Also given an airing were a couple of new remotes, one for home AV and one for Windows Vista Media Center.
The Prestige SRU 9600 is a traditional multi function IR remote with a twist. It uses a jog wheel and touch screen combination to create virtual remotes for all your AV devices so rather than being stuck with the same number pad and generic option keys, unique screens are available for each device it controls. I’m not totally convinced by the concept, but it’s certainly an interesting development. The Prestige 9600 is available now for around £70.
The SRM 7500 meanwhile is the big daddy of Media Center remotes. It incorporates a small colour LCD display which, when combined with its ability to not only send but also receive signals, gives you interactive remote control over your media centre. Coupled with its use of Radio Frequency (RF) transmission - which can pass through walls and has a long range - it enables you to sit at the bottom of the garden, or in another room, and see what's next in your playlist or change the album completely without ever getting up. Now that is what I call useful!
Finally, Philips announced a minor update to its super tough range of 2.5in portable hard drives, with capacities now up to 120GB and 160GB. These USB powered external hard drives have been around for a while but it was the first chance I'd had to take a look at them. As well as having strong aluminium and rubber cases, these little beauties can withstand drops of over 1.6 metres (as amply demonstrated to me) and have a very useful cord storing facility. The 120GB and 160GB versions aren't available quite yet but the 80GB version can be found now for around £75.