Format War! Game on!


Okay I picked up a BluRay player (Samsung BD-P1000), programmed my Harmony remote (they already know about it) and bought a few BluRay titles. Future Shop seems to have rather high prices on BluRay discs at the moment, as I was able to get a few titles in the states last week for quite a discount. So far everything is okay, except that I had to make a tough decision. I had to connect the BluRay player to the DVI input on the TV and drop the HD-PVR back down to component video. I’d forgotten how weird “The 5th Element” was…

HD Beat

Found a not-bad HD site.
HD Beat
seems to be an HD news site, which also has a podcast.

I haven’t listened (watched?) the podcast yet, so I can’t tell you if it’s any good.
Feel free to leave a comment saying if it’s good/bad.

The RSS feed for HDBeat is an excellent full-text feed with images.
Highly recommended.

Hm, all the weblogs blogs I’ve seen so far have these hi-fidelity feeds.
Must be a (very good) corporate policy.

Tokyo Drift

A rotten tomatoes rating of 5/10. Learn some Japanese, lose the liberalism and get ready for some pounding J-pop, screeching tires and short skirts. Wahoo. Plot spoiler: They plunked a big-honkin’ Nissan engine into a Mustang. Hm, was there something else in the plot? I guess I’ve forgotten. Incidentally at the moment, I drive a car with a 345hp Nissan engine with an electronically variable cam, DVC off-switch and the Tokyo Drift soundtrack in the CD tray …but it’s missing the Japanese version of the Carpenter’s “Top of the World” that played in the movie. Speaking of which, I also have “Audio Slave’s” “Doesn’t Remind Me” in there, with the lyric “I walk the streets of Japan ’till I get lost, because it doesn’t remind me of anything”. At least the physics was a lot better than F&F2.

This is the correct review of the movie: LA Times

For the fashion-conservatives among you, the Sanja Milkovic Hays-designed miniskirts deserve special attention from the censorship board. But it’s not exactly Clockwork Orange, I guess.

Did I mention I hated Lost In Translation recently?

Swinging Towards Sony..

(Some info copied from my ReidNews post)

Friday night I had a chance to compare Iain’s, Jeff’s and Vartan’s cameras.
I got their details, plus those of Debbie’s camera.

 Panasonic DMC-LX1K  8.4 Mpx  $500 US @ J&R, good flash  Iain
 Panasonic DMC-FX01  6.0 Mpx  $300 US @ J&R, $400 CA @ Aden   Jeff
 Canon PowerShot SD550   7.1 Mpx  $330 US @ J&R  Debbie
 Sony CyberShot DSC-W7  7.2 Mpx   discontinued, excellent flash  Vartan

Vartan’s Sony DSC-W7 is no longer available, so I searched on for similar models;
I also threw in the Canon PowerShot S80, which seems to be the high-end point-and-shoot for Canon.
Cameras are sorted by descending price:

 Canon PowerShot S80  8.0 Mpx   $500 US @ J&R 
 Sony CyberShot DSC-N1  8.1 Mpx   $400 US @ J&R 
 Sony CyberShot DSC-W100   8.1 Mpx   $330 US @ J&R 
 Sony CyberShot DSC-W70  7.0 Mpx   $300 US @ J&R,
$367 CA @ TigerDirect 

Jeff says that Aden Camera is a good place for buying cameras in town,
but the price difference is overwhelmingly in favour of online purchase, despite the warrantee issues.

Comparing the flash pictures taken by the three cameras, I was most impressed with Vartan’s.
So, since Vartan’s camera seems so impressive, the Sony DSC-W70 looks interesting.
The DSC-W100 even moreso. The DSC-N1 is super-cool, but has no viewfinder at all.
A failing shared by Iain’s Panasonic.

Update 2006-06-14: rejiggered the table to show the same info better, adding links right in the table to J&R pages.

A Challenge


A number of people in my family are looking at getting HD TVs. Asked for advice but knowing very little about the different options, Laura and I took to the web–which came up geeky. Very technical, hard to interpret without a fair depth of knowledge.

So I turn to the Tech Tok crew with this request: Time for something for the layman. Explain the basic concepts without heavy jargon, and lead us as close as we can go into an apples to apple comparison of DLP, plasma and LCD screens. I probably missed one or two right there. Set me straight.

I reckon it will be interesting: Reid says that you don’t even own the same types of monitors. All the better for explaining why. compare and contrast.

Reid also suggested that this might be kindled with a specific question or two, so here goes: Which type produces the best picture from a non-HD source?

Bonus question (suggested by Reid, I don’t even know this much): What the hell is an ATSC tuner?

Go to it! The web needs this resource!

HD DVD on sale at Wal-Mart

Apollo 13 HD DVD

I saw this on sale at Wal-Mart last night.
Actually, there were several others on sale as well.
I couldn’t resist buying one.
One day I expect to have a combo HD/Blu-Ray player.
But until then I won’t be able to play this disc.

I thought that this would be one of the one-side-HD-the-other-side-DVD discs, but no luck there.

posted pictures on Flickr
of the case, the disc, etc, so enjoy.