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.
We talk to IOGEAR about their soon-to-be-released GHDMIAS2 HDMI switcher. What’s so special about it? It automatically senses which device is sending a video signal, and therefore automatically switches to that signal so that you don’t have to reach for the remote. It also has a manual override button in case you want to switch to the other input on your own. Lastly, it’s an HDMI 1.3 switcher and supports 1080p, so you know that you will be getting the latest goodness. This one will be available at the end of the first quarter 2007 for $149.99 USD. Good enough for us!
Okay, forget all the corporate-speak we have been getting on the issue. We went around and ask people wandering the floor at CES which format they liked and thought would win out in the end. We got quite a few interesting responses, many of which seeming to come from people who don’t even know that a format war even exists.