Cool business tools are not just for fun and games. What makes many of these devices exceptional is their ability to help us work better, faster, and more cost-effectively.
The need to communicate visually has made a high-performance digital camera an essential part of office technology. Canon's new Digital Rebel XTi takes the affordable D-SLR to a new level of performance. This $899 semi-pro camera features 10.1 megapixel resolution, fast 3 frames per second shooting, and a 9-point wide area auto focus system. Good low-light performance and versatility (the Rebel XTi accepts 60 Canon EF-S lenses and other accessories), make this an excellent choice for capturing valuable business images.
To make sure you never miss an important shot, keep a Nikon Coolpix S7c close at hand. This 7.1 megapixel, pocket-sized camera features a Nikkor 3X zoom lens, and a bright 3-inch LCD. In-camera red-eye reduction, blur warning, ISO 1600 high sensitivity mode, and a host of other intelligent functions help you get usable pictures under difficult shooting conditions. This stylish, sub-$350 unit also features built-in Wi-Fi for rapid uploading of pictures, and includes one year of complimentary T-Mobile Hotspot service.
Not too long ago, terabyte-capacity network attached storage (NAS) was a luxury few small businesses could afford. The Maxtor Shared Storage II costs less than $700 for a 1-terabyte model, and provides fast, reliable backup and shared storage for the Macs and PCs on your network. The unit includes an Ethernet port for connection to your network, a USB 2.0 connection for expansion, plus integrated streaming capabilities for sharing music and video.
For more modest shared storage requirements, check out the new LinkStation LS-250GL from Buffalo. This easy-to-use, network-ready drive provides 250 MB of secure, expandable storage for Macs and PCs, for less than $300.
Every small business needs a big screen. A 40-inch or larger LCD can be used to display a PowerPoint presentation or spreadsheet, view multi-window business TV broadcasts, watch a product training DVD, or for gaming and entertainment. The new Samsung LN-S4096D is a 40-inch LCD display with super-high 1920x1080 resolution, and a very crisp 6000:1 contrast ratio. This exceptional screen costs less than $3,000 and includes a cable card-ready HDTV tuner, hidden bottom speakers, and enough inputs, outputs, and control functions for almost any home or office application.
The spectacular Sony Bravia KDL-46XBR3 is perfect for a media room requiring the best in both computer and HDTV display. With an MSRP of $4,600, the 46-inch Bravia is definitely a premium unit, but its beautiful, high-contrast (7000:1), 1920x1080 native picture and advanced signal processing make it ideal for situations where image quality and visual impact are paramount.
The plummeting cost of high-tech prosumer products can help you upgrade your business tools without breaking the bank.
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