Looks like it’s a bumper day at the Philips factory, with two more systems falling off the assembly line. This time, it’s micro DVD players. The 2.1 MCD802 (left) packs wireless subs, two 200W speakers and can record MP3s from any input source. It’s also DivX friendly, which is handy if you download and burn your own movies. The MCD388 (right) is wall-mountable, and will upscale your flicks to full 1080p HD. The MCD802 is US$325 and MCD388 is US$245. Both are available right now.
E-Vision has just announced it will provide HD-quality content to viewers in the UAE. You’ll need to shell out 30AED per month for the three ‘complimentary’ channels, and the decoder box will cost an additional 1,000AED. The good news, the set top box includes 250GB of internal storage for recording movies or shows, and will let you pause or rewind live TV. That’s great for our current Prison Break addiction, not so great for maintaining this blog…
Sharp just announced the Aquos D-series, ten super-slick HD TVs ranging from 32 to 52in. They support full 1080p picture, come with three HDMI ports and have a 15,000:1 contrast ratio. A Clear Double Speed function detects image movement, making visuals silky smooth, while Active Conditioning automatically corrects contrast for optimum clarity. These are Sharp’s first foray into the world of Internet TV, and so all are compatible with online video services like Netflix and Hulu. Available for you living room in early June.
[via Akihabara News]
Having drooled over Seagate’s answer to digital downloads in February, we’re excited to see it finally launching in the region. This simple box lets you transfer downloadable HD content to your living room telly. Just download files to your PC, transfer them to your FreeAgent portable hard drive, stick the drive into the Theater’s slot and attach it to the TV. It supports all major codecs, 5.1 surround sound and resolutions up to 1080i. It’s available now for around US$190.
Posted in computing, online, TVs, video
Tagged 1080i, 5.1 surround sound, DivX, FreeAgent, FreeAgent Theater, FreeAgent Theatre, hard drive, HD, Seagate, Xvid
The first small-form PC to utilize Nvidia’s Ion platform (the combination of an Nvidia GPU and Intel Atom processor) is the Acer AspireRevo. Priced about US$300, it boasts HD output, 4GB RAM and up to 250GB of storage. It’s going to be marketed the same way netbooks were, as low cost secondary machines, but expect some wild claims that it will handle gaming and HD content just fine. We’re not sure about that – the Atom chip is the N230 which can’t decode 1080p. Still, that doesn’t stop you installing a few emulators, plugging it into your TV and running it as a cheap media centre/retro gaming console.
Posted in computing
Tagged 4GB RAM, Acer, AspireRevo, HD, Intel Atom, Ion, Media centre, N230, netbooks, Nvidia, Retro gaming
Fibre to the home (FTTH) may sound like door-to-door carpet sales, but it’s actually the D’s Bs of connectivity. Super fast (100Mbps) optical broadband makes it the perfect gateway for HD video-on-demand, IPTV and online gaming. UAE telco Etisalat has announced that Abu Dhabi will be fully hooked up with FTTH by the third quarter of this year, with Sharjah and Dubai to follow. The whole country is expected to be hooked up by the end of 2011. Time to reconsider VoIP policies?
Posted in online
Tagged 100Mbps, Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Fibre to the Home, FTTH, HD, IPTV, online gaming, optical broadband, Sharjah, video-on-demand, VoD, VoIP
BenQ is the latest manufacturer to jump on the all-in-one PC trend, with its i221. It has a 1.5GHz Sempron CPU with 1GB of RAM, a 160GB hard drive (with options for solid-state) and ATI Radeon X1200 graphics card. Windows XP Home comes preloaded, and its gorgeous 21.5in screen supprots 720p high def. The best bit? It’ll only cost you around US$500. Not bad for a home companion to that netbook.
Our eyes are never happier than when gorging on HDTV. Why then, do most high-def system look past their style sell-by dates? Not this one. Philips’ zesty DVD player’s svelte sides and rounded edges complement its delicious bass and succulent sound. The four wireless towers each have a soft dome tweeter and 2.5in woofer, while the amplifier can blast out a whopping 150-watts. Philips claims the HTS9810 produces as much atmospheric quality as nine speakers, but we’ll settle for giving it a good lick. Yummy.