Able Planet @ CES 2014

At the very first CES BCCHardware attended (8 years ago) we got to meet with a brand new audio company called Able Planet. We knew from that very first meeting that Able Planet wasn't just another headphone company thanks to their much different approach to audio and every year at CES we look forward to stopping by and seeing what they've been up to.

At CES 2014 we saw a countless number of headphone makers showing off countless number of designs and colors but Able Planet isn't worried about colors and designs, they are all about the audio quality. We've had the chance to review numerous Able Planet headphones over the years and we've always walked away impressed with the sound quality.


Last year at CES 2013 Able Planet was showing off their newest product that promised to bring 4D sound to their headphones. Last year we got to see the prototypes but at this years CES the product is completed and we got a proper demo of the final product which Able Planet has called Linx Fusion. In addition to the audio signal, Linx Fusion adds a slight vibration to the sounds which allows the user to listen to audio at a lower decibel level yet the brain still processes the audio as if it was much louder. Adding a vibration might sound like a cheap gimmick, but the reality is that when done properly it can add an entirely new dimension to the audio and also can help prevent hearing loss over time as the audio does not need to be as loud as with other products. Hopefully I've done a good enough job trying to explain this product, unfortunately it might just be one of those things that you need to hear to really believe and if you're like me you will be very impressed.

Able Planet Linx Fusion Headphones

Check out more pictures in the gallery here - as well as more of our CES 2014 coverage here.

Nintendo's Next Gen to Use Free-Form Displays

Sharp has come up with some pretty cool technologies over the years and in fact the current 3DS uses a Sharp display to do the 3D magic. Well, Nintendo is a fan and Sharp's next awesome idea comes in many different shapes. "Free-Form" displays allow the panel to be cut to pretty much any shape to fit anywhere and will allow the next handheld device from Nintendo some freedom from the typical rectangle screen. It should be nifty. Stay tuned to E3 this year as it could be one of the highlights of the show.

Sharp's Free-Form Display technology is designed to allow for new shapes and sizes of screen, and the first client could be Nintendo. Japanese news agency Kyodo reports that the venerable video games company will be Sharp's first client for the LCD tech, which may be used in a new portable games console or the company's upcoming sleep-tracking device. According to one source, Nintendo is considering a doughnut-shaped screen with a hole in the middle.

Source: TheVerge

Kingston Brings 64GB DDR4 kits to CES 2015

Kingston brought some great stuff to CES this year with a new SDD drive, DDR4 RAM, a new M.2 form factor SSD, and a 7.1 channel gaming headset. The HyperX Predator PCIe is the new M.2 SSD that boasts a 1400 MB/s seq read speed and 1k MB/s seq write speed. Kingston was also showing off the HyperX Predator in 2.5-inch form factor as well which uses the Phison s10 controller which allows for speeds of 560 and 540 sequential read and write speeds.


Kingston Lineup


Next on the list is the HyperX Cloud 2 gaming headset that touts a USB DSP sound card in the microphone control unit. It allows for switching between normal operation or 7.1 channel virtual audio with the press of a button. From a short demo of the headset, gaming sounds pretty good with the 7.1 enabled, however music sounds much better with the 7.1 audio off. With the best saved for last, the new HyperX Predator DDR4 64GB RAM is claimed as the first to be produced using the official standard for DDR4. This ram can operate at 3000MHz and in quad-channel making this ram very beastly.

Big System


To check out more of our CES 2015 coverage, please check here and of course you can check out more pictures from the Day 3 of CES 2015 right here.

Ransomware for Linux

There is an expression "as useless as a button on an outhouse door" and that pretty much sums up the new ransomware that is circulating that affects Linux users. While there are a number of Linux users, the numer is pretty small. It seems as though this software was designed more to see if it was possible rather than affect a large number of users and make people a ton of money. It's rather pesky for sure, and if you're a Linux user - it might be a good idea to back up everything on a removable drive and keep it removed.

First, Linux.Encoder.1 encrypts all files in home directories and directories related to website administration. Then the Trojan recursively traverses the whole file system starting with the directory from which it is launched; next time, starting with a root directory (“/”). At that, the Trojan encrypts only files with specified extensions and only if a directory name starts with one of the strings indicated by cybercriminals.

Source: Dr.Web

Alienware Steam Machine Review

Alienware is one of the first companies that have tried to get behind the Steam Machine. They have a few different models to choose from that range from a Core i3 to a full-on Core i7. Prices range from a mere $449(USD) all the way up to $749(USD). All you are getting for your extra money is more RAM and a faster CPU. The GPU is the same through the entire lineup - and is not upgradeable. Neowin has a full review on the $549 mid-range version.

There's also an issue with viewing text on the screen. While trying DOTA 2, some of the fonts were so small during the tutorial that they were practically unreadable from the couch. Valve claims the box is for the living room and the "10 foot experience" (meaning distance from the TV to the gamer), but this is very clearly dependent on what games you decide to play, and the lack of standardization is hurting the Steam Machine.

Source: Neowin

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