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Toshiba Tecra R10-S4401


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Lightweight, well-built, and offering plenty of performance, the Toshiba Tecra R10-S4401 is a well-rounded business machine with enough punch for plowing through spreadsheets or even through enemies on the digital battlefield. This $1,549 notebook also offers a helpful PC Health Monitor utility for anticipating problems and suggesting tune-ups. This is in addition to the hard drive protection, spill-resistant keyboard, and security features Toshiba typically offers on the Tecra line. The LED-backlit display and keyboard could be better, but overall the Tecra R10-S4401 is a good choice for business users on the go.


Measuring 13.3 x 9.9 x 1.1 inches and weighing 4.3 pounds, the Tecra R10-S4401 matches the Samsung X460-44P almost inch for inch and pound for pound. Its all-silver magnesium case isn’t as attractive as the Samsung’s black and red aesthetic, but this notebook offers a solid body that feels surprisingly light but sturdy.

The comfortable, well-spaced keyboard made typing a breeze, but the small touchpad and shallow mouse buttons will have you reaching for a wireless mouse. We also noticed that the keyboard layout exhibited more flex than we’d like. A fingerprint reader helps keep private information away from prying eyes, and two buttons (Toshiba Assist and Windows Mobility Center) allowed us to access and tweak system parameters quickly.

Display and Audio

Streaming Hulu episodes of It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia looked clear and crisp on the 14.1-inch (1280 x 800-pixel) backlit LED display. Some may find this resolution a bit low considering that a number of 14-inch systems (like the Lenovo ThinkPad T400) feature 1440 x 900-pixel panels, which makes it easier to view open documents side by side. We liked the wide viewing angles, but tilting the R10’s lid forward even slightly began to wash out the visuals (a gripe that we also had with the Toshiba Portégé R500).

Music streamed from Slacker was clear, but the stereo speakers located above the keyboard didn’t crank out loud sound when we turned the old-school volume wheel to its highest level. As with many business notebooks, the R10-S4401 lacks a strong bottom end for replicating bass and other low-frequency sounds. A 3-megapixel webcam and mic are embedded into the bezel above the display for videochatting, which provided respectable (if somewhat washed out) visuals in our office environment.

Ports and Connections

On the right side of the Tecra R10-S4401 you’ll find an Ethernet jack, one USB 2.0 port, a Wi-Fi on/off switch, an ExpressCard slot, and the 8X optical drive. On the left are headphone and microphone jacks, a volume wheel, a VGA port, the second USB port, and an eSATA port that doubles as another USB port that boasts Toshiba’s Sleep-and-Charge technology (this lets you charge USB devices whether the PC is on, off, or in hibernation or sleep modes).

The back of the system is completely free of connections (which prevents users from having to reach around to the back of the machine to plug in devices), and the front of the machine contains a memory card slot that only supports the SD format. A dock connector is located on the bottom of the Tecra R10-S4401.

Performance and Hard Drive

The Tecra R10-S4401 is powered by a 2.26-GHz Intel Core 2 Duo SP9300 processor and 3GB of RAM (expandable to 4GB) that kept the Vista Business OS running smoothly. The component combo helped the notebook achieve a PCMark Vantage score of 3,490, which is more than 250 points higher than the average thin-and-light system.

On our anecdotal tests, we transcoded a 2-minute-and-16-second MPEG-4 clip to H.264 in 51.7 seconds. Performing the same action while playing our There Will Be Blood DVD took a lengthy 3:47, but we experienced no audio or video skipping during playback.

A small but fast 160GB, 7,200-rpm shock-mounted hard drive aced the LAPTOP Transfer Test with a blazing 25.4 MBps speed, well above the 16.9-MBps average. The Tecra R10-S4401 booted the Vista Business operating system in 1 minute and 6 seconds, which is on a par with typical thin-and-light notebooks.


Thanks to Nvidia’s discrete Quadro NVS 150M GPU (with 128MB of video memory), the Tecra R10-S4401 proved itself to be no graphics slouch. It notched a 3DMark03 score of 5,965, double the category average, and a 3DMark06 score of 1,643 (more than 300 points lower than the Samsung X460). This allowed us to play F.E.A.R. at a very smooth 65 frames per second in autodetect mode (and a resolution of 800 x 600 pixels); this dropped to a still-playable 34 frames per second with the graphics bumped up to a resolution of 1280 x 800. These numbers are very similar to the Samsung X460-44P, which, powered by an Nvidia GeForce 9200M GS (with 256MB of memory), posted scores of 62 fps and 35 fps, respectively.

Wi-Fi and Battery Life

The 802.11a/g/n Wi-Fi radio on the Tecra R10-S4401 moved data at a rate of 20.2 Mbps when placed 15 feet away from our access point, but dipped to 16.5 Mbps at 50 feet; this closely matches the wireless performance of other notebooks in this class. Its strong performance made for a pleasurable Web-surfing experience as we were able to quickly dive into our favorite online videos, download podcasts, and stream Slacker Internet radio without a hitch.

Despite containing discrete graphics, the R10-S4401 demonstrated impressive endurance; on the LAPTOP Battery Test, the notebook lasted 4 hours and 23 minutes on a charge (which is also the category average), outpacing the Samsung X460-44P by 5 minutes.

Software and Warranty

In addition to Intel’s vPro technology (which allows IT departments to administer and repair systems remotely), the R10-S4401 is bundled with several programs, including Google Picasa, InterVideo WinDVD, Microsoft Office Professional 2007 (60-day trial), Norton Internet Security 2008 (60-day trial), and Toshiba’s VeriFace facial recognition software.

Toshiba’s 4th-Generation EasyGuard Technology now includes PC Health Monitor software for keeping your PC healthy running in top shape. It offers at-a-glance readings of the system’s remaining power, power consumption, battery health, CPU temperature, internal temperature, fan speed, and hard drive sensor. On our tests, clicking the Hard Disk Drive 3D Sensor allowed us to turn the protection on or off and manually set the movement-detection level. Toshiba covers the notebook with a three-year limited warranty and 24/7 tech support.


Priced at $1,549, the Toshiba Tecra R10-S4401 is one of the better business notebooks we’ve tested, and although we prefer the design and display of the Samsung X460-44P, the Toshiba costs $150 less. Business users who want to travel light without sacrificing performance or battery life will find the R10-S4401 a compelling option.

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Fujitsu LifeBook N7010


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With the N7010, Fujitsu simultaneously enters the emerging categories of 16-inch, 16:9 aspect ratio multimedia notebooks and touch-enabled laptops.

Shaking up the traditional notebook design, the N7010 has not one, but two LCDs under the hood; its secondary 4-inch Touch Zone display doubles as both a shortcut menu and as a way to show videos and pictures. This system also sports a multi-touch trackpad capable of multi-finger gestures. But while we are fans of both displays and the Blu-ray playback experience on the N7010, you don’t get as much graphics punch as you might expect from a $1,500 notebook.


Fujitsu went with a traditional black exterior on the LifeBook N7010, which gives it a more corporate look than other 16-inch notebooks on the market, but tiny metallic flakes in the cover give it some extra sparkle under the lights. Plus, some angular lines on the deck add a bit of flair. It’s fairly resistant to fingerprints, though you may want to keep a cloth handy to maintain the out-of-the-box shine.

The 15.2 x 10.9 x 1.9-inch desktop replacement is a bit on the heavy side at 7.4 pounds, but it’s not unreasonable for a system with a 16-inch screen. While it weighs 0.4 pounds less than the 16-inch Gateway MC Series, the Samsung R610-64G, by comparison, weighs only 6 pounds. Either way, while the system is light enough to tote from room to room, you’re probably not going to want to travel frequently with it.

Keyboard and Touchpad

Upon opening the lid of this notebook, you’ll find a glossy black frame surrounding its full-size keyboard. The keyboard deck has a good amount of wasted space—an inch and a half on either side. With all this room, we wonder why Fujitsu didn’t include a number pad. All the space below and above the keyboard (to accommodate the touchpad and the second display) makes the keyboard seem smaller than it is. Nevertheless, the spill-resistant keyboard provided good feedback.

The multi-touch touchpad has a slightly gritty texture to it, which we liked. We were able to configure the pad with the Synaptic drivers to respond to pinching gestures to zoom in on images and Web pages. Nestled between the right and left mouse buttons is a scrolling toggle, which we found useful for moving up and down long Web pages.

A Support button above the keyboard brings up a shortcut to Fujitsu’s support site and a diagnostic utility.

The notebook has a good number of ports: four USB, FireWire, eSATA, ExpressCard/34/54, Ethernet, VGA, and HDMI, but curiously, none is on the left side of the system; that’s reserved for the Blu-ray drive.

A New Twist on Touch

Right above the keyboard is a 4-inch touchscreen set off by a brushed-aluminum frame. The resistive touchscreen, which has a resolution of 960 x 544 pixels was responsive and didn’t require us to press too hard. The display can fit up to 15 quick-launch icons; we lightly tapped the Calculator icon on the secondary display and the Calculator popped up on the primary display. You can also drag the cursor to the second display and use the touchpad to open applications.

The quick-launch icons can be configured by pressing the Settings button in the lower right corner. A window pops up on the main screen showing all the icons listed in the second display. Unfortunately, you can’t simply drag and drop icons; to add an icon, you first must remove one. The new icon will then appear in the space vacated by the old one. The Menu button can also be used to launch a slideshow in the second display; we merely needed to specify a source folder for images and were then able to flip through family photos while typing this review on the large display.

Interestingly, Windows regards the N7010’s second display as if it were an external monitor. This allowed us to drag other windows, such as a Web browser, onto the second display. We streamed an episode of The Simpsons on Hulu.com, dragged it to the second display, and selected Full Screen. To our delight, the window resized perfectly on the small display, and its touchscreen controls worked flawlessly when stopping and starting the video. Similarly, we were able to drag a video-call window in Skype to the smaller display and see our caller.

We found the second display to be useful, and appreciated not having to go digging through Vista’s menus to launch applications. However, while dragging windows, pictures, and videos to the smaller screen is fun, we didn’t feel it appreciably aided our productivity.

Primary Display and Audio

The main 16-inch (1366 x 768-pixel resolution), 16:9-ratio display is bright and colorful, which made watching Sweeney Todd on Blu-ray quite pleasurable. The screen has just the right amount of glossiness, and vertical and horizontal viewing angles were decent when watching the Johnny Depp musical. We extended the display to a 32-inch Samsung HDTV using the HDMI port to watch the movie in full HD (1920 x 1080); we enjoyed rich colors and could make out minute details in the costumes, and the N7010 played the video smoothly, without any pauses in the video or audio.

While the N7010 doesn’t produce the same quality sound as other 16-inch systems like the Acer Aspire 8920 and HP HDX 16, users will enjoy the system’s crisp audio courtesy of the speaker panel underneath the screen. Usher’s bass-heavy “Love Lockdown” sounded loud and full but didn’t quite have the amount of bass that other desktop replacements offer, since the N7010 lacks a subwoofer.

Fujitsu’s 1.3-megapixel webcam delivered decent images. In a video call over Skype, our caller could make out our new necklace; however, when we switched over to the Apple MacBook, they noted that the image was crisper. Fujitsu also packages the N7010 with ArcSoft WebCam Companion for easy video recording and light editing.


The Fujitsu LifeBook N7010 offers good all-around performance, thanks to a 2.26-GHz Intel Core 2 Duo P8400 processor paired with 4GB of RAM. The machine notched a PCMark Vantage score of 3,652, just above the desktop replacement average, but nearly 500 points lower than the HP HDX 16, another 16-inch, 16:9 multimedia notebook (which costs about $300 more). The N7010 booted the 64-bit version of Windows Vista Home Premium in a molasses-slow 79 seconds, which is 9 seconds slower than other desktop replacements.

The system comes with a 5,400-rpm, 320GB hard drive, which offers plenty of storage space for photos, music, video, and other files. In addition to an accelerometer, the system is protected by Fujitsu’s Shock Sensor utility, which monitors movement of the hard drive and allows users to set the sensitivity of the accelerometer. On the LAPTOP Transfer Test, the drive copied a 4.97GB folder of mixed media in 4 minutes and 11 seconds—a rate of 20.3 MBps, or 1.8 MBps slower than the category average.


The N7010’s ATI Mobility Radeon HD 3470 graphics (with 256MB memory) performed way below average for a desktop replacement. It scored 5,546 in 3DMark03, about 8,500 points below average, and 2,507 in 3DMark06, nearly 2,750 points below average; to be fair, this category also includes gaming powerhouses such as the Alienware Area-51 m17x. That low graphics performance translated to a low F.E.A.R. score of 35 frames per second in autodetect mode (1024 x 768-pixel resolution), and 27 fps at maximum resolution (1366 x 768). By comparison, the HDX 16 notched frame rates of 77 fps and 27 fps, respectively, and the $999 Acer Aspire 6930G scored 74 fps and 59 fps, respectively. Still, the N7010 was able to output a Blu-ray movie via HDMI in full HD, and stream shows from Hulu.com with no visual hiccups.

Battery Life and Wireless

Most desktop replacements with discrete graphics don’t make it past the 3-hour mark, and the N7010 is no exception. It lasted 2 hours and 30 minutes on a charge, which is 17 minutes shorter than the category average. Be sure to keep the AC adapter close by. Fujitsu offers a high-capacity eight-cell lithium ion battery for $149. Wireless throughput from Intel’s 802.11a/b/g/draft-n radio was good at 15 feet from our router (19.9 Mbps) and at 50 feet (18.0 Mbps); both scores are slightly above average.

Software and Warranty

In addition to the ArcSoft WebCam Companion utility, the N7010 comes with Adobe Acrobat Reader, Roxio Creator, CyberLink MakeDisc, CyberLink PowerDirector, CyberLink PowerDVD, and a 60-day trial of Microsoft Office Home and Student 2007. Fujitsu covers the N7010 with a one-year limited warranty and 24/7 tech support.


Consumers have a number of choices when it comes to 16-inch, 16:9 ratio notebooks these days—some as low as $999. While the Fujitsu LifeBook N7010 is $500 more, it provides a unique second 4-inch touch display, solid everyday performance, and impressive Blu-ray playback. The touchscreen is an innovative feature and makes it easy to launch your favorite apps quickly. However, for its $1,500 price tag we wish the N7010’s graphics performance was above that of more affordable 16-inch systems, like the $999 Acer Aspire 6930G and Gateway MC Series. Nevertheless, if a cool second display with touch functionality and Blu-ray are features you’re lusting after, the Fujitsu LifeBook N7010 is a fun, one-of-a-kind multimedia notebook.

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HP TouchSmart tx2z


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HP’s TouchSmart tx2z isn’t the first notebook to offer iPhone-esque multi-touch functionality (that would be the Dell Latitude XT), but it’s the first geared toward consumers—and with a more reasonable price to match. Well, a more reasonable starting price; the tx2z starts at $1,149, but our configuration was a pricey $1,733. Although the tx2z’ touch display is certainly brighter, crisper, and more accurate than its predecessor, the tx2500z, you can’t do a lot with mult-touch gestures on this notebook, and HP’s own MediaSmart interface could be more responsive. Still, the TouchSmart tx2z might appeal to students and early adopters.

Youthful Design

In size and weight, the tx2z is almost identical to the HP tx2500z. Its 12.1 x 8.8 x 1.5-inch body is portable enough to stow in a small bag. The new HP Imprint finish, called Reaction, is a silvery bubble-like pattern that should appeal to hipsters and students. Our unit’s eight-cell battery brought the total weight of the system to 5 pounds and added a bit of heft, especially for a 12-inch notebook. However, HP sells a smaller (and lighter) six-cell battery.

Whereas the tx2500z is silver on the inside, the tx2z is dark blue with a matching keyboard, deck, and palm rest. The plush keys were comfortable to type on but make a clicky noise. The touchpad, dotted with perforated circles, is on the small side. It has a low amount of friction, but the mouse buttons were distractingly narrow (but at least easy to press). The touchpad has a thin strip on the right side that users can tap and slide to scroll through windows.

The area above the keyboard has buttons for increasing, decreasing, and muting the volume. On the right side of the bezel are launch keys for Windows Mobility Center, which includes information on battery life and screen brightness, among other things; changing the orientation of the screen; and the touch-optimized MediaSmart suite (more on that later). Above the display is an embedded webcam and dual mics. The power switch is recessed on the front side of the chassis.


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Find High Definition Videos on Youtube


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Youtube now enables users to view High Definition videos on its site, wherever the option is available. Its easy to convert most videos to HD by clicking on the new “Watch in HD” links beneath videos.

watch hd videos

Since many videos are still not available with the HD option, but you have a high speed broadband internet connection which lets you stream high quality high definition videos, then where can you find a collection of HD videos?

youtube hd videos

Apparently Youtube has a hidden area where such HD videos are all collected together. Check out the Youtube HD videos collection and enjoy. I counted that there are only 100 HD videos out there, of the millions of videos hosted on Youtube.

However, if I embed an HD video below, the HD link option is not available. If Youtube displays a HD icon on these videos, users might prefer to click through to the youtube site to see the HD video instead of the embedded video.

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Apple Logos on Real Apples!


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Have you seen these amazing apples from Japan where Apple half eaten apple logos and Apple ipod logos were naturally engraved on real apples!

real apple logos

The story goes that the owner of a Fuji apple orchard, also a great fan of Apple products (like Mac and Ipods) printed custom stickers of iPods and the Apple logos. He then stuck these stickers on real apples while they were still young and hanging on the trees. When these apples matured after a month, he removed the stickers. Due to the lack of sunlight reaching these apple, those areas lose the color, causing them to keep the stickers original design!

Spotted on Blog!NOBON (In Chinese | English) by WierdAsiaNews.

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Navigon 2000S


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The problem with many budget navigators—especially off-brand models—is that you feel like you’re fighting with them when you enter data. One of the few exceptions is the Navigon 2000S ($199), the lowest-priced model from hot newcomer Navigon that is a pure pleasure to use. Entering data, driving, planning routes: it’s all as simple as can be.

Design and Interface

The 2000S is compact with a 3.5-inch screen, which is typical for a budget model. We weren’t in love with the mount, which requires assembly. The suction cup gave way on us once, so remember to press hard when you place it on your windshield. The navigator itself is basic black and quite slim (0.7 inches). The only external control is the power button along the top.

The Navigon menu, also in basic black, is effortless to use. Main buttons let you enter a destination, choose from saved destinations, plot a route home, or view the map. A long Options button at the bottom of the screen lets you change system settings. Of the two available voices, only one pronounces street names. You can choose to create pedestrian or bicycle routes, or plan a multistop route.

Click to enter a destination and you can either enter an address or search for a POI from the database of 2 million; that’s on the small side, but at least it appeared up to date. Navigon-2000S-keys_shThe screen also offers customizable quick-access buttons for finding a gas station, parking area, restaurant, or other amenity. The tabbed interface makes entering an address simple, and the SmartSpeller feature, which shows only the letters possible for the cities and streets in the search area, speeds up entering location info.

Maps and Navigation

The screen on the 2000S is nice and bright, and the maps are well drawn and easy to follow. We’d like to see more bold colors used on these maps, though, as they can be awfully gray. Despite the small screen size, information is arranged conveniently along the bottom and sides, so that the route info you need is always accessible. You can tap the turn indicator to hear the next turn spoken, or the magnifying glass icon to see a 2D map of the area.

In our testing, we found the 2000S to be especially fast at rerouting. Sometimes the Navigon took two seconds to alter a route and sometimes it was instantaneous. The only problem with this navigator’s routing is something we’ve seen in all Navigons: it refers to intersections as “T-junctions,” even when the intersection is actually a four-way with one road being a one-way street.


One of the best reasons to buy the 2000S is that it comes with Navigon’s helpful Reality View Pro and Lane Assistant Pro features, which make highway driving easier by offering photorealistic views of difficult exchanges and showing you exactly which lane to be in. You won’t find media playback features or expandable memory, but we can live without these features.


Except for its 3.5-inch screen size, the Navigon 2000S is a no-compromise budget model that offers a number of features typically found in higher-end devices. For less than $200, you get excellent maps, handy driving aids, and an intuitive user interface. While its POI database could be larger, the Navigon 2000S is a great choice when you don’t want to spend a lot for quality navigation.

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Olympus rebrands Stylus SW to Stylus TOUGH


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Olympus is rebranding its Stylus SW series of digital compacts as the Stylus TOUGH series to better promote its range of rugged cameras in a more defined category. Now to be known as Stylus TOUGH in the United States and µ TOUGH in the European Union, this new name will be introduced in early January 2009.

Press Release:

Olympus Rebrands Stylus SW Cameras To Stylus Tough Series

Company that Defined and Expanded "Tough" Camera Segment Renames Series Accordingly

Center Valley, Pa., December 2008 – Olympus, the company that introduced shockproof/waterproof digital compact cameras (Stylus 720 SW) in 2006 to mass consumers with active lifestyles, is now redefining the segment it continues to dominate. Starting with its Spring 2009 line-up in January, Olympus’ incredibly rugged cameras built to capture amazing images in aquatic adventures, harsh climates and everyday activities with kids will be rebranded "Stylus Tough."

"Consumers' passion and excitement for our tough cameras has continued to grow throughout the last three years, and they love the freedom of being able to capture beautiful images where other cameras wouldn’t dare to venture," said Mark Huggins, executive director, Brand Marketing, Olympus Imaging America Inc. "Once our innovations moved beyond purely shockproof and waterproof – some Olympus cameras offer freezeproof and crushproof – the SW name became limiting. The Stylus Tough brand will be more descriptive and visual, and will provide us with greater flexibility as we grow this and other camera lines."

The current line-up of Stylus SW cameras offers different levels of durability, providing consumers with options that best meet their needs. Cameras that are shockproof and waterproof are perfect for those who want worryproof, kidproof or lifeproof shooting. Building on these original tough features, other cameras also offer freezeproof and crushproof capabilities for those who seek adventure from the highest slopes to the most tropical depths and want to take their cameras anywhere to capture brilliant images.

The new Stylus Tough brand will enable the company to expand the line-up beyond these current tough benefits, and will be even easier for consumers to quickly understand the cameras’ unique benefits. If it is not waterproof, shockproof, and freezeproof, then by Olympus standards, it is not "Tough." It also allows the company to offer one or more of these unique features in other Olympus camera lines. According to a recent study, many consumers looking for a new digital camera chose durable, weatherproofing as a feature they desire.

The new Stylus TOUGH cameras will be available in January 2009.

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HP Sells Pavilion tx2500z Tablet with $400 Coupon discount for $600 for 2 Days


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The holiday shopping is gradually finishing, however, you can still find good offers from leading laptop makers like HP. Amazingly, HP is offering its budget popular 12.1" Pavilion tx2500z touch-screen Tablet with $400 coupon discount for $600!

On this laptop you are able to get more precious offers contain Free shipping ( saving $49), FREE upgrade to 3GB RAM from 1GB ($100 value), FREE upgrade to 250GB from 160GB Hard Drive, and FREE HP DeskJet Printer ($70 value).

This offer will available only for two days (Coupon expires 12/24) or it will finish after 1,000 redemptions.

The Coupon Code is NB4398.

The real price of this laptop is $1000 that after this $400 coupon discount, you can buy it easily for $600.

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Windows XP: Good bye but not Farewell


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I am a very big fan of Windows XP OS and I know that there are many people who are fans of XP just like me. Unfortunately, Bill Gates did not understand this matter until now. I really cannot understand why Microsoft officials were so much eager to stop giving support to XP. XP is the best version of Windows and it has been going on for many years. I am happy that Bill Gates understood the value of the opinion of the consumers.

BBC wrote:

The cut off date for PC makers to obtain licenses for the software was 31 January 2009.

But now Microsoft has put in place a scheme that will allow the hardware firms to get hold of XP licences until 30 May 2009.

Previously Microsoft extended XP's life until 2010 - provided it was installed on netbooks and low-cost laptops.

Bilkl Gates and other Microsoft officials may say a lot of sweet words about Vista but the reality is that many people are not happy with it. If you look at the tech blog then you will find that many users express their dissatisfaction. I really could not understand that why Microsoft has to pull out XP. What is the problem if stays in the market. It is a very popular OS and is liked by many people around the globe.

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ThinkPad W700ds with Dual Display/ Quad Core CPU Hands On and Video


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So far, we have talked about many affordable budget laptops and notebooks, but all the laptops are not inexpensive. There are always well-off consumers out there who are ready to spend hefty money breaking ground powerhouse laptop workstations. ThinkPad W700ds is one of those sorts of laptops that Lenovo is launching it this January.

The desktop replacement ThinkPad W700ds is a professional laptop appropriate to professional users such as developers, gamers, engineers, photographers and designers. The laptop comes with everything that a professional users can think of : dual screen, quad-core Intel Core 2 processors, up to 8GB DDR3 of RAM, 960GB of SSD / HDD storage, discrete NVIDIA Quadro FX 3700M GPU and even more.

Obviously the laptop is bulky (measuring 16" by 12" by 2.1" thick). It weighs about 11 pounds and starts at hefty price of $3,600.

According to computerworld, “The primary WUXGA 17-in. screen (with 1920 by 1200-pixel resolution) is brighter and more colorful than other notebook PC screens in the market (rating at 400 nits of brightness), while the secondary 10.2-in vertical screen is about 40% the size of the W700ds' primary 17-in. display. It can also be tilted up to 30 degrees like a car's rearview mirror”. The system also provides an integrated WACOM digitizer (an electronic drawing pad or also called a palm-rest digitizer), and color calibration software tool.

If you like this ThinkPad model preferring a single display you can purchase it with the starting price of around $2,500.
Unfortunately this amazing laptop doesn’t provide any HDMI port instead it comes with a DisplayPort and a DVI-D port (you can find it on 15-in MacBook Pro) that is only used for video (no audio).

Good thing is PC Magazine has reviewed this upcoming laptop with secondary display. The reviewed laptop cost $4,240.00 and featured Intel Core 2 Extreme QX9300 processor (2.53GHz), 4GB of RAM, 320GB storage 802.11nWi-Fi, DVD+/-RW DL with Blu-Ray, nVidia Quadro 3700M graphics card and weight of 9lbs.

Here I am only mentioning a rundown of the review:

( Pros):
An Editors' Choice in the workstation category
- Internal Pantone color calibrator.
- Palm-rest digitizer.
-Option for a cool secondary display which can be used to check e-mails, surf the Web, or multitask without interrupting the operations on the primary screen
-Quad-core processor delivered amazing results.
-Dual hard drives.
-Excellent performance scores.
-ISV certified graphics to guarantee successful running of CAD, DCC, and GIS applications on this laptop.
Five USB ports, a FireWire port, a webcam, and a fingerprint reader
-Excellent keyboard
-Outstanding graphics for gamers and professionals.
-WUXGA widescreen with rating of 400 nits of brightness.
Capable of showing 72% of the Adobe RGB color gamut while a typical laptop shows about 45% of it
- Huge storage
- NVIDIA Quadro FX 3700M GPU
DVD+/-RW DL with Blu-Ray

( Cons):
-Butt ugly and bulky
- short battery life of 2 hours and 31 minutes

Bench mark results:

Windows Media Encoder 9 test: ThinkPad W700 scored 35% better than ThinkPad T400

CineBench: The laptop scored double than T400’s score

3DMark 2006 test: W700 laptop scored double than Sony AW190 and

Now, it is the turn of a practical experience. You can see this laptop in the following video. Surly you would like to see the functionality of the secondary display. So, watch it now!

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Sony New Zealand to introduce New VAIO Laptop on Jan 9th 2009; a big surprise?


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Sony has just opened a webpage that counts down to the days it isgoing to show us its big surprise! The only information you can find in this page is that it will be a new VAIO laptop with new technology. Well, it must be a netbook as Sony has not launched any netbook so far and there were some romurs in past months about the Sony’s upcoming netbook.

What do you think? By the way, you can subscribe there to get more information later or maybe you can win one unit of this upcoming VAIO laptop.

Related Content:

-Sony VAIO FW Reviews Round up

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10 Most Popular Freeware of 2008 for Mac OS Users


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The year of 2008 is finishing and it is interesting for everybody to know the most popular and the best of laptops, gadgets, and technology and software tools of 2008. For this aim, while surfing web today, I came across a good article about most popular freeware of 2008 that were downloaded by Mac users.

Here I am just giving the list and links to these software tools. You can read more details about each of them in the original article.

1- Firefox 3

2- Mojo to Download Music

3- OurTunes

4- PwnageTool Jailbreaks


6- Dropbox

7- iTimeMachine

8- Top Draw

9- Songbird


Do you agree with this list? Or do you like to sharewith us your list of most popular freeware of 2008 for Mac users.

Please share with us your opinions in the comment section.

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Dell VP Bob Pearson not Amused by Apple’s Green Initiatives


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First of all, warm welcome to this blog. We will cover about gadgets here and we hope to update it on a regular basis.

When two companies get engaged into any war on green environment issues then most of the people like us but love to enjoy the battle. At this moment, Dell VP Bob Pearson has caused a lot of media buzz by stating that Apple’s green initiative is nothing but hollow words only. He has criticized Apple with three points that:...
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Lenovo IdeaPad S9 Notebook has come to USA


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Lenovo IdeaPad S9 Notebook has hit the U.S. market. The laptop features Intel Atom 1.60 GHz Processor N270, 512 MB DDR2 RAM, 4 GB SSD of storage. The laptop also comes with 8.9-inch WSVGA LED Panel TFT display at 1024 x 600 resolution and 4-in-1 Card Reader. Weighed at 2.43 lbs. (1.1 kg), this notebook is thin and easily portable.

Laptoping reported:

Other features of the IdeaPad S9 include a 0.3-megapixel web camera, stereo speakers, 802.11 b/g Wireless LAN, Bluetooth, Ethernet LAN, two USB ports, an ExpressCard slot, 4-in-1 media card reader, and a VGA output.

Price of Lenovo IdeaPad S9 laptop ranges from $344.99 to $359.46. The laptop is available through online retail shops: Geeks.com and Buy.com. So, check yourself if this is the laptop you are looking for.

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Can Dell Adamo Become the Thinnest Laptop in the World?


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Sometimes, I cannot understand the race for producing the thinnest laptop in the world. Well, it mainly comes from business motivation. Whoever can produce it will be able to earn a decent amount of revenue because we all want very thin and light ultraportable notebooks. Producing thin laptop and at the same time making it robust is a big challenge. Apple could become successful with its Macbook Air. It has got huge acceptance among the users. Now, Dell wants to get a pie of the market share of Apple in this regard.

I could not find any detailed information about this laptop. I even don’t know exactly when it will it the market. I wonder why Dell is still silent about it. Dell Adamo is creating some buzz from now.

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Even the Slow Asus Eee PC 900 with Intel Celeron Can Run Winows 7!


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Windows Vista is famous for its heavy-load to put on even a fast computer, but it seams Microsoft is going to change this awkward image of Vista with a fast easy booting and running of upcoming Windows 7.

The first try of windows 7 on a netbook was running a Windows 7 on a Atom-based Eee PC 1000H and comparing with Vista when running on the same netbook. You can read about it in the following:

-Windows 7 on Eee PC 1000H vs. Vista: “Things are easier in Windows 7”!

But, what about running a windows 7 (Build 6956) on a slower netbook like Eee PC 900 featuring Intel Celeron CPU at 900MHz?

Well, this is really amazing to know that Windows 7 gave quite a good response on this Netbook too! However, if the Aero is off the netbook can handle the Winodwa 7 without any interrupt because the CPU is slow and the graphics is not able to support the 3D quite well.

Multimedia Techblog has tried installing windows 7 on Eee 900 trough 4 GB USB thumbdrive. You can read the details of the whole process of installation in the blog. Also, there is a Video that shows the functionality of Windows 7 on this netbook.

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Fujitsu LifeBook N7010 Laptop with two Display in Video


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Fujitsu LifeBook N7010 is a 16.1-in desktop replacement laptop with two displays. The basic configuration is priced at $1,499.

The multimedia laptop comes with interesting facilities which are bringing real ease for the users such as two displays- a 16.1-in and an Additional 4-inch touch screen displays, a gesture-enabled trackpad, an eSATA port for faster transfer, HDMI output for plugging into a HD TV and Blu-ray drive to play HD movies, all together is a good collection of functional features for multimedia uses.

GottabeMobile could have its hands on this laptop and has shown the different facilities feature and working with the secondary 4-in display in a video.

Also you can read about the first review and highlighted features of LifeBook N7010 that I covered earlier in the following:

Fujitsu LifeBook N7010 First Impression: Two Displays, Blu-Ray and a lot more

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The Last Macworld Expo: What Next?


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On December 16, 2008, Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) announced that the 2009 Mac Expo is going to be its last. In addition, Steve Jobs, CEO, Apple Inc. is not going to read the keynote paper this year. The later has spread speculations about Jobs’ ill health. In 2009, Phil Schiller, Senior Vice President, Apple Inc. will deliver the keynote paper. Till now, no news have been found out about Steve Jobs’ health.

For the last twenty five years, Apple has been helding MacWorld Expo to introduce new products to the consumers. The Expo was attended by all kinds of people ranging from harware enthusiasts to serious techies. Apple believes that it has reached a stage where it does not require to held shows to get people’s attention.

What is not clear is when Apple decided Jobs would skip the keynote. The source indicated that Apple had strung IDG along for weeks, implying that it was business-as-usual concerning Jobs' pending appearance up until the moment that it wasn't. One big question is how this will go down with the Mac faithful who have flocked to this annual event through good times and bad. To be sure, there will be official Apple events in the future, like the Worldwide Developers Conference.

Apple announced that Steve Jobs gave his last keynote address at MacWorld in San Fancisco in January 2008. The news came as a big shock to International Data Group (IDG). IDG World Expo division, a subsidiary of IDG mainly handles the the Macworld event. They were informed only few weeks ago. Over the years, Steve Jobs appearance in the event has become a big event.

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512GB solid state disk from Toshiba in 2009


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Solid state disk is something that many of us one that we cannot afford it because it is expensive. But there is an other side of the story too. It cannot find At the great amount of storage in a solid state disk. So, on the one hand you have to be a lot of money but on the other hand, you cannot find enough storage. So, at this moment it is a total loss for many consumers And especially those people who think of their budget a lot for them really solid state disk is not the ideal option even in laptops. Next year, Toshiba is going to change all that and is going to bring 512GB solid state disk.

CustomPC wrote:

Based on 43nm multi-level NAND cells, Toshiba says that the new drive has a maximum sequential write speed of 200MB/sec, and a maximum sequential read speed of 240MB/sec. The S-ATA 2 drive will be available in standard 2.5in packaging, although Toshiba is also launching other capacities of SSD using the 43nm cells. These include 64GB, 128GB and 256GB SSDs, which will be available in 1.8in drive cases and 1.8in flash modules, as well as the standard 2.5in cases.

You might think that I’m talking about something that will come after many months but the good news for you is that Toshiba is going to display the port that only after a few days in January, 2009 at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES).

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Optoma PK-101 Pico Pocket Projector


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In size, shape, and power, the amazingly tiny Optoma PK-101 Pico Pocket Projector is similar to the 3M Micro Professional Projector MPro110 we reviewed recently. Both are pocket-size devices that actually can fit into a pocket with room to spare—and both cost just south of $400. Simply turn it on without any connections, and the PK-101 beams out a nice white rectangle, meaning it could function well as a small, albeit expensive, flashlight. More important, it does a much better job of linking with one of the most popular electronic devices in existence: the Apple iPod.


The PK-101 makes use of some amazing miniature technology. At 4.1 x 2.0 x 0.6 inches, it is not much bigger than the remote control bundled with many larger projectors, yet it’s able to accommodate not only a DLP imaging engine and an LED lamp but also a rechargeable battery capable of powering the device for 1.5 hours—and even a tiny speaker. And unlike the 3M version, it wisely makes no pretense of being able to handle business presentations. In fact, this model lacks any VGA connector to link it to most laptops.

Rather, this model is meant strictly for after-hours work, when the lights are low and you are more interested in watching videos than pie charts. Just plug this projector’s sole input connection, composite video, to any nearby camcorder, DVD player, or iPod.

To simplify iPod connections, Optoma includes an iPod kit with a dock connector that connected the PK-101 directly to a third-generation iPod nano without the need of Apple’s $59 A/V adapter.


The PK-101 worked surprisingly well as an iPod accessory. In a very dark room, we were able to blow up images to about 8 feet in diagonal with the projector about 12 feet away—although we found the optimal size to be a 2-foot image at 3 feet away, depending on ambient light. In some video podcasts, the image quality and motion were amazingly good considering how low the native resolution is on this projector. A downloaded TV show, however, was remarkably grainy. Sound is passed from the iPod through the adapter cable to a tiny and noticeably tinny speaker hidden somewhere inside the PK-101. Fortunately, the LED lamp runs so cool that there is no fan noise to interfere with the sound.

One nice touch provided by Optoma is a small adapter that can be screwed into the bottom panel of the projector, for affixing it to a small tripod. Once attached, the PK-101 is very easy to position securely on a tabletop.

On our lab tests, the PK-101 performed fairly poorly. It was brighter than the MPro110 but still registered a paltry 10 ANSI lumens, less than 1 percent as bright as most new portable projectors. The contrast ratio was much better, at 240:1, which is as good as, if not better than, some much larger projectors.

Colors were quite good for a projector with a DLP imaging engine. Yellows—a traditional challenge for most DLP projectors—looked surprisingly bright. And although some video and TV images looked quite good, the PK-101 did not do well on a business presentation that had been saved as a series of JPEG images. The images were routinely grainy and showed significant interlace flicker. The tiny focus wheel was difficult to manipulate but did not go out of focus, which the did 3M model did.


The $399 Optoma PK-101 Pico Pocket Projector is an amazing engineering accomplishment, something we might not even have dreamed of ten years ago. But, as was the case with the similar 3M MPro110, this may be a technology in rapid transition.

Future models will probably benefit from more power, more features, and a lower price tag. However, the PK101’s aims as an entertainment device are somewhat more modest than the 3M projector and better able to realize them. For now, if you’re tired of squinting at iPod videos and can dim your viewing environment, this tiny projector may just be worth the splurge.

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The top 10 video games of 2008


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If you are a fan of video games, then you would definitely like to know the games that ruled the gamers’ world in 2008. While surfing in the net today, I came across an article where I got the top ten list of video games for the year 2008. Football Manager 2009 is leading the list, followed by Command and Conquer: Red Alert 3 which progressed few placed to reach at the second place. Third-placed Call of Duty: World at War remains in the third place, but last week’s no. 2 Grand Theft Auto IV slipped two places to 4. There is no change from 5th to 9th places as World of Warcraft: Wrath of Lich King, Fallout 3, Spore, Left 4 Dead and Far Cry 2 take the places accordingly. If you want to know more about the top ten video games of 2008 then read the article at custompc website

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Microsoft LifeCam Show


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Now that most notebooks come with built-in webcams, standalone cameras can be a tough sell, especially if they’re ugly. But the Microsoft LifeCam Show is attractive in more ways than one, offering a compact design, versatile mounting options, and above-average image and audio quality for video chats. Plus, Microsoft has really stepped up its game in the special effects department.

Versatile Design

As a webcam that can stand alone as a desk accessory, the LifeCam Show blends in sleekly. At 2.4 x 1.3 x 0.5 inches, it’s petite, with a flat, glassy front (no protruding lenses here), silver rim, and a chocolate-colored satin back. Microsoft’s signature Windows Live Call button is hidden discreetly on the left side. Circular indentations are on both the front and back side, into which you can insert dome-shaped magnets, allowing for three different attachment options.

The LifeCam Show’s included mounting options are just as important as the webcam itself. A willowy brown desktop stand, in a rich chocolate brown, makes the LifeCam Show look more like a tasteful decoration than just another gadget cluttering your desk. A brown clip can attach the webcam to your notebook lid. And two round magnets can cling to your notebook with adhesive; although we’re hesitant to use adhesive on our own laptops, some may prefer this option to make traveling from room to room with the webcam easier.

Good Image Quality

The LifeCam Show is compatible with a variety of popular IM clients, including Microsoft’s own Windows Live Messenger and Office Communicator, as well as AIM, Skype, and Yahoo Messenger. Although Microsoft says on its product site that the webcam has a 2-megapixel sensor and takes 8-MP photos, the highest resolution at which we could record video was 800 x 600 pixels. (When you set the resolution to 2-MP the LifeCam software automatically disables video recording.)

That said, video at that resolution looked fluid, with barely noticeable latency around the mouth. The LifeCam Show autofocus performed well as we moved around. Moreover, the noise-canceling mics made our voices sound loud and lifelike.

Our 8-MP photos looked bright with punchy colors, though we noticed a good deal of shutter lag. And even though the lens doesn’t protrude, it still delivers a powerful 5X digital zoom.

Improved Special Effects

We’ve been complaining for ages that LifeCam series special effects were cheap. It seems that Microsoft finally heard us: the Show ushers in a revamped effects package that includes distortions, fun filters, and facial accessories (we’re fans of the pink Britney Spears bob). Those two-dimensional screen decorations we previously panned are still there, too.

You can open the special effects pane by hitting a discreet star icon on the main console. Each special effect is cutely represented by a matching face (the one that makes your eyes look buggy, for instance, has cartoonishly large eyes).

As simple as it is, we had some issues with the LifeCam software. Sometimes we had to click multiple times to apply effects. Moreover, the facial accessories took a few seconds to show up on screen, and then a few more to find our face. As we moved around, these accessories flickered, occasionally disappearing if we leaned too far forward.

The Verdict

Microsoft has finally produced a webcam that rivals the Editors’ Choice–winning Logitech QuickCam Pro for Notebooks. For the same price, it offers comparable image quality; the special effects aren’t quite as broad or responsive, but the design is sleeker. If you crave top-notch video quality and design is more important than special effects, the $99.95 LifeCam Show is a hit.

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5.6-in Fujitsu LifeBook U820 Mini Tablet Hands on


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Fujitsu LifeBook U820 went on sale in USA in early November 2008. So, it is very nice to get more idea about its advantages and disadvantages. Fujitsu LifeBook U820 costs around $1000 as expensive as twice the price of a $400 or $500 10-in netbook, while it comes with a very small size 5.6-in screen (half of the size of a 10.2-in screen). So, it makes me curious to know what special features this mini tablet provides that makes it more expensive than a typical netbook. Also, what limitations it has that purchasers should be aware of them.

Notebookreview could have his hands-on this UMPC and had reviewed it in deep details. Here, I am just mentioning a rundown of the review and some of its benchmark results. you can read the whole review here.

The unit was reviewed features: Atom Processor Z530, 1GB 533 MHz SDRAM memory , 120 GB Toshiba 4200 rpm hard drive, 5.6" WXGA Crystal View display with touch screen (glossy, 1280x800), Integrated Webcam and Fingerprint Sensor,
Built-in GPS receiver and integrated Garmin Mobile PC, 10/100 Ethernet (through breakout cable), Atheros XSPAN (802.11a/b/g/draft-n) and Integrated Bluetooth wireless, weight of 1lb 8.3oz, 4-cell battery and Windows Vista Business 32-bit.

- A sturdy rugged-style alloy chassis covered by a plastic shell. The rotating hinges are solid
- Great readable Screen with vibrant colors and good contrast and perfect viewing angles comes with high resolution (1280X800) more than what you find on Netbooks (1280x600)
- The screen is readable indoors and outdoors
- The pointing stick is very practical for normal uses
- Built-in GPS with Garmin MobilePC software
The internal GPS receiver works best NOT using the included external antenna and works well even indoors.
-Over 8 hours of battery life
- Contains a VGA port and a SD-reader and CF-slot

-Clicking on the rough passive touch-screen is some difficult
- One USB port
-The combination of Intel Atom and GMA 500 graphics and the slow hard drive feels sluggish and slow
-Keyboard is very small
- A weak mono speaker,

Benchmark results:

wPrime test: Fujitsu LifeBook U820 scored 123.679 seconds which is a bit better than the score of HP Mini 1000 ( featuring1.6GHz Atom ) (125. 788sec), and Asus N10 laptop with 1.6GHz Atom CPU (126.047 sec) and Lenovo IdeaPad S10 (with 1.60GHz Atom CPU ( 127. 172 sec) and Acer Aspire one with 1.6GHz Atom CPU (125.812sec). However Asus 1000HA with 1.6GHz Atom CPU (117. 577) performed better than this UMPC.

PCMark05 test: all the netbooks mentioned above performed some better than this LifeBook U820 (scoring 1038 PCMarks); (except HP Mini 1000 that the result had not been mentioned in the original article).

3DMark06 test: LifeBook U820 only scored slightly better than Asus N10 laptop but other netbooks scored better results than this UMPC

Well, as you see if you are searching for an affordable small computing device with long battery life up to 8 hours, GPS-ready and different network connectivity options, Fujitsu LifeBook U820 is a good choice for you. But, remember you will have to sacrifice the affordable price, the large screen, good keyboard, and better performance of a 10-in netbook like Asus Eee PC 1000HA or popular inexpensive 8.9-in Acer Aspire One.

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VIA Trinity Platform-Rival of Nvidia’s Ion, Delivers DirectX 10.1 and Blu-ray


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The market of netbook is very young as it was established in late 2007 and now after one year we are going to see the new generation of Netbooks to come out with better forthcoming GPU with DirectX 10.0 (or beyond) support and CPU in 2009 to blur the lines between themselves and the standard full-featured laptops.

We have just heard about the Nividia’s diligence of making a new Ion platform for netbooks or mini laptops to utilize the much better GeForce M9400 graphics along Atom CPU. I am happy that Nvidia is not the only company that is trying for the improvement of netbooks. Although VIA is collaborating Nvidia for new platform, it has just announced its upcoming platform codenamed “VIA Trinity” to bring better 3D support and performance for mini laptops or netbooks.

“VIA Trinity platform couples a power efficient VIA processor like the VIA Nano processor with one of VIA's highly integrated unified digital media chipsets, and adds the power of an onboard S3 Graphics PCI Express discrete GPU … to provide all the Hi-Def performance and latest x86 technology support in three chips that other vendors require in four, yet uses less power, granting system and board builders an immediate head-start in the SFF market.”

“The VIA Nano processor provides scalable, power efficient performance for a truly optimized computing experience with no compromises. This is coupled with one of the VIA system media processors, all-in-one, highly integrated digital media IGP chipsets featuring the 800MHz VIA V4 front side bus.

The S3 Graphics Chrome onboard graphics accelerator supports the latest DirectX 10.1 and OpenGL graphics architectures, HDMI output and playback of the latest Hi-Def content with the Chromotion™ HD 2.0 video engine. Delivering the full add-in card graphics experience in an extremely low-power onboard package, Chrome brings hardware acceleration for all leading video standards including H.264, MPEG-4, VC-1, WMV-HD and AVS for a stunning visual experience, yet remains within the strictest of thermal envelopes.”

Source: Press Release

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Samsung P560-54G


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After plotting its entry into the branded U.S. laptop market for close to two years, Samsung burst onto the scene this past October with seven models in four categories—just in time to see the economy go into full-meltdown mode. So to win the hearts and minds of buyers, the company needs exceptional products at attractive prices. While Samsung hit those marks with its NC10 netbook, its business-focused P560-54G is less successful. It’s not that it’s a bad machine; the problem is, this 15.4-inch mainstream business platform is largely unremarkable, delivering the expected features at the expected price ($1,299) in a package that’s dull even by boring business-PC standards.

Take My Industrial Designer, Please!

At 14.1 x 10.5 x 1.4 inches and 5.8 pounds, the P560 is similar in size to most 15.4-inch notebooks—which is to say it’s fine for lugging to and from your car but far too big for an airplane tray table. The exterior design is nonexistent, consisting of just a rounded matte black shell reminiscent of the off-brand notebooks you see at warehouse clubs. Granted, business notebooks tend to be conservative, but the P560 makes no attempt at a style statement, which is curious considering the attention Samsung paid to aesthetics with its other notebooks, such as the X460-44P. The black-on-black treatment is a little more successful inside, where the smooth keyboard and perforated speaker grille could be read as minimalist-modern. Or just plain ol’ plain.

The keyboard itself is a high-quality, full-size model that’s comfortable and quiet to use. The responsive touchpad could be larger considering the screen size and the copious room on the palm rest, and unlike many business models, Samsung did not include a pointing stick in addition to the pad. Nor are there any multimedia control keys or even dedicated volume controls; the latter, at least, have become commonplace in this class.


The 15.4-inch LCD is, again, an unremarkable choice. Its 1280 x 800-pixel resolution makes for readable text, but a higher-res panel would have made better use of the expansive size, letting you have more windows open and viewable at once. The satin (as opposed to heavy matte) antiglare finish on the LCD is the right choice for a business notebook, cutting down on reflections but still letting the colors come through.

Watching a DVD copy of Pirates of the Caribbean, the screen showed natural color reproduction and remarkably little motion blur. Unfortunately, Samsung’s speakers are abysmal; sound was thin and tinny. It’s worse than most notebooks we’ve tested and particularly poor compared with other machines this size, which tend to have room in the chassis to work some audio finesse. The speakers are maybe good enough for Web audio, but if you were planning on using the P560 as a presentation device, bring external speakers.

Webcam and Ports

Samsung included a 1.3-megapixel webcam above the screen, along with a handy Play Camera utility on the desktop. The applet is easy to use, with icons for Open File, Record, and Snapshot. Right-click in the utility to launch the settings menu, where you can adjust a range of camera presets including brightness, contrast, saturation, sharpness, and resolution (though 352 x 288, 640 x 480, and 1280 x 1024 are your only choices). In our experience, you’ll want to turn the saturation level all the way up; at its default level, colors were muted and skin tones appeared washed out. Image quality was good in typical lighting conditions, but low-light environments proved a challenge, with the camera delivering a barely usable image.

The LightScribe-enabled DVD burner is typical for this class, as are the fingerprint reader and TPM module for added security. The 320GB hard drive is a generous inclusion, even in this day of cheap storage capacity. The P560 employs a noise-reduction system, consisting of sound- and vibration-absorbing material for the hard drive and a new cooling-fan design that keeps noise to a minimum. Indeed, except when the DVD drive is spinning, the P560 is essentially inaudible.

Connectivity features are standard fare for a business notebook, with a couple of surprises. You get four USB ports, a VGA connector, Ethernet and modem jacks, and headphone and mic jacks. One surprise is the serial port on the back edge, and we’re happy to see an HDMI port on a business notebook. Samsung opted for a PC Card slot, but the 3-in-1 card reader (SD, SDHC, Memory Stick) has a more limited format support than most readers nowadays. The company offers a docking solution ($209) for the P560 that includes (among others) five USB, HDMI, DVI, and eSATA connectors.


The P560 is available in two configurations. We tested the $1,299 P560-54G, which comes with a 2.0-GHz Intel Core 2 Duo T5800 processor, 3GB of RAM, discrete Nvidia GeForce 9600M GS graphics with 256MB of VRAM, and a 320GB, 5,400-rpm hard drive. For $200 more, the P560-54P delivers a faster 2.26-GHz P8400 CPU, a 1.66-GHz frontside bus (versus 800 MHz in the lower-cost model), and 512MB of VRAM for the Nvidia GPU.

Productivity performance, as measured by PCMark Vantage, is average among mainstream notebooks, with the P560 delivering a score of 3,008. Its file-transfer performance is also just below average, at 16.3 MBps, and the system boots Windows Vista Business in a reasonable 1 minute and 15 seconds. The P560 is a good multitasker, showing just a 6 percent drop in performance when encoding files in iTunes with an antivirus scan running.

Where the P560 really stands out is in 3D performance. The dedicated Nvidia GPU powered the machine to scores of 14,469 on 3DMark03 (which tests DirectX 9 performance) and 5,057 on 3DMark06 (which tests DirectX 9 3D graphics, CPU, and 3D features); both are around double the mainstream averages. In real-world use, that translates to very usable horsepower for 3D games, albeit at the screen’s less-than-top-end resolution: 75 frames per second on F.E.A.R. at 1024 x 768 and 65 fps at 1280 x 800.

Wireless, Battery Life, and Software

The P560 delivers 802.11a/b/g/n Wi-Fi and the latest Bluetooth 2.0 + EDR support. While the machine’s wireless performance is slightly above average, delivering throughput of 20.5 Mbps at 15 feet from our access point and 17.8 Mbps at 50 feet, there is no embedded wireless broadband option.

Battery life from the included six-cell battery is on the low side; it lasted 2 hours and 51 minutes on the LAPTOP Battery Test (continuous Web surfing over Wi-Fi), around half an hour less than the average. A nine-cell battery ($231) is available as an option should you need closer to 5 hours of runtime.

As is appropriate for a business machine, Samsung keeps preloaded software to a minimum. You get the company’s recovery, maintenance, and update utilities, plus McAfee VirusScan and CyberLink DVD Suite. The machine also comes with a standard one-year limited warranty.


If 3D abilities are important to you, the $1,299 Samsung P560-54G may be worth a look. Of course, you can configure other makers’ business portables with discrete graphics and get similar performance for a similar price, along with a little more style. Small-business users could get a better deal with the Dell Vostro 1510, or the XPS M1530 if they need a little more muscle. As the new kid on the block, Samsung had to give buyers a reason to jump ship; we can’t say this first effort does so.

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