Samsung’s 3D glasses for LED 3D

I am really looking forward to 3D TV in my living room. I have already talked about the Samsung 3D TVs that are coming to Europe and the US soon. I also mentioned that the sets don’t come with 3D glasses; you have to buy those separately.


I have been worried that Samsung and other TV makers will all stick with active technology, not because it is better, but because they can charge us an arm and a leg for the active 3D glasses. It seems with Samsung at least, I was correct. Each pair of active glasses for Samsung TVs will sell for $150. That means a family of four will spend an extra $600 on glasses alone after dropping $3,000 or more on the 3D TV.

I had hoped that there would be lots of passive 3D screens offered too. Then I could just keep the glasses from my local movie theater rather than cramming them into the recycle box after the flick. Another bad thing about the glasses from Samsung is that they aren’t sized for kids and they aren’t rechargeable, they use CR2025 batteries. I really hate Samsung right now.


Nokia N97 —-The Mini Gold Edition

After last year’s release of the Nokia N97 mini Raoul Limited Edition and a white version, it is about time that the N97 got another makeover that is even better looking than the previous ones, entitled simply but firmly “Gold Edition.” No point in carrying all those gold bracelets, neck chains, finger rings, toe rings, etc. if you do not have a mobile phone to match them. Even I know this and I am not in the fashion business… yet.

It’s not that I have something against fashionistas, they are not to blame for the appearance of such designs. The producers, however, are the ones that should simply stop trying to transform the gadgets we love so much into fashion accessories. The mobile phone, and particularly the N97 mini, is a useful tool for web browsing and social networking, not an earring. Although its price might be the same of that of a jewelry piece.

So, the small Wi-Fi, HSPA, GPS, Facebook connecting mobile phone gets a makeover so that it pleases the “artistic” eye of fashion-conscious users. What this means exactly is that the N97 mini Gold Edition has been given an 18 carat gold dress that it wears when its users are connected to the latest gossip and trend-related news via the “ELLE 360Fashion” application. As you can see from the picture, its headsets have been modified this way, as well as their controller, which is now shinier.

The mini smartphone with 5 MP camera and 8 GB of internal memory has the same 360 x 640 resolution, 3.2-inch screen and, of course, helps fashion passionate people get to special events with the maps that Nokia has developed for its Nokia Maps app. The official release date is unknown yet, but the price has been announced as $845 USD.


3G!!!BelAir100N AP Helps Eliminate 3G Bottlenecks

I’m pretty sure that many of you have experienced mobile data transfer outages when visiting some busy tradeshow, for example, simply because the existing infrastructure couldn’t handle the amount of data being transferred at any given moment. And in order to help mobile operators avoid such issues, BelAir Networks has just released at the Mobile World Congress 2010 its BelAir100N access point (AP), a device that allows telcos to quickly deploy targeted, high capacity Wi-Fi coverage in areas of high user concentration such as downtown and shopping districts, arenas and stadiums, college campuses, hotels and resorts and at special events.

With a network of BelAir100N APs, mobile operators can add 20 Gbps of incremental mobile data capacity per square mile, enabling tens of thousands more users in a given area to concurrently enjoy broadband mobility without creating network congestion. Plus, the device has a rugged, environmentally hardened design, which makes it a very good solution for outdoor installation.

The BelAir100N supports both 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz access to address the newest generation of Wi-Fi-enabled devices. Its dual radio design can also be configured for both access and mesh or point-to-point backhaul. It can be deployed in combination with any BelAir Networks indoor or outdoor APs and leverages the same BelAirOS operating system and BelView network management to deliver high performance, scalable wireless networking for mobile operators.

“With dual mode smartphones and other devices increasingly driving mobile network traffic, leveraging the Wi-Fi capabilities of these devices to offload data is a no-brainer, but mobile operators also want to manage the network quality and brand experience of their customers,” said Greg Williams, senior vice president, corporate and business development, BelAir Networks. “The BelAir100N is designed to provide high performance wireless networking and a seamless user experience and it’s fast, easy and cost-effective to deploy – it’s a real win-win for mobile operators and their customers.”


SAPPHIRE HD 5670 comes with the latest tech

SAPPHIRE Technology is now shipping a new family of graphics cards in the highly successful HD 5000 series. The SAPPHIRE HD 5670 is a new low power model aimed at the mainstream market, whist sharing many of the exciting features of the latest high end series.

The SAPPHIRE HD 5670 is based on the latest graphics architecture from the ATI division of AMD, the second generation of GPU to be built in its 40nm process. It supports the advanced graphical features of Microsoft DirectX 11, and delivers spectacular video clarity, speed and visual effects, whilst consuming very low power levels.

SAPPHIRE will offer several variants of this product. All of them have 400 Stream processors and support Microsoft DirectX 11 as well as ATI Stream. As the core technology is low power, no external power connection is required, making this series ideal for system upgrades or mainstream PCs that do not have high end power supplies.

The two top models of the SAPPHIRE HD 5670 series offer a choice of 1GB or 512MB of DDR5 memory, with clock speeds of 775MHz core and 1000MHz (4GHz effective) for the memory, and a specially designed cooler from Arctic Cooling to keep noise levels to a minimum. The output configuration on the bracket is Dual-Link DVI, HDMI and DisplayPort. In addition to a DVI to VGA adapter, an HDMI to DVI adapter is included, allowing two DVI monitors to be supported, and these models will also support three monitors in ATI Eyefinity mode with a suitable DisplayPort monitor or active display adapter. Native CrossFire support allows two or more cards to be used together for additional performance on a suitable CrossFireX compatible mainboard.

Two additional models will again offer a choice of 1GB or 512MB of memory, but will be configured with the popular output configuration of DVI, HDMI and VGA on the bracket, allowing a choice of monitor types without the use of adapters.

The SAPPHIRE HD 5670 series not only boosts performance in current DirectX10.1, DirectX 10 and DirectX 9.0 games and applications, but will support stunning new levels of detail, transparency and lighting effects in newer releases of software using DirectX 11. All of this comes with low active power consumption and Dynamic Power Management delivering super low-power operation in 2D or idle.

This series of cards supports the latest features demanded by Microsoft DirectX 11, including DirectCompute 11 instructions, hardware Tessellation and multi-threaded communications with the system CPU. These combine to provide new capabilities for the interaction between transparent objects, new lighting and accelerated post processing effects as well as physics calculations and accelerated video transcoding. They also support ATI Stream, accelerating supported applications such as video transcoding and rendering tasks by executing instructions on the GPU architecture rather than the system CPU.

Like the previous generation, the SAPPHIRE HD 5000 series has an on board hardware UVD (Unified Video decoder) considerably reducing CPU load and delivering smooth decoding of Blu-ray and HD DVD content for both VC-1 and H.264 codecs, as well as Mpeg files. In the SAPPHIRE HD 5000 series the UVD has been enhanced to be able simultaneously to decode two 1080p HD video streams and to be able to display HD video in high quality with Windows Aero mode enabled. HDMI capability has also been upgraded to HDMI 1.3a with Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD Master Audio support.

The SAPPHIRE HD 5000 series is supported by AMD’s DirectX 11 WHQL certified graphics driver which delivers support for all of the key DirectX 11 level features required for new gaming experiences and acceleration of next generation high performance applications.


Sony Blue-ray players will be capable of 3D 1080P by HDMI 1.3

Surprisingly, Sony has announced that they’re going to be sending full 1080p 3D signals over existing cables. Of course, that’s not the whole story.

Sony revealed recently that their new players are capable of a lot more than we thought. Mainly, they’re able to process a 1080p 3D signal.

There’s been a lot of confusion with the advent of 3D and HDMI 1.4, and the initial word was that HDMI 1.3 just couldn’t handle 3D in 1080p. As Sony pointed out though, that’s not really the case. Their new Blu-ray players can hack a 1080p signal using your existing HDMI cords.

So what’s the deal? Well, there are two real factors here. First off, while Sony’s new player doesn’t bear the HDMI 1.4 branding, it sounds like it will still be HDMI 1.4 compatible. As a Sony rep said, “The players and theater systems support the HDMI 1.4 spec for 3D playback, but may not support all of the qualifications of spec.”

So the players won’t support everything required to get HDMI 1.4 branding, but you’ll still be able to get the 3D benefits of HDMI 1.4 while using an HDMI 1.4 cord. The player doesn’t work with the other features of the new spec though, such as an audio return channel, which means it doesn’t get HDMI 1.4 branding.

The second thing, and perhaps the most important, is that HDMI 1.3 will indeed carry a 3D signal at 1080p. It can’t handle 3D at sixty frames per second though, only thirty. Of course, while watching movies on most Blu-ray players, the output is set to 24fps, which HDMI 1.3 can handle just fine.

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ATI Radeon Top-end HD 5830 on the way

The recent additions to AMD’s HD 5000 graphics card lineup still haven’t brought the series to a close with talk of the entry top-end HD 5830 still on the way.

We first heard about this model over a month ago, with word that it would arrive in early Feb, but AMD appears to have delayed the release by up to several weeks intentionally and won’t give an exact date of launch.

The Cypress LE core which is used in the HD 5850 models is also used for the HD 5830. However, where the 5830 differs is in the way of fewer shaders (1280 instead of 1440), less texture units (60 vs 72), but surprisingly this model apparently runs a higher core clock speed than the HD 5850 at 750MHz vs 725MHz.

The memory configuration will remain the same; 1GB of GDDR5 memory operating at 1000MHz. Physically it will look very similar as well, most probably sticking with the same PCB and cooler design.

Early online store listings reveal the cards pricing to be around the £190 / 216 Euro / $297 mark, but keep in mind that none of the aforementioned information is official as yet.


Intel and Nokia to creat Meego open platform

Intel is creating a open software platform as part of its six month mobile collaboration with Nokia.

The two companies are merging their separate Linux-based Moblin and Maemo software platforms to create a open software platform, called MeeGo, that will run a range of hardware in netbooks, tablets and in-vehicle infotainment systems.

First devices from Nokia and other manufacturers are expected to be launched later this year.

The open source software initiative will be supported by Intel’s acquisition last month of Wind River, which has a range of embedded development tools supporting Linux platforms.

There is no mistaking Intel’s commitment to Linux as confirmed by its acquisition of Wind River last year.

Wind River’s president, Ken Klein sees supporting multiple Linux operating systems as “the price of entry” into the embedded Linux market.

At the time of the Wind River acquisition Intel indicated its ambitions to play a role in the development of future Linux-based mobile platforms.

This deal with Nokia confirms those ambitions as Intel tries to compete with chip rivals Qualcomm and Texas Instruments, along with a range of ARM-based processors from the likes of Freescale and NXP.

Behind the open software collaboration will be the Ovi Store a channel to market for apps and content for all Nokia devices, including MeeGo and Symbian-based.

The Intel AppUpSM Center will be the path to market for Intel-based MeeGo devices from other device manufacturers.


New digital-test console made by 8 billion-transfer/sec PCIe 3.0 test platform

Technical Editor — EDN, 2/2/2010

Agilent Technologies has introduced a test platform that includes a digital-test console, which provides a complete integrated protocol analyzer and exerciser for one- to 16-lane implementations of the PCIe (Peripheral Component Interconnect Express) 3.0 specification, which is currently under development within the PCI-SIG (PCI Special Interest Group). The console offers the industry’s largest capture buffer and fastest download interface, with multiple nonintrusive probing options that employ new ESP (equalization-snoop-probe) technology. The company designed the console to assist with and provide accurate test results during the development of PCIe 3.0 and products that support and incorporate it. The transition to PCIe 3.0 requires test engineers and validation labs to address the new specification’s higher bus speeds and backward-compatibility requirements and to adapt to changes in the bus’s encoding scheme and several new advanced protocol features. The console addresses these enhancements by providing an ESP interface, which reliably captures data at 8 billion transfers/sec; it also incorporates an LTSSM (link-training-sequence-state-machine) exerciser for validating new encoding- and protocol-state-machine designs and a flexible GUI (graphical user interface) to aid in debugging the advanced protocol.

The test platform includes a large collection of tools for testing and validating PCIe 3.0 requirements from the electrical layer to the protocol layer. These tools include the 90000-Series Infiniium oscilloscopes, which integrate de-embedding capabilities as well as CTLE (continuous-time-linear-equalization) software that ensures the electrical compliance of future PCIe 3.0 devices; the 86100C Infiniium DCA-J (digital-communication analyzer/jitter), which provides one-button ease of use and performs precision waveform analysis as well as jitter, TDR (time-domain-reflectometer), and S (scattering)-parameter measurements; and the N4903B J-BERT (jitter/bit-error-ratio tester), a high-performance serial BERT that performs complete jitter-tolerance testing for accurate receiver characterization and compliance testing. The platform also includes the N5990A test-automation software for complete automation of PCIe-compliance testing using the J-BERT, ParBERT (parallel BERT), and other Agilent instruments; and the ADS (Advanced Design System), a software suite that includes a complete set of simulation tools ranging from frequency-, time-, numeric-, and physical-domain simulation to electromagnetic-field simulation for design characterization and optimization. The average system price is $100,000


ASUS’s Gamers overclocked Radeon

Details of an upcoming ASUS Republic of Gamers (ROG) graphics card have emerged, complete with some early photos, and it seems the company have taken an ATI Radeon HD 5870 and overclocked it.  The fettled card cranks the GPU from 850MHz to 900MHz and doubles RAM to 2GB of 4.9Gbps GDDR5 memory.  Meanwhile ASUS are apparently making it straightforward to overclock the ROG card a little more again, with up to 1080MHz possible from the GPU and 5.2Gbps from the memory.

Connectivity is DVI, DisplayPort and HDMI, and the ports share the backplate with a Safe Mode button.  Pressing this reverts the ROG HD 5870 to a stable configuration, just in case your experiments leave everything inoperable.  There are also exposed contacts for multimeter voltage monitoring and a pair of eight-pin PCI Express power connectors.

So that you don’t waste any of your system grunt running an overclocking app in the background, ASUS’ software will save the settings to the ROG card and then shut down.  According to Chinese site Zol the ASUS Republic of Gamers Radeon HD 5870 will be “available immediately”, though there’s no sign of a price tag.

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