Sunday, October 11, 2009

Hasbro Star Wars AT-ST Legacy Collection

Hasbro released a new All Terrain - Scout Transport (AT-ST) as part of the Star Wars Legacy Collection. This new release is closer to the movie AT-ST. One omission is the hind leg support which in the actual studio model appears to be a metal spring. The wire support around the top of the AT-ST is also of a different shape. However, this AT-ST has a full range of articulation and for the first time, you can pose it in a squatting position, which is probably the position for boarding the AT-ST. There is also enough room inside the AT-ST for 2 figures to sit side by side. The view ports can also be opened. An AT-ST driver is included with this toy. You also get another set of chin turrets that fire projectiles (not shown in these pictures). The Hasbro AT-ST cost S$89.90 and is a little expensive.

AT-ST in squatting position. Figures from left - Sand trooper, Lt Janek Sunber (from the Janek Sunber & Amanin Comic Pack), & AT-ST Driver (included in this toy). The bottom of the AT-ST almost touches the ground with its the 2 bottom armour plates in this position. You can also pose it with its legs closer to the body and at a lower height which makes it very compact - a great way to store this toy.

Side view of the AT-ST in squatting position.

AT-ST driver aboard the AT-ST. The entire top (including the hatch) can be opened for 2 figures to be seated inside.

AT-ST squatting at a higher position.

At-ST at full height

This AT-ST is scaled quite nicely with the 3 3/4" figures.

The AT-ST is one of the taller Hasbro toys in the 3 3/4" range.

Close up of the AT-ST driver

Monday, September 07, 2009

Halo ODST ~ Launching soon...

For all fans of Halo...

Saturday, September 05, 2009

Gundam Fiesta Visit 1

I visited Gundam Fiesta 2009 on Friday after work. The exhibition took up less space than I expected. There was a series of static display panels showcasing the history of Gundam from the beginning. The history of Gundam is also available online at:
Gundam Wiki

I have been a fan of Gundam eversince my childhood days. Gundam was never shown on local television but I remember the cheap plastic models sold in my neighbourhood stores. These were relatively cheap for a schoolboy (relative to Star Wars Kenner figures of course). I remembered fixing them up unpainted and wondering what the anime was like. It was much later when I rented the Gundam OVA anime video tapes that I realised the actual story. Of course, when the internet came about, a whole lot of information on Gundam was made available. Of the entire Gundam universe, I am particularly fond of the Universal Century (U.C.) based stories. Gundam is credited to be the first anime to depart from the old "revenge" style giant robot stories with a monster a week. Instead, it presented a very long story about Amuro Ray (pilot of the prototype RX-78 Gundam) and the crew of White Base (a prototype mobile suit carrier).

The timeline of the first Gundam TV series was the year U.C.0079 and this was followed by Gundam Z and Gundam ZZ which showed events after that first series. Later releases were divided between those that deviate from this timeline or those that keep to the original timeline. However, central to all these releases was the idea of Newtypes.

All I had was my Nokia 6220 Classic; nevertheless, here are some shots of the event.

Main entrance of Gundam Fiesta 2009

RX-78 Gundam (Pilot: Amuro Ray)

MS-06 Zaku II (Pilot: Char Aznable)

History of Gundam Anime

Odaiba, Japan, 1/1 scale Gundam (life size in other words)

A life-sized foot print of the RX-78 Gundam was on display to provide a sense of scale

A model of the Odaiba Gundam

The first Gundam ainme - Mobile Suit Gundam

Mobile Suit Gundam Zeta

Mobile Suit Gundam 0080: War in the pocket

Gundam RX-79 NT-1 from War in the pocket

Mobile Suit Gundam 0083: Stardust Memories

Mobile Suit Gundam: The 08th MS Team

I believe these are the master wooden models for making the metal molds

The metal molds for injection molding

Prototype produced by Stereo Lithography; done with a kind of 3-d printer

Raw plastic

The first Gundam model

It's cool that they brought in these

A model of Bandai's injection molding factory

SD Gundam done in the Sanguo style. These are SD Gundams depicting characters from the Chinese novel The Three Kingdoms.

Bought some of these limited editions - will probably be back for more when they are released next week

Friday, September 04, 2009

Lego Airplane Mechanic 7901

Here's a little Lego set that I like. Its the Airplane Mechanic from the City theme range. You get quite a lot of tiny pieces of tools including a drip and an oil can (not in these pics). The jet engine should be similar to one of the passenger airplane sets. The design of the jet engine looks like a typical commercial jet turbofan.

Overall view of the set. The jet engine can be hoisted up using the ball-jointed hook.

Close up of the jet engine on the hoist. The turbofan blades can rotate and come in a metallic black color.

Another angle of the jet engine and the smiley mechanic.

The tools are stored on a rack.

A dolly is supplied to wheel the jet engine around.

Removing the compressor fan, you can see right through the jet engine.

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Grado Prestige Series Model SR60i

Bought a pair Grado Lab Prestige Series Model SR60i headphones for those times when I cannot blast my speakers. These are retro looking headphones but are often rated highly by various sources - just do a Google on Grado SR60i. Made in Brooklyn, New York.

They cost S$120 (excluding GST) in Singapore. I bought them from Jaben Network, Adelphi. The shop is run by a bunch of friendly folks who allow you to sample various headphones and headphone amps. After trying out both the SR80 and the SR60i, I found the SR80 sounded pretty powerful and has a wider feeling but not much different from the SR60i. I decided to get the SR60i as I found the sound to be "good enough" for my ears and save a few dollars - $50 to be exact.

Now, I am at home playing my collection of music and the clarity is amazing! The bass is punchy without sounding muddled. They fit well on my head and I found the full sponge to be comfortable. I can listen to this all day! I'm loving these headphones and would highly recommend them.

My wife loves them too. I wonder if I need to get another just so we won't fight for em.

The box is rather big but flat.

The box is sealed and opens like a flat cake box. You find the headphone with its thick soft cable, 3.5mm gold plated jack-plug and 6.3mm gold plated adaptor, foam padding and warranty sheet.

The retro looking can.

How it looks like out of the box. Looks old school but sounds amazing!

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Canon EOS 7D officially announced!

Its announced! Here's dpreview's hands on of the Canon EOS 7D.

DP review hands on of the Canon EOS 7D

I'll have to read this in detail. It sounds really promising!

Added a few more links:

Image Resource

Canon Special Site

It really looks promising. Some of the features that are great are:
1) New macro compensation of accidental movement toward / away from focused subject - i.e. 3 plane IS - up, down; sideways; in, out.
2) New 19 point cross sensor AF
3) New pentaprism viewfinder that is 100%
4) Wireless flash
5) Dedicated RAW / JPG button
6) Great HD video options - 1080p24 included as well as 720p60
7) 18 megapixels with no apparant increase in noise - which gives you more option of reducing apparent noise by reducing it to a lower resolution if you choose to
8) Cheaper than the EOS 5D Mk2

Monday, August 31, 2009

Gundam Fiesta 2009 in Singapore

For the first time in Singapore, Bandai will release some of the Gundam models in Singapore on the same date as in Japan. From 2 Sep 09 to 14 Sep 09, a series of exhibition and events will celebrate Gundam's 30th Anniversary. Yes, we do not have a live sized RX-78 Gundam like in Odaiba, Japan, but this comes a little closer I guess.

Link to official Gundam Fiesta website:
Gundam Fiesta 2009

Some highlights that are of interest to me are:
1) 1/60 Injection Machine Model - a model of the machine that makes all the Bandai plastic models

2) HGUC new releases such as the 1/144 HGUC RX-79(G) Gundam The Ground War Set - great for building dioramas as such

3) 2009 SG Gundam Image Girls wearing Gundam Costumes (5,6,12,13 Sep 09) - hmmm... I wonder what these are like

4) Meet Kawaguchi Sensei - a professional modeller

I'll probably pop by one of these days to check it out. Probably grab a few HGUC kits and the Injection Machine Model.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Canon EOS 7D rumours

Some leaked pictures of the new Canon EOS 7D has appeared on the internet. Exciting times if these are true. What got me excited are the following new features:
1) 18 megapixels
2) Dual DIGIC IV
3) 8 fps
4) New eight-directional double cross central AF point, total 19 cross AF points
5) Full HD video

If these are true, then we would have a speedy and accurately focusing Canon DSLR. Very tempting to upgrade to this new DSLR.

Neutral day rumour

Canon Rumours

Friday, August 28, 2009

Lego Coast Guard Kayak 5621

Picked this up some time ago because I thought the Coast Guard minifig looked pretty good. Comes with a kayak with oar and a buoy. I really like the Coast Guard helmet (looks like those lightweight bicycle helmets with holes in them) and the life vest. The oar is pretty thin at the flattened end and will bend easily. Very few parts but looks nice when completed.

Stubbly Coast Guard

The other side

The buoy

Keeping the kayak

Under the life vest, its a standard Coast Guard vest

Monday, August 24, 2009

Lego Mars Mission 5616-1: Mini Robot

This set belongs to the Mars Mission series and consists of one mini robot and an astronaut minifig. The astronaut has a gold visor on an ordinary helmet and carries a device that looks like a torchlight. He does have an interesting expression and the stubble seems to indicate that he has been on Mars for too long. A single oxygen tank is printed on the back.

The mini robot has an opening hatch to store the mars crystals and carries a pick-axe and what looks like some sort of ground detector for detecting crystals. It does look quite nice and would probably fit in a sidekick or mascot.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Lego Space Patrol 8399

The Lego Space Patrol set 8399 consist of a Space Patrol minifig and a robotic patrol dog. Although the "stick and green transparent warhead" is supposed to be a mini missle mounted on the dog, I found it to be rather clumsy and illogical and used it as a lighting instrument for the Space Patrol minifig. It costs only S$6.90 and builds up to a nice minifig and robot dog.