News Archive for 06/08/23

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New Panasonic D-snap player and D-dock Stereo

08/23, 5:00pm

New D-Snap and D-dock

Including a card slot for extra storage on a digital audio player is increasingly common. What isn't common is relying solely on that slot without sacrificing features. Panasonic's D-snap players have largely taken this unusual route. Today, the company took the added step of releasing both two new players and two interesting new stereo units that complement them. The SV-SD800N and 400V both share a wafer-thin, narrow design reminiscent of the iPod nano but use SD cards alone for storage (a 128MB card is included). Much like the Sony A1200, the new D-snaps have a stealth OLED screen that merges with a mirror-finish shell. The new players are also notable for including a pair of noise-cancelling earbuds, a rare feature for any manufacturer. Click through for news and a photo of the equally surprising D-dock stereo.

iPod nano, "iPhone" to leap ahead in flash memory?

08/23, 4:10pm

iPod nano Leap Ahead

A conspicious absence of an iPod nano capacity update almost a year after its initial launch has cast doubt on the company's ability to maintain interest in its music players, especially after competitor SanDisk recently revealed that it would have the first 8GB flash player and price it competitively at $249. Such concerns might well be unfounded, reports commentator Sean Alexander. He observes that Apple has previously entered into a large agreement with Intel and Micron that helped form IM Flash Technologies, a company that has already managed to test flash memory on a 50nm process - a process ten times smaller than the 500nm technology available today. Limited production is set to begin late this year, says Alexander, which would make it feasible for Apple to release an updated iPod nano or the rumored Apple phone with tremendous capacity increases - to as much as 16-32GB of onboard flash. Such capacities may need to wait until early next year but would effectively dwarf SanDisk or other flash player manufacturers' latest models.

TiVo Series 3 news: HDMI and external SATA

08/23, 3:05pm

TiVo Series 3 News

The Series 2 PVR has been TiVo's sole unit for years. Though it gained a second tuner and increased storage, the current recorder has suffered as its most avid users began adopting HDTVs and watching HD programming that the Series 2 simply could not support. TiVo has already made it known that its upcoming Series 3 would support HD signals and CableCARD adapters. Photos released today show that the Series 3 is more than a simple update to the existing model, says HDBeat. Beta-testers of the new model report that it contains two CableCARD tuners for recording two HD streams at once and an HDMI connector to display recorded shows at full quality. Most intriguing is the external SATA connector: TiVo subscribers will be able to add their own external hard drives if the built-in storage runs low. This is an important consideration given the large size of HD video relative to standard programming. See a photo of the back (including explanations of the various ports) after the jump.

PSP to get GPS receiver

08/23, 2:55pm

PSP to get GPS receiver

As reported by Gamer Scan, Sony announced today at the Leipzig Games Convention that the PSP will receive a GPS attachment in the near future. Though the company said little about availability, games in the Metal Gear and Hot Shots Golf series are confirmed as using the GPS features in an unspecified way. There are also more conventional programs coming, including general navigation tools and a planetarium offering from Sega. More information should be available at the Tokyo Game Show in late September.

Asus MyPal A639: hybrid GPS and PDA

08/23, 2:35pm

Asys MyPal A639

GPS is becoming an increasing fixture in cars and some smartphones; PDAs have generally had to go without built-in functions in favor of external adapters. In the Asus MyPal line, GPS is a built-in feature for some models. The latest addition is the A639; while it shares the 802.11b/g and Bluetooth 2.0 wireless of earlier models, it expands the storage appreciably with 1GB of flash memory and an SD card slot for more. Asus' PDA runs Windows Mobile 5 and has Microsoft-friendly software such as mobile versions of Outlook and Word. There is no confirmed availability or price.

Sonic Impact Video 55 traveling iPod theater

08/23, 12:50pm

Sonic Impact Video 55

The iPod may be adequate as a video viewer during a bus or subway commute, but as a viewer for the home or in the car its small size may not be enough. Placing that iPod into a Sonic Impact Video 55 cradle turns an iPod with video into an all-in-one media player. Using a Dock Connector attachment mounted in the base of the unit, the Video 55 outputs video to a 7-inch LCD and stereo speakers. The system can be closed with the iPod inside to double as a sturdy carrying case when not in use. It can play up to 3 hours of video using its own lithium-ion battery and will also plug into a 12-volt car accessory socket or a home wall outlet. Sonic Impact's cradle is expected to ship in September for $299.

Bose Companion 5: 2.1 surround sound for computers

08/23, 12:20pm

Bose Companion 5 Speakers

Surround sound is a frequently touted feature for computer speakers. Nevertheless, the likelihood of its use in most regular computer setups is slim: there is rarely any room for the rear satellites in a home office or college dorm, which turns most surround systems into overpowered two-channel speakers. Bose is offering a solution in the form of its new Companion 5 speakers. In combination with a processor that automatically converts multi-channel audio, two uniquely-shaped satellites bounce the audio in multiple directions to create a convincing surround sound effect. A subwoofer provides low-end bass response. The Companion 5 connects through USB, works with both Macs and Windows PCs, and ships September 7th for $399.

Olympus announces nine new cameras

08/23, 11:30am

Olympus 9 New Cameras

In advance of the Photokina expo taking place September 25th, Olympus has announced a full nine camera models across three different lineups. The new FE line is Olympus' entry-level camera, which shares a common platform of a 6 megapixel sensor, a 2.5-inch LCD, and a simplified one-button/one-function interface; the FE-200 adds 5X optical zoom. More advanced is the Stylus series (known as [mju:] in Europe) that emphasizes a compact shape and weatherproofing. All five new Stylus models feature a 3-inch LCD and Bright Capture technology, which allows for high ISO settings not normally found in point-and-shoot cameras. Of particular note are the Stylus 725 SW, which is waterproof to 5m and can survive a 1.5m drop, as well as the Stylus 1000, which holds a 10 megapixel sensor and can use Bright Capture to achieve an unheard-of ISO 6400 by lowering the effective image quality to 3 megapixels. Lastly, the SP-510 UltraZoom is a semi-professional camera with a 7 megapixel sensor, 10X optical zoom, and up to ISO 4000 using Bright Capture. Most of these new models are shipping in September, with select models shipping in October. Photos of key cameras in the lineup are after the jump.

Griffin FireWave surround sound for Mac now shipping

08/23, 10:50am

Griffin FireWave Shipping

While Windows listeners have had surround sound decoding in sound cards for some time, such hardware is rare for Mac users. This situation changes now that the long-awaited FireWave decoder has begun shipping, Griffin Technology announced today. Announced in 2005, the FireWave can natively process Dolby Digital or Pro Logic II signals from supporting programs in OS X, such as DVD Player or games that support the OpenAL sound format (including Unreal Tournament 2004 and World of Warcraft). Other audio that requires four to six separate channels can be routed as well. The device connects through a 6-pin FireWire cable (with a pass-through port for other FireWire devices) and does not require any power of its own, though speakers require their own power supply. FireWave ships for $100 and requires MacOS X Panther or later.

Nokia E62 details

08/23, 10:20am

Nokia E62 Details

The design of the Motorola Q set a precedent for smartphone design which has quickly become the target for multiple manufacturers. Perhaps its greatest challenger will be Nokia's upcoming E62, new details of which were made available today through PC Magazine. Unlike other such phones, the E62 will run a version of the Symbian OS instead of Windows Mobile 5. It will also have a large 2.8-inch screen, Bluetooth, and 90MB of internal memory with a microSD slot for more. The release timeframe and price have not yet been finalized.

ATI launches Radeon X1950, X1650, X1300 XT graphics

08/23, 9:55am

ATI New X1K Graphics

Though early details about the new cards had already appeared in advance, ATI today formally announced its upgraded line of Radeon X1000-series graphics cards. For performance users, the X1950 XTX and CrossFire cards (pictured) both improve on the earlier design with a higher 650MHz core speed and 1GHz GDDR4 memory (2GHz effective) and will retail for $449. The CrossFire version includes a connector to join it with a second card for a dramatic improvement in performance. Occupying the mid- and low-range are the X1650 Pro and X1300 XT, which claim the performance of the X1600 XT and Pro but with lower price points of $99 and $89 respectively. All three models feature quieter cooling technology, HDCP support for copy-protected Blu-Ray and HD DVD movies, and are expected to ship on September 14th.

Microsoft announces Habu, revives Explorer 3

08/23, 9:15am

Microsoft Gaming Mice

The Leipzig Gaming Convention saw a Microsoft press conference in which the company announced two new high-precision mice aimed at the the gaming market. The Habu (pictured, right) is a collaboration between Microsoft and the gaming-focused company Razer on a customizeable design. Users can adjust the sensitivity of the laser tracking between 400 and 2000 DPI, alter the side panels to fit different hand sizes, or store up to five input profiles through onboard memory. All seven buttons are programmable as well. Shipping in October, the Habu should retail for $70 when it arrives in North American stores. Read about the reintroduction of the Intellimouse Explorer 3 after the jump.

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