Subject: General Tech | July 19, 2014 - 04:12 AM | Scott Michaud
Tagged: valve, espn, DOTA 2, DOTA
eSports? Did someone say sports? ESPN is there. DOTA 2 is one of the most popular PC Games, #2 in Raptr's listing, and currently the most played Valve game (by more than a factor of two over Counter-Strike: GO). The International 2014 is their fourth multi-million dollar tournament. This year's prize pool of almost $11 million USD.
And ESPN is broadcasting it on TV through their ESPN3 channel. On Sunday, the second-last day of the tournament, ESPN2 will air "Live from The International" at 11:30 PM EDT (UTC-4). This will have match highlights, discussion, interviews with players, and an interview with Gabe Newell. The tournament will host its grand finals the next day, on ESPN3.
Subject: Motherboards | July 24, 2014 - 03:33 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: biostar, z97, Hi-Fi Z97WE
BioStar's Hi-Fi Z97WE is so named for the EMI shield over the Realtek ALC892 audio codec though on the board The Tech Report tested it was less than effective at blocking noise from interfering with the headphone out when the GPU was under heavy load. On the other hand the Digital S/PDIF audio out is rare to see on a lower priced motherboard and will be attractive to some users, even with the lack of digital encoding. The two PCIe 16x slots can handle dual GPUs at 8x speeds but perhaps the most attractive feature is the M.2 slot for an SSD to be inserted. Check out how well it overclocks and the overall stability of this $124 motherboard in the full review.
"Biostar's latest Haswell motherboard sells for only $125, but it's specced like pricier alternatives. You get an overclocking-friendly Z97 chipset, PCIe slots primed for multi-GPU configs, an M.2 slot for next-gen SSDs, and upgraded audio hardware. We spent some quality time with the Hi-Fi Z97WE to see what it's really like, and you might be surprised by what we learned."
Here are some more Motherboard articles from around the web:
- ASUS Maximus VII Gene micro-ATX @ [H]ard|OCP
- Gigabyte Z97-D3H Motherboard Review @ Modders-Inc
- ASUS Z97I-PLUS mini-ITX Motherboard Review @ Techgage
- MSI Z97 MPOWER MAX AC @ eTeknix
- ASUS Maximus VII GENE Z97 Motherboard Review @ Hardware Canucks
- MSI Z97 Gaming 9 AC Motherboard Review @HiTech Legion
- Asus Maximus VII Ranger & Hero Motherboard @ Kitguru
- ASUS Z97 Gryphon Armor Edition @ eTeknix
- Gigabyte Z97X-GAMING G1 WIFI-BK (Intel LGA 1150) @ techPowerUp
- Gigabyte Z97X-SOC FORCE Motherboard Review @ Madshrimps
- ASUS Z97-A @ X-bit Labs
- ASRock FM2A88X Extreme6+ @ Benchmark Reviews
Subject: Systems | July 21, 2014 - 03:53 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: shuttle, htpc, SFF, DS81, barebones
The Shuttle DS81 ships with an H81 motherboard, an external 90 W power adapter and the 190 x 165 x 43mm case of course. That means you have your choice of installed Linux or Windows and any combination of 65W or lower Haswell processor, memory and storage device to add to the ~$200 enclosure. For outputs it provides HDMI and two DisplayPorts which means it can theoretically support 4K video, a pair of both USB 2.0 and 3.0 ports and two LAN ports as WiFi is optional. While it has only headphone out for audio, the onboard codec is capable of outputting digital sound through DP or HDMI which would be the preference of many users. Check out MadShrimps full review here.
"The Slim PC chassis from been reincarnated in the shape of the DS81 which supports the latest Haswell processors with a TDP up to 65W and supports 4K video output thanks to the DirectX 11.1 IGP. The DS81 chassis features a 1.3-liter slim design with a thickness of only 43mm, so it is suitable for many commercial applications; a VESA mount is also included as a bundle in order to mount the device behind the monitor."
Here are some more Systems articles from around the web:
- Shuttle Fanless Slim-PC DS437T @ techPowerUp
- Gigabyte BRIX Pro Review @ Hardware Secrets
- Amazon Fire TV: A Nice Device For Internet Video Streaming @ Phoronix
- Amazon Fire TV vs Google Chromecast @ The Inquirer
Subject: General Tech | July 21, 2014 - 05:39 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: turtle beach, gaming headset, Ear Force Z SEVEN, audio
At some time in the very near future, if this naming trend does not reverse itself, the wraparound portion of headphones will have to be enlarged to be able to display the entire brand name legibly. The latest lengthy moniker is the Turtle Beach Ear Force Z SEVEN Gaming Headset with removable unidirectional microphone and Audio Control Unit. The mic is self explanatory but the ACU is an external sound card with voice morphing and headphone equalizer presets and has outputs for PC, Mac and Xbox; it is not a booster amp. Overall Legit Reviews found this headset to be a great generalist but not as good for specific usage such as taking advantage of positional in a game. Read on to see if they peak your interest.
"Turtle Beach is perhaps a name better known amongst console gamers since you can easily find their Ear Force lineup of headsets somewhere close to where the boxed console games are in certain stores. Most Turtle Beach Ear Force headsets are compatible with computers or any electronic device with a 3.5 mm jack nonetheless because most gamers or even most people make due with one set of headphones for all their devices. The Turtle Beach Z SEVEN we have for review is actually part of a much larger family of SEVEN headsets. Read on to find out more about it!"
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- Tt eSPORTS SYBARIS Wired And Wireless Gaming Headset Review @ NikKTech
- Superlux HD668B Headphones @ Benchmark Reviews
- Roccat Syva High Performance In-Ear Headset @ eTeknix
- LUXA2 GroovyW Bluetooth Speaker with Wireless Charging Station Review @ NikKTech
- Cowin Cutebeat BT Vibration Speaker @ Kitguru
- Creative Sound BlasterAxx Axx 200 Intelligent Wireless Sound System Review @ NikKTech
Subject: General Tech, Mobile | July 24, 2014 - 10:04 PM | Scott Michaud
Tagged: shield tablet, shield, nvidia
Just a small note to continue with our SHIELD Tablet coverage. It turns out that the $299 (16GB) SHIELD Tablet, its cover, and its wireless controller are all available for pre-order on Amazon. The unit will actually be available on July 29th, but we were not aware that pre-orders would be possible until now.
While Ryan wrote a preview for the SHIELD Tablet, he is not giving a final word until he gets it into his lab and is capable of giving a full review. Also, we do not know how many units will be available. Whether you should pre-order, or wait for Ryan's final word, is up to you.
Thanks to our fans for alerting us of this availabilty in the IRC during TWiCH.
Introduction, Specifications and Packaging
A few months back, we took a look at the ADATA Premier Pro SP920 series of SSDs. Those came equipped with the Marvell 88SS9189 controller. Marvell SSD controllers have always done a good job, and they were among the first to support SATA 6Gbit speeds. Crucial was one of the first to adopt the Marvell controller into their SATA SSD products, so it seems fitting that we revisit the 88SS9189 controller in the form of Micron's Crucial M550 Series of SSDs:
Being one of the big manufacturers of SSDs, Micron has some cool production videos. Here's one of their videos covering the production of flash all the way through to the assembly of an SSD. We actually toured one of these plants a few years back. Good stuff:
Subject: Cases and Cooling | July 25, 2014 - 03:52 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: Silverstone, raven rv05
The newest Raven from SilverStone is the RV05 which continues the unique look and motherboard orientation of the Raven series. The filtration system continues in the same pattern as previous models with most of the removable screens accessible without needing to disassemble the case. At 9.5"W x 20.8"H x 19.6"L it is smaller than the previous models which has reduced the number of 2.5" and 3.5" drives which will fit into the case; you will have to decide if the smaller size is worth the sacrifice. Check out the sound and temperature levels of this case in [H]ard|OCP's full review.
"The SilverStone Raven series of cases long ago broke the mold when it comes to "normal" computer chassis. Its design execution has always been good and the Ravens' airflow characteristics are excellent. Today SilverStone pushes the new Raven RV05 out there a little bit further in terms of design and function."
Here are some more Cases & Cooling reviews from around the web:
- Corsair Carbide Series Spec-01 Mid-Tower Chassis @ eTeknix
- Fractal Design Core 3300 Mid Tower Case Review @ Neoseeker
- Silverstone Raven RV05 @ Benchmark Reviews
- Corsair Obsidian Series 450D @ [H]ard|OCP
- BitFenix Neos Mid-Tower Chassis @ eTeknix
- Raidmax Scorpio V Review @ OCC
- Fractal Design Core 3500 @ Benchamrk Review
- Corsair Obsidian Series 450D Mid-Tower @ [H]ard|OCP
- Phanteks Enthoo Luxe Case @ Kitguru
- Phanteks Enthoo Pro Full-Tower Case Review @ Legit Reviews
- Aerocool Dead Silence DS200 Mid-Tower @ eTeknix
- Phanteks Enthoo Luxe @ techPowerUp
- BitFenix Recon 5-Channel Touchscreen Fan Controller Review @HiTech Legion
- DeepCool Gabriel Low-Profile CPU Cooler Review @ NikKTech
- be quiet! Shadow Rock Slim CPU Cooler @ eTeknix
- Thermaltake NiC C5 @ techPowerUp
- Be Quiet! Dark Rock 3 CPU Cooler Review @ NikKTech
- CRYORIG C1 Top-Down CPU Cooler Review @ NikKTech
Subject: General Tech | July 23, 2014 - 01:08 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: dropbox, data privacy, encryption
Dropbox has faced many questions about the privacy of the data held on their service after modified links were shown to successfully connect to private portions of accounts as well as their ability to hand over all your content in readable form to authorities. While for many the lack of encryption is not much of a concern, businesses cannot afford to be so lax with potentially valuable client data stored on Dropbox. This use of Dropbox by businesses is far more common than you may think and may expand with the announcement of Dropbox for Business and the expanded services available for this new service.
For those with security concerns about storing unencrypted data on Dropbox it would seem that the recommendation is to use third party client side encryption software. That does mean that the new search features will not work as Dropbox will be unable to index files as they pointed out to The Inquirer and other media. Dropbox does have a decent reputation for protecting the data they store but for those intending to store proprietary data on the cloud the balance between ease of use and privacy should be considered before moving to any cloud storage provider.
"DROPBOX HAS DEFENDED its record on privacy following allegations by NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden that it is "hostile to privacy"."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- THUD! WD plonks down SIX TERABYTE 'consumer NAS' fatboy @ The Register
- Experts gathered round corpse of PC market: It's ALIVE! Alive, we tell you @ The Register
- DIY Conductive Paint For All Your Wearable Needs @ Hack a Day
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