Archive for October, 2009

ASUS changes course, unveils ‘first’ USB 3.0 / SATA 6Gbps motherboards

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Can it be? Has the same company that dashed dreams by axing its USB 3.0-laden P6X58 motherboard back in July really just revived our hope in humanity? Out of nowhere, ASUS has just unveiled the first range of motherboards to support USB 3.0 and the newest SATA specifications, the latter of which brings along 6Gbps data throughput. The one-two punch belongs to the Xtreme Design P7P55D-E series of mainboards, which support the latest Core i5 and Core i7 processors. Sadly, just two USB 3.0 ports are onboard, while a total of ten dedicated USB 2.0 sockets are scattered about. Feel free to pore over the detailed specs in the release past the break, and get ready to find the P7P55D-E Premium mobo ($299) and U3S6 expansion card ($29) at retailers next month.

Lenovo teases new ThinkCentre all-in-one desktop

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Lenovo isn’t offering any more than this picture of its new ThinkCentre all-in-one desktop just yet, but it’s already clear that it’s not messing around with this one. How can we be so sure? It has a map of the world on it, and maps mean business. It also doesn’t look like we have to wait too long to get the full story on it, as Lenovo is promising to make things official at the EDUCAUSE 09 conference early next month.

Google Navigation video hands-on: you want this

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We apologize for being fanish, but Google has pulled off something with its new Navigation elements in Google Maps (or is it Google Maps in a Navigation app? It’s hard to tell) that has serious ramifications for a navigation device industry used to charging money for functionality. The introduction of satellite view, a tasteful touch of street view (peep a still of your next turn, or see your destination), and of course regular stuff like spoken directions and street names, and Google’s voice recognition applied to search (anywhere on the device just tap voice search and start your phrase with “navigate to”) make this a pretty astonishing offering for what’s essentially a free app with the purchase of an Android 2.0 device. The biggest worry here is that if you lose signal you won’t be able to pull maps, but while there’s no whole-map caching, it does cache a route when you enter it in, so as long as you don’t stray too far from the beaten path you should be fine with a dropped signal here or there. But enough of our blather, check out a video walkthrough after the break.

Nokia’s N97 mini gets its shipping papers

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Right on cue, the smaller-but-just-barely N97 mini is now ready for public consumption over in Europe. Granted, we’re certainly at the tail end of October, but we can’t say that we caught Nokia in a lie or anything based on what was said last month in Stuttgart. You’ve already committed the specifications to memory and read all about firmware 2.0, so now all that’s left to do is run along, fork out €450 ($667) and wonder forever if this decision will positively or negatively change the course of your life.

Sony recalls 69,000 AC adapters due to shock hazard

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Oh, Sony. You’ve been doing so well with not making things blow up lately. Even a seemingly minor fizzle turned out to be a false alarm. While it’s not laptop batteries this time, it seems that Sony has run into a bit of trouble with some of the AC adapters used for its VAIO all-in-one desktops and docking stations. Specifically, the insulation used in adapters for the company’s VGC-LT and VGC-JS2 series desktops and VGP-PRBX1 and VGP-PRFE1 docking stations can apparently fail over time and pose an electrical shock hazard for users, although there have been no reports of injuries to date (and only four reports of any short circuiting). Still, it’s probably a good idea to take Sony up on its offer for a free replacement. Hit up the link below for all the necessary details.

Netflix streaming purportedly hitting Nintendo’s Wii next

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Mmhmm. We see precisely where this is going. First came Microsoft’s Xbox 360, then came the PlayStation 3. Now, the beast that is Netflix‘s “Watch Instantly” is coming to Nintendo’s Wii… or that’s the scuttlebutt, anyway. According to StreamingMedia, an undisclosed source close to the project has confirmed that the Big N is currently testing Netflix streaming on the Wii, and that it’ll be rolled out to the public “very soon.” Our initial reaction is to think that “very soon” will translate into “before the holidays,” though we all know that only time will tell. But hey, when you’ve been waiting for this to happen since March, patience comes naturally.

0.75cm thick player: Yinlips YDP308 MP5 Player with 3.0 inch LCD- 4GB

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Following the Yinlips YDP301 comes the YDP308, a slimmed down 3 inch screen player that’s measures in at 0.75cm thick.Cased in a black mirrored metal shell, the latest British Lipp model’s chip apparently has a dual-core ARM + DSP and supports AVI, RM, RMVB, FLV and more at 800 x 480 resolution and at 30 frames per second.

Product page: http://www.ownta.com/yinlips-ydp308-mp5-player-with-3-0-inch-lcd-4gb.html

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Nintendo DSi LL goes large in Japan on November 21

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Whoa, it’s true: the rumor of a bigger screen DSi was just validated by Nintendo. Shipping November 21st in Japan, the 4.2-inch DSi LL is priced at ¥20,000 (about $221). The above comparison is straight from the Big N showing the DSi LL vs. the white DSi. Besides the obvious increase in height and width, the 21.2-mm handheld is chubbier than the 18.9-mm DSi but slimmer than the 21.5-mm DS Lite when it ships in your choice of dark brown, burgundy and natural white. The battery seems to be roughly on par with the DS Lite going for about 4 to 5 hours on maximum brightness and intensity or 13 to 17 hours when dialing back the display to its lowest settings. No word on US or international shipping yet but obviously they’d be smart to get this out in time for the holidays. A few more pics and a full spec-by-spec comparison with the DSi and DS Lite after the break.

Apple’s Magic Mouse now shipping: seeks mighty revenge

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Apple’s Mighty Mouse was one of the most loved and loathed rodents of all time. When it worked, it was a magnificent productivity booster for Mac users. Unfortunately, over time, even after hours and hours of vigorous rubbing, the top-mounted trackball would become so ensnared in hand-jam that owners were left with two options: delicately splay the mouse for a bit of X-acto home surgery… or smash it with a vengeance hammer until justice is served. So maybe now you can understand all the hopeful fuss made over its successor: the Magic Mouse. It’s now shipping to those of you who ordered it separately from its iMac bundle. Snow Leopard users can even download the software update now so that all those multi-touch and gestural features will be enabled once the bluetooth mouse arrives. Then we’ll see if this is the mouse that rights all those wrongs.

ASRock readying three Ion-powered nettops, one with a BD drive

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The nettop might not be the most riveting piece of machinery out there, but ASRock‘s hoping to generate at least a small amount of buzz by outfitting its next trio with NVIDIA’s Ion graphics technology. Reportedly, the Ion 330HT, Ion 330Pro and Ion 330HT-BD will all ship with a dual-core 1.6GHz Atom 330 processor, up to 4GB of DDR2 RAM, 7.1 channel audio, gigabit Ethernet, HDMI / VGA outputs, six USB 2.0 sockets and a powered eSATA port. The 330HT and 330HT-BD are both bundled with MCE remotes, while the latter also gets its DVD burner swapped out with a Blu-ray drive. There’s no mention of a price or release just yet, but we’re figuring that both of those points should be clarified shortly.

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