External fax modem offers fast dial-ups, USB...

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July 12, 1999|By Knight Ridder/Tribune

External fax modem offers fast dial-ups, USB convenience

Not everyone is willing to crack open the computer case to upgrade the modem.

That's why Diamond Multimedia recently introduced the external SupraExpress 56e USB fax modem, which combines the fastest analog dial-up technology with the convenience of a Universal Serial Bus connection.

Diamond's modem is easy to install and draws power straight from the USB port of your computer. There's no worry about hardware conflicts commonly associated with an internal device or having to deal with an extra AC adapter that normally accompanies an external modem.

Outside, the modem is translucent blue. Inside, it utilizes both the 56K ITU standard (V.90) and the older K56 flex technologies to assure reliable Internet access and communication compatibility with Internet service providers. By the way, although "56K" refers to the modem's capability to download 56,000 bits of data per second under ideal circumstances, government regulations, poor phone lines and other conditions limit the modem's top speed to somewhat less than that.

The SupraExpress 56e USB fax modem is Macintosh- and PC-compatible. It lists for $100 and ships with Internet and fax software.

Information: 800-468-5846 or www.diamondmm.com

Hot new speakers deliver incredible surround sound

Cambridge Soundworks' quest to provide better surround sound for personal computers continues with the FourPointSurround FPS2000 Digital, a system that delivers truly incredible audio.

FPS2000 consists of a powered subwoofer, four satellite speakers for front and rear channels and a master volume control.

They can be hooked up to any four-channel PC sound card but are specially designed to take advantage of the proprietary digital DIN connection of the Sound Blaster Live! sound card from Creative Labs, Cambridge Soundworks' parent company.

Connecting the speaker wires to the speakers and subwoofer and finding locations for the surround speakers can be time-consuming, but you'll only have to do it once.

When everything is situated, this speaker system produces some of the best-sounding audio ever from a PC with no noticeable hissing noise or other distortion, even at high volume.

Computer users who play a lot of movies, music or games should be thrilled with the home theater quality sound of the $200 FourPointSurround FPS2000 Digital.

Information: 800-367-4434 or www.hifi.com

-- Jim Buu

Pub Date: 07/12/99

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