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Monthly Archives: November 2010

AAXA Updates Their L1 Laser Pico Projector

AAXA L1 Laser Pico Projector v2 (Image courtesy AAXA Technologies)
By Andrew Liszewski

We only just posted our review of AAXA Technologies’ L1 Laser Pico Projector back in July, but already the company is introducing a 2nd version. If you missed our review of the V1, we pretty much summed it up as being the pico projector to beat not only because the laser light source produced vibrant, saturated colors, but the image was always in focus so you never had to worry about adjusting some wheel or slider every time you moved it.

Now the V2 doesn’t do much to improve the V1 when it comes to tech specs, it still kicks out 20 lumens at a resolution of 800×600, but the company has apparently improved the “thermal efficiency of the PCOS laser light engine.” On one hand it unfortunately means the L1 V2 is actually just a bit thicker than its predecessor, but on the other it also results in a price drop of $200 since the V2 now sells for $399.99, compared to the $599.99 price tag of the V1. Still not exactly an impulse buy, but it’s nice to see how quickly the prices are dropping with this technology.

[ AAXA L1 V2 Laser Pico Projector ]

Build Your Own R/C Enterprise Zeppelin

By Chris Scott Barr

Do you like Star Trek and have a fascination with do-it-yourself projects? Then I’ve got just the thing for you. It’s an R/C Starship Enterprise Zeppelin. That’s right, this baby actually flies! Granted, it might not be the most perfect replica of the famed ship, but it does bear a striking resemblance to the one seen in the original TV series.

It’s not going to take a rocket scientist to get this project off the ground, but you might not want to tackle this if you’ve not messed around with R/C devices before. Thankfully, there are detailed instructions over at Instructables, so if you’re feeling adventurous, you can craft one for yourself.

[ Instructables ] VIA [ GeekAlerts ]

Keychain Friendly USB Equipped Backup Battery

Portable USB Power Supply (Image courtesy ThinkGeek)
By Andrew Liszewski

It’s not going to provide all of your power needs during a major outage, but in a pinch I’m sure this compact, rechargeable 1,000mAh backup battery will come in quite handy if your cellphone or MP3 player is on the verge of conking out, and you have no access to an outlet. Now claiming this thing is keychain-sized is a bit of a stretch, you can’t just slap a metal ring on any old thing and expect people to cram it in their pockets. But it is compact enough to stash in a carry-on bag, glove compartment or murse if you think your devices won’t last as long as you need them to.

In terms of size it looks pretty comparable to Duracell’s Instant USB Charger that I reviewed last October and deemed a must-have accessory, but at just $19.99 this alternative from ThinkGeek is actually $10 cheaper. And it comes with everything you’ll need including USB cables and charging tips for Nokia, Samsung, SE and Blackberry phones.

[ Portable USB Power Supply ]

Deal Of The Day: $1,200 Off On LG INFINIA 55-inch 3D-Ready LED HDTV

By David Ponce

I was hearing a bunch of stuff on the radio about Black Friday. You do know it’s just around the corner, right? So yeah, retailers promising to open their doors at midnight, Friday the 26th. Sears and another store I can’t remember were even going to start the Black Friday stuff… on Thanksgiving Thursday! All this sounds to me a like a good stampede in the making!

Why bother, guys and girls, when you can be saving truckloads online? I mean, look at this particular deal. The LG INFINIA 55LX9500 is a fancy 55-inch, 480Hz, 3D-Ready, LED HDTV. It’s usually pretty expensive, at $3,900 or so. After today’s deal though (which consists of $700 off, plus a $500 coupon), you’re looking at a $2,700 set. Still a good chunk of change, but to sweeten the deal, you get a bunch of extras: “1 LG BX580 Network 3D Blu-ray Disc Player + four LG AG-S100 Active Shutter 3D Glasses + 1 HDMI v1.4 Kit.”

The LG INFINIA 55LX9500 55″ 3D-Ready LED-Backlit LCD HDTV features a built-in 3D upconverting processor, 1920×1080 (1080p) resolution, 480Hz refresh rate, 10,000,000:1 dynamic contrast ratio, NetCast Entertainment Access, WiFi, Ethernet, four HDMI inputs, and much more.

[ $1,200 Off On LG INFINIA 55-inch 3D-Ready LED HDTV ] VIA [ LogicBuy ]

Gel Gem Christmas Lights Are Easy To Install

Gel Gem Christmas Lights (Image courtesy Solutions)
By Andrew Liszewski

There’s a lot of crap and hard work that comes along with the holidays, so in order to remain in that festive spirit you need to cut corners wherever possible. Instead of decorating a tree I usually just leave my ornaments organized by color in a plastic container in my closet for all my other plastic containers to enjoy (I’m very giving that way) and instead of putting up lights in my windows, I’m switching to these illuminated Gel Gems this year.

I’m sure everyone has seen these Gel Gems things before, they look like flat pieces of Jello that you stick to your windows to celebrate various holidays, and now they come with built-in LED lights. So instead of having to find some way to mount a string of lights around a window frame (which does lead to some level of fun when you break out the old staple gun) you can just stick these directly onto the glass. They’re powered by a small battery pack so you don’t even need to worry about overloading the nearest power outlet, and a set of 6 is available from Solutions for $14.95.

[ Gel Gem Christmas Lights ]

Anti Sleep Pilot

Anti Sleep Pilot (Image courtesy Anti Sleep Pilot)
By Andrew Liszewski

While it’s already available for sale in Denmark, the Anti Sleep Pilot, which is a device that takes a more pro-active approach when monitoring for driver fatigue, is coming soon to the U.S. where drivers are typically in their cars for longer periods of time. Instead of being something you wear that detects the bobbing motion of your head, meaning you’re already falling asleep, the ASP attaches to the dashboard of your car and constantly records its motion, looking for erratic movements that may indicate you’re more tired than you think you are. It also performs simple random tests requiring you to touch the device, and based on how long it takes you to comply it can determine your alertness. (The tests also serve to break up the monotony of driving.)

Based on all the data it collects the Anti Sleep Pilot will then let you know, via a set of colored lights, whether you’re in a good condition to keep driving (green of course) or when you better pull over and take a break (red) before you fall asleep at the wheel. The English version of the ASP website doesn’t list a price for the device just yet, but the Danish version has it listed for $1,499kr or ~$270.

[ Anti Sleep Pilot ] VIA [ Chip Chick ]

Cricut Cake Prints Deliciousness

Cricut Cake (Image courtesy Provo Craft & Novelty)
By Andrew Liszewski

If you’ve never seen the original Cricut before, it’s essentially a printer that features a cutting head instead of ink cartridges. So when you feed a piece of paper through, your ‘printed’ design gets cut out of the page. For those who aren’t so hot with an X-Acto knife it’s the perfect craft tool, and as my brother has discovered, it’s completely hackable letting you create any designs you want instead of being limited to the cartridges the company sells.

Well the Cricut Cake is essentially the same thing, except that instead of paper it will cut through soft food materials like frosting sheets, fondant, cookie dough, tortillas, cheese, modeling chocolate and even soft candies. So if you’ve a history of ruining birthdays or other get-togethers with horribly decorated cakes, you can now turn the tide and impress everyone by just hitting print. Of course easy never comes cheap, so the Cricut Cake comes with a $399.99 price tag, though I’m assuming it’s as hackable as the paper version so once again you’re not necessarily limited to the cartridges they sell.

[ Cricut Cake ] VIA [ 7Gadgets ]

Flash Rods Cram 500GB Inside A DeLorean

Flash Rods DeLorean (Image courtesy Flash Rods)
By Andrew Liszewski

A company called Flash Rods adds 4GB of flash storage to Hot Wheels sized die-cast cars, but they also retro-fit those fancy 1:18 scale model vehicles with larger hard drives. So in keeping with today’s unofficial Back To The Future theme, here’s their DeLorean model which adds 500GB of storage to the time machine as it appeared in the third movie of the trilogy.

The addition of the hard drive leaves no visible modifications to the car itself, except for a USB port on the back where you’d normally find the ‘OUTATIME’ plates. At $250 it’s actually pretty steep for just 500GB of storage, even including the price of the car, but I don’t think you’re ever going to find a more appropriate drive for use with OS X’s Time Machine feature.

[ Flash Rods – BTTF DeLorean ] VIA [ Everything USB ]

Netflix Introduces Streaming-Only Plan In The US

By Chris Scott Barr

I’ve had a Netflix subscription for years. However, after their streaming service became worthwhile, I stopped caring about getting DVDs anymore. I’ve stopped watching them altogether. Once in a while I’ll start to feel bad, and send in a movie that I’ve yet to watch, just so it can be of use to someone else. What I’ve really been waiting for is a streaming-only option.

Netflix has finally decided to offer a streaming-only plan for customers in the US. The plan will get you unlimited streaming to your computer or TV. The monthly cost will be $8, which is $2 cheaper than the cheapest DVD plan that also included unlimited streaming.

What’s that, the cheapest plan with unlimited streaming is only $9? Not anymore. In addition to rolling out the new streaming-only plan, they’ve decided to raise the price for this plan, likely to encourage people to switch to streaming. Now instead of $9, you’ll need to cough up $10 a month if you want to have your cake and eat it too.

[ Netflix ]