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Jorge Velez - Roman Birds Music Album Reviews

Inspired by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius, this five-track ambient wonder finds the New York producer letting pulses and motifs overlap until the tracks resemble the inside of a lava lamp.
Jorge Velez has long been prolific, but that’s been especially true in the past few years. Like many underground electronic musicians, the New York producer has taken advantage of the internet’s self-publishing opportunities—in particular, the direct-to-fans platform Bandcamp—to sidestep label gatekeepers, streaming services, and crowded retailers. (Velez’s Bandcamp page currently numbers 26 releases.) Velez first gained recognition a dozen years ago with blippy disco derivatives for labels like Italians Do It Better, but his output has gradually become more esoteric and inward-looking. He’s still capable of ebullient club tracks, as last year’s excellent Forza attests, but many of his long, undulating machine jams sound like late-night missives to himself.

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Nokia 8110 4G Review: Hands-on

Nokia 8110 4G Review: Hands-on
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MWC might usually be about smartphones and other high-end gadgets but a feature phone has caused quite a big of hype. HMD has re-launched the Nokia phone seen in The Matrix. Here we go hands-on with the Nokia 8110 4G. 

Let’s face it, sometimes old things are cooler than new one and although the Nokia 8110 4G is technically a new phone, it’s another example of the firm bringing back a classic.

Following the Nokia 3310, this is the second ‘retro classic reloaded’ and although it’s been 22 years, the Nokia 8110 is back.


PRICE AND RELEASE DATE 

Although Nokia’s other new phones, like the 8 Sirocco are coming in April, the 8110 4G is arriving a bit later. It has a fairly loose release date of May. 

According to mobilephonehistory.co.uk the original 8110 was priced at £200, but the new 4G model won’t cost you that much in 2018. It will arrive at 79 Euros, or around £70/$100.

So it’s very cheap phone, like the 3310, and will make a decent option for those looking for a feature phone in situations like festivals or perhaps for an elderly user.


DESIGN AND BUILD

In a similar vain to the Nokia 3310, the new Nokia 8110 is similar in design to the original, yet tweaked so it’s also quite different. And yes, this is the phone used by Neo in the first Matrix movie! 

Gone is the original stumpy antenna sticking out the top, as you would imagine, and the buttons are a new design also. They’re much flatter and all very close together where the original had separate keys. There’s now a D-pad instead of the up and down buttons from before.

The 8110 4G is still curved in shape and fits around your head very well. After all, this phone is designed for calls unlike smartphones. Of course, the curved banana shape means that it doesn’t sit nicely on a desk or in your pocket but you can spin it round helicopter style for enjoyment.

Also true to the original is the slide out cover that hides the buttons when shut. It’s got a smooth and quite satisfying action so you’ll no doubt find your self opening and closing it over and over again just for fun.

It’s not just for protection either, as you can legitimately use the cover to answer and end phone calls. Does it get more hipster than that?


This new model is a fair bit thinner and lighter than the original – 14.9mm vs 25mm and 117g vs 152g.

A banana phone wouldn’t be a proper banana phone without coming in the aptly named Banana Yellow. As you can see it’s not the kind of handset you’re going to lose easily, but does also come in Traditional Black if you want that Matrix style. 

SPECS AND FEATURES

One of the biggest and obvious differences between this 4G 8110 and the original is the more modern screen. It’s a bit bigger at 2.4in and offers colour instead of monochrome. 

It’s curved and isn’t touchscreen but has a reasonable QVGA resolution (240×320). There’s no IPS technology at this price so TN is understandable but means not the best viewing angles.


In terms of the slightly boring specs, the new 8110 4G runs on a Qualcomm Snapdragon 205 – that’s a 1.1GHz dual-core that’s got plenty of power to run Snake.

The phone also has 512MB of RAM, 4GB of storage and some basic things like Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.1, GPS and a microUSB port.

In terms of modern features, the standout is 4G support and the ability to use the 8110 for VoLTE – or voice over LTE calls. You can also share that data connection via a Wi-Fi hotspot so the 8110 could be a good phone to use as a secondary device. 

Yes, there’s a camera but it’s a pretty dismal 2Mp so don’t expect anything every remotely putting on Instragram unless you want a really retro look.




Although the battery is 1500mAh – pretty small for 2018 smartphones – this is a feature phone so doesn’t guzzle power in the same way. In fact, Nokia says it will last a whopping 25 days on standby.

In usage you’ll get over nine hours of VoLTE calls, six hours of video playback (not that you would) and 48 hours of mp3 playback. 

There’s no Google Play store here so you can’t just download all the apps you’d normally use on your Android smartphone but the 8110 does have an app store in the Smart Feature OS which includes the likes of Facebook, Twitter, Google Maps and Google Assistant. 

It wouldn’t be a reimagined classing without Snake so that’s pre-loaded.

SPECS

  • Networks: 2G: 900/1800, 3G: WB-CDMA 1/5/8/39, 4G: FDD-LTE 1/3/5/7/8/20, TDD-LTE 39/40/41/(38)
  • OS: Smart Feature OS
  • Chipset: Qualcomm 205 Mobile Platform (Dual Core 1.1 GHz)
  • RAM: 512MB
  • Storage: 4GB
  • Display: 2.4-inch QVGA display, curved display
  • Camera: 2MP rear camera
  • Connectivity: Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, BT 4.1, GPS/AGPS, micro USB 2.0, 3.5mm headphone jack
  • Battery: 1500mAh
  • FM radio
  • Audio playback file formats: AAC, AMR, MP3, MIDI, Vorbis
  • Micro SIM slot
  • 14.9mm
  • 117g

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