For nearly 15 years, Reviewed.com has tested thousands of products, all to help consumers buy, use, and understand electronics, appliances, and now cars.
This week we tested Canon’s entry-level Rebel SL1, the 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee with a turbodiesel engine, a hybrid TV/monitor, and more. We also published a bunch of features about hybrid tablets, unnecessary camera accessories, and the curious history of Chinese food on Christmas.
Canon Rebel SL1 Digital Camera Review
The Rebel SL1 is something of a statement from Canon. As an affordable, easy-to-use mid-range DSLR, it’s certainly an entry level shooter, but its highly compact design seems to rebuff the idea that DSLRs are dead. Rather, the SL1 is an argument for a world with mirrorless cameras and DSLRs living side by side.
Unfortunately, the SL1 (MSRP $749.99 w/ 18-55mm IS STM lens) is virtually devoid of exciting new technology, and scored few high marks for performance. But the appeal of the SL1 is in its intended use and its low price tag. Essentially sacrificing only the swivel screen of the upmarket T5i, it's a great, supremely compact choice for a student or novice. But if your needs are greater, you’d be wise to check out the competition.
2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee Diesel: SUV, Meet MPG
The Jeep Grand Cherokee is an iconic American vehicle—a symbol of power, economy, and rugged versatility. This year’s model received a bit of a facelift—with four-wheel drive, an easy-to-use Garmin navigation system, and sleek cluster design. But the real head-turner is the optional 3.0-liter turbodiesel V6 engine, which dramatically ramps up the Cherokee’s otherwise dismal fuel economy. Over a week of mixed highway and city driving, we averaged an impressive 23.2 mpg.
Of course, that kind of mileage comes with a price tag. The least expensive diesel option is the $41,590 Limited 4x2, while the base Laredo with a gas V6 stickers for $28,995. Price aside, the diesel option is a wise choice for power, efficiency, and luxury.
LG 29LN450W UltraWide TV Review
The LG 29LN450W UltraWide (MSRP $649.99) can’t seem to decide if it’s a TV or computer monitor—and it loses points because of that ambiguity. While we appreciated the support for the 21:9 aspect ratio (similar to movie theater screens), $650 for a 29-inch television is ridiculous in today's market. At the same time, $650 for a flexible 29-inch monitor is fair—hence the LN450W’s identity crisis. Even the port array seems to swing both ways, with HDMI, component, and coaxial connections (for TVs), and DisplayPort and DVI inputs (for PCs).
If you’re in the market for a large monitor, or even a display that can function as both TV and monitor, the LN450W is worth your consideration. While something of a hybrid device, it functions best as a monitor. However, if you’re simply looking for a TV—even a small one—look elsewhere.
Kenmore 51132 Refrigerator Review
The Kenmore 51132 (MSRP $1,529.99) is affordable (Sears retails it for about $1,300) for a side-by-side fridge. It boasts decent interior space and optimal energy efficiency, but neither of those perks were enough for us to overlook galling temperature inconsistencies, cramped shelving, and ineffective crisper drawers. Temperatures shifted almost a full degree-and-a-half in the fridge and nearly three degrees in the freezer. That’s pretty much unacceptable, and effectively nullifies some of the 51132’s advantages, such as efficiency and price.
Given the soaring popularity of tablet computers and the steep declines in PC sales, it’s easy to assume that the future of personal computing is entirely mobile. However, in an attempt to navigate some of the clunky operations associated with mobile (e.g. search, typing, and multitasking), tablets are beginning to look more like a fusion of the once-distinct worlds of mobile and PC.
In this story, we take a look at how the future of personal computing is likely to evolve into a wholly novel form that combines the best of both worlds.
In America, many Jews do a curious thing at Christmas: They go out for Chinese. But why? How did this tradition begin? The most obvious explanation is that Chinese restaurants are often the only eateries open on Christmas day, but the real answer is far more complex than that. In this story, we take a look at the cultural and historical link between Christmas, Judaism, and Chinese food.
Everyone, aside from the occasional Scrooge, loves holiday décor, even if they hate holiday music. It’s the time of year when people (thankfully) turn off the flashes on their cameras, and instead rely on the natural glow of Christmas lights to illuminate their photos.
In this feature, we take a look at some of the country’s best spots for holiday photography—from the Louisville MEGA Cavern to the mile-long Trail of Lights in Austin, Texas. It’s the saccharine pinnacle of Christmas cheer.
Photography is a gearhead's hobby. If you're serious about your craft, it's easy to spend more money on tripods, flashes, and battery grips than you spend on the actual camera and lenses. But many of the accessories pitched to new system camera buyers are pretty much worthless. Lucky for you, we're here to tell you what not to buy. Flimsy tripods, cheap filters, and conversion lenses all get pooh-poohed, but you might be surprised at what else made the list.