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20th Oct 2012 | 07:00
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This week we've got the definitive verdict on Amazon's new Kindle Fire HD 7-inch, while we've also updated our Hands on review of the hottest Windows 8 tablet around - the Microsoft Surface which goes on sale next week for £399.
We've also checked out one of hottest bridge cameras around - the Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ200.
While the standard Kindle Fire has been lightly revised and reissued to actually make it to Britain for a mere £129, the new Kindle Fire HD is Amazon's true effort to fight off the Nexus 7 and upcoming Nook HD. With a totally new build, notably enhanced display, and front-facing camera, it's a marked enhancement over the original Fire model, but are Amazon's custom UI and ecosystem still holding it back for power users?
Whereas the base Kindle Fire model sports a rather clunky, utilitarian build, the HD feels smoothed out – it's a little taller (7.6 inches vs 7.44) and notably wider (5.4 inches vs 4.72) when held in portrait orientation, though it's also slightly slimmer (0.4 inches vs 0.45). Weight-wise, it drops only .2 oz to 13.9.
Black, bevelled and beautifully designed; has Microsoft actually got a decent iPad competitor in its Windows RT-toting Surface tablet?
Magnesium chassis, vapour deposition coating, cutaway edges, ClearType HD display; the design credentials and the specs for the Microsoft Surface Windows RT tablet are impressive. In the flesh this is a delightful piece of hardware that looks good – and is practical too.
Bridge cameras are perhaps sometimes unfairly dismissed as not being tools for 'proper photographers'. Perhaps what this niche has needed is a newcomer to storm onto the scene with a specification list that will make all the dedicated DSLR users out there do a double-take.
Perhaps the Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ200 is that camera.
With an impressive list of numbers and features, the Panasonic FZ200 could very well be the first small bridge camera to truly make DSLR owners - or those thinking about upgrading to a DSLR - rethink their plans.
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