Three visits by a Time Warner Cable of NYC technician and two trips to NYC from Virginia by Velocity Micro's Chris Morley, and today I finally brought up a Vista-based CableCard signal on a Velocity Micro CineMagix Grand Theater system. I actually have two CableCards working, each plugged into its own ATI TV Wonder Digital Cable Tuner PCI card. That means I can watch digital cable on one channel and record another at the same time with full, TiVo-style automation through the Vista Media Center-based channel guide software. Throw in the Blu-ray drive, an Nvidia GeForce 8800 GTS graphics … Read more
If you spend all day at a computer but would rather be out driving twisty roads in a Corvette, this desktop theme will assuage your passion, a little. GM let software maker Stardock use its Corvette brand to create a full Windows desktop theme. Stardock has been redesigning the Windows interface for a long time, so this theme does more than add a Corvette picture to the wallpaper and change a few icons. The software pack comes with a Corvette-themed media player, a Corvette clock and calendar, and a weather application, presumably so your computer can tell you if it'… Read more
If you head on over to our list of desktop reviews, you'll see four new HP desktops at the top. We reviewed a new SlimLine (which received an Editor's Choice nod), and we also have previews of two other Pavilions, as well as a new bargain-basement Compaq.
The models featured are all fixed-config in-store systems, and they all include dual-core CPUs, Windows Vista Home Premium , and LightScribe DVD burners. That's impressive, considering that two of the four come in at under $600, but we're also glad to see that HP revamped its systems' visual appeal, adding … Read more
Add ThinkSecret to the list of outfits predicting a June launch for Leopard, the next version of Mac OS X.
The latest report says Apple will formally launch the new OS in June, in or around Apple's Worldwide Developers Conference kicking off on June 11. Apple used last year's conference to highlight several features inside Leopard, and might just use this year's to launch the OS and take the wraps off some "secret features" hinted at by CEO Steve Jobs last year.
There's been some news about CableCard-ready PCs around the Web lately. Vendors Niveus and Velocity Micro announced shipping systems, and a competitor previewed an early build of Dell's forthcoming CableCard system. After two days of hammering away on a sample system, as well as some digging around with Microsoft, we think we have a clear picture of the PC-based CableCard situation as it stands today.
It is indeed true that Velocity Micro was shipping CableCard-ready home entertainment PCs. Niveus may have gotten one or two out the door as well, but they have both had to push shipments … Read more
Did you know it's been 204 days since the last iMac update? That number might mean more to you and your tech purchasing patterns if we also told you that, according to MacRumors.com's calculations, the average span between iMac updates is 168 days. Thus, the MacRumors Buyer's Guide concludes that you should hold off buying an iMac until Apple makes good on the overdue refresh. Similar guidance is provided for all Mac desktops and laptops along with iPods, Cinema Displays, and Xserve servers. The snapshots of where Apple's various products are in their refresh cycle … Read more
Hewlett-Packard's Digital Entertainment Center (DEC) systems are getting taken out in a pine box. We give credit to HP for taking a chance on this niche market--it was the only mainstream vendor to sell an A/V-style living-room PC--and we generally liked the DEC systems we saw over the years, including the last model we tested, the DEC z560. The systems were attractive, well designed, and much more affordable than systems from boutique Media Center vendors such as Creature and Niveus.
We're not surprised that HP decided to kill off the DEC line, however, because mainstream consumers never … Read more
Increasing memory capacity and reducing the footprint of mobile phones is akin to taking one step forward and one step back. The two sort of cancel each other out.
Instead of trying to do both, CMWare is introducing a service called myMobileMedia, a PC-based place-shifting technology that streams media content to MP3-enabled phones. Other companies, like Orb Networks and Avvenu, have the same idea, but myMobileMedia's hook is its ability to stream even DRM-protected content.
CMWare's proprietary technology allows all music files, including those purchased from Apple's iTunes Store, to be played without violating any DRM rules, … Read more
Another week, another cool touch screen video that everyone's e-mailing around the office.
The latest most-forwarded is the CeBIT demo video below, which is a collaborative effort between TouchKo, White Electronics Designs, and Groupe 3D. A cross between a monitor and a Wii controller (without the actual controller), the "touchless touch screen" responds to hand movements directly in front of it; you don't even have to come into contact with the screen.
Looks pretty neat, but also kind of exhausting. Although we haven't seen one available in stores yet, the concept of a "touchless … Read more
Digitimes is reporting that the next release of Mac OS X, code-named Leopard, will not ship until October of this year as Apple works to ensure compatibility with Windows Vista.
Sounds a little hard to believe, but the report says that with the inclusion of Boot Camp inside Leopard, Apple wants to make sure that Mac owners will be able to run Vista and Leopard on the same machine. Boot Camp, currently in beta, allows Mac users with Intel's chips to run Windows XP on their systems. Apple plans to include a final version of Boot Camp with Leopard.… Read more