Friday, August 10, 2012

Epson Workforce 845 Printer

The Epson Workforce 845
An all-in-one that lives up to its name

I have to say so far this printer is amazing. First off, it's wireless N, and it connects seamlessly to my network. It can also be connected via ethernet, as well as a USB connection to a PC for scanning purposes. The 7.8" touch panel with 3.5" LCD folds away when not in use. It has its own Epson email address, allowing me to email images or documents from anywhere and have them automatically print. It also is compatible with Epson's iPrint app for Android and iOS, which allows for printing documents, photos, web pages or anything from smart phones and tablets while on the wifi network.

Epson iPrint

It features auto-duplex, a huge time and paper saver. There are ports for memory cards and USB, allowing for direct print. Included in the software is a comprehensive OCR suite. The printer also comes with high-capacity ink cartridges ready to be installed. The auto document feeder closes up when not in use, keeping most of the dust out of the feeder mechanisms.

Image and color quality are fantastic, a huge improvement over the HP this printer replaced. And the Epson Workforce 845 is FAST.

And the best part? The price. I picked up mine for $99.99 at my local Microcenter. It's easily worth twice that. You can't beat this deal with a stick.

  • World's fastest all-in-one
  • 15 ISO ppm black, 9.3 ISO ppm color
  • 2-sided ISO ppm: 7.4 blk/5.4clr
  • 500-sheet paper capacity
  • Low ink cost with individual color cartridges
  • Wireless b,g,n
  • Energy Star

Monday, January 30, 2012

Replacement power adapter for 23" Apple Cinema Display

So I got ahold of a 23" Apple Cinema Display LCD monitor. One Problem: No power adapter! So after some extensive internet searches for new or used adapters (models A1097 90w or A1098 150w) I came to the conclusion that these are either impossible to get, or exorbitantly overpriced in the area of $150+. Also, it turns out these adapters are highly prone to failure. (Don't bother ordering from ebay sources in Asia. I tried several and despite saying they had hundreds in stock, none of them actually did.)

I figured there had to be a better and cheaper alternative.

The monitor itself requires 24 volts, 3.7 amps, and 90 watts. (The 30" Cinema Display requires 150 watts and may require more amperage.) Based on that requirement I ordered a generic 24 volt 6 amp 145 watt regulated switching power supply off of ebay. This one cost me $27.59 from seller yallstore:

The monitor has one cable coming from the back that includes a DVI connector, USB and Firewire connectors for the ports on the back, and the proprietary power connector that goes to the A1097 power adapter. The first thing to do is to cut off the stupid apple power connector:

Remove about an inch and a half of the rubber sheathing and the grounding mesh. Inside there are 3 wires: black, red, and a tiny grey wire. The grey wire is a 5v wire presumably to give power to the USB and Firewire ports on the back of the monitor. We are not going to worry about this one; just move it out the way or cut it off.
Strip the black and red wires back about a centimeter. Connect the black wire to the V- and the red wire to the V+ on the back of the power supply.

Next you'll need a regular power cable like any PC would use. Cut off the female end. Strip back a centimeter on each of the 3 wires inside. Attach the black wire to the Hot or Line (L), the white wire to Neutral (N), and the green wire to the Ground connection.

Lastly, BEFORE YOU PLUG IT IN, be sure the power supply is switched to 110v AC. Things would get smoky otherwise!

So, now you are ready. Attach the DVI plug to the PC, power on the monitor, and here you go:

A little splicing and for under $30 your monitor is working. The generic adapter will run cooler and be less prone to failure due to the metal mesh design, so you should get much longer life than you would from the plastic-encased apple product.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

So Much For WPA

WPA encryption cracked in one minute

Thu Aug 27, 2009 1:43PM EDT

The second generation of Wi-Fi security systems has now been broken as badly as its notoriously insecure predecessor: Japanese researchers say they can crack WPA (Wi-Fi Protected Access), the successor to the old-school WEP, inside of a minute's time spent eavesdropping on a wireless network.

Details on the mechanics of the attack are set to be announced next month at a computer conference, but it's tentatively described as taking to "a new level" the previous method by which WPA had been roughly compromised, adapting previously theoretical holes in the WPA system and turning them into practical attack techniques.

The previous method of attacking WPA devices took up to 15 minutes to be successful, and didn't always work. The new method is said to work on far more devices and, obviously, much more quickly. However, as with the old attack, the new one only works on WPA devices that use the TKIP (Temporal Key Integrity Protocol) algorithm, which is a setting in your router and device setup.

WPA devices that use the newer AES (Advanced Encryption Standard) algorithm, plus devices that use WPA2 -- the third generation of wireless security standards -- are still safe for now.

However, this does mean that it won't be long before this attack technique trickles out into software that malicious hackers can use to invade WPA networks. With access to your wireless network, a hacker can potentially eavesdrop on any traffic sent, access shared folders on computers attached to the network, and of course send and receive data (like illegal file sharing or even child pornography) which could then be blamed on you.

To protect yourself, upgrade the security settings on your devices to WPA2 if they all support the standard. Alternately, you can upgrade any WPA device from TKIP security to AES. Check in your router administration console and on your computer for and where how to do this.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Deal of the Day

Want a Blu-ray player but don't feel like dropping $200 or more for it? Here's an internal SATA blu-ray BD-ROM drive that will play blu-ray movies on your PC over your HD-capable monitor.
And it's only $69.99!

This Lite-On DH-4O1S is a read-only device for all popular media formats, including Blu-ray discs. Besides Blu-ray discs, the drive can read DVD+/-R(W) and CD-R(W) media. The retail pack includes an extra silver bezel and a SATA cable to connect the drive to the motherboard of the PC. It also includes a Cyberlink Blu-ray software package for playback Blu-ray media in high definition. The DH-4O1S has a Serial ATA interface and reads BD-R/RE/ROM/SL/DL media at a maximum of 4X. Single Layer DVD -/+ can be read at 12X, while Double Layer DVD-/+R and Single Layer DVD-/+RW can be read at 8 X CD-R(W) can be read at a maximum speed of 32X.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Going Green: Download in Sleep Mode

Somniloquy Lets Your Computer Download Files In Its Sleep

With the "green" movement now invading the technosphere, it was only a matter of time before someone came up with this - a way to let your computer keep downloading files or utilizing VoIP while in sleep mode to conserve electricity.
From Gizmodo:

Usually, when us modern, sensitive, environmentally-conscious types leave the computer on all night, it's because we're downloading something sizable. But what if our computers could handle that task while in sleep mode, thus saving energy?

Computer scientists at UC San Diego along with Microsoft Research have developed this USB device they dub the Somniloquy, which appropriately enough means "talking in one's sleep." The dongle lets you keep your computer in sleep mode, which saves a ton of energy, while remaining seemingly active on the network. So your computer will be in sleep mode, but you'll still be able to download files or receive IM or VoIP messages, and if an action that requires your computer's full attention does occur, Somniloquy will gently rouse it from its slumber.

The device is actually a very low-power computer, complete with OS and flash memory, and essentially takes over as the computer's presence on the network while the actual computer is asleep. It consumes somewhere between 11 and 24 times less power than a full computer, which makes for some impressive energy savings. The creators are hoping the tech will be incorporated into future network cards so computers have this functionality out of the box. You know what? We're hoping that, too.

Deal of the Day

Acer 23" Widescreen LCD Monitor with 50,000:1 contrast ratio, full HD, only $179.99 with free shipping!

Acer P235Hbmid Black 23" 5ms HDMI Widescreen LCD Monitor

This is a steal - full HD, with HDCP (that means copy-protected HD content, like Blu-Ray, will display on it,) 3 inputs (D-sub analog, DVI-D, and HDMI) 5ms response, 300 cd/m2 brightness, 1920x1080 native resolution, and energy-star compliant. The 50,000:1 contrast ration means deep blacks and fantastic color.

Friday, July 31, 2009

Deal of the WEEK!

SimpleTech SimpleDrive 1TB USB 2.0 External Hard Drive Retail - FV-U35/1TBC

Again this week, cannot be beat. A 1 Terabyte external drive (that's 1000 Gigabytes!) for $86.00 is unbelievable! Considering the world's first TB hard drive only came out in 2007, it is incredible to find one now for under $90.
To put into perspective just how much data this can hold,
The U.S. Library of Congress Web Capture team has claimed that "As of May 2009, the Library has collected almost 100 terabytes of data". So this drive can hold the equivalent of over 1% of the fricken' Library of Congress. #: 5832713

" SimpleTech SimpleDrive "

Simply better external storage and backup.
Plug n' play, Turbo-powered USB 2.0
keeps your data moving up to 25% faster.

With two levels of backup, we've made it easy to

steer clear of life's little disasters and protect your
irreplaceable pics, flicks and tunes from spilled
drinks, curious toddlers, fire, or theft.

Price: $ 86.00

SimpleDrive USB2.0 External HD