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Issue No.03 - May/June (2008 vol.28)
pp: 104, 103
Published by the IEEE Computer Society
Ed Zintel , Staff editor
ABSTRACT
Department editor Dave Kasik highlights some of the new computer graphics tools and products on the market. In this issue the featured tools and products are a wireless mini trackball keyboard from Adesso, a distribution amplifier from Gefen, a super fast DVD burner from Samsung, an upgrade for photoshop connections from Strata, and a software line for video on-the-go from Pinnacle.
Hardware
Wireless Mini Trackball Keyboard
Adesso announced the WKB-3000, a 2.4 GHz RF wireless mini keyboard with optical trackball. It features a streamlined RF keyboard, built-in trackball, and 360-degree navigation.
The WKB-3000's long-range 2.4 GHz wireless connectivity lets users work up to 100 feet away from the USB receiver connected to the computer. The lightweight keyboard offers mobility and comfort, and a notebook keyboard module supports handheld operation to enable easy typing when a desktop isn't available.
The integrated trackball with 800-dots-per-inch resolution provides great accuracy with minimal hand movement to take the place of a traditional mouse. "Hot keys" let you take control of the your desktop with one-touch access to some of your most common tasks such as e-mail, volume control, and launching your Web browser.


The WKB-3000 frees the keyboard from the PC. Hardware

The WKB-3000 price is $79.99. For more information visit http://www.adesso.com.
Distribution Amplifier
Gefen announced a new rack mountable distribution amplifier that splits the high-definition multimedia interface (HDMI) audio/video signal and sends it to 10 displays, each supporting high definition video to 1080 pixels.
Ideal for digital signage, presentation, education, and entertainment applications, the Gefen 1:10 Distribution Amplifier delivers both video and audio signals for a true HDTV viewing experience.
The amplifier works with all HDMI sources including games, satellite television systems, and HD DVD players. When combined with a Gefen HDMI DVI Audio Adapter, the amplifier will support DVI displays, delivering both HD video in DVI format with separate digital audio in TOSlink format.
This distribution amplifier, which is fully compliant with the HDCP (High-bandwidth Digital Content Protection) standard, offers simple installation that requires the connection of your HDMI source to the input using the six-foot HDMI cable provided. The distribution amplifier's 10 outputs can be used in part or full, connecting 10 HDMI displays. One 24-volt power supply drives the system, ensuring the simultaneous delivery of HD visuals and digital audio with no delay, providing a pure visual performance unimpeded by distortion.
The Gefen 1:10 Distribution Amplifier retails for $649. For more information visit http://www.gefen.com.
Super Fast DVD Burner
Samsung announced what it says is the "world's fastest DVD burner": the Super-WriteMaster SH-S203N.
The SH-S203N is a 20x Serial Advanced Technology Advancement (SATA) DVD burner that has 16x dual-layer recording capabilities (the industry recording standard is 10x to 12x) and supports all CD/DVD discs including DVD-RAM. The burner can back up 8.4 Gbytes of data or video to disc, and the dual-layer recording speed offers a 30–40 percent improvement in recording time for dual-layer drives.
The drive features LightScribe technology that lets users engrave labels, photos, and designs onto CDs and DVDs. The drive's label-making software is preloaded with designs and labels for users who choose not to create their own labels.
With its SATA interface, the drive eliminates the need for master/slave jumper settings and provides thinner data cables, improving airflow and cable routing.
The SH-S203N's LightScribe technology lets you record your data—music, photos, or text—then turn the disc over to imprint the chosen label, design, or photo onto the disc.
The SH-S203N LightScribe's price is $79.99. For more information visit http://www.samsung.com.
Software
Upgrades for Photoshop Connections
Strata announced version 5.5 of Strata 3D CX. This new version includes Strata's 3D technology and provides workflow for designers, illustrators, and 3D professionals who are also using Adobe Photoshop CS3 Extended.
The Strata 3D CX v5.5 upgrade adds several "connect to Photoshop" features and other important enhancements to the venerable 3D application. Working in concert with these new Strata 3D CX features, the upgrade also includes six new plug-in capabilities for Photoshop CS3 Extended for connecting to Strata 3D CX v5.5.
3D designers using Strata 3D CX v5.5 can model new objects or modify existing objects with an array of professional modeling tools such as Subdivision Surface modeling, Booleans, Align to Path, and Deformation. They can send 3D content directly into Photoshop CS3 Extended and match the perspective of Photoshop images. Users can also compose final scenes, set up sophisticated lighting using high dynamic range images, and generate soft shadows, reflected light, and refractive materials.
For more information visit http://www.strata.com.
Video On-the-Go
Pinnacle announced a software line that offers a fast and easy way for consumers to enjoy video on-the-go. The Pinnacle Mobile Media Converter and Pinnacle Mobile Media Organizer lets consumers take advantage of their digital video content on popular mobile devices, such as the Sony PSP and Apple video iPods.
The Pinnacle Mobile Media Converter uses a simple three-step process for transferring video files to the Apple video iPod and the Sony PSP.
The Pinnacle Mobile Media Organizer is an all-in-one software for viewing, managing, and moving videos, photos, and music to popular mobile devices. Users can drag and drop their media onto their mobile device of choice. The organizer also includes tools such as tag editors, smart play lists, personal ratings, and the ability to burn videos and music directly to CDs and DVDs in high-quality MPEG-2 and DivX formats.
Prices begin at $29 for Pinnacle Mobile Media Converter and $49 for Pinnacle Mobile Media Organizer. For more information visit http://www.pinnaclesys.com.
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