Audio Video News December 2008

Samsung BD-P2500 Review
Tech Review Source :: Saturday, December 20, 2008
“Blu-ray DVD technology has been taking off recently and prices on the Blu-ray players have dramatically come down over the past year. If you’re in the market to buy a new DVD player for your home entertainment setup you might want to take a look at getting the Samsung BD-P2500 Blu-ray DVD player. It delivers very good image quality and sound features, such as Netflix streaming functionality, that help make it one of the best (and one of the cheaper) Blu-ray DVD players around.”

x264 Benchmark Results 
Tech ARP :: Friday, December 19, 2008
What’s x264, you ask? It’s more or less the next-generation Xvid/DivX codec. I think it’s ideal for a benchmark because the application (x264.exe) reports fairly accurate compression results (in frames per second) for each pass of the video encoding process, and it uses multi-core processorsvery efficiently.”

Christmas 2008 Blu-ray Gift Guide
Tweak Town :: Thursday, December 18, 2008
As I write this, the Christmas gifting season is in full swing – shopping is a nightmare and if you don’t know exactly what you want before you get there, it’s even worse.

That’s where your friends at TweakTown have stepped in to help you select the best Blu-ray discs to give as presents (or even better; to buy for yourself). To make it nice and easy, I have broken titles down by genre, capped numbers to five per genre and have limited it to Australian titles that are now on retail shelves.

10 Best Blu-ray Players 
Digital Trends :: Friday, December 12, 2008
When considering the best Blu-ray Disc players available today, we looked at audio and video quality-high-end video processing with 12-bit or 14-bit Deep Color-aiming to reproduce the most realistic picture. But a few caveats to note when doing your own research as well: · Most players now have Bonus View (a picture-in-picture capability for some discs) and BD-Live support for unlimited online special features. · Quick start is a convenience feature on some Sony and Samsung players that eliminates that interminable wait for loading discs and menus on many players. · New players from LG and Samsung offer not only Blu-ray Disc playback, but also add the ability to downloadNetflix movies. Samsung adds the online Pandora music player too. That having been said, following are our best choices for quality and features in terms of what’s currently on the market. Although, as an honorable mention, don’t forget the Magnavox NB500MG9 either, a cost-effective way for anyone to get into the Blu-ray Disc world, even on a budget. Because given the magic of high-definition, online-connected movies, well, Let’s just say that, no matter which model you choose, the whole family’s a winner. Go to the next page to start our list of the top 10 best Blu-ray players.

Samsung MediaLive Media Streamer Review
Digital Trends :: Thursday, December 11, 2008
In the vast swirling ocean of digital media, getting your files out of the office and into the living room is often a chore. Apple tried heroically with the Apple TV, but it’s certainly not as popular as the iPhone or the iPod – or even as the Mac itself. Now Samsung is getting into the game with the MediaLive, a device that works with Windows Media Center PCs and supports dual-band Wi-Fi (over 802.11n in both the 2.4GHz and 5.0GHz bands). Be advised, though: While you’re going to need a lot of popcorn with extra butter for this one, don’t expect an entertainment experience that’s always rich and pleasant.

Panasonic LUMIX DMC-G1 Review 
Digital Trends :: Wednesday, December 10, 2008
“One of the biggest digicam breakthroughs in 2008 was the announcement of the Micro Four Thirds System. What’s that you say? You’ve never heard of it – unlike the Wall Street crash of ’08 or Obama’s landslide? Perhaps not, but it was big news for camera enthusiasts. In a nutshell, the system lets manufacturers build compact digicams that accept a wide variety of lenses, just like D-SLRs. Unlike popular digital single lens reflex cameras, there is no mirror mechanism, or optical viewfinder, so the new cameras are much smaller than typical D-SLRs. This is cool stuff, and we had Panasonic send us a sample of the new 12.1-megapixel Lumix DMC-G1 as soon as possible. For the record, Panasonic and Olympus are the prime movers behind the new format. In fact, they also are the key proponents of the original Four Thirds System found in current D-SLRs from the two companies; unlike the Micro Four Thirds, these cameras have mirror assemblies. We seriously doubt Canon, Nikon, Pentax and Sony will adopt either one. Does this new format make sense-and how does it perform? In a few clicks, you’ll know the answer.”

Using HDMI Audio/Video On Linux
Phoronix :: Tuesday, December 09, 2008
“The last time we looked in-depth at HDMI support on Linux was last December when talking about HDMI with the ATI Catalyst Linux driver. Since then there has been improvements in a number of drivers for different hardware. In this article we have a brief overview on the status of HDMI support in the Intel, NVIDIA, and ATI Linux drivers.”

Asus My Cinema-U3100Mini TV Tuner Review
OCC :: Wednesday, December 03, 2008
“The Asus My Cinema-U3100 has only delighted me. It does what it is designed to do perfectly, unobstructed with any errors during operation. The fact that it uses USB is extremely handy since it can be used in virtually any computer, and is also portable. It also means that no tools are required to use this device. Since the coaxial adapter is flexible, it helps to relieve tension from thick coaxial cables – which helps keep the tuner from being knocked out from the USB port. The TotalMedia software works great, and is very simple and easy to follow – it is very intuitive. The only downfall of this tuner is that it is limited in use until ATSC is enforced in 2009 (2011 for Canada). But when that time comes, this gem will shine even more!”

Terminator 2 HD Movie Review
Tweak Town :: Tuesday, December 02, 2008
“There is no doubt that Director James Cameron, is a master of cinema. His filmography is littered with classics such as Titanic, Aliens and the original Terminator. Yet, bucking a trend of inferior sequels is this: Terminator 2: Judgement Day. It’s hard to believe that the film is now almost 18 years old.

Released at the dawn of computer graphics technology, it’s amazing that the visual effects in the film don’t look horribly outdated; the fact that they still look brilliant is astonishing. But above this, the underlying story is just as, if not more compelling than it was all those years ago, both as a human morality tale and a caution against the dark side of technology.”

How to Stream Audio & Video in your Home 
Digital Trends :: Tuesday, December 02, 2008
“A number of easily configured products are now available that allow you to wirelessly stream audio, video and digital content throughout your home, providing you have a wireless network present. We’re confident you’ll find all a ready, intuitive solution for enjoying multimedia in any room, and in a way that’s both fun and convenient.”

Samsung BD-P1500 Blu-ray Player Review
Tweaknews :: Monday, December 01, 2008
“When the dust is settled and the Blu-ray movies are put away, the BD-P1500 is a very capable BD player that has the “out of the box” functionality to be easily inserted or included into any recent home theater system. The picture quality was excellent and the audio playback was exceptionally clear.”