Need a 3D display, mon? Try Zalman's Trimon

Subject: Displays | August 16, 2011 - 12:14 PM |
Tagged: zalman, 3d display

The Zalman Trimon ZM-M240W is the latest 3D display from a company once best known for pretty heatsinks.  They've preferred using passive glasses to create the illusion of depth on their monitors, something which attracts people who do not want to invest around $100 in a pair of active shutter glasses that may or may not work with some TVs and possibly give you a headache for the effort of trying.  X-bit Labs certainly approved of both the pricing and the lack of flicker from Zalman's new Trimon but pointed out that there are serious drawbacks in the viewing angle with passive glasses.  Check out their full review here.

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"Zalman continues on their own unique path releasing 3D monitors bundled with inexpensive and non-flickering passive glasses. They have indisputable strengths as well as bottlenecks. Read our review to find out more."

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Source: X-Bit Labs

New Solar Cell Enhanced LCDs Could Improve Mobile Device Battery Life

Subject: Displays, Mobile | August 12, 2011 - 04:51 AM |
Tagged: solar cell, mobile, lcd, display

According to Ars Technica, researchers at UCLA announced on Tuesday a new LCD screen containing photovoltaic cells that promises to reduce back-light energy waste and improve battery life on mobile devices.

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My N900 eats up battery with an hour of Angry Birds, but can go for two days with the display off. Where's my happy medium? 

The researchers have placed what they are calling polarizing organic photovoltaics inside the LCDs in such a way that light that is normally filtered out and blocked in areas to create the displayed images can now be (mostly) recovered. While the process does not result in 100% reclamation of energy due to energy loss during the conversion process(es) and heat given off by the back-light, in a mobile device any amount of energy that can be recovered is desirable. Ars Technica states that up to 90% of a battery’s power is used to power the back-light of the display. Further, of that percentage, up to 75% is lost to the polarizing layers. By infusing the polarizing layer with photovoltaic cells and reclaiming as much of the otherwise wasted light as possible, battery life could be dramatically extended.

Mobile devices are getting beefier multi-core processors and graphics chips, numerous wireless radio connections (4G, WiFi, Bluetooth), and large power hungry displays; however, battery technology advancements have been rather stagnant and flat. As a result of this, having to make processors, displays, and other components as efficient as possible to make up the difference of battery technology not keeping up with other advancements, interesting tweaks like the photovoltaic infused displays become that much more important.

Whether this particular technology will catch on and work as well as they claim remains to be seen; however it is nonetheless an interesting experiment. More data on the researchers’ project will be published in the Advanced Materials journal in September 2011. What are your thoughts on the idea?

Source: Ars Technica

ViewSonic Drives Display Innovation with New 3D Vision LED Monitor

Subject: Displays | August 1, 2011 - 01:11 PM |
Tagged: led lcd, 3d display

WALNUT, Calif. – August 1, 2011 – ViewSonic Corp., a leading global provider of computing, consumer electronics and communications solutions, today continues its leadership in display innovation with the new V3D245 – a 24-inch 3D, full HD (1080p) LED monitor that includes a built-in NVIDIA 3D Vision wireless emitter and NVIDIA 3D Vision glasses.

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Combining world-leading LED technology with extraordinary power-saving performance, this 24-inch (23.6-inch vis.) monitor offers a stunning 120Hz frame refresh rate and ultra-fast 2ms video response time, and HDMI 1.4 input making it ideal for delivering a truly immersive 2D and 3D entertainment and gaming experience. Paired with a 1920x1080 full HD resolution, 20,000,000:1 dynamic contrast ratio and 300 nits high brightness, users can expect great color accuracy and picture detail for unsurpassed 3D image quality.

The integrated NVIDIA 3D Vision wireless emitter gives users the flexibility to connect to an NVIDIA GeForce-equipped PC to play more than 550 3D games in full 1080p, 60 fps resolution, view 3D videos and photos, and stream 3D web content. Users could also choose to connect directly to the latest Blu-ray 3D players or PS3 consoles via the standard built-in HDMI 1.4 input. Additionally, the integrated two-watt SRS Premium Sound audio speakers provides consumers the ultimate multimedia entertainment display.

“Gamers, movie buffs and photo enthusiasts will love moving up to 3D. And there’s no better way to do so than with ViewSonic’s V3D245 3D monitor, with its built-in NVIDIA 3D Vision technology, which produces the most immersive and crystal clear 3D images,” said Phil Eisler, general manager of 3D Vision at NVIDIA. “Set-up is quick and easy. Simply connect the monitor to your NVIDIA GeForce graphics card, put on the included NVIDIA 3D Vision glasses, and start enjoying games, videos and photos in a whole new way.”

NVIDIA’s 3D Vision drivers support more than 550 video games in 3D, with more being continually added. In addition, 3DVisionLive.com hosts hundreds of 3D videos and thousands of 3D photos that can be seen with a free web browser and a 3D Vision system. YouTube also supports 3D Vision, with thousands of videos now available for viewing in stereoscopic 3D.

“Whether for work, play or media enjoyment, our new V3D245 monitor offers the highest level of compatibility with both PC- and console-based 3D content, and is ideal for delivering an incredible 3D experience,” said Erik Willey, LCD monitor and PC product marketing manager, ViewSonic. “By pairing our exclusive 120Hz, LED-based 3D technology with NVIDIA 3D Vision technology, we are able to deliver a new world-class level of performance that will shape the future of 3D gaming and entertainment.”

The V3D245 comes standard with ViewSonic’s strongest pixel performance guarantee and 3-year limited warranty. ViewSonic’s V3D245 3D monitor and included pair of NVIDIA 3D Vision active stereo 3D glasses and will be available in North America during mid-to-late August for an ESP of $499.

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Source: ViewSonic

More than just a monitor, Samsung's C27A750 27” LCD is a wireless station

Subject: Displays | July 26, 2011 - 02:58 PM |
Tagged: wireless, tn lcd, samsung C27A750, Samsung, 27

The Samsung C27A750 27” Central Station Wireless Monitor is a 27" 1080p TN LCD monitor which is intended to solve your wiring problems.  It sports HDMI and D-sub for video, along with a wireless USB 2.0 dongle but there are also a pair of USB 3.0 ports, a pair of USB 2.0 ports, a 3.5mm jack for speakers and a network port.  Essentially it mimics a multifunctional dock while also being a 27" monitor which can be connected wirelessly to a PC.  As positive as this multi-functional base sounds, Hardware Canucks were disappointed with its physical stability as the base is the same size as the 24" model.  Their testing revealed good points and bad points about the display and dock, perhaps the biggest being that you should not even consider gaming over the wireless connection.  As well, a 27" display at 1080p is not optimal but for use as a secondary display with a laptop, netbook or even smart phone the dock and wireless capabilities are impressive.

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"During this year's CES, Samsung debuted their Central Station technology which promised to combine an all in one connectivity and networking hub into a high performance monitor. This centralized approach will surely appeal to notebook, tablet and netbook users since it can expand screen real estate while eliminating the need to attach unwanted wires to an otherwise quick setup. One of the first products to feature Central Station technology is the C27A750 27” monitor."

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LG Unveils World's First Glasses-Free 3D LCD Display

Subject: Displays | July 16, 2011 - 10:54 AM |
Tagged: monitor, LG, lenticular display, 3d display, 3d

LG Electronics, maker of HD televisions, computer displays, and a myriad of consumer electronics devices unveiled a new glasses-free 3D monitor that claims to be the first display of its kind. Using a lenticular display and a built in webcam to automatically adjust the display by tracking eye movement in real time. Lenticular displays work by coating an otherwise 2D panel with an array of tiny lenses called lenticules that then direct light from the panel’s pixels into each eye. The brain then stitches the images together and interprets them as a 3D image. The passive 3D system (passive in the sense that active shutter glasses are not required) and eye tracking means that only one person will be able to experience the 3D effects at a time; however, that person will be able to view the image at a wider variety of viewing angles than otherwise possible without eye tracking.

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The 20" inch panel has been dubbed the DX2000, and will retail in Korea this month for $1,200 USD according to a LG press release. A wider release to other markets are expected later in the year, and the display model will be known as the D2000.

Source: Cnet Asia

Still in the market for a 3D display? Samsung has a set for you

Subject: Displays | July 8, 2011 - 01:36 PM |
Tagged: Samsung, 3d display, tn lcd, 1080p

Since the 3D market is not confusing enough Samsung has decided to implement their own way of displaying 3D images using shutter glasses, which is incompatible with NVIDIA's glasses.  On the plus side, as long as you have Samsung's glasses you will be able to display 3D from any source with any semi-modern graphics card.  The SyncMaster SA950 is a 1080x1920 TN LCD with a very reflective finish and comes with stylish active shutter glasses powered by a single lithium disk battery.  X-bit Labs put on the goggles and tried the 3D experience from both 3D sources and using the onboard processor to make 3D visuals out of 2D sources, with mixed but fairly positive results.

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"This time we are going to talk about a new 27-inch 3D monitor from Samsung that uses its own proprietary technologies for 3D imaging that work without drivers or any other additional software."

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Source: X-Bit Labs

D-Link releases WiDi adapter

Subject: General Tech, Displays | June 20, 2011 - 04:03 AM |
Tagged: widi, D-Link

There are a lot of benefits of having a home theatre PC but still one major drawback: having the PC by the TV. Intel has worked hard to find a solution and released the specification under the name “WiDi”, a wireless display specification that lets you share your monitor with an HDTV attached to a wireless receiver box. D-Link has just recently launched their WiDi receiver in the US with Canada coming next month; will WiDi start picking up market share with more capable devices?

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Why do network appliances these days look like pillows?

(Image from D-Link)

The D-Link MainStage (known as DHD-131 to its friends) has only a power cable to its name apart from your choice of video and audio connection to your TV or sound system. For choice of connection you have two video options and three audio options: on the video side you have HDMI for your high-resolution viewing and standard RCA for your standard definition devices; on the audio side you have optical audio or HDMI for surround and white and red RCA for stereo. Apart from a power button and a reset button that is the whole of this unit.

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Plastic case with on/off butty. Baby got back shots.

(Image from D-Link)

One thing that typically holds back other implementations of WiDi that I have seen, and I assume this is no exception, is latency. The slight lag when controlling a media program or browsing a website is acceptable however it would really hold back the use of a PC as a console replacement unless the video card is directly connected to the TV which is a definite shame but to be expected given the bandwidths over WiFi that we are talking about. If you happen to be interested in this solution, however, it retails for just under 130$.

Source: HotHardware

The Next Generation is 3D HD SMARTBoards

Subject: General Tech, Displays | June 12, 2011 - 05:56 PM |
Tagged: SMART, 3d

SMART has been making interactive whiteboards for quite some time now. An interactive whiteboard is essentially a giant writing tablet similar to a Wacom. This tablet is also a projector screen which is often wall mounted but could be mounted on a cart. SMART Boards attach to PCs by USB and could attach to video and audio out if you purchase one with an attached projector and speakers rather than use your own. Recently SMART announced and released their fifth generation product line complete with a projector supporting HDMI input and active 3D technology.

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IT’S LIKE I CAN TOUCH YOU!

(Image by SMART Technologies)

While I can see this useful for companies that are doing 3D technology during their company, investor, and vendor meetings it seems a little bit unlikely that active 3D will appear in the classroom. It seems quite difficult for me to imagine twenty to forty students each with their own active shutter 3D glasses atop the investment of the 3D interactive whiteboard itself. Also while it might be to support the 3D functionality of the projector it seems quite odd to include HDMI functionality and barely exceed 720p resolution (1280x800) in your highest-end projector.

If an interactive whiteboard is in your interest but were holding out until you can pop things out at your audience the new SMART boards were available since May 25th in North America and May 30th internationally. Prices range between $3000 and $4000 US, computer not included. If you already have a digital whiteboard but want a 3D projector upgrade that will cost just north of 2000$.
Source: SMART

Is the InFocus 55" a wall tablet? Do you want it anyway?

Subject: General Tech, Displays, Systems | June 11, 2011 - 03:31 AM |
Tagged: wall tablet, InFocus

InFocus is branding their 55-inch touch-screen TV with Windows 7 embedded as a “Wall Tablet”. The writers down at HotHardware seem to take offense to a 55-inch device being called a tablet and I must agree. My duration working in high schools and acquiring an education degree grew me well acquainted with SMART boards and this product definitely recalls those memories much more vividly than my experience playing around with tablet devices.

The problem with touch screens in schools is that every screen is treated like one thereafter.

(Video from BusinessWire)

It is quite obvious that InFocus spent quite a large amount of time developing their user interface to dress up Windows 7 as a more whiteboard friendly operating system. Their interface has a custom file browser with annotation capabilities, a custom web browser, a digital whiteboard application, and a video conferencing solution that can interface with open protocols such as Google Talk and more proprietary ones such as Cisco. The unit itself has a 720p video camera and a screen resolution of 1920x1080 with multiple touch recognition, something that most (but not all) SMART boards are incapable of.

It is highly unlikely that you will have one of these $6000 devices in your house unless you happen to require it for professional reasons. For those in the education, training, research, or corporate management fields: a device like this could make your life much easier particularly if you were already considering installing a mass of SMART boards for this purpose. They are expected to ship to interested customers in July.

Source: HotHardware

Swap your displays CCFL with LEDs

Subject: Displays | May 31, 2011 - 12:09 PM |
Tagged: hack, mod, ccfl, led, repair

Over at Hack a Day is a video and project log of an industrious fellow whose digital picture frame backlight bit the biscuit.  Instead of buying a new one he removed the dead CCFL and replaced it with a six dollar LED strip instead of an expensive inverter or lamp for the CCFL.  The project is not easy, especially if you wish to attempt this on a full sized monitor but there are tips and tricks that should help you on your way in the full post.

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"[Fileark] had the backlight on his digital picture frame go out one day. These are generally Cold Cathode Fluorescent Lamps which require an inverter to source the voltage necessary for proper operation. When they stop working, the inverter is usually to blame. Since that circuit is made up of pretty small surface mount circuitry, he decided to replace the backlight with LEDs rather than repair the inverter."

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Source: Hack a Day