The Surface Pro 2 may not look very different, but it comes with a number of internal improvements worth a gander.
See on www.techradar.com
We now know the release date, price, and specs of the Sony PlayStation 4. Read our updated hands-on first take for everything you need to know about the console, including a comparison to the Xbox One.
The PlayStation 4 is almost here.
Sony’s next-gen gaming console will hit stores in the US on November 15 at a price of $399. That price undercuts Microsoft’s Xbox One — also arriving in November — by $100.
The US launch will be followed by a European release on November 29. The console will cost £349 in the UK, and 399 euros on the Continent.
Along with the console, Sony has also confirmed a large list of PS4 games due to be released before the end of the year.
See on reviews.cnet.com
“BlackBerry needs a new smartphone for the mass market, and the BlackBerry Q5 is its attempt to deliver. Cheaper than the Q10, though offering another sturdy QWERTY keyboard for text-addicts, the Q5 pares back the specifications (and, it has to be said, the design) to boost the BlackBerry 10 line-up by 50-percent.”
See on www.slashgear.com
Canon has announced the EOS 70D, a mid-range SLR for enthusiast photographers. Its headline feature is a brand-new 20.2MP ‘Dual Pixel CMOS AF’ sensor which splits every single pixel into two photodiodes for on-chip phase detection, promising vastly improved autofocus performance in live view and movie mode. It also gains the 19-point AF module from the EOS 7D for viewfinder shooting, touchscreen control via its fully articulated 3″ LCD, and built-in Wi-Fi for image sharing and remote camera control from your smartphone or tablet.
The 70D be available at the end of August for £1079.99 / $1199 / €1099 body only, £1199.99 / $1349 / €1249 with the EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM lens, and £1399.99 / $1549 / €1499 with the EF-S 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM lens.
Just posted: Our hands-on preview of Canon’s latest mid-range SLR, the EOS 70D.
See on www.dpreview.com
Last year, Sony overhauled basically its entire line of cameras from the very bottom to tippiest top. Surprisingly, the most exciting of the bunch weren’t mirrorless cameras or DSLRs, but fixed-lens Cyber-shots: The RX100, a point-and-shoot superior to all others, and the RX1, a compact full-frame sensor camera priced for professionals. Sony’s expanding on its success on both cameras with some well-considered fine-tuning.
What we’re looking at here are the Sony Cyber-shot RX100 II (or M2), which at $750 will cost $100 more than the RX100, the and the Sony Cyber-shot RX1R, which at $2800 costs exactly the same as the RX1. Both are available for pre-order using the links above. The older cameras will remain in the line as before.
The key differences between the RX100 and RX100 II are a completely new 1-inch Exmor R image sensor, Wi-Fi and NFC connectivity, as well as a new tilting three-inch LCD display and a new hot shoe.
The former two additions result in visible cosmetic differences to the camera. The tiling LCD adds only slight thickness to the RX100’s body but makes it easier to see the screen in certain siutations. Don’t worry, This remains the same awesome pocketable shooter as before. Same super-fast f/2 lens.
Sony also added a “multi-interface shoe” on top for attaching external flashes other accessories to the camera.
The new Exmor R sensor is a lovely example of “trickle-up” technology. Exmor R sensors are “back-illuminated”, which basically means the traditional sensor architecture has been reworked so that the electronics sit behind the photo-sensitive diodes, allowing more surface area for actually capturing light.
Until now, the Exmor R design has been used only for small sensors in smartphones and junky point-and-shoots because Sony just couldn’t figure out how to manufacture these sensors larger. Until now. This one-inch sensor is a first, and Sony claims it’ll be up-to 40-times more light sensitive that the RX100’s one-inchers. That’s impressive.
There are no surprises about the camera’s Wi-Fi sharing capabilities, but it’s a nice addition to an already loaded camera. This NFC chip inside, however is new, and enables touch sharing between compatible devices, which actually sounds like a brilliant idea.
The main issue we might take with this camera is price. $650 was already a lot of money to pay for a point-and-shoot camera targeted mostly at a mainstream audience. But $750? Sheesh. Most of the cameras you’d consider competitors—like the Canon S110—are priced under $500
The RX1, was a superbly awesome camera that no-normal soul can afford. The image quality is unrivaled by a camera that size, but at the same time, the fixed focal-length f/2 lens that makes the compact size possible is also quite a limitation. The RX1R option is really a modified version of the former with no optical low-pass filter, which is exactly the kind of change people interested in this camera might consider important.
Without getting to far into the science, cameras use low-pass filters to avoid ripply moire patterns and other distortions that might occur because of the patterned design of image sensors. These days, though, many manufacturers are confident enough in their camera designs to leave the low-pass filter on.
What’s the difference you say? Well, when you’re using a professional full-frame image sensor like the one in the RX1, pixel peepers will point out that a low-pass filter keeps a sensor from realizing the true potential of its resolution. And sure enough, Sony showed us samples taken with both the RX1 and RX1R, and the new model had better details in some intense situations.
Sony Cyber-shot Rx1R
• Sensor: 24 MP, full-frame Exmor CMOS
• Processor: Sony BIONZ
• ISO Range: 100-25600
• Lens: Carl Zeiss 35mm f/2
• Display: 1.2 million-dot fixed LCD
• Video: 1920 x 1080 (60, 50, 25, 24 fps), 1440 x 1080 (30, 25 fps), 1280 x 720 (30 fps), 640 x 480 (30, 25 fps)
• Price: $2800
See on: http://gizmodo.com
It was only a matter of time before Sony jumped on the phablet bandwagon. And that day is today. The mobile maker has just announced the Xperia Z Ultra: a frankly gigantic addition to its smartphone line-up that packs a 6.4″ full HD display. This phone is so big that one of the accessories Sony is lining up is a slender Bluetooth handset for taking calls — i.e.so you can leave the whopping slab on the table.
Sony is following in the footsteps of Samsung, with its Galaxy Note devices but obviously it didn’t say that. Pierre Perron, president of Sony Mobile Comms for NW Europe, said the mobile industry has seen “increasing consumer demand for larger screens”, adding: “The big screen segment is one of the fastest growing segments.”
The LTE/4G Xperia Z Ultra slots into Sony’s line-up between its Xperia Z high end smartphone, announced earlier this year at CES, and its Xperia Z Tablet.
The Xperia Z Ultra is big across the front, but very slender around the waist: at just 6.5mm thin.
Sony’s head of global product design said the designers are approaching the limit of how thin they can make phones. ”You can’t make the phone any thinner because of the connectors — we’re at the point we’re going to have start working on connector technology,” he said.
The overall look of the Z Ultra continues the Xperia Z and Tablet Z design language, with the same blunt-edged, high gloss slab form. It’s also waterproof and dustproof, as the Xperia Z is.
The display is full 1080p HD, and incorporates Sony’s Bravia TV display technology — including its Triluminos tech, which it said supports a greater range of colours, with natural shades, and also its X-Reality technology for improving the viewing experience of low res video.
Under the hood, the Xperia Z Ultra is powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 2.2GHz quad-core chip. Its rear camera is 8 megapixels.
Sony’s phablet supports stylus interaction — Sony said “any pencil” can be used on the screen, rather than requiring a dedicated gizmo to poke it. Sony has also created a software keyboard designed for the larger phablet form to support one handed-typing.
The phablet is due to launch “later this year”. There’s no word on pricing as yet, or specific market availability.
Also today, tacked on at the end of the press event — entirely overshadowed by the attention being lavished on the Xperia Z Ultra — Sony announced a new smart watch, with the unimaginative name of SmartWatch 2.
Sony has been dabbling in ‘smart watches’ for years – literally – and made a point of trash-talking competitors who ‘may or may not be launching a smart watch’.
Sony’s new SmartWatch 2 can run a handful of dedicated Android apps, including Facebook and Twitter, plus a call handling app, email, Gmail, a music handling app, weather, Runtastic, a new aggregator app and a few others. The watch can also be used to remote control apps running on another Sony smartphone, by, for instance, being used to take a photo from the phone remotely without having to tap the phone’s screen.
Hardware wise, it has a 1.6 inch Transflective LCD display, which Sony says is designed for improved visibility in sunlight. The display has apparently been “optimised” over Sony’s prior SmartWatch, now rocking a resolution of 220 x 176 pixels. The watch itself is comprised of aluminium and plastic, and take a standard 24mm watchstrap.
Battery life — which remains the biggest hurdle to smart watch success — is good for three to four days “typical usage”, according to Sony, or five to size days low usage.
There’s no word on pricing as yet. Sony said the SmartWatch 2 will be available worldwide from September.
See on: http://techcrunch.com
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