GW-71

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J@pan Inc Magazine Presents:
G A D G E T W A T C H
The Hottest Gadgets and Gizmos from Japan
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Issue No. 71

Thursday, August 22, 2002
(Long URLs may break across two lines, so copy to your browser.)

Name: Samsung SV-DVD6J
Category: DVD
Price: Open (but approx 39,800 yen)
Release date in Japan: September 1, 2002

The Gist: One of our faithful GW readers emailed me the other day
asking whether you could backup to VHS tape using one of the Panasonic
DVD-recorders I mentioned in an earlier newsletter. The answer was
yes, but there is another option and this new Samsung machine is it.
Rather than go hunting around electronics stores to get the right
cable or whatever to hook your DVD recorder to your VHS player, you
can pick up something like the SV-DVD6J, which is a combined
progressive-scan DVD player and Hi-Fi VHS deck. It comes with
composite and digital video hookups as well as analog and digital
sound outputs.
One of the weirdest 'features' Samsung claims for the SV-DVD6J is
that, if you connect the machine to two separate TV sets, you can
simultaneously play back a DVD and a video. Less weirdly, you can
watch a DVD movie while recording a TV program, of course, as well as
use the One Touch Copy Key to dub DVDs onto videotape. The video
deck bit has ultra-fast winding capabilities and is compatible with
both S-VHS tapes and that funky G-code technology for simple
programming.

More info: http://www.samsung.co.jp/news/japan/nj020819a.html

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information.
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Name: Olympus Camedia C-4100ZOOM
Category: Digital camera
Price: Open (but approx 60,000 yen)
Release date in Japan: September 6, 2002

The Gist: Now I'm going to admit to some bias here, or at least lust,
because Olympus has just announced the 'sequel' to the digital still
camera that I own and I think it's one of the very best out there.
So I'm in love. Actually, it's the sequel of the sequel of the sequel
to mine, because my camera is only a measly 2.1 megapixel baby,
whereas the new C-4100ZOOM boasts a massive 4 megapixels, gosh darn
it! If only journalists were actually paid in real money rather than
(admittedly very pretty) cowrie shells! Ah well, the camera has a
(35mm equivalent) 32-96mm, 3x optical zoom lens and that very
popular body design that makes it look just like a regular 35mm
camera. One nice inclusion is a 'virtual mode dial,' which complements
the regular, manual mode dial located on the top right of the camera
that switches between the various camera modes (full auto, shutter,
aperture and manual). This virtual mode dial is actually an onscreen
selector that appears on the LCD viewfinder and is negotiated using
the four-way direction switch on the camera's back and can be used to
select the six 'scene' modes (sports, night time et cetera), between
still image and movie recording and so on. The high-speed shutter is
even speedier than on its C-3100ZOOM predecessor, now up to 1/1000 of
a second. There's an external shoe for a strobe flash like Olympus's
own FL-40 and -- another great feature that comes in very handy if
you're a bit absent-minded like me and keep forgetting to recharge
batteries -- the camera can be powered by three regular alkaline
batteries.
I...want...one...So, if anyone from Olympus is reading this and would
like to bribe me with a free camera, I'm all ears.

More info:
http://www.olympus.co.jp/LineUp/Digicamera/C4100z/c4100z.html

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Name: Panasonic SV-AP10
Category: Digital photography
Price: Open (but approx 25,000 yen)
Release date in Japan: September 13, 2002

The Gist: The SV-AP10 is a Home Photo Printer that works with
Windows 98, SE/Me/2000 and XP. And what's a 'home photo printer?' I
hear you cry.
Well, it's a (vertically oriented) printer with built-in
SD and PC card slots for use with digital cameras and which doesn't
require an intermediary PC. These things have come on in leaps and
bounds in recent times and now output seriously high-quality prints
that rival anything you'd get from a specialist Fujifilm store.
They've also come down in price -- they used to demand around 10 of
those "Ichi-man en" notes and the output quality just didn't justify
that kind of wild spending. Now, however, the quality is right up
there, they're as cheap as a non-specialist PC color printer and
they're even starting to look pretty good. This one could be mistaken
for a snazzy new DVD player. It even comes with a remote control --
the thinking being that you're going to want to use it (via the
integral 'photo viewer function') to view your digipix on the TV
first, then, as you're looking at them, have the printer produce a
hard copy in front of your very eyes! Good thinking, that.

More info:
http://www.matsushita.co.jp/corp/news/official.data/data.dir/jn020819-
1/jn020819-1.html

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Name: Sony DVP-F25
Category: AV
Price: 25,000 yen
Release date in Japan: October 21, 2002

The Gist: The DVP-F25 is a super cool-looking top-loading slot DVD
player from Sony that is intended to stand upright, with the DVD slot
facing the ceiling.
It's a kind of an update to last October's DVP-F21 which was also
vertically oriented (i.e. it stood on end) but had the DVD tray loader
on the side of the machine. This is much smarter and way, way cooler
because it has the bonus comic feature of making everyone think you're
sticking your new movie into a toaster. Imagine your friends'
surprise, then, when the disc doesn't pop out a couple minutes later
burned to a crisp but, in fact, spins up in the machine and produces
movie-ness on your TV! Hours of fun.
Part of the F25's unique appeal is apparently that it can be
"positioned three ways", which makes a hell of a lot more sense when
you take a look at the picture of the machine. Sat on a circular
silver base/stand, the player can lie sideways on it, on end, or (and
I'm assuming this is the third way) in the boring old regular way,
lying flat like your VCR. The DVD player has virtual surround sound
and is compatible with Dolby Digital and DTS, with a D1 digital
terminal for connection to your monitor, plasma display or whatever
else.
The F25 also has the much-loved and admired Sony Blue LED effect
going on near the base of the machine, which everyone and their dog
has copied since its debut on the PS2. The machine comes in silver and
white color variations and, released on the same day is the HT-K25, a
5.1-channel home theater system with an amp styled identically to the
DVP-F25 so they can be twins. Aaaah, kawaiiiiiii!

More info: http://www.sony.jp/CorporateCruise/Press/200208/02-0820

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STAFF
Written by: Max Everingham (max@everingham.net)
Edited by: J@pan Inc editors (editors@japaninc.com)

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