[NEW STUFF] I have relyed on Windows Live Writer for a good part of the last 7 years. It was probably one of the most popular blog client around especially for people on Yet despite the popularity, its creator, Microsoft didn't bother to take it further in its product cycle. Instead, earlier this month Windows Live Writer went open-sourced.

 It didn't just happened, apparently, when Microsoft stops developing Live Writer in 2012, there is a group of vonlunteers from the public wrote to Microsoft to ask for Live Writer to be open-sourced. Thank God for them. I have tried several blogging client over the years such as Blogger's web-based, Marsedit and Desk but I still like Windows Live Writer for its full WYGIWYG (what you see is what you get) usage, lightweight and responsiveness.

However I ran into a authentication problem on Windows Live Writer this month. This is because Google upgraded its authentication system to a new one called "OAuth 2.0". And Windows Live Writer as Microsoft put it, will not be upgraded as it is Google's problem. Thereafter, it was reported that if switching on the "Allows Less Secured Apps" option will allow Windows Live Writer to continue to work with Blogger. It didn't work for me though.

Open Live Writer did. To be exact, the original v0.5 version didn't work, one of the nightly version did. I was able to login and start blogging again! Official Website -

[HANDS-ON] I lay my hands on the Astell & Kern (A&K) Junior at the recently concluded International Sound and Sight Exhibition 2015. I am hardly an audiophile but exhibitions like ISS broadens my horizon so much more. I come across so many devices that takes music to the next level with amazing soundstage, clarity and crisp. More often than not, the industrial design are quite on another level as well.

Astell & Kern Junior  is one such candidate.

There is no doubt about the brightest spot on the junior. I could not think of another gadget out there which has a nearly a complete sentence engrave on it. Its loud and unconventional. No one could miss it. Possibly reflecting on a social trend among the juniors shouting for attention. The boxy shape then adds a cool factor to it and topping up it are the premium sliver finish. Everything is so perfect and clean except for the screen which could do with more pixels in it. It’s decent, but for such a premium device it could do with more.

A&K Junior as its name implies, is the entry-level device in the A&K line-up. In the sound department, it is really not as “Junior” as it is. I didn’t get to try with my own tracks but the several tracks that I played, they are just as impressive as any portable device I have tried. Audiophile grade devices require some good listening hours and comparison of various file types to make a good judgment.

So here a professional review for your reading pleasure -

All it is left to say is it’s price tag, a relatively affordable S$699. Expensive? It’s all relative, Astell & Kern 380 is on sale for S$4,999.

DAC: WM8740 (single)
Storage: 64GB internal + up to 64GB expandable memory (micro SD)
Supported formats: WAV, FLAC, WMA, MP3, OGG, APE(Normal, High, Fast), AAC, ALAC, AIFF, DFF, DSF
FLAC, WAV, ALAC, AIFF : 8kHz ~ 192kHz (8/16/24bits per Sample)
/ DSD : DSD64 (1bit 2.8MHz), Stereo (DSD to PCM)
Decoding: 24/192kHz
Bluetooth: V4,0
Weight: 93g
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