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Paul Ridden

The 25 semi-finalists in this year's Design Lab competition have just been a announced by ...

This year's Design Lab competition from Electrolux has seen 1,300 entries from 17 countries flood in for consideration. The theme for 2010 is the "2nd Space Age" and the 25 semi-finalists have just been announced. Soon that number will be further reduced to just eight, who will then battle it out to try and win a wad of cash and the chance to work at one of the company's design centers. But before that happens, let's take a quick look at what's on offer.  Read More

Samson Technologies is about to release its smallest portable recorder to date, the Zoom H...

Samson Technologies is about to release its smallest portable recorder to date. The Zoom H1 Handy Recorder is capable of recording up to 24-bit/96kHz WAV or 320Kbps MP3 using its built-in or external stereo microphones, and has an easy-to-use hardware-based user interface, where all of the controls are placed within easy reach. It weighs just a couple of ounces, runs on one AA battery and records to microSD.  Read More

Murata has created the world's first waterproof, ultra-thin piezoelectric speaker for inst...

Waterproofing mobile devices such as phones, MP3 players and cameras is becoming ever more common. But devices sporting little holes to let the sound out pose a bit of a leakage problem. Rather than potentially reduce sound quality by covering them up, Murata has produced a tiny piezoelectric speaker which is itself waterproof.  Read More

Nokero's N100 weatherproof solar lightbulb could provide a clean, safe and affordable ligh...

As public consultation starts on ways to reduce and replace fuel-burning lighting around the globe, Nokero has announced a solar-powered LED solution aimed squarely at disaster areas and the developing world. The rugged, rainproof N100 is about the same size as a standard lightbulb but requires no electricity and offers users around two hours of bright light in exchange for a day's worth of sun.  Read More

Fairfield Circuitry's new Four Eyes Crossover Fuzz pedal doesn't just add distortion to an...

As well splitting a guitar input over three separate fuzz pots, the variable frequency control and resonance switch of Fairfield Circuitry’s new Four Eyes Crossover Fuzz pedal help make it one versatile fuzz box. It gives users more control over the tones produced, which range from the "extreme to relatively subtle; from super thin to ridiculously fat."  Read More

Sony's new A290 and A390 digital SLRs are available now for pre-order and share many featu...

A few weeks after the customary rumors spoilt everyone's surprise, Sony has confirmed the specs for its new entry level α290 and α390 digital SLR cameras. Both cameras feature a brand new grip design and share a host of features including a 14.2 megapixel sensor, SteadyShot in-camera stabilization, compatibility with Sony's Alpha mount lenses and user-friendly on-screen guides to help users new to digital SLRs. The α390 also benefits from a tilting LCD display with the option of live image preview.  Read More

Connected to a Toshiba laptop at this year's Computex

Call me old fashioned but when I see the comforting glow of a vacuum tube I know that I'm in for some sonic pleasure. And that's precisely the thinking behind the aim AS301DTS USB audio tube headphone amplifier. OK, so the vacuum tube doesn't actually work, it's designed that way to trigger the very mental connection I opened with. That done, the tiny device then promises to deliver bass-enhanced surround sound to just about any pair of headphones attached to it. Sweet.  Read More

The Kno will feature two connected 14.1 inch 1440 x 900 anti-glare capacitive touchscreen ...

Huge, heavy reference tomes are still a major part of modern study and research. If you've ever wished that those textbooks in front of you could come to life and offer a more engaging experience than just reading through reams of text, then the Kno could be what you're looking for. Weighing in at 5.5 pounds, the dual-screen electronic textbook will offer students access to a wealth of published educational material as well as wireless access to the internet and multimedia content such as high definition video. Just like with its paper cousin, the Kno will also allow for note-taking, highlighting and bookmarking.  Read More

Casio has released a couple of new cameras which aim to crash through common barriers that...

As Casio Europe notes, "the perfect moment pays no attention to ideal photo conditions." The company has released a couple of new cameras which aim to crash through common barriers that stand in the way of good photos, such as moving objects in the distance or poor lighting conditions. Wide-angle lenses and mechanical image stabilization have been included on both new additions, the EX-H5 benefiting from 10x optical zoom and the EX-FH25 combining high speed technology with a new "high sensitivity CMOS sensor" for quality shots.  Read More

The OPC combines a 15W per channel stereo amplifier with a personal computer

At last, a product is on the horizon which combines two of my passions - playing guitar and fiddling with computers. Renowned amplification specialist Orange Amps has just announced the forthcoming availability of its OPC. Users will not only get a genuine 15W per channel stereo Orange guitar amplifier, but also a fully working personal computer running Windows 7, with some top music software thrown in for good measure.  Read More

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