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RockBand Mic reveals the game will be hitting the Wii

Posted in Games,Wii by Conner Flynn on January 29th, 2008

Rock Band Mic
It was only a short time ago that Harmonix had finally announced the release of standalone instruments for Rock Band. At the time there was no word of a standalone mic. As it turns out, it is already on sale. The packaging teases us with a single word. Wii.

No, that doesn’t simply mean yes in France. It means that Rockstar should be hitting the Wii sometime soon. This isn’t the best picture, but if you look in the top right corner of the package, you’ll note which systems it’s compatible with: Playstation 3, Wii and Xbox 360. This is interesting because so far Harmonix has been strangely silent about a version of the game for Nintendo’s console.

Amazon MP3 announces plans for global takeover

Posted in music,Services by Reuben Drake on January 27th, 2008

Amazon announces plans to roll out globally with Amazon MP3 music serviceAmazon today announced plans for an international rollout of the Amazon MP3 music download service to take place sometime yet this year. This announcement is probably the biggest threat to Apple’s mammoth iTunes to date as it likely to cause the reining media download leader to make some changes in coming months to keep up with the competition.

Once Sony BMG came onboard Amazon became the only online retailer to offer downloadable MP3′s from all of the four most major music labels that are all also DRM-free. Amazon MP3 now boasts over 3.3 million songs available with no restrictions on what player or computer the songs can run on, and no restrictions of how many places users can copy it to.

Cambridge Audio shows off classy turntable

Posted in Cambridge Audio,Turntables by Nino Marchetti on January 23rd, 2008

Cambridge Audio TT50Cambridge Audio recently revealed a new turntable for those who like the touch and feel of vinyl. It is called the Cambridge Audio TT50 and you’ll find this modern take on a retro device priced at around $500.

The Cambridge Audio TT50 was designed in partnership with turntable manufacturer Pro-Ject. You won’t find any USB ports for ripping your 45s to your computer – this is a plain old turntable like your daddy used to have. It does however sport gold plated phono/RCA connections for connecting to your home A/V receiver.

Apple, fearing competition, cuts DRM-free songs to 99 cents

Posted in Apple,iTunes,News by Reuben Drake on October 16th, 2007

Steve Jobs and Apple drops the price of the premium iTunes Plus tracks to 99 centsToday in an interview with the Wall Street Journal Steve Jobs said that iTunes will be reducing the price of their DRM-free tracks from the current $1.29 down to 99 cents. These songs from iTunes were launched as iTunes Plus back in May and offered a number of titles, mostly from EMI, without any digital rights management restrictions. They also came in a little higher quality for a little more money with 256 kbps AAC encoding compared to the 128kbps encoding for the rest of the 99 cent versions. “It’s been very popular with our customers, and we’re making it even more affordable,” said Jobs in the interview.

This move brings Apple’s prices a little closer to those of Wal-Mart and Amazon who both offer song downloading services with DRM-free music with some titles going for less than 99 cents. This also will make iTunes slightly more desirable compared to new players coming into the online music game such as Doug Morris and Universal Music Group who are looking to make some competition for Apple in a different way.

Amazon fires up public music download service

Posted in Amazon,MP3,News by Nino Marchetti on September 25th, 2007

Amazon launches public music download service DRM freeAmazon.com went full steam into downloadable MP3s today, unveiling a beta version of Amazon MP3, its new digital music download store. Most songs will range in price from 89 to 99 cents, while albums will run you $5.99 to $9.99.

Amazon MP3 features over 2 million songs from more than 180,000 artists represented by over 20,000 major and independent labels. All downloads will be MP3s which are DRM-free, meaning there’s no restrictions on what device or music management software is used to play them. Songs can even be burned to CD.

Starbucks giving away 50 million iTunes songs

Posted in Apple,iTunes,News by Chris Weber on September 24th, 2007

Starbucks teams up with Apple iTunes to give away 50 million to promote Now PlayingStarbucks along with Apple iTunes has announced that they will be giving away 50 million iTunes songs at Starbucks locations to help promote the mobile iTunes store and Starbucks’ Now Playing service. On October 2 the iTunes Wi-Fi Music Store will launch with a service provided in Starbucks locations which will display the current song playing through the Apple iPhone in the stores and allow users to buy and download the song without paying any hotspot fees.

In the additional promotion announced today which will run from October 2 through November 7, Starbucks locations will be giving away “Song of the Day” cards that can be redeemed that the iTunes store for a free song download (selected by Starbucks). The coffee company is planning on giving away 1.5 million downloads per day to total more than 50 million songs, so the odds of you getting one when stopping through a Starbucks next month are not too shabby.

iTunes Ringtones Now Online

Posted in Apple,iTunes by Reuben Drake on September 11th, 2007

Apple iTunes Ringtones are now available onlineiTunes now has the available ringtones for the Apple iPhone turned on where users can choose from over 500,000 tracks that bear a special “ringtone” symbol next to them and make their own custom ringtone. The interface allows users to choose the section of the song they want and add some “mix”, such as looping, fading and selecting the section of the song.

All this comes for just $1.98 for each $0.99 song because remember, owning the track alone isn’t quite enough, you must pay for it again to use it as a ringtone. Happy Tuesday.

John Lennon Solo Catalog Hits iTunes

Posted in iTunes,music,News by Chris Weber on August 16th, 2007

John Lennon’s solo catalog of music now available on iTunesApple has announced that 16 solo works by John Lennon through EMI are now available for download through iTunes. These songs will also be offered as part of the iTunes Plus program where you can pay an extra 30 cents to get the songs DRM-free and at 256 kbps AAC encoding.

“John would have loved the fact that his music will now be available in a format suited to a new generation of listeners,” said Yoko Ono in the Apple press release

Lennon marks the second of the Beatles artists to allow iTunes to sell their solo albums after Paul McCartney, and rumors have it that talks between Apple and the widow of George Harrison are in the works as well. Apple so far has had no luck however with bringing Ringo Star or the collective Beatles …

iTunes song sales exceed 3 billion

Posted in Apple,iTunes,News by Chris Weber on July 31st, 2007

Apple says its song sales through iTunes has exceeded 3 billionAccording to a report just last month Apple became the third largest retailer of music in the U.S. beating out Amazon.com and trailing only the likes of Wal-mart and Best Buy. Now Apple has announced that its overall sales have reached an incredible 3 billion songs with the last holiday season undoubtedly being a large contributor to this number.

This number consists of songs only, mind you, and doesn’t include any videos. And with Apple’s 100 million plus iPods in the market the recent launch of the iPhone and improving technology for media downloading this trend doesn’t appear to be slowing down for any music vendor, much less Apple.

Reuters

MindSpa Personal Development System

Posted in Health,Home,Sleep by Darrin Olson on April 7th, 2007

Mindspa Personal Development SystemWhile the MindSpa sounds and lights gadget might not directly turn you into an actual superhero, even with the glasses, it is designed as a Personal Development System to help you become more creative, relaxed and rejuvenated which could bring you one step closer.

The handheld MindSpa uses lights and sounds that work together through earbuds and special glasses to provide different desired results such as being deeply relaxed, or to induce a stimulated state of mind to help the creative juices flowing. The device has at least a dozen programs with it that target everything from boosting energy to optimizing performance or to help with sleep.

It’s difficult to say what type of files the $250 device plays or if you can upload your own songs, but then again some speed metal combined with the lights could very possibly send you into a

Motorola T605 Automotive Bluetooth Music System

Posted in Bluetooth,Motorola,News by Quagmire on November 1st, 2006

MotorolaMotorola has introduced a new hands-free system for automobiles that is designed to offer easy access to digital music and phone calls directly through the sound system in your car.

The Motorola Automotive Music & Hands-free System T605 allows users to use their Bluetooth-enabled Motorola phones or digital music players to stream audio wirelessly through the car’s speakers and take phone calls without moving your hands from the wheel. The T605 will pause your tunes when it detects that a call is coming in and resume the music when the call ends. The digital signal processing technology also detects increases in background noise and increases the volume as background noise increases. The T605 also features a jack for MP3 players that aren’t equipped with Bluetooth.

The new hands-free system is sure to make it easier for everyone who needs to apply cosmetics, scold kids, smoke cigarettes, …