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Trusted Recommends: Galaxy S23 and Xiaomi 13 Pro achieve high scores

Welcome to our latest bi-weekly instalment of Trusted Recommends where we showcase some of the very best products tested and reviewed by our expert team over the past two weeks.

The battle of 2023 flagship phones continues with the Vivo X90 Pro, Xiaomi 13 Pro and Samsung Galaxy S23, while Bose stands apart from the wireless earbud competition with its impressive QuietComfort Earbuds II

We’ve also seen comfy pillows from competitors such as Simba and Emma, high-end shavers from Braun and a pair of Tribit-branded kid-friendly headphones, so it’s safe to say that there’s something for everyone.

Without further adieu, here’s the latest collection of products that have scored four stars or above. 

Bose QuietComfort Earbuds II on top of case

Bose QuietComfort Earbuds II

Noise Cancellation is the name of the game with the Bose QuietComfort Earbuds II and it’s safe to say that there aren’t many competitors that can compete with what Bose has done here. Throw in improved battery life, better customisation and impressive bass and you’ve got some of the best wireless earbuds around.

Score: 5/5

Tribit TR-KH01 back

Tribit Starlet01 Kids

The Tribit Starlet01 Kids are a good choice if you’re on the market for a cute and comfy pair of headphones with volume limit controls that’ll protect the hearing of your kids. The catch? The kids can easily turn off the volume-limiting tech if they know how. 

Score: 4.5/5

HP Z40c G3 05

HP Z40c G3

If you spend any time doing complex work on your PC, you’ll know the value of a good monitor, and the curved HP Z40c G3 is a strong contender boasting a 4K resolution, built-in webcam and a huge widescreen aspect ratio.

Score: 4/5

Asus ROG Strix SCAR 16 laptop

Asus ROG Strix Scar 16 (2023)

The Asus ROG Strix Scar 16 is a gaming machine that doesn’t skimp with top-end performance, great specs and a stunning display that makes it one of the best gaming laptops you can buy in 2023.

Score: 5/5

Acer Chromebook Spin 514

The Acer Chromebook Spin 514 is a solid convertible Chromebook that looks great and offers decent performance and battery life for the price, though the port selection is a little stingy, and it’s not the most portable option around.

Score: 4/5

Asus ROG Zephyrus M16 (2023)

The Asus ROG Zephyrus M16 is an impressive gaming laptop with plenty of power thanks to Nvidia’s latest graphics core, and that’s with a lightweight, robust chassis. However, upcoming laptops will no doubt be faster, and there are several areas, including upgradability, where the M16 just doesn’t do enough compared to the competition. 

Score: 4/5

Roccat Kone Air

The mid-range gaming mouse market is a competitive one, but the Roccat Kone Air manages to stand out with a comfortable chassis ideal for larger hands, as well as decent sensitivity and fantastic battery life, though the lack of RGBs may put some off.

Score: 4.5/5

Bowers Wilkins 705 S3 main

Bowers and Wilkins 705 S3

The Bowers and Wilkins 705 S3 speakers deliver clean, expansive and detail-heavy sound with impeccable build quality, but they don’t perform quite as well at lower volume levels and the dedicated stands are very expensive. 

Score: 4.5/5

Proscenic T31 Digital Air Fryer Oven featured image

Proscenic T31 Digital Air Fryer Oven

The Proscenic T31 Digital Air Fryer is more of an additional oven than an air fryer, but it remains a handy option for quick midweek meals with the ability to roast, bake, air fry, dehydrate and roast, though it takes up much more space than most air fryers and tops out at just 205C. 

Score: 4/5

Simba Hybrid Firm Pillow hero

Simba Hybrid Firm Pillow

Comprised of three internal layers, the Simba Hybrid Firm Pillow is a firm but adjustable pillow with a touch of softness often not found in foam models, and it’s easy to look after too, but it doesn’t dissipate heat as fast as some competitors. 

Score: 4.5/5

Simba Hybrid Pillow hero

Simba Hybrid Pillow

The Simba Hybrid Pillow is the ideal option for those that love a feather pillow but prefer a synthetic option, sporting open-cell nanocubes for unparalleled softness and support, and you can take any out that you don’t want to adjust the pillow’s feel and height. It’s just a little bit on the expensive side at £108.

Score: 5/5

Emma Premium Microfibre Pillow hero

Emma Premium Microfibre Pillow

The Emma Premium Microfibre Pillow is a premium soft-feeling pillow that feels like a soft-down model, providing a modest level of support while retaining its comfortable nature. 

Score: 4/5

Braun Series 9 Pro featured image

Braun Series 9 Pro Electric Shaver

The Braun Series 9 Pro is one of the best electric shavers around with a premium design, comfortable shaving experience and exceptional results, ideal for anyone who wants a close shave without needing shaving foam. 

Score: 5/5

Remington F6 Style Series Aqua Foil Shaver F6000 featured image

Remington F6 Style Series Aqua Foil Shaver F6000

The Remington G6 Style Series Aqua Foil Shaver F6000 can’t quite compete with the big boys when it comes to a super-close shave, but at less than £50, it doesn’t really need to. That said, it is a solid mid-range shaver that offers decent performance in a handy, travel-friendly package. 

Score: 4/5

NextBase 622GW on counter

Nextbase 622GW

The flagship 622GW dash cam from Nextbase may be a little on the pricey side, but with 4K image quality, parking mode, rear camera support and a big screen, it provides pretty much everything you need –  aside from advanced driver aids, that is. 

Score: 4/5

Nextbase 322GW

While not quite as top-end as the 622GW, the Nextbase 322GW boasts features including GPS, SOS and a sensor-controlled parking mode. It caps out at a middling 1080p, but there’s little issue with its ability to capture detailed video in a range of driving conditions. 

Score: 5/5

Motorola Edge 30 Neo

The Motorola Edge 30 Neo is a relatively small-screen phone that doesn’t skimp with a snazzy design, a great screen and fast charging, however with poor low-light camera performance and a lack of processing power, it does come with its caveats. 

Score: 4/5

Motorola Edge 30

Motorola hasn’t exactly reinvented its mid-range smartphone with the Edge 30, but with an extremely lightweight body and an improved camera, it’s certainly more refined than before, and features like a 144Hz refresh rate help it stand out. The only real problem is its small battery.  

Score: 4/5

Motorola Edge 30 Ultra

The Motorola Edge 30 Ultra represents a strong return to the flagship market for Motorola, offering a stylish design with a great display, strong performance and one of the cleanest Android UIs around. The main 200MP camera isn’t quite up to the standards of the newer Galaxy S23 Ultra though. 

Score: 4.5/5

Samsung Galaxy S23

If you’re looking for a high-end smartphone that’s a little smaller than most modern flagships, the Galaxy S23 is the one to go for. Boasting a compact form factor, high-end display and internals and decent camera performance it’s a tempting option, but the slow charge speeds and the inability to drop down to 1Hz to save battery life may put some off. 

Score: 4.5/5

Vivo X90 Pro

The Vivo X90 Pro offers some of the best low-light camera performance around thanks to the 1-inch camera sensor, but it’s not simply a good camera phone with a top-end display, all-day battery life and fast charging, though the MediaTek 9200 and bland take on Android may leave some wanting more. 

Score: 4/5

Xiaomi 13 Pro handset

Xiaomi 13 Pro

The Xiaomi 13 Pro is a capable flagship that ticks many boxes with a top-end display, the latest Snapdragon chipset and a 1-inch camera sensor powering its main 50MP camera, though it’s not quite as performative in low-light as the Vivo X90 Pro, and Xiaomi’s MIUI 14 has odd layout choices that may irk long-time Android users. 

Score: 4.5/5

Both microphones on the Hollyland Lark C1 can use active noise cancellation

Hollyland Lark C1

Whether it’s for YouTube, TikTok or even a DIY podcast, the Hollyland Lark C1 makes it easy to capture clear audio from your smartphone without the need for annoying cables. It’s just a little on the expensive side for those just starting out. 

Score: 4/5

Sharp 65EQ3EA

Sharp’s latest big-screen 65EQ3EA QLED TV delivers enjoyable picture and sound and Android TV smarts at a surprisingly affordable price. It would be a solid all-rounder if it weren’t for its average gaming skills. 

Score: 4/5

Panasonic LUMIX S5II featured image

Panasonic Lumix S5II

The Panasonic Lumix S5II represents Panasonic’s most widely appealing full-frame camera to date, fixing many of the issues with the S5 while improving both performance and image quality. It’s still premium, but it’s just about in reach of young and aspiring content creators.

Score: 5/5

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