DVD Ripping Tools, HD Antenna, MP3 Players, Wondercon!

Rip any DVD with AnyDVD, MP3 Player Reccos, Game Developers Conference, HD picture frame antenna, Spoof a MAC address, get kicked out of school. Wondercon!

1UP.com's reviews editor Garnett Lee joins us as cohost today...

... and he's got the scoop from the Game Developers Conference '08 (The PC Gaming Alliance was big news, sort of... and where is Sony's Home for the Playstation??? )

Antennas Direct's hid its newest HDTV antenna inside a picture frame... Jim Louderback put the PF7 Picture Frame Antenna thru the paces and found it does a great job sucking down analog HDTV. It's cheap, too!

We love the comic books, so our producers Roger and Serafina took a trip to Wondercon, and came back with quite the collection of video.

Can't rip that DVD? You need some stronger tools.... AnyDVD is the bomb at gettting around copy protection on Windows.

On OS X, the folks at Handbrake have a step by step guide for dealing with disks that won't rip: you'll need Fairmount, DVD2OneX and this page!

Yahya wants a recco on a portable music player... that delivers excellent sound quality, and maybe that isn't an iPod. First off, make sure you've got quality audio files to listen to... and a decent set of headphones. (Garnett's convinced the player is the least of your worries.)

Patrick's spent a bunch of time with the Zune and it's quite good. We've also heard good things about Creative's Zen V Plus, the oh so stylish iRiver Clix Gen 2 is a great (if pricey) follow up to the most excellent iriver Clix. If you're looking for video playback, too, the editors at Cnet are big on the Archos 605.

Several folks want to buy Patrick's old Xbox 360 HD DVD drive.... can anybody beat $7.37?

Why does an HDTV cost more than the same sized LCD monitor? Good question, Christopher.

Free file o' the week:

Quick Media Converter lets you drag and drop video into 13 different formats, including PSP, iPod and web friendly formats!

Turning a vertical PC case on its side and running it that way hurt it? We wouldn't worry, Benedict. Patrick's run most of his PCs in horizontal mode with no ill effects. Just don't cover the vents. (They do take up more desktop space, that way, tho!)

Dave, Michael and "B" wrote in with ideas to help Jesse get his Xbox 360 connected to the his dorm's ResNet... and Eric sent a warning that spoofing a MAC address can get you kicked out of school. (It got him tossed!)

What's a good program to format you computer Naevek? Whatever comes with the OS, Windows or OS X will work fine for partitioning a drive.

If you want to do a 'non destructive' partition, ie, you want to change a partition without wiping all the data from inside it, Paragon's Parition Manager is the gold standard, tho GParted, the Gnome Partition Editor is an excellent Open Source alternative. (FYI, here's a great guide to modifying partitions with GParted)

No matter what tool you use, we recco backing up your data before you resize a partition... just in case.

Now, Naevek, if you're looking to format and wipe a drive before you, say, sell the computer it's inside of, our favorite tool is Darik's Boot and Nuke... it should be more than enough to protect your identity... tho Wikipedia says that as of November 2007, "overwriting is no longer a DoD-acceptable sanitization method for magnetic media".

Converting FLAC files to MP3 files? No problem, John. We use dBpoweramp, tho you will have to pay for MP3 support... ya know, since you're using a Zune, you might want to go with WMA instead of MP3... you should be able to do that for free in dBpoweramp.