Corel updates Video Studio, releases V7

Posted by Kathleen Maher on March 11th 2014 | Permalink
Categories: Software Review,
Tags: corel v7 video studio

Corel has long been a contender on the video front, and it has helped to thin out the ranks with its acquisition of Ulead, Intervideo, Roxio, and Pinnacle. The company’s release in 2012 V6 was a major upgrade. This latest release, V7, bats cleanup, but it also solidifies some

Chromecast TV dongle

Posted by Kathleen Maher on October 8th 2013 | Permalink
Categories: Hardware Review,
Tags: google netflix chrome dongle chromecast youtube

Our friends at Vivante got a Chromecast for us (their GC 1000 graphics core is inside the Marvell DE3005-A1 SoC), and we gave it a go. Chromecast is a $35 HDMI dongle that plugs into a TV or monitor. It’s a good thing we got this when we did;

New Features in Lightroom 5 Beta

Posted by Kathleen Maher on July 15th 2013 | Permalink
Categories: Software Review,
Tags: adobe lightroom cloud

Just before the kick-off of Adobe Max, Adobe released its latest version of Lightroom, its photo management product, as the Lightroom V5 beta. Lightroom is designed for photographers and it is as much a basic editing tool as it is an organization tool. For many people for whom Photoshop might

The HTC One X+: A review

Posted by Kathleen Maher on January 30th 2013 | Permalink
Categories:
Tags: nvidia graphics qualcomm mt. tiburon testing tegra htc one x+

The latest object of serious geek lust is the HTC One X+, the successor to the somewhat adored One. The phones are identical and they look nice. They are a critical bit bigger than most other phones, and especially the iPhone 4s, and OMG they have Beats audio. The latest

The Surface is a start

Posted by Kathleen Maher on December 12th 2012 | Permalink
Categories:
Tags:

Is Microsoft too far behind to catch up? Microsoft’s Surface has finally arrived, and we have finally gotten around to writing a review of the new tablet designed to be an Apple killer. It’s just as well; we’re late, we’re slow learners,

Adobe Edge

Posted by Kathleen Maher on June 9th 2012 | Permalink
Categories:
Tags:

A sign of the times Adobe has opened the door to all its content creation products with its new subscription model. The company says one of the reasons it has done this is so it can introduce cool stuff as it’s ready. They can feed new technology out

Review: of Lightroom 4 builds on a successful legacy - Adobe adds features for consumers

Posted by Kathleen Maher on March 16th 2012 | Permalink
Categories:
Tags:

Photo organizing tools have evolved over the years to provide many more capabilities besides simple organization and editing. They have become workflow tools that many photographers use as their sole processing application. There are plenty of free or low cost tools available that can handle the simple task of managing

Sony’s proto-ultrabook will be a hard act to follow

Posted by Kathleen Maher on March 3rd 2012 | Permalink
Categories:
Tags:

{image_1}Some people just can’t wait to have an Ultrabook. Me, for instance. And if you’re not willing to wait for the crop of competively-priced new machines that are just being dusted off and readied for the store floor, the choice has been between an Apple

Adobe apps — works in progress

Posted by Kathleen Maher on December 11th 2011 | Permalink
Categories:
Tags:

Adobe has come to the market with a raft of new apps for the tablet. They are useful to varying degrees but they all cost $9.99. Now, $9.99 is not a lot of money but it is a little high for an app and Adobe’s new apps vary quite a

Egnyte makes cloud storage a business

Posted by Kathleen Maher on December 11th 2011 | Permalink
Categories: Software Review,
Tags:

Dropbox, Sugar Sync, OpenDrive, Mozy, Egnyte ... there are quite a few options for cloud storage services, but Egnyte hopes to stand out with security and management as well as competitive pricing. The company is a startup founded in 2008. They’ve made a big introduction at CloudBeat 2011 where they showed

Review Amimon WHDI: Remote HDTV from your PC

Posted by Kathleen Maher on July 28th 2011 | Permalink
Categories: Hardware Review,
Tags: graphics gaming review computers

Israeli based Amimon developed WHDI (Wireless High-definition Interface) chipsets. A fabless semiconductor company, Amimom established the WHDI concept for uncompressed wireless HD video for CE video devices. WHDI allows flat-panel televisions and multimedia projectors to wirelessly connect to HDTV video sources and obtain a quality equivalent to that achieved with

The tablet is a blank slate - Review ArtRage for Apple iPad

Posted by Kathleen Maher on July 1st 2011 | Permalink
Categories: Software Review,
Tags: graphics review software ipad art

Steve Jobs is not always right and in fact, he was totally wrong when he dismissed the idea of a stylus for his devices because among all the other things the iPad does well — remote control, movie player, presentation platform, and best friend on a lonely Saturday night — the iPad

Android vs. Android vs. Android

Posted by Kathleen Maher on May 18th 2011 | Permalink
Categories: Hardware Review,
Tags: mobile iphone benchmark g2x smartphone droid

A look at the Motorola Droid 2, LG G2X, Sony Ericsson Experia Play We’re swimming in Android phones right now. We have a (slightly) older Droid 2 that’s actually in use as my working phone, a brand new Sony Ericsson Xperia Play, and an LG G2X. The Droid 2

The systems works; Revue reviewed again

Posted by Kathleen Maher on April 21st 2011 | Permalink
Categories: Hardware Review,
Tags: tv review television google revue

We've been revisiting the Logitech Revue after it's been in the house and operating for several months now. In fact, if we had the time or the organizational skills it would make sense to have second takes on most of the products we review. The first review tends to be

Corel Video Studio Pro Review

Posted by Kathleen Maher on March 25th 2011 | Permalink
Categories: Software Review,
Tags:

Corel has introduced their latest version of VideoStudio and this product displays the considerable effort that has gone into streamlining the interface on the frontside and under the hood, Corel has tuned the software to take advantage of GPUs and one of the major features of VideoStudio is the ability

Adobe Acrobat 10 review

Posted by Kathleen Maher on February 7th 2011 | Permalink
Categories:
Tags: adobe publishing acrobat

With the introduction of Acrobat 10, Adobe has fine tuned its positioning of Acrobat to emphasize collaboration and communication in a company's business operations. The company has also added considerable functionality to aid process and management. Focus is a good thing. The Adobe Acrobat team will concentrate on what it does

Review of the Google TV Revue system from Logitech

Posted by Kathleen Maher on December 8th 2010 | Permalink
Categories: Hardware Review,
Tags:

The true blend that will combine all the content you want from the internet with all the content you want from your TV service is coming, it's almost here, you can almost have it, maybe. Logitech sent us a Google Revue system and I managed to get the thing set

Nvidia GTX 570 Review

Posted by Kathleen Maher on December 8th 2010 | Permalink
Categories: Hardware Review,
Tags:

Latest edition to product line is a winner Nvidia has released the latest in their Fermi series a lower cost Enthusiast class AIB named the GeForce GTX 570. On a performance basis the AIB is very close to the GTX 480 that came out last year and with 1.5 GB can be found

Review: GTS 450 Nvidia novice graphics board

Posted by Kathleen Maher on September 28th 2010 | Permalink
Categories: Hardware Review,
Tags:

Nvidia released their newest AIB this week. The GTS 450 is geared for the LAN gamer and those who are keeping a close watch on their discretionary spending—which is all of us these days isn’t it? The successor to the GTS 250, the GTS 450 is positioned to take on the

An open letter to Steve Jobs

Posted by Kathleen Maher on September 2nd 2010 | Permalink
Categories: Hardware Review,
Tags:

Why I can’t l leave my computer at home. Dear Mr. Jobs, I love my iPad, really, thank you very much. I am a proud member of the current generation of Apple zombies spawned by the iPhoneOS. I have been doing my best to fall in line and help

New benchmarks - Radeon HD 5870 Review

Posted by Kathleen Maher on August 17th 2010 | Permalink
Categories:
Tags: gaming benchmark

Two new games are out, or will be shortly, and they run DirectX, even though they look like re-ports from a console platform. Nonetheless they do have interesting effects and lighting in them, and give a GPU an interesting workout. “Mafia II” Developed by 2K Czech (previously known as Illusion

AMD on AMD with AMD - The platform company shows its stuff

Posted by Kathleen Maher on July 8th 2010 | Permalink
Categories: Hardware Review,
Tags: amd graphics gaming review

After too many years of being criticized for not tooting their own horn enough, the technical marketing folks at AMD sent us a Vision Black machine to put through the paces. I think we may have to toot their horn—this is one impressive machine. As configured, the system was

The Specialist Headphone from Nox Audi

Posted by Kathleen Maher on June 23rd 2010 | Permalink
Categories: Hardware Review,
Tags: gaming games audio sound headphones audiophile

While strolling the aisles of E3, we ran across some compact headsets from Nox Audio. The new design includes an integrated 4 mm omni­directional microphone slickly tucked by the left ear pad. It rolls out when needed and rolls back up discreetly to avoid the geek factor that gamers might

Testing Tessellation on the GeForce 480

Posted by Kathleen Maher on May 28th 2010 | Permalink
Categories:
Tags:

Tessellation represents one of the key benefits of DirectX 11 for gamers. By enabling Tessellation during gameplay the GPU is able to “dynamically subdivide the wireframes of 3D objects.” By subdividing the wireframe the detail of all objects in the game is exponentially increased. Images that once took on a box-like

Nvidia GTX 480 benchmarks

Posted by Kathleen Maher on April 16th 2010 | Permalink
Categories: Hardware Review,
Tags:

Benchmarking is very time consuming and we have great admiration for those websites that get so much of it done right after an AIB is released. This is our second series of tests on the Nvidia GTX 480. Since it’s Nvidia’s flagship product, and has taken so long to

AMD’s new/last IGP motherboard—the 890GX

Posted by Kathleen Maher on March 19th 2010 | Permalink
Categories: Hardware Review,
Tags: aib pmark fps usb3 motherboard

AMD has continued to impress us with their chipsets and the new ASUS M4A89GTD Pro/USB3 is one of their finest. The 890GX represents the last IGP chipset from AMD before the move to Fusion. The basic specs are formidable. It has an AM3 socket for a Phenom

Corel Photo & Video Bundle

Posted by Kathleen Maher on March 19th 2010 | Permalink
Categories: Software Review,
Tags:

True to its heritage, Corel has released a powerful set of tools for photo and video professionals in its Photo and Video Pro bundle. Corel disrupted the drawing and illustration market by adding a broad range of tools in Corel Draw including raster to vector tools and most recently dimensioning

Sony Vaio VPCW2

Posted by Kathleen Maher on March 19th 2010 | Permalink
Categories: Hardware Review,
Tags:

The smaller the computer the better as far as I’m concerned; and the new Sony Vaio VPCW2 line of computers is pretty darned small. It’s an example of the newest netbooks coming out based on the new lineup of Atom processors. This computer weighs 2.9 lbs and it’s 2

Review: ATI Radeon HD 5830 graphics AIB

Posted by Kathleen Maher on March 2nd 2010 | Permalink
Categories: Hardware Review,
Tags: amd gpu graphics ati gaming radeon gpgpu pmark

ATI-AMD continued to roll out products in its Evergreen line this week, adding to the Enthusiast segment with the HD 5830. The HD 5830 fits in the lower end of the Enthusiast segment in between the HD 5850 and the HD 5770 with a $240 price point. The following chart puts the new board in

Pay a little, get a lot—AMD’s HD 5450 and 5470 sub $100 AIBs

Posted by Kathleen Maher on February 16th 2010 | Permalink
Categories: Hardware Review,
Tags:

AMD introduced two additional add-in boards to their expanding product line for the Value segment putting a virtual strangle hold on the <$100 market. Radeon HD 5450 The HD 5450 with a 40nm “Cedar” GPU is a sub $60 card set to take the place of its HD 4350/4550 predecessors. To get to this

Aperture surprises: Apple slips in new release when fans were losing hope

Posted by Kathleen Maher on February 16th 2010 | Permalink
Categories: Software Review,
Tags: apple review adobe images faces lightroom aperture photography photographer geotaggin

Aperture 3 is here and Apple has made it a lot more flexible and friendly. In fact, Apple has reversed the waterfall and pulled the popular Faces and Places feature in iPhoto up to Aperture. Features like photo books, which have existed in both products, have become easier to use in

AMD’s ATI Radeon HD5670

Posted by Kathleen Maher on January 18th 2010 | Permalink
Categories: Hardware Review,
Tags: amd gpu ati radeon gpgpu pmark hd5670

While multi-card Crossfire/ SLi solutions and chasing record breaking performance get the headlines the bottom line is fueled by the $100 and under AIB’s. The Mainstream segment of the market has always been the monetary sweet spot of the GPU industry. What a company loses in profit margins in the

Software Review: Making Muvees

Posted by Kathleen Maher on December 15th 2009 | Permalink
Categories: Software Review,
Tags:

Of all the tools out there that promise to make video making easy and fun, Muvee has been one of the best and one of the easiest. The way Muvee works is to let you select video clips and still pictures, add a soundtrack, and pick a style. The templates

EVGA’s GT 240 - Testing a powerful low-cost AIB

Posted by Kathleen Maher on December 15th 2009 | Permalink
Categories: Hardware Review,
Tags:

We don’t just test super high-end AIBs here at Mt. Tiburon Testing Labs; we look at any AIB that is novel or interesting, or controversial. So we decided to take a look at some midrange AIBs, and in particular Nvidia’s newest offering, the GT 240. EVGA loaned us a

The new Zune review – HD at work

Posted by Kathleen Maher on November 19th 2009 | Permalink
Categories: Hardware Review,
Tags:

Microsoft's latest assault on the portable media market is the Zune HD. It is a lovely little piece of hardware that gives Microsoft a play against some strong. In fact, it reminds me of my beloved Samsung Yepp YP-P2. Samsung has upgraded that line with a new P3 and of

Corel Digital Studio 2010

Posted by Kathleen Maher on October 28th 2009 | Permalink
Categories: Software Review,
Tags: video media corel photoshop ilife studio editing elements

We believe that there are about 16 million people working with digital media all over the world—and around 35% of them are in the United States. The vast majority of those people are not professionals, they are people who are taking pictures, editing them, and creating videos and picture books, because

Photoshop.com Mobile for iPhone

Posted by Kathleen Maher on October 15th 2009 | Permalink
Categories:
Tags: apple facebook iphone adobe photoshop flickr photos online sharing social media

Adobe has released a new photo program for the iPhone and it’s designed to complement the company’s online strategy introduced with Photoshop.com. Photoshop.com Mobile for iPhone lets users quickly edit images including crop, rotate, and flip, and they can adjust exposure, saturation, tint and add effects

The Insight drive—simple and sweet

Posted by Kathleen Maher on September 22nd 2009 | Permalink
Categories: Hardware Review,
Tags: apple disk storage hd verbatim backup nero time machine

Verbatim has been building its storage business with products that are easy to use and give customers a little something extra. Their latest product, the InSight drive, adds a small, 32x128, always on LCD display that includes the drive’s name and the amount of storage left on the drive.

Seeing is believing - Putting photo editing products through their paces

Posted by Kathleen Maher on August 6th 2009 | Permalink
Categories: Software Review,
Tags: apple microsoft google avi mov wmv roxio quicktime

Roxio Photoshow is easy and fun. There’s something nice about having just a few options and getting something done quickly. Luckily, the templates, styles, and music, are pleasant and not too childish or silly as is so often the case in similar programs.Remember this: nothing is easy on

A daily driver that looks like a hotrod

Posted by Kathleen Maher on July 7th 2009 | Permalink
Categories: Hardware Review,
Tags: hp vista hdx

FIGURE 1: Right side view. (Source: Hewlett Packard) FIGURE 2: Left side view--moving the data. (Source: Hewlett Packard) FIGURE 3: Looks like the DV6Z has a bigger gas tank. (Source: Jon Peddie Research) FIGURE 4: The DV6Z is faster too. (Source: Jon Peddie Research) Computers and cars can be judged using almost

Lenovo vs. HP Z800

Posted by Kathleen Maher on June 25th 2009 | Permalink
Categories: Hardware Review,
Tags: nvidia lenovo linux thinkstation

Lenovo S20 ThinkStation workstation. (Source: Jon Peddie Research)The Lenovo S20 ThinkStation we tested had a W5580 Xeon 3.20GHz processors, 3 GB of 1.3 GHz DDR3 ECC RAM, a 7,200 RPM 500 GB HDD, and an Nvidia Quadro FX4800 AIB with 4 GB of GDDR3 RAM. The S20 and the HP Z800 both have a

The HP Z800

Posted by Kathleen Maher on June 25th 2009 | Permalink
Categories: Hardware Review,
Tags: workstation hp

ERRATUM: The Z800 does not support hot swap disks. This capability requires a server OS. We are unable to support this on our client OS architecture. When we wrote about the Parallels Workstation Extreme software (Workstation graphics difficulties fixed, p.13, Volume 9, Number 9, April 27, 2009) we were anxious to see it in

Acer Aspire Revo

Posted by Kathleen Maher on May 14th 2009 | Permalink
Categories: Hardware Review,
Tags: acer windows desktop reviews thumbs up

The Aspire is a slick looking little computer, really little, measuring only 180mm x 180mm x 30mm (7.1in x 7.1in x 1.2in) about the size of a wide book. Watching a blu-ray movie on the Acer Playing Stalker on the Acer Figure 1: Performance comparison of three PCs (Source: Jon Peddie

What can you get for a hundred bucks these days? - ATI introduces the Radeon 4770

Posted by Kathleen Maher on April 28th 2009 | Permalink
Categories: Hardware Review,
Tags:

A damn powerful graphics AIB—ATI introduces the Radeon 4770 Resistance is futile – you will buy a new AIB We test a lot of things here at Mt. Tiburon Testing labs, mostly stuff that has a pixel associated with it, and sometimes things that just amuse or interest us. Last year,

What you can do with 55nm and a gig

Posted by Kathleen Maher on April 2nd 2009 | Permalink
Categories: Hardware Review,
Tags:

The HD 4890 is a dual-slot solution with two DVI-connectors FIGURE 1: The HD 4890 compared to its competitors.ATI announced two new top-of-the line single GPU AIBs this week: the HD 4890 and the HD 4890 OC. Both AIBs are based on the RV790 GPU. The new GPU is a revamped "shrink" version of

The Nanovision Mimo UM-710 - USB powered external monitor

Posted by Kathleen Maher on March 3rd 2009 | Permalink
Categories: Hardware Review,
Tags:

No points for neatness here, but the ability to fold the desk up and hide all the business going on in this desk is important and the Nanovision Mimo 710 provides a little more screen real estate at almost no real cost in space. (Source: Jon Peddie Research)According to the

Nvidia’s GeForce GTS 250

Posted by Kathleen Maher on March 3rd 2009 | Permalink
Categories: Hardware Review,
Tags:

Nvidia’s new old GeForce GTZ250.(Source: Jon Peddie Research) Figure 2: GTS 250 benchmark scores.(Source: Jon Peddie Research)Nvidia’s “new” AIB isn’t new at all; it’s the branding and marketing effort that is getting the true overhaul. It’s not the fastest card in the world, but

AMD Introduces the Phenom II

Posted by Kathleen Maher on February 18th 2009 | Permalink
Categories: Hardware Review,
Tags:

Figure 1: Benchmark results for the AMD and Intel processors.(Source: Jon Peddie Research) Figure 2: FPS results for the AMD and Intel processors.(Source: Jon Peddie Research) At this point, it is almost impossible for AMD to take on Intel from a technology perspective. By all accounts, the i7 processors by

Canon PowerShot XS10IS; Learning to live within limitations

Posted by Kathleen Maher on January 9th 2009 | Permalink
Categories: Hardware Review,
Tags:

Musician David Lindley at the Fillmore in San Francisco—this shot was taken from the audience about mid-way back in the hall and zoomed in. This is a pretty amazing shot given everything going against it—low light, zoom, high ISO, etc. etc., and it has been sharpened.(Source: Jon

The HP MiniNote 1000 XP for the road

Posted by Kathleen Maher on January 9th 2009 | Permalink
Categories: Hardware Review,
Tags:

The HP Mini 1000 XP starts at $359.99 for the 8.9-inch model. Options include SSD or HDD storage upgrades, Bluetooth, external storage with slot, HP Mini Mobile Drive up to 8 GB, HD integrated audio.(Source: Hewlett-Packard) A few companies have embraced the netbook, or mini notebook—some perhaps against their better judgment.

The Canon EOS Digital Rebel XS/1000D Companion; by Ben Long; published by O’Reilly

Posted by Kathleen Maher on January 9th 2009 | Permalink
Categories: Book Review,
Tags:

The Canon Digital Rebel is the most popular digital SLR camera on the market. In fact, it’s fair to say that Canon has created the entry-level dSLR market—Nikon and its fans may disagree, but Canon has built the field, taken the ball, and run with it. Ben Long’

HP dv2945se: show, go, or both?

Posted by Kathleen Maher on October 27th 2008 | Permalink
Categories:
Tags:

One would hazard a guess that the most likely causes of early laptop retirement, regardless of who uses the machine, are the same—death by gravity (dropping) or death by blunt object (smacking it against something). This review was undertaken due to the latter cause of death. An overzealous traveler

Adobe’s CS4 features major changes for photographers

Posted by Kathleen Maher on September 29th 2008 | Permalink
Categories:
Tags:

Adobe has been readying the market for its new CS4 lineup of software products for months now and anticipation is high. This is a performance release as well as a feature release, although we saw a few features that are going to need a little more work. This fast review

ATI takes the flag

Posted by Kathleen Maher on August 18th 2008 | Permalink
Categories:
Tags:

By Alex Gorvoi, Robert Dow, and Jon Peddie Sapphire’s HD4870x2(Source: Jon Peddie Research) FIGURE 1: Comparison of three new AIBs.(Source: Jon Peddie Research) FIGURE 2: Power consumption of three new AIBs.(Source: Jon Peddie Research) FIGURE 3: P4 values for the new AIBs.(Source: Jon Peddie Research) FIGURE 4:

ATI and Nvidia chips

Posted by Kathleen Maher on July 28th 2008 | Permalink
Categories:
Tags:

Alex Gorvoi, Robert Dow, Jon Peddie, and Scooter Now that the dust and hysteria have settled, we thought this was a good time take a look at the two new competing architectures from the leading GPU suppliers. Actually it’s taken us this long to collect all the information

Adobe blends Flash with Acrobat in Acrobat Pro

Posted by Kathleen Maher on July 28th 2008 | Permalink
Categories:
Tags:

Adobe’s CS3 brought new interoperability between the company’s product lines, especially by extending support for Acrobat throughout the content-creation tools, making PDF a common format for markups. With Acrobat 9.0 Adobe has increased the integration of Flash in Acrobat. It’s safe to say that this

Samsung takes on Apple’s iPod Touch – the P2 works its way to functionality

Posted by Kathleen Maher on June 30th 2008 | Permalink
Categories:
Tags:

Samsung YP-P2JAB P2, 4 GB media player The P2 has several interface options for its touch screen. The screen, as you can see, is very reflective but one I figured out the brightness controls all was well. Right out of the box the Samsung P2 is a thrill—it

Pinnacle Video Transfer

Posted by Kathleen Maher on June 30th 2008 | Permalink
Categories:
Tags:

The Pinnacle Video Capture and its little friend iPod. In this case the device is recording as you can see by the red lights and it’s recording to “better” mode because the two blue lights are lit up. It’s a very elegant system. Pinnacle

Corel 4 - a big box of tools

Posted by Kathleen Maher on June 2nd 2008 | Permalink
Categories:
Tags:

Figure 1 Corel has added several useful features to its package of tools for graphic artists including tables, as shown in this example. The basic tasks required to create good-looking pieces including brochures, newsletters, business cards, ads, etc. are all here and easy to use. Note the object manager on the

AMD’s ATI Radeon HD 3870 on Vantage

Posted by Kathleen Maher on May 5th 2008 | Permalink
Categories:
Tags:

Figure 1: AMD Radeon HD3870X2 driver tests on Vantage. (Source: Jon Peddie Research) AMD released a 3DMark Vantage Hotfix (Catalyst 8.4.71.1 for those of you scoring at home—not quite Tinker to Evers to Chance but you get the idea. The new driver release is designed to deliver performance enhancements

Pinnacle Video Transfer – no computer needed

Posted by Kathleen Maher on April 21st 2008 | Permalink
Categories:
Tags:

We watched some movies and TV this week at MTTL, on the big screen and the tiny screen. We remember the old days, not that long ago, when testing video software was truly a pain, a pain to get the drivers to install and the programs to run, and when

Photoshop for free?

Posted by Kathleen Maher on April 7th 2008 | Permalink
Categories:
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Photoshop Express is Adobe’s free online application that links to popular online sites like Flickr, and Facebook. Here, I used the Sketch feature to make my friends look mysterious and pensive. They usually aren’t. Adobe has made the latest version of its Photoshop software available absolutely

Graphics chips, boards, and systems

Posted by Kathleen Maher on March 24th 2008 | Permalink
Categories:
Tags:

What an amazing couple of weeks this has been, the biggest rush of new, exciting, and interesting graphics parts since we can’t remember when. We got to examine two new IGP motherboards, two new dual GPU boards, and a two GB memory boards. Here’s what was

Kindle

Posted by Kathleen Maher on February 11th 2008 | Permalink
Categories:
Tags:

Star Trek crew member accessing data on his PADD. (Courtesy CBS Studios) In December, in one of the best-executed PR programs since the iPhone, Amazon announced and then released the Kindle. It was the Ebook only better: a larger display, and always on-line for almost instant down loading of books,

Graphics boards and killer computers

Posted by Kathleen Maher on February 11th 2008 | Permalink
Categories:
Tags:

FIGURE 1: 3DMark06 tests of three AIBs on an AMD Spider platform. (Courtesy CBS Studios) FIGURE 2: Relative performance gain over a single HD 3870 on a Spider platform. (Source: Jon Peddie Research) TABLE 1: Analysis of the data and benchmarks per dollar. It has taken us almost three weeks to do all the

HP’s latest tablet is good to go – and it’s not bad as a couch companion either.

Posted by Kathleen Maher on December 17th 2007 | Permalink
Categories:
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HP has designed a new tablet computer for business users—the Compaq 2710p and, best of all, they sent it to JPR to try out. We've been really curious about going to a tablet since we spend a lot of time listening to people and taking note. Also, we

Fastest twitch mouse in the world

Posted by Kathleen Maher on November 19th 2007 | Permalink
Categories:
Tags:

At Siggraph, we discovered a 3D mouse from Sandio Technology and have been playing with it for the last couple of months. There are three joy-sticks built into the mouse, one on either side (where your thumb and ring finger hold the mouse), and one on top in front of

Application Interface Boards

Posted by Kathleen Maher on November 19th 2007 | Permalink
Categories:
Tags:

This was a busy week for the elves at Mt. Tiburon Testing labs (MTTL), not that it’s every slow around here. Stuff piles up almost faster than we can experiment with it, but as we’ve said many times before, this is so much fun it&rsquo

Verbatim forms partnerships that work

Posted by Kathleen Maher on November 5th 2007 | Permalink
Categories:
Tags:

It's no secret that memory prices have completely crashed through the floor and we now have gigs of memory available on tiny hard drives as well as flash and even mobile phones. A quick web check reveals a tiny 12 GB Verbatim drive for $107.99 and if you're willing to pack something

RESOURCES FOR DIGITAL PHOTOGRAPHERS

Posted by Kathleen Maher on October 8th 2007 | Permalink
Categories:
Tags:

As enthusiasm for digital photography has grown, so has the lineup of tools available for photo editing and management and many of them are free. In essence, photography tools fall into three categories with a wide gulf in the middle. At the top is Photoshop and its plug ins used

Alien Skin offers instant paint plug-in

Posted by Kathleen Maher on July 16th 2007 | Permalink
Categories:
Tags:

PRODUCEABLE ART There’s no such thing as easy art but that doesn’t mean I don’t keep trying. Snap Art, a plug-in program from Alien Skin, seems to promise users a shot at becomming high art with a few push buttons. In the end, you

Photography reviews

Posted by Kathleen Maher on July 16th 2007 | Permalink
Categories:
Tags:

Introduction Camera technology has reached a major inflection point. Or perhaps it’s more accurate to say cameras are looking for an inflection point. The camera body designs, lenses and sensors have all settled down into a comfortable arms race. Customers can have all the megapixels they want even

Pinnacle PCTV HD Pro

Posted by Kathleen Maher on July 16th 2007 | Permalink
Categories:
Tags:

Did we ever tell you that we love TV? We do, we really do and always have, and it just keeps getting better and better—and more accessible for everyone everywhere—TV to the max! And loving TV as much as we do you can imagine we’re

Matrox’s TripleHeadToGo – Digital edition

Posted by Kathleen Maher on July 2nd 2007 | Permalink
Categories:
Tags:

Those cunning Montrealites have extended their external frame buffer manager into the digital domain and now have a DVI version of it. Shown in the picture is the PC side of the unit, and it also has a VGA input connector since most laptops don’t offer a DVI

Confessions of a digital media junkie

Posted by Kathleen Maher on June 4th 2007 | Permalink
Categories:
Tags:

If that Amazon bill ever gets into the wild in our household I am toast. Ditto that Paypal history. When it comes to buying media players I just can’t help myself. As readers of this column know, I am in serious love with the Creative ZenW media player.

Cyberlink updates its video lineup

Posted by Kathleen Maher on June 4th 2007 | Permalink
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Cyberlink has just introduced its latest version of PowerDirector and Media Deluxe Pro. Cyberlink is a wildly crea-tive company and that adjective is chosen carefully. The company draws from a deep well of creative talent in Taiwan who are associated with the University, thanks to the company chairman Jau Huang

Dynadock: The almost

Posted by Kathleen Maher on June 4th 2007 | Permalink
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It works well and exposes the idiosyncrasies of USB peripherals Figure 1. Setting up the Dynadock. (Photo: JPR) This week we’re testing a nifty little 2001 A Space Odyssey–looking monolithic device from Toshiba called Dynadock. The concept is amazingly clever: simply plug it into a USB 2.0 socket on

Graphics boards and chips

Posted by Kathleen Maher on May 21st 2007 | Permalink
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Testing the AMD HD2900XT AMD and Nvidia try to excite—no sale In the last week of April AMD held a little party first in Tunisia and later in the week in Sunnyvale, because those AMD folks really like to party and stack up the mileage points. To

AMD likes four

Posted by Kathleen Maher on February 26th 2007 | Permalink
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A couple of months ago we reviewed AMD’s 4x4, possibly the most powerful machine that one can still call a PC. Now AMD has brought out the RS690 chipset, and among its many features the one that caught my eye (no pun intended) is the ability to drive

Sandio’s Game O 3D mouse

Posted by Kathleen Maher on January 8th 2007 | Permalink
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The Sandio Game O 3D gaming mouse is a well-designed device that incorporates three mini-joysticks for either six degrees of freedom in 3D applications, or whatever the user custom-programs them to do. Other features of the mouse include a removable palm rest base and two additional programmable buttons, which when

NEC omnibus display

Posted by Kathleen Maher on January 8th 2007 | Permalink
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NEC 37-inch LCD monitor, 3735WXM. (Source: NEC) NEC invented the multisync monitor in 1985—22 years ago. The company was king of the hill for computer monitors for a long, long time, but slowly lost market share to aggressive Taiwanese monitor companies like LLLL and in 2000 merged with long-time rival Mitsu-bishi.

Photoshop reloaded – make that Adobe reloaded

Posted by Kathleen Maher on December 4th 2006 | Permalink
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Got work to do? Do not go near Adobe Labs or you’ll get sucked right in. If you don’t find big fun playing with Soundbooth, Adobe’s new sound editor for non-sound editors, you’ll lose hours organizing your photos via Lightroom or picking

Pure Foto Magic, a mini USB TV tuner, and how (not) to download movies

Posted by Kathleen Maher on November 6th 2006 | Permalink
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I know, some of you think the “F” in PFM stands for something else, and it does, but in this case it stands for both—read on … This is a sad story with a happy ending. My dear aunt Joy died last week, in her

Roxio’s Creator 9

Posted by Kathleen Maher on November 6th 2006 | Permalink
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$79.99 In this day and age of low-cost consumer video products, it can be pretty hard to make a buck. Roxio met the challenge by combining its formidable disk-creation software with video- and photo-editing and charging a premium for the suite compared to similar products. The ace in the hole for

Creative media player: The Vision:W

Posted by Kathleen Maher on November 6th 2006 | Permalink
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$299 (30-GByte version) Figure 1. The wide-screen appeal of the Vision:W is obvious. The high-resolution screen can easily handle movies. Now, if only it were easier to get TV shows and movies for non-iPod devices. (Source: Creative)   It’s always Christmas at the Mt. Tiburon Testing Labs, at least

ATI’s new AIBs

Posted by Kathleen Maher on October 31st 2006 | Permalink
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TI introduced two new AIBs last week with the x1950 Pro and X1600. The X1950 Pro is targeted at the performance segment and can be categorized as a totally new product for ATI despite the fact the RV570 is a very close relative to the R580. The RV570 is manufactured

MTTL melts ATI’s Radeon X1950XTX

Posted by Kathleen Maher on August 28th 2006 | Permalink
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Figure 1. ATI’s X1950XTX and X1950CF. (Source: JPR) True to their word, given at Siggraph, ATI promised to send samples of the new AIBs to us, and they showed up last week—a X1950XTX, and a X1950 CF. To us that means they are in

Jon tries to make a movie for his PSP

Posted by Kathleen Maher on June 5th 2006 | Permalink
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Here’s the way it should work. You pick a source file, say a DVD, or maybe a WMV or AVI. You jam in your memory stick, tell the program where it is, or if it’s a really smart program, what it is—you let the

2-4-$1 – Nvidia’s Dual-GPU AIB

Posted by Kathleen Maher on June 5th 2006 | Permalink
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Well, it’s not quite two for the price of one, but it’s close. Long anticipated, since Nvidia showed its Quad solution in the big Dell tent at CES, the company has come out with a consumer version of the dual-GPU AIB. And by installing two of

Windows Vista tests

Posted by Kathleen Maher on June 5th 2006 | Permalink
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We had lots of stuff to play with this past three-day weekend—too much, as usual, but we gave it our best effort. We went from the very large to the very small. Having just gotten back from WinHec with a fresh Vista Beta build, and having a new

Devices that work

Posted by Kathleen Maher on May 22nd 2006 | Permalink
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KATHLEEN HAS BEEN CORNERNING THE MARKET IN RIO MP3 PLAYERS. A trip to eBay reveals that these players are still available and many of them are selling for less than $50. Rio was a pioneer in the industry, and the company got a lot of things right. What’s really

Never buy another keyboard

Posted by Kathleen Maher on April 11th 2006 | Permalink
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Now that’s the last thing our friends at Logitech want to hear, but you get your hands, er, your fingers on a G15 keyboard, you’ll never want anything else, and you probably won’t need anything else. This is the keyboard that does it all.

Big boards, big fun – looking at Nvidia’s 7900GTXs

Posted by Kathleen Maher on April 11th 2006 | Permalink
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Figure 1. Benchmark results for ATI and Nvidia. (Source: JPR) You may recall we recently tested dual Nvidia GeForce7800GTX 512 AIBs in SLI mode against dual ATI Radeon X1900XTX AIBs in a Crossfire mode. The results are on our website. No sooner had we finished than Nvidia announced the GeForce 7900

We do Crossfire – SLI tests

Posted by Kathleen Maher on February 28th 2006 | Permalink
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We got a new Asus A8R32 MVP Deluxe socket 939 motherboard with the new ATI Crossfire chipset (that we're not permitted to talk about now, but will do so in the next issue) and built up a new computer. AMD sent us a new dual-core 2.604-GHz 64 FX-60 processor and we

What a chassis – the Lian Li memorial chassis, that is

Posted by Kathleen Maher on February 28th 2006 | Permalink
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Figure 1. Lian Li's memorial chassis. (Source: Lian Li) We recently stumbled across the Lian Li 20th anniversary memorial chassis and thought it was exactly how a Crossfire or SLI chassis should look, like a giant exhaust fan. Further investigation, however, revealed it also to be very cleverly designed, and strikingly

Apple introduces Aperture; Adobe counters with Lightroom

Posted by Kathleen Maher on January 30th 2006 | Permalink
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Apple has been saving most of its surprises for the consumer end of its business, but just before the holidays the company rolled out Aperture as a gift for its dedicated professional customer base. The new photo-management and image-processing tool is a gorgeous complement to Apple's Cinema displays—which are

If you like four how about a 2 x 2?

Posted by Kathleen Maher on January 16th 2006 | Permalink
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AMD just announced its long-awaited dual-core Athlon 64 FX-60. Long-awaited not because it is late but because there is such a pent-up demand for it in the enthusiast community. You can expect to see this part fly off the shelves. The demand for high performance in PC games and digital media

Asus EAX1800XT breaks speed limits

Posted by Kathleen Maher on December 5th 2005 | Permalink
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If the reviews for the Asus EAX1800XT TOP are as good as the initial reviews of the ÒKing KongÓ movie then Asus will be getting gaming converts. Asus, is making the connection by bundling the official game of ÒKing KongÓ with the new Asus offering. Figure 1. Asus EAX1800XT

No wonder about ATI using R520 for TV

Posted by Kathleen Maher on November 21st 2005 | Permalink
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As the 1800 XT is finally hitting the market ATI will introduce its latest card in the All-In-Wonder series, the Radeon All-In-Wonder (AIW) X1800 XL. In the past the All-In-Wonder additions to the ATI family usually didn't appear until months after the launch of the flagship products. However, ATI wanted to

Living with the Xbox 360

Posted by Kathleen Maher on November 21st 2005 | Permalink
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The Xbox 360 is clearly this year's Tickle-Me Elmo. Stores started reporting shortages shortly after Thanksgiving. If you want an Xbox 360 and you just can't find one you might try going to Japan because we hear the machines are sitting on the shelves. According to a survey conducted by Japanese publishers