GW-271 -- The Hottest Gizmos and Gadgets from Japan

J@pan Inc Magazine Presents:


The Hottest Gadgets and Gizmos from Japan
Issue No. 271
Friday August 24, 2007
Subscribers: 9467

Featuring our Real Estate Special, Web 2.0 Marketing and more!

Name: SD-HDC032GT4, SD-HC016GT4, SD-MH008GA
Category: Flash memory card
Price: Open Price
Release date in Japan: January 2008

The Gist: It seems as though technology randomly got ahead of
itself with Toshiba's recent announcement of the impending
release of 32GB SDHC cards, 16GB SDHC cards, and 8GB microSDHC
cards. This was somewhat unexpected as finding even 4GB SDHC
cards still presents something of a challenge, let alone 8GB
cards. Now Toshiba have announced 32GB cards coming out in
the early part of next year.

For those of you not familiar with SDHC, it's an acronym for
'Secure Digital High Capacity', or the next generation of
everyone's favorite SD cards. Along with Sony's Memory Stick Duo
developed in conjunction with SanDisk, SD has essentially sealed
the coffins of competing flash memory formats like CompactFlash
and FujiFilm's xD-Picture Card (at least for common
applications). The original SD standard rather lagged behind
though, officially supporting cards only as large as 2GB. SDHC
was created to address these problems, especially the capacity
limitation, and SDHC cards now have a theoretical capacity of a
whopping 2048GB. Save your money. Of course, to use SDHC cards,
you'll need a device that supports them; devices with only "SD
1.0" support can't read the new cards.

Toshiba is also aiming to release 16GB SDHC cards as early as
October of this year, as well as 8GB microSDHC cards for your
mobile phone in January 2008. All of the cards are Class 4,
meaning they have a sustained write speed of at least 4MB per
second. Toshiba estimates that with the 8GB microSDHC card,
you'll be able to record about 57 hours of 1-Seg broadcasts on
your mobile phone, presuming it has such a feature. Expect the
32GB card to be about 80,000 yen, the 16GB card about 40,000 yen,
and the 8GB microSDHC about 20,000 yen when they're released.

More info:
Name: Buffalo BRHC-6316 series
Category: Peripheral
Price: USB 2.0 model: 78,540 yen, Serial ATA model: 73,290 yen
Release date in Japan: Early September 2007

The Gist: In last month's Gadget Watch, we mentioned an ongoing
format war between Blu-ray and HD DVD. This week Buffalo has
announced a product that sort of straddles the fence and offers
a middle ground between the two. The BRHC-6316 series of optical
drives, available in both external and internal versions, provide
both Blu-ray reading/writing and HD DVD reading in a single
device. Not bad for something that still manages to stay under
80,000 yen.

The list of supported formats is a mess of letters, so get ready.
For reading, the drives support CD-ROM/-R/-RW at 40x, DVD-RAM at
5x, DVD?R DL/-ROM DL at 8x, DVD?RW at 10x, DVD?R at 12x, DVD-ROM
at 16x, HD DVD-ROM/-ROM DL/-Video at 3x, BD-RE/-RE DL at 2x,
BD-ROM DL/-R DL 4.8x , and BD-ROM/-R at 6x. For writing, the
drives do CD-R at 40x, CD-RW at 24x, DVD?R DL at 4x, DVD-RAM at
5x, DVD-RW at 6x, DVD+RW at 8x, DVD?R at 16x, BD-R at 6x, BD-R DL
at 4x, and BD-RE/-RE DL at 2x. Put plainly, these drives support
reading any optical disc currently on the market and
writing any optical disc currently on the market besides HD
DVD. As we mentioned last week, HD DVD hardware seems to be
lagging a few centimeters behind Blu-ray hardware, which may be
the reason why LG Electronics (the manufacturer of the optical
drive itself) opted not to include HD DVD burning capabilities.

Hardware is worthless without software, so Buffalo is throwing in
'CyberLink PowerDVD 7.3 Ultra' for playing Blu-ray and HD DVD
movies, 'PowerPowerProducer4 DVD' for DVD authoring, and
'PowerBackup2' for file backup.

More info:
Name: Yamaha Digital Surround Projector YSP-4000
Category: Home Audio
Price: Open Price; estimated around 179,800 yen
Release date in Japan: Late October 2007

The Gist: Yamaha's latest "Digital Surround Projector" is the
YSP-4000. Like previous models, the 4000 features a series of 40
full-range units, each with 4cm diameters, and two 11cm
subwoofers. By utilizing the array of units, the YSP-4000 can
essentially project a 'beam' of sound to specific locations, even
bouncing these beams off walls and such, greatly enhancing its
abilities as a surround sound speaker. At least that's the
marketing pitch.

While the basic concept of the Digital Surround Projector has
remained the same since the first model, each new model obviously
offers some improvements. This new YSP-4000 adds two HDMI inputs,
an HDMI output, and 'Regza Link' for linking to Toshiba's 'Regza'
line of TVs. 'VIERA Link' for Panasonic TVs is also supported.

The inclusion of HDMI means connecting the unit to your system
should now be a no-brainer. Since HDMI is a single interface that
carries both digital video and audio signals, you simply use the
YSP-4000 as a "pass-through" device; you connect your Blu-ray
player, HD DVD recorder, video camera, or whatever to the
YSP-4000, then the YSP-4000 to your TV. As a result, you'll also
be able to automatically turn the YSP-4000 on or off when your TV
is turned on or off. The YSP-4000 can even handle video
upscaling; standard definition videos can be jacked up as high
as 1080i.

Five different beam modes are available: 'Intellibeam' which
automatically adjusts to the environment after about 3 minutes
of measurement and calibration, 'My Surround' that makes surround
sound possible in places where the beam effect isn't too great,
'5 Beam' for 5ch surround, 'Stereo+ 3 Beam' for when the speaker
is placed in a corner, and finally 'My Beam' that directs a
single monaural beam to a specific location so even quiet sounds
can be heard.

The decoder can handle Dolby Digital, DTS, AAC, Dolby ProLogic
II, and DTS Neo: 6.

More info:

Start a Company in Japan

Entrepreneur's Handbook Seminar 6th of October, 2007

If you have been considering setting up your own company,
find out what it takes to make it successful.
Terrie Lloyd, founder of over 13 start-up companies in Japan,
will be giving an English-language seminar and Q and A on
starting up a company in Japan.
This is an ideal opportunity to find out what is involved,
and to ask specific questions that are not normally answered
in business books.
All materials are in English and are Japan-focused.

For more details:

RidgeRunner Niseko
International Cricket Competition 15-17 September 2007

This is your invitation to three days of fun at an
international cricket tournament in Niseko being held to
the benefit of the Tyler Foundation for Childhood Cancer.

Cricketing legend Dennis Lillee will be attending the event
which is being co-hosted by the Higashiyama Prince Hotel and
includes two days of cricket, a golf match and charity
dinner dance and auction.
For more information, and the chance to win a
dinner with Dennis,

please visit
or contact Simon Jackson
(, 011-876-3704)


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