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Photos: Top 10 reviews of the week

Here are ZDNet's 10 favorite items from the past week, including the new Microsoft Zune, 2008 Porsche Cayenne GTS, and the Motorola Q Global.
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By ZDNet UK on
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1 of 10 ZDNet UK/ZDNet

2008 Porsche Cayenne GTS

Here's our weekly roundup of the new products ZDNet liked best.

2008 Porsche Cayenne GTS

Editors' rating: 4.5

The good: The 2008 Porsche Cayenne GTS is the finest-handling SUV we've ever tested, yet still retains off-road capability. Its Bose audio system produces clean and refined sound.

The bad: The Porsche Communication Management option, a unit combining navigation, stereo, and phone, represents older cabin tech. Its phone system is designed for Europe and doesn't work in the U.S.

The bottom line: It may cost a lot, but the 2008 Porsche Cayenne GTS is a high performance on- and off-road vehicle. Current cabin tech isn't great, but a new version of the Porsche Communication Management system is coming out soon.

Read ZDNet's full review

Price range: base price is $70,900; review model cost $90,100

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Alienware Area-51 m17x

Alienware Area-51 m17x

Editors' rating: 4

The good: Highest-end components; imposing design; fantastic performance.

The bad: Starting configurations are overpriced; touch controls are a bit wonky.

The bottom line: If you're looking to drop some major change on a show-off gaming laptop, it's hard to do better than the Alienware Area-51 m17x, a mean-looking, high-performance black slab.

Read ZDNet's full review

Price: $1,799.00

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Microsoft Zune 120GB

Microsoft Zune 120GB (third generation, glossy black)

Editors' rating: 4

The good: The 120GB Microsoft Zune MP3 player has expanded the usefulness of its Wi-Fi and social music-discovery features, added support for games and audiobooks, and maintained enviable features, such as a 3.2-inch glass LCD, friendly interface, exceptional navigation control, audio- and video-podcast support, superlative FM radio, wireless syncing, good audio quality, and a built-in composite-video output.

The bad: Battery life isn't great; high-quality earbuds are no longer included; the glossy plastic front is more prone to scratches and smudges; and using many of the new features without a Zune Pass music subscription can be disappointing.

The bottom line: The Zune 120, with a unique focus on music discovery, is a fierce competitor to the iPod Classic. The Zune's substantial storage capacity combined with its Zune Pass music subscription makes it an ideal solution for restless music fans with large appetites.

Read ZDNet's full review

Price range: $249.00 - $249.99

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2008 Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution MR

2008 Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution MR

Editors' rating: 4

The good: The 2008 Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution MR puts power to the road with an excellent dual clutch transmission, all-wheel-drive system, and turbo-charged four cylinder engine. It uses a hard drive-based navigation system with extra room for music storage.

The bad: Turbo-lag and poor fuel economy afflict the performance, and the price tag runs over 40 grand.

The bottom line: Although a little expensive for a boy racer, the 2008 Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution MR combines impressive performance and cabin tech, making a car that is extremely fun to drive.

Read ZDNet's full review

Price range: base price is $38,965; review model cost $41,765

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Sony NWZ-S738F Walkman

Sony NWZ-S738F Walkman (8GB, black)

Editors' rating: 4

The good: The Sony S-Series Walkman is nicely designed and has a high-quality feel; it offers a load of cool extras such as integrated noise-canceling, an FM tuner, podcast support, and a smart playlist creator. The display is bright and crisp, and the interface is customizable and easy to navigate. The player sounds great right out of the box and features several sound-enhancement options. It has Rhapsody DNA and works flawlessly with Amazon Video On Demand.

The bad: The S-Series Walkman maxes out at 8GB and doesn't include memory expansion. The packaged earbuds, which are necessary for the noise-cancellation feature, may not be comfortable for all users. There's no voice recording option.

The bottom line: Thanks to excellent sound quality, integrated noise-canceling functionality, and several smart music sorting options, the Sony S-Series Walkman is a superb choice for music aficionados.

Read ZDNet's full review

Price: $179.99; $149.99 for the 4GB model

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Logitech Z-5

Logitech Z-5

Editors' rating: 3.5

The good: Logitech's Z-5 PC speakers offer decent sound for a reasonable price; omnidirectional acoustics; USB connectivity obviates need for bulky power adapter; compatible with Mac and Windows PCs; included remote allows you to control playback of music from across the room; auxiliary input for connecting to non-PC audio sources.

The bad: Little light on the bass; no volume control on speakers themselves.

The bottom line: While we weren't blown away by their sound, the Logitech Z-5s' combination of a simple, clean design, USB connectivity, and some basic remote operation make them a decent value in the sub-$100 PC speaker space.

Read ZDNet's full review

Price range: list price is $100, but you can find them online for closer to $80

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Microsoft Zune

Microsoft Zune (third generation, 8GB, black)

Editors' rating: 3.5

The good: The Microsoft Zune MP3 player has expanded the usefulness of its Wi-Fi and social music-discovery features, added support for games and audiobooks, and maintained enviable features, such as a glass-covered LCD, friendly interface, exceptional navigation control, audio- and video-podcast support, superlative FM radio, wireless syncing, and good audio quality.

The bad: Battery life isn't great; the glossy plastic front is more prone to scratches and smudges; and using many of the new features without a Zune Pass music subscription can be disappointing.

The bottom line: The smaller, flash-based Zune, with a unique focus on music discovery, is a fierce competitor to the iPod Nano.

Read ZDNet's full review

Price: $149.99; 4GB and 16GB models cost $129.99 and $199.99 respectively

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Motorola Q Global (AT&T)

Motorola Q Global (AT&T)

Editors' rating: 3.5

The good: The Motorola Q Global ships with Windows Mobile 6.1 out of the box and offers HSDPA support, Bluetooth, and GPS.

The bad: The Moto Q Global lacks Wi-Fi and can be sluggish at times. The smartphone is also a tad bulky.

The bottom line: The Motorola Q Global brings an updated look and the latest Windows Mobile operating system to the messaging-centric smartphone.

Read ZDNet's full review

Price range: $149.99 with a two-year contract

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Plantronics Voyager 835

Plantronics Voyager 835

Editors' rating: 3.5

The good: The Plantronics Voyager 835 is a discreet and comfortable Bluetooth headset with excellent sound quality. It also has Multipoint, which lets it pair with more than one device at a time.

The bad: The Plantronics Voyager 835 doesn't have extra ear tip sizes, and has a rather boring design.

The bottom line: The Plantronics Voyager 835 is a great choice for mobile professionals looking for a business-like headset that does its job well.

Read ZDNet's full review

Price: $119, but street price may drop to about $99

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Samsung HT-TZ512T

Samsung HT-TZ512T

Editors' rating: 3.5

The good: All-in-one home theater system with five-disc DVD/CD changer, wireless rear speakers, and iPod dock; strong digital media playback includes DivX, MP3, WMA, WMV, JPEG files; 5.1 surround-sound system sounds good with movies, better with music.

The bad: Dearth of AV inputs limits expansion options for other sources; wireless rear speakers not truly wireless; no iPod video playback.

The bottom line: The Samsung HT-TZ512T's wireless rear speakers, five-disc changer, and impressive digital media support make it a solid choice for basic home theater duties.

Read ZDNet's full review

Price range: $365.49 - $429.99

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