Here are a few of CNET Reviews' favorite items from the past week, including the Dell XPS 15z laptop, the Motorola Droid X2, the Asus Eee Slate EP121, and more.
Aiaiai Tracks Headphones
Here's our weekly roundup of the new products CNET reviewers liked best.
Aiaiai Tracks Headphones w/ mic (black)
Editors' rating: 4 out of 5
The good: The innovative Aiaiai Tracks headphones combine a broad sonic range with a built-in microphone for hands-free calling, and the clever microadjusting rail system improves comfort.
The bad: The thin steel headband is susceptible to nicks and chips, and we're apprehensive about its long-term structural durability.
The bottom line: The affordable Aiaiai Tracks push headphone design forward with an unobtrusive aesthetic. They sound as wonderful as they look and deserve your consideration if you're shopping for a new pair.
The good: The Denon AVR-1912 is the most full-featured AV receiver we've seen at this price, with built-in AirPlay for Apple's iOS products and six HDMI inputs. Its networking features also include DLNA compatibility and several streaming media services, such as Rhapsody and Pandora. And its sound quality is just a little better than the competing Pioneer VSX-1021-K.
The bad: The GUI can look pretty bad if your HDTV has mediocre standard-definition processing. Denon also doesn't offer a Wi-Fi dongle, so you'll need to use a workaround if you don't have Ethernet in your living room. And we would have preferred one of those six HDMI ports to be on the front panel.
The bottom line: The Denon AVR-1912 gets our Editors' Choice Award in the midrange AV receiver category, with built-in AirPlay, outstanding sound quality, and six HDMI inputs.
The good: The ThinkPad Edge E220s has an excellent balance of size and performance, with a great keyboard and touch pad and all the necessary ports in easy-access positions.
The bad: Despite its low-voltage processor, the E220s has worse battery life than other ultraportables, such as the Samsung Series 9.
The bottom line: Balancing between ultraportable and full-size laptop, the 12-inch ThinkPad Edge E220s offers an exceedingly compact computing experience matched by an upscale design, marred only by subpar battery life.
The good: The 2011 Dell Inspiron 15R starts at just $499, and includes modern features such as second-gen Intel Core i-series processors, USB 3.0 ports, and an HD Webcam, along with optional swappable lids.
The bad: The Inspiron 15R's bulky body is heavy, and its battery life is a big letdown. Adding optional extras makes it nearly as expensive as a laptop from Dell's premium XPS line.
The bottom line: Dell's Inspiron 15R is an attractively priced budget consumer laptop with a welcome set of up-to-date features and design options, but beware of the cost of customizations.
The good: With the HP Officejet 100 Mobile Printer, HP improves on its original mobile printer design with increased output speeds, Bluetooth wireless printing, and flexible connection options for traveling professionals.
The bad: The ability to print anywhere comes at a premium cost.
The bottom line: The HP Officejet 100 Mobile Printer is a useful accessory for working on the road. The convenience comes at a premium, but its quick prints, wireless access, and rechargeable battery make it worth the cost.
The good: Fans of 7-inch tablets will appreciate the HTC Flyer's screen quality, durable construction, HD video recording, and unique features, such as digital pen compatibility and HTC's Sense UI customization.
The bad: The Flyer is small, thick, and pricey, and isn't running Google's Android 3.0 tablet OS. Its most unique feature, the Magic Pen, may not come included and is expensive to replace.
The bottom line: The HTC Flyer puts a new spin on the 7-inch Android tablet, but its high price and smartphone-style OS are a tough sell next to its bigger, cheaper Honeycomb kin.
The good: The Sony Ericsson Xperia Play ships with Android 2.3 Gingerbread without a complicated overlay. It has a slide-out game pad that makes gameplay more immersive, and it comes preloaded with popular game titles like Crash Bandicoot and Asphalt 6. Features include a 5-megapixel camera plus a front-facing camera, Wi-Fi, and GPS.
The bad: The Sony Ericsson Xperia Play's touch-screen gaming controls are not as responsive and precise as we would like, photo quality is average at best, and it lacks an HDMI port and 4G LTE.
The bottom line: The Sony Ericsson Xperia Play is a significant step forward in mobile gaming, but it suffers from key hardware limitations.
The good: The V.I.O. POV.HD matches or surpasses our favorite HD sports cameras in video quality. The inclusion of a color LCD makes it extremely easy to frame shots, preview footage, and make minor edits on the go. The rugged construction of the recorder keeps your media safe in case of an accident.
The bad: The two-part construction and long connecting cable make the POV.HD much bulkier than the competition. The mounting options included in the box can be confusing and may require hand tools to set up.
The bottom line: If money is no object and you want the maximum flexibility from your HD sports camera, the V.I.O. POV.HD is one of the best. However, the considerable bulk and high price tag will likely deter most.