Currys collaborates with fashion designer

We do not usually talk fashion here at LG Towers but London Fashion Week is upon us. To the men reading this, that means catwalk models stomping up and down the runway and you laugh uncontrollably at the insane clothes. If I said there is a dress made entirely of just HDMI cables, would you believe me? In the run-up to London Fashion Week, Sandstrom collaborated with knitwear extraordinaire, Craig Lawrence to make just such a dress. Sandstrom is a Scandinavian technology brand known for their design, available exclusively at Currys and PC World. Craig Lawrence is a rising star in the fashion world and known for his complex knitwear.

Sandstrom

So what has this got to do technology? The Sandstrom Cable Knit dress was hand knitted with 500 metres of premium Sandstrom gold series HDMI cables. Currys says that HDMI cables are ‘unsung heroes and can make the difference between a good viewing experience and a great one.’ There are three series of HDMI cables at Sandstrom. The Black series is the entry level made with standard copper. The Silver series is the mid-level and raises the transfer rate and made from oxygen free copper. The Gold series the premium and has the highest transfer rate and can transmit the highest resolutions including 4k x2k. The copper is treated making it oxygen-free thermal conductivity copper.

Ever since the introduction of HDMI, there has been the never-ending debate of does the expensive HDMI cables offer better picture? I believe you get what you pay for. The difference may be negligible in some cases but put them side by side and you will spot the difference.

The Black series starts from £39.99. The Silver series starts from £69.99 and the Gold Series starts from £84.99. If you would like to see the Sandstrom cable knit dress, it will be going on tour around Currys store in the UK. It is currently at the Currys Tottenham Court Road Store near Warren Street Station for a few days. Catch it while you can!

TruLink Wireless USB to HDMI kit and swivel cables

CablestoGo continue their lifelong vendetta against Cables with their latest addition to the war on cable tangle. The TruLink Wireless USB to HDMI kit has a mission statement as clear and easy to understand as its name. All you have to do is pop the USB transmitter in to your PC or Mac and attach the HDMI receiver to your screen of choice and the Wireless USB to HDMI kit will make sure they play nice with each other.

TruLink-Wireless-HDMI

It’s not quite the one button simplicity of Apple’s new-ish Airplay standard but has many advantages. For one Airplay doesn’t yet work from desktops for reasons beyond me (I know you can buy software to enable it but this seems ridiculous). For another, whilst many newer AV receivers are set top boxes back Airplay, many more don’t. Everything has HDMI (well not everything but you get my drift).

The TrueLink Wireless USB to HDMI kit can beam wireless audio and video from about 30 feet line of sight (unless you have a giant living room filled with rocks you will probably be ok with it). You can also wall mount it with the adaptors provided. Sadly the you can only beam videos over in 720p but the upside of this is smooth and reliable picture quality.

The TrueLink Wireless USB to HDMI adaptor is out now from Amazon and CabletoGo for £269.98

Also out now from CablesToGo is a new twist on an old classic. Not your grandfather’s cable, the new swivel connection cables have a unique 270 degree connector that enables you to position them in weird and wonderful ways and bend them to your will. The cables also feature detents every 90 degrees to preserve signal integrity.

The swivel cables are available from Amazon and CablestoGO in a VGA, USB and HDMI flavours, with prices starting from £8.

Watch  those Christmas flicks on Acme’s Digital Media Centre

The Christmas holiday season is something we all love and loathe. On the one hand, the traditional movies and festive songs seem so familiar and welcoming and then on the other after a couple of days you’ve had quite enough of that thank you very much.

Acme-Digital-Media-Player

Here’s a nifty gadget for making those long festive hours in front of the telly a little more bearable. If it all gets too much and you really can’t stand the thought of watching another Christmas special, why not watch your own movie selection thanks to a multi media wi-fi player that can broadcast live internet, movies, photos and music to your TV via HDMI.

The Digital Media Centre from Acme in conjunction with north London distributors Interactive Ideas, will support just about every video format playback in 1080p including AVI, MPG, DAT, VOB, DIV, MOV, MKV, MPEG, TS, MTS, M2TS, RM, RMVB, ISO, IFO, WMV, and ASF loaded through an external hard drive via two USB 2.0 and one USB 3.0 sockets or an SD memory card. The supported audio formats are equally expansive with MP3, WMA, RA, RM and OGG. Whilst the built in wifi and LAN can connect to the Internet from your home router so you can watch You Tube or catch up with the latest news and blogs or just listen to internet radio stations.

Ok so there may be another remote control you’ll have to put up with, but at least it’s a small price to pay to save you from endless Christmas television hell. The best part? The Acme Digital Media Centre is small enough that it might just be a good size stocking filler too.

http://www.interactiveideas.com £207.99

TruLink 4-Port HDMI Selector Switch: Helping your HDMI devices learn how to share

We’ve been playing with TruLink products for sometime now and they have a solid history of producing reliable little widgets that help your gadgets play nicely with each other. They remind me of and old Demetri Martin joke about they way to fortune isn’t necessarily being an amazing inventor but being a guy who makes screws and being around an amazing inventor. That way every time some says “I think I’m going to build a bridge” you can stand right beside them and say “You’ll probably need some screws.”

TruLink-4-Port-HDMI-Selector-Switch

The problem with HDMI is that it is relatively new. As a result, many flat-panel TVs only have a few HDMI inputs (which at the time probably seemed excessive), but gaming consoles, receivers and DVRs all output in HDMI. So noting the proliferation of HDMI equipped boxes all vying for space in your TV or AV receiver (even phones pack HDMI ports nowadays) Trulink have introduced the TruLink 4-Port HDMI Selector Switch by CablesToGo.

Like most TruLink products we’ve looked at, the 4-Port HDMI Selector Switch has a wonderful “does what it says on the tin” quality to it and provide additional high definition digital inputs for your DVD players, Blu-ray players, HD-DVD players, gaming consoles, Sky box and cameras. The device is also compatible with most HDMI 3D devices allowing you to switch between 3D devices on your 3D display. And nice sleek black box with big shiny select/power button on the front, the 4-Port HDMI Selector Switch fits in nicely with most home theatre systems. Three of the ports are, as you would expect, housed around the back of the device, with port 4 located at the front – which is handy when you think about various devices that you might want to plug into the box – cameras, camcorders, mobile phones or tablets. There’s also a super simple remote control that lets you easily power on and toggle between inputs.

The CablesToGo TRULink 4-Port HDMI Selector Switch is available immediately through retailers including Amazon from £86.50,

Toshiba AT100: Android tablets hit maturity

This Autumn sees a wealth of mature Android tablets hitting stores – pumped up with better specs and the new 3.1 and 3.2 Honeycomb operating systems. One of these mature devices is the Toshiba AT100 (formally known as the Thrive). How does it shape up? Read on.

Toshiba-AT100

The Toshiba AT100 launched on September 1st, bringing with it Android 3.1 – Google’s first tablet-optimised OS. Most new tablets will be sporting this bad boy, so we’ll move on to other features.

The 250 Tegra processor is the standard heart for most tablets, so we’ll not dwell on it too much. It basically means that all current Android apps should run a-ok, although we’d be wary of playing Full HD videos on it.

There’s a generous amount of DDR2 RAM (1GB) so multitasking should be a breeze, although the built-in 16GB of storage is pretty minimal. Luckily, it takes full-sized SD cards up to 128GB, so you could have a pretty big storage system on your hands.

It’s not just a storage beast, though – it’s pretty beefy all over. It weighs 725g and 15.7mm thick – thicker even than a MacBook Air, and much larger than other tablets.

You’ll also find a full-sized USB and HDMI port, which add to the overall size of the device but also give it increased functionality over its rivals.

The added bulk doesn’t add much battery life, though – you’ll find an Android-standard seven hours.

A lot of that battery must go towards powering the 1280×800, 10.1″ screen, with brightness and colour boasted courtesy of Toshiba’s Resolution+ technology. It’s nice that the resolution is the same as a MacBook, but the picture quality won’t match up with the iPad’s screen.

All-in, it’s one of the biggest tablets on the market – and therefore probably suited to hardcore users. It’ll plug-in to pretty much everything that you’ve already got in your office, and you’ll certainly notice if you’ve accidentally left it behind.

It’s affordable, too, at around £380-£400.

TruLink VGA to HDMI convertor

I don’t think I’ve come across another company that loves making special little boxes that output HDMI signals quite as much as TruLink. From the obvious like Wireless HDMI boxes, to much more specialist devices such as the HDMI splitter, they do an impressive job of getting high-definition pictures onto your flatscreen. They’ve been back to the lab and come up with another bespoke HDMI box – this time to bring more of your aging boxes into the HDMI age.

VGA-to-HDMI-convertor

Like most TruLink boxes, the converter is a plug and play device and does not require any software to run. Getting the device up and running is pretty idiot proof as you have to just plug in the required cables, which are so divergent I *dare* you to put the VGA cable in the wrong slot.

The box upconverts SD signals into glorious HD (within limits obviously), so if you have an older PC you’d been planning on converting into a dedicated media box running a sabnzb+sickbeard+plex set up (and really you should, it’s *amazing*) then the box should add a touch of HD snazz to your rig. Or if you have an older console with and the right cable set up to output to VGA (easy to find via a quick rummage on gumtree or your local second hand electronic knick-knack store) then you can pop it into the box, fire it up and experience glorious HD.

As it’s a simple hook up with no fiddling (bar inserting the cables obviously) you should be good to go in less than a minute. Simple as. If you have boxes with non HDMI outputs that you’d like to view in HD then get this box.

The CablesToGo TRULink VGA to HDMI converter is available immediately through retailers including Amazon from £69.85.

Trulink 2 Port HDMI Splitter review

Think you’re special because you have sexy new flat-screen TV? Well some people have two. And even then their lives aren’t as rosy as you’d imagine.  Their kids are glued to the PS3 in the lounge of what I can only presume is a mansion but they want to watch Can Fat Teens Hunt repeats in another room. Alas there is only a single feed from the Sky HD box.

HDMI-splitter

Is this your life? Ignore my obvious jealousy and fret no more as, to address the common challenge of successfully splitting a single HDMI output to two HD screens, CablesToGo has launched the Trulink 2 Port HDMI Splitter, a robust solution that boosts the HDMI signal to allow cascading up to 45 metres away. The Trulink 2 Port HDMI Splitter is ideal for situations at home where you want to provide a second HDMI feed from a high definition source, such as a Sky HD box, or Blu-ray DVD player.

The unit is remarkable well constructed and looks surprisingly sleek, especially considering that its raison d’être is simply to bifurcate video and audio feeds. This simplicity of purpose is replicated in it’s design – there are no buttons and the unit is little more than HDMI ports at the back and a few LEDs at the front – just so you know that it is working. The splitter won’t compromise on picture quality, supporting video resolutions from 480i to 1080p. The compact little unit also supports HDMI standard speed featured including 3D, allowing you to split a signal from a 3D device to multiple 3D displays and up to as many as eight screens. So if you’ve wanted to have Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs on 8 separate screens now is your chance (it’s an excellent movie so I would understand if you did).

More realistically it is also ideally suited for demonstration, education, training, advertising and presentation purposes.

Justin Hulls, UK Sales Director for CablesToGo, commented: “This product addresses the challenge of splitting an HDMI signal to supply two separate locations will reach locations up to 45 metres away. It also offers full 1080p output across both HDMI ports and therefore appeals to anyone wanting to achieve high resolution HD output to a second TV.”

The CablesToGo Trulink 2 Port HDMI Splitter is available immediately through retailers including dabs from £79.99, here.

Trulink HDMI over Cat5e Extender: Extend HDMI signal range whilst maintaining image quality

How do you extend high-definition TV signals over long distances without comprising image quality? That’s easy; simply purchase a Trulink HDMI over Cat5e Extender. Seemingly providing the answer to the challenge of sending HD TV signals where regular HDMI wiring struggles to perform efficiently and produce high-quality images, Telford-based Cables to Go has produced the HDMI over Cat5e Extender.

cat5e

Encased in a stylish, durable and compact outer case, the Cat5e Extender is a cost-effective way to improve the quality of a picture without having to negotiate issues surrounding ‘dodgy’ signals, which are a regular burden of a wireless device.

Providing a robust solution that can extend HDMI signal up to 60 metres, the Trulink Extender would prove to be particularly beneficial to places where video equipment is typically located in one room, such as offices, classrooms, and retail stores, but where the source is hidden and positioned safely and securely.

Of course providing a higher quality of TV images is not the Trulink HDMI over Cat5e Extender’s only enhancing qualities, as the quality of gaming, home theatre, digital signage and video production is also augmented.

Talking about the reliability and convenience of the Trulink HDMI over Cat5e Extender, Justin Hulls, the UK sales director for Cables to Go said:

“This product is ideally suited to anyone who wants to extend their HDMI signal up to a 60m distance and provide a high quality picture for home or office, home theatre and gaming and video production. It overcomes many of the limitations of competitor solutions for a fraction of the price.”

Although you don’t get improved image quality and signal dilemmas eradicated at no cost, as Cables to Go Trulink HDMI over Cat5e Extender costs approximately £124.99.