LCD

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Fujifilm has unveiled its FinePix S1 point-and-shoot camera at the CES 2014. The superzoom snapper features a 50x (24-1,200mm) f/2.8-5.6 lens, and is resistant to both dust and water. The lens’s maximum aperture starts at f/2.8 at the wide-angle and dips to f/5.6 at the full 1200mm equivalent – that puts it slightly ahead of the maximum from similar superzoom models such as the Canon PowerShot SX50 HS and Panasonic Lumix FZ72 models. With a maximum autofocus speed of just 0.14 sec at the widest angle setting, and a continuous shooting speed up to 10 frames per second, this is one speedy snapper.

fujiFilm S1

The camera also sports a 16-megapixel sensor, WiFi image sharing, a 10fps burst shooting mode, 1080p video recording, a 920,000-pixel electronic viewfinder, and a tilting 3-inch LCD display.

Fujifilm unveiled four other point-and-shoot cameras at CES, with the S9200 and WiFi-ready S9400W omitting the weather-resistant design and 920,000-pixel viewfinder to come at a more economical price.

The AA battery-powered S8600 serves as an entry-level model, offering a 36x (25-900mm) lens and 720p video recording, while the XP70 is a extra-durable device that is fully waterproof.

All five cameras will be released in March, with prices starting at $230 (£140) for the S8600, running up to $500 (£305) for the FinePix S1.

I have the 2012 Samsung ES8000 LCD TV and as I wanted the 2013 experience I purchased the Samsung Evolution Kit to upgrade it, and here is how I got on.

CDW---Samsung-Evolution-Kit-at-CES-2[7]

By simply attaching the Evolution Kit device into the back of a Samsung Smart TV, consumers can enjoy the latest features that the 2013 Smart TVs have to offer without the expense of buying a 2013 TV.

CDW---Samsung-Evolution-Kit-at-CES-2[4]

With hardware enhancements, such as CPU, memory and GPU up to the level of the latest Smart TV, users can enjoy faster speeds for browsing the Internet and multitask by using apps while watching TV.

In addition, Samsung’s Smart Interaction features such as voice control and motion control will be enhanced. Once the Evolution Kit is attached to the slot, 2012 Smart Hub is transformed to 2013 version.

CDW---Samsung-Evolution-Kit-at-CES-2[10]

The Evolution Kit fits neatly onto the back of the TV and connects via a single cable.

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There is a new remote control too:

CDW Samsung Evolution Kit - 5

The whole process took around 2 hours, which included updating the 2012 firmware before starting the installation and configuration process (watch the video to see what I mean).

CDW Samsung Evolution Kit - 44

Here is the unboxing, connection and configuration video (to keep it short I have edited out all the times where you have to wait for things to download or update):

The Samsung Evolution Kit is available now for £249, but look around as there are deals to be had! I got mine for £219.

Have you got the Samsung Evolution Kit? If so let us know what you think of it by leaving a comment below.

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Acer has announced the Liquid E2 smartphone. The Android Jelly Bean handset packs a 1.2GHz quad-core processor and 1GB of RAM, as well as a 4.5-inch LCD display.

acer-liquid-e2

Acer Liquid E2 smartphone in Pearl White

acer-liquid-e2-smartphone

Acer Liquid E2 Duo smartphone in Carbon Black

 

Other features include dual-SIM support, an 8-megapixel camera, 42 Mbps connectivity, and stereo audio via dual speakers and DTS Sound.

The Acer Liquid E2 is the third smartphone the Swiss manufacturer has launched this year, following the Liquid E1 and the Z2.

The handset will be available in Rock Black and Classic White Belgium, Netherlands, Ukraine, France, followed by Spain, UK, Italy, Germany and Russia from mid-May with a recommended retail price of €229 (£195).

A specific price and release date for the UK market is yet to be confirmed.

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soladapt Logo

If you are looking at the new OS from Microsoft Windows 8, We all know that it is really designed for touch but what if you don’t have a Touch Screen monitor for your PC. What should you do, got out and buy a new Touch Screen for Windows 8, I have the answer for you from the good people from Soladapt, has designed an overlay for you monitor to turn it into a Touch Screen monitor, that works on 15 inches to 159 inches.

soladapt

 

The Soladapt will work on Windows machines and also Mac desktops and iMacs. With prices starting from £109.99 you can see you can save a lot of money if you use an overlay than buying a new touch screen monitor. I was lucky to have a quick demonstration at The Gadget Show Live at NEC in Birmingham if you watch the video below you can see a quick demo of the product.

Size 

General Size 15 inch to 159 inch 

Fit in with Panel display device  

Performance 

Touch Mode Single-point touch, Multi-touch, drag, draw-line, rotate, zoom in/out 

Resolution(Interpolation) 4096*4096 

Linearity Error <1.5mm 

Response Speed <15ms 

Mechanical 

Input Method Finger or gloved hand (rubber ,cloth or leather) 

Touch Times Unlimited 

Touch Activation Force No minimum touch activation force is required 

Minimum Touch Object 2.5 mm X 2.5 mm 

Vandal-proof No break by 1-pound steel ball dropping from 130 cm high 

Surface Durability Surface durability is that of glass, Mohs\’ hardness rating of 7 

Optical 

Glass: Without glass, 4mm glare, AG (anti-glare), or AR (anti-reflective) glass 

optional 

Light Transmission 92% 

Gloss Antiglare surface (curved or flat): 95  ±  15 gloss units or 65  ±  15 gloss 

units  

Environmental 

Temperature Operating Range: -20°C ~ 70°C;   

Storage Range: -40°C ~ 85°C  

Relative Humidity Operating Range: 0%~90% RH (no dew falls) 

Storage Range: 0% to 95% RH (no dew falls) 

Altitude Up to 3,000m  

Ambient Light 

Direct sunlight 90°to ±30° to the display surface Touch detection 

operational 

Direct sunlight all angles to display surface Free of false touch reports 

Electrical 

Operation Voltage Typical +DC 5V, +4.75V to +5.25V 

Power Supply 

Size under 52”(include 52”)USB or PS/2 Interface, power ripple 

max.200mV rms 

Size above 52”(52” not included): external AC-DC power adaptor 

Interface Full Duplex USB 2.0 (Full Speed) Plug and play compatible  

Serial RS-232. Baud Rate: 9600, 8 Data Bits, 1 Stop Bit, No Parity  

Current Typical 150MA@+5VDC; 350mA, maximum 

Power <1.5W, operating current<300mA 

Electrostatic Protection 15 kV air / 8 kV contact discharges (EN61000-4-2,1995 :Level 4) 

Controller Integration inside touch panel 

Agency Approvals CE, FCC, Rohs 

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Samsung  has unveiled a prototype phone with a flexible display, meaning it can be  folded almost like paper.

During its keynote speech at the CES 2013  trade show yesterday (January 9), the Korean firm showed off the bendy display  technology, as well as a phone with a curved display.

Instead of glass, the flexible phone features super-thin plastic that means it  is bendable and unbreakable. The device demonstrated at the keynote ran Windows Phone 8 rather than Android.

Samsung-Logo

Samsung is creating a whole new range of  organic light-emitting diode (OLED) flexible displays under the Youm branding.

The screens can be made super-thin and flexible as they use OLED  technology, which generates its own light and so does not need to be backlit  like traditional LCD screens.

Microsoft’s chief technical strategy  officer Eric Rudder came on stage to show a working Windows Phone 8 prototype  phone with Samsung’s new Youm screen.

The demonstration unit had the  bendy display attached to a box containing the processor. The phone was shown to  flex and bend without any major distortion to the colours or icons.

Samsung has been working on flexible displays for several years and previously released  a video showing the potential applications for ‘bendy’ smartphones or  tablets.

Samsung said that the Youm technology will allow its  hardware partners to create a whole new range of devices with “bended, foldable  and moulded screens”.

At the keynote, Samsung Display executive Brian  Berkeley said: “It won’t break even if it’s dropped. This new form-factor will  really begin to change how people interact with their devices, opening up new  lifestyle possibilities … allow our partners to create a whole new ecosystem  of devices.”

The company also showed off a Youm device with a display  that was curved at the edge, designed to give extra screen real estate.

Samsung suggested that the curved edge could be used to display messages  to the user while keeping the rest of the display free.

Some reports  have suggested that Samsung’s Youm flexible display technology will debut with  the firm’s Galaxy S4 smartphone, which is expected to be unveiled this spring.

Philips has unveiled the first of its new TV’s for 2012 with the announcement of four new ranges covering the budget to mid-range sector of the TV market.

Philips 46PFL7007T Front Image

All of the new sets are due to be available in the 2nd quarter of 2012 and carry the Philips hallmark of superb picture quality, powerful sound and exceptional design with high quality materials and finishes. Smart TV functionality – including for the first time smaller screen sizes – features heavily within the new line-up which also includes both passive and active 3D technology.

First is the 3000 series (available in 32”,37”,42” and 47”) which are Full HD (plus a 32” HD version) LCD TVs with 100HZ picture processing (PMR), 28.9 billion colour reproduction, 100,000:1 contrast ratio, a single USB slot for  multimedia playback and 3 HDMI inputs, with Easylink.

One step up is the 3500 series (available in 19”, 22”, 24” 32”, 37” and 42”) the first of Philips LED sets with a superb 500,000:1 contrast level. The 3500 series is also Philips first range to add Smart TV and DLNA functionality with wireless connectivity via an optional USB adaptor and adds a second USB slot for multimedia playback.

The 4000 series (available in 32”, 37”, 42” and 47”) adds Philips acclaimed Pixel Plus HD processing and 200Hz Perfect Motion Rate for super images. The TVs are also LAN ready and can access the internet via the multimedia home network. This opens a world of rich content accessible via online video stores, digital media libraries, YouTube, and the open internet. Catch up TV Apps ensure that users can watch their favourite movies, shows, sports events and daily soaps whenever they want.

The 6000 series (available in 32”, 37”, 42”, 47” and 55”) is the first Ambilight range in Philips new TV line-up featuring the Ambilight Spectra 2 system and an improved 400Hz Perfect Motion Rate.

Other features added by the 6000 series include integrated Wi-Fi connectivity and voice and video calls via Skype. The series is also the first in Philips new range to include 3D technology via the passive Easy 3D system which also features both two player gaming and 3D depth adjustment.

Finally, the 7000 series (available in 40”, 46” and 55”) adds Philips superb Pixel Precise HD processing and 800Hz Perfect Motion Rate plus the active shutter 3D Max system.

Prices will be confirmed on product availability.

More info when we get it.

One of the very cool new things Samsung showed off at CES 2012 was their Transparent Smart Window. We take a look at it, or should that be through it?

UWHS - Samsung Trasparent Smart Window - 1

This technology isn’t available yet, although it will be available during this year, so it isn’t one of those “available in 20 years” demos. This was probably the coolest thing I saw at CES this year, and it really reminded me of Minority Report with Tom Cruise!

It was tucked away in the outer corner of Samsung’s booth and as you can imagine there were always people crowding around, which is why the video and pictures I took are not the best!

UWHS - Samsung Trasparent Smart Window - 2UWHS - Samsung Trasparent Smart Window - 3UWHS - Samsung Trasparent Smart Window - 4UWHS - Samsung Trasparent Smart Window - 5

Here is a short video we took (apologies for the quality):

UWHS–Samsung’s Transparent Smart Window

 

Here is Samsung’s video (which is a lot better):

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This week at IFA 2010 Toshiba announced their new CEVO-Engine for superior TV experiences and the first TV – the 55ZL1.

55ZL1_ side55ZL1_bezel55ZL1_front55ZL1_lft55ZL1_Lifestyle55ZL1_right55ZL1_stand

Facts & Figures

· First Model with new CEVO-Engine
· Full HD 16:9 LCD panel with Direct LED backlight, 1920 x 1080 pixels
· MEGA LED panel with 512 cluster local dimming
· Active Vision M400 HD (400Hz)
· 3D FULL HD
· embedded high performance 2D to 3D conversion, Intelligent 3D, 3D Resolution+
· HbbTV support
· Toshiba Places portal integrated
· Screen size: 55ZL1: 140cm (55”)
· Designed in collaboration with JACOB JENSEN DESIGN

As you can see, it is designed to work out of the box with their recently announced Toshiba Places and Toshiba Marketplace.

Here is the full press release:

TV evolution by chip technology: Toshiba unveils its new CEVO-Engine for a superior TV experience

55 ZL1 TV will be powered by Toshiba’s CEVO-Engine to drive various unrivalled technologies and applications in 2D and 3D

Berlin, Germany, 2nd September 2010 – Toshiba today introduced its new CEVO-Engine1 to the European home entertainment market.
An intelligent combination of its skills in semiconductor and software development allowed Toshiba to develop this new multi-processor
platform TV engine to power its premium TVs. The CEVO-Engine enables the devices to offer an outstanding picture quality, powerful
3D solutions and a rich web experience. Toshiba’s new flagship TV, the 55ZL1, is the first device that benefits from the enormous
calculation power of the CEVO-Engine and enables it to offer many unrivalled applications. In addition to its CEVO Engine, the 55ZL1
carries much more innovations: Its bright MEGA LED Panel with an as yet unseen 512-cluster local dimming solution, working alongside the
CEVO engine guarantees outstanding picture quality. As a premium TV needs a premium design, Toshiba collaborated with JACOB
JENSEN DESIGN to create an eye-catching masterpiece in technology, usability and design heralding a new era in home entertainment.
Bundled expertise in semi conductor and software technology “True innovations in the TV industry today are primarily based on a
close functional interaction of high calculation power and intelligent, user-centric applications,” says Toshihiro Ikeda, President, Toshiba
Television Central Europe Sp. zo. o. “That’s why Toshiba has bundled its outstanding knowledge in semiconductor design and software
development to develop a brand new multi-processor platform together with tailored applications to meet the demands of home
entertainment enthusiasts.”

1 CEVO-Engine is a Toshiba code name

The new CEVO-Engine is at the heart of Toshiba’s strategy to establish a strong presence in the European high-end home
entertainment market with user-centric applications. According to Toshiba’s market research, the European TV market requires for
more sophisticated TVs. 91% of users say highest possible picture quality is the top criteria in the purchase decision. 69% demand for
easy access to the Web and 61% for most powerful 3D solutions including high quality 2D to 3D conversion. Powered by the CEVO
Engine combined with additional innovations, the new 55ZL1 will be able to exactly meet these needs.

Superior 3D technologies powered by CEVO-Engine CEVO-Engine offers superior picture quality and also an impressive
brightness in 3D mode. As active shutter glasses, that are needed to watch 3D content, distinctly reduce the brightness of displayed
pictures Intelligent 3D automatically sets the adequate brightness as soon as it detects a 3D signal. Also other picture parameters such as
colour contrast are changed by shutter glasses. Intelligent 3D compensates for these deteriorations as well. Since digital TV
broadcasting may use a lower bandwidth and transmit pictures with lower resolution in side-by-side mode, than e.g. a Blu-ray 3D disc, the
perceived sharpness of 3D programmes may be reduced. 3D Resolution+, a technology that analyses each image and uses
complex algorithms to calculate the missing image content, compensates for these effects. The result is a significantly sharper,
more detailed near FULL-HD 3D TV experience. In addition, Toshiba’s high performance 2D to 3D conversion technology captures
and analyzes image composition and movement in 2D content and converts it to 3D with precise rendering and natural, high definition
images. To cope with the complex algorithm the CEVO-Engine features a powerful processing unit that exclusively caters for the
complex algorithms for the 2D to 3D conversion.

Hybrid services with HbbTV

The Toshiba new engine supports Hybrid broadcast broadband TV (HbbTV). It is a European standard that allows devices to display
broadcasts and related web based content on the TV screen at the same time. It also offers access to online services directly on the TV.

Ready to enjoy value-added services with Toshiba Places

User can access many more value-added services due to the integration of ‘Toshiba Places’ portal. Also, the cloud-based offering
will extend Toshiba’s Multi Screen Strategy from connecting devices locally to connecting devices via the web to enable users to easily and
intuitively share, store, access and buy multimedia content or apps.

Innovations for an outstanding picture quality

The motion picture enhancement function Active Vision M400HD also makes its debut in the 55ZL1. It is a hybrid frame interpolation
technique that adds 150 interpolated frames to the received pictures in the signal by using the calculation power of CEVO-Engine and
combines this with backlight scanning to achieve a 400 Hz frame sequence. The result is noticeably sharper moving pictures.
The 55ZL1 features an bright, luminous Mega LED panel. An innovative local dimming technology that individually triggers 512 LED
areas to adjust the backlight according to the displayed content – the maximum yet achieved in the industry – assures extremely high
contrast and precise black and grey scale.

Designed in collaboration with JACOB JENSEN DESIGN

To meet the challenge to pack high-end technology into a sensational design, Toshiba decided to cooperate with the awarded Danish
designers of JACOB JENSEN DESIGN. They joined forces to create a modern and timeless design with high-quality materials..

Price and availability

The 140cm/55” 55ZL1 will be available early 2011 throughout Europe targeting a recommended market retail price lower than 5.000 Euros.

Having seen this TV in action I can honestly say it looks and performs amazingly, but then at the price you would expect that!

For more information, visit the Toshiba website.

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On a recent trip to Paris with Ubisoft for Watch Dogs, I had the chance to play Watch Dogs for a few hours, from the start, and here are my thoughts.