When TiVo discontinued its high-end cable-ready high-def DVR, the TiVo Series3, it was really just making room for a new product in the line: the TiVo HD XL. The new TiVo is a near twin of the existing TiVo HD, but for three changes: it's got a much larger 1 terabyte hard drive (enough capacity for 150 hours of HD programming); it's THX-certified; and it includes the premium TiVo backlit remote. The package costs $600--about the price that the TiVo Series3 was going for, and twice that of the "standard" TiVo HD. As with any TiVo, of course, you'll also need to budget money for a subscription fee: $13 a month, $129 a year, or $399 for the lifetime of the box. True, you can do a DIY upgrade on the standard TiVo HD by adding the improved remote ($50) and a 500GB expansion hard drive ($150), but that will cost nearly as much and still leave you with less recording capacity--and a lot of extra wires. That said, the original TiVo HD is still going to be the better buy for most viewers, while the XL model is more appropriate for die-hard TiVo fans or those who like to load up their box with lots of HD TV shows, movies, and digital downloads. … Read more
Earlier this year, Sharp introduced the BD-HP20U, which was the company's first Blu-ray player and at the time offered the fastest load times of any standalone Blu-ray player, loading up discs in as little as six seconds. Sharp is now following up on its initial player with two new models--the BD-HP21U and BD-HP50U--which both offer the quick start feature and relatively low prices tags. Let's take a look at their key features:
Key features of the Sharp BD-HP21U:Blu-ray Profile 1.1 Onboard decoding for Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD Master Audio Quick start option loads discs … Read more
Just got my Buy.com "Weekly Deals" email blast and noticed that there's a promotion for a $59.99 HD DVD player with two free movies. The DVD player is some no-name job--the Venturer SHD7000--that I've never heard of, and no specs are available. Not sure who would buy this (HD DVD is dead, in case you've just emerged from a coma), but I suppose if you had a large HD DVD collection and are in need of back-up player you might be tempted.
Anybody still buying HD DVD players or movies out there? No … Read more
Wireless chipmaker Amimon is set to announce Thursday that Mitsubishi will use its technology to send high-definition TV signals to its latest LCD TV without wires. It will come in 40-inch and 46-inch sizes. The 40-inch model will cost 300,000 yen (or $2,731), and the 46-inch model will sell for 400,000 yen ($3,642).
Mitsubishi's TV will have the chips embedded in the TV, and will come with a separate receiver unit that can send and receive uncompressed … Read more
Update at 11:45 a.m. with additional information about Intel blogger.
Aaron Brezenski, the blogger, states the following in describing his posts: "Aaron Brezenski has been at Intel (Chandler, AZ) since 1995 and has been a product engineer for most of that time. He currently manages a team of product development engineers in STTD, but his nefarious purpose in (Intel Software Network) Blogspace is to highlight Intel Integrated Graphics in the Home Theater PC space from an end-user perspective."
An Intel engineer has posted a discussion about performance issues with its newest Centrino 2 graphics silicon.
The … Read more
Following in the footsteps of BMW, Mercedes-Benz announced it will offer HD radio in some of its 2009 models. HD radio is a digital broadcast that offers CD-quality sound for FM stations. BMW has been offering it on its models for the past year, and now Mercedes-Benz will include it as an option on the 2009 E-, M-, R-, GL-, and G-class, all but the E-class being SUVs.
Most radio stations in major cities have an HD broadcast now. There are approximately 40 stations in San Francisco alone. Because the format requires less bandwidth, many stations have multiple HD channels. … Read more
The reviews are in for AMD's new high-end 3D card--the embargoed, but not exactly secret 2GB Radeon HD 4870 X2--and the official results are as enthusiastic as the previews. By all accounts, the $550 Radeon HD 4870 X2 is the fastest desktop 3D board on the market, outpacing Nvidia's flagship GeForce GTX 280 card on most tests.
According to the results on PC Perspective, Hot Hardware, ExtremeTech, and Anandtech, AMD's new card comes up faster than both a single $450 GeForce GTX 280 as well as two $250 GeForce GTX 260's. Nvidia may steal a win … Read more
MacRumors.com is reporting on a rumor that Apple will announce its new Cinema Displays at MacWorld San Francisco 2009, set to take place January 5 through 9.
It's been nearly four years since CNET reviewed Apple's 20-inch, 23-inch, and 30-inch Cinema Displays, all of which used normal lamp-based backlighting to illuminate the displays. The most exciting prospect for the new versions is that they are expected to use LED-based backlighting.
LED technology in displays is kind of the new hotness right now, with good reason. Lamp-based LCD solutions are never able to achieve true, deep blacks because … Read more