Macworld US has announced its Best of Show Awards for Macworld Conference and Expo San Francisco 2004.

Editor Online for MacCentral and JimDalrymple said: "Developers showed a level of imagination and integration with their products that has not been seen before. We've seen some impressive trends that will help all Mac users get more from their digital devices."

To be eligible for Best of Show consideration, products were either making their public debut at Macworld Expo or were recently introduced and likely to generate excitement on the show floor. The editors also had to see the products in action, though some evaluations were based on beta versions or prototypes.

The Best of Show winners list and Macworld US' commentary follow:

Apple GarageBand

Apple's newest iLife application means anyone can make music with the help of more than 1,000 prerecorded loops, dozens of MIDI-controlled software instruments, and the capability to record live instruments.


CRYPTO-Server X is the first authentication solution designed for Mac OS X Panther users. All user names and passwords are stored on the token and CRYPTO-Server X generates a one-time password for each log-on attempt, making stolen credentials useless to hackers.

Elgato Systems EyeTV 200/EyeHome

Elgato's EyeTV 200 improves on its previous model by providing realtime MPEG-2 capturing of standard cable television and video from other analog sources (such as VHS). The EyeHome hooks up toyour Ethernet network and brings music, photos, and movies from he Mac to a TV, with one-click setup and a handy remote control.

Freeverse Bumper Car

BumperCar is a fun and easy to use Web browser developed for children. It's based on Apple's Webcore technology – as used in Safari and OmniWeb. It offers a colourful, playful interface so kids can surf the Web without seeing inappropriate content.

Freeverse Toy Sight

Now iSight and FireWire-based Webcam users can become part of the game with ToySight. ToySight works with a FireWire-based video camera or Webcam, including Apple's iSight, and puts players directly in the game as they use their on-screen image to interact with objects and control surfaces in the game.

Kaidan PiXiMation

PiXiMation creates QTVR using advanced techniques to generate properly spaced and indexed image frames even if you're spinning an object by hand. In the past, special motorized turntables were required to achieve the same effect. PiXiMation accepts video from a variety of sources including.

LaCie Bigger Disk

The LaCie Bigger Disk offers 1 terabyte of storage space in a 5.25-inch form factor and can be connected to any computer equipped with FireWire 800, FireWire 400, iLink/DV, Hi-Speed USB 2.0 or USB1.1. The Big Disk allows users to store nearly two years of continuous music and up to one month of non-stop MPEG-2 video.

Slim Devices Squeezebox

The sequel to the SliMP3 music server offers wired or wireless streaming of most audio formats or MP3 Internet radio from a Mac to the home stereo. It offers both analog and digital outputs, and multiple players can be installed around the house for individual or synchronized play.

Camdynamics lens&light optimizer

This lens&light optimizer offers users a way to correct image imperfections. After loading an image you choose the camera manufacturer, the lens used, focal length, aperture, and other options and then set the lightness and distortion correctness for the final image.

Roxio Toast with Jam

The high-level audio features of this product now boast an improved user interface, better crossfading options, and burning integrated into Jam itself (rather than sending files to Toast). It also includes 2-channel Dolby Digital software for encoding and decoding, along with Bias Peak Express audio editing software.

Rogue Amoeba NiceCast

NiceCast provides simple broadcast and streaming of any audio in OS X. You can use it to set up an Internet radio station, or simply stream an iTunes library over the Internet so you can listen to your music from anywhere in the world. It also offers several audio effects, and supports both VST and AudioUnit plug-ins.

Software Mackiev Kid Pix Deluxe 3 for OS X.

Software Mackiev has more than just created an OS X version of kid's creativity software KidPix; the company has rebuilt it from the ground up. The new version offers smoother graphics, updated animations, a better interface, and seamless integration with Apple's iLife programs. Kids can quickly import photos and songs, add drawings, animations, or text, and then export finished animation sequences to an iMovie project.

WiebeTech G5 Jam

Squarely aimed at Power Mac G5 owners, the G5Jam allows users to increase their Macs internal storage to four drives and even RAID that set-up with Mac OS X's Soft RAID utility. The resulting performance exceeds 200MB per second.

You Software You Control 1.0

This menu utility makes it easy to reach buried files quickly, but it's far more than an alias maker. From anywhere on your Mac, the eleven menu modules let you control iTunes (from viewing track information to pausing a song), customize contact and calendar information, beef up OS X's Menu Bar Clock, access recent programs and files from any menu, track stocks and keep up on news headlines. The pasteboard module let's you copy multiple items that don't write over each other and paste them as RTF or unformatted text. You can place You Control menus in the main Menu Bar or a corner of your screen. You can also call up menus with hot keys.