Audio Video News September 2008

Samsung BD-P1500 Blu-Ray Player Review 
Overclockers Online :: Tuesday, September 30, 2008
Samsung makes another return to Overclockers Online but this time we get the luxury of reviewing the Samsung BD-P1500 Blu-ray DVD player. This is not Samsung’s first Blu-ray player as it’s the 4th generation model and there have been significant improvements over this model and the BD-P1400, the model replaced by the P1500. The P1400 had average performance and we’ll soon see if the P1500 has solved all of those.

x264 Benchmark Results 
Tech ARP :: Monday, September 29, 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.”

Dell Studio Hybrid Video Spotlight 
Hot Hardware :: Monday, September 29, 2008
With a low-power Intel Core 2 Duo processor under its hood, the Dell Studio Hybrid is capable in many mainstream user applications and could make for a decent Home Theater PC. Aficionados may scoff at the system’s integrated Intel X3100 graphics, however, the Studio Hybrid has more than enough power to playback full 1080p resolution content with its Core 2 Duo dual core processor, 5400RPM 160GB hard drive, and DDR2-667 system memory. As a minimalistic business-class machine, family computer or college-bound bookshelf PC, the Studio Hybrid has all of the basic features of a full sized system, in a sleek, stylish, eco-friendly footprint. Come on by the site and check out the Dell Studio Hybrid in our latest video spotlight…

No Country For Old Men HD Movie Review
Tweak Town :: Thursday, September 25, 2008
“A hunter (Josh Brolin) arrives at a grisly scene of bodies, sprawled across a Texas landscape. The back of a pickup truck leaves exposed dozens of bags of heroin; evidence of a drug deal gone bad. When he stumbles on a bag stuffed with millions of dollars, his decision to take it sets in motion his own manhunt by the hands of a crazed psychopath (Javier Bardem), and the Texan sheriff (Tommy Lee Jones) whom must solve these crimes unlike anything he has seen before.

No Country For Old Men has been lauded by critics since release and currently sits at 94% on Rotten Tomatoes. Directed by Hollywood darlings; the Coen Brothers, it certainly comes to Blu-ray with high expectations. It’s these same expectations that I didn’t feel quite proved themselves, despite some truly terrific performances, particularly by Bardem.”

VOX TV-R HDD Media Player/Recorder
Techware Labs :: Tuesday, September 23, 2008
Tired of having to be home to watch that show you like? Now you dont have to. Its the VOX TV-R. Small, portable, and sporting a plethora of handy features, the TV-R not only lets you record shows off of your television, but playback digital movies, view pictures transferred from your computer and much, much more.

Roku Netflix Player Reviewed 
The Tech Lounge :: Tuesday, September 23, 2008
“It’s clear that the shortcomings are all Netflix-based, the greatest of all being selection. They don’t have a lot of recent content, and they have a lot of content rated three stars and worse. Often with TV shows, they will have some but not all episodes of a season. But they’re adding things constantly, and generally expanding as fast as they can afford to. By the time I thought I’d watched everything I thought was worth my time, I checked again and found an equal quantity of media gems. (Like Jesus Christ: Vampire Hunter. How can that possibly go wrong!) Of course, even that’s not entirely up to Netflix, they have to prove to the developers and owners of the content that streaming is the way to go; there’s a real “we’re all pulling together” sense about this stuff. There’s potential.”

Home Theater Essentials
Digital Trends :: Monday, September 15, 2008
“Whether you are on a budget, or have a money tree, we have the home theater gear for you!”

$200 Xbox 360 Arcade: A Perfect Media Extender? 
Digital Trends :: Monday, September 15, 2008
“The Xbox Arcade is actually one of the very best media extenders in the market, for the price, and for those of us who like to move our music and video around the house, $200 for a media extender with the capability of the Xbox 360 is one heck of a bargain. It has a built in scaler (not a great one, but at least it has one), a DVD player, and it can stream video from a PC, UPnP server, or Xbox Live. That gives it more capability (if you include the games) than Apple TV and it costs substantially less thanks to the game subsidy.”

Audio Archiving Guide: Part 1 – Music Formats
Techgage :: Wednesday, September 10, 2008
Have a large music collection just waiting to be archived? We’re here to help! In this three-part series, we’ll be tackling all there is to know about properly building your collection, from choosing the right codec, to ripping, to archiving. In this first article, we’ll take the frustration out of finding the perfect codec – one that fits your style, and needs.

NMEDIAPC Wireless Keyboard with Track Ball & Remote Combo Set Review
Think Computers :: Friday, September 05, 2008
“If you own a HTPC you might want to take some interest in the NMEDIA HTPC Wireless Keyboard and Remote Combo Set. This set is composed of two quality products with plenty of features for your typical and not so typical HTPC uses. The ergonomic and intelligent design makes for a comfortable use and natural feeling. Operating on the 2.4GHz RF spectrum you have the ability to use this set up to 10 meters from the receiver even if you have an obstacle (insert annoying family member) in the way, unlike conventional TV remotes.”

Maximum Risk HD Movie Review
Tweak Town :: Thursday, September 04, 2008
Over the last two decades, Jean Claude Van Damme has kicked, punched, stabbed, shot, and otherwise murdered and maimed thousands of villains. Yet, much like Blofeld to his James Bond, one man whom deserves to pay for his sins has so far eluded him: His agent.

It’s no secret that Van Damme has made more than his fair share of cinematic bombs, and unfortunately his rarely good or at least passable films will be lost to his rather dubious reputation. Maximum Risk certainly falls into the latter category, however the plot is a little more complicated than most (maybe arbitrarily so), so listen carefully!

Samsung LN40A650 40inch LCD HDTV
Overclockers Online :: Tuesday, September 02, 2008
The LN40A650 comes packed with features including multiple HDMI inputs, VGA input for older computers, ATSC tuner, LAN, InfoLink, WiseLink and Anynet. The Samsung panel produces magnificently stunning and mouth dropping pictures. Everyone who has seen my new TV was envious of it.

Tagan A+ Black Pearl WCR
APH Networks :: Tuesday, September 02, 2008
Here in North America, everything is bigger the better. The bigger the TV, the better. The bigger your computer monitor, the better. The bigger the fridge, the better. That’s because big houses here are really that common. But in that regard, “the bigger the house, the better” is almost a universal appeal. That said, you got to see the cars around here (Or USDM cars if you don’t live in US or Canada). For almost every new design, cars gets longer and wider by a few inches. Check out the new Honda Accord. Or heck, today’s Civic is the size of an Accord a decade back. Then there’s computer cases. Is the bigger the better? It seems that full tower cases has garnered more appeal than ever before. I don’t recall anyone owning anything more than midtower beige boxes in 2001. Lately, computers with hot running components, half a dozen hard drives, and a couple of graphics cards that extends past the edge of your motherboard, it’s not illogical that large full tower eATX cases are landing in the home of many computer enthusiasts to accommodate all those components. Today, we’ll take a look at the Tagan A+ Black Pearl WCR case — an update to their popular A+ Black Pearl chassis, now with pre-drilled holes for water cooling support. Built by Lian Li, the company with a reputation for legendary quality cases, the Tagan A+ Black Pearl looks like a winner on paper. But how does it accomplish its task in real life? We’ll have to see about that in our review today.

Toshiba XD-E500 Review 
Digital Trends :: Tuesday, September 02, 2008
“Just when I thought that I would probably never review a DVD player gain, Toshiba introduced their new XD-E500 1080p up conversion DVD player. Toshiba, who was one of the co-inventor’s DVD technology, and also the creator of the now defunct high-definition HD DVD optical disc, is coming back to the DVD marketplace with a new upconverting DVD player. Why? While still licking its wounds from the loss of its high-definition optical disc format, Toshiba has unveiled a new video processing technology called ‘XDE,’ which stands for ‘Extended Detail.’ According to Toshiba, XDE offers enhanced picture performance from standard definition DVDs. Toshiba has also realized the folks are not quite ready to give up their DVD players just yet in favor of Blu-ray players either, and are still quite fond of their DVDs. So, the idea of XDE was born in hopes of breathing renewed life into the DVD format. The new model XD-E500, which is housed in a sleek and very slender black cabinet, is priced at $149.95 retail. I expect it to be $99 by the Holidays.”