargers aka power banks.

Companies like Xiaomi, Anker and RavPower are some of the leading manufacturers of power banks. These companies have also managed to make other battery powered accessories like Bluetooth speakers, headphones, stabilization gimbals etc.

Skeptics argue that the market for portable chargers has been saturated and going to decline soon. With the plethora of choices, it gets really hard to choose the right power bank that suits your needs. Your Tech Dose is going to make it easier.


 

What to consider before buying a Power Bank?

To start with, one should always consider their phone size and its battery life. Smartphones with bigger screens tend to have bigger batteries and therefore need a higher capacity power bank. In case your smartphone constantly dies halfway through the day, then you would need something portable to carry around every day.

The following pointers cover many important things to consider for opting a power bank.

  • Usage Frequency: The more it is, the more you would have to carry around. Hence, choose the one which is less bulky with a decent Battery Power like Xiaomi Mi 10,400mAh.
  • Number of Devices: If you carry multiple phones that needs to be charged often, then it’s better to go for something with at least 2 USB Ports with a minimum capacity 20,000mAh.
  • Portability: If you’re always on-the-go and need something light and small for your handbag. Choose the portable chargers that has a capacity of around 5000mAh. They usually take longer to charge and you would have to re-charge them more frequently.
  • Bulkiness: Although it might not sound that important, but it could be a deal breaker for many. Essentially, weight of the power bank is dependent on a number of factors like its internal components, battery capacity and built materials.

Best Performing Power Banks

 In order to rate the performance of a power bank, it’s important to see it’s rated capacity (MAH), physical size and number of charging ports. Having a fast charging capability is a big plus point as well. Without further ado, let’s have a look at our best-rated portable chargers.

  1. Xiaomi Mi Power Bank Pro 10,000mAh     Rating: ★★★★★

It offers a perfect balance of Portability and Productivity. Capable of charging iPhone 7 up to 4 times. Equipped with a USB-C for fast re-charging (only input though).

  1. Anker PowerCore 26800mAh     Rating: ★★★★★                                                                            

Apart from its bulky design, this power bank has no short-comings. It features 3x USB-A and 2x Micro-USB ports. Needless to say, PowerCore is capable of fast charging 3 devices simultaneously! It’s not only capable of charging smart phones but also small laptops like the latest MacBook! Interestingly, this beast can be recharged by plugging in two Micro-USB cables together, making it reach 100% battery from 0 in just 7-hours!

  1. Xiaomi Power Bank 20,000mAh     Rating: ★★★★

Despite being 20,000 mAh, it has a very minimal footprint as compared to other chargers from its league. It’s equipped with 2 USB-A ports, capable of charging 2 devices simultaneously. It doesn’t support either fast charging or fast recharging.

  1. RAVPower 26800mAH Power Bank     Rating:  ★★★

RAVPower has been around for a long time. They have been known for making multi-purpose power banks. However, this one is the heavy-duty beast capable of charging 3 devices simultaneously. It is also less bulky than most of its competitors, however, it doesn’t support fast charging!

  1. Anker PowerCore 5000mAh     Rating: ★★★

This is ideal for anyone who has to carry their portable chargers every day. Its capable of charging iPhone 7 twice through its high-power 2A charging output. The only downside is its scratch prone surface.


Verdict

Despite all these recommendations, it all boils down to your needs and overall use. If you find your phone running out of power often, then portability should be your prime concern. However, if you want something for occasional travelling then a mix between portability and higher capacity would be ideal. In essence, 10,000mAh power banks suit most of the people considering their slimmer bodies and decent charging capacity.


 

Samsung T5: World’s Fastest Portable SSD?


Samsung recently unveiled the successor to the famous T3 Portable Solid-State Drive (SSD). The new line-up is called T5 (not sure why they skipped T4 though). It comes in two colors and 4 different memory capacities. 250GB & 500GB comes in light blue color whereas 1TB and 2TB comes with a Deep Black color.


Highlights of Samsung T5

Our test unit is the 500GB T5 which comes in “alluring blue” color. At the time of the review, it is available for $170 on Amazon.

  • Read and Write Speeds of 540MB/s
  • Comes with USB-C input
  • Includes USB Type-C to C and USB Type-C to A Cables
  • Shock Resistant Frame
  • 3-Year Limited Warranty
  • Compatible with Mac OS and Windows PC
  • Password Protection and AES 256-bit encryption

Performance of Samsung T5

Samsung T5 500GB performance on Mac
Samsung T5 500GB performance on Mac

During the testing with MacBook Pro 2015, T5 managed to give an average write speed of 415MB/s and the Read Speed of 425MB/s. Although, this is slower than their claimed speed of up to 540 MB/s, but still it is fast enough to edit a 4K File on Pro Res. To put it into perspective, a file of 30GB/s was transferred in 110 Seconds to the SSD. Its staggering performance is largely due to the superior components used in its hardware. Overall, it’s performance was quite impressive!


Software of Samsung T5

T5 comes preloaded with Mac OS and Windows compatible software. It’s a proprietary software which can be used to set the password and update its software as well. The setup is fairly simple and hardly takes a minute. It’s a well-thought out software with no complication what so ever.


 Alternatives of Samsung T5

The market for portable SSDs is very saturated with some well-established players like WD, SanDisk and Seagate. All of them are offering very impressive products. One of the prime competitors for Samsung T5 is WD’s My Passport SSD which is a few bucks cheaper and promises to deliver the similar read and write speeds. However, it all boils down to the durability and overall user experience.


Verdict on Samsung T5

During the extensive tests and performance measures, T5 performed pretty well. Although, it didn’t fulfill the 540MB/s Read/Write claim of Samsung, but still it was blazing fast and transferring large files was no issue at all. It definitely is one of the fastest portable SSDs currently available in the market!


 

Buyers Guide: Sony PS4 vs. PS4 Pro


Back in 2016, Sony launched the mid-life upgrade to its popular PS4 console. It not only introduced the PS4 Slim which essentially packed similar features in a much smaller footprint, but also introduced the PS4 Pro. PS4 Pro boasted a significant upgrade for enthusiast gamers. To begin with, it promised to deliver 4K gaming with High Dynamic Range (HDR). Furthermore, a number of existing titles were said to get updates in order to support 4K playback. This took the console gaming on a spin as it was going to be the first gaming console capable of 4K gaming.


Differences between PS4 and PS4 Pro

 PS4 comparison ChartCourtesy: trustedreviews.com

Talking about the difference in physical size, PS4 Pro is about 20% bigger than the original PS4. Its dimensions are 29.5 x 32.7 x 5.5 cm as compared to original PS4’s 27.5 x 30.5 x 5.3 cm. However, the difference in weight between original PS4 and PS4 Pro is negligible. Hence, it shouldn’t be a deal breaker.


Talking Teraflops and Performance

 Sony took a great pride in announcing the exponential increase in the Teraflops of PS4 Pro over the original PS4. In essence, Teraflops is the measure of computing performance, hence, higher the better. However, in order to see a real difference, other components should be taken into account as well. For instance, PS4 Pro has similar memory as the original PS4 i.e. 8GB GDDR5, however, it has an extra 1GB of memory reserved for non-gaming applications and processes, making it easier to multi-task.

Apart from its efficient GPU, the PS4 Pro also has a faster CPU which is clocked at 2.1GHz instead of original PS4’s 1.6GHz. It’s also compatible with dual band Wi-Fi for steady connections for online gaming. Hence, all these features, makes it a much better console than its original counterpart.


 What is HDR? Why does it matter?

High Dynamic Range (HDR) is basically a tool to make the picture brighter, vibrant and life-like. Overall the range of contrast between dark and bright levels is enhanced. It makes a huge difference as it provides a more immersive experience and details of the surroundings. Many games like Battlefield 1, Fifa 2017 & 2018 have been updated to support 4K HDR and they look phenomenal on a HDR-supported TV like the Sony’s 4K HDR TV.


Should you get a PS4 or PS4 Pro?

Whilst PS4 is a very capable gaming console, it has started to show its age. With new titles becoming larger than life and utilizing every possible processing unit, it is better to go for the PS4 Pro. Even if you don’t have a 4K or HDR TV, PS4 Pro performs smoothly and multi-tasking is a breeze. It’s a good way of future-proofing your gaming hardware. However, if you are tight on budget then PS4 Slim is also a decent buy and costs $100 less than its Pro counterpart. YourTechDose recommends PS4 Pro over PS4!


 

 

DJI Spark: The Best Portable Drone?


Recently YTD got hands on the DJI Spark Combo package. The combo package comes with a lot of extra goodies at a $200 premium over the simple Spark. First thing we noticed was the absolutely minimal footprint of Spark. If you think Mavic Pro was small, then you need to check out the Spark in person. The weight and dimensions of Spark makes it a perfect go-to drone for beginners. Despite its tiny foot print, it packs a lot of tech and sensors. From tracking movements to avoiding obstacles, it has covered all the latest features. After spending a month with the device and testing it both indoors and outdoors, we noticed a number of impressive and not-so-impressive things about this little drone.


Inside the DJI Spark Combo Package

  1. DJI Spark
  2. Remote Controller with up to 2 km signal range
  3. 2 Batteries (1480 mAh)
  4. Propeller guards
  5. 2 sets of propellers
  6. 3-Slot battery charging dock
  7. Micro-USB charging cable
  8. Battery charger adapter
  9. DJI branded carrying bag for controller and its accessories
  10. DJI branded Styrofoam case for the Spark, Propellers and 2 extra batteries

Flying Experience of Spark

There are a number of ways to fly the Spark. Since the basic Spark does not come up with the remote controller, therefore, it can be launched right from your palm and controlled through hand gestures. Although it sounds awesome but it’s more of a hassle to fly it with hand gestures. Another way of controlling spark is through DJI GO 4 app on an iOS or Android device. However, the flying distance would be limited to 100 meters and height to 50 meters. In order to take full advantage of Spark’s capabilities and to experience a more stable signal quality, Your Tech Dose highly recommends getting the Spark controller. It not only extends its range up to 2 KM but also ensures a steady signal. Not to mention, having a physical controller is much more intuitive than using virtual joysticks on the DJI GO 4 app.


Using DJI Spark indoors

Although Spark is not marketed as an indoor drone, but in our indoor flights, it performed surprisingly well. Most of the times it was getting between 10-13 GPS signals under the roof, and its stability was hardly compromised while flying without GPS (Atti Mode). Thanks to its advance sensors and obstacle avoidance features, DJI Spark exceeded all our expectations in the indoor flights. However, it is highly recommended to use propeller guards and maintain a safe distance from the device while flying indoors.


Battery Life of Spark

There are a number of factors that influence the battery performance of Spark. While flying outdoors, it is important to keep a check on wind speed and heat levels. From our experience, in moderate wind speed of 15-20 Km/h, Spark did a pretty good job of maintaining its position and capturing stable footage. However, it resulted in a battery loss of about 60 to 80 seconds. As far as the heat levels go, Spark provided the best battery time around dusk (25 Degrees Celsius) when it wasn’t as hot as mid-day (35 Degrees Celsius). Lastly, using propeller guards also reduced the flying time by 60-70 seconds.

On average, DJI Spark gave a flying time of 13 minutes on a single charge. 2 new batteries were used to test the above mentioned flying time.


Gimbal & Camera Quality of the DJI Spark

The camera of Spark is more of a mixed bag. DJI makes a lot of consumer drones with 3-axis gimbal for stabilization, however, due to the minimal size of the DJI Spark, they could only fit 2-axis gimbal. It performs pretty well most of the times, however, there have been a few instances, where a significant jerk was felt while panning it from one side to the other.

Furthermore, Spark has the 1/2.3” CMOS image sensor capable of taking 12MP stills, and the video resolution of up to 1080P at 30 FPS. It would have been much appreciated if DJI would have managed to provide 60 FPS video.

By today’s standards, the video quality is just average, however, one thing that Spark really excels at, is its remarkable image quality. The 4K sensor certainly provides a much crispier photo with a nice level of photo saturation.


Verdict on Spark’s performance

Spark offers a lot of amazing features in a small package. Although the video quality is not as good as some other drones, however, the portability and overall user experience makes it the best drone in its price.


 

Apple TV Finally Offers 4K HDR

Apple has just unveiled the latest Apple TV which finally supports 4K and HDR and provides an extensive coverage of various TV apps like Netflix and Amazon. Furthermore, it would also bring new features like integration of live sports and reminders of upcoming sport events.

Apple TV A10X Chip
Apple TV A10X Chip

Upgrades in the New Apple TV

  • 4K & HDR Support
  • A10X chip, same as the latest iPad Pro 10.5″ or the iPad Pro 12.9″
  • Free upgrade of existing HD users to 4K content
  • Buy 4K content at the price of HD
  • New gaming capabilities and a plethora of new TV apps
  • Completely redesigned User Interface & User Experience

More updates coming soon…

Samsung all set to launch Galaxy Note 8!


Samsung has sent invites for the exclusive event to be held on August 23, in which they will unveil the all new Galaxy Note 8. After last year’s devastating battery issue with the Note 7, Samsung did not only halt the production but also had to Call-back the existing units. Many skeptics believed that was the end of the Note lineup, but apparently, Samsung wants to continue the Note series.


Expect Big from Galaxy Note 8?

Starting with the aesthetics, a number of rumors have already pointed towards slimmer bezels and a bigger display. According to Gsmarena, The Note 8 would most probably have a 6.4” QHD Screen with 6GB of Ram and Snapdragon 835 chipset. These promising specs would definitely ensure that the Note 8 would be able to handle pretty much all the apps with ease. Hopefully, it would also have a bigger battery to power the beast.

According to the current rumors, it will be the first Samsung flagship phone to have dual lens camera system. Furthermore, it will probably be a combination of 12 and 8MP lenses, however, there are no details on the aperture and camera sensor.


Geekbench Comparison of Note 8 with iPhone 7 Plus

Your Tech Dose has also managed to get the Geekbench scores of alleged Note 8 (SM-N9500) (Courtesy: Gsmarena). It definitely performed great on the both Single and Multi-Core tests. We also took the liberty to compare it to the score of its arch rival, iPhone 7 Plus. iPhone 7 outperforms pretty much any current phone on the Single Core, however, Note 8 took the lead on the Multi-Core test!

iPhone 7 Plus vs. Galaxy Note 8 geekbench score
iPhone 7 Plus vs. Galaxy Note 8

Your Tech Dose will update the review once the phone is officially launched next week on August 23. Mark your calenders!