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Showing Off your Digital Masterpieces

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Category: Hardware Published on Friday, 29 July 2011

Two Photo Frames from Ceiva and GiiNii 

How do you display your vast collection of digital photos?

On your computer?

On your phone?

On a tablet device, such as an iPad?

Or, have you climbed aboard the digital photo frame bandwagon?

I've been playing with two digital photo frames that take advantage of new and old (maybe ancient) technologies. In fact, even the most technologically advanced of these frames dates back to late 2009. But that's beside the point.

The CeivaPro80 ($147.99) from photo frame pioneer Ceiva Logic Inc. and the GiiNii 8" Digital Picture Frame ($79.99) from GiiNii International Corp. both have the capability to display, crisp, clear photos, but it's how they do it that makes the difference.

The Pro80 is the most technologically advanced of the pair, featuring the ability to "send" photos to the frame using a computer and Wi-Fi or Ethernet connection or a smartphone. In fact, you can invite friends and relatives to send pictures to the frame via the Internet or send pictures to their frames (if they have them).

The only drawback is that you have to subscribe to Ceiva's PicturePlan photo delivery service. The service is free for the first year, but will cost you $99.95 for one year or $249.95 for three years.

Fortunately, this isn't the only way you can access photos. The frame comes with a memory card reader that can handle everything from SD cards to memory sticks (some with an adapter). But, from some reason, the folks at Ceiva neglected to add a second USB port to accommodate USB drives (the one on the unit is being used by the frame's Wi-Fi receiver).

The high resolution display is crisp and clear, although its 640x480 resolution is a bit less than the competition.

Photos are delivered to the frame over night or you can choose to have them delivered immediately using the menu settings on the frame.

Other features include:

  • The ability to send up to 60 new photos to the frame every day.
  • Interchangeable black and wood-finish templates.
  • An on-screen menu that gives you easy access to rotation of the photos, display modes, deletion of photos, slideshow transitions and loads of other features.
  • An eight-inch high resolution LCD screen.
  • A PicturePlan lifetime warranty.
  • Six-button front navigation lets you browse through photos, access settings, etc.
  • Unlimited photo storage, including the ability to access the latest news, sports, weather, etc.

Although the GiiNii frame doesn't have the network capability of the Ceiva, it does feature a few things its competitor doesn't have.

The frame features a 600x800 pixel display and can handle USB storage devices in addition to memory cards. It can also display videos from any USB-equipped camcorder and play MP3 music files.

On the negative side, the frame is a bit slow in handling the various types of photo compression and the quality of the display deteriorates if you use the frame's internal storage. This can easily be overcome by only displaying photos from memory cards or USB devices.

Other features include:

  • 128 MB of internal memory.
  • A 6-in-1 memory card reader
  • A remote control that can handle all of the functions of the frame and accesses its settings.
  • The frame auto-rotates photos.
  • 12 photos of U.S. national parks are preloaded.
  • It has a 90-day warranty.

Check out the companies' websites at www.ceiva.com and www.giinii.com for more information.

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