Archive | November, 2010

Deal of the Day – $55 shipped – Western Digital 1.5 TB Caviar Green WD15EARS

This is a really hot deal for one of the most reliable green hard drives available on the market – Amazon has the 1.5TB Western Digital WD15EARS Caviar Green 64MB cache SATA 3.0 Internal Hard Drive (OEM) for $54.99. Shipping is free and Amazon has no taxes in most of the states. On sale from $122.99.

Good time to load your home media server :) Excellent 4 out of 5 stars reviews.

PS3 Wireless Keypad Review

I am not much of a chatter, but I hate to input text in my various electronic devices via a remote control. The navigation is awkward in many cases and just slow, especially if you do it frequently. With PS3 getting one of the best Netflix clients around, I started to use it more frequently as my main Netflix streaming device (PS3 Netflix review here) and soon I realized I really need something to type more efficiently when I search for a certain movie. There are several different devices that serve the same purpose but in my experience many 3rd party attachments are badly designed and don’t fit the original product very well. While more expensive, I decided to buy the PS3 Wireless Keypad made by Sony and hope for a pleasant experience. I now have the keypad for more than a month already so I feel I can offer a good look at its qualities and shortcomings.

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Logitech Harmony Adapter for PS3 Review

Sometimes, those little things just make life a little bit better and Logitech Harmony Adapter for PS3 is one of them (albeit quite expensive). As you know, for some yet unexplained reason, Sony decided to manufacture a Bluetooth PS3 remote control instead of an infrared one (and of course they conveniently build the PS3 itself without a IR sensor). This left a certain category of users in the dust, the ones that like to have everything at a touch of a button (and one remote), myself included.

At the beginning, when PS3 wasn’t yet the multimedia workhorse it is now, I was content to control it via the original remote or just using one of the controllers. However, with the Read More…

Comcast outage resolved

You might know (or if you are a Comcast customer experienced first hand) that last night for about 2 and a half hours Comcast customers in New England and Washington D.C. experienced an outage of their internet services. Luckily the problem is solved now and it turned out to be not an outage “per se” but a DNS issue, easily solved if you knew how to set a new DNS server address in your router. One possibility to consider if something like this will ever happen to you is OpenDNS that provides four IP addresses that you can use and it might even improve your existing internet service offering faster resolution. (What a DNS service does is to offer a translation between a friendly web address, for example cnn.com and its real IP address – 157.166.224.25).

The following are the 4 addresses that you can use, from Open DNS.

  • 208.67.222.222 (resolver1.opendns.com)
  • 208.67.220.220 (resolver2.opendns.com)
  • 208.67.222.220
  • 208.67.220.222

TV on your XBOX 360? Yes, it is coming!

While it is certainly not the first Microsoft attempt to a marriage with TV networks, it might not fail as spectacularly as their previous attempts to enter the market, and that because nowadays TV watchers are far more open to the Internet TV and second, because XBOX 360 is already in millions of living rooms already, and used daily.

According to a Reuters article, Microsoft is currently in talks with major TV networks to bring subscription TV channels to their XBOX platform, something that Google can’t do with its Google TV device being blocked by most of the networks.

While the deal won’t probably come earlier than 12 months, it is reported that the discussions were productive. There are several ways the service could arrive, either with Microsoft becoming a virtual cable operator, authenticate the existing cable subscribers so they can get the content via XBOX 360 or having “a la carte” packages paid for individually.

Such channels might benefit of a degree of interactivity no other set top box currently has or hope to achieve any time soon, especially with the wildly popular Kinect offering a gesture enhanced user interface. Such channels might command (and get) a premium price if properly executed.

Sony Qriocity brings all you can listen music to PSP

Just in on the Playstation blog, a really good news for the PSP owners that can put PSP on the map again as a multi-media device – The Sony cloud Qriocity will be put to good use with the addition of Music Unlimited – a “new, cloud based digital music service from Sony that will give music lovers access to millions of songs stored and synchronized through the cloud.”

The new feature will require a new PSP firmware version 6.35 which means you’ll have to update your jailbroken PSP or just wait until the new feature finds its way in the custom firmwares that are also updated regularly. Whichever way you choose to do it however, you’ll notice a new entry in the Xross Media bar under Music. The Media Go app will also be updated with a brand new UI and photo editing features.

There is no mention about when exactly the service will go live, nor any mention about the price but we can’t imagine will take too long. In the meantime, push Sony to add the same goodies to PS3 as well.

Cyber Monday 2010 Amazon Deals List

After the Black Friday, we have Cyber Monday, an opportunity both for us to get some last minute deals and for the merchants to squeeze our wallets for just a bit more. But we like it, so we can’t complain too much. Here is what I found on Amazon, in terms of gadgets (I got myself the Roku player and the Sanyo camcorder, expect reviews soon, as always).

Check Amazon’s full Cyber Monday 2010 collection of deals in electronics.

1. Sanyo VPC-GH4 Full HD 1080 Camcorder with 10X Dual Range Zoom ($129 on sale, reduced from $199)

Tech Specifications:

  • Full HD 1080, 60i Video (1920 x 1080)
  • 10 Megapixel Digital Photos
  • 10x Dual Range Zoom Video
  • Embedded Software for Sharing Videos/Photos
  • 5x Optical Zoom Photo

2. Roku XD Streaming Player 1080p ($67.99 on sale, reduced from $79.99) Read More…

Black Friday Deal – $62 shipped – Seagate ST32000542AS Barracuda LP Hard Drive – 2TB, 5900 RPM, 32MB, SATA-3G

The best hard drive deal to date for 2010 Black Friday is at Tiger Direct – Seagate ST32000542AS Barracuda LP Hard Drive – 2TB for only $59.99 plus $7 for shipping and minus $5 via Google Checkout nets it at just $62 shipped (if you are in one of the states with no taxes for Tiger Direct).

You can only buy one, but if you have multiple Google accounts you can add the same credit card to each of them (I got three hard drives this way). Total for California, $61.98 each shipped. By far the best deal in storage for this Black Friday.

The hard drive is 2TB at 5900 RPM, a green drive (also 32MB cache) and is one of the best for media servers but not as good as a boot drive since it tends to enter in sleep if not used for a while.

Amazon Black Friday deal – Kindle 2 for only $89

For those that just want a cheap eReader and don’t care too much to have the latest generation, Amazon dug deep in their warehouses and found some leftover Kindle 2nd generation (with free 3G and all), for the incredible price of $89. This model has exactly the same eInk screen as the current Nook but also 3G internet access.

This will obviously be a door buster deal and  limited while the supplies last. The deal will be live at 9AM Pacific Time this Friday and featured under Amazon Lightning Deals category. Don’t forget to bookmark and check at 9:00AM sharp!

Facebook, Blockbuster, Wireless USB Keyboard support, AccuWeather and more coming to WD TV Live and Live Plus

It is always a good thing when your gadget just gets smarter without costing you a thing. Via a new software update (version 1.04.10), Western Digital’s flagship streamers, WD TV Live and WD TV Live Plus (the one with Netflix) got Facebook (where you can update your status, get News and videos, upload photos, etc), Deezer (on demand music service), Flingo (free Internet TV from leading studios, TV networks, etc), Accuweather.com (you know what that is).

Both WD TV Live (simple and Plus) versions also get USB wireless keyboard support which will prove really useful when you update your Facebook status or search for a video clip on YouTube.

All in all, a good review that certainly improves the media streamer value. WD TV Live Plus is currently available at Amazon with no taxes and free shipping in most of the states for $99. Read here our full review.

For who is interested in tinkering with their box, there is a unofficial custom firmware at B-RAD that provides additional functionality.
Check after the break for WD’s Press Release
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