Sunday, August 31, 2008

Sunday Stories:Kesselman Mazda CX-7

Kesselman Mazda CX-7

Involved in motorsport for many years, Oleg Kesselman decided to share a bit of his knowledge and love for high performance cars by tuning them with his experts hands. At the Moscow Auto Show, his booth displayed a Mazda CX-7, yes a CX-7, not an RX-7, RX-8, not even a Mazda Roadster or anything coming from Mazdaspeed...but worry not, this family car has a couple tricks up its sleeves...

The first shock comes from the looks, is this really a Mazda CX-7? Indeed it is, but severely modified with an extra large and racy body kit, lowered body, very big brakes, very big rims...this is not the CX-7 you usually drive to the supermarket in or take your kids to school...they wouldn't fit! The interior features a roll cage, a couple racing bucket seats, Momo steering wheel and...that's pretty much it! What we have here is one of the most extreme Mazda CX-7s out there!

Unfortunately, full specs aren't available and by looking at these these pictures it's impossible to say whether the engine has been modified, even though it's very likely. Russian style anyone?

Sunday Stories : Nismo ClubSport Package for Nissan R35 GT-R

Nismo ClubSport Package for Nissan R35 GT-R

The first Nismo package for the Nissan GT-R is finally coming out and was designed in order to improve the GT-R in many ways including power, handling, response and style.

Sold as a total upgrade solution for those who want more out of their GT-R, the package includes the following:

* 20 inch Rays lightweight forged aluminium wheels
* Bilstein Damptronic Suspension
* Recaro Carbon/Leather seats
* Titanium Exhaust System
* Carbon Fibre Rear Diffuser
* Nismo Badging

Now the bad news, the whole thing costs a hefty 5,460,000 JPY (50.000USD) and can only be bought by Japanese customers, then installed in a few Nismo centers in the country starting september 30th, 2008.
Even though it comes with a 3 years/60.000km warranty, that's a bit hard to swallow, especially when only 2 items on the above list are really 100% made by Nismo, a Badge and an Exhaust line... Savvy buyers will surely find other way to get more from their GT-R for Cheaper... like over at Mine's or COBB Tuning.


Thursday, August 28, 2008

NEC's All in One Touch Panel, Atom Powered PC

NEC's All in One Touch Panel, Atom Powered PC

NEC Japan this morning announced two new PNC's. The 12PNC-W2/B2 (12”) and 15PNC-W2/B2 (15’) are two all in one PCs powered by an ATOM CPU Z530 @ 1.6GHz, with either 512MB or 1GB of RAM, 80GB of HDD, XP Embedded, Vista Business for Embedded and touch screen.


Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Canon PowerShot E1... Made by and for Women

Canon PowerShot E1... Made by and for WomenWho said that camera could not be made for Women? Certainly not a lot of people (including ourselves) for sure... But even if the concept behind camera made for women is not something new, Canon today decided to go even further on this matter by introducing a new PowerShot the E1, which feature a nice and “soft” design available in 3 cute colors like Vanilla White, Pink Cotton and Aqua Blue.

Our 10Mpix Camera feature the DIGICIII, a 4x Optical Zoom, an Image Stabilizer, has an ISO Range from 80 to 1600 (with a 3200 Boost Mode) for a size of 101.2x31.4x63.8mm and 160g only.


Sunday, August 24, 2008

Sunday Stories: Design: Iacoski's Datsun Fairlady Z Concept

Design: Iacoski's Datsun Fairlady Z Concept

A couple months ago, Benjamin Nawka was asked by Nissan to bring the Datsun name back to life through a design study named "X Link". Even though we have no idea what Nissan plans regarding Datsun might be, it seems to have motivated other designers including Iacoski. Here's his vision for a future Datsun Fairlady Z.

Moving away from the design of the recent Z (350), this concept is inspired by the legendary 240/280Z and the Nissan GT-R. Pretty amazing result isn't it?


Sunday Stories: Mitsubishi Racing Lancer : Mitsubishi's Racing Lancer To Enter The Portuguese Baja Permalink Mitsubishi's Racing Lancer To Enter The

Mitsubishi Racing Lancer : Mitsubishi's Racing Lancer To Enter The Portuguese Baja

Mitsubishi Motors Corporation (MMC) and its motorsport unit MMSP have developed a new cross-country rally car, the turbodiesel "Racing Lancer" which will be entered Baja Portalegre / Portugal.

The team's 2008 calendar also features selected rounds of the inaugural Dakar Series, the FIA Cross-Country Rally World Cup and the FIA international Cup for Cross-Country Bajas with the tried and tested Pajero/Montero Evolution.

In parallel to its competition activities, Team Repsol Mitsubishi Ralliart is also furthering the development of the new "Racing Lancer" with the clear objective of winning the Dakar in 2009.

As officially revealed, the team's latest cross-country rally car will be powered by a new turbocharged diesel engine which has already been put through its paces in a specific version of the Pajero/Montero Evolution on the following races: the Central Europe Rally (the first event of the newly-created Dakar Series), the Rali Transiberico (second round of FIA Cross-Country Rally World Cup) and the Baja Espana (round three of the FIA International Cup for Cross-Country Bajas).

Competing at rally speeds against the sport's leading teams has enabled the team to gather a vast amount of valuable data which could not have been obtained through testing alone. Hiroshi Masuoka (Japan) has competed twice with the turbocharged Pajero/Montero Evolution and is typically enthusiastic about the newcomer's potential: "The diesel version is overwhelmingly easy to drive thanks to its tremendous torque which is available over an even broader rev-band," says Masuoka. "It outperforms the petrol-powered car in terms of controllability over challenging terrain, as well as when accelerating out of corners and along high-speed straights. With the right set-up it would be comfortably faster."

Joan 'Nani' Roma (Spain) drove a Pajero/Montero Evolution, with the new turbodiesel grafted into it, on the Rali Transiberico. He reported that he had to adapt his driving style to the new engine's torque characteristics. Roma succeeded in posting three fastest stage times on the Portuguese event and actually led at one point, speaking volumes for the potential of the new engine.

This experimental car covered more than 8,000km in testing and competition, and the engineers in charge of the program have profited from this opportunity to develop a new suspension geometry designed to cope with the different weight distribution and torque characteristics associated with the new turbocharged diesel engine. They have also worked on a new engine compartment layout which is aimed at ensuring better cooling for the engine and auxiliary components. Technical improvements to the turbocharger have produced improved response at low revs, as well as more power at high engine speeds, while reliability has also been enhanced.

The "Racing Lancer" took part in two one-week test sessions in Spain and Morocco towards the end of June following its unveiling earlier in the month. With the basic performance package now confirmed and initial teething problems cured, the team is taking advantage of the considerable experience obtained with the Pajero/Montero Evolution to accelerate the new vehicle's development.

Continuing the build-up to the 2009 Dakar, the team has entered three petrol versions of the Pajero/Montero Evolution for Portugal's PAX Rally, the second event of the newly-created Dakar Series (Tuesday September 9 - Sunday September 14). The three cars will be driven by Stéphane Peterhansel (France), Luc Alphand (France), and Joan "Nani" Roma (Spain). The outing will enable the team to carry out work on the suspension and tires which will be carried over to the Racing Lancer.

The Racing Lancer itself will undergo further testing in Morocco between the end of August and the beginning of September, as well as over the latter part of October. Each test will last approximately two weeks and the car will cover some 4,000km each time. Following its extensive development program, the Racing Lancer will make its official debut on the Baja Portalegre / Portugal, round six of the 2008 FIA Cross-Country Rally World Cup (Thursday October 30 - Sunday November 2). The car will be in the hands of Stéphane Peterhansel, the Dakar's most successful competitor with a total of nine outright wins - on two and four wheels - under his belt.



Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Sanyo's Full HD Projector

PLV-Z700: New entry-level Full HD projector from Sanyo for European market

Today Sanyo announced a new entry-level Full HD PLV-Z700 home-use projector in Europe. This projector is very similar in external design to the PLV-Z2000 that was announced around this same time last year. Internally, however, there are some differences. The contrast ratio is 10,000:1 while the Z2000 is 15,000:1. Also, there are other minor differences, but we are very happy to hear that Sanyo has made an entry-level version of its very popular Z2000--maybe I can afford one now!

The new projector will be on sale from October 2008 in Europe and possible in the US, although we have yet to see the announcement from there.


Tuesday, August 19, 2008

TEAC Reference 380

TEAC introduced new Hifi systems, the Reference 380

TEAC Corporation unveiled, in Japan, HiFi System which features a CD player (PD-H380), AM/FM Tuner (TH-380), an Amplifier (A-H380), and Two Speakers (LS-H250).

About our Amplifier, the A-H380, provides a maximum power of 45Watts x 2 (6Ω, 1 kHz, 0.1%), a Signal-Noise Ratio of 100dB (IHF-A), a frequency response of 10Hz~65kHz and Total Harmonic Distortion (THD) of 0.1%. This amp also features 5 RCA inputs, 2 RCA Outputs, as well as an iPod dock Adaptor. It’s announced a price of 290€.

The CD player, the PD-H380, allows to play MP3/WMA files, as well as CD-R/RW. It features an USB port, and provides a frequency response of 20Hz-20,000kHz ±2.0dB, a Total Harmonic Distortion of 0.005% (1kHz, 0dB), a signal noise ratio of 120dB (1kHz, 0dB, A weight). 260€.

Our AM/FM Tuner provides 30 Presets. About the FM-Tuner specifications, it offers a frequency range of 76.0-90.0 MHz, a Signal ratio of 57dB (Stereo mode), and a THD of 0.50%. Concerning the AM-Tuner, it offers a frequency range of 522 kHz – 1629 kHz, a S/N ratio of 35dB and a THD of 1.5%. This Tuner will cost 160€.

Lastly, we have the speakers, the LS-H250, which offers a maximum power of 50W, with an impedance of 6Ω, a frequency response of 50Hz-20kHz, and a crossover frequency of 3kHz. The LS-H250 feature 130mm carbon woofer, and 25.4mm Tweeter. These speaker cost 105€ (Pair)


Sunday, August 17, 2008

Sunday Stories: Infiniti G37 Convertible

Infiniti G37 Convertible

In response to the Lexus SC430 and BMW 3 Series, Nissan’s luxury brand unveiled the new 2009 Infiniti G37 convertible. On this four seat edition that features a retractable hardtop, you’ll have 3.7L V6 developing 320 horses.

We have no further information at the moment, but Nissan will officially introduce their BMW 335i convertible competitor at the Los Angeles Auto Show this November.

Sunday Stories: Nissan Previews All-Around “Collision Free” Prototype

Nissan Previews All-Around “Collision Free” Prototype

Nissan Motor Co., Ltd has unveiled an All-Around Collision Free prototype incorporating two all-new technologies – Side Collision Prevention (SCP) and Back-up Collision Prevention (BCP). Incorporating the available Distance Control Assist (DCA) and Lane Departure Prevention (LDP) systems, this latest prototype vehicle further extends Nissan’s “Safety Shield” concept to help protect the vehicle and its occupants from potential risks coming from multiple directions.

Side Collision Prevention: When the driver decides to change lanes, the side-mounted sensors activate a warning if an approaching vehicle is detected in the driver’s intended lane. A yaw mechanism is then activated through brake control of individual wheels, to help prevent a potential collision.

Back-up Collision Prevention: During a reversing manoeuvre, rear and side-mounted sensors detect objects in the path of the vehicle. If an object is detected an alarm sounds followed by the activation of the brakes, to help avoid a collision in situations such as when a vehicle is backing out of a parking space.

The DCA helps maintain an adequate following distance, while the LDP helps to prevent the vehicle from veering off its designated driving lane. Both the DCA and LDP systems complement the SCP and BCP to create the All-Around Collision Free prototype. The warning system and pre-emptive safety features are designed to help support the driver in an intuitive manner with minimal intervention.

On a global level, Nissan is committed to building safer vehicles equipped with advanced safety technologies. In Japan, the company’s safety vision is to halve the number of traffic fatalities or serious injuries involving Nissan vehicles by 2015 compared with the level in 1995.

Friday, August 15, 2008

"The Sky Crawlers" LaVie G Notebook from NEC

"The Sky Crawlers" LaVie G Notebook from NEC

Since August 2nd, here in Japan we've had the pleasure of enjoying Mamoru Oshii's latest animation, The Sky Crawlers. NEC will release two new notebook LaVie G Type J in Black or White that displays one of the logos from this animation. Fans stress that this isn't the first time NEC has done this for The Sky Crawlers since you can buy online a LaVie G type C and Type L with the same logo.

Our LaVie G Type J feature a 12.1” LCD with a screen resolution of 1280x800, and is powered by an Intel Core 2 Duo U7600. Our PC also features a 120GB HDD, a DVD Super Multi Drive, 1.5GB of RAM, and weighs 1.254kg.


Thursday, August 14, 2008

DZ-BD10HA: Hitachi's New Full HD Camera

DZ-BD10HA: Hitachi's New Full HD Camera

CHULA VISTA, Calif.--Hitachi Home Electronics (America), Inc. continues to introduce state-of-the-art consumer electronics with its next-generation Blu-ray Disc Hybrid Camcorder with the ability to record onto the next generation HD format, Blu-ray.

A step above from its predecessor announced last year, the DZ-BD10HA from Hitachi’s Consumer Group contains several new features and improvements. A newly developed 7 mega pixel CMOS image sensor, which captures rich and vibrant videos and stills in FullHD (1920 x 1080) High Definition. The new DZ-BD10HA can also record up to 4 hours 20 minutes of 1920x1080 video or 8 hours 40 minutes of 1440x1080 video onto the built-in 30 GB HDD. Additionally, the built-in SDHC card slot provides added flexibility by allowing for Full HD video and still recordings.

The new DZ-BD10HA also offers a dubbing function that allows Full HD video to be transferred with the single push of a button from either the HDD or SDHC card to the BD drive, all within the camcorder, without having to connect to a PC. Editing functions such as split, splice, delete, merge, and transitions can also be performed within the camcorder before dubbing for additional functionality. The Transcoding feature allows for the camcorder to transfer full HD videos off the HDD or SDHC card to standard definition DVD discs for the sharing of videos with friends and family who may not own a Blu-ray player yet.

Another new feature added to this year’s camcorder is face detection, which automatically detects and focuses on faces to provide the most true to life color accuracy and clarity. Additionally, Hitachi has developed a compact, low power consumption, quiet and highly reliable 8cm BD/DVD drive, which results in a 20% reduction in overall volume compared with last year’s DZ-BD7HA Blu-ray hybrid camcorder.

“Hitachi is well known for having introduced the world’s first DVD camcorder, the world’s first Hybrid camcorder with a DVD drive and a Hard Disk Drive and the world’s first Blu-ray camcorder,” said Daniel Lee, Vice President of Marketing at Hitachi Home Electronics, America. “Hitachi continues to improve upon and deliver cutting-edge and innovative products, and is pleased to offer the latest upgrades in camcorder technology to its customers and consumers. The new DZ-BD10HA underscores Hitachi’s commitment to developing original technologies that consumers can easily embrace.”

While keeping the same core design as the previous Blu-ray camcorder, the DZ-BD10HA has several added features and an ameliorated design. These features include:

Three Format Hybrid Compatibility

This camcorder has the versatility of being able to record HD video onto three separate formats (Blu-ray Disc, Hard Drive, SDHC) and provides the flexibility and ease of playback and long recording time all in one camcorder.

7 Mega Pixel CMOS Image Sensor

The CMOS image sensor in this camcorder is designed to record the highest resolution video with effective 4.67 mega pixels while minimizing distortion and artifacts to ensure the most clear and vibrant high definition picture. The camcorder is also capable of capturing 6.22 mega pixel stills onto an optional SD or SDHC card.

One-Touch Dubbing

With the push of one button the user can transfer HD video from the SDHC card or hard drive to a Blu-ray disc all within the camcorder; this eliminates the need to turn on a computer.

Face Detection

This feature automatically detects and focuses on the face to provide true-to-life color accuracy and sharp picture quality to the user.

O.I.S. (Optical Image Stabilization)

O.I.S. automatically detects and cancels camera shake by accurately stabilizing the lens to produce the most sharp and vibrant picture possible.

Pricing and Availability

The Hitachi model DZ-BD10HA model Blu-ray Hybrid with built-in 30GB hard disk drive (HDD) is priced at a Manufacturers Advertised Price (MAP) of $999. The camcorder will be available in Japan on August 9th and will be available in North America in September 2008.


Hitachi Home Electronics (America), Inc., Consumer Group subsidiary of Hitachi America, Ltd., markets high-definition plasma and LCD flat panel televisions and monitors, as well as Blu-ray Disc™, DVD and HDD camcorders.

Hitachi has a unique position in the marketplace by manufacturing and developing its own core technologies to provide consumers and businesses with optimal product performance in each of Hitachi's product categories. For consumer products, please visit For Business products go to

Hitachi America, Ltd., a subsidiary of Hitachi, Ltd., markets and manufactures a broad range of electronics, computer systems and products, and provides industrial equipment and services throughout North America. For more information, visit

Hitachi, Ltd., (NYSE: HIT / TSE: 6501), headquartered in Tokyo, Japan, is a leading global electronics company with approximately 390,000 employees worldwide. Fiscal 2007 (ended March 31, 2008 ) consolidated revenues totaled 11,226 billion yen ($112.2 billion). The company offers a wide range of systems, products and services in market sectors including information systems, electronic devices, power and industrial systems, consumer products, materials, logistics and financial services. For more information on Hitachi, please visit the company's website at


Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Integra DTX-9.9 & DTX-8.9: Onkyo will never stop!

Integra DTX-9.9 & DTX-8.9: Onkyo will never stop!

Lastly, Onkyo announced the availability of their new AV Amplifier, the DTX-9.9 and DTX-8.9, for the beginning of September.
Our new “monsters”, provide almost the same specifications: a frequency response of 5Hz-100kHz (+1dB/-3dB, Direct Mode), a Signal Noise ratio of 110dB, 4 HDMI1.3 Input / 2 HDMI1.3 Output, the HQV Reon-VX video processor from Silicon Optix, the Imaging Science Foundation mode in order to enhance the image quality. It can also upscale your image to 1080p and can reproduce the latest audio codecs such as Dolby True HD, DTS-HD Master Audio….
But the DTX-9.9 provides a maximum output power of 280Watts x7 (6Ω), while the second one offers a power of 250Watts x 7 (6Ω).
The DTX-9.9 is also Windows Vista certified, features USB and Ethernet interface, can read MP3/WAV/WMA/AAC
It’s announced a price of 2180€ for the DTX-9.9, and 1555€ for the DTX-8.9.


LifeBook U2010 from Fujitsu

LifeBook U2010 from Fujitsu now official

Singapore, August 06, 2008 — Fujitsu PC Asia Pacific today proudly unveils the LifeBook U2010, the successor of the futuristic Ultra Mobile PC (UMPC), the LifeBook U1010, which won over many Fujitsu converts along with a host of worldwide accolades. Mobile professionals, glamazons and urbanites will be enchanted with the computing delights contained in this polished powerhouse and they will absolutely impress onlookers everywhere.

Mr. YS Ng, Senior Vice President, Sales and Marketing says, “Last year, Fujitsu made UMPC history with its landmark, feature-rich LifeBook U1010. Continuing in its unique 3-in-1 tablet/notebook/handheld PC tradition, the amazing LifeBook U2010 cements our triumph in this field as it replicates the ingenuity of the U1010 as well as accentuating its lifestyle features with an array of distinctive colours and wireless music on-demand – all while remaining fashionably small and powerfully compact.”

Ever wished you could listen to that favourite collection of songs you painstakingly uploaded from your personal CDs on your drive home? Well, the LifeBook U2010 comes with the technology to make this nice-to-have a reality with its ability to wirelessly connect to any FM radio and its audio output to play aloud your chart-toppers - in this case, straight from your notebook’s music library, using only your home entertainment system or even your car’s FM stereo system! Thanks to its nifty wireless music on-demand technology, the U2010 allows you to take charge of the atmosphere at any party and rev up the tempo to the beat of your play list straight off your UMPC, without the hassle of burning the songs to a CD first - how’s that for loving Mother Nature!

Every experience with the LifeBook U2010 will prove to be an enjoyable one with its high resolution SuperFine 5.6” WXGA 1280 x 800 screen with 300nits brightness. It even has a one-touch Raku Raku zoom button for optimal viewing. Available in Ocean Black, Pink Gold, Cool Silver, Fuchsia Red and Luminous Blue, the petite U2010 is simply a delight to have. And as for the glamazon who hops from one chillout spot to the next in her urban playground, the lightweight (610g) and multimedia-centric LifeBook U2010 accords her centre-stage by entirely meeting her entertainment and communication needs on a portable full-featured Windows Operating System with a built-in 1.3 Mega Pixel camera and digital microphone, making instant messaging and online chatting effortless.

To enhance your experience with this mobile companion, the finger-friendly Microsoft® Origami™ Experience 2.0 application(1) is made available with the LifeBook U2010 for quick touch access to your favourite multimedia programmes. With fully-optimised browsing features, your music, videos, photos, games will all be within easy reach, not to mention updating your blog and taking quick notes will be such a breeze.

The wonders of the LifeBook U2010 extend to busy professionals who need to be constantly on the go, making the long battery life of 8 hours(2) an absolute bonus. With wireless connectivity features and Bluetooth® v2.1 to minimise work downtime for business travelers on the go, it’s simply the perfect mobile companion. Moreover, this tablet-convertible UMPC’s generous storage space (up to 60GB or option of 64GB SSD) means that having big business files on hand for reference is not a problem at all.

In addition, let’s not forget that this petite PC in your palm swivels and turns over to double up as a handheld tablet PC that lets you scribble in short notes for automatic conversion to soft copy text – even when using your fingers! Of course, if time and inclination permits, who’s to stop you from engaging in some electronic sketching with your stylus? And to make sure this mini laptop doesn’t slide out of your grip and derail your artistic efforts, this LifeBook U2010 has a slip-resistant base.

Be it a business professional, glamazon or urbanite, everyone craves a longer battery life. Hence, the LifeBook U2010 comes prepared to meet this demand because it runs on the latest Intel® Centrino® Atom™ processor technology with Intel® Centrino® Atom™ processor Z530 (1.6GHz) and Intel® System Controller Hub, thus endowing it with lower power consumption properties. This means that you are more likely to reach your destination before your battery bails on you. Especially with an extended battery as backup, businessmen will also no doubt be grateful for the longer battery life since it means less hassle with wires since the charger stays in the office even as you don’t.

As with all Fujitsu PCs, this UMPC comes replete with a suite of security features that guarantees the confidentiality of your information. Ensuring that your confidential documents stay private is a 2-level BIOS lock and an Anti-Theft Lock Slot. In addition, the LifeBook U2010 has a Fingerprint Sensor which allows the encryption of sensitive files with a swipe of your pre-registered fingerprint since no password can be more secure than that of your own fingerprint!

Fujitsu remains firmly committed to the promotion of a cleaner environment and complies with the European Union’s Restriction of Hazardous Substances directive (RoHS) across its entire range of products. In addition, Fujitsu has established a set of commitments that goes beyond RoHS requirements, thus allowing it to stay keenly focused on its customers’ health and well-being as well as to embrace a healthier environment for all. By adopting a green factory concept and being committed to the cause of energy-efficient computing, Fujitsu also fights to sustain the Earth as a sponsor and a member of the Climate Savers Computing Initiative.


Sunday, August 10, 2008

Sunday Stories: Suzuki Maruti Alto

New Suzuki Maruti Alto

The 2008 Paris Motor Show will be held in October, and this morning Suzuki announced for the occasion their new compact urban car, the Maruti Alto.

Already sold widely in many countries (in Asia, India), the Maruti Alto will be with a doubt a nice competition for many European compact cars.

We haven't received any specifications yet from Suzuki, but we'll be sure to keep you updated during the 2008 Paris Motor Show.


Thursday, August 7, 2008

Sony ICD-B61 Voice Recorder

Sony intros new Entry-Level Voice recorder, the ICD-B61

Sony announced they will release new entry-level voice recorder on September 10th, the ICD-B61.It’s equipped with the minimum features, namely 512MB of internal memory, a built-in 28mm mono speaker, and provides a maximum output power of 250mW.
Thanks to this device you’ll be able to record around 301 hours. You can expect a price of 40€.


Wednesday, August 6, 2008

SB Series: Affordable New Full HD TV from Sharp?

SB Series: Affordable New Full HD TV from Sharp?

Sharp expanded its large screen SB LCD HDTV Series with this new entry-level, but affordable television. Our new line-up is available in 52" (LC-52SB55U), 46" (LC-46SB54U), and 42" (LC-42SB45U) screen size with a 1920x1080 resolution panel, and provides a response time of 6ms.

Our 1080p TVs also feature Sharp’s Spectral Contrast Engine, built-in ATSC/QAM/NTSC tuners, and HDMI interface (four available on the 52", two available on the 46", and three on the 42").

The 52" LCD TV will cost 1485€, the 46" version 1100€, and the 42" 900€.


Sunday, August 3, 2008

Sunday Stories: New Honda Jazz

New Honda Jazz

Honda's all-new Jazz is once again set to redefine the B-segment parameters of practicality and interior space. This 5-door hatchback will achieve class leading interior space and combine it with significantly improved fuel economy and 120 g/km CO2 emissions (1.4-litre i-SHIFT and 1.2-litre).

The exterior design is at first glance an evolution rather than a revolution, but this subtle change of appearance is only one small part of the thousands of changes that push the all-new Jazz forward. It retains the concepts of the previous Jazz with its center fuel tank layout and Magic Seats which gave it world beating interior flexibility. While the best features are retained, including cabin space to rival mid-sized saloons, the new Jazz brings change to every area, raising the bar even further and promising to expand on its success in the supermini segment. The previous generation was given more than fifty awards and has sold over two million around the world since its 2001 launch.

A slightly larger, ‘cab forward' style body brings better visibility and means Jazz is even more spacious, in particular benefiting rear legroom and boot space. The Magic Seats now dive down in one easy action, and their versatility is now complemented by a new double-trunk boot feature in the luggage bay.

There are greater levels of safety equipment including the introduction of Honda's Advanced Compatibility Engineering (ACE) body structure, active front seat head restraints, and VSA. Larger wheels, revised suspension, and a longer wheelbase/wider track bring greater agility while enhancing ride comfort. A new 90 PS 1.2-litre and 100 PS 1.4-litre i-VTEC engine delivers better performance characteristics while boosting economy to exceptional levels - 5.1 and 5.3 l/100 km combined, respectively. CO2 emissions for both the 1.2-litre and 1.4-litre engines have also been significantly reduced. The 1.2 litre engine now emits just 120g/km (down from 129g/km), while the 1.4 litre produces 123g/km in manual or 120g/km with the i-SHIFT transmission (down from 137g/km)

Greater economy and lower emission from two new engines

New, more powerful, petrol engines capable of outstanding economy, are designed to appeal to customers who might be downsizing as well as those looking to achieve fuel economy comparable to diesel powered models. Their balance between economy and lively performance are unmatched in this class. Adopting Honda's VTEC technology (Variable Valve Timing and Lift Electronic Control), the new 1.2 and 1.4-litre four-cylinder engines are connected to either a 5-speed manual transmission or, on 1.4 models, Honda's i-SHIFT 6-speed automated manual transmission that includes steering wheel-mounted paddle shifters.

Providing 90 PS, compared to the 78 PS of its predecessor at a slightly higher 6,000 rpm and torque up from 110 to 114 Nm for improved performance, the 1.2-litre engine nevertheless achieves 5.1 l/100km combined, down from 5.5 l/100km, while CO2 emissions are also improved, reduced from 129 to 120 g/km.

It is a similar story with the new 100 PS, 127 Nm 1.4-litre engine. Compared to the previous i-DSI unit which produced 83 PS and 119 Nm, fuel economy is now 5.3 l/100km for the manual model (down from 5.8 l/100km) and an even better 5.1 l/100km when equipped with the i-SHIFT semi-automated manual transmission (5.9 l/100km for the previous 1.4-litre CVT). CO2 output drops to 124 and 120 g/km, respectively (down from 137 and 139 g/km).

The new SIL (Shift Indicator Light) fitted to manual models, similar to that found on the new Accord, provides a visual prompt of the best gear shift points to maximize economy.


The 1.2 and 1.4-litre models are equipped with an evolution of the previous 5-speed manual transmission with gear ratios optimized for a more sporty driving experience while ensuring good fuel economy.

Key improvements include a revised clutch pedal stroke, carbon-type synchronizer on third gear to minimize shift load, crisper shifting through reduced clutch disc inertia, and improved refinement.

Manual transmission-equipped models feature the new SIL (Shift Indicator Light) within the centre of the rev counter, also found on the latest Honda Accord. Providing the driver with a visual prompt of the best gear shift points to maximize economy, it has been demonstrated to provide meaningful fuel economy improvements.

i-SHIFT (6-speed automated manual transmission)

As well as a 5-speed manual gearbox, the 1.4-litre engine can be teamed up with Honda's latest i-SHIFT transmission. The first time a 6-speed automated manual transmission has been offered in this vehicle class, the gearbox offers better fuel economy than is possible with either a true automatic or a CVT (continuously variable transmission).

The unit is a development of the system first fitted to the Civic, with improvements made including; reduced gear change times, smoother shifts and more intelligent automatic mode shift logic.

New cab forward styling and increased dimensions

At 3900 mm long, 1695 mm wide and 1525 mm tall, the new Jazz occupies its own unique niche between superminis and compact MPVs, offering the style of the former and the practicality of the latter.

Overall height remains the same, but the length of the new Jazz is up by 55 mm and it is also slightly wider - by 20 mm. A wheelbase increase of 50 mm, and front and rear track increases of 35 mm and 30 mm, respectively, aid handling stability.

Despite those increased dimensions, the turning circle at 9.8 m kerb to kerb is no larger than that of the previous Jazz and together with improved visibility, the new car's around town abilities are even better.

New ACE body structure

Even more efficient safety performance results from the introduction of the ACE (Advanced Compatibility Engineering) body structure, a concept that is being progressively rolled out across the Honda range. Its structure, in particular a front polygonal main frame, helps to reduce the negative effect of misalignment between vehicles of different sizes and construction and multiple energy absorbing pathways disperse impact energy to prevent cabin deformation.

Standard on all models are dual front and side airbags, full length side curtain airbags and three-point seatbelts in all five seating positions, those in the front with dual-stage pretensioners. The front passenger airbag can also be deactivated to allow a rear facing child seat to be fitted to the front seat and for the first time Jazz is equipped with seatbelt reminders for both the front and rear seats. Front seats are also fitted with active headrests to minimize the potential for whiplash injuries.

Two ISOFIX fittings in the left and right rear seats together with tether anchors in the roof ensure correct child seat installation.

Larger, more refined cabin with even better functionality

The ingenious interior layout of the original Jazz, with its compact suspension and centrally-mounted fuel tank liberating more load space, together with the increased external dimensions of the new model, mean interior comfort has been taken to a new level.

Rear seat passengers now have 37 mm greater knee room, while the distance between front and rear passengers is up by 30 mm. The slightly wider body also means shoulder room increases by 44 mm in the front and 43 mm in the rear.

Visibility gets a considerable boost, too. Reduced width A-pillars, a larger windscreen and quarter windows three times the size of those in the previous model make for more relaxed driving, while retractable rear headrests ensure the view out of the rear window is now totally unobscured.

Magic Seats now one-motion dive-down

Given the popularity of the previous Jazz's innovative ‘cinema' style rear seats, it comes as little surprise that Honda chose to offer a similar arrangement in the new car; but while the latest Magic Seats operate on the same principle, they are even more convenient since they have a one-motion, dive-down operation. No longer is there a need to move the front seats forward to collapse the rear seats. Instead, thanks to headrests that are virtually flush with the seat back, the 2:1 split rear seats are able to clear the front seats even when the latter are slid back to their rearmost position.

New Double-Trunk boot feature (1.4-litre models)

The outstanding practicality of the Magic Seats concept is complemented in the new Jazz by a flexible luggage area based on similar principles to the arrangement found in the Honda CR-V. Standard on 1.4 models, which are equipped with a tyre repair kit, the Double-Trunk boot features an underfloor storage area concealed by a double hinged panel - Regular Mode. The 230 mm deep, 64 litre capacity lower compartment is ideal for stashing sports gear or wet items, and once covered, won't soil other luggage.

The floor can be removed altogether or folded up against the rear seats to make full use of the total depth available - ideal for particularly tall objects (Tall Mode). Alternatively, rather than folding the complete panel against the seat backs, its rear half can be folded up to create a load shelf at half height - so creating a double load space - Upper/lower Mode. Heavier items can be stored below, while lighter items can be placed on the upper shelf, and since it incorporates a load net, is perfect for carrying awkwardly shaped items, preventing them from moving around.

Total luggage space available is 399 litres in models with a tyre repair kit, greater than that of some compact MPVs and class-leading in the supermini sector. The previous Jazz had a total of 380 litres (VDA).

Refined cabin environment

High quality, pleasant-to-the touch materials, stylish design, and tasteful colours give the cabin a more upmarket feel.

More comfortable front seats with better support, a driver's footrest, a height adjustable driver's seat, a steering wheel adjustable for reach and rake and larger rear seats are just some of the features that contribute to the more cosseting, more relaxed cabin environment. Extra sound insulation and the increased body rigidity also play their part in making the Jazz a pleasant place to be. For a real sense of spaciousness, the Jazz 1.4 EX is equipped with a panorama roof that extends over the rear seats for a great aerial view. Heat absorbing glass and a power sun shade ensure a comfortable cabin environment all year round.


Sunday Stories: Mazda6-Atenza GH-03 by Autoexe

Mazda6-Atenza GH-03 by Autoexe

Japanese tuner Autoexe, that works its magic only on Mazdas, just revealed its Mazda6-Atenza body and performance kit. The GH-03 Complete Car.

With a nice and aggressive body kit, Autoexe mainly changed the front bumper of our “6” and gave our car a new set of side skirts and elegant 18” wheels from RAYS.

As for the performance kit, Autoexe provides a new set of “6” brakes, low down springs, muffler, member brace set, sports stabilizer, street or sport brake pads, and Ram air intake system


Saturday, August 2, 2008

Two New Hitachi Cinemastar DVR Hard Drives

Two New Hitachi Cinemastar DVR Hard Drives

Hitachi has introduced two new 3.5" & 2.5" Cinemastar HDDs optimized for use in digital video recorders. Our new HDDs are available in 1TB (the 7K1000.B) and 320GB versions (the 5K320). So why did Hitachi say they're developed for DVRs?

Because the 7200rpm HDD (7K1000.B) stores up to 247 hours of HD video and supports more than 10 simultaneous data streams. It’s a very quiet hard disc that can run in continuous operation 24x7.

No word on price, but Hitachi announced they’ll begin shiping the 7K1000.B in August.

SAN JOSE, Calif. – July 30, 2008 – Hitachi Global Storage Technologies (Hitachi) today introduced two new CinemaStar™ hard drives optimized for use in digital video recorders (DVRs) and set-top boxes. The CinemaStar™ 7K1000.B is available in a broad range of capacities up to one terabyte (1TB) and the CinemaStar 5K320 delivers up to 320GB of capacity and incorporates innovative Hitachi CoolSpin™ technology.

CoolSpin drives use a motor speed optimized for low power and acoustics, enabling Hitachi to deliver the industry’s quietest, most energy-efficient 3.5-inch hard drives. Hitachi CoolSpin enables a new generation of DVRs and set-top boxes that store more hours of video, run more quietly and use less power.

The new Hitachi CinemaStar drives include the following:

Drive mechanics designed for continuous 24x7 operation

Silent-seek acoustics for nearly inaudible operation

Three low-power idle modes for best-in-class power utilization and heat emission

Smart Command Transport (SCT) and SmoothStream technology optimizes the drive for uninterrupted audio and video streaming

Expanded temperature range to enable fan-free DVR designs

Ramp load/unload design to increase shock protection and power savings

Thermal monitoring and fly-height control to enhance drive reliability during lengthy video encoding/decoding sessions

Optional Bulk Data Encryption (BDE) for increased protection against data loss

Proven perpendicular magnetic recording (PMR) technology helps to ensure maximum stability, reliability and data integrity

CinemaStar 7K1000.B

The CinemaStar 7K1000.B is based on the recently-introduced, second-generation Hitachi 7,200 RPM terabyte hard drive family. The new 3.5-inch drives, available in capacities ranging from 160GB to 1TB, leverage seven generations of power management technology to deliver best-in-class low power and thermal emissions. Hitachi used HiVERT technology, first pioneered on 2.5-inch Travelstar drives, to increase the power efficiency characteristics of the drive. The CinemaStar 7K1000.B enables device manufacturers to develop DVRs that run cooler and require less power, which ultimately leads to longer product life.

All CinemaStar products are enhanced with silent-seek acoustics to deliver bedroom-quiet operation, and a Hitachi patented load/unload ramp mechanism that helps prevent disk wear and protects the disk during non-operation. The CinemaStar 7K1000.B is also built using the industry’s most reliable perpendicular magnetic recording (PMR) technology for maximum stability, reliability and data integrity.

1TB CinemaStar hard drives can hold up to 247 hours of MPEG-4 encoded high definition video1 and can support more than 10 simultaneous data streams.

CinemaStar 5K320

The CinemaStar 5K320 provides up to 320GB capacity and features innovative CoolSpin technology to deliver a new level of power efficiency and quiet operation for digital video applications. Key to CoolSpin technology is an optimization of motor speed to provide an ideal balance of performance, power utilization and acoustics.

Both CinemaStar drives announced today combine a targeted 1.2M hour Mean Time Between Failure (MTBF)3 and extended operating temperature range to maximize DVR lifespan. At 3.1W idle power, the CinemaStar 5K320 helps meet low power compliance targets for consumer electronics devices and allow consumers to save on their energy costs.

The digital video recorder market continues to experience robust growth. IDC estimates that shipments of hard drives for personal video recording applications will grow at a 14% annual growth rate between 2007-20122.

“Hitachi has been making dramatic improvements in power savings generation to generation and our CoolSpin product line in particular, sets new standards for power-efficient audio/visual hard drives,” said Larry Swezey, director, Consumer and Commercial HDD Marketing and Strategy, Hitachi Global Storage Technologies. “The Hitachi CinemaStar drives are designed to excel in DVR and set-top box applications, where cool operation, quiet acoustics and overall power efficiency are of critical importance.”


The CinemaStar 7K1000.B will begin shipping to customers worldwide in August and the CinemaStar 5K320 is expected to ship in September, 2008.


PMX-M80: Stylish New PMP from Sony

PMX-M80: Stylish New PMP from Sony

According to PMP Today, Sony has introduced a nice, new PMP, the MPX-M80. Our device features the Map Browser Suite, a 4.3’’, 480x272 LCD touchscreen, 16GB of internal memory, memory stick slot, and built-in microphone. It supports MP4/AVI/WMA/MP3 and AAC formats.

You know what? It’s only available in China at an expected price of 210€!!!


Friday, August 1, 2008

First Official Pictures of LG's BD300 Blu-Ray Player

First Official Pictures of LG's BD300 Blu-Ray Player

Yesterday we introduced the first Blu-Ray player for instant Netflix streaming movies. Today, Gizmodo has the first pictures of it. According to Gizmodo, the case is slim and shouldn’t take up any more space than a normal player.


Fuji FinePix S2000HD

FujiFilm introduced its FinePix S2000HD, a new Digital Camera with HD Video recording

According to several websites, Fujifilm introduced its S2000HD Digital Camera on the Canadian website. Our new device features a Wide angle zoom Lens (15x), a 10 Megapixel 1/2.3-Inch CCD Sensor, a 2.7-Inch LCD screen, an ISO sensitivity up to 6400.Our S2000HD can also record HD video in 720p and features face detection, dual image stabilization…
We don’t have any information on the release Date, but it should cost around 180€.