Name that Ware November 2007

The Ware for November 2007 is shown below:

I decided to play a bit with the camera angle on this one to make it a little more challenging, because the prize is extra-special this time: a chumby. You, too can be a Chumby Insider! I’ll probably do the judging within the next two weeks, to try and get the prize to the winner before Christmas! And yes, I’ll pay for shipping to you even if you’re not in the US, although you are responsible for all local duties/tariffs/taxes (some countries may levy a hefty duty on consumer electronics imports).

The prize will go to the person who has the closest guess on both the ware and the purchase price of the ware. Accuracy of the ware guess is the first criteria — a link to the exact device or naming the exact model number is considered to be a 100% match, while correctly naming the function of device is considered the weakest match that would pass the threshold for winning — and if more than one person guesses the ware accurately, then the person with the best guess on the negotiated purchase price of the ware, within “absolute-delta” rules (not “Price is Right” rules), wins. Given a tie on that, then the chronologically first poster will win, but I’d like to try and make the game less about being first to post and more about accuracy.

As usual, you may use md5sums to obfuscate your answer to prevent copy-cats, but please don’t forget to post the plaintext back on the site for your answer in about a week: I can’t judge your entry if you don’t give me the plaintext eventually!

Good luck!

37 Responses to “Name that Ware November 2007”

  1. Travis says:

    I’m going to go out on a limb and say that it is a USB MP3 player. I’m basing this solely on the audio jack at the back and what appears to be a metal heat-sink on what is probably some flash on the underside.

    I’m kind of perplexed by what looks like pads (around the outer part of the top) for RF shielding around what would probably be the MP3 decoding circuitry. I guess this would be used to attain FCC cert.

  2. Travis says:

    Oops, I forgot the price and possible model… I’m going to slightly alter my previous response and say it is a USB MP3 player with integrated FM (hence the shielding).

    It could be this model from Maplin:

    It retails for 25 British Pounds (about $50 USD)

  3. Flo says:

    My guess is a USB to Audio Converter Stick.

  4. Eliot says:

    USB MP3 player sounds like a reasonable guess. RF shielding? Maybe it does FM transmit as well.

    My only other guess would be an oscilloscope.

  5. A. Walton says:

    It’s a USB FM Radio stick, the one that you’ve been playing with adding to future Chumbies maybe?


  6. jovino says:

    My guess is that it’s one of those cheapo generic MP3 players like these ones…

    or this one…

    The only reason I am guessing those is because the headphone jack is on the side of the unit. Originally I thought it was a Nomad MuVo, but the jack is on the end of those units. The MuVo’s guts are very similar and it also has two boards that connect together. Taking that into consideration, this says to me that this is an MP3 player. Most players I am familiar with have plugs on the end, but this cheapo one is the only one I am familiar with that has a plug on its side.

    As far as price goes? They’re usually under $30.

    Please-o-please-o-please, let me be right. :)

  7. A. Walton says:

    Hmm, as for pricing, I see they have listed £17.00 for the reference design, so somewhere in that ballpark ($35ish USD).

  8. Karl says:

    It’s a 50 cent Euro coin, of course! I’m guessing you probably got it for about .50 euros. ;)

  9. Bitrex says:

    My guess:


    Back with the plain text after a while!

  10. Flo says:

    There are 2x 50 cent Euro coins stacked upon each other, Karl… i’m kinda confused by the amount of parts that’s on the device.

    A MP3 player is probable due to the audio jack and the black thing behind it (maybe for stabilization, to wear it with a cord), but the usb mp3 player i’ve seen had alot less parts, i can’t imagine one using that many parts. Same goes for USB to Audio Converters and FM Radios (they got like half the parts).

    So, to add something new, i’m guessing it’s a DVB-T stick – probably a cheap one that was produced in Shenzhen, the black thing behind the jack would be a ir-diode, and the jack to connect the antenna.

    From the positioning of the jack, i’d guess it’s a for like 20$ OEM and 40$ in stores.

  11. Bitrex says:

    correction on the MD5 sum:


    Much better.

  12. Pedro says:

    My guess:


  13. Mark says:

    So there are two boards in this USB stick. The top board is an RF transciever of some sort. You can see the gold-plated tracks where the shield can sits on top, and you can see the shield can on the bottom. The RF board is divided into two sections. I’m guessing “RX” and “TX” or maybe an IF section. Looks like a fairly large SAW filter in the foreground. And is that an audio jack at the end of the board?

    There are too many components for this to be a simple FM tuner. The many components look like a younger, less-integrated technology. It is too complex for Bluetooth as well. It is either a cell-phone-on-USB gadget or a… let me check eBay. aha!

    It is a 0f3260dac334a7accd318ca533903468

  14. Mark says:

    Ok, the 0.50 euro coin is making me question my guess. I was thinking the US standard, but the rest of the world uses different standards for this application. So maybe it is a 563f00c063fa575a19ad5781980b0e44 or e8f0a00a91135575062ed35c8cba8abe.

  15. Li Gangyi says:

    Might be one of those USB audio dongles with wireless capability, probably advertised with like 50m range. My guess is the actual USB dac device is on the bottom board, maybe a TI or C-media chip, the top part looks like the Tx section, PLL and RF amp prolly.
    Price of the whole thing, I’d say around $40ish (USD).

    Of coz the other ‘item’ in the picture would be the .50 euro coin.
    You prolly got it for .50 euros. =p

  16. Roby says:

    The ware is a USB DVB-T and analog TV Decorder / Tuner (jack used for antenna plug and maybe there is an infrared rx integrated on the pcb for the remote controller).
    It cost about 7.3 US $ / 4.99 Euro on ebay but you can find a “brand” one for about 115 Euro(e.g. terratec Cinergy Hybrid T USB XS); it depends but I guess you payed around 12 US $.

  17. Li Gangyi says:

    I’d think if the ‘ware’ was tilted the other way, with more component markings clear, the guess would have been more accurate, although that’d also remove the challenge….

  18. Jered says:

    Wow, competition is rough here! DVB-T seems like a good guess, but those usually have a bulky coax F-type connector on them, not a 1/8″ jack.

    I’m going to guess that it’s a USB EVDO modem. I think I’m wrong, though, because it looks like the PCB is only a hair wider than the USB connector, and the EVDO modems out there today are a bit larger. But, there are some smaller ones — say the Novatel Wireless Ovation U727 at $150 before rebates?

  19. Li Gangyi says:

    Jered : well a chumby is at stake here … lol

  20. Gaël says:

    I guess iPod shuffle is the obvious answer here.

  21. […] Bunnie Huang is giving away a Chumby, all you have to do is accomplish the next to impossible (for me anyway) task of identifying his piece of mystery hardware.. and be the first one to do so. […]

  22. Fowl says:

    I was going to say DVB-T tuner also, but i’m going to go with dual mode Analog/Digital TV tuner. Price? about 60USD? no idea really.

  23. Felix says:

    In my eyes it looks way too complex for a bluetooth dongle, a FM-radio, or mp3 stick. The bronze thing in the middle looks like it’s an integrated antenna, which pretty much rules out DVB-T, because it usually requires much larger antennas. Also, the technology used reminds me more of mobile phones than DVB-T receivers (agreed, this might change with DVB-H).

    I’d immediately second Jered, if there wouldn’t be the headphone jack. I’ve search trough dozens of EVDO and UMTS (hello, euro) usb-sticks, but couldn’t find any in the given form factor – most of the EVDO sticks are in fact expresscard with USB adapters (expresscard can use PCIe or USB, so an USB adapter is trivial if the card itself only uses USB). That also explains the form factor of most EVDO “sticks”.

    The thing next to the coin looks like it could hold a sim card, though. I remotely remember a GPRS stick i’ve once used, which had pretty much this layout, and had the possibility to attach a headset, so you could phone with it. Unfortunately, I don’t remember the details. It had a blue housing ;)

    Price? Back then, it was $200. Now? $20-$30 on ebay maybe, as GPRS is so oldschool in europe now (hello apple).

  24. bitrex says:

    I don’t think my guess is correct, but I’d love to know how Flo’s post was inserted at 5:42 AM between the two I made that Monday morning – because it sure wasn’t there at 5:48, and it wasn’t there at any other time on Monday morning either.

  25. bitrex says:

    We know it’s not Bluetooth – Denmark hasn’t accepted the Euro coins yet so Bluetooth King Of the Danes is out – that logic makes sense right? But if it is based on a wireless standard that’s popular in Europe I don’t think it’s GPRS either – could it be a prototype of the Samba EVDO USB 3G Modem with audio interface that was never put into production? 1 Euro is my longshot guess for price on this longshot guess on the ware. :B

  26. bunnie says:

    Comments with links are held in moderation to cut spam. When they are approved, they are inserted back in the order that they were submitted, not in the order that they are approved. Therefore, you will occasionally see comments appear in between other comments, depending on how long it takes for me to moderate the queue.

  27. Felix says:

    There is also the b404cc579564bd0d98bb66a815826867 and/or1a820b0955bedff447a47c2f1ee7ebb9 (UMTS vs. CDMA/EVDO), which at least matches the headphone plug as well as approximately the width and height. Still the length doesn’t match, but I just found out it has an internal battery, so yes, this is my guess now. After going trough all the “FCC fridays” on engadget, I haven’t found a closer match ;). (Price? Internet says a whopping $500, so i’d guess the half of it.)

  28. bitrex says:

    Thanks for the info, Bunnie. After sleeping on it I’m not sure anymore that this ware has anything to do with EVDO or GPRS – the guts just don’t look right….there’s that RF section though. It doesn’t look right for bluetooth, too complex for a usb FM transmitter…I think it’s a 368313723004e3d14bd79a4219c1a902. If I’m right it would explain the reason the ware has been titled at that angle, because the obscured side would show something rather unusual for a USB stick :) price paid – $100.

  29. bunnie says:

    I think there is a winner somewhere in this list of comments — so it’s time to post your plaintexts if you want to be eligible for the prize!

  30. Felix says:

    Anydata ADU-510D (b404cc579564bd0d98bb66a815826867),
    Anydata ADU-610D (1a820b0955bedff447a47c2f1ee7ebb9) (ouch, that’s a typo, i’ve meant ADU-610W of course.)

  31. Daniel says:

    The thing on the bottom looks like it could be a sim card slot, which leads me to believe that this is indeed a UMTS/HSDPA USB stick. It could be one of the two web’n’walk sticks by T-Mobile (see although they officially don’t sport an antenna connector. If this were correct I’d estimate the purchase price to be about 160 Euros (or less if you took out a contract).

  32. bitrex says:


    TrackStick GPS Data Logger

  33. James says:

    Close, but the connector looks like its on the wrong side:

    US $8.81 not counting shipping.

    My first guess is HDTV reciever but it lots a lot like it wants a sim card.

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