The Samsung HMX-E10 aside from its 270-degree rotating lens offers a 2.7"
230k-pixel touch-screen, relatively large for the camcorder size. The
LCD is spilt into an electronic live view and touch controls which
include record stop and play. The 1080p camcorder itself is however a
downgrade, from the U20's 3x optical zoom to 2x digital. It also
records to microSD and outputs via HDMI, unlike SD/SDHC and component
video output found on U20. The Flip-arm USB arm handles as usual the
battery charging and video sync. Interestingly, the U20 and E10 are set
at the same MSRP ($199) so you could say the trade-off is in the lens.
The beauty of the A-data Nobility N909 is that it can draw power from USB 2.0 while transferring at uber-fast
eSATA speed (90MB/s read, 50GB write). And this can be done without an
extra USB connection for power. The N909 is actually a
second-generation of its kind. Others have tried the hybrid design,
but their products suffered from usability issue since they have to
draw power from a USB auxiliary cable. The A-data traditionally doesn't
make pricing available so we have no way of knowing the the N909 falls
into the affordability category.
Rumor has it that AMD is in talks with NEC to license its proven USB 3.0 chipset in order to save R&D money into developing its own solution. NEC
seems like an ideal partner as the fab manufacturer has the capacity to
ramp up production as soon as orders are received. The talk comes at a
time when Intel at last released xHCI spec 1.0 which finalizes the
details of the register-level interface for host controller driver in
software. The move by AMD will undoubtedly drive the cost per unit even
lower to perhaps under $2, and will likely create an incentive for more
first-tier manufacturers to adopt SuperSpeed USB.
Vortez didn't find the effect that exhilarating. He notes the addition of
the low frequency transformation into vibration altered the somewhat
average sound of the headset. While the novelty of the sensation would
certainly distract from less than stellar sound, most serious gamers
will opt for the higher quality circumaural experience found with larger ear cups like the Logitech G35 or those focusing on surround audio like the Razer Megalodon.
Anyone who spends a significant amount of time gaming (enough to
desire rumble headphones) will know that headphones that press on the
ear can't be tolerated for long sessions. We'll hope Asus tries again
with this concept but with a larger version with some configurable
drivers and game support. The headset is available now in online stores
for roughly $80, but it seems version 2.0 might be worth the wait.
Check out the video demo after the jump.
The myriad of other features adorning the ST600 make the extra view-screen a
handy add-on, like the "fireworks mode" that we've seen on more than a
few cameras. The resolution has also been increased to 14.2 mega-pixels
and all the other key features are there that you'd expect from any
high-end subcompact. They also maintain the same gesture controlled
touchscreen interface for review and composing pictures. Gestures make
easy work of starting a slide-show of captured shots or playing back the
720p video. The ST600 should be available for $329 in September.
This particular green charger can be strapped to your shoe, or attached to a
knee pad, arm strap and helmet so you can technically have multiple
batteries recharging at the same time. The nPower with its stick form
factor probably works best if placed in a backpack or briefcase. For
hikers and bikers, the nPower is the better choice; on the other hand,
this concept charger with its interchangeable straps makes it ideal for
extreme sports (given the finished product has plenty of physical
protection for the unit).
The files are safeguarded by 128-bit AES software encryption. Unique to
the Lexar is the cross-platform compatibility. You will be able to
restore or back up files on either a PC or Mac. Lexar Echo SE however
won't break any speed record, with read speed topping at 28MB/s and read
at 10MB/s. At $499.99, the price point isn't very attractive at all.
For this kind of price, you could get a 256GB USB 3.0 SSD for $50 more.
Lumix LX5's brand new Venus Engine FHD CPU, according to Panasonic, improves
image processing from dynamic range to color saturation and chromatic
noise reduction. Another notable addition is the AVCHD Lite movie
recording at 720p. If you can afford the largest card available, you
can go for the highest bit-rate of 17Mbps (Other options include 13Mbps
and 9Mbps.) Panasonic guarantees no-hassle playback via SD on recently
announced VIERA HDTVs. The Lumix LX5 offers SDXC as well to offer
capacity up to 2TB; though, we don't have anything larger than 64GB as
of this writing. Expect the LX5 to hit retail anytime in August.
For those of you wondering, the Rock Speaker isn't Bluetooth. Instead,
they rely on in-house proprietary 2.4Ghz wireless technology to transmit
lossless audio up to 30m from any PC or Mac through a special USB
dongle. The 6.3kg speaker has two tweeters and outputs at 20W per
channel. The outdoor speaker set now appears on Amazon for pre-order at
$199.99. Though, to start streaming tunes to this "rock", you'll also
need Sound Blaster Wireless transmitter which goes for $99 MSRP.
Those who wish like to rip Blu-ray with MakeMKV might like to know the
Plextor PX-B120U reads BD media at 4x. Movie playback requires a
minimum of 2x (72Mbit/s), but faster is always better. Though, we
believe USB 2.0 can push read speed to 6x. (Buffalo has a USB 3.0 model
that reads three times faster for those don't mind tethered to a AC
outlet.) Being bus-powered also removes the hassle of carrying a bulky
AC adapter. Plextor also throws in a copy of Cyberlink which now gains
upscaling as well as 3D playback. Last but not least is the USB 2.0
Blu-ray drive ability to dock with Plextor's upcoming PlexMedia to double as a BD player for the living room's HDTV.
The Echo smarten improves on the previous generation with a sleeker profile
and a rubberized grip so it won't roll around. Other notable additions
include a micro-USB for sync'ing and recharging without a cradle; and a
standard 3.5mm audio jack (the Pulse has a 2.5mm). The Echo now has a
8GB version ($199.95) with enough room for 800 hours of audio recording.
The 4GB goes for $169.95. LiveScribe has opened its own apps store in
late 2009, reselling a number of programs ranging from Spanish-English
dictionary to games that can be downloaded to the smartpens.
Renesas' just announced µPD720200A offers 85% less power consumption compared to the industry's first USB 3.0 host controller. The chip, rated at 50mW standby mode, is
pin-compatible with its power-hungry sibling, making it possible for
existing partners to upgrade to the latest model. However, the only
major notebook / netbook maker backing USB 3.0
is Asus whose subsidiary ASMedia is supplying the parent company all
the USB 3.0 chips it needs. Renesas may have to go after HP, Dell,
Lenovo and others which are likely shipping new portables with the 5Gbps
interface for back-to-school season.
Tilting the mouse is how you get it to scroll, no clumsy scroll wheels. The
SwiftPoint is actually small enough to remain in your hand while you are
typing. If you are late comer to the laptop sensation, this might help
ease you past the troubles learning to use a multi/touchpad. Those not
living under a rock will enjoy having the RSI reducing alternative to
vary your input motions a bit. We're looking forward to comparing them
to the amazing Anywhere MX
mouse from Logitech. If it comes close to what it promises, it will be
well worth the $70 price tag. Video demo after the jump.
The silicon portion of the indestructible drive comes in capacities from
8GB to 64GB. The purported read/write speeds are the very top of the
USB 2.0 food chain on par with the Voyager GTR. To get any faster you'll need to switch up to USB 3.0 and the likes
of Super Talent. Only thing to remember is exactly how much of a pain
it will be to screw/unscrew the drive into the protective shell. The
8GB model will retail for only $50 which is pretty hot for the speed
advertised even more so for the included LaCie flair. The units should arrive in August at their online store. Video demo of the drive's durability after the jump.
First off, it is a platform to slightly angle your PC and make it more
comfortable to view. Not a big deal for laptop devices but tablet
devices without integral kickstands are always awkward when they are out
of hand. The Macally TuneFan also keeps your device cool for extended
use with a large cooling fan. The 2.1 sound system in such a small
package is a true gem. Many USB speaker
systems are very odd shapes and can be troublesome to pack or pose.
The USB sound system also has a line-in jack for use with MP3 players or
your iPhone while being powered by USB. The TuneFan has individual
power switches to control power independently for both fan and audio, a
nice touch that seems unique to this product. At $99, the Macally
TuneFan is on the pricey side for this niche, but it does give you your
money's worth from our vantage.
One thing to note, in the past few years, Apple has increased the power output to its USB ports. Most notably to iPad owners who cannot charge their iPads from anything except an AC outlet or a
new Apple laptop/desktop. We'd be willing to guess that new Macs would
charge faster than the old ones. Hopefully someone takes on the
challenge and tests that theory.
The UVmini comes in 2 models to help every degree of germ-a-phobe combat
their psychosomatic illnesses. The 302 model is powered solely by USB
while the 502 models have an internal lithium battery that will manage
up to 10 UV disinfecting
cycles between USB charges. While not as convenient, the USB only
model is touted upon for keeping steady levels of power so that efficacy
isn't adversely affected by the drop off of charge as a battery is
depleted. Either model should do a great job, while connected to a
standard mini-USB phone charger. Those traveling abroad in countries
without resistances to local flora in the water might do well to pack
one of these to keep those very well known side effects from ruining
your vacations. We don't have any price information as of yet but they
should start hitting Pan-Asian vendors shortly. The rest of the world
will have to wait a bit longer.
We currently pair our TC1100 and Everun (on an after market kickstand) with an MS Arc keyboard and that could definitely be improved upon. The Necky fits laptops
from 10-14inches and has an adjustable viewing angle. This should
require no drivers and will work on but PC's and Apple computers. If
they built one with a Bluetooth keyboard this might make a really comfy
iPad accessory. Apple really should have stuck a USB port on the iPad
instead, or some port, any port, SRSLY. Rants notwithstanding, there's
definitely a road warrior or two that could get some real use out of one
of these. The price and release date aren't clear yet so check their
site if your favorite phantom tablet ever emerges from the vapor.
The software looks to be very easy to configure and will check email on
dozens of the most popular web and server mail systems. You can assign
different colors to each mail box so you know exactly which accounts
have something new for you. Even FaceBook and other social networking
messaging systems are support. God forbid you stopping checking FB for
30 seconds. This would be great for kids and grandparents that aren't
already net-addicted. Pick it up now at Brando's online shop for $18.
Another hidden talent of the Cyber-shot WX5 and TX9 includes the ability to
capture an image with a blurred background. This traditionally requires
some manual adjustment in aperture settings, but these Cyber-shots
automate the process. Also related to 3D is Sweep Multi Angle which
lets you take 3D images of the same object in 15fps at different angles.
This presumably allows you to rotate the image in 360 degrees on a
dedicated 3D viewer. The two cameras share the ability to record 1080i
AVCHD video at 17Mbps. The slimmer TX9 with 2.8" touchscreen will go to
retail for around $400 while the WX5 with a larger 3.5" touchscreen is
$100 less expensive.
Power is controlled not only with a timer similar to the CheckTap, but can also fire on an event. You can set a printer to only be
powered on whenever an item is printed, or maybe just when Word is
running so you don't have to wait for it to warm up. Default states can
also be managed to have devices power up or down along with your
computer. On top of that you can define hot keys that control the
devices as well for rapid access without having to crawl behind your
machine. The truly hardcore can control the device with an API that's
available to control the power outlets from home grown software. Price
isn't available now but with any luck we'll be able to pick up the 30
of these that we can think of uses for right now with a bulk discount.
The LifeStudio drives come in either desktop or mobile variants with a docking station. The Plus models come with a detachable flash drive that attached to the drive or docking station. On its own it functions
as a regular flash drive for mobile data. Reattach the drive and the
LifeStudio automatically backs up all the data on it. The drives range
from 320 GB to 2 TB in capacity. The hefty 2TB USB drive is already
retailing for only $185; the Plus and the Mobile versions shouldn't push
those prices much once they are released which should be in the coming
Isadore the dragon returns in a new hue along with a cast of 4 others. They
are available in capacities up to 16GB for $80. Lower capacity drives
cost less, which may be important if you just have to have more than
one. Their press release mentions other surprises and we're hoping that
they have some Star Wars related news to add to this as well.
To further prove the existence of the product, the "the icon" has been
entitled by the Taiwan Good Design and also certified by Apple as an
"Works with iPhone" accessory. In terms of battery performance, "the
icon" provides an additional 3 hours of talk time; 5.5 hours of WiFi web
surfing; and 18 hours of MP3 playback. The 1000mAh Li-ion polymer
battery pack is rechargeable via a USB port. While it doesn't have any
buttons, the product itself is in fact a battery indicator. Among the iPhone chargers we've tested, this one is definitely uber-cool.
The enclosure can reportedly support up to 750GB 9.5mm 2.5". If you are
going to plug this into a USB 3.0 port, the Icy Dock will likely not
require auxiliary power whose source relies on a DC-to-USB A cable. For
backward compatibility with USB 2.0, the Icy Dock can make use of the
said cable to draw additional power from another port. For $40, this is
truly a bargain considering you also get a leather pouch, 3 years of
warranty and that brand name USB 3.0 products still carries premium pricing.
Other more obvious devious that better illustrate the potential of mal-hardware are annoy-a-tron USB devices available to miscreants with a credit card. These devices
report that they are a keyboard and send random keystrokes to the
computer to annoy and enrage. They can take days to be discovered, due
to nothing actually being wrong except that a device that looks like a flash drive
acting like a keyboard. Just make sure that you are paying as much
attention to what's coming in the front door as well as what's coming in
over the wire.
There are quite a few other integrated solutions yet they are controllers
targeted exclusively at direct attached storage (DAS) market. Now those
controllers are now strengthened with USB Attached SCSI (UAS) to boost
speed by as much as 35%. This is something flash drives, RAID-0 drives and SSDs can take advantage of. Texas Instrument is also readying a number of USB 3.0 solutions
including two x1 PCI Express xHCI controllers; 4-port USB 3.0 hub chip;
and SuperSpeed USB to SATA 3.0 bridge. They will likely hit market in
the next few months.
The trio of wired headsets: the H360, H530 and H555 are the newest in three of Logitech's most popular lines which will supplement ClearChat-series. Perfect for business or games, they feature a slender frame and medium
sized ear cups for good sound isolation. All three sport an adjustable
microphone that can be rotated completely out of the way when not
needed. They are available for order now from Logitech's online store
now. Prices range from $54 to $89 depending on which style appeals to
Century picks a LCD with true 16:9 aspect ratio, and for the purpose of the
product, it's is pretty unique. We believe however a vertically-oriented
(6:19 aspect ratio) design is a better fit for document monitors.
Better yet, throw in auto rotation feature to make it even more
versatile. The Century LCD-10000U
- like all its siblings - is USB 2.0 powered given you have another
port to spare for auxiliary power. Brightness is modest, rated at
230cm/m2. If you are prepared to drop $250 USD, this imported USB
monitor should arrive in mid-July.
USB 3.0 provides enough power to for some smaller eSATA devices but the larger
devices are the ones that are really exciting. We celebrate the release
of new SuperSpeed devices here almost one at a time but this gives us
dozens of new options all at once. All manner of RAID and storage
devices built with eSATA connections can now be run without the painful
management of eSATA cards and clumsy cables. The adapter is slightly
ungainly bulging where the eSATA cable would be connected limiting
access for other USB devices. Get yours now at their online store of course for only $34.
The best thing is that this little guy is your inside man. The USB Chatman
will alert you by loudly exclaiming whenever your little ones start
discussing or hearing stuff that ought not to. If you're a responsible
parent, you'll have stayed within earshot to hear his tinny warning.
The configuration screen lets you identify any personal hot-buttons you
want to censor. This might sound overbearing but remember, paying too
much attention to your child beats paying too little attention. The best
thing about this little dancing teddy bear is the price. The USB
Chatman can come home and entertain for you for only $60 online.
Deus ex Machina aside, the price isn't actually the biggest barrier to
getting one of these to your home. Each of the previous models, if they
actually made it from concept to catalog, were made in extremely small
runs. The Optimus Maximus keyboard is actually still available for
those in need only slightly more expensive than a complete gaming
computer, 3 laptops, 8 netbooks, half a used car or 40 MS Arc keyboards.
Get in line for this sub-K keyboard but don't hold your breath, it's
already a year in the making and Art is only batting .250 on actually
delivering Optimus Vaporous for actual purchase.