SteelSeries headsets

We at TechtalkRadio have had the great pleasure of reviewing headphones from SteelSeries, and I do mean “pleasure”…

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The first set I tried was the SteelSeries 3H.

This is an entry-level product for gamers that is a foldable/collapsible, lightweight gaming headset designed for easy transport.

Headphones:
10 – 27.000 Hz frequency response
7.1 virtual surround sound
The “closed” headphones are optimized for specific gaming sounds like: gunfire, weapon reloads, footsteps, and other crucial sounds…

Microphone:
Retractable, non-directional microphone system
50 – 18.000 Hz frequency response
6.5 foot cable

The cord comes out of the right headphone. On the cord there is an “On/Off” switch for the headset, a mute switch, and “volume up” and “volume down” switches.

http://www.steelseries.com/us/products/audio/3h/information

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The SteelSeries 5H v2 USB headset is designed for gamers with onboard soundcards, and/or gamers who regularly find themselves playing at third party computers.

The “open”, full-size, ear cushions fit around ears and are very comfortable. The headphones can be dismantled into three separate parts (so they can fit into a bag or a carrying case).

“…This headset was developed and optimized specifically for in-game sound frequencies found in the most popular shooters – making in-game sounds like footsteps, alerts and gunfire especially clear. You will be able to hear and pinpoint the location of your opponents…you can boost and lower frequencies of your own choosing, allowing optimization…”

Headphones
– Frequency response: 16 – 28.000 Hz
– Cable length: 10 feet
– Connectors: 1/8″

“…Our…soundcard…was designed for gamers who either use systems with (often crappy) on-board soundcards or players who travel a lot.”

“The soundcard features a processor which frees up CPU power…More free CPU power equals more CPU power for your game application…”
– USB soundcard with 7.1 virtual surround
– Equalizer: 12 channels
– Operating systems: Win XP/Vista/Win 2000/Win 98/Win ME/Mac OS

Microphone
– Pull-out microphone system (it is much easier to grab and extend than the 3H…)
– Frequency response: 75 – 16.000 Hz
– Pick up pattern: Uni-directional

There is a seven foot extension cord for both the headphones and the microphone.

The SteelSeries USB Soundcard software provides options for:
7.1 virtual surround sound…
microphone boost…
environments (padded cell, auditorium, cave, arena, hanger, hallway, drugged, dizzy, psychotic, and more)…
an equalizer…
and karaoke functionality (with vocal cancellation).

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The SteelSeries Siberia USB Headset was designed and…

“…developed in cooperation with professional gamers to ensure that the soundscape, specifications and comfort is suitable for long gaming sessions. But the SteelSeries Siberia USB full-size headset is also designed for multi-functionality.

“This headset is bundled with a USB soundcard featuring virtual 7.1 surround, extremely suitable for gaming, music and movies…The 12 channel equalizer allows for tweaking to personal preferences, while the built-in effects processor can provide ambiance and other effects.


“…this product has been designed so gamers can use it with their favorite MP3-player, handheld gaming device or practically any other kind of portable digital device.

“…the headset features a separate microphone (and a separate soundcard)…and comes with an additional extra long cord for use with stationary computers.”

The choice of colors are black and white.

Headphone
– Frequency response: 18 – 28.000 Hz
– Impedance: 40 Ohm
– SPL@1kHz, 1V rms: 99 – 104 dB
– Jack: 1/8″ (a 1/4″ converter is included)
– Cable length: 9 feet (with extension cord)

I measured the cable coming from the headphones to be 3 feet long. (The extension cord is 6 feet long.)

The headphones use a suspension design to sit on your head. Because I have an obscenely large afro…unless I restrain my hair by tying it in a ponytail…I put the headphones on, and then take my hair out of the headphones.

Microphone
– Frequency response: 80 – 15.000 Hz
– Impedance: 2K Ohm
– Pick-up pattern: Uni-directional
– Sensitivity (1V/P@1 kHz): -38 dB

The microphone cord is 9.5 feet long (115 inches), and can be connected alongside of the headphone extension cord with the clips that are on the extension cord. There is an “on/off” switch on the microphone. It has a clip so you can attach it to clothing, or the supplied “screen hanger” (which can be attached to a surface/monitor with Velcro…which is also supplied).

Windows 7 available October 23

Per Pocket-lint:

In September, the Acer Z5600 will be in stores…with Windows 7.

Acer has confirmed that Windows 7 will be available October 23.

And, any Vista-based models purchased 30 days prior to October 23 will be eligible for a free upgrade.

more vinyl comeback news

According to a story in the New York Post, Best Buy is planning to offer vinyl recordings in some of their stores.

On the Best Buy website, they do offer some. Also, I found some of the listed available (music) formats interesting:
DVD (17100)
VINYL (4569)
12-Inch Single (1533)
DVD-Audio (415)
DualDisc (360)
Blu-ray Disc (218)

I only was able to find one title that I consider a release of album audio on Blu-ray, and that is “Neil Young: Archives, Vol. 1: 1963-1972“.

Per Amazon.com: “…This Blu Ray disc edition contains 10 discs…9 of these discs hold a total of 128 tracks (12 hidden), all presented in ultra high resolution 24-bit/192 Khz stereo PCM state-of-the-art master quality sound, and featuring nearly 60 previously unreleased songs, versions, mixes, or rare tracks….20 special feature videos, film clips, and film trailers…55 audio tracks of rare interviews, radio spots, and concert raps…image galleries of archival photos, press, lyric manuscripts, documents, biographies, tour dates, and complete lyrics…Each of the 10 Blu Ray discs feature 1920X1080 high definition picture quality…(a Blu Ray disc of) ‘Journey Through The Past’…a digital download card to access MP3 files of all 128 audio tracks…”

It is scheduled to be released June 2.

The Tech Alternatives to Air Force One buzzing New York

We’ve no doubt heard of the incident that took place over the skys of Mahatten on Monday April 27th with a 747 in Air Force One colors and an F16 Chase plan. We’ve been told by Media Outlets and the Press Office of the Administration that the plane bieng used for a Photo Opportunity with the Statue of Liberty as the 747 flew over the monument. The fly-over brought terror to many as you can see in Various YouTube videos that have been posted which have demonstrated the memories many New Yorkers felt back to the terrible morning of September 11th, 2001.

What seems to us to be missing from the Administrations decision to how this could effect the businesses and residents of New York was the overlooking of technology and how this could have been completely rendered using products such as Adobe After Effects. Not only could the feelings of those on the ground and in evactuated building been spared but certainly the budget of over 350k it took to accomplish this photo-op, could have been reduced.

With a team of pros, this could have been completed and produced at certainly less the cost with dynamic results. Yes, having Air Force One available is great to have but in today’s age of technology, a possibility of creating this could have been done with a helicopter capturing the footage of the New York Skyline and Statue of Liberty and merged together with footage of the 747 or digitally rendered. We have the technology, this would have been a great time to use it.

This would be a great time for a Digital Artist to create the effect and submit it to the Administration to demonstrate the possibilities with today’s Digital Creation programs from Adobe After Effects to the popular Maya and Lightwave programs as well.