14 Intriguing Products From CES 2011 Opening Night

CES Kickoff

CES 2011 kicks off this week in Las Vegas in usual fashion with a bevy of hot new products that would make any tech fanatic drool. Here's a look at some of the coolest.

Rohan Marley, the 38-year-old son of Reggae legend Bob Marley, was on hand to talk about his family's new line of audio products, developed in conjunction with consumer electronics vendor HoMedics. Bob Marley was known for caring deeply about environmental concerns, and in this case the apple doesn't fall far from the tree as the new line of Marley audio products has been designed in eco-friendly, sustainable fashion.

Marley Audio Products Steal the Show

The family of Bob Marley, in partnership with HoMedics, showed off its inaugural wave of audio electronics products from The House of Marley. The initial product line includes earbuds, headphones, docking stations, speakers and boom boxes, and products are priced between $29.99 and $499.99.

The Marley audio products are made of recycled materials and come with storage bags made from natural fibers such as cotton and hemp. However, the Marley audio products don't skimp on performance and include the kind of bass response that can leave listeners smiling and nodding their heads along with the soothing, spirit-lifting bass lines.

Hand-Cranked Power When You Need It Most

Eton, a Palo Alto, Calif.-based vendor, showed off a variety of products that come with hand turbine power generators, including several forthcoming products developed in conjunction with the American Red Cross.

In the background is the Road Torq, a self-powered roadside spotlight and emergency beacon that can allow for a quick tire changes at night. At center is Axis, a self powered "safety hub" with AM/FM/NOAA and USB cell phone charger. And at right is Rover, a self-powered compact AM/FM/NOAA weather radio with flashlight and USB cell phone charger.

The Greenest Energy There Is

Cleveland isn't synonymous with consumer electronics, but a company called Tremont Electric hopes to change that with nPower Peg, a product it's billing as the world’s first passive kinetic energy charger for handheld electronic devices. The $159 nPower Peg captures energy that's generated while a person is walking, running or biking and stores it for later use. At a time when everyone's talking about green energy, it doesn't get any more sustainable than this.

Modded To The Max

Lenovo already has a well-established footprint in businesses, and it's trying to expand its presence in the consumer market by showing that its wares can be shaped to fit even the most outlandish tastes. Lenovo's booth was mobbed with CES attendees craning for a better look at this heavily modified, liquid cooled PC, which also happens to resemble a night club for techno-loving hamsters.

Personal Trainer That Rides On Your Arm

BodyMedia, Pittsburgh, Pa., is aware that people sometimes need help when it comes to breaking bad habits and getting in shape. At CES, BodyMedia showed off a wearable armband that keeps track of weight, physical activity and even sleep patterns.

The idea is to give folks accurate data to use in the battle against inertia and couch potatoism, and BodyMedia has achieved FDA status as a Class II medical device. If you're the type who makes excuses, though, you might want to give this product a miss, as hard physiological data can be a tough teacher.

Compact Projector For The iPad

WowWee, a company that rose to fame in 2004 with the release of its unnervingly realistic Robosapien robot, this year showed off Cinemin Slice, a multimedia pico projector audio dock that works with Apple's iPad. Cinemin Slice offers WVGA-resolution DLP projection, rich stereo sound and can connect to nearly any device with video-out functionality, via Apple 30-pin, HDMI, VGA and AV.

With Cinemin Slice, folks can watch movies on the ceiling over their bed or subject their neighbors to the unique form of mundaneness that's found in most families' vacation photos. Cinemin Slice ships at the end of January and is priced at $430.

An Oven Made Better With Technology

Huntington Beach, Calif.-based home appliance vendor Thermador was on hand with its new Steam & Convection Oven, which launched in early October. This isn't your grandfather's oven: It comes with three distinct cooking options -- steam, true convection and a combination of the two -- and also includes 40 automatic food programs, nine advanced cooking modes and other advanced features. With a price tag north of $2,500, it's not cheap, but Thermador's Steam & Convection Oven will give cooking enthusiasts plenty to work with.

Newcomer To Connected Car Market

Mavizon Technlologies is taking on automotive industry heavyweights with its flagship Mavia connected car solution. Mavia keeps track of automotive logistics to ensure that motorists' engines are running smoothly, and it can also be set up to text message emergency alerts with GPS location in case of an accident. And unlike OnStar, which is mainly available in newer cars, Mavia can be installed in most cars 1996 or newer. Mavia is coming soon to participating retailers and car dealerships.

Blood Pressure Monitor For iPhone

Withings, a Issy-les-Moulineaux, France-based company, launched its iPhone Connected Blood Pressure Monitor, a device that lets people keep tabs on their health as they're taking care of business during the course of their day. With easy installation and an adjustable arm band, the product allows users to record blood pressure information and share it with their doctor, either online or in person. There are many ridiculous apps on Apple's App Store, but this is actually an app that makes sense to folks that need up-to-date data.

Stylish Shredder

In today's litigious, dumpster-diving society, paper shredders have become a necessary item for businesses and individuals. But these devices are typically unimpressive when it comes to design aesthetics and perform their paper-chomping duties without anyone giving them a second look.

However, Black & Decker doesn't agree that shredders should be banished to the shadows but, rather, celebrated as shining examples of the ingenuity of industrial design. At CES, Black & Decker trotted out this model that could be used to spice up the decor of just about any room. Who says shredding should be boring?

Baby Monitoring Via iPhone

Withings, the aforementioned vendor of the Blood Pressure Monitor For iPhone, also gave CES attendees a look at its Smart Baby Monitor, a video-equipped device that allows parents to keep a watchful eye over their little ones from any mobile device running iOS.

Baby monitors traditionally have been pretty primitive devices and audio performance leaves much to be desired, but Withings has included a microphone and a speaker. This device also measures the temperature and humidity of the bedroom.

Lifeline To Civilization -- And Social Networks

Anyone who's been out of cell phone range knows it can be pretty terrifying to think about worst-case scenarios. At CES, Spot LLC, a subsidiary of Globalstar, is showing folks a way to stay connected while in far-flung locales.

Spot Connect, a software-plus-device (pictured) solution, makes it possible to message over the Globalstar satellite network from smartphone operating systems.

Users can send messages and GPS coordinates from just about anywhere on Earth, and they can also update their Facebook and Twitter statuses. Get ready for a new wave of extreme outdoor social tweets like "being chased by hungry polar bear" and "just summited K2, what an incredible view."

1080p HD Video Goggles

Liquid Image, a Hong Kong-based firm with U.S. offices in Antelope, Calif., has long been known for its camera- and video camera-equipped scuba masks and ski goggles. But the quality of these cameras hasn't always been on par with ones that aren't embedded in outdoor eyewear.

At CES, Liquid Image unveiled a pair of goggles with 1080p HD video recording capability, one that's designed for skiing and the other for mountain biking. They're slated for launch in October. At $400, these are the very definition of luxury items, but you have to give credit to Liquid Image for continuing to push the image quality envelope.

Lexmark's Office Printer Of The Future

If fax machines of yesteryear could have dreamed about what their descendants would look like, they'd probably have come up with a product much like Lexmark's new all-in-one Genesis printer/copier/scanner. With a touch-screen interface and streamlined design, the Genesis almost looks like something to watch movies on instead of a device built to speed mundane office tasks.

Lexmark calls the Genesis a "now-in-one" printer, and it's equipped with a 10-megapixel image sensor that scans documents almost instantly. At $400, the Genesis may be out of reach for the mass market, but it still managed to catch the eye of many attendees at CES opening night.