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This Is Not a Test: Calibrate Your HDTV?

50°
341w ago - BUYING an HDTV usually starts with research. You then may make a decision based on what it looks like in the store.

Take the set home and the picture may look slightly different. Some colors are brighter than others, and the contrast between dark and light colors is heightened.

Now you need to calibrate the TV. Photographers and graphic artists have been doing color calibrations for years on their monitors in order to ensure that colors on screen accurately match what will appear in print or on a Web site. But now, with more consumers owning high-definition TVs – where every pixel pops off the screen – calibration becomes more important than with the old cathode-ray tube TV.

The easiest way to do it is to ask the electronics store to adjust it for you. It may also be one of the most expensive options. Geek Squad, the service arm of Best Buy, charges about $300 for the in-home service. But other people may find satisfactory results either with software included on some DVDs or by buying a special disc that takes the viewer through calibration steps.

The manufacturers tweak red, green and blue settings a bit to make the colors pop. They intensify blue, causing red and green to overcompensate in the image. Some people may like that look. But it creates an HDTV that is not only...
 

Five reasons why Vista beats Mac OS X

550°
341w ago - The conventional wisdom, that Mac's OS X is superior to Windows Vista, is flat-out wrong. In fact, despite much belief to the contrary, Vista is a superior operating system. Here are five reasons why.

Reason #1: Vista runs more software

Mac OS X is a very pretty operating system, but beauty runs only skin deep. An operating system by itself is a poor thing -- it's the applications that run on top of it that matter. And here's where Mac OS X falls short. It can't run much common software, including enterprise applications and games.

Virtualization software like Parallels Desktop for Mac won't solve the problem. Parallels can't run even the most basic Vista games such as FreeCell, Hearts, Pinball, Solitaire and Minesweeper, because it doesn't support DirectX 9. And virtualization software creates big problems for enterprises with regard to volume licensing, technical support, creating standard enterprisewide images and so on. So it's no good for running enterprise applications either. Vista beats OS X here, hands down.

Reason #2: Vista is safer

As I've written before, Vista is a more secure operating system than Mac OS X. Mac OS X was easier to crack in a recent hacking contest. And security researcher Dino Dai Zovi had this to say about Vista versus Mac OS X when...
 

Sony lacks manufacturing capacity to meet Blu-ray demand?

50°
341w ago - Despite Blu-ray's utterly devastating victory earlier this year, Sony may be in a spot of trouble. Seems the company has a bit of a problem manufacturing the discs (I swear I've heard that before), and since it's the the biggest producer of The Blu (that's how cool kids say Blu-ray), it could be the biggest obstacle to the format's success.

Not that that really matters, since in five years we'll have a new format. Demand for The Blu is expected to JUMP this year to 48 million units; Sony only has the capacity to manufacture 38 million, and that's after an upgrade to its facilities.

And while I'm thoroughly post-disc (technically), I did have my eye on the PS3, more or less because I could use it as a Blu-ray player.

But then I heard the system doesn't output DTS-HD, so what's the point? :P
 

Thin Intel Netbook to vie with MacBook Air?

50°
342w ago - During a keynote speech at the Intel Developer Forum in Shanghai, an Intel executive brandished a Netbook that looked Air-thin. Will inexpensive Linux Netbooks be a poor man's MacBook Air?

Most of the photos to date of upcoming Netbooks are ho-hum designs, engineered to be inexpensive yet practical for users such as young schoolchildren. But some upcoming designs look intriguing--and extremely thin. (See close-up photo here--PC Watch.)

"This Netbook is running Linux...As you see, this doesn't mean an ugly design. It's a really nice-looking, stylish design," said Dadi Perlmutter, executive vice president and general manager of Intel's Mobility Group, when waving a very-thin-looking Netbook (photo) at the audience during his keynote at IDF.

Consider the typical specifications for a Netbook (best exemplified by the tiny Eee PC) and it's not a stretch to design an ultraportable, ultrathin Netbook:

Power-sipping Atom processor: This chip will draw as little as 0.65 watt, much less than the Air's Core 2 Duo chip which has a TDP (Thermal Design Power, or thermal envelope) of 20 watts. This means less heat dissipation.

Solid-state drive: Netbooks (Eee PC, Intel Classmate) will typically use SSDs, not hard-disk drives--another power- and space-saving feature. (There will...
 

NVIDIA Slowing Down Graphics Upgrades?

50°
342w ago - If you've recently found yourself thinking that you might just bite the bullet and buy a new high-end graphics card, news last week that new models from NVIDIA could be coming as soon as July may make you rethink that decision. The day before the 9800GTX was officially unveiled, rumors started to leak that NVIDIA was already preparing a new line-up of high-end cards under the 9900 naming scheme, and that the 9800 series would be discontinued in July.

Word is that we will see a similar setup to what we currently have now; a 9900GTX sporting a single core and a 9900GX2 that will carry with it two GPUs like the current 9800GX2. It's clear that NVIDIA wants to continue to be on top of AMD when it comes to speed, but these constant refreshes with minor improvements are coming to the point where it's just plain ridiculous.

AMD on the other hand seem to be hard at work creating what should be a true next generation card with the new 4000 series due out around a similar time. With specifications on the card already floating about, there isn't a doubt in our mind that NVIDIA already have something up their sleeve to beat AMD come launch day, and the chances are that it will just beat out the AMD offering.

The problem with NVIDIA at the moment is that all they're doing is placing doubt in...
 
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