Dec 31 2006

Blog - Happy New Year!!

Happy New Year everyone! I hope 2006 was a great year for you all and may 2007 be even better. Look for a lot of great things to come from MissingRemote.com this next year :).

new_years_eve

 

Dec 31 2006

News - Millions Complain About New Holiday HDTV Sets

Moving from the family's 27" CRT TV to a 55" HDTV can be described in a few steps.

1. WOW! That TV looks bigger then in the store! I can't wait to set it up.

2. WOW! I just plugged in my standard cable it all looks so big.

3. mmm The quality kind of stinks... I thought it was supposed to be better

4. My TV seems to be shrinking...

This has happened to over 19 million people since upgrading to an HDTV!

From the article:

 

About 19.5 million consumers who recently purchased digital television sets are complaining about the quality. Many who bought the new and improved televisions were stunned to take their new purchase home only to realize they're not that different from regular conventional sets.

A spokesman for Consumer Electronics said on Sunday that many even believe the quality image is worse.

 

 

Dec 31 2006

News - Crestron News Releases

Remote Shoppe has several Crestron press releases today.

Crestron introduces a two way iPod interface: Link

Crestron introduces the CEN-IDOC, the first 2-way iPod interface, truly replicating the iPod experience on any Crestron touchpanel. Integrating the iPod into home audio systems is one of the hottest trends in the industry. Until now, consumers were unable to manage their music libraries, view play lists, or select music by artist, CD or song when connected to a home audio distribution system. Using 2-way communication, the CEN-IDOC reproduces the iPod experience on Crestron touchpanels. Crestron provides a graphical interface that duplicates the iPod display, and, leveraging the larger screen of the touchpanel, offers an enhanced view. The expanded view displays multiple sortable fields such as artist name, song title and CD title on a single screen. Crestron's CEN-IDOC provides full iPod functionality allowing users to do everything that they can do from their iPod and more from a whole house audio system via a Crestron touchpanel.

Crestron introduces new WI-FI touchpanel: Link

Crestron introduces its new Isys i/O™ TPMC-8X WiFi touchpanel, featuring an embedded Windows XP Operating System that provides secure onboard PC functionality including 802.11a/b/g wireless capabilities. TPMC-8X features high-speed performance in a sleek magnesium alloy casing, providing the thinnest, lightest most durable mobile touchpanel available. TPMC-8X offers a brilliant 8.4" SVGA screen, displaying 3D graphics and streaming video; and features built-in Bluetooth® technology, Skype™ Voice-over-IP, AuthenTec biometric scanner, stereo speaker system and microphone; and supports Yahoo! Widgets and Dyanamic Navigation.

Crestron Introduces Adagio Home Entertainment Solutions: Link

Crestron launched Adagio, an innovative new line of home entertainment solutions in 2006. Adagio racked up 7 awards this year including "Product of the Year," "Best Audio Distribution System," and Sound & Vision's "Editor's Choice Award." Adagio is the first Crestron solution offering out of the box functionality without any programming or configuration required. Adagio is a true plug-and-play solution that consists of several products including whole house audio distribution, home entertainment system, digital audio server and audio room expander. Individual Adagio systems may be packaged with Crestron keypads or LCD panels for expanded control. Adagio has a 2-Series engine built-in to accommodate Crestron control systems to make Adagio part of a complete integrated automation solution, including iPod® interfaces on touchpanels, infiNET™ wireless dimmers, and HVAC control.

 

Dec 30 2006

News - AMD Live! to support Blu-ray and HD DVD in 3Q 2007

AMD Live!is set to support both next generation DVD formats by Q3 2007. I am not sure exactly what that means because you can take most HTPCs and a player and have it work. Perhaps they are indicating that they will have better hardware acceleration by that time. Regardless of the announcement, we already know that we will have next gen support much earlier then that.

From the article:

While their common goal is to define multimedia functions on PC platforms, their share of the multimedia PC market is not high, the sources said, pointing out that major PC vendors do not give too much stress on Viiv or AMD Live! when promoting their systems.

 

Dec 29 2006

News - Logitech diNovo Edge Keyboard Review

I remember when this device was first shown, it was so slick & sleek, I wanted one, but just couldn't justify spending $200 on a keyboard (with some mouse functions, sure). Well, maybe this review will convince you to splurge on a late Christmas present.

Pricing aside I can honestly say there is little to complain about with this keyboard on the hardware end.  It works flawlessly without lag and incorporates several outstanding features that are invaluable when used in a media center environment.  The Touchdisc and Mouse function buttons are great for working on the web even for forum lurking.  The media controls are simple and effective for basic entertainment control and for general typing the key response is nice and makes very little noise.   All in all I would say if you can afford it I would highly recommend this keyboard. 

dinovoedge_16

 

Read the rest here

Dec 29 2006

News - Synology - DS-106E NAS Server Review

Storage is something we all need more of, kinda like money :-P Well, NASes have gained a lot of popularity in the last year, and Synology (who?) have come out with a NAS that allows you to install whatever size HD you please. Not bad to drop a 750gb in there & let it stream to your heart's content. But at $300, is it really worth it? Maybe we should do a guide for how to build your own NAS out of older, slower PC parts for free, eh??!??! Innocent

In my opinion, Synology has taken about 90% of the hassle out of tasks that previously were difficult or cumbersome to setup. The ability to host a website with a few simple clicks, to setup a FTP server, or to even share files with friends is brought to you in one simple, yet elegant package... and that package is the DS-106e from Synology. Throughout every test that I performed, the features of the DS-106e  performed outstandingly.

 

synologyhd

 

Read the rest here

Dec 29 2006

News - DIY Hardware News

Welcome to today's edition of DIY Hardware News. If you see something I have missed, feel free to post it in the comments or go ahead and submit it to news <at> missingremote.com.

bit-tech: 2006 Awards

Futurelooks: ECS KA3 MVP Extreme

Digital Trends: MP3 Players under 300 dollars

Motherboards.org: XFX GF 8800 GTX

Pro Clockers: Scythe Any Samurai CPU Cooler

PC Stats: abit Fatal1ty An9 32X nForce 590 SLI

Overclock3D: Asus P5B-E S775

PC World: Top Software Trends For 2007

Bjorn 3D: Mushkin 2GB XP2-8500

Dec 29 2006

News - TV Compass LCD Remote

I gotta agree with Engadget that we'll probably see this at CES. That's what I love about this time of year, you get to hear about all these cool toys soon to come. And looks like it's gonna provide a healthy dish of remotes for everyone's liking.

...which takes a few Windows Mobile interface cues, mixes in some WiFi and a LCD, and manages to do little more than its smart remote peers, just with a little more ugly. The remote, which just recently passed through the FCC, does all that usual channel-changing and home theater control stuff, plus adds in WiFi for programming guides off the internets.

 

tv-compass-smart-remote

 

Read the rest here

Dec 29 2006

News - The HDTV Dilemma:Pay for TiVo's Recorder

Wall Street Journal goes into a little analysis regarding whether one should pay for TiVo or use the cable company's DVR boxes. Kinda common sense really, TiVo better be better for $600 box & $13/mo compared to the Cable Co's $10/mo fee. And it is, but is it *that* much better to balance out the cost? Hopefully it at least pushes the Cable Co's to improve their product.

The worst problem is that the Comcast box flubs the basic functions of a DVR. It is maddeningly slow at responding to commands sent by the remote control to pause, play, fast-forward and rewind. You press pause and nothing happens. So you press it again. You try to return to normal speed after fast-forwarding through commercials and the unit takes so long to obey your command that you badly overshoot the resumption of the program. 

Read the rest here

Dec 29 2006

News - Zgiga TV Turns You Living Room into Modern Art

This is a really neat gadget, assuming of course you have the budget for it. Price isn't mentioned in the article nor on the product's page, but I'd imagine it'd be up there.

If your 42-inch plasma isn't getting enough oohs and ahhs from your neighbors, maybe this will. The Zgiga TV 2 is a hyrbid TV/shelf unit that combines the latter with a multi-format Blu-ray/HD DVD player called the Zgiga Cube (in black).

 

zgiga_tv_2

 

Read the rest here

Dec 29 2006

News - Belkin's Cable-Free USB Hub

I'm really not sure the demand for this type of device, but I'm not surprised to hear that it has speed issues over wireless. Plus, are you really going to trust your backup USB hard drive to backup all your files without a hitch through this? How patient are you going to be just to have this wireless? Oh, yeah, and it's friggin $200!!!!

File transfer using the Cable-Free USB Hub was significantly slower than copying files with the memory card reader connected directly to the computer. The last line of the chart shows the Cable-Free throughput as a percentage of the directly connected throughput. Even taking the best results, the Cable-Free hub performed only at 1/5 the speed of the wired transfers. My test files for the SD card consisted of 1GB of video files I shot on my Canon SD550. Transferring these files from the card to my computer took 1 minute 49 seconds. The same files took 10:56 using the Cable-Free Hub.

 

cablefreeusb

 

Read the rest here

Dec 29 2006

News - Medion MD RIM 1000 UMPC in the wild

The potential with UMPC's is there, it's just a question can they become affordable. But how cool would it be to integrate this bad boy into your home configuration--stream tv, control everything--since it is basically the size of one of those expensive remotes. :-)

The Medion MD RIM 1000 UMPC sure beats the Samsung Q1 and Q1b, and perhaps even the Sony UX180p. Why? Because it’s more usable thanks to the integrated slide out keyboard and touch pad. Other features include a 6.5-inch touch screen, 802.11b/g WiFi, Bluetooth 2.0, integrated GPS, DVB-T tuner and web cam.

Read the rest here

Dec 29 2006

News - Keian intros KDVD850HDMI upscaling DVD player with DivX support

Not a bad alternative especially at only $91 assuming it comes out in the US, this player will upconvert your DVDs to 1080i, and your DiVx files as well. I doubt it'll look as good as through a properly configured HTPC, but you can't beat the price & potential. But again, at such a low price, you have to wonder how long it'll last.

Aside from kicking plain ole DVDs up to 1080i via HDMI, playing back DivX files, and touting the admittedly strange dual microphone inputs for that karaoke flair, this unit also touts the ability to render picture-based slideshows and play back MP3 / WMA from USB thumb drives or flash memory cards (SD, MMC, MS, xD).

 

12.27.06-dvd850hdmi

 

Read the rest here

 

Dec 29 2006

News - DTS Licenses DTS-HD Master Audio Technology to World-Leading IC Companies

AGOURA HILLS, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--DTS, Inc. (NASDAQ:DTSI) today announced that 10 major integrated circuit (IC) manufacturers have licensed DTS-HD Master Audio and / or DTS-HD High Resolution Audio, DTS high definition multi-channel audio technologies for the next generation optical disc formats, Blu-ray Disc and HD DVD. The manufacturers will incorporate DTS-HD Master Audio and DTS-HD High Resolution Audio into chips they are currently designing for their customers in the consumer electronics industry that are producing HD DVD and Blu-ray Disc players, A/V receivers and Home Theater In-A-Box components, as well as the PC and automobile markets.

In addition to DTS-HD technology, the IC manufacturers have also licensed DTS-HD LBR (Low Bit Rate) for Secondary / Sub Audio and / or the DTS encoder for transcoder usage within the next generation HD DVD and Blu-ray Disc players. The new IC licensees are...

Read the rest of the press release here.

Dec 29 2006

News - Run Slingbox on Linux

With MythTV & the likes being so popular as a Linux Media Center, it's nice to see the Slingbox community come up with a resolution for those users to be able to use their Linux OS with their Slingbox. Not the most seamless install in the world, but hey, it gets it working!

This is a tutorial on how to get SlingPlayer to work with Wine, not how to install and use Linux. I'm assuming that the users of this tutorial will already have a good understanding of how Linux (the Ubuntu distribution in particular) works, and has all the necessary hardware (such as network, wireless, and graphics cards) installed and working. With this in mind, I'm providing detailed installation information on how I got SlingPlayer to work with Ubuntu. This might not work 100% for everyone.

Read the rest here

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