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Review: Western Digital Blue 1TB Solid-State Drive (SSD)

Western Digital (WD) has been successful in the storage industry for many years and is also one of the few manufacturers left. Some of the well-known HDD that WD has produced over the years are the Black series for performance, Blue series for mainstream PC, Red series for NAS and etc. Late last year, they had also ventured into the solid-state drive segment. There was not much publicity done, at least not one that I have seen so far.

On 1 Nov 16, WD introduced both the WD Blue and WD Green SSD,  offering consumers with more options. SSD is slowly replacing HDD as it now cost less than S$0.60/GB compared to a few years ago. Many people are now adopting SSD simply because of the speed it offers as well as the less space it requires. You can easily stack 8 SSD into a mATX PC versus to 4 HDD. 

The WD Blue SSD is available in both 2.5″ SATA (7mm)  and M.2 2280 (NVMe) form factor, and capable of up to 400 Terabytes Written (TBW). It offers up to 545MB/s and 525MB/s of sequential read and write speeds, in different capacities – 250GB (S$139), 500GB (S$259) and 1TB (S$499). Locally, it comes with 3-year limited warranty.

WD Blue 1TB_1     WD Blue 1TB_2

WD Blue SSD is built using the 2nd generation TLC flash node, and features SLC cache technology.

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Review: Comprehensive Exterior & Interior Detailing by EA Detailer

I have been driving my K3 for slightly past 1.5 years and felt that it was time for a good IMG_7942clean-up. Surfing through Facebook, I came across EA Detailer and started reading the reviews by their customers. After procrastinating for a few weeks, I finally decided to contact them to arrange for an appointment. They were really responsive, and responded to my queries promptly even at wee hours like 11+ PM. Out of so many detailing providers out there, the main reason why I have chosen EA Detailer is due to their 3-Stage Interior Sanitisation with Anti-Pest Treatment. It is important to keep the car clean especially when you have a little kid. While you may try as much to minimise your little one from eating in the car, I will say it is impossible to prevent. Hence, it is inevitable that the car will have little bites and crumbs, and even regular vacuum will not be able to remove them fully. And the outcome is.. ? Little roaches will start to run across in the car!

I had a good impression when I arrived at the workshop. There was a parking lot assigned to me. While this may not be a big deal, it is through the small details and actions that they bother to take care of which will set out the differences. I was greeted warmly by Victor, and he proceeded to explain with patience on the processes that my car would be undergoing for the day. i.e: 3-Stage Exterior Glow and 3-Stage Interior Sanitisation with Anti-Pest Treatment. Then he proceeded to inspect the car conditions for existing damages and scratches (if any), and provided a report. Then together with Jackson, the Bay Manager, they checked on the existing gloss and lacquer thickness of the car paint. Personally, I felt this was good and could prevent any disputes in the event if there were any accidents subsequently.

IMG_7862     IMG_7877     IMG_7907

IMG_7894     IMG_7924     IMG_7938

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Review: Gel Manicure and Pedicure at Casamia

It has been almost a year since I last went for manicure and pedicure services as they tend to not last beyond 2 weeks (yes,even for gel manicure).

And given the market price of classic gel mani/pedi, it makes it harder for me to spend over $100 bucks for gel mani and pedi that can only last for 2 weeks. Hence, I checked out groupon deals on mani/pedi services since they offer great deals with great customer service from time to time. I have to agree that purchasing mani/pedi deals off these deal websites are all about luck. I have had great experiences as well as mediocre experiences with manicurists who just wants to get it over and done with with the customers who purchased the groupon deals.

Casamia is one that I feel that regular walk-in customers do not differ from customers who were on groupon deals. Conveniently located at bugis cube (just across Bugis Junction), it has a nice and classy ambience which makes one feel relaxed throughout the session. Most importantly, I was amazed with the nail art templates that were displayed in the shop. Not only was the display of a wide variety, the designs were impressive as you can see the passion and skills of the manicurist.

     

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Review: QNAP TS-453 Pro (TurboNAS) – First Time Setup

I have been wanting to upgrade my existing 2 x D-Link Network Attached Storage (NAS), DNS-320 & DNS-323, into a 4-Bay NAS for quite some time. This would allow me to move from RAID1 into RAID5 for better data protection assurance and performance. I did some market research and shortlisted 2 models, 1) QNAP TS-453 Pro and 2) Synology DS415+. Both NAS have been released for quite a while and are the popular models for home office usage. It was pretty hard for me to decide which to go for either. QNAP concentrates more on hardware performances while Synology provides better software user-friendliness.

QNAS TS-453 Pro     Synology DS415+

In the end, I decided hardware over software in hope that QNAP would invest more effort to improve its software delivery. Who knows I may switch to Synology in future?

But for now, I will concentrate my review on the QNAP TS-453 Pro. The NAS is available in 2 configurations for the memory, 2GB and 8GB, with the rest of the hardware specifications remaining the same. I chose the former as I would be upgrading the memory on my own to 16GB instead. I would be equipping it with 4 x 4TB Seagate NAS HDD (ST4000VN000) and 2 x 8GB Crucial DDR3L-1600 SODIMM Memory.

The Complete Package

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Review: Step 2 Fresh Accents Kitchen

A kitchen set is a must-have for all children regardless of age and gender. We started noticing Ashley’s interest in cooking toys when she was attending Saturday lessons at Leap Schoolhouse prior to attending full day preschool. The Step 2 Fresh Accents Kitchen is not the first set of cooking play we have gotten for the little one. As with most parents, it is hard to make impulse buys of Step 2 Kitchen given the price tag in Singapore.

Step 2 Fresh Accents Kitchen

Hence, we started off with simple kitchen and supermarket toy sets sold at Baby Fairs and Kiddy Palace which cost us a quarter or less of a Step 2 Kitchen. However, quality does comes with a price as we soon see with the earlier toy sets we bought for Ashley. As opposed to the pictures of the toys shown on the packaging which appear sturdy and rather decent, it came as a dismay to us when one of the fridge door was made of flimsy plastic combined with what seemingly looked like a transparency slide in the middle and dysfunctional knobs for the cooking hob which had to be turned at a specific angle to work.

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