Archive for the ‘Video & Graphics Card’ Category

3D home projector from ViewSonic

Friday, February 13th, 2009

3D is poised to become the next big thing in home entertainment and movies.  Keeping up with the trend, ViewSonic announced the new 3D ready PJD6220-3D home projector at CES in early January. This projector has been designed using the native XGA resolution that has the ability to accept HD video input to nearly 1080i and computer input to nearly SXGA+. The projector is rated at 2200 ANSI lumens with contrast ratio of 2500:1.

According to ViewSonic spokesperson, the PJD6220-3D projector shares most of the features with their other PJD6220 but with one addition. The JD6220-3D has the 3D feature, much similar to the Texas Instruments 3D DLP engine. The other great and perhaps the most noteworthy feature of the PJD6220-3D projector is its affordable price.

The fact that the PJD6220 is priced reasonably makes it an ideal purchase for the movie buff. This projector gives clear and sharp image displays in any type of environment. The projector has been designed using technology that produces more clarity of images and enhances the vibrancy of colors.  However it essentially works the same way as the 3D technology used in IMAX theaters and in the vie theaters that have 3D capable projectors. It is believed that there are some 1,500 theaters in the US alone that have 3D DLP digital projectors. In order to create stereoscopic or ED images the right and left eye should see slightly different images from different viewpoints. Today the most common approach that is used by ViewSonic projector is to combine alternating images for the right and left eye with glasses built around the LCD shutters. These glasses allow for synchronization with the projector so that either of the eyes would see only the images that are meant for it. This synchronization is basically maintained by either using infrared light produced by additional hardware near the screen or by pluses of light over the screen that is produced by the projector.

The two video frames provided with the ViewSonic PJD6220 3D projector for image synchronization ‘meet’ at the projector in succession. Thereafter, the 3D engine divides them both into a checkerboard pattern giving them a four-framed appearance. The ViewSonic projector weighs only 6.6 pounds and thus, comes with the added advantage of portability. This projector can easily be mounted n tables or ceilings thus making it most suitable for corporate a well as classroom environments. The projector has been enabled with RJ- 45 remote network control. Apart from the 3D ready feature the PJD6220 3D projector from ViewSonic also offers stereo audio with 10-watt output quality and 1.1 to 1 optical zoom. Perhaps the most unique feature of the ViewSonic is that it has close captioning that makes it usable for those with hearing impairments. The PJD6220 is expected to be shipped in the month of February 2009.

Gateway FHD2401 LCD monitor

Friday, February 13th, 2009

The Gateway FHD2401 is clearly designed with multimedia and gaming in mind with its bright 24 inch LCD that offers wide scale colour technology with a fast pixel response time and picture-in-picture and HD viewing capabilities. Although the display is mainly targeted at multimedia and gamers the business users would also appreciate its capabilities to display small text.

The Gateway FHD2401 is designed with an excellent black cabinet including some glossy black bezel on the sides with some stunning brushed aluminum panel at the bottom. Its 1,920 by 1,200 screen is designed by solver rectangular stand which provides backward and forward tilt positioning, but it’s only adjustability. There are touch sensitive menu and power buttons towards the right hand bezel and they are both illuminated by blue backlighting. When touched the menu light would activate an extra set of buttons which let you navigate the on screen menus. The menu settings also let you choose from the seven themes which provide you optimized colour temperature settings for some specific applications like movie, games, web, cool, warm, web, pictures and user defined.

The picture-in-picture feature when activated lets you view content from a secondary input source like from Blu-ray player or TV tuner box in a separate window. You can even toggle between the three input sources where you can adjust scaling properties and image sharpness. The monitor comes with Portrait display with EzTuner software through which you can manually make image adjustments through your mouse and keyboard. The EzTuner also includes a user friendly colour calibration tool that helps achieve finest colour reproduction.

At the back of the monitor are VGA, DVI and HDMI connectors but this is all what you can get in connectivity options. The Gateway FHD2401 monitor also does not include integrated speakers but there are options to attach DTSS-2410 speaker bar to the bottom bezel. The best thing is that the monitor offers 2 millisecond pixel respond as it was able to display 3D games and videos without any noticeable smearing. Although most of the users found it a bit dark with light grays when playing game these flaws don’t seem to affect the colour quality. The panel uses wide gamut technology to display around 92 percent of NTSC colour spectrum offering bright and bold colours which also appear uniformed throughout the scale. Additionally small text quality was also fine as the font 4.3 seemed petty clear and readable.

Gateway also claims there are 160 degree viewing angles in both the vertical and horizontal planes, but most of the users found colour shifting at nearly 150 degrees when viewing from both sides. However when you connect the Gateway FHD2401 to a cable box through HMDI to watch videos or play games in high definition you will surely be impressed with its overall image clarity and its colour quality. Therefore if wide viewing angles and grayscale accuracy are the key factors you need in a monitor then the Gateway FHD2401 is the perfect 24 inch monitor you can find.

NVIDIA enhances graphics performance on notebooks

Wednesday, January 14th, 2009

NVIDIA had a look on increasing popularity of ‘netbooks’ and drew the conclusion that something is missing- quality of visual performance demanded by users within the developed market. Hence, graphics chip-makers got set to have worked on constructing the Ion hardware platform with respect to tiny form-factor desktops and notebooks constructed on Atom processors of Intel. Moreover, early returns have suggested that such a thing can be one of the category killers.

ChannelWeb saw ‘Ion’ in action at NVIDIA’s headquarters on 15th of December, 2008. Its platform comprises of a motherboard (atom-based), paired with GeForce 9400 onboard graphics processor, complete CUDA support, and ridiculous quantity of I/O.

Team of NVIDIA demonstrated Ion within an ultra-small ‘desktop reference design’. This Ion is better known as ‘nettop’. However, platform has also been built for ‘mobile PCs’. The small desktop that was seen fitted in palm (of one hand). Moreover, it was just a ‘mess’ of ports. It wasn’t the slimmest-looking device. However, it was handy, as far as showing off graphics support was concerned and acceleration that was built by NVIDIA in to Ion.

NVIDIA went on to run the demo for making the product look better. However, results of neck-to-neck competition between standard netbook (atom-based) and Ion nettop with GMA 950 integrated graphics of Intel were spectacular. NVIDIA moved ahead with having fired up ‘Call of Duty 4′ without even a hitch; while Intel netbook went on to struggle to even have booted ‘visually rich’ PC game. Ion system also boasted of better video playback; thanks to ‘full-spec’ 1080p badaboom and HD video support, GPU-tapping ‘video Transco ding accelerator (from Elemental Technologies).

NVIDIA, already having its ‘GeForce 9400 GPUs’ within recent line of ‘Apple MacBooks’, has said that it has expected Ion-based netbooks to be priced at around $50 greater than present systems based on GMA 950. For extra cash, sixteen ‘graphics processing cores’ can be obtained by users, which deliver fifty-two Gflops of ‘processing power’, which seems to be a compelling story, at least from the perspective of the reviewers.

ChannelWeb has been quite bearish with regards to netbooks, in spite of hype and hooplah created about these products. That is basically due to the fact that it is being heard from retailers, resellers, and OEMs about extremely large numbers of ‘netbooks’ that’re being returned by purchasers, especially in markets of North America.

As said by sources, reason behind returns is that the users within mature markets might get fascinated by promise and price of notebooks, and might get completely disappointed with shortcomings of the same while getting them back home. Graphics shortcomings are the largest ones amongst factors of disappointment. These days, users, business travelers and commuters in particular wish to have quality playback on computing devices operating at the primary level.

As an outcome, makers of netbooks have, in certain cases, gone ahead with the amendment of their wild-eyed, earlier promotions of novel category. For instance- HP now markets HP mini-Note PCs in the form of complementary device of computing (not the primary one).

Vista security flaw exposed by ATI driver

Monday, January 12th, 2009

One of the unpatched flaw within the drivers, that too, from ATI goes on to create a means for smuggling malware-past improved ‘security defences’ in new-fangled Windows version and in to Vista Kernel. Right now, Microsoft is found working with ‘ATI’ with regards to an update that, as warned by the security watchers might not be that entire straight forward for rolling-out.

The presence of security-flaw within driver of ATI is reported to have come to light following the release of POC, i.e. proof-of-concept tool known as Purple Pill by Alex lonescu, a developer, which is said to have created a simplified way of loading and unloading unsigned, i.e. potentially malicious drivers with regards to Vista. Utility of this type has circumvented novel anti-rootkit defences that were constructed in to Vista by having turned off checks concerned with signed drivers.

Lonescu went on to pull utility hours (after release) after having realized that ATI driver flaw Purple is still left out, in terms of patching. Lonescu had picked this fact up during a presentation conducted by Joanna Rutkowska, a ‘Vista Kernel Expert’.

For the people who have no knowledge about ATI, let it be made clear that Purple Pill’s functionality is identical to Atsiv, i.e. a tool solely designed by Linchpin Labs, a developer of Australian origin. This design was considered to be a portion of research project concerned with driver signing. The response of Microsoft to Atsiv’s creation was by having revoked its certificate as well as classifying its utility in the form of ‘malware’, much to chagrin of ‘Linchpin Labs’. Technocrats would be surprised to know that Atsiv has gotten evolved in to a project which permits legacy hardware’s users to have used their kit with regards to Vista, that too, without any of the signed drivers.

Having followed an identical approach for ‘Purple Pill’ is not straight forward as mentioned above as such a thing piggybacks on the security certificate for hardware driver which has been installed in 50% of laptops.

As per the opinion of Ollie Whitehouse, one of the security researchers at Symantec, the above-mentioned situation can make just anyone associated with Microsoft start to weep. ATI would have to obtain a novel certificate, move ahead with signing fixed versions regarding the affected drivers, and release them through Windows Update. Just then Microsoft would get VeriSign for revoking the ‘signing certificate’.

All these things highlight broader problems in Vista’s code-signing. Atsiv has showed that getting an age-old code signed is very simple. As per the illustration of Purple Pill, signed drivers also have bugs. Symantec goes on to reckon design error occurring in driver of ATI as one of the ‘short-cuts’ designed for making the procedure of software development much more straightforward than ever before. Now, you can go on to imagine that such a thing has come about owing to one of the requirements for extending the core driver with many arbitrary modules with respect to design of ATI.