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Samsung PX2370 Reviews

3 May

Samsung’s monitors have often had the upper hand when it comes to looks, and the PX2370 tech gadgets are no exception: it’s gorgeous. The screen sprouts from a slender see-through stand, it measures barely 18mm thick, and the clear plastic trim that clings to the bezel helps it melt subtly into its surroundings. If aesthetics alone were enough to guarantee a monitor’s success, the PX2370 would sell in droves.

You may get a beautiful-looking monitor but there’s no fancy, high-quality IPS panel at its heart. Instead, you get standard TN technology, measuring 23in across and with a Full HD resolution.

Dab the touch-sensitive power button and the monitor springs to life. It’s bright – we measured it at 287cd/m2 – and colors are vibrant and well-adjusted out of the box. Testing didn’t show up any horrendous shortcomings either, with only slight banding in grey scale transitions.

The PX2370 tech gadgets isn’t hugely better than the far cheaper Hanns.G HL231, however. Our X-Rite colorimeter showed the PX2370 giving an average Delta E reading of 3.6 and peaking at a maximum of 7.5 in the greens. The colour temperature reading was just a little way off from the ideal of 6,500k at 6,732k, and gamma a bit off at an average of 2.0. We’d expect the LED backlighting to be better too. On a black screen, it leaks in from every side.

Even worse, the price is far too high, which means it’s an option only for those who crave looks over quality. In these Labs you’ll find several more capable monitors that cost considerably less.

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Toshiba Satellite L655-S5161Reviews

26 Apr

The good: The 15-inch Toshiba Satellite L655-S5161 is a good entry point for midsize laptops with Intel’s second-gen Core i-series processors, and we’ve always liked the company’s sleep-and-charge USB ports.

The bad: The design is strictly no-frills, and there are no high-speed data ports, such as USB 3.0 or eSATA. Plus, we hate the shortened spacebar on the keyboard.

The bottom line: Though not particularly inspiring, the basic 15-inch Toshiba Satellite L655 has a current-gen CPU and can be found for around $600, making it a worthwhile budget choice.

With numerous laptops spread across its L, C, A, M, T, E, W, and R series, Toshiba may not run out of new product lines until it runs out of letters. We’re pretty sure the midprice L series is above the entry-level C series tech gadgets, and below the premium A series, but that’s as far into Toshiba’s numerology (letterology?) as we’re willing to delve.

That said, these L-series laptops (which carry the Satellite name) have always been workhorse machines, closest perhaps to Dell’s Insprions; they typically include decent mainstream parts for $500 to $650. The latest version, called the Satellite L655-S5161, has Intel’s second-gen Core i3 processor, basic integrated graphics, 4GB of RAM, and a 500GB hard drive–about as generic a loadout as a budget-minded laptop can get.

For less than $650 (we’ve seen it for as little as $619), it’s not a door-busting bargain, and we were able to configure a comparable Dell for the same $619. But extra features, such as the sleep-and-charge USB ports (which can power phones and other devices even when the laptop is off) give it a leg up on the similarly priced competition.

Toshiba covers the L655, as most of its recent Satellites, with a dark silvery gray pattern, under one of the glossiest finishes we’ve ever seen. It could probably pick up fingerprints from someone just looking at it. Inside, the same pattern follows through to the keyboard tray and wrist rest, but the keyboard itself is jet black.

The body feels sturdy, but the trade-off is a thick, chunky laptop that isn’t going to win any modeling contracts. It’s also about a pound heavier than a 14-inch Satellite L-series laptop we looked at last year, so we wouldn’t suggest lugging it around on your daily commute (a couple of days per week is probably fine).

Flat-topped, island-style keyboards are the norm now, and Toshiba has had nearly the same one on its last several generations of Satellite laptops. The 15-inch version includes a separate number pad, with very generous number keys, as well as large Shift, Tab tech gadgets, and other useful keys. However, Toshiba has not yet fixed its main keyboard flaw: an aggravatingly shortened spacebar, which can be murder for touch typists.

The matte multitouch touch pad lies flush with the rest of the keyboard deck and can get a little lost under your fingers, but it’s well-complemented by a pair of large mouse buttons, which have a shiny surface and a convex shape for no discernible reason.

Toshiba continues to include the genuinely useful sleep-and-charge feature, which lets you use a USB port to power or recharge devices such as a mobile phone or media player, even if the laptop is asleep or off, via either the battery or AC power.

Also included are a couple of proprietary media/productivity apps. Book Place is an e-book reader/store, powered by a company called Blio (’cause it’s really hard to find places to buy e-books online). And we’ve seen Toshiba’s ReelTime before; it’s essentially a system history browser, displaying recent documents and Web pages in thumbnail form along the bottom of the screen.

The 15.6-inch display features a 1,366×768-pixel native resolution, which is standard for the size. Movies and 720p HD video look fine, although the glossy screen coating can pick up glare from nearby lights. A pair of narrow speaker grills sits right above the keyboard, but they didn’t push out much volume.

The tech gadgets of Toshiba Satellite L655’s connection options are on the bare bones side, as it doesn’t have Bluetooth, USB 3.0, or eSATA. You can’t expect too much for around $600, but we think a high-speed data port of some kind is essential these days for many users.

While this year’s Intel processors (still called the Core-i series, but the second generation of them) have shown distinct performance and battery life improvements over last year’s versions, the difference is more pronounced in the more mainstream Core i5 chips. With a lower-end 2.1GHz Intel Core i3-2310M, you’ll get a perfectly fine system for general laptop use, from multitasking to HD video playback, but other recent laptops, including Toshiba’s 13-inch Portege R835 tech gadgets, performed better. But, unless you’re doing a lot of high-end video editing, it’s unlikely to slow down or stutter under even a heavy multitasking workload.

Intel’s new integrated graphics are better than last year’s, but still not a substitute for a dedicated GPU. In Street Fighter IV, running at 1,366×768 pixels, we got 16.1 frames per second, while our older Unreal Tournament III test, at the same resolution, ran at 58.6 frames per second. That means basic gaming is possible, if you dial down settings and resolutions (and games such as World of Warcraft should play fine), but this isn’t going to be a heavy-duty gaming rig.

Source from CNET

Acer Iconia Tab A500 Reviews

25 Apr

The good: The Acer Iconia Tab offers Android Honeycomb on a 10.1-inch screen along with GPS, front and rear cameras, Adobe Flash compatibility, full-size USB host port, HDMI output, and a reasonable price.

The bad: The Iconia Tab is thick, and one of the heaviest consumer tablets we’ve seen. Some locally stored HD video files wouldn’t play properly.

The bottom line: Acer’s Iconia Tab offers the features of the Motorola Xoom at iPad-beating prices but weighs in as the heftiest Android tablet yet.

Motorola made a splash in early 2011 when it released the first tablet to run Google’s tablet-optimized Android 3.0 operating system (aka Honeycomb). But enthusiasm for Google’s tablet OS didn’t translate into Apple iPad-level success for Motorola’s Xoom tablet, which was hampered by a high price and thick design. At the time, though, Motorola’s exclusive agreement with Google made it the only game in town when it came to Android 3.0. Fortunately for tablet fans, those days are over.

The Acer Iconia Tab A500 doesn’t stray far from the Motorola Xoom’s formula. Spec-for-spec, the two tablets are nearly indistinguishable. The most important distinction is price, with the Iconia Tab tech gadgets coming in at an iPad-besting $449.

Design
In spite of the $50 savings over an iPad 2, Apple doesn’t have much to worry about when it comes to the Iconia Tab. Like the Motorola Xoom, the Iconia Tab is nearly twice as thick as the iPad 2, making it less comfortable to hold and less sexy in general. Acer’s tablet also has the unfortunate distinction of being the heaviest Android tablet we’ve tested, weighing in at a beefy 1.69 pounds.

As with any decent tablet tech gadgets, the centerpiece of Iconia Tab’s design is the screen. Measuring 10.1 inches and boasting an LED-backlit 1,280×800-pixel resolution, the tablet’s screen does the Android experience justice. And because Honeycomb moves the Android navigation controls off the hardware and into the touch screen, a crisp, accurate screen is more critical than ever.

Flip it over, and you’ll find a 5-megapixel camera on the back with an integrated LED flash. The back is covered with gunmetal-finished aluminum, with the exception of two strips of plastic that meet your hands at the edges. Near the bottom you’ll see a pair of stereo speaker grilles cut out from the aluminum. We worried that our hands would naturally cover up the speaker–and they did–but oddly, it had no effect on the sound quality. Sound seemed to project through the screen more so than the speaker grilles, which is ultimately fine, if a little illogical.

A camera is also located on the front, near the upper left corner of the screen. Meant to be used for video chatting (using the included Google Talk app) or impromptu self-portraits, this camera uses a lower 2-megapixel sensor, but can still be used to record standard-definition video.

On the sides of the Iconia Tab tech gadgets you’ll find a number of logically placed ports and buttons. A volume rocker and orientation lock switch are available on the top edge. On the left you’ll find the power button, headphone jack, and Micro-HDMI. The right side supports the included power adapter, and offers Micro-USB sync, and a full-size USB host port for connecting keyboards or thumb drives. A dock connection on the bottom sticks out like a wart on an otherwise attractive design. Unless you feel like shelling out an extra $79 for a charging cradle that doesn’t even offer an HDMI connection, the dock port is a waste of space.

Hardware features
Like we mentioned at the start of this review, the Acer Iconia Tab is nearly a spec-for-spec clone of the Motorola Xoom (Wi-Fi). Inside, both devices take advantage of a dual-core Nvidia Tegra 2 processor and 1GB of RAM, and each boasts 802.11 n Wi-Fi, an integrated HDMI output, support for Bluetooth 2.1, an accelerometer, a gyroscope, GPS, a digital compass, and memory expansion via MicroSD.

But, for all their similarities, there are some differences between the Xoom and Iconia Tab tech gadgets. One notable difference is the amount of onboard storage. The Xoom includes an integrated 32GB whereas the Iconia Tab offers only 16GB. In Acer’s defense, the Iconia Tab offers a useful full-size USB host port, while the Xoom (not to mention the iPad) does not. And though it’s a small thing, we’re glad to see that Acer included a dedicated screen-rotation lock instead of burying the feature in the system menu tray.

Source from CNET

Verizon CFO suggests next iPhone will be a ‘global device’

24 Apr

We’re guessing it wasn’t on the company’s agenda for its earnings call earlier today, but Verizon CFO Fran Shammo let slip one other interesting iPhone tidbit in addition to its news of 2.2 million iPhone 4 activations. Here’s what he said:

The fluctuation, I believe, will come when a new device from Apple is launched, whenever that may be, and that we will be, on the first time, on equal footing with our competitors on a new phone hitting the market, which will also be a global device.

That pretty clearly suggests that the next iPhone — supposedly coming in September — will be a world phone, which just so happens to coincide with rumors to same effect we’ve heard as recently as this week. Of course, there’s been talk of a dual-mode GSM / CDMA iPhone electronic gadgets even before that, considering that the Qualcomm baseband chip used in the Verizon iPhone is technically capable of supporting both CDMA and GSM networks — Apple simply chose not to or wasn’t able to take advantage of that particular functionality at the time.

sourceBarrons Engadget

Samsung Galaxy Tab

22 Apr

We know it’s unfair to compare the Galaxy Tab to the iPad – just look at their relative sizes – but compare them we must. Samsung takes much of the blame by trying to go head to head with Apple for price: £529 inc VAT for the 16GB version with 3G tech gadgets; £599 for 32GB with 3G However, since launch it’s dropped to a far more reasonable £469 inc VAT.

The tablets’ disparate sizes make a big difference. For a start, you can fit the Tab into a jacket. You can also comfortably hold the 385gTab in portrait mode and use your thumbs to type. Thanks to Samsung including Swype – a brilliant way to enter text by swiping across the onscreen keys rather than hitting each one – we were able to reach quick typing speeds too.

It holds other advantages over the iPad: Samsung bundles a pair of good-quality in-canal earphones complete with a discreet microphone, so you can make a call using the Tab without looking a fool. A 1.3-megapixet camera on the front allows video calls, whiles the Tab’s rear 3-megapixel camera, complete with LED flash, is surprisingly good in natural light.

Samsung also makes it easy to use your choice of SIM card: slip one in and the Tab reboots. Wait ten seconds and the system is up and running, all settings correctly configured. Next to the SIM slot sits one for microSDHC cards, allowing you to add up to 32GB of storage.

When it comes to fit and finish, however, the iPad wins hands down. While the Galaxy Tab is well built, it’s plastic and lacks its rival’s gadget allure. The same is true when you turn it on, with Android’s interface looking basic by comparison; the fonts are blocky, with none of the i Pad’s finesse. This is when it strikes you the Tab really is just an overgrown Android phone tech gadgets.

Fortunately, it’s an overgrown phone with a rather nice screen. Measuring 7in diagonally, its biggest strength is sheer brightness. Pump it up to full and photos pack a real punch, so much so it could fool you into thinking it’s a Super AMOLED panel rather than a plain-old TFT.

That 7in diagonal is a big improvement over the typical 3-4in of an Android phone. The 1,024 x 600 resolution adds a surprising level of detail, making a huge difference when web browsing. Along with support for Flash, this opens up the ability to access countless Flash games and education resources, but don’t expect the Tab to keep up with fast-moving videos on BBC Sport’s website: football clips appeared more like a slideshow than a match.

This juddering sometimes stretches into daily use; too, as moving from one home screen to another can cause the Tab to stutter. We suspect this is an optimization problem, because the Tab’s 1GHz ARM-based processor proved more than ample for the supplied You Tube app. Games look brilliant too, with the 3D effects and sheer gameplay of Asphalt 5 HD hooking us just as much as driving games on a PC.

Expect a battery life of around four hours per charge, dropping down to three if you use the screen on full brightness. That’s a long way behind the iPad tech gadgets, and means we’d always take the communication cable with us: the Galaxy can charge up over the (proprietary) USB connection without problems.

So, the Galaxy Tab has its flaws, but there’s a huge amount to like about it. The problem for Samsung remains the price. Until it can match the iPad’s smooth interface and rich selection of HD apps, it needs to be priced accordingly.

Beats by Dr. Dre get the ColorWare treatment, minus the color

21 Apr

Now, you’d think ColorWare would be working furiously to release some flashy iPad 2 tech gadgets, but that’s not what we’re getting today — instead we now have a pair of Monster headphones to complement that ever-so-necessary neon Dyson Air Multiplier we assume you’ve already added to every room in your tastefully decorated mansion.

These very limited edition ColorWare “Chrome Beats” headphones don’t actually have any color, but they admittedly do look pretty slick, excepting the $1,000 price tag necessitated by this perfect storm of overpriced branding. ColorWare is only decking out 50 of these ‘cans, so grab that platinum card and head over to our source link to get your pair.

Source from Engadget

Samsung’s W200 Takes On Kodak’s Playsport In Waterproof Camcorder Showdown

21 Apr

Samsung’s W200 Takes On Kodak’s Playsport In Waterproof Camcorder Showdown

Samsung has announced the W200 tech gadgets, a vacation-proof 1080p camcorder that boasts a bigger LCD and faster lens than its natural enemy, the Kodak Playsport. I’m not sure the W200 is going to win any beauty contests, but at least spec-wise it’s looking good.

It shoots 1080p video through its F/2.2 lens (the Playsport has a F/2.8) and displays it on a 2.3″ screen (versus the Playsport’s 2″). Beyond that the differences kind of dry up, although the ability to “pause” recording and continue with the same video file later will be handy to a lot of people who don’t want to fiddle with editing afterwards.

It goes down to 3 meters underwater, and is safe against basic drops and dust. They claim a water-drop resistant coating, which may or may not be real; we’ll have to get our hands on it to determine that.

Motorola delays Droid Bionic launch until summer to make ‘several enhancements’

20 Apr

There’s not a lot of details on this one, but the Wall Street Journal has just confirmed with Motorola that the launch of the Droid Bionic tech gadgets will be delayed until summer, and that it might not be available for purchase until sometime in the third quarter (or late summer, in other words). As for the reason for the delay, a Motorola spokesperson would only say that the company is “incorporating several enhancements to make this an even better consumer experience,” based on feedback its received since the phone was announced way back at CES in January.

Source from Engadget

Creative Zii 0 7in x 10in

19 Apr

The key to Creative’s Zii0 7in and 10in electronic gadgets , which will ship with Android 2.1 with the promise of an upgrade to 2.2 “early in 2011″, is that they play to the company’s strengths. The Pure Android audio app is nicely put together, with a Bluetooth device manager directly within for linking to external speakers. For even greater control head to Creative’s X-Fi Crystallizer and Expand enhancements.

Its apt-X codec allows for high-quality audio streaming, and it works: when Creative demoed the device to us, we discovered that the sound streamed to some tiny ZiiSound T6 5.1 speakers packed a punch. As did the poor souls working within 100 yards of our demo room. The 7in device’s TFT screen has an 800×480 resolution, increasing to 1,024×600 on the 10in device, and both were reasonably bright. The big sticking point will inevitably be the resistive technology. Yes, we’d prefer capacitive; yes, we’d prefer multitouch; but it isn’t a disaster. That said, tasks that require a lot of swiping and dragging may soon start to grate, and the fixed buttons at the foot of the screen were also a little unresponsive.

The hardware doesn’t have the solid feel of the Samsung Galaxy Tab electronic gadgets, but neither of the Zii0s feels cheap. There’s a front-facing camera and accelerometer, plus a card slot to expand the capacity for big music and video collections-SD on the 10in and microSD on the 7in. There’s no 3G, and the Zii0 doesn’t support the official Android Market. Creative wants you to head to the ZiiStore. Suffice to say, our hopes aren’t high.

If s good to see Creative attempting to transfer what it knows best – sound quality – to tablets. But what really appeals about the Zii0 range is its price. The 7in model costs only £200 inc VAT for 8GB and £220 for 16GB. The 10in Zii0 is barely dearer, at £2 SO and £270 for 8GB and 16GB respectively. Archos could have a serious rival on its hands.

MSI GeForce GTS 450 Cyclone

19 Apr

It’s not so long ago that the first graphics card touting NVidia’s GTS 450, the Asus GTS 450 TOP, passed through the TechRadar labs. When first checking it out, we were impressed but hoped for a price tag a little closer to the £100 mark. Well, someone was listening, because MSI’s overclocked GTS 450 Cyclone is almost bang on our proposed target.

It runs at 67MHz above stock speed for a card of this ilk, with a healthy 434MHz boost to the memory speed, but the main feature is the wide windmill-like cooler. It’s whisper quiet and drops the temperature down to just 27C when idle. The card itself is small and requires just a single six-pin power connector, and is more or less price comparative with AMD’s HD5770 tech gadgets.

The MSI GeForce 450 Cyclone is a healthy step up from a vanilla GTS 450 in terms of performance, and is excellent value. Even with completely maxed out settings, it got every game we tried on it running at a playable speed at the key full HD resolution of 1,920 x 1,080 barring Just Cause2.

Regardless of fans and overclocks, the basic GeForce GTS 450 is still just about half of a GeForce 460 with a higher clock speed and a narrower memory bandwidth. Given that stock versions of the 768MB version of the GeForce GTX 460 are available for just £125, that extra £20 is well spent.

The GTS 450 tech gadgets have the advantage over the GTX 460 of being smaller and requiring less power, which makes it a strong candidate for an SLI set-up, but it can’t really compete in benchmarks.

It is, however, now pitched directly up against the HD 5750 in pricing terms thanks to the on-going NVidia/AMD graphics card price wars. And that is a card the GTS 450 happily beats into submission in any benchmark you throw at it.

It delivers top performance for a card costing just a bit over £100 and hammers the price-comparative HD 5750 on all counts. It’s also quiet, small and only requires one power connector, making it a flexible option for SLI oranHTPC.

But as big an improvement as it is over the stock GTS 450 tech gadgets though, you don’t have to spend much more to get a clearly superior card like the GTX 460 768MB. It’s hard not to believe that won’t have more longevity and be better value in the long run.