HIH Studios

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Portable powersourge

This PowerSource Mobile 100 from Xantrex weighs about as much as a mobile laptop battery, works with “multiple electronic products at different voltage and power levels”, and costs $129.99. Why would you use this thing? Because when plugged in the AC outlet on this portable charger, laptops get 2 hours more power, Sony PSPs get 12 hours more power, and iPod Nanos get 72 hours more.

Product's page.

3G Cell phone by Samsung

You don't need to look big and flashy to get people's attention these days. Instead, it seems the public prefers the understated elegance of fingerprint-attracting glossy white. Samsung has taken the popular iPod-look and adapted it to their latest music phone: the Z610. Rocking a smooth white exterior, chrome accents, and prominent music controls, the Z610 looks pretty darn sweet.

We're not sure how much memory is on board, but if you really want to make use of the integrated MP3/WMA/AAC media player, you'd probably want to stuff a gig (or more) into the microSD expansion slot. The 2.0 megapixel camera features notably on the back of the phone, with a VGA unit on the front for video telephony: yup, this is a 3G handset. If you're wondering where you'd dial your digits, fret not, because this is a slider phone. (C'mon, it's Samsung. Would you really expect anything different?)

No one knows what the price of it will be or which cell phone provider will carie it because it just recieved it's FCC approval

Home theater gone portable

We’ve already seen a few additions of the Intel Core 2 Duo Merom to Dell's XPS line of laptop. We’ve also gotten a benchmark of the Merom performance (powerd by "crunchgear.com")that shows how much better it is over previous chips. Today we see the release of the Qosimo G35-AV660 by Toshibo.

The G35-AV660 features a 2Ghz processor with 4MB cache. It has two 120GB SATA drives that run at 5400rpm–I would personally like to see them run at 7200rpm–and 2048MB DDR2 memory.

Toshiba has poised this to be a multimedia system and has included a built in TV tuner so that it can watch live TV and function as a DVR. It also has an HDMI port and supports 1080i. Another feature sure to get multimedia enthusiasts, is the included HD DVD drive. It is available now from ToshibaDirect for a less than affordable $3499.

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Marantz SA-7S1

Marantz, makers of many things expensive, has announced the SA-7S1, a super Super Audio CD player. The player's main claim to fame is the built-in anti-vibration electronics technology to provide shake free playback of your SACDs and CDs. This is a totally useful feature, because I’m sure you’re all well aware how much CD players vibrate. It will be available in Japan this October. The price tag is set at $6200 because, as you can see, it’s made of solid gold–alright really it’s just colored gold, but for that price, it should be made of gold. However it doesn't support MP3.

Plextor PX-608CU (world's smallest burner)

Plextor this week launched the world's smallest CD-DVD writer, a slimline external unit aimed at notebook users. Weighing in at just 250g, the drive is a mere 1.6cm, 2/3-inch thick.
The PX-608CU supports all DVD recordable and rewriteable formats, including dual-layer media. Speeds range from 4x to 8x. The drive will also burn CD-R/RW discs at 24x. There's 2MB of buffer memory on board.
PX-608CU supports dual-layer DVD burning at up to 4x, single-layer DVD burning at up to 8x, and CD-R/RW burning at 24x speed. The function that prospective light traveling, laptop-toting buyers will be most happy about is the USB 2.0-bus powered capabilities of the drive, which will save you from carrying around a bulky AC adapter. Apparently the drive will only consume 4.8 Watts of power when burning a DVD at 8x, which shouldn't put too much of a strain on your battery. No word on pricing yet, although we will say that the "world's smallest" tag generally doesn't come with a pricetag to match.

Disk drive capacity

Drive Type Storage Capacity
Floppy 1.4MB
Zip 100MB, 250MB, and 750MB
CD Up to 720MB
Flash memory Up to 8GB
DVD Up to 8GB (16GB on two sides of the disk)
Hard drive Up to 1,000GB (1TB - and higher)

Megabyte (MB) is 1 million bytes and a gigabyte (GB) is 1 billion bytes (or 1,000MB), terabyte (TB), or 1,000GB drive.

Few RAMs or One RAM

Is it better to get two 512MB sticks or one 1GB stick in order to get one gig? Also, is it better to choose a higher frequency when the PC requires, for example, 533MHz PC4200 DDR2 SDRAM?

It's true: Two smaller RAM sticks will perform better than one larger stick. Because the PC can access both sticks in parallel, so your computer can (theoretically) have access to twice the RAMage as it could if you had only the single RAM stick.

Vendors like to use every possible RAM slot in order to take advantage of this effect. It wasn't uncommon to see a server with eight RAM sockets, each featuring a 128MB RAM chip, for a total of 1GB of RAM.

Realistically, if you aren't running a web server off your computer or dealing with some application where every ounce of computing power counts, you aren't going to notice much of a difference with, say, a 2x512MB vs. 1x1GB RAM configuration. However single 1GB stick is about 10 to 15 percent cheaper than two 512MB sticks.


I'd always wondered about what is the difference between DVD-R ("DVD minus R") and DVD+R ("DVD plus R") discs. Virtually every DVD burner supports both formats (including DVD-RW and DVD+RW), and the capacities of the discs are the same. Both exist in double-layer ("DL") versions, as well.

But the fella over at this blog uncovered a rather heinous difference: DVD-R discs include a small, pre-recorded ring used for data encryption. No, not in a good way: These discs take longer to copy and, in some cases, can't be copied at all due to the pre-recorded crypto ring, which can't be overwritten. (The upshot is that this can prevent "disc-at-once" copying, or a complete bit-for-bit copy, because a portion of the disc is un-writeable.)

This is complicated stuff (if you don't believe me, try decoding the graphics at the bottom of this page), and I'd wager it's that confusion that companies and groups like the DVD Forum are relying on. You'll buy DVD-R because it has an official DVD logo on it (pictured).

In the absence of any compelling reason not to use DVD+R discs instead of DVD-R discs, this writer advises you to go with the former. But then again, maybe this issue is getting blown out of proportion.

Companies gone green and bad

Green Peace has announced the results of its first global exam on green electronics and the report card is somewhat surprising. As you can see above, companies like Nokia and Dell are getting closer to the green zone, while others like Apple, Motorola and Lenovo are ranked way into the red.

The initiative was developed in order to help reduce the use of toxic chemicals and electronic wastes (e-wastes) used in electronics. Due to a high consistency of these toxic e-wastes, many retired electronics are wholly unrecyclable. As a result, once contaminated devices are discarded, they are tossed into ever expanding toxic e-wastes dumps. If the initiative is successful, it will greatly increase the recyclability of electronics worldwide and therefore reduce the quantity of toxic e-wastes.

Your guide to green electronics

How the companies line up

MyFabrik - The Maxtor virtual drive

MyFabrik, loosely related to Maxtor, is a new online data storing, sharing, organizing application that lets you manage files with a web browser. You can upload and download pictures, music, videos and documents privately or publicly, depending on what permissions you set. The 2.0 version of the web-app comes from tagging, sharing with others, and the ability to quickly post the files you choose onto eBay or MySpace.

It’s aiming to be a one-stop shop for media sharing, attacking .Mac and a number of other players with 2GB accounts for $30 a year and seamless interaction with Maxtor’s Fusion line of hard drives.

You can check MyFabrik on MyFabrik.com