In this month’s magazine we’ve cut down on all the chaff and packed it to the gills with good things to read.
First off is our mammoth Digital Photography guide; from cheap compacts, through super-zooms up to digital SLRs. So, no matter what sort of camera you want, we’ve got a top recommendation for you. We also provide two tutorials which show you how just a few minor tweaks can dramatically improve the look of your pictures.
The antivirus market is changing too. Finally, software vendors are realising that the general public does not know the difference between antivirus and antispyware software. The newest generation of programmes finally protects your computer from everything. This is great because you no longer have to waste money on a fully-featured ‘Internet Security Suite’ knowing that you won’t use half of the features – like spam protection or parental controls.
Wikipedia is becoming the de facto fountain of knowledge for the online world. But can we trust it? Stuart Andrews investigates its custodians and uncovers serious infighting which could undermine the entire resource. We also ask top experts to compare it to the old-school encyclopaedias from Microsoft and Britannica to find out which is best.
Finally, be sure to check out our new notebooks. This month Sony and Toshiba redefine (yet again) just how small and powerful notebooks can be. We’ve also had exclusive access to Asus’ stunning new U3 which introduces us to the concept of notebooks with GPS antennae and eSATA ports.
Nick Ross, Editor
Full version Software
Ashampoo Magical Security 2007
Ashampoo StartUp Tuner 2
Quick Notes Plus 5
Civilization 4: Beyond the Sword (Charlemagne Demo)
Civilization 4: Beyond the Sword (Final Frontier Demo)
Combat Mission Shock Force Demo
Transformers: The Game DemoFreeware
Ambient Design ArtRage
DeepBurner Free 1.8
GIMP help files
GTK+ 2 Runtime Environment v2.10.6 (required for installation of the GIMP)
The GIMP 2.2.13Editorial
Real World Benchmarks
Creating a burned CD-R from an ISO image with DeepBurner Windows
Ad-Aware 2007 18.104.22.168
Adobe Reader 8
AVG 7.5.446 Free Edition
EditPad Pro 6.2.2
Google Desktop Search 4
Google Earth 4 Beta
Microsoft Windows Media Player 11
Spybot Search & Destroy 1.4
True Launch Bar 4.1
Zone Labs ZoneAlarm FirewallInternet
AOL Instant Messenger 6.1
Crazy Browser 3.0 Beta2
Diino 4 Trial Account
Google Toolbar 4.0
Mozilla Firefox 22.214.171.124
Mozilla Thunderbird 126.96.36.199
MSN Messenger 7.0 (98/ME)
Portable Firefox 188.8.131.52
Remote Administrator 3.0
Trillian Basic 3.1.6
Windows Live MessengerPatches
ATI Catalyst 7.3 Control Center Package (XP)
AVG Free Edition Updates
Norton AntiVirus definitions update
NVIDIA Forceware drivers for the FX, 6000. 7000. and 8000 series GPUs. Version 162.22 (Vista)
NVIDIA Forceware drivers for the FX, 6000. 7000. and 8000 series GPUs. Version 162.13
NVIDIA Forceware drivers for 7800 and 7900 GO Series Version 84.63 (Laptops)
Spybot Search & Destroy Update
VIA HyperionPro drivers 5.12A
Realtek AC'97 Codec
Realtek AC'97 Codec (Vista)
Realtek High Definition Audio Codecs
Realtek Realtek High Definition Audio Codecs (Vista)
Apple’s ads may be funny, but they’re woefully inaccurate. Here we reveal dozens of reasons why the PC outclasses the Mac.
Media management gets a Macromedia-inspired makeover; with export preview facilities for mobile devices.
The world’s first punch-proof LCD is here, but only time will tell if there’s a market for it.
The most fully-featured notebook we’ve seen, but price will determine just how desirable this stylish notebook really is.
A free package that scores highly, beating almost all its big-name competition. It’s just a shame it’s such a nag
Pull the plug on the party, but keep the music playing.
A superb camera that takes fantastic pictures, and offers excellent portability and versatility
The lack of a separate status LCD is annoying, but the 400D is great value and capable of great quality
Dell’s new Inspirons are more about colour and value than performance and excitement.
Whether you’re buying or selling, there are some great tools that help you make the most of online auctions.
It might look like a DSLR, but it doesn’t handle as well and loses out to others with bigger zooms
It doesn't happen often, but in case it does, we'll step you through Linux disaster recovery.
An excellent mashup of features, phone and battery life in a Windows Mobile 6 package.
A great next-generation camcorder, but it lacks editing support for the recording format
With peerless detection capabilities, this well-conceived package towers over its rivals.
Not the best road handling, but the offroad features could make it very attractive.
A professional product, but it's a poor performer for the price.
Modern and efficient conversion to WMV with ahead-of-the-curve Silverlight capabilities
An ideal first DSLR thanks to onscreen help. It takes great shots and the battery lasts for ages.
A superb DSLR that’s a joy to use, but the high price and poor software damage value
An 18x zoom in a compact, well-built body. General handling and image quality are great too.
Evil has never been so much fun.
Good quality and with a proper li-ion battery, but expensive and bulky compared to the Olympus.
More features than similarly-priced cameras, including weatherproofing. JPEGs are a touch soft, though
Samsung’s new Flash disk can extend battery life and boost performance – at a price
Good value thanks to a decent 18-70mm kit lens and camera-based anti-shake
Surround-sound support and mastering-quality plug-ins mean Sound Forge is better than ever.
Follow the HD bit flow from the cinema to your home. We look at the technology, cost and advantages.
Our feature story covers best formats, backup options, and why you should reburn those photo CDs every two years.