In gear

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 12 December, 2010, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 12 December, 2010, 12:00am

Look sharp

Philips' Blade ultra-slim LED monitor (right) exudes minimalist sophistication. Its slender design - the chassis is a thin 12.9mm - was inspired by ice-skating blades, so the company says, so saves space on your desk. The high-definition panel delivers superior colour reproduction, consistent brightness across the screen and a contrast ratio (20,000,000:1) that delivers sharp movies and video games. Its SmartTouch key control responds to the lightest touch and its software allows you to fine-tune monitor parameters, including laptop support and headphone audio output. The Blade monitor sells for HK$2,590 (23-inch model) and HK$1,990 (21.5-inch).

In the fast lane

Having trouble setting up your Wi-fi network? Cisco's high-performance, dual-band Linksys E3000 Wireless-N router (above) takes away some of the frustration and complexity - and would be especially beneficial for the growing number of local residents subscribing to so-called fibre-to-the-home broadband services. These high-speed connections, offered by PCCW and Hong Kong Broadband Network, deliver data transfer speeds of up to 100 megabits per second. The router simultaneously connects the 2.4-gigahertz and 5GHz bands. This brings smoother high-definition video streaming and wireless gaming to an Xbox 360 or PlayStation 3. It also has four gigabit ethernet ports for fast file transfer as well as for the hooking up of storage devices. The Linksys E3000 costs HK$1,195.

New and improved

The two most common complaints people have about their laptops or mini notebooks are poor audio quality and laptop heat. Logitech claims its Speaker Lapdesk N550 offers dramatic improvements in both areas. It features integrated speakers that sit on either side of a laptop while the four-layer, heat-shielding design, combined with soft, air-mesh fabric, makes laptop use more comfortable. The angled base raises a laptop screen to a comfortable viewing position, and integrated foldable bumpers on the surface help keep the computer in place. There is no software to install; users simply plug a single cable into the laptop's USB port. The Lapdesk N550 (below) is priced at HK$399.