Archive for the ‘CD/DVD drive’ Category

Sony DVDirect – converts your old VHS tapes

Wednesday, April 8th, 2009

The analog technology has moved entirely to digital and you might be a bit worried with your huge VHS collection. Additionally purchasing sand running the capture card and also finding out how to use them on your computer to convert your tapes to digital files can also be complicated. However Sony offers you a great alternative by offering their DVDirect VRD-MC5 which offers an excellent method to convert all your VHS collection to DVD format with jut a click. Additionally you can even do this without using your PS and you can even watch what is being recorded on the 2.5 inch LCD screen of the device.

However when you see the DVDirect for the first time you might not know what it does as it does not look like the traditional external optical drive. It incorporates a flat design like a DVD player. Sony has actually made the screen bigger by an inch to make it similar in size to their VRD-MC1, but the screen quality of the VRD-MC5 is comparatively much better. The buttons are placed very conveniently with a big red button to record videos or photos. There are arrow keys to help in navigating the menu and you also have to stop button for self-explanatory.

The VRD-MC5 makes an excellent tool to capture videos from your camcorder but its main function is to convert your old VHS tapes into digital or DVD format. You will just require an AV cable in either yellow, white or red to connect the device to a VCR. After hitting the play button on the VCR the DVDirect VRD-MC5 would automatically stream the included videos on its screen. You can stop or record the streaming at any point. Additionally you can also set an automatic timer through its menu. This process is the same like that in a camcorder but you might have to purchase an additional cable to transfer the data. The DVDirect also supports excellent high definition camcorders like Sony HDV 1080i and HDR-HC3 hyndycam. However the device does not support other formats of HD camcorders.

Its selection menu includes several other functions compared to the previous one which means that is plenty to do to enhance your DVD experience. You will first have to choose the right mode from the 5 different quality recording modes which range from the recording time that starts from one hour to nearly six hours in SLP. To maximize the DVD space without compromising the video quality you can just use the SP mode. Sony has added 4 new basic titles menus in different styles and colours that you choose from but you cannot add any special effect, transitions or something fancy. However the company has removed the capability of DVDrict to connect to a USB printer or PC as like it previously did, and you also cannot use any external USB DVD burner for the computer. You only have the USB port through which you can only connect a USB camcorder. However there are 3 multimedia card slots which can support memory stick , CompactFlash, xD, SD, MS and Duo formats.

Lenovo ThinkPad X301 Review

Thursday, January 22nd, 2009

If you are familiar with the ThinkPad X300 of last year then there are very few surprises with the new X301 as it is just a Centrino 2 update. The new Lenovo ThinkPad X301 features the same carbon and glass fiber but is would survive a sales drop with its solid state disk. However like all the ThinkPads the system features a dual pointing system which includes joystick and trackpad with right and left mouse buttons for both side and also a middle mouse bottom. However the trackpad of Lenovo is not very satisfying regardless of how high you set its sensitivity.

The keyboard of this system is an effort of evolution which makes it one of the best keyboards to be used on laptops. Through the heritage of IBM, Lenovo has advanced it down to something which offers both a fast speed typing pad with pleasing travel pack. However users might find one annoyance with the F1 key which is moved towards the left in place of Esc key which is above the F1 key, but the keyboard shortcuts users might probably scowl as they constantly hit the F3 rather than F2. Beign a business laptop the shortcut buttons are sparse that include volume down and up, mute button and ThinkVantage buttons. The webcam and the fingerprint reader are fairly standard features but a feather that X301 has over Apple’s MacBook and R600 of Toshiba is its stereo speakers and also includes a great resolution.

The Lenovo ThinkPad X301 is a business based vista OS laptop that includes an Intel Core 2 duo processor that is clocked at 1.4GHz, 64GB, 2GB of RAM, which is although just Intel Integrated graphics that is only from a few things that MacBook has over this laptop. However the ThinkPad X301 is an upgrade to 64-bit vista if you need to upgrade to 4GB of RAM. The DVD+-RW drive is very pleasing which can be turned off to save battery life or even replaced with a secondary battery if needed. The laptop also features gigabit Ethernet connection with 5300AGB wireless adapter of Intel. The screen quality is acceptable but not great although it has a higher resolution than most of the 13.3 inch laptop screens. There are three USB ports designed in X301 one on the rear and two on the left but the lacking of eSATA can be a problem for several users.

You can also turn off the network location manager of Lenovo that pops up annoyingly when you make a new network connection. However the included notification software can also be annoying and the update manager of Lenovo might frequently error out or the servers might fall offline. However the best thing about Lenovo ThinkPad X301 is that it is light and easily portable which features a higher resolution screen. Although the Lenovo ThinkPad X301 is an improved notebook in an old chassis, it still has outstanding features that are not still used by Toshiba and Apple. However the only downside users might notice is its very short battery life but if you need an ultra-portable notebook then X301 makes a perfect choice for you.