Author Archive

Palm Treo 800w gets official

Posted in Palm by Shane McGlaun on July 15th, 2008

Palm Treo 800wThe Palm Treo was one of the original smartphones. As new handsets have hit the market the Treo has become mostly overshadowed by cooler options. Despite that fact, the Treo still continues on and back in May we saw a spy shot of the new Treo 800w.

Palm has now officially launched the Treo 800w and announced that the device is a Sprint exclusive handset. The 800w will sell for $249.99 after discounts and 2-year agreement. The handset will operate on Sprint’s EVDO Rev A network for fast broadband speeds.

Toshiba Qosmio X305-Q701 Best Buy exclusive gaming notbook

Posted in Toshiba by Shane McGlaun on July 15th, 2008

Toshiba Qosmio X305 Gaming notebookGaming notebooks are known for a few things—power, gaming performance and a high price. Your typical gaming notebook will often cost three times or more the amount that you can get a normal notebook for. Not all notebooks for gaming are hugely expensive though and Toshiba has introduced a new gaming machine that has a very reasonable price.

The new Toshiba Qosmio X305-Q701 is a Best Buy exclusive system that retails for $1,549.99. The machine has Toshiba’s slick looking fiery finish with Rouge design. Graphics for the notebook are via NVIDIA GeForce 9700M GTS discrete card and the CPU is an Intel Core 2 Duo P7350 processor.

Open Air Cinema complete backyard theater kit now available

Posted in Home Theater by Shane McGlaun on July 14th, 2008

Open Air Theater KitDuring the summer several local parks in my area have movies that you can watch outside for free. If the idea of movies outside appeals to you; but you don’t want to have to sit around watching with a bunch of stinky, sweaty strangers Open Air has exactly what you need with its new backyard home theater kits.

The kit is called the CineBox Home and comes with everything you need for showing movies in your backyard. Options for either a 10-foot or 12-foot inflatable screen are available. In addition to the screen the kits also include the other gear you need to get started.

Creative announces Zen X-Fi and X-Fi with Wireless LAN DAPs

Posted in Creative by Shane McGlaun on July 14th, 2008

Creative ZEN X-FiWhen Creative first launched its X-Fi technology it was seen in sound cards for computers. The X-Fi sound cards were very good and offered excellent sound for PC gaming and movies. Since the launch of the X-Fi technology creative has rolled X-Fi out to other product types.

The latest product to get the X-Fi treatment is the ZEN line of digital audio players. Creative announced today that the ZEN X-Fi with Wireless LAN DAP is now available. The player features a 2.5-inch TFT screen with support for 16.7 million colors, SD card slot for memory expansion, a built-in FM tuner with 32 presets and a built-in mic for voice recording.

Ruyan Freestyle E-cigar for the non-smoker smoker

Posted in Accessories by Shane McGlaun on July 11th, 2008

Ruyan Freestyle E-cigarAnyone who doesn’t smoke can tell you that if you hang out with those who do smoke, at one point or another they try and get you to smoke too. If you like the idea of a cigar, but don’t actually want real smoke, nicotine and the risk of cancer that real smoking brings you might try the E-cigar.

Ruyan’s Freestyle E-cigar is a fake cigar that uses a microchip, airflow sensor, atomizer, and liquid cartridge to produce a dense vapor that looks like smoke from a real cigar. The upside is that it’s not real smoke and has none of the problem associated with real smoke.

Belkin FlyWire makes home theater installs clean as a whistle

Posted in Belkin by Shane McGlaun on July 11th, 2008

Belkin FlyWireIf your home theater is anything like mine you have a HD satellite box, PS3, Wii, Xbox and a few other items all trying to connect to the two available HDMI ports and other connectors on my TV. Then there is the problem of all the wires, which my wife seems to complain about with far too much frequency.

Belkin has a device that will go on sale in late October that will take care of both these problems called the FlyWire. The FlyWire comes in two versions with the normal FlyWire coming in October and the FlyWire R1 coming in Q1 2009.

Seagate steps up with 1.5TB desktop hard drive

Posted in Seagate by Shane McGlaun on July 10th, 2008

Seagate Barracuda 7200.11 1.5TB HDDOne thing we always want more of for our computer is storage capacity. Hitachi was first out of the gate with its 1TB HDD back in January of 2007 and Hitachi recently announced its second generation 1TB drive with some significant power savings.

Seagate wasn’t going to be beat to market with a hard drive of over 1TB, like it was beat to market with the original 1TB drives. Today Seagate announced the world’s first 1.5TB desktop hard drive called the Barracuda 7200.11 1.5TB.

Samsung Instinct is Best Buys best selling handset

Posted in Samsung by Shane McGlaun on July 10th, 2008

samsung-instinct.jpgAll of the mobile phone makers want to grab their share of the touchscreen mobile phone market. This has resulted in a slew of would be iPhone killers hitting the market and so far not one of the iPhone me too’s has really made much of a dent.

When Samsung introduced its sprint exclusive Instinct handset it even looked a lot like the iPhone and many wondered if it would be another disappointment. It only took a few weeks after the Instinct’s introduction to see that it was a hit with Sprint saying it was breaking sales records and due to its popularity the device was hard to find.

Samsung aims at YouTube crowd with new SC-MX20 camcorder

Posted in Samsung by Shane McGlaun on July 9th, 2008

Samsung SC-MX20 CamcorderCamcorders have steadily come down in price to the point where they are nearly disposable. Many low cost camcorders produced today record video digitally in formats that are compatible and easy to upload to services like YouTube online. Samsung unveiled its latest camcorder today aimed at YouTube users called the SC-MX20.

The camcorder features a 680K pixel CCD sensor and can record video at a resolution of 720 x 480 with good color and clarity. The SC-MX20 has a 34x optical zoom lens to let you get up close from afar. Samsung integrates optical image stabilization and Face Detection into the camera as well.

i.Sound Back Up Battery fits iPhone 3G and iPod

Posted in Mobile Accessories by Shane McGlaun on July 9th, 2008

i.Sound Backup Battery for iPod/iPhoneI have a first generation iPhone and like it a lot. One of the worst things about it though is that if you watch many videos on it the battery drains very quickly, iPod owners have this same problem. This fact has led to the proliferation of back up batteries for the iPhone and the iPod. Some batteries are only for the iPhone like the iPhoneck we talked about before.

If you want something a bit more universal that will work for your iPhone, the iPhone 3G coming this week and your 30-pin connector iPod, i.Sound has the battery for you. Called simply the i.Sound Back Up Battery the little device is a 2-in-1 charger that can charge your phone and the internal battery at the same time.

i.Tech dual mic i.VoicePRO Bluetooth headset launches

Posted in Mobile Accessories by Shane McGlaun on July 8th, 2008

i.Tech i.VoicePRO Bluetooth HeadsetOver the last several months many states have moved to a hands free law that means all drivers in the state can only use a cell phone when coupled with a hands free kit like a Bluetooth headset. Many drivers in states that still allow you to hold your phone and talk when driving prefer Bluetooth headsets as well.

A new Bluetooth headset from i.Tech has launched called the i.VoicePRO and it claims to be the first Bluetooth headset on the market with dual microphones using Bluetooth Profile v2.1. The dual mics mean that the headset has superior noise filtering properties.

Canon gets new entry-level EOS Rebel XS DSLR camera

Posted in Cameras by Shane McGlaun on July 8th, 2008

Canon EOS Rebel XSFor the most part people tend to stick to point-and-shoot digital cameras for taking pictures of kids, friends and family. However, there often comes a time when a amateur photographer realizes that the point-and-shoot camera isn’t cutting it and decides to step up to the DSLR camera.

Today Canon introduced a new entry-level DSLR camera aimed at just this sort of person. The Canon EOS Rebel XS is going to be available in August at a price of $699.99 with an EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS zoom lens, rechargeable battery and more. The Rebel XS is the little brother to the Rebel XSi we talked about in January.

IOGEAR launches pair of new memory card readers

Posted in Iogear by Shane McGlaun on July 7th, 2008

IOGEAR GFR281 Memory Card ReaderNot too long ago my memory card reader died on me. Several people I know asked me why exactly I bothered with a memory card reader when I can just connect my DSLR/phone/MP3 player directly to my computer. The answer is that with a memory card reader I don’t have to remember to turn the camera or device back off.

Every time I hook my Nikon D80 up to my computer I tend to forget it’s on and the next time I need it my battery is dead. IOGEAR announced a couple of new card readers today that are exactly what I need to replace my dead one. The GFR209 is a 12-in-1 Pocket Card reader/Writer that retails for $11.95. The GFR 209 can read and write to SD, miniSD, MMC, Memory Stick, and MS Duo cards. It’s also tiny and very portable at only 2.5-inches long and under 1-inch deep.

Averatec launches 22-inch All-In-One PC

Posted in Computers by Shane McGlaun on July 7th, 2008

Averatec All-In-One PCThe concept behind all-in-one PCs is interesting to me. You cram everything a PC needs inside the LCD case and save space on the floor and make things more attractive overall. The downside of an all-in-one design is that they tend to offer less performance than can be had on traditional computers and they tend to cost more than similar standard computers.

Today Averatec announced its first all-in-one computer and it is simply called the Averatec All-In-One. The computer has a 22-inch display and inside the display case is crammed 2GB of RAM, a 320GB HDD, built-in HDTV tuner and more. The computer is powered by an Intel Core 2 Duo E4600 CPU and uses a discrete NVIDIA GeForce 8400 for graphics.

Hobbytron M4 ElectricAirsoft Rifle is perfect for woodpeckers

Posted in Accessories by Shane McGlaun on July 4th, 2008

M4 Electric Airsoft RifleSince the summer began my house has been besieged by woodpeckers. The birds pecked on my house until they have actually made holes in the eaves. I really want to get rid of the little red head birds, but I don’t want to just go postal on them.

Despite the fact that I don’t want to just kill them, I wouldn’t mind knocking them a bit senseless and the M4 3181 AEG Airsoft Rifle with M203 Spring Grenade launched might do just the trick. Yeah, it has got one seriously long name but is there any denying how cool it looks?