The ability to play Blu-ray movies in OS X has been a bit of a sore spot for Mac users. When Blu-ray was being developed, Apple's presence as a supporter of the technology spurred much speculation and rumor that Mac users would be seeing native Blu-ray support in OS X. Unfortunately, to this date this has not happened, and Apple has progressively shied away from Blu-ray in support of alternative options like the iTunes store.
While Apple has claimed that the complex licensing for Blu-ray playback has been partly to blame for the lack of Blu-ray support, oddly the … Read more
Editors' note: The rules have changed slightly for this week's giveaway. Facebook component now included.
First off, two congratulations are in order. One goes to Nick C. of Chalfont, Pa., who won a Joby GorillaMobile Yogi and GorillaMobile Ori for iPad 2 in last week's Crave giveaway. The other goes to Josh B. of Metairie, La., who scored a $300 gift certificate to DIY site ShirtsMyWay the week before last.
And now, onto this week's giveaway!
Normally this combo would cost you $478.99, but we're giving it away gratis. So, how do you try to win? Well, if you've participated in this contest before, the rules have changed a bit, so please read them carefully. … Read more
Back at CES 2011, Orb announced a $20 Blu-ray disc to come in February that would add streaming-media functionality to older Blu-ray players. After several delays, the company has finally released a Blu-ray disc that will work exclusively with the PS3, with the generic Blu-ray player version still "coming soon."
We're familiar with Orb's products from the Orb TV and Orb MP-1, and we took the PS3 disc for full hands-on spin over the weekend.
Right off the bat, the appeal of Orb's software on the PS3 isn't quite as clear as it is on an older Blu-ray player. The PS3 already has several excellent built-in streaming media services, including Netflix, Hulu Plus, Vudu, and MLB.TV, without any need to use a disc-based workaround. However, there are still holes in the PS3's streaming offerings and Orb's software can add high-profile services such as free Hulu content (no need for a Hulu Plus subscription), Amazon Instant, and Pandora. … Read more
Quadraphonic was the first music surround format, and the first to bite the dust. That was in the 1970s. The SACD and DVD-A formats debuted at the dawn of the century, promising vastly improved sound quality over the CD, and both formats flopped. Their futures looked bright, so why did they fail?
Of course the record labels knew selling a new format on the basis of sound quality was a risky business, so they tacked on 5.1 surround sound. There were millions of households in the early 2000s with multichannel home theaters, so selling new music surround formats looked … Read more
We're moving away from watching video on discs in general, but Blu-ray is helping stem that erosion somewhat. Hmm, doesn't sound like a very compelling argument to get on the Blu-ray bandwagon, until you consider that the best Blu-ray players are also streaming powerhouses that move you into the future of watching. Here are our Top 5 that deserve a place in your home video stack today and tomorrow.
You can find all of CNET's reviews of Blu-ray players here.
You can get a decent Blu-ray player for less than $100 these days, but many models cost much more. Are they truly better? What do they offer to justify the higher price?
And most importantly, are they worth the extra money? … Read more
Back in 1959 "Ben-Hur" won 11 Academy Awards, including Best Motion Picture, Best Actor, and Best Director. You'd figure a movie like that would be out on Blu-ray, but it has remained on our "Top 30 movies not out on Blu-ray" list for the last couple of years.
That's about to change, as Warner Bros. has announced that "Ben-Hur" will make its debut on Blu-ray on September 27 as the "Ben-Hur 50th Anniversary Ultimate Collector's Edition."
Your HDTV, HD cable box, Blu-ray player, and even most DVD players and receivers will "upconvert," or scale, a standard-definition image to fill the screen of an HDTV.
Despite the marketing hype, this doesn't make SD look like HD, but it can make it look better than regular SD. The better the source, the better your TV will look. So how well a piece of gear can make standard definition appear is one of the major performance differences between two products. Recent TVs and Blu-ray players have gotten quite good at this.
The irony is, as good as scalers or upconverters have gotten, they're becoming obsolete.… Read more
Laptop news keeps coming this week, and Acer's latest is a funky one indeed. The newly-announced Acer Aspire Ethos is a new laptop line that's aimed squarely at the high-end over-$1000 market, with a very unique twist: its touch pad detaches and becomes a wireless remote.
That's right: a remote. The design's enough to mildly surprise even the most jaded laptop expert. While the rest of the Ethos chassis is downright staid, that wide multitouch pad's transformation into a separately functioning wireless remote complete with LED-backlit controls might qualify as one of the most … Read more