The rantings of a beautiful mind

On life, society, and computer technology.

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Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada

I live in the Fortress of Solitude. I drive the Silver Beast. My obsession is justice. I used to be a Windows software developer. I retired in 2000 when my stock options helped me achieve financial security.

Friday, May 12, 2006


I've recently acquired a whole messload of high technology...

First, I got an external Double Layer DVD burner, the Sony DRX-810UL, to compensate for the fact that my iMac G5 does not have a Double Layer burner, only a single layer burner. Also, my Toshiba laptop does not have a DVD burner. So this Sony external device can be shared among several computers.

However, I've since learned that Double Layer DVD burning is a questionable technology because of compatibility problems (see But the Sony DVD burner is still quite nice. If you need a DVD burner, I can recommend this or its replacement model, the DRX-820U.

Second, I got a brand new television, a 42" HDTV plasma!!! It's the Panasonic TH-42PX60U. This is a lovely unit with a beautiful picture and really deep rich black levels. I'm very pleased with my purchase! It's missing CableCARD but who the hell cares?! I'd rather save the $500 that this feature costs.

I plan to upgrade my Rogers cable TV service to High Definition sometime later this year.

Third, I got an external TV tuner with PVR (Personal Video Recorder) capability, the Hauppauge WinTV PVR USB2. This is part of my project to build a Do-It-Yourself PVR similar to the commercial TiVo PVR.

The Hauppauge comes with the Nero software suite, which is fairly respectable. The TV tuner itself works well and on the whole I can recommend this device. Be aware, however, that it is not entirely bug-free but none of the bugs are a deal-breaker.


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