CRT gets flattened
For $1,499 you can buy what Mitsubishi claims is the world's first truly distortion-free, 22-inch flat-faced desktop monitor: the Diamond Pro 2020u. Using its Natural Flat technology, the company applied a polynomial curve to the internal screen surface and aperture grille, which "predistorts" the image. This compensates optically for the refraction of light passing through the CRT glass, which causes the concave effect some flat CRTs exhibit. Mitsubishi has also invented a proprietary glass system to replace the glass used in cylindrical CRTs. Monitor applications include detailed, graphics-intensive work where CRT-induced image curvature presents a problem.
Mitsubishi Display Products: Product code 4647
Dongle connects Jaz to USB
Computers with USB ports will soon be able to connect to Jaz(R) drives using a new USB dongle from Iomega. The adapter will be compatible with USB-enabled PCs running Windows 98 or Windows NT 5.0, as well as iMac computers. First-time Jaz users need to install software provided with the Jaz USB dongle. The system will then recognize the Jaz drive when it is plugged into the USB dongle, so users won't have to reboot before using the drive. The 2-Gbyte Jaz drive sells for $349 and also works with 1-Gbyte disks.
Iomega Corp.: Product code 4649
CD-RW drive speeds writing
A new CD-RW drive and software package from Verbatim (Charlotte, NC) enables 4x write, 4x overwrite, and 20x read with the company's 4x-qualified CD-RW media. The new Mitsubishi 4420 drive can store work in progress or other information that may need to be altered on Verbatim DataLifePlus CD-RW media for about three cents per megabyte. A quick format feature lets the drive format a 650-Mbyte CD-RW disk in less than 30 sec. "We focused on improving the performance of the two areas that users consider the biggest waste of time," says Verbatim's Jun Tsuchiya. "In addition to slashing the time people have to wait before they can begin writing to their CD-RW disks, we also sped rewriting and overwriting." The 4420 also works with CD-ROM and CD-R disks. The internal PC version costs $399; the Verbatim 4x CD-RW disk sells for $19.95.
Verbatim Corp., a subsidiary of Mitsubishi Chemical Corp.: Product code 4643
VR head tracker goes real time
InterTraxTM, a sourceless real-time head tracker for displays suits a variety of 3D applications, including gaming, education, and product marketing. A sampling rate of 256 Hz and an on-board processor that performs a sophisticated attitude-compensation algorithm result in smooth head movement by eliminating jitter, lag, and other distractions. Users can look up, down, and around through 360 degrees in a virtual world. And because InterTrax is not affected by electrical or magnetic interference, it can work close to monitors or large metal structures. The price is $845.
Intersense: Product code 4645
Flat-panel display goes 3D
Ever want to see what your design would look like in 3D without donning goggles? The Model 2012XL Virtual WindowTM 12.1-inch flat-panel display lets you do just that. The autostereoscopic viewing device lets viewers see both static and full-motion sterescopic 3D images in full color at a resolution of 1,024 x 768 pixels. It works with a variety of operating platforms, including Windows and Macintosh, and accepts S-Video and standard NTSC input signals. "The image jumps off the screen and bites you on the end of the nose," says Dimension Technologies President Arnold Lagergren.
Dimension Technologies Inc.: Product code 4644
DVD-RAM drive uses multiple media
The LF-D101 DVD-RAM drive from Panasonic switches between 650- and 780-nm-wavelength lasers and two objective lenses to meet specifications for writing to and reading from a wide range of optical disk formats. The $799 drive can read from disks currently accepted by CD-ROM, CD Audio, CD-R, CD-RW, and video CD drives, as well as PD, DVD-ROM, DVD video, and DVD-R drives. DVD-RAM disks from Panasonic provide a read/write capacity of 5.2 Gbytes on two sides; 2.6-Gbyte single-sided media are also available. The firm says its next-generation media will provide a single-side capacity of 4.7 Gbytes, and ultimately 15-Gbyte double-sided disks. The DVD Forum has approved the DVD-RAM format, and industry analysts project that 30 million units will be installed by the year 2000.
Panasonic Industrial Co.: Product code 4646
USB modem for Windows and Macs
The $99 SmartOneTM USB (Universal Serial Bus) modem from Best Data Products works with both PCs and Apple computers and made its debut at the recent MacWorld Expo in San Francisco. One of the first modems to support the increasingly popular USB standard, the external modem plugs into a computer's USB port. "Although users may be aware that Apple computers offer USB ports for peripheral attachment, they may not know that most recent PCs also include USB ports," says Bruce Zaman, company president. The device is compatible with both the V.90 and Kflex 56-kbps standards, and with the V.80 standard for videoconferencing.
Best Data Products: Product code 4648