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This story was printed from CdrInfo.com,
located at http://www.cdrinfo.com.
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Appeared on: Friday, March 17, 2006
CeBIT 2006


1. Introduction

CeBIT 2006

 
 
Index:
  City of Hannover (Images Gallery)
    Page2Page3

Various Companies and booths


Main Sponsors
 

2. NEC

Revelations on the HD DVD Technology by NEC

CDRinfo was invited to a meeting with Product Manager Ralf Dajek and Chief Engineer Ryoichi Hayatsu at NEC's booth at CeBIT where they kindly responded to inquiries that would interest both professionals and end users regarding the HD DVD format.

Our two CDRinfo reporters attended a private demonstration of an HD DVD burning session using the HD-1100 model (on display above), a recently developed optical disc burner that can write to HD-DVD discs. The NEC HD-1100 is the first HD DVD-/DVD-/CD burner for PCs, expected to be released on the market at Christmas. NEC is aiming for a price tag of around €499, although it may be difficult to initially keep the price this low. The media used was single-sided, capable of storing up to 15GB of data. The drive is also compatible with dual-layer discs (30GB).

NEC was shooting a high-definition video each morning at the show and burning it onto a disc, for demonstration purposes.

Above, Mr Ryoichi Hayatsu, NEC Chief Engineer exclusively filmed a short video of our two journalists and burned the high-definition content on a high-definition Verbatim (MKM) disc in the HD DVD format.

The burning software used by NEC, is a special version of Cyberlink Power2Go 5.

At the demonstration, the blank media was burned at 1X (4.5 MByte/s), but NEC announced that the final version of this drive will deliver 2X burning speed. The blank media, which only became available days before Cebit began, is single-sided disc (15GB capacity), from MKM Verbatim.

The four media companies that are currently collaborating with NEC to produce media, are MKM/Verbatim, Ricoh, Maxell and Taiyo Yuden.

As we can see above, the recorded MPEG-2 video file was encoded at 25.10Mbps, a bit rate high enough to be considered as "High Definition".

NEC is also working on support for rewritable HD-DVD media although the standardization for HD DVD Rewritable (HD DVD-RE) has yet to be completed. This is expected to be finalized in May or June this year. Issues such as region and copy restrictions have also not been finalised. Mr Hayatsu expressed the opinion that the best solution would be to have no region restrictions (i.e. Region Free), but if this was not feasible, then to impose a region restriction scheme the same as that currently in place with DVD movies, basically to make it easier for users. As for AACS support, currently the drive is 0.9 compliant but since this does not address the issue of backups/copying, it would be up to content providers to implement their own backup policies until a full protection implementation is finalised for both the European and USA regions.

NEC also showcased their HD DVD ROM drives at its booth.

In the picture above you can see the HR-2100 HD DVD combo reader. It delivers all functions of a DVD Multi Model and HD DVD-ROM Model this is why it is called a "Combo Model".

The NEC HR-1100A DVD seen in the picture above, plays HD-DVDs as well as DVDs and CDs. HD DVD media is read at 2x speed. DVD minus and DVD plus media can be read at up to 8x DVD speed, as well as rewritable and dual-layer DVDs. It can also read DVD-RAM at 5x speed. The HR-1100 should be available at the end of March for OEM offers, who can integrate it in complete PC Systems, says NEC. The company does not have any plans to sell the drive using its own retail package for now.

The agreement between NEC and Sony for their optical storage joint venture should be finalized on April 3rd. When questionned by CDRinfo on the possibility of whether NEC will produce a combo device (i.e. HD DVD and Blu-ray), Mr Hayatsu said that this was not feasible at the moment as the price would be too high. Once costs come down (especially for the blue laser diode, when failure ratio in production drops) a drive at a competitive price could eventually offered. In the meantime, Sony will keep producing its BD products and NEC its HD DVD. With current DVD devices, Production, Lite-On will still be used to keep up capacity. Sony will produce optical pickup. HD DVD will probably be quicker to market.

NEC is still waiting for the major film studios to provide them with their last requirements. The first HD DVD films will be released in the U.S without any regional coding and that would be more convenient for NEC if the same situation would apply for Europe also. According to Mr. Hayatsu, the best option for consumers would be region free HD DVD media and it would also accomodate their company, but that is unlikely since Hollywood prefers regional coding to better control the copyright and the market and avoids pirating losses.

The second best option for NEC, would be to keep the current system, adds Mr. Darek. Another major issue is the broadcasting networks which is yet to be finalized.

Mr. Hayatsu disclosed that even though the AACS copy protection agreement has not been finalized, some key points have been defined which permit the production and launch of the first HD DVD technology on the market. Consumers won't have to change their products if they purchased them earlier even once the AACS agreement is finalized, revealed Mr. Hayatsu.

Both NEC executives believe in the effectiveness of the upcoming AACS copy protection scheme. They believe it will be more reliable then the previous DVD CCS protection. Mr. Hayatsu explained that because of the fact that this new system has 1000 keys if they uncover a problem with one of the keys they will have the ability to block this particular one.

 

 

 

Main Sponsors
 

3. Blue Ray

CeBIT Blu-ray Press Conference Details

At the Blu-ray press conference at CeBIT, in Hannover on Thursday, three main Blu-ray heavyweight supporters spoke to the crowd about the current situation and the advantages of the next-generation format they chose to adopt.

Frank Simonis, marketing manager of Philips optical storage was proud to announce that Blu-ray's board of directors now totaled 17 members, including Warner Bros. He also added that the next-generation Blu-ray format is also backed by 140 brand names and 175 members-contributors, which shows, according to Mr. Simonis, that support has increased since last year's CeBIT show.

Mr Simonis also compared the Blu-ray format with that of HD-DVD in terms of storage, trying to convince the companies and journalists of BD's superiority. He emphasized the importance of the high capacity offered by the Blu-ray format, compared with HD DVD. He claimed that the provided high capacities, which will reach 50GB with double layer discs, would allow storage of high definition content featuring higher bitrates and thus, better picture quality. Compared to HD DVD, the BD-ROM disc is able to offer a 47% higher transfer rate (54Mbps), while in the case of BD-RE /R (2x) media, the maximum transfer rate reaches 72Mbps. Note, that the maximum bit rate for an AV stream is 48Mbps.

In addition, Mr Simonis claimed that the BD-ROM video disc is able to hold both HD video and HD audio more efficiently, compared to the HD DVD solution. For example, a 194 min HD video movie can be stored on a BD-ROM disc at a bit rate of 20Mbps (MPEG 2), allowing HD audio (LPCM 5.12ch, Dolby Digital etc) to be also stored on the disc.

Mr Simonis concluded his speech by expressing his belief, that the Blu-ray recorders/players will dominate the Western European market in the next 2-3 years. Samsung and Panasonic are expected to launch their first BD recorders and players next August.

Sony also plans to launch desktop and laptop PCs with Blu-ray Disc drives, in the middle of this year. The first computers to feature Blu-ray Disc drives will be high-end models aimed at multimedia use, but over time the technology will trickle down to other models, said Tasuku Yazaki, General Manager of Sony's Vaio product planning department.

"The machines will be launched worldwide at around the same time", he said, without revealing product details. Mr Yazaki also emphasized Sony's approach to HD video capturing, editing and streaming through the home network.

Philipe Coppen of Pioneer's optical storage division, again emphasized the fact that the high capacity and transfer rates provided by the Blu-ray format, offer a lot of potential. Mr Coppen said that apart from the long recording time offered by the Blu-ray solution, recorders will offer high speed dubbing from a HDD recorder to a BD-R/RE disc.

Mr Coppen also presented Pioneer's upcoming BD recorder for PCs, the BDR-101A (AACS enabled). The drive will support writing on single layer BD-R and BD-RW discs, DVD-R/+R (SL and DL) and DVD-RW/+RW. In the reading category, the BDR-101A will additionally read BD-ROM (SL and DL) and DVD-ROM discs, including DVD-Video. Pioneer's next generation drive (BDR-102A) will possibly offer playback and recording of BD-R/RE DL, DVD-RAM and CD-R/RW media.

The BDR-101A will possibly come with SATA, e-SATA, and USB interfaces.

Moreover, the BDA spokesman said that the production of the first double layer BD-ROM has begun in experimental product lines.

This year's BDA conference did not unveil any exciting news, and the BDA representatives did not give clear answers about some pertinent issues related to the format, such as the AACS content protection schemes and the so-called "Managed Copy" issue, which would allow consumers to back up their BD-ROM video titles for use on another machine, such as a portable playback device. The currently available interim licensing for the copy protection system that will be used to protect high-definition Blu-ray formats, does not include many of the advanced features of the AACS specification such as "Managed Copy". The release of the still-incomplete interim specification enables hardware manufacturers to begin making Blu-ray devices as soon as April 2006, although most of them are expected to be available as soon as the final standard will be released later this year, possibly before August 2006. The final specs will likely include the more compelling features promised for Blu-ray.

When questioned on the copy protection issue, Mr Frank Simonis responded by saying that the AACS is not controlled by Blu-ray. He did not mention if consumers would have to switch to new products once this issue was be solved. However, he confirmed that the next-generation optical disc format will incorporate the interim version of the copy-protection technology.

The BD will ship with the format's BD+ and ROMmark security systems - both of which come in addition to AACS. BD+ allows the BDA to update at a future date the Blu-ray encryption keys should they be cracked or made public. ROMmark is essentially a 'genuine disc' stamp encoded on each BD disc as it comes out of a pressing machine.

Hardware availability

The BDA representatives also avoided unveiling the exact release dates for their hardware. Philips said it would launch Blu-ray players and writers in the second half of the year, while Samsung Electronics showed off what it called the first commercial player, to be launched for US$1,000 in May in the United States.

 

 

Matsushita, which sells its products under the Panasonic and JVC brands, said its new Blu-ray players would be priced somewhere between Samsung's and feature-rich models from the likes of Pioneer at prices above US$1,500.

Fujifilm announced that its Blu-ray discs will be available in spring of 2006. They will deliver 25GB storage capacities in recordable and rewritable formats, which can be used in drives with 1-2X writing speed.

Philips said that its BDP 9000 home entertainment player, seen in the picture above, will be available in middle of 2006.

The Triple Writer model, the SPD 7000 (picture above) will be available in Europe and in America in the second half of 2006 also.

Toshiba said it would include an HD DVD drive in its most expensive laptop, which doubles as a high-definition television receiver. The company has already announced it will launch HD DVD players this month, with prices starting at US$499.

The Blu-ray group brushed aside suggestions that the opposing camp could tip the balance with lower prices.

"When DVD was launched, there was an array of products sold from $500 to $1,000. Oddly enough, the product that was sold at $1,000 had over 35 percent of the market share, and the one that was $499 had about 5 percent," said Blu-ray spokesman Frank Simonis.

"If you want a 35-inch screen and a true Dolby Digital solution, you have invested much more than the price of the playback device," he added.

Fujitsu-Siemens said that new drives would mainly be targeted at home-cinema enthusiasts in the beginning. The drives would cost around €400 (US$480) or thereabouts.

LG's European president, James Kim, expects the market to start slowly. "It will be only in a few products (PCs). The product has not yet hit the sweet spot," Kim said, referring to low prices, which are needed to convince cost-conscious computer makers to include a Blu-ray optical drive in their products.

The BDA indicated the format's European launch timeframe will be formally announced after Blu-ray's US launch in May. This despite comments from Samsung, Panasonic and others that they will ship BD players to Europe next Autumn.

 

 

 

 

 

Main Sponsors
 

4. SONY

Sony's Revelations on Blu-ray

The major announcement made by Sony's European division at CeBIT, in Hannover this year is indubitably the launch of its Blu-ray discs in Europe this March.

In a private meeting with some of the major Sony Europe executives at CeBIT, CDRinfo questioned them on the eventuality of a combo drive through Sony's agreements with companies supporting HD DVD such as NEC. Product manager Mathew Swinney, responded that no commitments had been made and that eventually the market will decide the future of the leading next-generation format and of the direction Sony will choose to follow.

Sony does not consider the launch of combo drives viable yet, although it might be developed eventually if the production and retail prices are reasonable, says Masahiro Toyama, Senior Marketing Manager.

CDRinfo then made an inquiry on the AACS copy protection to which Mr Clemens Schuette, Sony Europe's Communications Manager, answered that this issue will take time to solve as it is a major concern for Sony. He added that most of Sony's high-definition line of products has already been produced and should be usable for the upcoming years, even though the copy protection scheme has not been finalized.

Sony Europe's Recording Media & Energy (RME) division also announced that its BD media will ship in Europe in March 2006. Single-layer BD rewritable media will be available in stores in mid March and single layer BD recordable media will be shipping in April. Sony also revealed that it is ready to release dual layer discs later this year.

Blu-ray recordable media (BD-R) will be available in Europe next month and should sell for under €25 while rewritable discs (BD-RE) will be available by May and should sell for under €30, according to Mr. Schuette. The exact prices were not revealed, but he claimed that Sony would be competitive.

 

 

 

Main Sponsors
 

5. NME

New Medium Enterprise and Beijing E-World Technology

CDRinfo visited the New Medium Enterprise (NME) and Beijing E-World Technology Co. booth where we met with Alexander Bolker-Hagerty, Chief Operating Officer at NME and Li Hai, Beijing E-World Technology Vice-President.

NME has acquired the Versatile Multilayer Disc (VMD) intellectual property assets, a Red laser optical storage disc that delivers the capacity to store up to 20 layers of content on one side of a disc and store from 20 to 40GB of content. Beijing E-World is a Chinese optical storage company that produces an HD storage format, the Enhanced Versatile Disc (EVD).

Both companies announced their merger in December which is to be finalized in April under the name NME-World, which will become the unique owner of the High-definition Red laser technology.

According to the company, the technology would be capable of storing up to 100GB of data content. The VMD technology is compatible with today's standard CD and DVD formats.

"Without making a drastic shift from Red laser technology, researchers at NME have found a means of exploiting the unused or wasted space between the existing layers of a standard DVD through its unique multilayer technology. This brilliantly innovative technology, is evident in Versatile Multilayer Discs or VMD, starting with a minimum storage capacity of 20GB today, 40 GB in the 3rd quarter and expandable further in the future," reads the company's press kit.

NME has already signed content agreements in India, China, Russia and South America. Through an agreement with Eros Group, a distributor of Indian movies, NME will acquire the rights of more than 2600 Bollywood films, of which 50 will be available in the VMD format by the end of 2006.

Mr.Bolker-Hagerty from NME explained to CDRinfo that VMD technology requires only minor modifications to current manufacturing equipment, which avoids the high costs involved in switching to Blue laser technology.

He adds that NME's technology could eventually be adapted to the Blue laser technology when it will become flawless and more affordable. A Future Blue Laser VMD would deliver a potential 200GB optical storage capacity, he says.

NME also claims that VMD has maximum data transfer rate of 40 Mbps and delivers the 1024 bit VMDCPS content protection scheme.

Several feature-length films in High Definition (1920/1080 resolution) were exhibited at CeBIT.

NME and Beijing E-World were also showcasing a stand-alone player from Chinese manufacturer Shinco, as seen in the picture above, that will sell for approximately US$150.

Two bundled packages for High-Definition viewing were showcased. The home cinema package which consists of an EVD player with VMD technology combined with a 42-inch HD LCD screen and will sell for US$3000. The same home cinema package with a 37-inch HD LCD screen as seen in the picture above, will sell for US$2000.

A digital public theatre package playing VMD pre-recorded discs combining an EVD HD player, a JVC HD projector and surround sound will sell for approximately US$30,000. All products will be available in the third quarter of 2006.

 

 

 

Main Sponsors
 

6. Moser Baer

Interview With Moser Baer

At CeBIT this year, CDRinfo met with Mr. D. P. Nanda, General Manager of the optical storage company Moser Baer (photo below).

Moser Baer is a developer and manufacturer of removable data storage media with a broad product range including floppy disks, compact discs (CDs) and digital versatile discs (DVDs) with replication services for the Indian movie industry.

Moser Baer manufactures Recordable Compact Discs (CD-R), Rewritable Compact Discs (CD-RW), Pre-recorded CD/DVD, Digital Versatile Discs (DVD-R) and Rewritable Digital Versatile Disks (DVD-RW) and "LightScribe" enabled media.

The majority of Moser Baer's production is sold to OEM manufacturers (60%) and the rest is retailed under its own brand name (40%).

Mr. Nanda claims that Moser Baer is the world's second largest optical storage media manufacturer after CMC Magnetics.

He added that they manufacture 1.5 million CDs and 50 million DVDs every year. Among their yearly production, 2 million discs are Lightscribe" technology media, which are mainly OEM manufactured for other brand names.

The company is ready to release discs in the HD DVD format and by the end of 2006, Moser Baer will introduce its first Blu-ray media.

Mr. Nanda also mentioned that Mitsubishi Chemicals is their main supplier for the dye material used in the media.

Moser Baer's booth at CeBIt was located in Hall 3, Stand C03 and was one of the largest booths in the optical storage industry.

 

 

Main Sponsors
 

7. AOpen

AOpen Showcases New Products at CeBIT

CDRinfo visited the AOpen booth at CeBIT and met with Fabienne Fooij, Marketing Manager and Adriana Cobielles Castrejon, Marketing Communications Specialist at AOpen.

Ms. Fooij introduced the new products that were shown in the exhibition this year. She demonstrated the new motherboards. One of the most popular products that AOpen launched this year is the mini-PC.

AOpen was showcasing its new Mini PC in a regular home environment as seen in the picture above, delivering the same major functions that a regular PC delivers but in a miniature version. The design is aimed for use at home as an entertainment PC, and has also connections for digital or conventional TV sets. Also, it will provide a large storage capacity for storing movies and music.

The exhibition also included the latest AOpen motherboards.

Above, you can see the i975Xa-YDG motherboard.

The i945GTm-VHL model can be seen in the picture above. Both motherboards feature Intel Core Duo and Core Solo CPU support.

The e-PC can be seen in the two pictures underneath. Once again, it was showcased in a regular home environment.

The EPC945GT-m8 model features an Intel 45GT+ICH7M-DH chipset. The CPU is an M 479 TYPE-Socket with support for the Intel Yonah Dual Core CPU and features an Intel 945GT OnDie VGA.

Above you can see two slim-housing towers.

The XC Cube EU482 is shown above. It supports the Socket 939 pin CPUs, namely the AMDR Athlon FX and Athlon 64 CPU. It includes an ATI RS482 + IXPSB450 chipset.

Above, the EU 945-V PC has a Socket 775 that supports Intel Pentium4 500/600 series, Pentium4 EE series, PentiumD 800 series, Celeron 300 series. It comes with an Intel 945G+ICH7-DH chipset.

Above, the EZ661-T XC Cube model with a Socket T LGA775 that supports Intel Pentium 4 with HT Technology, up to 3.6GHz. It features a Prescott FSB800 and Prescott Celeron D.

Ms. Fooij also introduced us to the new AOpen chassis, incorporated in the G600 model that can be seen in the picture above, boasting a 22 cm fan. Ms. Fooij mainly emphasized the new stylish designs and space saving concepts that were adopted in AOpen's new products, introduced in 2006.

Optical Storage

AOpen also unveiled the company's roadmap for optical drives. The company plans to introduce its first Blu-ray burner late in 2006, and a 16x Super-multi DVD burner (16x DVD-RAM ) around August.

Model
EHU1616U PRO
EHS1685U
ESU8886U
ESS8865U
ISS8665SL
DSW1616L
DUW1268L
BDW0202L
Type
External USB 2.0
Slim External USB 2.0
Slim-type DVD burner for notebooks
Internal, IDE/ATAPI
Internal SATA
Writing speeds 16x DVD+R/-R

8x DVD+RW8x DVD+R DL6x DVD-R RW8x DVD-R DL
16x DVD+R/-R8x DVD+RW8x DVD+R DL6x DVD-R RW8x DVD-R DL5x DVD-RAM 8x DVD+R/-R8x DVD+RW4x DVD+R/-R DL6x DVD-RW
8x DVD+R/-R8x DVD+RW4x DVD+R/-R DL6x DVD-RW5x DVD-RAM 8x DVD+R6x DVD+RW4x DVD+R DL8x DVD-R6x DVD-RW4x DVD-R DL5x DVD-RAM 16x DVD+R 12x DVD+RW12x DVD+R DL16x DVD-R6x DVD-RW8x DVD-R DL16x DVD-RAM 16x DVD+R 12x DVD+RW12x DVD+R DL16x DVD-R6x DVD-RW8x DVD-R DL 2x BD-R/RE8x DVD+R/-R8x DVD+R/-R DL40x CD-R24x CD-RW
Availability
March
End of April
August
December

 

 

 

 

Main Sponsors
 

8. EVGA

EVGA at CeBIT

CDRinfo visited the EVGA booth at CeBIT and met Aline Guillout, Director of Sales in Europe, Middle East and Africa for the graphics cards manufacturer. EVGA only offers visual processing products based on nVIDIA chipsets.

 

EVGA was showcasing its new releases at this year's CeBIT exhibition. Already a leader in the graphics cards retail industry in North America, the company is now targeting the European market that it recently penetrated in October 2005, says Mrs. Guillout.

Mrs. Guillout claims that EVGA is the number one graphics cards distributor in North America. In year 2005 the company expanded its product line to include motherboards.

EVGA announced at CeBIT, that it is now offering the complete EVGA e-GeForce 7900 & 7600 product families. They are both nVIDIA SLI-Ready, featuring dual-link DVI-I output connectors (dual dual-link TMDS) and two DVI-to-VGA adapters to support any combination of digital or analog high resolution displays up to 2560 x 1600 (WQXGA) with HDTV output.

The EVGA SuperClocked version will be available for all levels as well.

Above, the new graphics processing unit (GPU) GeForce 7900 GTX superclocked model delivers a core clock speed of 690MHz and a memory clock speed of 1760MHz.

As for the e-GeForce 7600 GT superclocked model, it delivers a core clock speed of 600MHz and a memory clock speed of 1560MHz.

The nForce 4 SLI Mainboard model seen in the following picture features an NVIDIA Intel nForce4 chipset. It supports the Intel Dual-Core, Prescott LGA 775 processor. It delivers an 1066/800 MHz Front Side Bus.

 

The nForce 4 SLI Mainboard is already available in North America and was launched in March in Europe. This model, seen in the picture above, supports the AMD Dual-Core, Athlon 64 FX and Athlon 64 939-pin processors. It features an NVIDIA nForce 4, single chipset which supports 1000MHz Hyper Transport system bus.

 

The EVGA booth at CeBIT this year was located in Hall 23 at Stand D28.

 

 

 

 

Main Sponsors
 

9. NVIDIA

NVIDIA at CeBIT

CDRinfo visited the NVIDIA booth at CeBIT and met with Director of Product PR EMEAI, Luciano Alibrandi.

At CeBIT, NVIDIA announced a variety of new technologies that are immediately available worldwide. Mr. Alibrandi explained that the company's new policy is to simultaneously release all their new products as soon as they are announced.

 

NVIDIA was also announcing the GeForce 7 Series of graphics processing units (GPUs). These include the Ge7900 GTX (seen in the picture above), the GeForce 7900 GT and the GeForce 7600 GT models that will support HD resolutions. The list of partners that will be offering graphics cards based on the new NVIDIA GeForce 7 Series GPUs include Albatron, AOpen, ASUS, Biostar, Club 3D, EVGA, Gigabyte, MSI and XFX.

NVIDIA was also unveiling the Quad SLI technology that feature four graphics processing units (GPUs) that can be used simultaneously on the new nForce 4 SLI motherboard as seen in the picture below. The new technology allows gamers to set their monitors to extreme High-definition resolutions.

NVIDIA announced the immediate availability of the Quad SLI-based PCs featuring four graphics processing units from its new GeForce 7900 Series and the nForce 4 SLI mainboard.

Finally, NVIDIA also introduced the mobile SLI, its first High-definition inter grated graphics processing unit (IGP) core-logic solution for notebooks. The new mobile IGP accelerates HD MPEG 2, VC1 and H.264 playback on a laptop and it t is designed to work with Microsoft's new Vista operating system.

SLI technology also enables two NVIDIA GeForce Go 7800 GTX GPUs to be used in notebooks based on the nForce 4 SLI core-logic solution.

 

Mr. Alibrandi explained that the SLI technology is optimized for the Microsoft Windows Vista OS which was a new challenger for the industry as it is the first system to require a dedicated GPU in order to realize its full potential.

NVIDIA was also showcasing its new GoForce 5500 handheld graphics processing unit (GPU), providing VGA support for digital TV, high fidelity surround sound, and console class 3D graphics for all handheld devices.

The NVIDIA GoForce 5500 supports playback of H.264, WMV9 and MPEG-4 video up to D1 resolution at 30 frames per second (fps), High Fidelity Surround Sound and is compatible with major mobile TV standards including DVB-H, ISDB-T and DMB.

Above, NVIDIA was demonstrating High-Defintion resolution using a High-defintion camera, the HDR-HC1 model from Sony. By pushing the red button, visitors could see the small model in standard video resolution and the blue button, in HD resolution. NVIDIA wanted to demonstrate the image quality that its chipsets will deliver for an HD format.

Finally, NVIDIA was also demonstrating its next-generation NVIDIA NForce 500 family of core-logic solutions. These future products that are to be released in mid 2006, will support SLI technology including Quad SLI. They will also support the upcoming dual-core AMD socket AM2 processors.

NVIDIA's public booth was located in Hall 23, stand B20 and had the shape of an eye, resembling NVIDIA's logo.

 

 

 

 

Main Sponsors
 

10. MSI

MSI at CeBIT

CDRinfo visited MSI's booth and met with Kim Dinnissen, Marketing Communication Officer and her colleague Ilona van Poppel also from MSI's Marketing Department.

Ms. Dinnissent showed CDRinfo MSI's wide range of products, including the latest motherboards, graphics cards, media center PCs, NAPA platform notebooks, complete line-up of MP3 players, Bluetooth and Wi-Fi gadgets. .

Above the MSI S262 is MSI's latest additions to its family of Intel-based PC notebooks. These new labtops are powered by Intel's next-generation dual-core Centrino which has the integration of brand-new electric power and wireless network technology.

Ms. Dinnissen also showed CDRinfo the new MSI Living room PC (LV PC) which is the latest addition to MSI's Media Center PC family. It is the first Media Center PC with an AMD official certification. With the "AMD Athlon™/Athlon™ 64 FX processor" the new live PC allows multimedia editing, playing, ripping or compressing. With the NVIDIA integrated GPU, users can play most 3D games by fully supports of DirectX 9.0.

Motherboards

Ms. Dinnissen showed CDRinfo the motherboards that were displayed at CeBIT including some new products.

Above, the new K8N Diamond Plus is based on the MSI Diamond series motherboards. The new SLI X16 architecture enhances the graphics performance for all 3D games. In addition, MSI has introduced Sound Blaster Audigy SE audio into the K8N Diamond Plus to improve the sound quality.

 

Above, the K8N Master2-FAR mainboard supports dual AMD Opteron processors. It includes NVIDIA's nForce4 Pro chipset supporting SLI mode.

 

Above, the MSI K9N Platinum mainboard includes AMD's AM2 940 Pin socket and is powered with NVIDIA's MCP55 chipset. It supports SLI architecture.

Graphics cards

MSI was showcasing its new range of graphics cards including the 90nm process GPU in all its ATI graphics cards from high-end products such as RX1900XTX-VT2D512E to mainstream like RX1300PRO-TD256E (photo below), the 90nm process GPU.

The RX1900 "CrossFire" gaming system offers a combination of the MSI 975X Platinum motherboard and RX1900 CrossFire/RX1900XTX graphics card. It can be seen in the picture above. In Mid-High segment, MSI RX1600XT-T2D256EZ uses a copper heat-pipe for cooling to eliminate the need for an additional noisy fan.

Above, you can see the MSI NX6600 Ares graphics card With 33% higher core clock and 60% higher memory clock, the MSI NX6600 Ares graphics card reaches up to 30% higher performance than the standard version. With 256MB DDR2 memory and ultra speed PCI Express , MSI NX6600 Ares graphics card processes 3D data stream a lot faster than its predecessor.

 

MSI was additionnally unveiling its latest graphics card, the NX7900GTX /GT Series that incorporates NVIDIA latest GeForce 7900GTX /GT graphics processor. MSI's new graphics card seen in the picture above can deliver an image quality at resolutions up to 2560x1600. It also 256-bit memory interface and fast GDDR3 memory.

MSI was also unveiling the NX7600GT Series graphics cards based on NVIDIA's GeForce 7600GT graphics processor. The NX7600GT series graphics processing units (GPUs) delivers image quality at resolutions up to 2560x1600. It features a 256-bit memory interface and fast GDDR3.

Above, MSI was showing its new upgradeable MXM mobile graphics card that can be adapted to desktop usage. This new card gives the possibility to upgrade the GPU or work the SLI mode on a single card.

MSI will showcase its solar-energy based technology which is included in its new SOLAR NOTEBOOK and Solar Cell MP3 Players. They both feature a solar plate that provides unlimited power and usage to user. For mobile devices, the solar plate recharger can provide efficient power supply and will help decrease hazardous waste and pollution from used batteries as well, explained Ms. Dinnissen.

Consumer electronics

The MSI Free Style FS530 Wireless Music Speaker FS530 (photo below) provides stereo CD quality audio from Bluetooth embedded device (ex. laptop, or mobile phone) thru Bluetoothk. The conference call function also comes in handy if you have a Bluetooth mobile phone. Free Style FS530 combines a stereo speaker with a detachable headset unit.

 

The new D310 allows consumers to watch live digital TV (DVB-T) on the go. It supports SD/MMC Card, music playback, photo browsing and MPEG4 playback via card reader. I also comes with an AV out to large TV display.

Above, the Mega Player 550 delivers a storage capacity of up to 4GB.

MSI was showcasing its new products in Hall 22, booth A16.

 

 

 

 

 

Main Sponsors
 

11. ABIT

The ABIT booth in Hall 22, Booth 13 had a two tier design. On the 1st floor, you could see all the new products, while on the 2nd, were the meeting rooms.

ABIT's whole product range was on display and included its most recent releases as well as some previous ones.

Below, is the new KN9 SLI board, based on NVidia's chipset that supports the latest generation of AMD Socket 940 with 2000MT/s HyperTransport Technology. 4 DIMMS Dual DDR2 667 and 6x SATA are some of its features.

The KN9 SLI up and working...

The AN8 32X with 939 socket for AMD platforms is based on the NVidia NForce 4 SLI x16 chipset for dual 16X PCIe support. You can see the passive cooling system for noiseless operation. This is mostly a gamers edition board, or at least that's what's indicated by the Fatal1ty logo.

The following board is the AT8 32X based on the ATI's RD580 chipset and supports AMD socket 939 with 2000MT/s HyperTransport Technology. This is a Crossfire enabled board with dual slot PCIe architecture and 16X graphics performance for each channel.

The UL8 Pro is based on the new ULI M1697 chipset for 939 socket. The Pro stands for PCIe 16X.

A new addition to ABIT's product range are the new iDome amplified 2.1 surround speakers. The set includes two satellite speakers and a subwoofer as well as an inter grated digital amplifier. All connections are digital/optical for pure digital sound.

The iDome is controlled by the μGuru chip which commands the digital amplifier to simulate several sound environments. You can select from Flat, Game, Movie, Music, Jazz or Rock.

If you passed by the booth at the right time, or if you have patience and could wait for a while, you could see the professional gamer Fatal1ty in action.

 

 

 

Main Sponsors
 

12. BIOSTAR

Biostar is a well known manufacturer of motherboards, subsystems, display and audio card solutions. Biostar had a huge booth at this year's CeBIT at Hall 22, Stand A06.

A complete motherboard product line

The TForce 550 is a board for the new generation of AMD processors, the AM2.

The following board is the TForce4 U 775 for Intel 775 platforms based on the NForce4 Ultra SPP chipset, which currently, only Biostar in co-operation with NVidia, are about to release.

Biostar also offers extreme Graphics Cards solutions, as with the latest V7903GX52, which is the 7900 GTX from NVidia.

Biostar recently launched a monitoring utility for Windows, that informs the user on the rotation speed of the fans, temperature levels, as well as as CPU and RAM Usage.

 

 

 

Main Sponsors
 

13. Thermaltake

Once again, Thermaltake impressed us with its latest products. This year at Hall 24, Booth C04, Thermaltake had an even larger booth than last year.

The infamous Tai Chi was presented in Tt's booth.

You could see all of the PC case solutions from Tt. Most of them have been improved with the addition of extra cooling, as in the case of the updated Kandalf LCS.

If you also need an impressive case for your HTPC that will blend in with your existing sound system, then Thermaltake can offer you the Bach, Mozart or Tenor series.

An extreme PC case solution we saw at Thermaltake's booth, was the Mozart Tx PC case, with dual PC capability, the world's first case with built in 7" drive bay.

The primary system can be an ATX, Micro ATX, BTX, Micro BTX, Nano BTX or Pico BTX, while for a secondary system a Mini ITX.

Two different PCs are installed in this Mozart Tx.

New power supplies, for PC enthusiasts with extreme demands from their PSU. Thermaltake even has a 750W PSU solution.

The well known Big Typhoon and Blue Orb II or the Golden Orb II were also in Tt's booth with some minor improvements.

In water cooling systems, it seems that Thermaltake is going to be one of the best. Huge range of water cooling solutions with several 12cm fans will promise to keep your system quiet and more than cool...

also, Compact water cooling solutions...

The latest VGA cards get quite hot while making a lot of noise. Thermaltake has great solutions for this, such as the Tide Water Plus shown in the following image.

 

 

Main Sponsors
 

14. Sparkle

Among the new products from Sparkle at this year's CeBIT were the NVIDIA GeForce 7900 GTX 512MB GDDR3, NVIDIA GeForce 7900 GT 256MB GDDR3 and NVIDIA GeForce 7600 GT 256MB GDDR3 Graphics Cards. We visited Sparkle's booth at Hall 20 D29 for a closer look.

 

 

 

Main Sponsors
 

15. Club3D

Club3D is known worldwide, mainly for its graphics cards. The new X1900XTX with ViVo connection, as well as the 7900GTX and the 7600GT, were on show at Club3D's booth, at Hall 23, C32.

We were also told of a very interesting feature with Club3D's graphics cards. If you decide to change the GPU cooler with a third party cooler available on the market, the warranty isn't affected.

A new innovative water cooling solution will also be released at the end of this month. Until now, water cooling systems would typically fit only specific models of graphics cards. If a new card was purchased, you had to buy a new cooling system to fit. Now, with Club3D's new cooling system, this is not necessary. Due to a newly designed base, the new system can be used with (according to Club3D) every VGA card on the market.

All cards will be available in a newly designed retail package, without the usual dragons or devils, sporting a more serious look.

This year, one of the most impressive things is the release of a complete Media center solution with a high quality TV Tuner, remote control and a very simple media center application software. This package will be released on the market in June. The company will also offer affordable TV Tuner solutions...

 

 

 

Main Sponsors
 

16. Zalman

Zalman, a company synonymous with cooling solutions, was at CeBIT this year also, this time with a larger booth than in previous years.

Below you can see one of the more HiEnd water cooling systems, the Reserator1 Plus.

Zalman had its latest HD160 in its booth, a 100% aluminium HTPC enclosure with great design. The HD160 is of course, equipped with Zalman's coolers for quiet cooling.

The CNPS9700 LED is a new version of the CNPS9500LED, utilizing the 110mm blue LED fan for smoother airflow and minimal noise. This new heatsink with three heatpipes offers the equivalent heat transfer capacity equivalent of six heatpipes through the use of its innovative curved heatpipe design. It is provided with an adjustable fan speed controller (FAN MATE2), which enables control of the fan speed. As a finishing touch, it utilizes an ultra quiet opaque 110mm fan with blue LEDs, emitting an air of style and sleekness. The CNPS9700 LED will give much better performance, according to Zalman, than any other air cooler on the market.

 

 

Main Sponsors
 

17. OCZ

We visited OCZ's booth, one of the largest manufacturers of memory solutions. OCZ's name is a guarantee of performance and quality.

OCZ has a full product range covering the needs for extreme users and not only...

Recently, OCZ announced the DDR2 PC2-8800 Platinum, capable of running at 1100MHz with timings of CL 5-6-6. This memory will be available in 512MB and 1GB modules. There will also be a version running at 1000MHz with CL 4-5-4 and codename PC2-8000.

One of the most impressive things we saw at this year's CeBIT was the new liquid cooling system from OCZ, the Cryo-Z. The Cryo-Z is an extremely powerful and compact unit with aluminium chassis and pure copper base. The manufacturer promises 100% motherboard compatibility while the estimated temperature for a PC running under full load is close to -30°C!!! At the beginning of its release, (real soon), the Cryo-Z will cost close to US$350.

OCZ is also about to offer a new cooling system series, an affordable solution and less complicated, easy for everybody.

 

 

Main Sponsors
 

18. GEIL

Geil is one of the most innovative and revolutionary memory manufacturers. Its new products at this year's CeBIT confirmed this once again.

A new memory series is about to be released, with a more efficient cooling system. Copper fins, heatpipe with liquid and potentiometer for voltage on the memory.

 

 

 

Main Sponsors
 

19. FOXCONN

Foxconn is a worldwide provider of motherboards, enclosures, coolers, barebone systems, etc. The company had a rather large booth at this year's CeBIT.

A whole new PC case series was presented at Foxconn's booth.

Foxconn has already built new platforms for the new AM2 processor from AMD. The models are the MCP55PM2AA-8EKRS2 based on NVidia's MCP55P chipset, the RS485M2MA-8EKRS2 based on the ATI RS485 + SB460 chipset and the 6100M2MA-8EKRS2 with the NVidia GeForce 6100 + nForce 410 chipsets. All come with DDR2 667 support and PCIe 16X slot. In the case of the MCP55PM2AA-8EKRS2, there are two PCIe X16 for SLI use.

The following board is based on the VIA K8M890 + 8237A chipset and is intended for the new AM2. Its codename is K8M890M2MA-8EKRS2.

Foxconn also offers an Intel 775 socket board based on the latest 975X chipset with codename 975XAA-8EKRS2.

Foxconn offers for its boards, its own monitoring and overclocking utility for Windows. The FOXONE will help you improve the performance of your 975XAA-8EKRS2 board from Windows, while keeping you informed about the condition of your system.

The NF4SXE7AA-8EKRS2 is based on NVidia's NF4 SLI XE with 2x PCIe x16.

In the case of graphics cards, Foxconn presented some extreme solutions in its booth. The Quadra SLI was one of them. Unfortunately, NVIDIA would not disclose any information about this technology.

Foxconn also makes cooling systems for both AMD and Intel platforms.

As you may notice in the photo below, the coolers are the stock ones that Intel uses for its retail packages. Foxconn provides Intel with these coolers.

 

 

 

Main Sponsors
 

20. Sapphire

We visited Sapphire at Hall 19, Booth B35-1. We saw the latest products from the company, with highlights being the BLIZZARD RADEON X1900 XTX graphics card and the RADEON X1600 PRO HDMI.

It seems that Sapphire's latest model is 6 foot tall with long blonde hair!!! The water cooling is a different issue altogether :-)

With the BLIZZARD RADEON X1900 XTX model, Sapphire offers its own water cooling solution.

Specifications:

BLIZZARD Liquid Cooling System
Pure Copper Water Block for superior heat conductivity
Pure Copper Radiator for great heat dissipation
Speed adjustable transparent blue LED fan (18/26dBA at 2000/2500RPM)
RADEON™ X1900 XTX core (650MHz)
512MB GDDR3 onboard memory (1550MHz)
PCI Express x16
Dual DVI
Video-In and Video-Out
2 Sapphire Select Unlock keys

The new X1600Pro from Sapphire has an HDMI interface and a S/PDIF connector, meaning it can process both video and audio on one card. The Silicon Image 1930 processor in combination with the AKM PPL and 8051μC chipsets are responsible for this.

The Sapphire Radeon X1600Pro HDMI card is scheduled for availability in April and will deliver both audio and video to HDMI compliant displays and televisions.

The Sapphire RADEON X1600Pro with its 12 Pixel pipelines provides, the highest graphics performance in its class even for shader intensive gaming. Equipped with 128MB of GDDR3 memory, this model features clock speeds of 500MHz (core) and 800MHz (memory).

 

 

Main Sponsors
 

21. Coolermaster

On the second day of CeBIT, we visited Cooler Master's booth which showcased some of their latest releases, including a new series of PSUs and several HD enclosures. We took some pictures of their latest products, some of which are already available on the market and some of which are to be released by the end of this month.

The Cooler Master RC-632 was one of the first chassis that caught our eye, with its sleek design and sliding mechanism on the front panel...

Another new release was the Wave Master II, an upgrade of Cooler Master's best known chassis. The case design follows the same smooth, linear trend which Cooler Master is known for. The removable front face bezel is available to suit all cases of the end user needs, making it unique, as it was demonstrated to us at Cooler Master's booth.

The CM Media 250 with a live display demo in Cooler Master's booth. Cooler Master showcased several of their stand alone devices, such as the CM Media 250, which among other things, follows the same environmental friendly strategy as most of the CM products.

The EMI shielded case is more than most end user require, including a Micro ATX M/B and PSU and two drive bays.

Recently, CM held a contest for the best looking CM chassis user modded case. The case seen in the above picture, is a definite eye catcher, the Praetorian box, with sword 'n all...

One of CM's latest releases was the iGreen Power 430W/500W/600W. As advertised, the iGreen Power is the first power supply which achieves 85% efficiency through Double Forward Switching Circuit Technology. The iGreen is environment friendly, while it has met the Energy Star and Blue Angel requirements. iGreen Power supports the newest Intel standard ATX 12V V2.2 and the newest SSI standard EPS 12V V2.91 (iGreen Power 500W/600W only). A 120mm dual ball bearing fan, further improves the heat exhaust providing greater stability.

Another highlight of the CeBIT fair at CM's booth was the AQUAGATE Viva, the first VGA Liquid Cooling System converted for CPU application. The universal retention plate, supports both nVIDIA and ATI VGA cards as well as the universal fastener for K8/P4/LGA775 CPUs. The AQUAGATE Viva comes with 2 water blocks to support SLI and CrossFire. Liquid Cooling at its best.

Stylish and cool are just a couple of superlatives that can be used to describe the XCraft enclosure series from CM. As seen in the above picture, all the latest models were showcased, with several having a fan system included. The XCraft 350, the external hard drive enclosure is compatible with all OS, Windows and Mac alike. The 350 can hold 3.5-inch IDE and SATA hard drives, up to 500GB in capacity. The interface supports USB 2.0 2-port hub, IEEE1394a and eSATA.

An external HD enclosure for the RAPTOR HDD was also showcased...

Of course, CPU cooling solutions could not be absent from CM's booth. The RR-CCH-ANUI-GP (LGA 775 and K8) is a CPU cooler with 6 copper heatpipes and 2 120mm fans on top, offering great heat dissipation but at a slightly increased noise level.

Last but not least, the iGreen Cooler (LGA 775 and K8) was also showcased. The iGreen Cooler offers tool-less installation, without the need to remove the M/B, and silent functioning with the 90mm fan positioned on top of the heatsink.

And with that, we left Cooler Master's booth. We expect most of the products to be available by the end of this or the next month, with some already on the market.

 

 

Main Sponsors
 

22. Roxio
Again this year, we were happy to visit Sonic-Roxio at CeBIT where we met with European Marketing Manager David Burton, Senior Manager EBusiness EMEA Niko Bozok, and OEM Sales - Europe John Newman.

We were given a demonstration of Roxio's Blu-ray Disc recording and playback solutions which also included a brief viewing of the world’s first BD title "Chronos", which was produced by Technicolor using the Sonic suite of tools. It was interesting to see the features that have been added to HD content, such as picture in picture, more elaborate menus, popup hints, you can even view the film's script in a side panel. In general, far more interactivity with far more choices to both the "author" and hence, viewer. Apart from the higher quality, the big difference is in the way options are available to the viewer. Traditionally, if you want to go back to the starting menu of any currently available title, the movie stops while you make your choice. With new HD content titles, this is no longer the case, and any menus are overlayed on top, while the movie continues to play. In other words, the movie itself and any options available to the viewer can exist and operate simultaneously on screen.

All HD content authoring is achieved with BD-J, a Java based language for Blu-ray or iHD, an XML based language for HD-DVD, both of which are supported by the Sonic-Roxio products. Content authors can also incorporate dynamic content, downloadable from the internet (for PCs or set top boxes that have internet connection) which can include trailers or even recommend titles based on the genre of the current movie playing.

We were also shown a very basic backup demonstration where files on a computer hard disk were backed-up onto Blu-ray RE (re-writable) media. What was impressive here was how quickly the 180MB of data was written to the disc, a matter of a few seconds.

Sonic also provides a "client" software which is initially being shipped in Broadcom based set-top boxes, providing the capability of downloading HD titles on demand over an internet connection.

 

 

 

Main Sponsors
 

23. Plasmon
Plasmon manufactures what are undoubtedly amongst the most advanced and reliable archival solutions available today. They use their own Blue Laser based technology called UDO (Ultra Density Optical) which allows them to deliver a capacity of 30GB currently, on single layer media. 60GB, also on single layer media using a 0.85 micrometre aperture lens, will be available soon. The media is manufactured by Plasmon and Verbatim. It is used in their archival storage range of products and optical libraries, and along with their Raidtec RAID solutions, offer one of the most robust solutions for long term storage.


The UDO Archive Appliance

On display at this year's CeBIT, was Plasmon's new UDO Archive Appliance which combines the performance offered by RAID along with the reliability and security of UDO. It effectively provides a solution in cases where industrial regulations must be met, such as in the medical or financial sectors, or where strict corporate policies need to be enforced, for long-term document retention.

The UDO Archive Appliance is the integration of the UDO technology, which provides the most reliable method of archival storage being far superior to magnetic-based solutions, a RAID cache for high performance access to records, and a NAS server for network access control to the archive. There are several configurations available, depending on the capacity required, ranging from 960GB up to 19TB.

There are also a number of case studies available from Plasmon (http://www.plasmon.co.uk) covering medical imaging systems in the Healthcare industry.


Screenshot from KOM Networks KOMworx application

Plasmon also collaborates with several partners to deliver a variety of software solutions. One of these companies is KOM, Canadian based who were present at the Plasmon Booth. KOM has developed a product called KOMWorx, which provides a Windows GUI management interface for managing Plasmon's UDO Archive Appliance. It transparently handles all requests and makes the UDO Archive Appliance look like a single, ordinary disk device. However, it also implements policy management so that documents, images and any other types of records, cannot be tampered with or deleted. Main application is in the Healthcare and Financial Services Industries.


Plasmon's Enterprise solution, the AA638 with 19TB of storage.

 

 

 

Main Sponsors
 

24. Primera

The Disc Publisher XR is a standalone disc burner or publisher as it is branded, capable of burning and labeling more than 100 media, either DVD or CD and even Blue Ray (BD) media. We sat down and discussed this latest release with Mark D.Strobel, Primera's Vice President and Sales and Marketing Manager. "The XR-Series is specifically designed for Mission Critical applications" Mr. Strobel explained,"a term we use to describe applications that require the utmost efficiency in burning and printing, with solid reliability and professional-quality recorded and printed CDs, DVDs even Blu-Ray (BD) media".


What we found to be most interesting was the fact that this release is not a one unit solution, but more like an expandable device, where the professional end user can combine parts, to suit their needs. Thus, the Disc Publisher XR can be used as a Server XR Disc Publisher XR (where the user can manage his work through the server and burn the required media with a max number of 50 discs), as a Server XR Disc Publisher XRP (which can hold a capacity of 100 media) or even a Server XR Disc Publisher XRP with Laminator for burning and printing media with waterproof or Glossy surfaces, depending on the needs of the end user.

The heart of the Disc Publisher XR is the Server XR, which is responsible for handling all the burning and printing jobs. Mr.Strobel explained the Server XR philosophy, which can be summarised simply as user friendly and unique. The server is equipped with a wireless 802.11g networking option, so that anyone with a wireless connection and access can send their printing jobs. On top of this, the end user can choose what brand of parts will be installed in the server, with a choice from a wide variety of CPUs, memory, hard drives and operating systems. Mr.Strobel also mentioned a Linux OS version to be released in the near future.

Lastly, the Server XR configurations can be made by an Authorized Primera ReSeller, Distributor or OEM. But Primera Technology Inc did not stop there.

Apart from the Disc Publisher XR, Primera Showcased yet another release, more of an upgrade to the well known Disc Publisher II and Pro. The Autoloader ADL-MAX expands the quantity of the media available for burning. Simply placing the Disc Publisher II or Pro in the ADL-MAX platform, and jacking in the ADL max in the USB slot of the PC (a small driver program included), the user can burn up to 325 or 350 media, depending on the version of the Disc Publisher.

With that, we concluded our visit to the Primera Booth, where we can say that we were impressed with the innovative technology and products we saw this year.

 

 

 

Main Sponsors
 

25. Albatron

We visited Albatron's booth during the third day of the fair. We met with one of Albatron's European representatives and walked around the booth, seeing the highlights and latest releases.

The booth showcased all of the latest releases, including several motherboards which are due for release later on this year, some as soon as a month.

The most popular product showcased was the PX975X, an all Intel Dual VGA (ATI CrossFire) compatible motherboard. The Mainboard also supports 8GB of memory and Dual Core Extreme edition CPUs. It also has dual Power Supply Connectors, enabling improved functionality and stability.

The K8NF4X-757 was also on display at Albatron's booth. Equipped with an nVIDIA nForce4 4X chipset, the K8NF4X-754 supports AMD Athlon 64 / Sempron Processors. Some other characteristics are socket 754 with Hyper Transport 800+MHz, built-in 6 channel AC97 Audio, built-in 10/100 Mbps LAN PHY, 4 SATA 150MB/s Channels, SATA RAID 0, 1& 0+1 and ABS (Albatron BIOS security). This last characteristic is optional and offers a safe back up option to the end user, where all BIOS changes are made directly to the plug in chip, so in case of failure, the chip can be replaced and any harm on the motherboard itself is avoided.

Micro ATX motherboards were also there, with all the features, offering stability and performance to end users not dedicated to gaming, but still wanting a complete solution for home or office use.

Last but not least, Albatron showcased a live demo KI51PV mini-ITX motherboard, which supports the AMD Athlon 64/Sempron/Turion 64 Processors, HTT 800+MHz and has an Inter grated NVIDIA GeForce 6150 graphics engine which provides DVI / D-SUB / HDTV (through an optional cable) interfaces. We've seen the KI51PV perform under 3DMARK 05 and its performance was more than enough to catch anyone's eye.

As Albatron informed us, in the GPU arena, more things are to come, but in the meanwhile, their GPUs were mostly reference without any tweaks.

 

 

 

Main Sponsors
 

26. Arctic Cooling

CDRinfo met with Magnus Huber at the Arctic cooling booth, Managing Director for R&D who discussed with us, some of their latest products which are currently under development.

Mr. Huber, among other things, presented us with the Fusion Power, AC's latest PSU release. This new Power Supply unit will be available in both 115V and 230V, and will provide an outstanding 650 Watts output power. Apart from its noticeable power capacity, the Fusion Pro also offers Dynamic Current Limiting, a feature which helps prevent OS failures and crashes when one rail draws too much power, as well as providing high voltage stability.

Mr. Huber explained the importance of these two new features. When we have a power surge, a spontaneous power spike could cause the PSU to lower its frequency, causing the OS to crash. By evenly spreading the surge, the PSU recovers before the surge itself has completed its cycle, thus providing a safer environment.

The Alpine series on display...

The PSU is planned for release by the end of next month. As for the cost of the Fusion Pro, it will not disappoint the potential buyer, as AC is known for their best buy solutions, always providing a very good compromise between price and quality. CDRinfo readers will be able to take a closer look at the PSU itself, as the Fusion Pro will be available for testing in our labs as soon as it hits retail release.

Some of the famous AC cases...

27. Kingmax

This year, Kingmax presented their latest products, including microSD cards, MCC mobile 4.X engine cards, Super sticks, MMCmicro flash cards and of course, their DDR-DDR II modules.

The Kingmax microSD mobile phone memory comes in two capacities, 256 and 512MB modules. Main advantages of this product among others, are its small size and water and dust resistance.

Several DDR modules were showcased, including DDR modules for Notebooks...

More Micro-DIMM modules were available, like the Venus DDR2-667 module.

The total memory capacity reaches all the way up to 2GB per module even for notebook use...

Kingmax implemented a unique chipset design, providing protection against "cloning" from third party manufacturers...

All the memory modules came in various timings, including the 800MHz 1GB module and 1066 module...

The highlight of the Kingmax booth, was the Super Stick. Measuring only 39mm by 12.4mm by 2.2mm and weighing less than 5g, the Super Stick is by far the smallest and lightest storage product in the world. Suffice it to say, that the people at the Kingmax booth were actually wearing these storage devices, which reach all the way up to 2GB capacity, as earrings. Now, that's small...

With that, we concluded the Kingmax booth coverage where among other things, we saw the world's smallest storage product showcased...

 

 

 

Main Sponsors
 

28. Powercolor

Powercolor this year showcased several ATI based products, reference and non reference designs. The highlight of the Powercolor booth was the new EVO2 Silent Cooling Technology, a system specifically designed for keeping the GPU temperature at low levels through the use of Liquid Cooling in a CrossFire Solution. The EVO2 consists of a small pump, twin thermal control fan system (19dB noise) and leakage proof alert.

Apart from that, Powercolor showcased a live demo of a X1900 CrossFire setup. Visitors were able to witness first hand, the truly astonishing performance of the X1900 in CrossFire mode.

Powercolor also showcased one of the first HDMI cards for personal computers, the X1300HDMI interfaced card with a Powercolor made cooler...

Last but not least, the X1800GTO was also there, as well the PowerColor Theatre 650 PRO, an upcoming digital/analogue hybrid TV tuner card using ATI’s latest theatre chipset...

That covers the Powecolor presentation in their booth at this years CeBIT fair...

 

 

 

Main Sponsors
 

29. SiS

This year's SiS booth was divided into 7 areas including desktop PCs, notebook PCs, partners’ motherboards, embedded systems platforms, WLAN products, as well as an Xbox 360 gaming zone and DRAM module displays.

So, a wide variety of products were showcased at the SIS booth, including the embedded system chipset and powerful multimedia chipset for Microsoft’s game console, the Xbox 360, which held a special place in the booth, under a magnifying lens for the visitors to take a closer view.

Of course, since we're known for our investigative nature, we couldn't resist the urge to pick it up and take a closer look for ourselves. So here it is, the XBOX 360 chipset...

Among others, SIS showcased some of their latest chipsets including the SiS656, SiS649, SiS649DX, SiS649FX, SiS661FX, SiS661GX, SiS756, and SiS761GX, which fully support Dual-Core processing.

As mentioned, notebooks had their separate place in the SIS booth. In the picture above, we can see several notebooks that include the SIS manufactured chipsets. Among these are notebook PC makers using the AMD Turion™ 64 platform and embedded with the SiS756 (Twinhead), the SiSM760 (Fujitsu Siemens), the SiSM760GX (Acer, Asus, NEC, Averatec). Lastly, Clevo adopted the Mobile Intel® Pentium® 4 platform which is embedded with the SiS656.

Both Intel and AMD based motherboards were showcased...

And of course the embedded systems platform solutions as well as WLAN devices...

Note that this year, SIS released a wide variety of memory modules, providing support for different requirements of speed, size, and memory capacity for desktop and notebook PCs with DDR2-800, DDR2-667, DDR2-533, DDR-400, and DDR-333.

 

 

 

Main Sponsors
 

30. Galaxy

We met with the representative of Galaxy Tech at Hall 23, where the latest Galaxy products were on display. All Nvidia based cards (most of the Galaxy graphics cards were not reference models), had a Zalman cooler instead of the stock cooler with Galaxy cooperating with Zalman for their new graphics card series.

The 7900GT was present, with a copper based Zalman cooler in place. As the tag shows the viewer, the card supports HDTV/Dual DVI outputs.

Another close up of the 7600GT, 256MB/128bit graphics card. HDTV and Dual DVI is a standard for Galaxy graphic cards...

The whole series of graphics cards was showcased at Galaxy's booth, including reference Nvidia cards..

A close up of the 7600FT, fanless, passive cooling which as according to Galaxy, is a really efficient model.

The 6600GE model with a stylish Zalman cooler. This card is rumored to have quite the OC potential, but further testing needs to be done to ensure that this is the case. So let's just wait and see.

 

 

Main Sponsors
 

31. NTI

We met with NTI (NewTech Infosystems, Inc.) where they presented us with their latest product releases.

- NTI Ripper : NTI Ripper offers ripping capabilities at high speed, promising to cover all the needs of end users that want to archive their music collection. NTI Ripper comes with a built in auto-naming of artist, album, song, and track number feature, organizing and managing your music collection. It also supports media type conversion.

- NTI Dragon Flix : Targeting Mac OS users, Dragon Flix offers ripping of non protected DVD movies, with several options for compression and quality.

- NTI Dragon Burn : Another software for Mac OS users. Dragon burn enables Mac desktop and PowerBook notebook computer users to quickly and easily produce audio, data, mixed-mode CDs, and DVDs. Dragon Burn's Multi-Burning engine allows users to simultaneously write multiple CDs or DVDs. It also fully supports the newest internal and external drives, including 16x DVD-R drives.

- NTI Shadow 2 : Shadow 2 enables automatic, continuous back up of your photo, music, data, and video files to virtually any attached drive including pen drives, MP3 players, personal media player, NAS devices, and hard drives.

- NTI CD & DVD Maker 7 : CD & DVD Maker, does exactly what is says; enabling the user to burn CD and DVD media , either data or multimedia related.

- NTI Backup NOW! 4.0 : Another backup software from NTI. This software enables the user to choose between a whole image of a drive or portions of it, depending on requirements.

 

 

 

 

Main Sponsors
 

32. BenQ

BW1000 to be released in 3rd Q of 2006

March 9th in Hannover Germany and BenQ, one of the leading manufacturers in optical storage, announced the BW1000 model, their first Blue Ray enabled drive. We met with Jeff H. Lin, Administrator Storage Business Division with whom we discussed the Blue Ray model which was showcased in the BenQ booth, one of the largest booths at CeBIT this year. The BW1000 comes in two versions, internal and external which was named BW1000 on-the-go, (which is expected to be released a bit later this year, near 4Q). The company branded the drive as a "Trio", which refers to its compatibility with all three current formats, BD-DVD-CD. The max supported burning speed with BD media will be up to 2X for both reading and writing with either BD-R/BD-RE media for both single and dual layer (25GB and 50GB capacity).


The interface will be S-ATA 1, while the drive will feature Solid Burn, Write Right and WOPC, all unique and well known BenQ optical related technologies.

Apart from BD Optical storage, BenQ will be releasing a new multi drive which bears the model number 1670 DVD3 (pronounced DVD-Cubit). This new release will be able to read and write all media formats, including DVD-RAM, even though no further improvement (speed wise) has been made in DVD-RAM writing. The drive will also have a new bezel, more stylish, with a metallic faceplate and a colored line running across the front of the drive. Really impressive, as we witnessed first hand at CeBIT today. So we will have something to look forward to as we await for the most anticipated release of 2006, that of Blue Ray devices.

While waiting for the release of the Blue Ray technology to hit the retail market, BenQ has given a new dimension to the "LightScribe" technology. The 1655 is yet another release of the well known optical drive manufacturer, which according to the Business Line Manager BenQ Europe, will be able to reduce the LS burning time from 25-27mins, down to 15 mins. On top, the BenQ LS media line has been expanded with a wide variety of stylish colored media, for LS enthusiasts to use.

Some LS media, in various colors to spice up the collection for the end user...

Apart from Optical storage, BenQ showcased some of their reputable LCD Monitors and printing devices.

Having covered as much as possible of the BenQ Booth in Hall 1, which was actually one of the largest booths in CeBIT this year, we now await for the release of the BD drives, which we will test first hand.

 

 

 

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33. VIA

This year, VIA presented its audience with several new chipset solutions, for both AMD and Intel Platforms, as well as with the new Chromotion, the new Video Engine integrated into the latest VIA IGP Chipsets and S3 graphics cards.

Among other things, such as laptop solutions bearing the latest VIA chipsets, VIA also showcased the Origammi, Microsofts latest gadget.

The Chrome S27 and Chrome S25 were two of the grahic cards showcased at VIA's booth. The S3 S27 version will support the Multichrome Technology, which enables two S27 cards to work together (kind of an SLI version), while the S25 offers the AcceleRAM technology, which gives the graphics processors access to system memory via the high speed PCI Express bus, for quality and stability, without sacrificing performance.

Not much to say here, as the VIA name speaks of it self. This year VIA had a nice booth with all its chipsets showcased for the public to enjoy.

 

 

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34. Corsair

There is no much to say about Corsair, one of the greatest memory manufacturers worldwide. We visited Corsair's booth at Hall 22 and took some pictures.

All memory modules we at Corsair's booth.

The new DDR2, named TWIN2X1024-8500, from XMS2 series capable of running at 1066MHz with latencies 5-5-5-15 and 2.2V was the highlight of the memory series. This memory is SPD programmed at DDR2-800 5-5-5-15 values. A Sisoft Sandra Memory Bandwidth Benchmark was demostrated to us.

The Nautilus500 was presented in Corsair's booth. According to manufacturer the Nautilus500 designed with enthusiasts and beginning users in mind. Beginning users benefit from the QuickInstall design that allows any user to install the complete kit in less than 15 minutes without having to remove the motherboard from the case. Compared to other water cooling solutions currently available, the 15-minute installation time is twice as fast as the next best competitor.

Enthusiasts enjoy 30% more CPU and 40% more GPU cooling efficiency (compared to air cooling) without excessive noise. The all copper CPU water block using Micro Channel Technology(tm) provides maximum heat absorption and most efficient heat transfer. Fan speed can be adjusted to suit individual needs.

Each complete kit includes pre-fitted, pressure tested tubing that can easily be adjusted to shorter lengths without the fear of accidental leakage. For mobility-minded users and LAN party gamers, the kit also include quick connect self-sealing connectors to avoid having to drain the liquid during transport. (This also helps during initial installation).

The Nautilus500 complete kit can be used on any processor type including Intel(r) LGA775, socket 478 and AMD(r) sockets 754, 939 and 940. Allowing for maximum flexibility and adaptation, Nautilus500 can be configured with additional GPU and north bridge blocks.
These blocks are sold separately and can be daisy-chained to the CPU block without cooling performance degradation.

 

 

 

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35. ASUS - Page 1

HEART OF TECHNOLOGY

 

We met Emilie Lu, Europe Director of Asus and Mrs Manuela Lavezzari, marketing manager Asus Italy,
who were kind enough to give us a tour of Asus' huge booth in Hall 2, presenting one by one, their new product lines.

This Year, a beautiful yellow Lamborghini stood in front of the booth, catching the visitor's eye and was the main ploy behind Asus' marketing
concept. The well known sports car manufacturer's name has been given to many products such as laptops.

Asus showcased advanced digital home products, including a new 42-inch LCD TV, wireless skype phone, Network DVD Player and a PC based on Intel's ViiV platform. In addition, we took a look at their new notebooks supporting Centrino duo mobile technology.

A new product line was showcased at CeBIT, the w5 "fashion", a stylish notebook series, mainly focused on the women's market which is beginning to expand.

W5F. A new laptop equipped with the latest dual core technology. The overall aesthetics of the W5F are complemented with excellent performance.

Stylish design for modern sophistication.

This is not a dossier, it's the new laptop series from Asus which looks like a woman's handbag

W3 Series. An industrial design masterpiece. With dual core, upgraded audio for better video and gaming performance.

Click here to go to the next page of the Asus CeBIT presentation.

 

 

 

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36. ASUS - Page 2

Impressive and gleaming, superlatives that not only describe the Lamborghini notebook (above) but also the Lamborghini sports car which is seen in the background and below. A Lamborghini Gallardo, yellow like the notebook, was the highlight of ASUS' booth.

A variety of handhelds and skype phones were showcased during CeBIT 2006.

The Asus MyPal comes with built-in GPS functions and weighs less than 190g. The all new PDAs also come equipped with Wi-Fi and bluetooth technology.

The MyPal personal navigation device which operates in landscape mode.

 

The VENTO 7700. Very stylish PC case in blue and black. It offers a drive bay with space for 10 hard drives and one for 4 5.25" drives.

 

Click here to go to page 3 of the Asus CeBIT presentation.

 

 

 

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37. ASUS - Page 3

The WL 700GL. A real digital home can't do without a device such as this, offering convenient and fast data access.
This device offers high speed wireless data transfer, data security and multimedia capabilities.

Silent Cool technology, included the large heatsink design which increases the heat exchange area for transferring heat away from the GPU.

Asus motherboards. Dual Everything.

This card is not only CrossFire ready, but also features the ASUS patented GPU-on-the-back. Reversecool. technology which delivers high efficiency cooling at 0 DB.

This is the Cooling "Square" where Asus presented its cooling systems which provide maximum cooling efficiency and excellent operation.

This is just a small presentation from the Asus booth. The company showcased numerous products and technologies including LCD Monitors, servers and server boards, wireless and networking solutions, handhelds, notebooks, chassis and PSU, cooling solutions, optical drives and more than 25 new motherboards. We left the booth impressed and grateful for the hospitality extended to us by ASUS' managers and staff, who did their best to show and demonstrate each feature of their wide product range.

 

 

 

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38. XFX

We visited XFX's booth in Hall 23. Sports posters, boxing bags... the atmosphere was generally, sporty we would say.

The 7900GTX is the flagship of the new card series.

Key features:
▪ NVIDIA® SLI™ Ready (NVIDIA SLI-certified versions only.)
▪ Full Microsoft® DirectX® 9.0 Shader Model 3.0 support
▪ True high dynamic-range (HDR) lighting support
▪ NVIDIA® PureVideo™ technology* (*Supported video software is required to experience certain features. Go to www.nvidia.com for more details.)
▪ Built for Microsoft® Windows Vista™
▪ Dual dual-link DVI supports two 2560x1600 resolution displays
▪ NVIDIA® CineFX® 4.0 engine
▪ NVIDIA® Intellisample™ 4.0 technology
▪ NVIDIA® ForceWare® Unified Driver Architecture (UDA)
▪ NVIDIA® nView® multi-display technology
▪ PCI Express® support
▪ OpenGL® 2.0 support

As with most of the XFX cards, the 7900GTX will be available in different Memory and Core clock frequencies from 1.6GHz to 1.8GHz and 650MHz to 700MHz respectively.

The 7900GT will also available in more than one version, also with different Memory and Core clock frequencies.

The Revo64 is a new family of ATA and Serial-ATA storage accelerator PCI adapter cards based on the Revolution storage processor from Netcell Corporation. The Revo64 storage accelerator card, features a revolutionary new 64-bit RAID engine, offering for the first time, a mainstream storage processing solution with the simultaneous benefits of both RAID 0-class performance and RAID 5-class data protection.

Revo64 is specifically designed to overcome the limitations of traditional RAID technology and provide a solution for today's demanding storage environments, offering fast Serial ATA storage performance for bandwidth-intensive desktop, workstation, and media server applications. Revo64 delivers high-end performance with low-cost drives, while providing enterprise-class security for data and content.

Great products from XFX but we think the highlight for this year were the two beautiful girls in hot shorts!!! Well done XFX...

 

 

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39. Intel

Intel's booth at CeBIT

CDRinfo visited Intel's booth at CeBIT, Hannover and met with Mathias Raeck, PR Manager for EMEA and Christopher Walker, Director of Microprocessor Product Marketing for Intel. In the picture below is a general view of Intel's booth.

Mr. Walker explained Intel's plans for Intel's new micro-architecture that will be more energy efficient by using 65 nm production (compared to 90nm currently). The official name of this new micro-architecture will be the Intel Core Micro-architecture.

Apart from being energy-efficient, the new micro-architecture will feature "multi-brained" processors. It will be developed in three categories: desktop, mobile and dual Processor servers. It should be available by third quarter, revealed Mr. Walker. The new micro-architecture will use a shared memory cache and will delegate the whole cache through a single core.

Mr. Walker also outlined Intel's forthcoming plans for the mobile industry, with a 40% expected jump on the market and a 40% power reduction. Intel announced at CeBIT its new Ultra Mobile PC (UMPC) platforms from Asus, Founder and Samsung.

In the server segment, the company is planning an 80% increase in the performance and a 35% power reduction. Power consumption is a main issue for Intel that will focus on bringing out more energy efficient products by developing intelligent power saving technologies that turn on specific "modules" when they are needed, and off when they are not.

For desktops, they will try to incorporate new fanless designs (passive cooling) to maintain quiet operation and again, low overall power consumption.

At its booth, Intel was showcasing some of its motherboards for PCs and servers, as seen in the pictures above.

Above, the Intel-branded BMW Sauber Formula 1 race car, admired by all visitors to Intel's booth.

Intel's booth at CeBIT was located in Hall 2, stand C46

 

 

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40. Toshiba

Toshiba at CeBIT

Toshiba, the main backer of the HD DVD format, showcased the HD-XA1 player.

The player provides visual quality supported by leading-edge video compression technologies. The device includes the capability to support Advanced Navigation, also referred to as "iHD," offering interactive features.

The HD-XA1 is backward compatible, allowing users to continue to enjoy their libraries of current DVD and CD software.

The device can be connected to HDTV sets via a High Definition Multimedia Interface (HDMI) and output copy-protected HD content (through the HDMI output) in the native format of the HD DVD disc content of either 720p or 1080i.

Standard definition DVDs can be upconverted for display at 720p or 1080i (through the HDMI output).

 

 

 

 

 

 

Below, you can see the player's specifications, which may change by the time the device hits the market.

Below, are showcased some of Toshiba's new HD ready LCD TVs. Toshiba offers a complete line of HD TVs in a variety of dimensions ranging from a maximum of 47-inch screen to a a 15-inch screen.

In the picture above you can see the first high definition laptop computer with a HD DVD optical drive for the new generation of DVD discs and a high resolution display.

The Qosmio G30 notebook, initially announced at last year's CES and now showcased at the CeBIT electronics trade fair in Hannover, Germany, is the latest model under Toshiba's Qosmio range of high-end audio-video computers. The computer will retail for a price between 2,500 and 3,500 euros and will be available in all countries within a few weeks.

The G30's built-in HD DVD drive is expected to be region-free, which means that the drive will not check for region encoding, allowing it to play HD DVDs bought in the US and elsewhere. Actually, the HD DVD regional coding has not yest been decided, and the first releases will not feature any regional restrictions.

The G30 incorporates an HDCP-compliant HDMI output port and a 17in 1920 x 1200 TruBrite LCD screen ready for 1080p HD content. The display is driven by an Nvidia GeForce Go 7600 graphics chip with 256MB of video RAM. The notebook has a 2GHz Core Duo T2500 processor on board, 1GB of DDR 2 SDRAM, an 802.11a/b/g Wi-Fi radio and Bluetooth 2.0.

It has also twin analogue and digital TV tuners, a Dolby Home Theater-certified audio system based on Dolby virtual speaker technology, Dolby Pro Logic II decoding and Harman Kardon speakers.

 

 

 

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42. Nero p1

Nero at CeBIT

CDRinfo visited Nero's booth at the CeBIT show and met with Sales and Marketing Director, Patrick Peeters, and with Marketing Manager Sandra Jakob.

They outlined their company's data and showcased the upcoming products that Nero was announcing at this year's CeBIT.Nero, one of the leaders in digital media techology currently counts 310 employees and has three headquarters in Germany, California and Japan.

Mr. Peeters and Ms. Jakob demonstrated to CDRinfo Nero's new softwares and their features: Nero PhotoShow Deluxe 4, Nero Sipps Mobile, Nero Digital and Nero 7 Premium.

Nero PhotoShow Deluxe 4, a new photo and video software, is a complete system for organizing, managing and editing photos and videos. The software facilitates the search and classification of pictures by delivering, for instance, a tagging capability for simplified searches by people, places, comments and keywords.

It also allows users to enhance their PhotoShows by adding musical accompaniment, animated clip art, captions and frames from a library of hundreds of songs, pictures and templates included in the package. They can furthermore burn th content on a DVD or on their own free personal Web site.

Nero PhotoShow Deluxe 4 also provides tools to remove red-eye, as well as recompose and crop images. Users can also fine-tune color and saturation to compensate for the quality of aging photos or inaccurate colors in the originals. It can zoom and rotate video clips, and add special effects to both still images and video.

The new Nero PhotoShow Deluxe 4 solution will be available online and at retail stores in April and will sell for 30 Euros.

Mr. Peeters and Ms.Jakob then introduced Nero Sipps Mobile that targets mobile terminals beyond Nero Sipps, and Nero Sipps VoIP Server packages that were ultimately destined for desktops. They demonstrated the possibility of GSM/WLAN roaming using Nero Sipps Mobile.

 

 

The first version of the mobile software telephone offers all the usual telephony functions, an address book with direct dialing, lists of dialed numbers and missed calls as well as personalized ring tones. A server-based address book, a simple chat option, and a facility for creating and managing buddy lists will be added shortly. Nero Sipps Mobile supports Windows 2003 Mobile and Windows 2005 Mobile.

Calls with other VoIP subscribers will be free, while calls to the worldwide fixed or mobile network will be possible at affordable rates – all without the need for the obligatory subscription or cell phone contract. Porting to the Symbian operating system is also planned. Nero Sipps Mobile will be available in April.

Nero's presentation continues on the following page.


 

 

 

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43. Nero p2

Nero at CeBIT (page 2)

 

Mr. Peeters and Ms. Jakob introduced their newest Nero 7 Premium software Nero's all-in-one solution for the management of data, audio, video, photo and TV content.

The revised platform provides 18 new and updated applications. It is driven by Nero Scout, a full- text search engine that allows users to organize and manage all of their media content from a single application.

An integrated Electronic Program Guide (EPG) and the ability to access TV time-shifting, DVD and A/V file playback via remote control facilitates management of all digital media files. Nero 7 Premium also supports DVB (T, S, and C) and ATSC profiles. Nero 7 Premium will offer full support of the next-generation blue laser technologies in both Blu-ray and HD DVD formats.

 

The Nero executives also outlined to CDRinfo the company's detailed full support plans for the Blu-ray and HD DVD formats for the forthcoming products. A Blu-ray recorder was showcased at the Nero booth and we were given a presentation of its compatibility with Nero 7 Premium.

Nero 7 Premium includes Nero Digital audio and video compression technology and Nero Sipps, Nero's application for Internet telephony that offers free PC-to-PC calling within the Nero community.

Nero 7 Premium will be available in April online and at retail stores and will send for 70 Euros and Nero will provide monthly free updates.

Finally, w e were given a general presentation of Nero Digital, the MPEG-4 audio and video solution that is already available and is included in the Nero 7 Premium package

Nero Digital is completely based on MPEG-4 standards adding many DVD-like features such as multiple AAC audio tracks, surround sound, chapters, and subtitles.

It includes Nero Recode, which facilitates the direct import of most video file formats and non-copy protected DVDs for coding and/or transcoding in Nero Digital; Nero ShowTime, which plays all digital recordings (films, TV programs, home movies and DVD formats) in excellent picture and sound quality; and finally Nero MediaHome, which allows users to stream videos, music and pictures.

Nero's booth at CeBIT was located in Hall 2 at stand B20.

 

 

 

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44. E-net

E-net Distribution at CeBIT

At this year's Cebit, CDRinfo visited E-net Distribution's booth and met with Shaf Rasul the Managing Director and one of Scotland's richest businessmen who started the company back in 2000.

E-net Distribution is currently the largest and most important independent worldwide distributor of optical media such as blank DVD/CDs and other data-storage devices.

E-net is the exclusive distributor of market brands Datasafe, Datawrite, Bulkpaq, Ridisc, Titanium, Ridisc Xtreme, Tuffdisc and Rivision.

E-net’s main goals at this year's CeBIT were to meet existing clients and strengthen partnerships, showcase the latest products and create new business opportunities, explained Rasul.

To date, the distributor has concentrated on selling its products through independent retailers, but it is now ideally positioned in the market to take advantage of the latest developments in optical media technology and could move into retail outlets.

"Our brands are incredibly well known among the computer-literate 18-26 age group who consider them to be A-brands," said Rasul. "The older age group sees the likes of Sony and TDK as A-brands."

The stand that E-net had designed for the fair was exhibiting their latest and most advanced ranges of optical media, the Titanium and Ridisc Xtreme. These include the Titanium DVD-R 16x as well as the Ridisc Xtreme DVD-R 8x Full Face white printable.

E-net also premiered at Cebit the latest range of CD/DVD libraries from Datasafe and Ridisc designed to manage store and efficiently organize optical media.

The company also demonstrated the new labelling kits from Datasafe that use the latest software to create an advanced labelling system.

E-Net Distribution's stand at CeBIt was located in Hall 20, booth 22.


 

 

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