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Leo Waldock

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Evesham Core 2 Duo Solar Storm PC

Evesham Solar Storm Windows Vista PC

Review By current standards the Solar Storm is very conventional and uses a Core 2 Duo processor, as Intel's silicon offers both superb dual-core performance as well as value for money. In this case it's an E6400 model that runs at 2.13GHz on a 1,066MHz FSB. There are two 512MB PC2-5300U modules to give 1GB of dual-channel memory, and …
Leo Waldock, 30 Jan 2007

The Ultimate Windows Vista laptop

The most visible part of Windows Vista is the Aero interface, and while we can't deny that it looks very swish we find it very hard to get excited by a shiny new GUI. Instead, we're looking forward to new Vista hardware, which includes a new use for the humble USB memory key and much, much more. So what will the ultimate Windows …
Leo Waldock, 23 Jan 2007

Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600 four-core CPU

Review At the beginning of November Intel launched its four-core Core 2 Extreme QX6700 processor, where the Q, of course, stands for 'quad'. This Extreme processor has an unlocked multiplier so we reviewers can have fun experimenting with a £650 piece of silicon while the buying public regards Extreme products as a technological …
Leo Waldock, 08 Jan 2007

Intel vs AMD - integrated graphics shoot-out

Head-to-Head Make no mistake about it, the AMD Athlon 64 X2 dual-core processor struggles to compete with Intel's Core 2 Duo, and the upcoming four-core Core 2 Quad will move the goalposts even further away. Which gives AMD a major problem until it starts to roll out Athlon 64 X4 mid-2007. Meanwhile, it can’t rely on sales of mobile …
Leo Waldock, 15 Dec 2006

LG GBW-H10N internal Blu-ray disc burner

Review We previewed LG's Blu-ray drive a few weeks ago and it's the third Blu-ray burner we've tested, the first was the SH-B022 from Samsung, the second being Pioneer's BDR-101A. That had a 2x BD-R burn speed and cost £699 back in August, although it now fetches £520. In comparison, this new LG has a faster burn speed and retails for …
Leo Waldock, 13 Dec 2006

HD TV in the UK

Buyer's Guide Christmas is a-coming and the consumer electronics industry is out to sell you a brand spanking new HD TV. But is now the right time to buy? In this fully revised and updated report, Reg Hardware guides you past the gotchas... EICTA HDTV logo Analogue to digital The digital switchover starts in 2008 when the Border region …
Leo Waldock, 08 Dec 2006

Shuttle XPC mini X100HA slimline PC

Review Most Shuttle XPC small form-factor systems such as the SN27P2 and the SN37PS look like a cut-down PC tower, but the XPC mini X100HA sets a new standard. It's absolutely tiny. We previewed the X100 here and now we've got our mitts on a real, live working example... The photos don't do the tiny size justice, so to put things in …
Leo Waldock, 29 Nov 2006

Auzentech X-Meridian 7.1 sound card

Review The vast majority of modern motherboards have integrated HD audio, and if you do fancy an sonic upgrade, most likely for gaming, the obvious candidate is a Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi. So where the heck does Auzentech hope its X-Meridian 7.1 sound card will fit in? Integrated HD audio is fairly impressive and while the exact …
Leo Waldock, 23 Nov 2006

Nvidia GeForce 8800 GTS graphics card

Review Plonk a Sparkle card based on Nvidia's GeForce 8800 GTS graphics chip next to its bigger brother, the GeForce 8800 GTX - reviewed here - and you can quickly spot a couple of differences. The GTS is visibly shorter than the GTX - 23cm against 24cm - and it has a single six-pin PCI Express power connector sticking off the end, …
Leo Waldock, 16 Nov 2006

SMC WSKP100 Skype phone

Review It’s getting difficult to move for Wi-Fi Skype phones here at Vulture Central. Belkin has announced its Wi-Fi Phone for Skype and Lars has reviewed the Netgear SPH101 and now we have the SMC WSKP100. The Belkin and SMC products appear to use the same Accton handset so there is precious little to tell them apart and to date the …
Leo Waldock, 10 Nov 2006

Nvidia GeForce 8800 GTX graphics card

Review Are you ready for DirectX 10 gaming under Windows Vista? No? Didn't think so. Today Nvidia finally unveiled its new DX10-capable graphics chip, the GeForce 8800 - aka 'G80' - but is it worth forking out for one now, or should you wait until Windows Vista ships? Read on to find out how good the GeForce 8800 GTX really is... …
Leo Waldock, 08 Nov 2006

Evesham Mini PC

Review Ever fancied a black Mac Mini? Well, the Evesham Mini PC isn't quite a Mac mini, nor is it exactly black, but on both points it comes close. Evesham's box is based on the tiny MP945-VXR chassis from AOpen, which has been out to out-Mini the Mac Mini for a couple of years now. The Mini PC measures 17 x 17cm and stands 6.1cm tall …
Leo Waldock, 27 Oct 2006
The Register breaking news

Sony Vaio VGC-LA1 all-on-one PC

Review Let's suppose you're a City high-flyer and you want a computer for your Docklands loft. Or perhaps you're a hip and happening teenager who wants to watch TV and use the internet in the privacy of your bedroom. Maybe you're a student who has moved away from home and you don't have the space to house a TV and a PC. …
Leo Waldock, 23 Oct 2006

Shuttle XPC SN27P2 small form-factor PC

Review With the demise of Airfix, we blokes are left with few hobbies to pursue. Happily, we can still build our own PCs. If you want to work on the cheap you can use a beige tower, but should you fancy a modicum of style then there's no better starting point than a Shuttle barebone... shuttle_sn27p2 The Shuttle XPC SN27P2 is …
Leo Waldock, 18 Oct 2006

Albatron takes off with speedy graphics card

Albatron has been quick off the mark with its new GeForce 7950GT. The core is clocked at 550MHz and the 512MB of DDR3 memory runs at an effective 1.4GHz, so it's a reference design through and through. Albatron_7950GT Albatron is pushing the fact that the card has a DVI connector and Dual Link DVI connector for HDTV and TV- …
Leo Waldock, 08 Sep 2006

Formac adds Performance trio

Formac has added three 19inch TFT displays to its range. These fall under a new category of Performance models which is added to the existing range of Professional models. The Gallery 1900 TNX is available in black, white or silver, or rather the bezel and two tabs on the stand are in the stated colour, but the overall …
Leo Waldock, 08 Sep 2006

T-Mobile pushes into email

T-Mobile has expanded its range of email devices with the addition of the Nokia E61 and BlackBerry Pearl. nokia e61 T-Mobile will supply the E61 with web'n'walk internet on the move, with Co Pilot Live 6 satellite navigation software as an option. The E61 will be on sale in T-Mobile stores from free up to £159.99, depending …
Leo Waldock, 08 Sep 2006

Foxconn enters the graphics card market with a bang

Taiwanese component manufacturer Foxconn has announced a range of Nvidia chipped cards that stretch from a GeForce 7950 GX2 down to a 7100GS, with the whole gamut of 7900, 7600 and 7300 models in between. Foxconn_7950GX2 While it may be tempting to write this off as yet another company joining a graphics market that is …
Leo Waldock, 08 Sep 2006

IBM takes 'Broadway' to the Nintendo stage

IBM is to start shipping its "Broadway" PowerPC processor to Nintendo for use in its Wii games console. Broadway uses a 90 nm SOI CMOS process and is manufactured at IBM's East Fishkill, NY, fabrication facility on 300mm wafers. IBM_Broadway The press release doesn't provide any new information about the technology behind …
Leo Waldock, 08 Sep 2006
The Register breaking news

BenQ launches compact camera duo

BenQ has launched two very similar compact digital cameras. Apart from the CCD megapixel ratings and price - the C740 is 7 megapixel camera retailing at £139.99, and the C540 offers 5 megapixels for £89.99 - the models appear to be identical. The pair sport a 2.5inch LCD screen and a Pentax lens with 3x optical zoom. …
Leo Waldock, 08 Sep 2006

LaCie expands SAFE drives

LaCie has expanded its range of biometric hard drives to offer a greater choice of capacities. The ranges are 40-120GB for the Mobile Edition and 160-500GB for the Desktop Edition. All the models use a USB 2.0 interface and are compatible with both Windows and Mac OS, and of course they all have the biometric feature that …
Leo Waldock, 07 Sep 2006

Pearl of the BlackBerry ocean?

Here we are, spouting off about Samsung having a potential BlackBerry killer in the SGH-i600 and all along RIM has a smartphone in the works. Who'd have thought it? Blackberry_pearl The BlackBerry Pearl 8100 is a candybar that measures 107 x 50 x 14mm (HxWxD)and weighs a mere 89g. The 240 x 260 screen dimensions aren't given …
Leo Waldock, 07 Sep 2006

HTC's much-awaited handsets unveiled

Four HTC Windows Mobile 5.0 handsets were unveiled today, following months of speculation and various leaks. First up is the P3300, HTC's first dedicated navigation PDA. The handset comes with in-built GPS and TomTom NAVIGATOR 6. You browse the 2D and 3D maps using HTC's RollR (Trackball and Track Wheel) and can expect to …
Leo Waldock, 07 Sep 2006
The Register breaking news

Mac Mini gets a speed boost

Apple has given its two Mac Mini models a makeover. The £529 model now sports a 1.83GHz Core Duo processor, which is a speed bump from 1.66GHz. Meanwhile, its £399 baby brother uses a 1.66GHz Core Duo instead of a 1.5GHz Core Solo. apple intel-based mac mini Both models run the CPU on a 667MHz FSB with 512MB of DDR2 RAM and …
Leo Waldock, 07 Sep 2006

AMD slashes prices and launches X2 5200+

AMD announced the launch of the latest member of its dual-core Athlon 64 X2 family yesterday, though information about the 5200+ was limited to the tray price – US$403 per 1,000 – with no mention of the clock speed, TDP, cache, socket and so on. Now that AMD has revised its website, two things have become clear. First, the X2 …
Leo Waldock, 07 Sep 2006

New iMacs - 24-inch screen

Apple has announced that its iMac range now exclusively uses the Intel Core 2 Duo processor and it’s celebrating the happy occasion by adding a 24in widescreen iMac to the existing 17 and 20in models. The 17in starts at £679 with a basic 1.83GHz Core 2 Duo processor, 512MB RAM, 160GB SATA HDD, a CD/DVD combo drive, Intel GMA950 …
Leo Waldock, 06 Sep 2006

Samsung SGH-i600 Smartphone

Samsung was showing its SGH-i600 Smartphone at IFA 2006 and judging by what we’ve seen, RIM should be afraid for the popularity of its beloved Blackberry. The i600 is single-handed design so you don’t need to use both thumbs to navigate the QWERTY keypad and it has a decent-sized 2.3inch screen with 320x240 resolution and 65, …
Leo Waldock, 06 Sep 2006

Nvidia launches GeForce 7950 GT and 7900 GS chips

Nvidia has launched two new versions of its mighty GeForce 7900 graphics chip with the GeForce 7900 GS going on sale immediately and the GeForce 7950 GT hitting the shops on 14 September. The two new chips fill a gaping chasm in the Nvidia product range between the GeForce 7600 GT at £100-£150 and the GeForce 7900 GTX at £265-£ …
Leo Waldock, 06 Sep 2006

Creative launches Live! Cam Voice webcam

Creative has launched a new webcam, and ominously the Creative Live! Cam Voice, which is the 13th model in its extensive range and the ninth to use that blasted exclamation mark after the word ‘Live’. It claims to be the first webcam on the market to offer built-in dual microphones and a true 1.3 Megapixel lens with intelligent …
Leo Waldock, 06 Sep 2006
The Register breaking news

Apple mobile due early 2007, analyst claims

Analysts are predicting that Apple will launch a mobile phone in the first half of 2007. According to Shaw Wu of American Technology Research “The new phone's design will be similar to that of the iPod Nano, and is likely to come in three colours—white, black and platinum.” Phew, they’ve got the colours sorted out then. Wu …
Leo Waldock, 06 Sep 2006

Sony delays PS3

The Sony press release says it all rather concisely: ‘Sony Computer Entertainment Europe Announces New March 2007 date for European Launch of Playstation 3." Sony Computer Entertainment Europe (SCEE) today announced that it would revise the launch date of its Playstation 3 computer entertainment system in the PAL territories of …
Leo Waldock, 06 Sep 2006

New LocationFree kit from Sony

Sony launched its LocationFree media streaming system in May of this year and now it seems that Version 2 with Added Bling is on its way. The Americans have been treated to a stack of new kit today which consists of a choice of two Base Stations as well as a new Location Free TV Box. You stream media from the Base Station and …
Leo Waldock, 05 Sep 2006

Socket to me VIA

VIA’s Mini-ITX EPIA PN motherboard has been spotted on sale in Tokyo, Japan and while two versions use a VIA C7-M processor (choice of 1.5GHz or 1.8GHz if you really want to know), the third version has a 479-pin processor socket. Combine that with the VN800+VT8237R chipset combo and it’s a safe bet that the PN supports the …
Leo Waldock, 05 Sep 2006

Nokia puts more love in L'Amour collection

Nokia has launched three new mobile phones as an update to its L'Amour collection, the Nokia 7390 WCDMA (3G), Nokia 7373 and Nokia 7360. The 7390 offers high speed streaming and video calling, a three megapixel camera with autofocus and integrated flash, and music player with one-button access. The Nokia 7373 has a 2 Megapixel …
Leo Waldock, 05 Sep 2006

iMac-ulate ENlight LP791 chassis

Chassis manufacturer ENlight has come up with a barebones offering that is out of the ordinary for us PC boys, but iMac users may find it strangely familiar. In essence, you build your PC into a 19inch TFT display which has a resolution of 1,280 x 1,024, contrast ratio of 500:1 and brightness of 270cd/m2. Your micro-ATX …
Leo Waldock, 05 Sep 2006

Core 2 Duo jargon decoder

Intel's Core 2 Duo may be the world's most advanced desktop microprocessor, but like all those that have come before it - and almost certainly those yet to appear - its arrival is accompanied by a veritable dictionary of jargon and tech-talk. Baffled by 'Digital Media Boost'? Can't get your head around 'Viiv'? Look no further …
Leo Waldock, 30 Aug 2006

ATI claims World+Dog wants Vista Premium not Basic

When we kicked off our investigation into Windows Vista's hardware requirements we glossed over the graphics part of the system requirements and simply said that you need DirectX 9 hardware. It turns out things are rather more complicated than that plain statement suggests, and that may mean trouble ahead for Intel. A Windows …
Leo Waldock, 23 Jun 2006
The Register breaking news

ATI denies 80nm problems

When Windows Vista hits the shops at the turn of the New Year it will include DirectX 10 which supports Shader Model with unified Shaders, as opposed to dedicated Pixel, Vertex and Geometry Shaders. This is a significant change for ATI and Nvidia and it means that the next chips will be taking a much greater step than a …
Leo Waldock, 16 Jun 2006
Think Outside Boomtube

What's Boomtube? Yup, speakers in a tube

Think Outside's Boomtube portable speakers are housed in an aluminium tube with ends that twist off that reveal stereo satellite speakers. The central section accommodates a pair of 56mm/2 inch drivers, so that's four drivers, with a total rating of 40Watts RMS. It also accommodates a rechargeable Li-Ion battery that is claimed …
Leo Waldock, 16 Jun 2006
Acer MP 500 small

Acer MP-500 breaks cover in Germany

We've been waiting for Acer's MP-500 PMP for some time now and, if a product page on Acer's German website is anything to go by, it seems that the launch day may be very close. The MP-500's key features are a 3.5 inch QVGA screen with 320 x 240 resolution, a 20GB 1.8 inch hard drive for storage along with an SD slot, dimensions …
Leo Waldock, 16 Jun 2006
Mio C210 Sat Nav

Mio launches C210 Sat Nav in Brussels

Belgian company Mio Technology has launched the C210 Sat Nav package, with a very reasonable retail price of £199. This SiRFstarIII GPS receiver combines a 400 MHz processor, a 2.7 inch screen and an SD slot for the map. It weighs 110g and runs on four AA batteries to provide over 4.5 hours of navigation on foot with the …
Leo Waldock, 16 Jun 2006

HTC launches its first Windows 3G phones

HTC, the Taiwanese ODM company that designs and builds a huge number of Windows mobile phones, has launched two 3G models under its own brand. The company has sold phones under its Qtek brand for some time, in addition to the phones it sells to network operators such as Orange and T-Mobile, but it now plans to migrate Qtek …
Leo Waldock, 15 Jun 2006
The Register breaking news

The truth about Windows Vista hardware

No doubt you've visited the Microsoft Windows Vista webpage, and possibly you've run the evaluation tool to check whether your PC is able to run the version of Vista that will fulfil all of your needs. In which case, the odds are that you're sitting there chuffed to mint balls, happy that your 800MHz CPU, 512MB of memory and …
Leo Waldock, 15 Jun 2006

Non-scents from Nokia

For six months, 25 Industrial Design MA students from London's CSM College of Art and Design have been working to create concepts for a premium but mass market mobile device capable of providing 4G or 5G multimedia services. The students worked for a cash prize and, more importantly, for the chance to work side-by-side with …
Leo Waldock, 14 Jun 2006
The Register breaking news

Small but perfectly formed Meizu Mini Player

Smaller than a business card, but rather thicker, the Meizu Mini Player measures 79 x 48.2 x 10mm and weighs 55g. Desperate to maintain the metaphor we’ve confirmed this is the equivalent of 45 business cards. The dominant feature of the Mini Player is the 2.4inch/61mm screen which has a QVGA resolution of 320x240 pixels. The …
Leo Waldock, 13 Jun 2006
The Register breaking news

Artist's impressions from BenQ-Siemens

Mobile phones are wonderful things but blimey you can get sick and tired of looking at reams of photos all showing little screens and keyboards. So we say God Bless BenQ-Siemens and all who sale in her for making life more interesting by releasing a series of design sketches of three of its latest phones. We kick off with the …
Leo Waldock, 13 Jun 2006
Sony SDM E96D

Sony engineers in shock Post-it® notes discovery

Sony has launched two new TFT displays with a unique new feature - the bottom bezel is extended to form a surface where you can keep Post-it® notes. You also get a groove which can accommodate pens. It is a mystery why they didn't go the whole hog and include a hand filing cabinet and somewhere to keep your sandwiches. Sony …
Leo Waldock, 13 Jun 2006

Panasonic camcorder supports SDHC media

The new SDR-S150 is an update of the SDR-S100 camcorder which records to SD card, rather than DV tape, hard disk, or DVD. The SDR-S100 uses conventional SD media which has a maximum capacity of 2GB, while the SDR-S150 supports both SD and the brand new SDHC (SD High-Capacity) card. SDHC is the same physical size as SD but …
Leo Waldock, 12 Jun 2006
homeless man with sign

Acer pushes three huge TFT displays

Acer has announced three enormous TFT displays – two in its Value Line and one in its Office Line. The additions to the Value Line are a 22 inch and 26 inch model, while the Office Line is boosted by a 24 inch offering. The 22 inch Value Line AL2216W has a resolution of 1,680x1,050, contrast ratio of 700:1 and a 300cd/m2 …
Leo Waldock, 12 Jun 2006
Sony DLSR A100

Sony unveils its first D-SLR, the Alpha 100

Sony's new D-SLR Alpha 100, or α100 if you prefer, takes over where Konica Minolta left off when it pulled out of the camera business earlier this year. The Alpha combines a Sony 10 megapixel APS sensor with a stack of technologies including Super SteadyShot which is mounted in the body of the camera, rather than the lens. The …
Leo Waldock, 12 Jun 2006