Antec Will Support USB 2.0 Motherboards In Eleven Hundred and P280 Cases

Subject: Cases and Cooling | December 7, 2011 - 09:38 AM |
Tagged: p280, gaming, eleven hundred, cases, antec

While it is not often that users upgrade their computer cases without also updating the internals (at least compared to the opposite scenario), Antec still has you covered. If you purchase an Antec P280 or Eleven Hundred gaming case to house your trusty computer components that are only up to USB 2.0 compatible the two USB 3.0 ports are useless as the internal connector will not be compatible. Fret not; however, as the company has listened to user feedback and will now ship users a free adapter so that the front panel USB ports will be compatible with your motherboard (though only up to USB 2.0 speeds, of course).

Antec has been quoted by Maximum PC in stating that “We have hear the feedback you and your readers have given us regarding the USB 3.0 internal connector.”  The further detailed that the specific compatibility issue is with the internal header connection, which would not work with older motherboards.  As of today, users in such a predicament can visit the Antec website’s support page here or call 1-(800)-22ANTEC in the United States to request an adapter. The adapter is free; however, an invoice or other proof of purchase showing you bought one of the affected cases will be required.

Antec P280 USB.jpg

The Antec P280's front panel USB 3.0 ports

I have to say that this is quite good on Antec’s part and it shows that they are really listening to customer feedback. For more on the company, why not check out the latest Inside Perspective interview with Antec?

Source: Maximum PC

So you want to play Batman? Dump the DX11!

Subject: General Tech | November 30, 2011 - 12:51 PM |
Tagged: gaming, batman arkham city, dx11, oops, consolitis

Just in case you were under the impression that Ryan was the only one having issues with DirectX 11 in Batman Arkham City, check out the problems [H]ard|OCP had.  DX11 was essentially unplayable even on multi-GPU systems, with NVIDIA handling the game a little better than AMD.  Using DX 11 in the game enables HBAO and tessellation as well as something new for NVIDIA users called Multi-View Soft Shadows, which do add to the visual quality of the game, if you are willing to live with an average 30fps or so ... with bonus stuttering.  Even better, this is yet another example of a game with its frames capped by default, not quite as bad as Need For Speed The Run but it is still limited to 24-62fps until an .ini file tweak is performed.

Batman-Arkham-City.jpg

"Batman: Arkham City is upon us, and we wanted to give you a preliminary look at how performance is stacking up. We've found some issues running in DX11 that seem to be a detriment to gameplay. DX11 may not be the best option, at this time, for this game, our performance data and feedback explain why."

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Source: [H]ard|OCP

The best console port I've played yet ... at least when Skyrim feels like letting me play

Subject: General Tech | November 23, 2011 - 01:08 PM |
Tagged: gaming, elder scrolls V, skyrim, consolitis

Starting Skyrim for the first time was an interesting experience, obviously you once again start as a prisoner but perhaps one with some serious brain damage as reality seems to move in starts and jerks as if your eyes had a stuttering problem.  Eventually the stuttering cleared up, providing a weekends worth of gaming but by Tuesday the stuttering had returned.  It became clear that it was time to embark on every PC gamers favourite pastime; troubleshooting the game you just bought in the hopes of some day playing it.

Some troubleshooting revealed a serious case of consolitis, the game was not Large Address Aware and limited its self to a maximum serving of 2GB; the adoption of 64bit versions of Windows being very limited by the end of 2011.  Even more damning was what happened when Intel's SpeedStep technology was enabled in the BIOS, the CPU would dip to about 60% of its maximum frequency when you played the game and the process would use under 10% of a core, maybe two if you were lucky.  GPU usage was variable and was sometimes actually sitting at or above 90% usage, but for the most part varied widely. 

A little research showed that SandyBridge owners and those with the previous generation of chips who overclocked above 4GHz were not having many problems, proving that the brute force method of overcoming consolitis could work.   For those who haven't upgraded yet and are waiting for the new year to do so, they must either wait or find a more elegant solution.  To the intarwebs!

INI file tweaks are always popular and Gamefront has a few, the most notable are bMouseAcceleration=0 and iPresentInterval=0 which disable mouse acceleration and V-Sync respectively.  As well, over at Skyrim Nexus is a modified TESV.exe that makes the game LAA and more importantly does not need to replace the main executable in your Skyrim folder so that you won't need to worry about having a modified executable.  As well adding the string +fullproc to the end of the path in your executable should help Skyrim utilize a bit more of your processor.  In the end though, more tweaking is needed for some PC gamers to fully appreciate the latest Elder Scrolls game and more time needs to be spent researching general tweaks as well as Bethesda specific ones.

If you are experiencing no issues with Skyrim, but would like to tweak it to look better then [H]ard|OCP offers a guide for a variety of tweaks and you can grab a variety of game mods from GameFront.

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Now if only BF3 multiplayer would stop locking with a loud noise that sounds suspiciously like a raspberry.

Here is some more Tech News from around the web:

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Need For Speed: The (30fps) Run

Subject: General Tech | November 16, 2011 - 01:13 PM |
Tagged: skyrim, need for speed, gaming, games, elder scrolls V, consolitis

[H]ard|OCP has been having a hard go of it with recent game releases.  CoD Modern Warfare 3 was described as being useless for benchmarking as any mid range GPU can play at maxed settings even at high resolutions.  That discovery came after the Rage incident, when benchmarked it hit 60fps and refused to move, no matter what hardware was thrown at it.  Picture the expression on the reviewers face when they fired up Need For Speed: The Run expecting the Frostbite 2 engine of Battlefield 3 fame to torture their test bench only to find a similar result to Rage, except locked at 30fps.

Thankfully for the continued sanity of their review team, [H] also got hold of the Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim to benchmark.  Benchmarking this game was much more productive, especially in multi-GPU setups and it also revealed a small oddity with the games auto-detection of graphics settings.

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"Need for Speed: The Run was released today, utilizing the Frostbite 2 engine, same as Battlefield 3, it should have some pretty good graphics. However, after we dove into this game this morning, we found that it falls rather flat for a PC game. We'll talk about performance and image quality in this article."

Here is some more Tech News from around the web:

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Source: [H]ard|OCP

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 Sells 6.5 Million Copies In 24 Hours

Subject: General Tech | November 11, 2011 - 09:43 PM |
Tagged: modern warfare 3, gaming, call of duty

The Call of Duty franchise has always sold well, especially on the consoles.  The Modern Warfare series specifically has managed to pull off some impressive sales numbers.  The previous release, Call of Duty: Black Ops managed to make $350 at launch, and the series' latest first person shooter has made a record 400 million dollars in the first 24 hours of its release.

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It seems that despite the lackluster graphics, the issue of the Call of Duty Elite service, and being more of the same game, Call of Duty is still something that gamers are willing to play and shell out top price for.  According to Giant Bomb, the latest Modern Warfare game has more explosions than a Michael Bay movie and the gun-play is still sharp, so there are some positives to be had.  Those positives make the game desirable for a lot of people with Activision selling 6.5 million copies at launch!

What do you guys think of the latest Call of Duty?  Let us know in the comments!

Something's fishy about these Modern Warfare 3 reviews

Subject: General Tech | November 9, 2011 - 01:27 PM |
Tagged: gaming, cod, modern warfare 3

The new CoD incarnation has arrived to every possible platform and is hoping to steal Battlefield 3's thunder.  The series is held in the same esteem as Halo, which can be good or bad depending what type of gamer you are talking to.  The reviews are a perfect example of the complaints heard about the games review industry.  HEXUS rounded up some examples, where an 80 is the lowest score, with comments like "Modern Warfare 3 doesn't do anything new ..." accompaning a score of 90. The general consensus seems to be that if you like Call of Duty, then you already like this game and probably pre-ordered it.

For those expecting something new, [H]ard|OCP has perhaps the most concise review you will see, "We’ve looked into Modern Warefare 3 and I don’t think we should do any articles on it, would be a waste of our time. The game runs at 150 FPS on a GTX 570 at 2560 4X AA and max settings. It is the same old engine we’ve seen in previous Call of Duty games, DX9, low quality textures, created for the xbox and ported to PC, nothing special about it, no need to waste our time writing an article on performance in it."

MW3.png

"After a year of anticipation, and with pre-order numbers toppling those of 2010’s mega-seller Call of Duty: Black Ops, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 has finally launched worldwide.

In conjunction with the release of Activision’s blockbuster first-person shooter, dozens of reviews have hit the web and, by and large, reaction has been extremely positive with many critics praising the game for its signature thrills and entertaining gameplay, though some have expressed a little disappointment at the lack of innovation over previous games."

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Source: Hexus

Figuring out what all those graphics options in Battlefield 3 are for

Subject: General Tech | November 2, 2011 - 03:07 PM |
Tagged: gaming, battlefield 3, tweaks

[H]ard|OCP has been spending a lot of time looking at the same level of the Battlefield 3 single player game, in order to test the performance of 8 GPU setups.  Three AMD cards and three NVIDIA cards were tested, with the top two cards also being tested in multiple GPU setups to show the current upper limits of performance.  Before they started the testing they also put together a nice guide describing the various settings on the graphics page to ensure you understand what you are tweaking before you start.  Gaming at 1920x1200 you can expect to not only get good performance on any of the cards they tested but also have quite a few of the eye candy options turned on.  See the actual results at [H].

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"Battlefield 3 was released last week to throngs of anxious, eager gamers. The PC version shows PC gamers some love with some awesome lights and DirectX 11 effects. In this article, we're looking at Single Player Campaign gameplay performance and image quality with 8 of the best video card solutions on the market right now."

Here is some more Tech News from around the web:

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Source: [H]ard|OCP

Battlefield 3 Sells 5 Million Copies

Subject: General Tech | November 1, 2011 - 04:15 AM |
Tagged: PC, gaming, fps, ea, bf3, battlefield 3

As many readers of the site will know, the PC Perspective guys have been a “bit” interested in EA’s latest multiplayer first person shooter (FPS) Battlefield 3. Ryan for one has been “testing” Battlefield 3 extensively since the game’s release as he admitted on the latest TWICH podcast.

According to EA, the PC Per staff are not the only ones to enjoy the game (despite some game issues; I’m looking at you Origin) as Battlefield 3 has sold a whopping 5 million copies. It seems as though Battlefield 3 has emerged from the battle against stability issues to win the war and be a successful release. Battlefield 3’s sales have also impressed Electronic Arts who claimed the 5 million copies have surpassed their “best expectations.” Unfortunately, they have yet to release the numbers (that I want to see) concerning the percentage of sales of the PC versus the consoles.

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Another bit of positive BF3 news is that almost 99 % of the game stability issues have been fixed. M ore information on the game issues can be found here. Until next time, feel free to hit up the PCPER BF3 platoon and play with some fun people!

Source: Ars Technica

Podcast #176 - X79 Motherboard Leaks, the Arrival of Ultrabooks, Lots of Gaming Talk, Viewer Questions and more!

Subject: General Tech | October 27, 2011 - 06:08 PM |
Tagged: x79, podcast, Intel, gaming, bf3

PC Perspective Podcast #176 - 10/27/2011

Join us this week as we talk about X79 Motherboard Leaks, the Arrival of Ultrabooks, Lots of Gaming Talk, Viewer Questions and more!

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: Josh Walrath, Jeremy Hellstrom, and sometimes Ryan Shrout

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

Program length: 0:54:50

Program Schedule:

  1. 0:00:40 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. 0:01:52 X79's from EVGA, four from Gigabyte and three from ASUS with Ivy Bridge still on time
  6. 0:08:00 Ultrabooks arrive to great indifference
  7. 0:13:01 ASUS N55 Core i7 15.6-in Notebook Review: Can One Laptop Do It All?
  8. 0:18:50 1050W Corsair HX1050 
  9. 0:23:20 This Podcast is brought to you by MSI Computer, and their all new Sandy Bridge Motherboards!
  10. 0:24:30 Bite me console boy
  11. 0:29:00 (Now playing live on) Arkham System Limits
  12. 0:31:48 BF3 system info and Fraggin' Frogs platoon with our own server
  13. 0:34:04 Skyrim system recommendations too ... please note DX9
  14. 0:35:30 Email from Corey about safe GPU temps
  15. 0:38:45 Email from Jon about what he NEEDS to play
  16. 0:44:05 Email from Thane from South Africa
  17. http://pcper.com/podcast   
  18. 0:44:30 Hardware / Software Pick of the Week
      1. Ryan: Seagate FreeAgent GoFlex Upgrade Cable USB 3.0 - STAE104
      2. Jeremy: Ha! Someone else's Ipad 2
      3. Josh: Since BD sorta fell down... Phenom II X6 1090T- watch for the sales
      4. Allyn: Ryan
  19. 1-888-38-PCPER or podcast@pcper.com
  20. http://twitter.com/ryanshrout and http://twitter.com/pcper
  21. Closing

Source:

For those looking at the internet and not Battlefield 3

Subject: General Tech | October 26, 2011 - 01:54 PM |
Tagged: gaming, battlefield 3, tweaks

For those of you who already know if their machine can get the most out of Battlefield 3; you probably aren't reading this post as you are playing right now.  For those of you who have yet succumb to EA's new client and installed BF3 or for those who haven't the time to fully tweak the settings to get the most graphical goodness out of the newest instalment to the Battlefield series, [H]ard|OCP has done quite a bit of work pegging down what performance you can expect.  GTX 580s against HD 6970s in both single and multiple card configurations against themselves as well as against each other in single player and they delve into multiplayer settings as well as commenting on the out of game server browser and what it brings to your non-BF3 experience.

H_BF3_Graphics.jpg

"Battlefield 3 just landed to excited gamers everywhere today. We've got a preview of performance in single player mode and a look at multiplayer mode. If you are going to be playing this game today, or this week, you will want to give this a read for a preview of what performance to expect."

Here is some more Tech News from around the web:

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Source: [H]ard|OCP