June 30, 2008

Costco TV Price Check

I went to the local Costco just now and jotted down these prices.

Panasonic THC42FD18 42 inch Plasma 1080p - $1299.99 - same as April
THC42HD18 42 inch Plasma 720 - $999.99 - up $50 from April

Sony KDL40WL135 40 inch LCD 1080p 120hz - $1799.99
KDL46WL135 46 inch LCD 1080p 120hz - $2199.99 - down $300 from April
KDL52WL135 52 inch LCD 1080p 120hz - $2799.99 - down $200 from April

Samsung LN46A540 46 inch LCD 1080p - $1699.99

The Panasonic plasmas had a refresh and pricing has stayed flat or has gone up a little since April. The high-end Sony LCDs came down in price. Overall it looks like LCD pricing hasn't moved much in the last few months. I do not follow Vizio as the quality of those panels are pretty inferior. This is coming from experience. - Discuss

June 28, 2008

Diablo III Trailer

June 15, 2008

iPhone 3G Specs, Details, and Final Thoughts

The 3G iPhone will be launched on July 11th, 2008.  Here are the specs:

-4.5x2.4x0.48 inches weighing in at 4.7 ounces
-8GB of flash memory in Black, 16GB versions come in white or black
-3G UMTS/HSPDA speeds.  It is also compatible with GSM/EDGE in areas that don't have 3G (outside most major cities)
-Builtin GPS chip, Wifi 802.11b/g, and Bluetooth 2.0_EDR compatible
-same 2.0 megapixel cammera
-480x320 3.5 inch Multi-touch widescreen display

Differences from iPhone 1.0.  It will not come with a dock.  It also won't have the sleek metal back.  The headphone jack will not be recessed, so you can use your normal headphones. The pricing will be $199 for 8GB with a 2 year contract and $299 for the 16GB version.  Although this may look $200 cheaper than the old iPhone, you will be in fact paying $40 more over a 2 year timeframe as the 3G data plan costs $10 more per month ($10 x 24 months = $240).

It looks like other than the 3G speed upgrade (roughly 2X faster), the new iPhone isn't much improved.  It uses the same processor.  I was hopping for a front-facing camera with video conference over iChat as that would of been a killer app, but it looks like that wasn't meant to be.  One wonders if AT&T put the kabosh on that idea as it would overload their new 3G network and possibly cut into voice revenue.  The only reason I can imagine iChat isn't available yet on the iPhone is AT&T protecting its SMS texting revenue.

I can't believe we still don't have copy/paste functionality and the ability to sync a memopad/notepad notes onto the iPhone from a PC.  Apple what are you thinking?

June 14, 2008

Sennheiser PC-166 Pro Gaming Headset with Microphone Review

I recently bought the Sennheiser PC-166 headset from B&H for $89.50. It replaces an old plastic Plantronics headset that hurt my ears and had pretty weak microphone that fellow Skypers said made me sound like a high-pitched cartoon character.

Fear not, the Sennheiser restored my manliness over Skype as the same friends said the sound comes across much better and clearer. It is also much more comfortable to wear during those long VOIP conversations and Counterstrike gaming sessions. Moreover the sound quality through the USB digital interface and the better "speaker cans" is head and shoulders above my old headset. Every nuance and detail comes across beautifully in music and sound effects. Highly recommended. It's worth the premium price if you Skype often and play a lot of games that need a microphone/headset functionality. - Discuss