Our bad! When we put up our Apple TV Unboxing Gallery, maybe you would have appreciated it if we actually let you know it was there. So, here we are to redeem ourselves, with what we think is a not-too-shabby look at the Apple TV unboxing experience. If you are curious about what comes in the box (not much, really) as well as what is lacking (video cables?), you may find our gallery of some use to yourself. Once again Apple has done a fantastic job of making a device possibly feel more special than it is simply by the way they packaged it—although, with their failure to pack in any sort of video cable, be it digital or analog, they managed to also make you feel like something is missing at the same time. See for yourself in our Apple TV unboxing gallery.
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We were able to get a first-hand look at the new AMD LIVE! Digital Home Cinema concept while hanging out with the AMD crew. For those who may have missed it at CES, the AMD LIVE! Home Cinema is pretty much a specialized HTPC that aims to replace just about everything in your entertainment center, save for game consoles. It can run Linux or Windows Media Center, and is even a digital cable tuner that is CableCARD compatible. Powered by an AMD Athlon 64 X2 dual-core processor, it aims to provide an immersive theater-quality media experience with high-definition video, integrated 100 watt per channel surround sound audio and Internet capability, all in a device fit for your entertainment center. Check the video for a full walk-through.
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Seems everyone wants to get into the business of streaming content both from the Internet and from your home network, to your television. Of course, we are of the opinion that in as little as ten years time, this will be the way most television entertainment is consumed in the first place, so it only makes sense that companies start getting on the ball now. AMD recently gave us a look and demo of their Active TV softwawre. This aims to bridge the gap between video and other content found on your home computer, along with that found on the Internet.
We caught up with Intel where we got the lowdown on the Viiv platform along with the latest Viiv-based PCs. For a definition on what Viiv is, we go to Wikipedia:
Viiv is a platform marketing initiative from Intel. Like Intel’s Centrino and vPro, Viiv is a computer platform certification for a particular combination of Intel products as its primary components. It is an open specification for an Intel-based Media Center PC. Specifically, Viiv is a particular combination of CPU, mainboard chipset, software, Digital Rights Management and network card. It is intended for primary use as an in-home media and desktop platform with the ability to operate as a normal PC or as a hardware media player/centre - running applications, playing DVDs, CDs, MP3, photographs and games as well as subscription based (partially DRM protected) content such as ILoveFilm, Napster and SKY.
So, if you want to hop on board with the next-generation of computing devices specifically targeted towards multimedia in a living room environment, check the video to get all the details from Intel.
We know the HD DVD vs. Blu-Ray war is going hot and heavy, and LG looks to capitalize on that with their BH-100 hybrid Blu-ray HD DVD player. If you don’t get it yet, this bad boy can play just about any optical media you can throw at it, supporting DVDs, Blu-ray discs, and HD DVD content as well. Price is a bit steep at $1199 USD, but true videophiles may not even notice when they realize that, for them, the format war no longer exists. The LG Super Multi Blue BH-100 Player officially hits retail stores today, despite being available in small quantities for a little over a week now.
We stopped by the Neuros room at CES and spoke with Joe Born about the Neuros OSD. This is the open source, Linux-based media center device that is starting to pick up and is generating a strong community of developers looking to use it to create the best media center device out there. It will be hitting the market soon, and based on what we saw, we think this one will be a viable alternative to some of the more stagnant media receivers out there. Check the video to find out why.
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