PC Perspective Live Review Recap: Z77 Motherboard Roundup

Subject: Motherboards, Processors, Chipsets | April 13, 2012 - 11:37 PM |
Tagged: Z77, video, msi, live review, Intel, gigabyte, ECS, asus

A PC Perspective Live Review Recap is a recorded version of a previously live streamed event from http://pcper.com/live.  If you couldn't make the original air time, or simply want to re-watch, the on-demand version is provided below!

Z77 chipset based motherboards are already available and on the market and while we can't share performance or details on the Ivy Bridge processor yet, we can show off and discuss the Z77 chipset and motherboards.  In our Live Review we did a quick unboxing and preview of several models including:

  • MSI Z77A-GD65 - $169
  • Gigabyte Z77X-UD5H - $189
  • Intel DZ77GA-70K - $239
  • ASUS P8Z77-V Deluxe - $274
  • ECS Z77H2-AX (Non Golden Model - $164)

For your enjoyment; a little dual Xeon action

Subject: Systems | April 10, 2012 - 02:48 PM |
Tagged: asus, Z9 PE-D8 WS, E5-2660, E5-2687W, xeon

The ASUS Z9 PE-D8 WorkStation motherboard is a great platform for those looking to run two LGA2011 Xeon processors, as well as support for up to four GPUs from either NVIDIA or AMD.  As it is a PCIe 3.0 board, you can run two cards at a full 16x, with four cards they would all run at 8x speeds.  Overclock3D tried two different pairs of octocore Xeons, the 3.1GHz E5-2687W and the 2.2GHz E5-2660 to compare the effect of the base clock speeds on performance.  The faster machine is a F@H monster, running over 100,000 PPD, though in other tests it did not out pace the competition by such a wide margin.  That is especially true for gaming tests, where you seem to be better off with a highly overclocked i7-3960X.

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"What would happen if you combined the power of the ASUS Z9PE-D8 WS and two of the latest Xeon processors? We find out."

Here are some more Systems articles from around the web:

Systems

 

Source: Overclock3D

ASUS launches new ROG Maximus V GENE Motherboard

Subject: Motherboards | April 10, 2012 - 12:11 PM |
Tagged: Z77, ROG, PCI-E 3.0, maximus v gene, mATX, lga1155, asus

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Now in its fifth generation, ASUS ROG (Republic of Gamers) has launched its Maximus V Series motherboards with the Maximus V GENE. This micro-ATX powerhouse is built using the latest Intel Z77 chipset, which supports Intel’s latest LGA1155 processors. Featuring full PCI-Express Gen-3 capabilities with Intel’s 3rd Generation processor the Republic of Gamers team equips the Maximus V GENE with exclusive features such as the Extreme Engine DIGI+ II power control design, SupremeFX III gaming audio, Intel Ethernet with ROG GameFirst software and the newly added mPCIe Combo card.

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ROG Exclusive mPCIe Combo Card offer users the best expansion options
The mPCIe Combo card is a new innovation by the ROG team, combining the twin functions of mPCIe with mSATA into a single, extensible add-in card that still allows full use of the PCI-Express slots for multi-GPU graphics. Use an mSATA SSD with Intel’s Smart Response Technology to greatly improve hard-drive performance or as an ultra-fast OS drive to free up standard SATA ports for other uses. The combination of a standard mPCIe socket on the other side allows unique upgrades such as WiFi, Bluetooth, 3G/4G, GPS and other connectivity options.

Premium Hardware, Optimized Design, Best Overclocking
The Maximus V GENE is true to the Republic of Gamers core, as a motherboard built for overclocking. Do not accept imitations or compromise with first generation digital designs. The upgraded Extreme Engine DIGI+ II includes a 8+4+2 (CPU, iGPU, DRAM) phase design offers the best in precise digital power control from two DIGI+ controllers. Combined with class leading ROG UEFI BIOS functions, such as the new pre-configured memory IC profiles, specially sourced electrical components and industry first trace designs the Maximus V Gene yields an unmatched overclocking experience for enthusiasts.

SupremeFX III Sound – Premium Gaming Audio
Designed to bring gamers the best possible integrated audio, the SupremeFX III sound is a wholly separate audio PCB, identified by its ‘redline’ adjoining the main GENE V motherboard. SupremeFX Shielding technology maximizes the audio quality by further isolating the audio processing from EMI, encasing the chipset under a custom aluminum cap. Combined with a large 1500uF buffer capacitor to provide sufficient energy for even the loudest sounds, SupremeFX III attains a lossless audio of up to 110dB SNR. The addition of X-Fi Xtreme Fidelity, EAX Advanced HD 5.0, Creative Alchemy and THX TruStudio PRO complete the lineup of audio technologies that offer an incredibly immersive gaming experience.

Intel Ethernet, ROG GameFirst and LucidLogix Virtu MVP
Intel Ethernet and ROG GameFirst software combines up to 35% saving in CPU usage with network traffic prioritizing, while LucidLogix Virtu MVP support enables a new hybrid graphics mode that boosts overall GPU performance by up to 60%.

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Source: ASUS
Author:
Subject: Mobile
Manufacturer: Apple, ASUS

Introduction, Design and Ergonomics

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Tablets are growing in popularity, but the market is still immature. There are only a handful of serious contenders sold in North America (discounting the cheap knock-offs you can find on eBay and other sites). 

Apple’s iPad is the clear leader in terms of sales. It is trailed by similar Android-powered options like the Samsung Galaxy Tab, the Acer Iconia and (of coures) the ASUS Transformer Prime. We reviewed the Prime when it hit store shelves earlier this year and concluded that it was the best Android tablet money can buy. That makes a comparison with the new iPad obvious.

The constant stream of rants for or against Android and iOS devices in the media may lead you to think that the comparison between the two is highly subjective. I don’t believe that’s the case. There are a number of objective measurements that can be used to judge these products.

Yes, there is always going to be some degree of preference between operating systems, but we’re not really going to get into the iOS vs. Android argument here. That’s a topic that would require its own article, and most likely one several times longer than this comparison. Subjective points will be limited to design and ergonomics. 

Enough talk. It’s time for the competition to begin.

Continue reading our comparison of the new iPad (2012) and the ASUS Transformer Prime!!

Transforming ASUS' Eee Pad by shoving an Ice Cream Sandwich into it

Subject: Mobile | March 19, 2012 - 12:25 PM |
Tagged: asus, Transformer, ice cream sandwich, android 4.0, eee pad, eee pad transformer

The new ASUS Transformer Prime may have had Android 4.0, aka Ice Cream Sandwich, as its OS for a while now, but only recently has the same been true for the original Eee Pad Transformer.  The Tech Report upgraded their Transformer with the approved version of ICS and took it for a spin.  Many of the advantages they found were tied directly into the ASUS version which allowed the tablets base functionality to be integrated with the OS as opposed to being an app running on the OS.  That is not all however as they described the OS upgrade as feeling more like a hardware update thanks to the increased fluidity of the tablets responsiveness. 

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"Asus has been quick to roll out Ice Cream Sandwich updates for its Eee Pad Transformers. We take a closer look at the new OS to see how it fares on the Android tablets."

Here are some more Mobile articles from around the web:

Mobile

 

ASUS offers an all in one NVIDIA 3D display package

Subject: Displays | March 13, 2012 - 12:58 PM |
Tagged: VG278H, tn lcd, asus, 3d display, 27

For those who would like to take advantage of NVIDIA's 3D gaming technology, a good place to start is the ASUS VG278H 27" 3D display.  While it is $650 it comes with NVIDIA's 3D Vision 2 glasses and 3D LightBoost thanks to the LED back lighting.  In this case a TN monitor makes sense as it gives a quick response rate and the viewing angle matters less as your 3D glasses also have a very limited sweet spot.  Hardware Canucks did feel that 27" is a bit large for 1080p resolution but that is part of what keeps the price low compared to other 3D displays and they did notice crosstalk, a problem which plagues many 3D displays.  If you feel the need to game in 3D you could do worse than the ASUS VG278H.

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"Being one of the first 120Hz capable 27" monitors, the ASUS VG278H caused a stir when it was first announced alongside NVIDIA’s 3D Vision 2. Even though it incorporates a TN panel and a resolution of only 1920 x 1080, its price is low enough to be tempting for anyone that wants stereoscopic capabilities without breaking the bank."

Here are some more Display articles from around the web:

Displays

 

Asus Updating Zenbook Line With UX31A and UX21A Ultrabooks

Subject: Mobile | March 12, 2012 - 09:10 PM |
Tagged: widi, ultrabook, ssd, Ivy Bridge, asus zenbook, asus

The Asus UX31 and UX21 have been two popular examples of ultrabooks.  Interestingly, they have been available for purchase for less than 6 months and we are already hearing that the company is planning a refresh with upgraded hardware! The two new ultrabooks will be dubbed the UX21A and UX31A and will replace the UX21 and UX31 respectfully while maintaining the same weight and dimensions.

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The original UX21 ultrabook

Among the new internal hardware updates, Asus will be moving to Ivy Bridge processors, up to 4 GB of low voltage DDR3 1600 memory, and an alleged 512 GB SATA 3 (6Gbps) SSD (solid state drive) option. The Ivy Bridge processors in question will be pulled from Intel's low voltage mobile CPU range and will sport a 17 watt TDP (thermal design power). The Core i3 3217U, Core i5 3317U, and Core i7 3517U will all be configurable options and carry the following specs.

Model Cores Hyper Threading Cache (L3) Clockspeed Turbo Boost (1core / 2cores)
Core i3-3217U 2 Yes 3 MB 1.8 GHz None
Core i5-3317U 2 Yes 3 MB 1.7 GHz 2.6 GHz / 2.4 GHz
Core i7-3517U 2 Yes 4 MB 1.9 GHz 3.0 GHz / 2.8 GHz

 

The new Zenbook ultrabooks will include two USB 3.0 ports, a micro HDMI port, and an SDXC card reader. Wireless connections will further include 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth 4.0, and Intel's WIDI wireless display streaming technology. The new UX31A will have the option of a 1920 x 1080 resolution IPS display with a brightness rating at 350 nits or a non IPS (possibly TN) LCD with 300 nits brightness that maxes out at a 1600 x 900 resolution. The smaller UX21A also has the option for a 1920 x 1080 resolution IPS display; however, the non IPS LCD option's resolution will max out at 1366 x 768, coincidentally just enough to do the 1/3, 2/3 side by side Metro application split in Windows 8.

Lastly, they estimate the battery life of the 13" UX31A and 11" UX21A ultrabooks to be around "six to seven hours" and five hours respectively. Once Ivy Bridge processors have launched and other notebook vendors start shipping their Ivy Bridge powered machines, Asus will reportedly start selling the updated Zenbooks for prices starting at $1,050 and $1,100 for the UX21A and UX31A respectively.

A nice hardware update without jacking up the price too much and likely making the older models cheaper? Sign me up! Are you looking forward to more ultrabooks this year?

Source: The Verge

Be careful which ASUS Zenbook SSD you pick up

Subject: Mobile | March 12, 2012 - 04:00 PM |
Tagged: ultrabook, ssd, asus zenbook, asus

The SSD Review stumbled upon a dirty little secret about the ASUS Zenbook SSD; specifically the SSD part of the name.  It seems that when you buy one, you might be picking up a model with an AData XM11 SSD or it might be a Sandisk U100 but unfortunately they are the same price and a similar model number making them very difficult to tell apart ... until you use it.  The SandForce drive AData drive is significantly faster than the Sandisk drive which uses its own proprietary controller.  The difference is not crippling but it is certainly noticeable when benchmarking and using the system.  The final result was that size does matter, the 11.6" UX21 has SandForce while the 13.3" UX31 does not, though both are still very nice Ultrabooks.

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"If we told you that we spent $2400 to right a wrong in proving something that you as a consumer should be aware of, would you believe us? This report closely examines the ASUS Zenbook. Within the ‘Zen’, ASUS may provide either of two SATA 3 SSDs, these being the AData ‘SandForce Driven’ XM11 or the Sandisk U100. There is no price difference between the two, the product number is the same and the consumer has no way of knowing which they will receive. The performance drop between the two is somewhat unbelievable, however, and we thought this report important enough to invest in one of each Zenbook to educate the consumer on the reality of their potential Zenbook purchase."

Here are some more Mobile articles from around the web:

Mobile

 

Source: SSD Review

Podcast #192 - AMD Radeon HD 7870 and 7850, Z77 Motherboard previews, and a Steam console

Subject: Editorial, General Tech | March 8, 2012 - 04:00 PM |
Tagged: Z77, ssd, podcsat, podcast, msi, Intel, gpu, cpu, asus, amd, 7870, 7850

PC Perspective Podcast #192 - 03/08/2012

Join us this week as we talk about the AMD Radeon HD 7870 and 7850, Z77 Motherboard previews, and a Steam console?

You can subscribe to us through iTunes and you can still access it directly through the RSS page HERE.

The URL for the podcast is: http://pcper.com/podcast - Share with your friends!

  • iTunes - Subscribe to the podcast directly through the iTunes Store
  • RSS - Subscribe through your regular RSS reader
  • MP3 - Direct download link to the MP3 file

Hosts: Ryan Shrout, Jeremy Hellstrom, Josh Walrath, and Allyn Malvantano

This Podcast is brought to you by MSI Computer, and their all new Sandy Bridge Motherboards!

Program length: 54:59

Program Schedule: 

  1. 0:00:42 Introduction
  2. 1-888-38-PCPER or podcast@pcper.com
  3. http://pcper.com/podcast
  4. http://twitter.com/ryanshrout and http://twitter.com/pcper
  5. 0:02:00 Installing Windows 8 Consumer Preview In A VirtualBox Virtual Machine
  6. 0:05:00 AMD Radeon HD 7870 2GB and HD 7850 2GB Pitcairn Review
    1. Radeon HD 7870 2GB vs HD 7850 2GB vs HD 5870 1GB Quick Look
  7. 0:18:30 ASUS Z77 Chipset Motherboard Preview: Formula, Gene, mini-ITX
  8. 0:24:30 MSI X79A-GD65 (8D) LGA 2011 ATX Motherboard Review
  9. 0:26:00 Visual Computing Still Decades from Computational Apex
  10. 0:36:00 This Podcast is brought to you by MSI Computer, and their all new Sandy Bridge Motherboards!
  11. 0:37:00 GDC 12: The bigger big picture, Steam Box to be announced?
  12. 0:40:30 MSI Shows of Next Generation Twin Frozr IV Cards at Cebit
  13. 0:42:30 Peter Pan presents a stylish mouse at CeBIT; Thermaltake's Level 10 M
  14. 0:45:45 Apple Launching Quad Core Graphics A5X Powered iPad 3 With Retina Display
  15. 0:49:00 Hardware / Software Pick of the Week
    1. Ryan: How about a new laptop?  Time for shopping!!  Ultrabook?  IVB maybe?
    2. Jeremy: Ever heard of the brown note?
    3. Josh: They have arrived
    4. Allyn: sleep lulz
  16. 1-888-38-PCPER or podcast@pcper.com
  17. http://pcper.com/podcast   
  18. http://twitter.com/ryanshrout and http://twitter.com/pcper
  19. Closing

Source:

Meet the Z77 motherboard family

Subject: General Tech | March 6, 2012 - 03:16 PM |
Tagged: Z77, mini-itx, maximus v gene, maximus v formula, asus, Sabertooth, p8z77-V deluxe, p8z77 work station

Ryan wasn't the only one to get a preview of the new Intel Express Z77 motherboards, other models have been spotted on the web.  [H]ard|OCP had the same preview of the mATX Maximus V GENE, the SABERTOOTH Z77, mITX P8Z77-I Deluxe, ROG Maximus V Formula and the P8Z77-V Deluxe and a WorkStation version of the Deluxe as well. All are LGA1155 boards with built in video out to take advantage of the next generation of Intel's onboard HD graphics and all but the Gene feature Lucid's Hydra technology.  These are the first examples of this chipset and the boards are something to behold.

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"If you find new motherboards to be worthy of eye candy, then we have a treat for you as ASUS pulled back the curtains on its Z77 model motherboards last week here in Dallas, TX. While there is a whole lot we can't tell you about the next generation Intel processors to occupy the LGA1155 socket, we can run down a very new software feature set."

Here is some more Tech News from around the web:

Tech Talk

 

Source: [H]ard|OCP