News Archive for: 3/11/2005 Friday's News (later posted items first)
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Commandos Battle Pack demo
Feral's news page today notes there's a Commandos Battle Pack demo available. "The demo is taken from Commandos 3 and includes a tutorial and one full mission".
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ATI Request for beta testers for X800 Wake from Sleep Video Corruption Fix
" Hey Mike.
In follow-up to the wake from sleep problem... I need some people to test a fix for this before we make any releases. As many of your forum readers know, we've had a beta group going for almost a year now. I'm looking for a few people who have this corruption problem to join the group.

Those interested should contact me at with a brief mention of their system configuration.
I'm primarily interested in people who are willing to continue participation in the beta program after this specific issue has been resolved. I will forward a questionnaire, NDA and instructions to those I select to join.
(ATI) "

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Afire 27dBm Antenna/Amplifier for Airport Extreme or G5
" I was doing some research after seeing the quickertek announcement on your page. (their recent re-issue of a PR in yesterday's Other Net News-Mike) I found this.

    "Afire - The simplest solution to boost the output of the Apple Airport Extreme Base Station and the G5 tower!

    The newest addition to RadioLabs product line is a dramatic boost for Apple products, especially the Airport Extreme Base Station and G5 Mac! A smokin' 1/2 watt amplifier (or +27dBm), combined with a 5.5 dB flexible antenna for instant long range wireless connections.
    Simple plug and play installation - Two easy connections are all that is required and you can boost the range of your Apple Airport Extreme or G5 Mac. ... Most 1/2 watt wireless amplifiers cost over $300. Due to a very unique design, small amplifier module and cutting edge wireless amplifier design, RadioLabs is able to sell this for $149.95..."

Less expensive than quickertek 27dBm antenna. In stock. Works with back of G5 also.
Mike F. "

If anyone tries one of these let me know who well it works.

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Miglia considering a Firewire version of Evolution TV
" Hi mike,
With recent interest in TV and macs, you might like to know that Miglia are considering a Firewire version of their Evolution TV according to an email I received from the UK sales office (I can forward it if required).

Given the amount of mac users that lack USB 2.0 functionality, yet have firewire and the processing power to support the requirements, it would be a cheaper alternative than the EyeTV 200 from elgato.
Regards and congratulations on a great (and useful) site
mark "

I'd much prefer a Firewire version also.

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Call for EyeTV Helper App Beta Testers
"Hi Mike,
If you remember, I'm the guy who used his EyeTV 200 to tape 26 hours straight over Christmas. (one of the reports on our EyeTV feedback page)

I've been monitoring your EyeTV feedback, and have some good news for EyeTV users: over the last few months I have been developing a helper application for EyeTV that will add 20-30 new features to the EyeTV software, including many of the feature requests people have been begging for:

  • Infrared cable box control (using Zephir or IRTrans)
  • Get EyeTV to see multiple archive locations on different drives
  • Data export functions for labeling / adding to database, etc.

I have been getting great support from Elgato, StudioZee, and IRTrans, and am excited about how the app is turning out. I will be ready for beta testers in early April.

Could you please put out a call for feature requests and beta test volunteers?

For reference, here is a full list of features (a few of these may not make the first release, and some others may be added):

  • Automated infrared cable box/satellite control using the ZephIR or IRTrans.
  • Get EyeTV app to see all your archive locations at once, even if they're on different drives--- merge all scheduled programs onto the current archive, and access any recording from any drive for all EyeTV functions.
  • Manage moving media and programs between archives-- access all your archives from a central location.
  • Select multiple programs to export at once (compared to the current on-at-a-time method).
  • Export of audio-only files (eg. AIFF export, export to iTunes).
  • Export information from all or selected programs/recordings as a tab-delimited text file, for the purpose of label creating, or importing into a database.
  • Set compression rates individually per program.
  • Creating a new program / viewing and changing program data can be done with a drawer that is continuously visible (rather than EyeTV's method of opening a window that sits on top of your main window).
  • View more information in List view than current EyeTV app, with sortable & re-arrangeable columns.
  • Copy and paste data from the list view.
  • Customizable toolbar.
  • Different window views for recordings & programs, each tailored for the kind of info you want to keep track of for each one -- and view handles let you allot more screen space to one or the other depending on what you're doing.
  • Fix dates of repeating programs so they actually show up in order they will be taped (current EyeTV app sorts them based on when the first occurrence was recorded, rather than what is coming up next).
  • View data rates & sizes of recordings in List view.
  • Select a number of recordings and the app will tell you the sum of the sizes in GB (for example, for seeing what will fit on a DVD).
  • Playlists/categories for grouping types of programs, favorites, etc.
  • More data functions, like viewing within date range, etc.
  • Advanced searching capabilities, with the ability to save searches.
  • Bigger movie thumbnail than EyeTV, with Quicktime play controls and ability to set poster frame (only available for non-Mpeg2, because of a limitation in Quicktime).
  • Indicate channel for S-Video/composite recordings (For digital cable box or satellite, to remember what channel to set the cable box to).
  • Export program data to iCal.
  • Channel change reminders in iCal (for cable box / satellite owners who donĚt have infrared control)
  • Set chapter points in DVD Studio Pro exports (current app only exports chapter markers to Toast for some reason).
  • Export to Mpeg2Works.
  • Reveal recording file in Finder (jump to the actual Mpeg file).
  • Open recording with Quicktime Player (for non-Mpeg2) or VLC.
  • Create aliases to Mpeg files with descriptive file names.
  • Create backup of and/or rebuild channel description file (currently you have to manually re-enter station names if your preferences are lost for any reason).
  • Export data to Filemaker
  • Export to separate movie library program I'm building, which prints DVD labels, has IMDB lookup, many other functions.

Thanks, Graham Jones

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iPod Shuffle Clone (the Luxpro Super Shuffle)
(from a reader mail yesterday)

" Hello Mike,
here in Hannover it's "CeBIT-time". There are a lot of "new" products, like the "Super Shuffle".

I didn't make these pictures, but I thing they are very interesting.
Have a look at this pictures (from
"We had the same idea", said Kevin Liu of Luxpro ... ;-)
Greetings from Hannover (Germany)
Heiko "

Another reader sent a link to the company page at

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Mac Mini Analog Video/Monitors Reports Updated
I've updated the page with Mac Mini analog video reports with the latest reader mails on the subject. (A 21" Viewsonic owner noting dimmer video compared to his G4 tower, another owner noting no difference seen with a Philips 107 T51 monitor used with a Mini and PB G4.) Some that saw the problem in the past have said that a monitor calibration helped. If you see dim or low-contrast video with a Mac Mini and VGA/Analog display, include the monitor brand/model in reports.
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Mac Radeon X800 XT Reports page updated
I've updated the Mac ATI Radeon X800 XT feedback page with two more reports on the wake from sleep video corruption problem (primarily seen with an AL Cinema Display although a Dell LCD user wrote today he's also had the problem). ATI is investigating the problem so hopefully a fix will be forthcoming. (I use an X800 w/Sony CRT and don't see the problem.)
Update - see the later news item above from Bruno of ATI on a request for testers of a possible fix for this.
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Other Net News
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CDRW/CD/DVD/Hard Drive/Cardreader Compatibility Database Update Listing
The Drive Compatibility Database had 6 new reports added this morning. (Entries today are added the next newsday morning.) The database includes reports on CDRWs, Combo DVD-CDRW, DVD-ROM, DVD Burners, Hard Drives and Removables (tape drive, ORB, ZIP, MO drives, CF/Smartmedia readers, etc.) in all interface types (IDE, IDE RAID cards, SATA, Firewire, SCSI, USB, adapters). Current total - 14,390 reports. (searching by drive type/brand, mac model etc. listed below will show the full reports, most recent first - does not include updates to previous reports)

    DVD+R/RW + DVD-R/RW Drives:
  • Firewire (cased) Sony DRX-530UL used w/9500 (OS X 10.3)
    (Using Patchburn 3 for iApps burn support.)
  • IDE Matshita UJ-825-B in Powerbook G4 (OS X 10.3)
    (drive not recognized - perhaps set to slave.)
  • IDE Matshita UJ-825-B in Powerbook G4 (OS X 10.3)
    (Using Patchburn 3 for iApps burn support.)
  • IDE Matshita UJ-825-B in Powerbook G4 (OS X 10.3)
    (Using Patchburn 3 for iApps burn support.)
  • IDE NEC ND-3520A in Dual G4 (OS X)
    (problems using Patchburn 1.1 for 10.2.x iApps burn support. )
  • IDE Pioneer DVR-109 in G4/AGP (OS X 10.3)
    (Using Patchburn 3 for iApps burn support. Illustrated CD drive install guide here covers G4 towers up to the Digital Audio Model, Beige G3 MT and B&W G3 Macs)

You can find full owner reports (latest shown first) by searching the database by drive/brand/interface/mac models (the latest reports are shown first in searches). For guides to installing CD/CDRW/DVD drives or Hard drives in many mac models, see the IDE Articles page. The Firewire articles page also has guides on case kits, installing drives, etc.
If you've added a IDE, SCSI, Firewire or USB hard drive, CDRW, tape drive, etc. make sure you add a report to the database. (If you post an updated entry - make sure you use the same name, etc. as you did before so I can find your past entry. Thanks.)
(Incomplete entries are deleted. Do not post questions in the database, it's for drive reports not questions on what drive to buy - for that try searching the database for reports from owners of your mac model on the drive type/brand/interface, etc. you're interested in.)

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Rate Your CPU Upgrade Reports Database Updated
The Rate Your CPU Upgrade database has been updated with 1 new report this morning (entries later today are added the next newsday morning). Total to date: 9,827. Here's a summary of the report added (search by brand/mac model for full reports - latest reports always shown first):

  • Other World Computing G4 1GHz (at 1.25GHz) in (Sawtooth) G4/AGP (rated 9)

    (Full reviews of G4 and G3 upgrades compared to stock CPUs, including real world apps/game tests, install info, etc. are linked at the CPU upgrades page. OC/CPU module articles are on the Systems page.)

(Warning - Overclocking may not be reliable and could lead to hardware failure or corrupted data.) You can find the full reports by searching the database selecting the indicated Mac model and upgrade card brand/type. If you've upgraded the CPU on your Mac, please post an entry in the database. Search the database for entries from most every upgradable Mac model *before* you buy. (Searchable by mac model/upgrade brand).

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Recent Reviews and Articles:
Listing/links to recent articles and reviews you may have missed.
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