Spark Mobile Phone Video Amplifier REVIEW Home Cinema
While perusing Facebook, I often find advertisements for products and enjoy the little video demonstrations. I do not know if these are unique to me or if they are blasted en masse. Either way, I have recently coveted a mini lathe, a 3D-printer, a contour gauge, a neat gun holster, and lately a mobile phone video amplifier. As someone who suffers from and fears buyers remorse, I admit I bought into the advertisement and I violated my discipline to avoid impulse buys. Thanks to Paypal, I ordered the device and then waited patiently for it to arrive a few weeks later. The Mobile Phone Video Amplifier arrived in a 7 5/8 inches wide by 10 3/8 inches tall by 9/16 inches thick retail box. The main centerpiece of the cover was the 5 3/4 inches wide by 2 7/8 inches tall image of the portable home cinema displaying a crisp, vivid, image of a surfer. Along the bottom left, there was a 4 5/8 inches wide by 3 1/8 inches tall photograph quality image of a couple who appeared to be watching a horror film. The midline image of a surfer ripping into a barrel wave did not warrant the expression of shock and awe represented in the couple, which I thought to be a little odd. The streaked blue background contrasted beautifully with the wooden pine amplifier base, almost appearing like beams of sunlight diffusing through the water. The company did a great job with the cover, the use of the imagery and even the generic title worked. The top, left side and bottom panels were devoid of writing/imagery and the back/right side showcased three color options: white, pine and walnut. The useful reverse panel provided a larger view of the color options and listed the product specifications. To best enjoy the PMMA/Fiberboard mobile phone screen amplifier, you should view the screen from about 2–3 meters away. The image on the 12-inch screen should increase the size of your phone by roughly three to four times.
Within the packaging, I found a 7 5/8 inches wide by 10 1/4 inches long by 1/4 inches thick black, wood-grained device. Additionally, within the box, I found a 2 1/2 x 2 1/2 inches cardboard screen stop and a bilingual instruction manual. To utilize the device, fold the device out fully, stand the lens up using the crease within the base, add the lens stop plate and then fold the phone rest into place. Using a combination of Asian character symbols/choppy English, the instruction manual proved to be a little cumbersome. The device utilized similar technology to projection screens, yet it did not place any strain on the battery inside your phone. It should work with all sizes of phones but will not work with tablets, based on their size. Placing my iPhone XS Max onto the phone rest, I was excited to find that it did amplify the screen size by the promised amount.
The device had cardboard colored wedges that were cut into the surface, which allowed me to fold it into the viewing position and then flat again. The Trapper-Keeper like device protected the lens with the back layer of cardboard. To access the lens, fold the back flap away and then fold the screen outward. The dual-purpose flap protected the screen and ultimately became the phone stand. I liked that the stand had a single configuration and did not confuse the user with multiple positions. Placing the phone upon the stand, I turned to my Xfinity App to watch “The Curse of Oak Island,” “Big Bang Theory,” and the last episode of “Vikings.” I then turned to Amazon Prime Video and watched “Star Trek,” and “Star Trek Beyond.” Lastly, I synced my BliTZWOlF over-ear headphones to my iPhone XS Max and watched “Bohemian Rhapsody,” using the Movies Anywhere App. Since I have grown accustomed to the phablet screen of my iPhone XS Max, I was impressed when the device upgraded my experience to iPad pro size. The screen was not as crisp as watching it directly from my iPad Pro 10.5″ but it was a neat option to watch movies/TV. The prismatic screen will pick up ambient light and will cause you to see a cone of light coming toward you. I would recommend turning off the lights behind the phone to improve the viewing experience. The device sat perfectly on my end table and allowed me to view the movies while lying in bed. The photographs do not do the device service, as it proved difficult to photograph through the screen. I enjoyed the option to increase the size of web pages/kindle, etc. This device may be perfect for people with vision issues. Visually, the screen looked better to my naked eye than through the captured images.
I did not feel that the screen lock was well implemented because it caused the device to sit cattywampus. There needed to be two screen locks, to allow the device to sit flush on the surface. This would have also allowed the screen locks to act as a wedge for the front, which could allow the user to adjust the viewing angle in the y-axis. Perhaps a screw-out-spacer, like those seen on projectors, could have been implemented. Overall, I enjoyed the device more than I expected and was pleased with my purchase. The ability to fold the device flat again was convenient but some type of locking-stay or an elastic band/strap would have been useful. Slide the device into your backpack, into your Timbuk2 Messenger bag or another carry bag and enjoy a larger viewing experience.
Originally published at macsources.com on February 19, 2019.