LAS VEGAS--A lot of the gaming news we anticipated last month came to fruition at this year's CES in Las Vegas. While we didn't get a definitive release date for Project Natal, Microsoft did announce the motion sensing technology would be available this holiday season. How much it will cost is still a mystery and there was no sign of Natal at Microsoft's CES booth.
LAS VEGAS--While it was great to get some solid hands-on time playing PS3 in 3D, Microsoft debuted something for the Xbox 360 that we'll actually be able to play in late March; not to mention it's much more practical, too.
Xbox Live Game Room essentially allows you to create your own arcade, offering titles from many classic developers such as Atari, Intellivison, and Konami. When the service goes live in late March, 30 titles will be immediately available, with five to seven new games being released each week.
There's no dashboard update required for Game Room; you'… Read more
Though the conference opens for the public today, this is our second live show from CES 2010. Leo Laporte joins us on stage to discuss the impressive penetration of 3D at this year's show, Skype on your television, and the soon-to-be growing catalog of Netflix streaming titles.Subscribe with iTunes (audio) Subscribe with iTunes (video) Subscribe with RSS (audio) Subscribe with RSS (video) EPISODE 1140
HP: ‘Slate’ PC shown by Ballmer set for some time in 2010 http://www.betanews.com/article/HP-Slate-PC-shown-by-Ballmer-set-for-some-time-in-2010/1262879692 http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/technology/8444672.stm
Microsoft promises Natal for 2010 … Read more
Sometimes a man can be betrayed by his wife in a good way.
A 61-year-old woman from Bridgend, Wales, had been married to her husband, for almost 20 years when, according to a court report from the Telegraph, she noticed a curious message on their computer at home.
She focused and realized that the message had been sent by an underage girl to whom her husband had been sending messages in a chat room. The message was of a sexual nature and included her husband's original message to the girl.
Perhaps some spouses would have been so stunned as … Read more
MB Feng Shui Bagua is a fun, easy-to-use bit of freeware that helps you apply the Chinese system of feng shui to your own home. The simple graphic interface takes you step by step through the process of mapping your home, including all the rooms and doors. The program then breaks the area into "bagua" to give advice on everything from furniture to colors.
Although the graphics are rudimentary, most users should be able to re-create their homes fairly accurately. We had some problems with things like multiple floors or rooms that weren't symmetrical, so it would … Read more
Room Arranger offers to help users by setting up a virtual room or rooms. While the controls require a steep learning curve, many users may feel that the exciting results are worth it.
This program definitely requires users without prior design experience to make a trip to the online Help file. Here, users will get a better idea of what the confusing icons and command buttons, which are scattered throughout, do. Designing a room was surprisingly simple after we got a feel for the program and did a little experimenting. Users choose the dimensions of their room and can even … Read more
Auto speaker setup and calibration is a popular feature on almost every receiver and a lot of home-theater-in-a-box systems.
Sure, it sounds like a peachy idea, but the accuracy of auto setup is hardly a sure thing; and at their worst, auto setup systems sound worse than no setup at all.
Ideally, the setup system automatically determines speaker sizes (large or small), measures speaker-to-listener distances, sets the volume levels of all of the speakers, determines the proper subwoofer volume level, checks that all the speaker wires' "+" and "-" connections are properly oriented at the speaker and receiver ends, and calculates the subwoofer-to-speaker crossover point. Some receivers also employ EQ (equalization) curves to correct for speaker and room acoustic anomalies.
What's not to like? Well, it the auto setup worked perfectly, nothing.
But they're mostly flawed: Subwoofer calibrations are almost always off. Auto calibration systems boost the sub volume much too high, and overestimate the sub distance to the listener by a factor of two (so a 10 foot distance becomes 20 or more feet).
Worse yet, auto setup systems rarely set the subwoofer-to-satellite speakers crossover frequency to the optimum point. That is, they tend to set the crossover too high, say 150 Hertz, which unnecessarily restricts the speakers' bass response. The speakers might sound better with a lower crossover setting. I recommend 80Hz for all speakers with 4- to 6-inch woofers; 100Hz for 3-inch woofers; and higher settings of 120Hz or 150Hz only for the tiniest speakers.
Accessing the measurement data post auto setup can be tricky on some receivers. Then you really don't know what you have.
Thing is, manual setup isn't all that difficult and will likely be more accurate. And chances are you wouldn't muck up the distances as poorly as the autosetup would. Running the test tones over the speakers and manually adjusting the sound by ear or with a Radio Shack meter isn't so hard to do.… Read more
While we're not in for the show on this good Memorial Day, we decided to embed our appearance on FOXNEW.com's Strategy Room's Gadgets and Games show. Our good friend Claytom Morris invited us to discuss everything from the latest "Ghostbusters 3" rumors to unboxing the Asus Eee PC Seashell and our thoughts on the Palm Pre. We also chat about a slimmer PS3, how a HTC Touch Pro causes some one's pants to catch on fire, the Queen gets a gold plated Nintendo Wii, and a possible Apple netbook or tablet.
Check it … Read more