Apple MacBook MacBook Air MacBook Pro Media Notebooks

DisplayPort MacBooks Showing HDCP Errors While Playing iTunes Content

Apparently some of the content in the iTunes store (from what I can tell, only the HDTV shows) have HDCP which means that if you want to connect one of those brand new MacBook, MacBook Pro, or MacBook Airs to a non-HDCP compliant display that uses DVI or HDMI your not going to be able to watch that content on that display.

I’m not sure if there is a way around it, I would guess that since the HDCP is ignored if connected to a VGA display you could get a DisplayPort to VGA adapter and then a VGA to DVI adapter which could (possibly) make your computer think that it is connecting to a VGA monitor and not a DVI monitor and therefore ignore the HDCP flag, but since I don’t have the hardware to test it I can’t say for sure if that will work.

Regardless of whether or not there is a workaround this is a problem and I don’t know if Apple is ever going to fix it, since the limitation is put on the media because of the content providers Apple will most likely tell consumers to complain to the media companies and not to Apple.

I just wish that media companies would stop treating regular joes as pirates and understand that the ones they really need to stop (you know, the guys who are selling pirated copies) don’t have any problem getting around this restriction and therefore is pointless in the “war against piracy.”


Computers Notebooks PC

Get a $349 MSI Wind U100 on

As more and more netbooks reach market it seems the price/performance is getting more and more appealing to consumers.

I remember when it was tough to find a good 7″ netbook for less than $400 and now on you can pick up a 10″ MSI Win U100 for $349.

The U100 features the (what now seems to be standard in most netbooks) 1.6GHz Intel Atom processor along with 1GB of DDR2 memory, 120GB hard drive, Intel X3100 graphics, 1.3 megapixel webcam, media card reader, and 3 USB ports.

The netbook is a great size as well, 2.8 lbs and measures 0.7″ thick.

(by the way, this netbook comes with XP preinstalled).

Computers Notebooks

Asus Eee PC Drops Below $300 on

Not much to say here, but if you are looking at buying a netbook you can now purchase the Eee PC 900A which packs a 8.9″ display, 1.6GHz Atom processor, 1GB of memory, a 4GB SSD, and Linux pre-installed all for the low price of $299.99.

In slightly related news the Eee PC is now 1 year old. So, I guess we can all celebrate now by purchasing the sub-$300 netbook.

$299.99 Asus Eee PC 900A

Apple Links of Interest MacBook MacBook Air MacBook Pro Notebooks Rumor

Last Minute Notebook Event Rumor Roundup

The MacBook Air will be getting a mention at todays event. It will be shown off and announced at the event but won’t be available until January 2009. – 9 to 5 Mac

That mysterious button/port on the left side of the MacBook Pro case photos is supposed to be a battery release button. – 9 to 5 Mac

According to Gizmodo the new MacBooks will not be seeing any price cuts at all. – Gizmodo

It is also very possible that the $899 product that has been rumored is not a MacBook but instead is an LED based Cinema Display with Displayport and Magsafe power adapters. – Mac Rumors

Unfortunately I’m going to be working during the event so I won’t be able to even find out what happend until I get out at 4:30pm Eastern time. But, I’m expecting new MacBooks and MacBook Pros with a mention of new MacBook Airs. I also see the possability of some Apple TV announcements but I’m not holding my breath for it (this prediction is more of my wishful thinking prediction). Either way I’m sure we’ll have a nice event (that is unless you are expecting something crazy coming out of left field).

Apple Apple TV HDTV MacBook MacBook Pro Notebooks Rumor

Apple Rumors: Blu-ray Drives in Macs, iWork ’09, iLife ’09, and a Networked HDTV

Although Apple’s invitation clearly stated that they will be talking about notebooks there have been several rumors lately that have cropped up and many of them coming from fairly reliable sources.

Kevin Rose said in the latest live Diggnation episode (not currently available for download) that Blu-ray drives would become an option for high end MacBook Pros. Kevin Rose has been incredibly accurate lately with his predictions and has also previously stated that Blu-ray support would be coming in version 10.5.6 of OS X.

There have been many predicting that we might see some early signs of iLife and iWord ’09 but I don’t really see much validity to these rumors and see them merely as wishful thinking.

Jason Calacanis is even saying that he knew first-hand that Apple has been working on a networked television.

“These LCD HDTVs will be fully networked, with the ability to stream all their iTunes content from your Mac or PC. In fact, Calacanis told me they’ll function like a standard TV with an Apple TV box, only without the need for the box.” –Nate Lanxon, CNET.

I’m pretty sure that if this was announced Apple would have to also announce new Cinema Displays because I don’t know if I would be able to deal with the outcry from customers complaining about how Apple is capable of releasing an HDTV but hasn’t been able to rev the displays in years.

This is how these events always go though, more and more rumors and speculation than the event could ever contain and because of that inevitably, people will be terrible disappointed. I on the other hand expect nothing more than new notebooks and to be honest, if that was all Apple was to show off I would be very satisfied. And besides, there is always Macworld.

Update: has posted some higher quality images of the MacBook and MacBook Pro cases. A couple of them are below and you can see the rest of them here.

Notebooks Rants

What Notebook Should I Purchase?

Next June I’m planning on buying a new notebook and since I know this is going to happen I of course have been thinking about what notebook I’d like to buy. There isn’t much of a decision to make here since I already know of 4 contenders, the decision comes in when I try to decide whether I want a netbook or a full notebook.

The first (and obvious) choice for me is the MacBook Air, since I bought the iMac I haven’t really needed a lot of power in my notebook and have mostly been using it to write blog posts or casually surf the web while sitting on my couch so the MacBook Air would be great, I would get a reasonably powered notebook that is super thin, super light, and have a nice keyboard (which would be a great feature considering the typing that I do while writing blog posts). The next option would be the MacBook, which really won’t even be in the running unless Apple decides to change the material they use the make the case for the MacBook. But, with all the rumors pointing towards an aluminum MacBook it is worth the mention. Not quite as light as the MacBook Air, but slightly more powerful, just as good at battery life, display size, and keyboard usability. But, the MacBook isn’t as light and honestly, just isn’t as stylish as the MacBook Air (which could be worth it since I would be spending about $700 less on it).

The next couple of options are both netbooks and the reason I chose these two specifically is because of their features, their size, and the company building them. The first netbook option is the Dell Inspiron Mini 9, a good looking netbook at a great price ($350 and up), currently it has a 1.6GHz Intel Atom CPU, 512MB of memory, 4GB (and up) solid state drive, and a 9″ screen (most of this will change by the time I purchase it). If I was to buy the Mini 9 I would most likely get the lower $350 version and install Windows XP on it myself (I have a few licenses that aren’t being used right now). The low price and the size are the main reasons I would pick this one but that lack of OS X is what’s making me a little weary of going down that path.

The last option is the Acer Aspire One, The reason I would pick this one is it’s 9″ display, stylish design (I’d get blue), and it’s nicely priced ($399). The problems I have with this one are the same as with the Mini 9 though, it doesn’t run OS X and not having a mac as my main laptop would be a little frustrating.

So, this is obviously a very early look at what I would actually be buying, by then I’m sure I will have many more options. Currently I’m leaning towards the MacBook Air because of its weight, its comfortable keyboard, and the fact that it will run OS X. I’m not anti-Windows at all but my blog workflow works best on OS X, the software that I use, and like to use, is only available for OS X. If your curious it is Transmit mostly, I haven’t found a single FTP application for Windows that I like. And since I use the FTP client daily it needs to be the best app possible.

Hopefully I’ll make the right decision and will be happy with the decision. I’m hoping that Apple will make my decision a lot easier and they have plenty of opportunities to do so, October 14th, MacWorld, and WWDC between now and the time I will be making my purchase.

Notebooks Windows XP

XO Laptops Ship to Peru With Windows XP Preloaded

The government of Peru, Microsoft, and the OLPC project announced an agreement that would provide Windows XP, Office, and other educational resources on XO laptops. This will make Peru the first country in the world to receive XO laptops with Windows preloaded.

This is the beginning of a nine month pilot project to bring educational software and low-cost computing to classrooms throughout Peru.

“We are extremely excited to take part in this historic educational pilot that will benefit school children throughout Peru,” said José Antonio Chang Escobedo, Minister of Education in Peru. “Integrating technology into our school curriculum will help to advance our knowledge economy, improve access to information and will generate opportunities for our students, which, through governmental policies, aims to improve the learning process we are offering our children, as well as closing the digital divide which currently exists between schools in rural and urban areas.”

I’m not sure what I think about this, the XO laptop was built with Linux in mind and I think that Linux would be good for the world in general if it was more widely used. But, it doesn’t surprise me that many people wanted Windows XP on those laptops, since Windows is the most used OS and all. Diversity would be nice in the market but since the whole point of the OLPC program is to teach children in developing nations how to use computers it would probably be beneficial for them to learn how to use an OS that they would most likely be using when the eventually got a job using one.

Computers Linux Mobile Notebooks PC

Acer Aspire One Now Priced at $350 ($330 With Linux)

The Acer Aspire One that debuted for about $500 is now being sold on for $350 with Windows XP or $330 if you want it with Linux instead.

The Aspire One has a 8.9″ 1024×600 display, 802.11b/g, 3 USB ports, and an Intel Atom processor. With this price drop I think netbooks are actually hitting a price point that people will actually be willing to pay for these mini notebooks.

I personally believe that the magic price point for these netbooks will be around $300, at that price it wouldn’t be out of the realm of possibilities for them to be purchased for children. But, I guess these companies either can’t get the manufacturing costs down low enough or want to make a little bit more profit, either way they will learn eventually.

Best Buy Product Page

Computers Mobile Notebooks PC

HP Getting Ready To Debut a Cheaper Mini-Note

HP released my favorite netbook the Mini-Note 2133 in April but my one problem with it was its price. For $499 you get a 1GHz VIA C7-M processor, 512MB of memory, a 4GB flash drive, and Linux and although the build quality almost makes up for it, I wouldn’t purchase it because it’s a little too expensive. To put it in perspective the Aspire one costs $379 and has a faster 1.6GHz Intel Atom processor and a 8GB flash drive.

But, the company’s Australian Market Development head Jerel Chong admitted there will be a “lower cost” device similar to the current model but “won’t be as durable” as the existing system. This lower cost offering would be focused more towards retail channels but I’m very disappointed by this, the best thing about the HP Mini-Note was its great build quality and I guess that that was what you were paying for, it would be nice if they could get the cost of the current model down to say $400 but I guess to do that they will have to sacrifice some of the quality of the machine itself.


Computers Mobile Notebooks PC

Eee PC 901 Available for Pre-Order on Amazon for $399

Amazon has just made an “Asus Eee PC 900 16G” available for pre-order on their website. Well, if you know anything about your subnotebooks you will now that this actually isn’t the 900 but is the 901.

I guess Amazon is having trouble keeping their Eee model names straight (I am as well). Amazon also has 901’s available on their website but they are listed as $599.99 instead. I don’t know if I would suggesting getting the one listed as a 900 if you have your heart set on a 901 but the option is available to you.


Computers Notebooks PC

Acer Aspire One Available in Germany and More Details Found

Acer’s Aspire One is now available in three versions, the A110L, A150L, and A150X.

The A110L has an Atom N270 CPU, Intel 946GSE chipset, 512-1024MB of RAM, 8GB NAND flash storage, 8.9″ 1024×600 display, 802.11b/g, and 3 USB ports.

The others are the same except for a 120GB hard drive instead of the flash storage and are offered with Linux or Windows XP.

German retailers already have the A110L in stock now and they are selling it for €329 (about $518).

Computers Mobile Notebooks PC

The Eee PC 903 and 904 Have been “Unveiled”

Asus has been shoving a lot of new Eee branded products lately and here comes another couple. The Eee PC 903 and 904 are very similar to the 901 except the guts are in a 1000’s chassis. That it is a notebook with an 8.9″ display in a case that was built to hold a 10″ display. So, there will be a fairly large bezel around the display (like the original Eee PC).

It isn’t clear what the differences are between these models but presumably it will be different sized solid state drives and/or memory and/or processor speed. There isn’t any word on pricing but if I was to ballpark I would say around $600.

Eee PC 903
Eee PC 904