News Archive for 07/02/27

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New Sony Bluetooth head-end powers calls, music

02/27, 5:05pm

Sony Xplod BT2500

As one of its final announcements from its press day, Sony added a single Xplod head unit to its car stereos. The MEX-BT2500 makes Bluetooth a realistic option for most drivers, Sony claims. Combining a transmitter and noise-reducing microphone lets the CD player stand in as a hands-free calling hub for most Bluetooth cellphones. The head-end's wireless stereo support also works with more recent music phones (including much of Sony-Ericsson's Walkman line) and any other portable media player with Bluetooth inside. A front-mounted auxiliary input jack is present for plugging in iPods or other music devices without the wireless standard.

The BT2500 can drive as much as 52W of power across four channels and includes the by now de facto support for MP3 and WMA audio CDs. Sony's latest Xplod unit will be set for a March launch at a price of $180. A full image is ready after the break.

Sony touts portable photo printers

02/27, 4:30pm

Sony Photo Printers 2007

To support its new cameras, Sony on Tuesday also released two new PictureStation photo printers. Both the FP90 with a flip-up 3.6-inch LCD and the FP70 with a fixed 2.5-inch LCD are said to be light enough for real travel and incorporate their own handles for carrying on a vacation. Common to both is a superimpose mode for applying a custom message for a birthday. The printers can optionally auto-correct photos themselves and have a slew of filters for deliberately emphasizing lights, specific colors, or creating a canvas-effect texture.

The FP70 and larger-screened FP90 should be available in March for $150 and $200 respectively, and should work with any PictBridge-enabled USB camera as well as the Memory Stick cards found in Sony's own cameras. Photos follow after the jump.

Toshiba revamps P100 gaming notebooks for Vista

02/27, 3:40pm

Toshiba P100 for Vista

Toshiba this afternoon brought its holdout Satellite P100 series of gaming portables into 2007 with updates for Windows Vista. Every model in the updated line is preloaded with Vista Ultimate for full support of Media Center and key extras like DreamScene video backgrounds. A 512MB GeForce Go 7900 GTX graphics chip is also embedded for better 3D performance.

The reference model is the ST9752 with a 1.83GHz Core 2 Duo, 1GB of RAM, 120GB of hard disk space and a 1440x900 screen at $1,999. At the next level is the ST9762 ($2,499), which boosts CPU performance to 2GHz, upgrades storage to 160GB, and sharpens the display to 1680x1050. Finally, the pinnacle ST9772 at $2,899 keeps the enhancements of the ST9762 while doubling the RAM to 2GB. Toshiba is stocking the updated P100 today.

Olympus impresses with 37GB radio recorder

02/27, 3:10pm

Olympus Radio Server

Best known for its cameras, Olympus today unveiled the VJ-10 Radio Server. The compact device translates the design philosophy of PVRs to sound by storing audio on 37GB of free hard drive space, leaving room for up to 2500 hours of timeshifted FM radio. The storage is enough that up to 20 shows can be scheduled for recording in advance -- no matter how long they may be, Olympus says. A 3.9-inch LCD helps manage recordings on the unit itself, but a USB connection is available to transfer shows to a PC or to upload existing MP3 and WMA audio clips to the Radio Server.

The standard version is due on March 16th in Japan for $335. A special model, the VJ-10-JA, is following on April 1st preloaded with six months of NHK's English instruction radio shows for those eager to learn the Western language.

Sony tackles podcasting with new voice recorders

02/27, 2:35pm

Sony 2007 Voice Recorders

Sony bolstered its many releases today with new additions to its Digital Voice Recorder line. The SX57 (pictured) is designed for those who expect to capture voice at the same level as a good stereo recording, with a triple microphone array and a special STHQ (stereo high-quality) mode for musicians and other professionals. Its system is voice-triggered and is smart enough to stop recording during longer pauses to save space, Sony says. The SX57 ships in the Spring with 256MB of memory for $200 and will be followed by the SX57DR9, a $250 version with a cradle and Dragon NaturallySpeaking 9 for automatically transcribing interviews.

More after the break.

Samsung rolls out three high-contrast plasmas

02/27, 1:55pm

Samsung Early 2007 Plasmas

Samsung on Tuesday expanded its plasma TV line with three new systems beyond those announced at CES. The 63-inch 63P71FHD, 50-inch 50Q92HD, and 42-inch 42Q92HD are all drastically improved for viewing even in mid-day. The Korean firm boasts a 50 percent jump in contrast ratio to 15,000:1 for better image quality regardless of conditions; a Daylight Filter layer passively reduces glare, and an Ultra Daylight Mode actively adjusts the picture to look its best in daytime.

Though the 42-inch and 50-inch models reach only 720p, the 63-inch model is capable of a full 1080p resolution and is rare for sporting a Bluetooth adapter to connect to wireless headphones or compatible printers. Pricing and exact availability are unknown for the initial Korean launch, though these models are likely to appear in the US at a later point with minor changes.

New Sony Bluetooth stereos

02/27, 1:40pm

New Sony Bluetooth stereos

The flood is unstopped with the news of four new Bluetooth stereos by Sony. The first three are shelf systems, with the bare model being the CM-BX5BT. Aside from supporting any A2DP audio source, it also decodes MP3s natively, displaying the ID3 tags on its LCD. Wooden speaker cabinets produce 15W of sound. The CMT-HX7BT improves power to 50W, and is further equipped with a digital amplifier, as well as satellite radio support. The top-end CMT-DH7BT (pictured) swaps the CD player for a DVD player, which can be used for movie playback on a connected TV.

The ZS-BT1 is a portable stereo, and for that reason can be controlled remotely through Bluetooth using AVRCP, in addition to handling wireless audio signals. The system is otherwise fairly conventional, coming with a standard remote and a line-in jack for secondary sources. The BT1 should ship in August for $150; the CMT stereos will come in April at prices ranging from $150 to $300.

Case Logic bags and cases for electronics

02/27, 12:20pm

Case Logic bags and cases

Consumate with the 2007 Travel Goods Show, Case Logic has announced a variety of bags and cases that should be useful for gadget carriers. Perhaps most useful will be upcoming lines of messenger bags and backpacks, which will not only have padded laptop storage, but detachable cases for USB drives. The company has already launched dedicated hard drive cases in three different sizes. Finally, the company is working on cases specifically designed for GPS units, which will have extra space for cords and adapters. Dates are uncertain for the unreleased products, but the bags and backpacks are expected sometime in the spring.

Sony slims down rear-projection Bravias

02/27, 12:10pm

Rear-Project Bravias 2007

Another release by Sony today saw the company follow its direct-view LCD introductions with an update to its Bravia 3LCD rear-projection sets. All three are about 22-percent slimmer than earlier models, making them an easier fit in apartments and other tight home theaters. Each model brings support for the Bravia Internet Link for streaming media and Bravia Theater Sync for faster switching of HDMI sources, as well as the Cross Media Bar interface for managing the TV itself.

Click through for more details.

Sony intros seven home theater systems

02/27, 11:35am

Sony home theater systems

Sony has debuted seven home theater systems, foremost being the Bravia Theater line, the company's first systems to bear the branding of their television siblings -- the notion being that customers will buy the former to compliment the latter. There are three Bravia Theaters in the initial lineup: the DAV-HDX265, DAV-HDX267W, and the DAV-HDX500, each of which has a DVD changer with upscaling to 720p or 1080i. Another common feature is the Digital Media Port, which enables input from Bluetooth and WiFi sources as well as portable audio players. The 267W adds wireless rear speakers, while the 500 has both optical and coaxial inputs, and support for XM's Connect and Play technology. The speakers are floor-standing models that can be adjusted for height. The 265 ($300) and 500 ($500) will be ready in March; the 267W is coming in April for $300.

Cyber-shot W updated with 12-megapixel camera, more

02/27, 11:05am

Cyber-shot W Series 2007

Accompanying the release of the H- and T-series, Sony on Tuesday expanded its Cyber-shot line to include a trio of cameras in the W series. At the forefront is the W200 (pictured): the camera is the first compact point-and-shoot to claim a true 12.1 megapixels, delivering shots as large as 4000x3000. The 8.1-megapixel W90 and 7.2-megapixel W80 also stand as improvements over the earlier line, according to Sony.

More details and a gallery can be found after the break.

Sony intros cameras with HD output, more

02/27, 10:25am

Sony Cyber-shot Early 2007

Continuing a large string of announcements today, Sony updated its Cyber-shots with four new compact and semi-pro models. The 8-megapixel T-series is sharper than its predecessors and also more media-savvy, the company says: each can connect through a component cable directly or through a new Cyber-shot docking station to output their photos at HD resolution. A special printer is also available that can preview the photos on a TV while printing directly from the camera to make sure a given photo is worth a permanent copy.

More details, cameras, and a gallery follow after the jump.

Sony unleashes seven new Bravia LCDs

02/27, 9:20am

Bravia LCDs Early 2007

Sony this morning launched a major update to its Bravia line of TVs, targeting the mainstream end of its line. All seven new sets are the first to support the electronics maker's Internet Link adapter for streaming media directly to the set without a separate PC, and use the Cross Media Bar interface first seen in the PSP and PS3. Highlighting the launch are the two V3000-series 40- and 46-inch models (pictured): both not only feature a native 1080p resolution but also have a more vivid cold-cathode backlight and a 10-bit panel that produces subtler color gradients.

The two also mark the debut of Bravia Theater Sync, a feature that uses the HDMI link to quickly switch between sources through a single button on the TV remote. The V3000 line should be available this summer for a price to be announced later, while the Internet Link connector should arrive in July for $300. Click through for details of the S3000 and XBR4 sets.

Motorola keeps StarTAC alive in Korea with new model

02/27, 8:25am

Moto StarTAC III

Motorola today launched the StarTAC III for Korea, where the classic design has remained popular. A nod to both the 1996 flip-phone and the company's current design cues, the III preserves the short but wide stance of the original while modernizing the features. A larger, 2-inch 240x320 color screen makes the 2007 phone useful for Internet browsing as well as built-in GPS functions and eBooks. Also new is a three-color LED light on the outside that changes depending on the type of incoming call. MP3 playback is similarly new to the iconic brand.

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