Microsoft and Intel to Back HD-DVD Format

Filed Under: Home Theater News, Media - Movies - Games

hd dvd backed by intel and microsoft
Microsoft and Intel are throwing their full weight behind one side in the long-running battle over the format for the next generation of high-definition DVD’s.

Tuesday the two companies will announce that they are backing the HD-DVD format developed by Toshiba over the Blu-ray standard championed by Sony, Matsushita Electric, Samsung and others. Microsoft announced in June that it would work with Toshiba to develop high-definition DVD players. Now, Microsoft and Intel say they will develop software and chips that will allow personal computers to play the next-generation DVD’s from Toshiba.

The companies said they had not ruled out
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Da-Lite Designer Contour Screens

Filed Under: Projector Screens

da-lite contour electrol
More CEDIA coverage by Audioholics (Thanks guys! now get your your AH meeting… hic)

Da-Lite has easily installed electric screens that maintain stiffness. We all hate that limp noodle feeling, especially on our HT screen, right? Here’s Da-Lite to save the day.

Matt Teevan showed us a slick motorized screen that, unlike many competitor screens, maintained excellent stiffness when fully extended. This is definitely a solution to check out if you wish to hide away the screen while not in use. Best of all its relatively easy to install, even for non techies.

Da-Lite Designer Contour Screens – CEDIA coverage by AudioHolics

Da-Lite Countour Electrol at Da-Lite’s Website

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Xbox 360 Launch Date Released

Filed Under: HD Gaming, Home Theater News

xbox 360 released
Finally, we get the word on the release date – November 22, 2005. Let the gamers’ rejoicing begin. Microsoft seem to really be aiming for the Japanese market, and this announcement comes on the eve of Tokyo Game Show 2005.

Xbox 360 will arrive on store shelves Tuesday, November 22 in North America, Friday, December 2 in Europe, and Saturday, December 10 in Japan.

This marks the first time a game console will be launched in 3 regions at roughly the same time.
Some lucky Tokyo Game Show goers get to see some great titles firsthand, like:

Bomberman — Act Zero (Hudson Soft Co. Ltd.)
Call of Duty 2 (Activision Inc.)
Dead Rising (Capcom)
Dynasty Warriors 5 Special (Koei Co. Ltd.)
FINAL FANTASY XI (Square Enix Co. Ltd.)
Gears of War (Microsoft Game Studios)
Kameo: Elements of Power (Microsoft Game Studios)
Need for Speed Most Wanted (Electronic Arts)
Project Gotham Racing 3 (Microsoft Game Studios)
Resident Evil 5 (Capcom)
Ridge Racer 6 (Namco)
Sonic the Hedgehog (Sega)
Saint’s Row (THQ)
Test Drive Unlimited (Atari Inc.)
Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter (Ubisoft Entertainment)

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MTV to be in HD – I Want My MTV-HD!

Filed Under: HDTV Local, Cable, Satellite, Home Theater News

Wow, maybe MTV can get back to showing actual Music Video!
mtv to be in HD

MTV Networks is to launch its first all-high-definition network, MHD, on January 16, although no carriage agreements have been announced yet. The network will feature an array of music genres – rock, country and hip-hop – with programming taken from MTV as well as MTV2, VH1 and CMT.

And even CMT – Yeehaw! 😉

As concert films rather than music videos are traditionally shot in HD, a large portion of MHD’s schedule will be filled with concert acquisitions and repurposed series, including MTV Unplugged, the MTV Video Music Awards and VH1 Storytellers.

Please guys, no more reality shows, we beg you…



Ghost Recon 3 Advanced Warfighter – New Screens

Filed Under: HD Gaming

ghost recon GR3 advanced warfighter
I came across some new screenshots today of the XBOX 360 release title, Ghost Recon 3 Advanced Warfighter. These shots are the best I’ve seen yet, the older ones always seemed fuzzy or blurry for whatever reason.

The GR series has been one of may favs ever since the first one was released. There is just something about sneaking around with high powered weapons and killing those little brown… errr I mean liberating those poor terrorists!

New ScreenShots

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Radio Shack HDTV Tuner STB Clearance

Filed Under: HDTV Local, Cable, Satellite

radio shack 16-3499 hdtv tuner
There are still a rare few of these tuners left at various Rat Shacks, for $90.

Radio Shack 16-3499, the Accurain HST 6000

480p -720p – 1080i outputs

Some people are reporting a few problems with tuning certain stations, but what do you expect for hdtv tuning for 90 bucks.

Check your local RS for availability – call them, their website is not accurate for this product’s stock. I also advise asking about the return policy in case you have a problem with it.

Radio Shack Product Link

AVS Forum Thread

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Mirage Projector Screen – More Info

Filed Under: Home Theater News, Projector Screens

mirage screen for front projectors

We’ve got more info from CEDIA about the mirage projector screen that works well with lots of ambient light.

If you haven’t heard about this material, it could be the Front Projector Cave Dwellers’ dream come true.

“The manufacturer claims 10x higher contrast ratios than standard front projection screens and 2x the brightness.”

The screen features:

Support for all optical front projection formats (LCD/DLP/LCoS)
Capability to have projection in brightly lit rooms
10x higher contrast (in ambient light) than standard front screens
2x brighter images
50 customer frame options
Screen sizes from 60″ – 100″ (4:3) or 60″ – 120″ (16:9) in 1″ increments

Shipping will probably bite your wallet, as the screen must ship as a full sheet – it’s very think and can’t be rolled up.

These screens should be available in November.

I can’t wait! This should be a very wife-friendly purchase. “Just think Babe, you can knit beside me while I watch the big screen!”

Audioholics source

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Epson Home Theater Front Projectors – from CEDIA

Filed Under: Front Projectors, Home Theater News

epson powerlite cinema 550

More coverage by Audioholics at CEDIA:

3 new home theater front projectors from Epson.

For the entry level HT Dude:
Epson PowerLite Home 20
480p native
estimated street price at a grand
1000:1 contrast ratio
1,200 ANSI lumens
comes with its own 80″ portable pull-up screen!

for Mid-Level HT Dudes:
Epson PowerLite Cinema 550
720p native
$2,499 “minimum retail price”
3000:1 contrast ratio
1,400 ANSI lumens
HDMI connections
cinema filter

And Epson’s top of the line:
Epson PowerLite Cinema 800
takes the Cinema 550 and adds:
5000:1 contrast ratio
1,600 ANSI lumens
10-bit color
ISF-certified calibration
and will have a minimu retail of $4500

All of these machines are 16:9 native and should be available in October.

Epson Home Theater Front Projectors

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Toshiba HD DVD Update

Filed Under: Media - Movies - Games

Toshiba will start shipping their HD DVD player the first quarter of 2006 with or without a commitment from the studios to provide content.

‘Bout time. Being a professional procrastinator myself, I must say better now (or then) than never.

Marketspeak on HD-DVD media pricing:

When asked about software price, the manufacturer’s representative also indicated that there would be a “small monetary premium” over standard DVD prices.

Hmmm, small by whose definition? Anyway, I can’t wait for this format to take off, and I’m sure you can’t either.


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Cuddlebag – Great Home Theater Seating

Filed Under: Misc - Other

cuddlebag HT seating
These huge bean-bag sofas look like they could be some seriously comfortable HT seating. Bags are available up to 8 feet in length and come in 9 different colors. Not too pricey either.

Imagine your friends coming over – “That’s a SEAT?” But when they fall into it…

Better yet, next time your wife just wants to “cuddle,” say sure Babe! And flip on the front projector…

Cuddlebag Furniture

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