J at pan Inc Magazine Presents:
G A D G E T W A T C H
The Hottest Gadgets and Gizmos from Japan
Issue No. 256
Friday October 13, 2006
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Name: Pioneer HDD Raku Navi
Price: 210,000 yen ~ 325,500 yen
Release date in Japan: Late October 2006
The Gist: Pioneer is letting lose several new models of
their "HDD Raku Navi" series of in-car navigation systems.
All five models have a 234 x 480 dot 7" widescreen LCD and
30GB hard drive.
At the very bottom of the pack are the "AVIC-HRZ88" and
"AVIC-HRV22," each priced at 210,000 yen. Either model
comes with the 7" widescreen LCD, DVD-Video playback, CD,
WMA, MP3, and HDD navi compatibility, as well as an analog
TV tuner. If you're looking for a digital tuner, you have
to hit up the "AVIC-HRZ88G" or "AVIC-HRZ99G," where the
latter also offers MiniDisc playback.
Now that we have the variations out of the way, let's get
on to some of the features common to all units. "Arrow Guide"
is a new navigation feature that will automatically display
large arrows on the screen telling you what direction and
when you should turn as you approach intersections.
"Target Map" also offers detailed information about
The 30GB hard drive can be used to store your favorite
tracks through the "Music Server" feature, where a single
button push will rip CDs in the ATRAC3 format. If you have
an iPod, you can pick up the "CD-IB10" adapter for another
10,500 yen and connect your iPod to the system to access
its music and other features.
More info: http://pioneer.jp/press/release556-j.html
Name: Sony MDR-D777SL
Price: 24,675 yen
Release date in Japan: Already available
The Gist: Sony's new "MDR-D777SL" headphones are foldable
headphones that feature a 40mm "HD Driver Unit." This unit
allows the headphones to reproduce sounds at a much wider
range than standard headphones. 8Hz all the way up to an
almost useless 80kHz. Yes, unfortunately most adult humans
can hear a maximum of only 16-20kHz. In fact, even your dog
will only respond to frequencies as high as 30kHz.
But if you for some reason must experience absolutely
everything sound waves have to offer, look no further than
the D777SLs; they're amongst the cheapest headphones with
such a frequency response. They have a maximum input of
1500mW, and a 1m extension cord is included.
More info: http://www.ecat.sony.co.jp/avacc/headphone/acc/index.cfm?PD=25427&KM=MDR...
Name: Hitachi HMR-1
Category: Portable audio recorder
Price: 25,200 yen
Release date in Japan: Late November 2006
The Gist: The "HMR-1" is a new portable CD player with an
integrated MP3 encoder. It's an interesting device; you put
a CD in the drive, an SD card in the slot, and MP3 files
will be created on the SD card by ripping the contents of
whatever is in the CD drive.
The HMR-1 can record at 192kbps, 160kbps, 128kbps, or 64kbps.
SD card support goes as high as 2GB. The most attractive
use of the HMR-1 is being able to rip CDs to MP3 without a
computer. Since it's also equipped with a line-in jack, you
can record MP3 songs from other devices such as MD players
or iPods. It can also play MP3 files, whether they're inside
the SD card or inside some device attached to the HMR-1's
More info: http://www.hitachi.co.jp/New/cnews/month/2006/10/1005.html
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Written by: Liam McNulty
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