ZenBook 13 Ultrabook Gets Discrete Graphics

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Zenbook 13Asus announces an update of the ZenBook 13 Ultrabook-- the UX331, featuring 13.3-inch 1920 x 1080 resolution touchscreen and discrete Nvidia graphics inside a chassis just 14mm thick and weighing 1.12kg.

The graphics card inside the machine is a GeForce MX150 with 2GB GDDR5 RAM, providing plenty of grunt for some graphics and GPU-intensive tasks. Further specifications include an Intel Core i5-8250U CPU, 8GB LPDDR3 RAM, 256GB SSD and a 50Wh lithium-polymer battery the company says allows for up to 14 hours on a single charge (and charging to 60% capacity in 49 minutes).

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James Loudspeaker Offerings at ISE 2018

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ISE 2018 hosts a number of products from décor-friendly audio manufacturer James Loudspeaker, including LR-S 2.1 soundbars, the 42SA-4 in-ceiling/in-wall speaker and new Omni Planter speaker systems.

James Loudspeaker iseThe LR-S 2.1 soundbars produce left- and right-channel audio, as well as bass from a centre-mounted built-in subwoofer. The soundbars are customisable to fit nearly any flat-panel display, and while originally designed for commercial applications they have been adopted for residential applications demanding audio without need for surround sound.

Currently available in the SPL5, SPL6 and SPL8 series soundbars, the LR-S versions offer high output and bass extension below 60Hz from nearly any size form factor. The 2.1 configuration makes the soundbars ideal for matching with the A2.1 three-channel amplifier, which features onboard crossovers and independent controls for easy calibration.

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Control4 CA-1 Makes ISE Debut

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Control4 shows off its latest wireless controller at ISE 2018-- the CA-1, a means for installers to provide customers with a start in home automation through lighting, temperature, control and security control.

Control4 CA-1The CA-1 features ethernet, wifi, ZigBee and serial connectivity, and leverages on the Control4 database of thousands of 3rd party devices. An optional Z-Wave module adds compatibility with Z-Wave-enabled devices such as door, window, water, flood and temperature sensors, as well as electrical outlets and dimmer outlet modules. Power over Ethernet (PoE) allows installation anywhere with a single network cable.

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Cinema Partners Bring Home Theatre to ISE

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Cinema Partners-- the alliance bringing together dARTS Digital Theatre, Ineva Designs and DT Screens-- shows off a home theatre experience featuring best-in-class products at ISE 2018.

Cinema PartnersThe demo room features a Dolby Atmos 9.2.6 setup running on precision-calibrated dARTS speakers and a DT Screens Frontier Fixed Frame projector screen with an AT Ref image surface. Audio comes through a 16-channel StormAudio ISP 3D.16 ELITE preamp/processor, while a Barco Orion projector provides the required images.

The dARTS Theatre system claims to be the most precise cinema speaker system around. It combines speaker drivers tuned to 0.5dB of one another with an intelligent amp providing up to 105dB SPL anywhere in the listening area. A custom version of Audyssey MultEQ software calibrates the speakers, resulting in sound matching a "precision-tuned movie theatre."

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Nikkei: Sharp Considers Buying Toshiba PC Business

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Sharp is looking to return to the PC market, Nikkei reports-- specifically through the purchase of the ailing Toshiba PC unit, as well as help from parent company Foxconn.

SharpThe Japanese newspaper says talks have already begun "at the working level," while analysts suggest the price for the unit totals around ¥10 billion (or $91.9 million). Previously Toshiba considered selling the PC unit to Taiwan's Asus, but the deal failed to materialise.

As mentioned earlier, the Toshiba PC unit is a loss maker. In fiscal 2016 it saw operating losses reaching ¥500m on sales of ¥191.8bn, the result of competition from the Asian mainland, not to mention the generally shrinking PC market. As a result it has already scaled back operations by pulling out of consumer PCs in emerging markets.

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