CES 2013: Intel Announces Three Future NUC Systems, Coming Later This Year

Subject: Systems | January 10, 2013 - 02:06 AM |
Tagged: CES, nuc, next unit of computing, Intel, htpc, haswell, core i5, celeron 847, ces 2013

Intel released its first Next Unit of Computing system last year, and it seems that the 4 x 4-inch computer was enough of a success that Intel is ready to introduce new models. The Tech Report managed to talk to Intel on the CES show floor, and the x86 chip-maker is planning as many as three new models for release later this year.

Intel is reportedly planning a cheaper model as well as two higher-performance models. The former is a NUC system that switches out the current-generation’s Core i3-3217U processor for a cheaper Celeron 847 chip. While the Core i3-3217U is a dual core part with HyperThreading clocked at 1.8GHz. It is a 22nm, 17W part with 3MB of cache. On the other hand, the Intel Celeron 847 CPU that will allegedly be at the heart of the next NUC is an older 32nm chip with two physical cores, no HyperThreading, 2MB of cache, and a clockspeed of 1.1GHz. It does retain the same 17W TDP, but it is an older and slower part (and cheaper as a result).

This new NUC is said to be available for around $220 with a Thunderbolt port or $190 without Thunderbolt. That makes it as much as $100 cheaper than the current-generation NUC that we reviewed in December 2012.

In addition to the Celeron-powered model, Intel is also ramping up the performance with a Core-i5 powered NUC due in April 2013. There is no word on pricing but it should be available for purchase sometime in April 2013. It will have USB 3.0, triple monitor, and vPro support. The article in question was not clear on whether the Core i5 NUC will keep the Thunderbolt port in addition to USB 3.0 or if it will simply be swapped out. One concern I have is heat as the Core i5 chip will be faster and run hotter than the Core i3-3217U. With the current generation NUC, there were issues of heat that caused the system to hard lock during large file transfers over the network. Granted that particular issue is thought to be caused from heat generated by the NIC and SSD heat causing a component to overheat, but any new/additional heat (like that of a faster CPU) in the same NUC form factor may be problematic. Here’s hoping that Intel has found a way to resolve the overheating issue with the new 2013 models.

Finally, Intel is reportedly also planning to release a Haswell-powered processor in Q4 of this year. IT seems that Intel is preparing a trifecta of NUCs aimed at lower cost, higher performance, and higher efficiency (Haswell) respectively.

Are you excited about the Next Unit of Computing form factor? 

Coverage of CES 2013 is brought to you by AMD!

PC Perspective's CES 2013 coverage is sponsored by AMD.

Follow all of our coverage of the show at http://pcper.com/ces!

Source: Tech Report

CES 2013 Video: Intel Demonstrates Power Efficiency of Clovertrail, Tegra 3 and Krait

Subject: Mobile | January 9, 2013 - 11:18 AM |
Tagged: video, tegra 3, qualcomm, power, nvidia, krait, Intel, clovertrail, ces 2013, CES

One of the more interesting demonstrations from CES thus far has come from Intel in the form of power consumption comparisons between three of the current tablet SoC solutions.  Intel pits the Clovertrail SoC against NVIDIA's Tegra 3 and Qualcomm's Krait in a battle of power efficiency during video playback.  What you'll see is that Intel's test shows the Clovertrail processor able to not only run near but surpass the power efficiency of the ARM-based processors shown.

This is an incredibly powerful collection of tools that Intel has presented and we are hoping to be able to dive into a similar level of detail in the future.  By utilizing direct monitoring of power VRMs on the processor we could even see the power consumption of the CPU cores in comparison to the GPU cores and even against the L2 cache in some instances. 

Intel is on a mission to prove that they are not only competitive today in the tablet SoC market but that they are a leader in the market.  More to follow!!

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PC Perspective's CES 2013 coverage is sponsored by AMD.

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CES 2013: Lenovo Shows Off Clover Trail+ Powered K900 Smartphone

Subject: Mobile | January 9, 2013 - 04:07 AM |
Tagged: CES, smartphone, Lenovo, k900, Intel, clover trail, Android, ces 2013

Lenovo has shown off a new Android smartphone at CES. However, in an interesting twist the new Lenovo K900 is powered by an Intel Atom processor rather than an ARM SoC. The K900 smartphone is constructed of a stainless steel alloy and poly-carbonate material. Lenovo has managed to pack all the hardware in a 6.9mm thin chassis that weights 162 grams. It will come in one of four colors, including gold, silver, and grey in a brushed aluminum pattern and one that has a diamond-plate design on the back cover.

The K900 features a 5.5” IPS touchscreen display protected by Gorilla Glass 2 and with a resolution of 1920x1080. The chassis also hosts a front-facing webcam with an 88-degree field of view and a rear 13MP (F1.8) camera with a dual LED flash.

Lenovo K900_Clover Trail(plus).jpg

The outside is neat, but it is the internal specifications where the Lenovo K900 gets interesting. The smartphone is powered by an Intel Clover Trail+ SoC. While Intel is not yet providing details on the new processor, Engadget speculates that the SoC will be the Intel Atom Z2580, which is a dual core Clover Trail successor running at up to 2GHz. The K900 will also include 2GB of RAM and between 16GB and 64GB of internal storage (plus a microSD card slot). The phone will be running Android along with Lenovo’s Le Phone skin on top (though it can reportedly be disabled).

All in all it looks like a really slick smartphone from the specifications list. Battery life and performance are still unknown, but I’m excited to see benchmarks of this once it is released. Unfortunately, it is not headed to the United States at this time. Instead, the Lenovo K900 will be available in China starting in April of this year. Pricing should be available closer to the product’s release date. Engadget has the full press release along with hands on videos with the hardware.

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Source: Engadget

Doing laps 'round Las Vegas

Subject: General Tech | January 8, 2013 - 12:17 PM |
Tagged: CES, ces 2013, amd, nvidia, Intel, gigabyte

With so much to see at CES 2013 and with the vendors so far away from each other it is impossible to see it all in the limited time available, which is why it helps that there are other sites covering CES who might catch something Ryan and the boys didn't get to.  For instance The Tech Report had a chance to look at Gigabyte's new ultra thin GA-H77TN and GA-B75TN mini-ITX boards which will work in cases much thinner than a conventional board.  They also saw both AMD's upcoming roadmap and a tablet from Vizio using one of AMD's APUs while Intel showed off new Atoms and 7W Ivy Bridge CPUs.  They also weigh in on NVIDIA's new gaming box and the new Zbox.  Keep your eyes peeled on our front page as our coverage will be picking up as Las Vegas begins to come alive for another day of CES.

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"The Consumer Electronics Show is off to a busy start, and we have staffers on the scene in Las Vegas and covering the show remotely. Before the show floor even opened, AMD, Intel, and Nvidia held major press conferences to reveal new products and discuss future plans. We have the goods on AMD's upcoming APUs, Intel's reference design for Haswell convertibles, Nvidia's Tegra 4 SoC, and other goodies from not only those companies, but also Gigabyte, Zotac, Lenovo, Vizio, and the USB 3.0 Promoter Group."

Here is some more Tech News from around the web:

Tech Talk

CES 2013: Intel Announces Atom Z2420 Processor for Smartphones

Subject: General Tech | January 8, 2013 - 11:28 AM |
Tagged: SoC, smartphones, Intel, atom z2420, atom

Intel recently announced a new Atom-series Z2420 processor aimed at low-cost smartphones.   The new System on a Chip will complement the existing Medfield and Clover Trail+ line – which are for higher-performance devices – by being aimed at the low cost phones in developing markets. The Atom Z2420 combines a CPU, L2 cache, GPU, memory controller, cryptography  engine, image signal processor, and fixed function hardware used for video encoding and decoding. The chip is designed to be low power and is manufactured on Intel’s 32nm High-k metal gate process technology. According to Intel, the Co-PoP package measures 12 mm x 12 mm making it suitable for the intended smartphone form factor.

CES2013_Smartphone_Reference_Design.jpg

Specifications include a single core processor with 512KB of L2 cache running at 1.2 GHz that supports Intel’s HyperThreading, Burst, and low power C6 state technologies. With HyperThreading, it can utilize two threads and with Burst, the processor can dynamically scale frequency to balance power usage and CPU load. The Intel GMA GPU uses PowerVR SGX540 graphics cores clocked at 400 Mhz. It is compatible with OpenGL ES 2.0 and OpenVG 1.1. The GPU is rated at 40 MTS peak polygons and a 2000 MPPS peak fill rate. Additionally, the SoC features hardware that can hardware encode/decode 30 FPS 1080p video in H.264, H.263, and MP4. Further, the hardware can hardware accelerate decoding of VC1, WMV9 but it cannot hardware accelerate encoding of those two additional formats. The Atom Z2420 SoC supports dual channel LPDDR2 memory clocked at 400 MHz. The Image Signal Processor (ISP) can support a 1.2MP and 8MP front and rear cameras. The SoC can support 15 FPS burst capture, video image stabilization, and HD video recording.

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Intel has positioned the Atom Z2420 SoC at the Android operating system, and has even built a reference smartphone with the new processor. Acer, Lava, and Safaricom are among the companies lined up to produce future budget smartphones with the new SoC. Unfortunately, Atom Z2420-powered smartphones are not headed to the United States. Intel is sticking to developing markets suchs as India, Latin America, and Africa. Here's hoping next year Intel (finally) feels its mobile (smartphone) hardware is ready to compete with the ARM giants and that it pushes for Atom-powered smartphones in additional countries (including the US). Until then, you can find more information on the current generation Z2420 in the press release (PDF).

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Source: Intel
Author:
Manufacturer: Intel

Ultrabooks 2.0

Intel is a yearly presence at CES and typically have a few interesting things to talk about.  Last year we got to see Will.I.Am on stage telling us all about how the Ultrabook has changed his artistic life.  Oddly enough, things have not changed dramatically for the company.  Ultrabooks have inherited the latest Ivy Bridge processors which were released last Spring.  Medfield is still the primary cell phone processor for Intel.

intc_01.JPG

The first area they covered  is the cellphone market.  Medfield is still the go-to processor and Intel claims that it has better performance and battery life than even the latest Qualcomm products.  Intel is introducing a new reference phone for emerging markets around the world codenamed Lexington.  Based on the Z2420 and the XMM6265 modem, this budget smartphone will be Android based with certain optimizations instituted by Intel in collaboration with Google.

Intel has achieved more wins throughout the next few months.  Acer, Safaricom, and Lava will all be announcing new smart phones based on Intel silicon.  Details of these products will be released later in the quarter.

intc_02.JPG

Medfield will be replaced by Clover Tail+ and then further on with their next gen 22 nm product.

Click to read about more of Intel's CES 2013 coverage.

CES 2013 Podcast Day 2 - NVIDIA Shield, ASUS, Intel, AMD and more!

Subject: General Tech | January 8, 2013 - 04:02 AM |
Tagged: video, tegra 4, shield, raidr express, podcast, nvidia, Intel, ces 2013, CES, ARES II, amd

CES 2013 Podcast Day 2 - 01/07/2013

Ready for even more podcast fun at CES?  Join us as we talk about the second day of the show including more details on the NVIDIA Shield thing, AMD's press conference, Intel's plans for a new Ivy Bridge, ASUS systems and components 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: Ryan Shrout, Josh Walrath, Allyn Malventano and Ken Addison

Program length: 59:32

Be sure to subscribe to the PC Perspective YouTube channel!!

Coverage of CES 2013 is brought to you by AMD!

PC Perspective's CES 2013 coverage is sponsored by AMD.

Follow all of our coverage of the show at http://pcper.com/ces!

GIGABYTE Dual Thunderbolt Motherboards Debut 4K Resolution on Intel Collage Technology at CES 2013

Subject: General Tech | January 7, 2013 - 11:20 PM |
Tagged: thunderbolt, Intel, gigabyte, dual thunderbolt, collage technology, ces 2013, CES, 4k

Intel has found a way to emulate 4k display resolution using its on chip graphics and Gigabyte's Dual Thunderbolt technology.  The display at CES demonstrated Dual Thunderbolt connectors splitting a 4k signal onto four different 1920 x 1200 displays and successfully displaying every pixel of content as if it was on a single 4k monitor, barring bezels of course.  Gigabyte expects to have drivers available for owners of Z77X-UP5 TH or Z77X-UP4 TH motherboards by the end of the month so you will be able to try this for yourself in the very near future.  There is one big difference between this technology and NVIDIA Surround and EyeFinity, since the graphics are provided by the HD4000 GPU you are not going to be able to effectively play the majority games at these resolutions, though it is still nice to see Intel present a solution for HTPCs and similarly purposed systems.

4K_1.png

Las Vegas, NV, January 7th, 2013 – GIGABYTE TECHNOLOGY Co. Ltd., a leading manufacturer of motherboards and graphics cards, today announced support for 4k display resolutions using multiple standard 1080p displays with Intel Collage display technology. The new collage feature is available from an Intel graphics driver update that needs to be individually implemented by motherboard companies before it is available to the user.

Using only the Intel HD4000 Graphics of any 3rd generation Intel Core i5 or i7 processor, GIGABYTE dual Thunderbolt motherboards with the new 4K Collage Graphics driver can power an Ultra HD 4k resolution video stream across four regular displays. Intel Collage display technology is simple to setup, using dual Thunderbolt ports that can be split into a total of four digital streams giving an incredible combined Ultra HD resolution of 3840 x 2400 pixels.

“Our implementation of Intel’s new Collage display technology means that GIGABYTE’s exclusive dual Thunderbolt motherboards are first to power the very latest Ultra HD resolutions across four of today’s standard displays”, commented Henry Kao, Vice President of GIGABYTE Motherboard Business Unit. ”Offering a wealth of possibilities in commercial markets that include digital signage, surveillance, medical and more, we’re also excited to offer PC DIY customers the opportunity to enjoy 4K resolution support with a simple driver update on their existing hardware, and without a VGA card!”

“We are excited about our collage display feature in our Intel platforms with 3rd generation Core i5 and Core i7 processors using Intel HD Graphics”, said Zane Ball, Intel’s General Manager for Desktop platform. “GIGABYTE’s implementation of two Thunderbolt ports enable consumers to connect four monitors via splitters to a single system and experience UltraHD resolution and is a great example of the innovation enabled on these GIGABYTE Z77 motherboards with Thunderbolt.”

Intel Collage Technology
Vertical Collage Mode Setup using a total resolution of 3840*2400

4K_2.png

Monitor1:1920*1200 and vertically a crossed two displays (1920*1200)*2=>3840*2400

Two DisplayPort to Dual-DisplayPort adaptors were used in GIGABYTE’s testing and implementation of the Intel Collage Display feature.

The new graphics driver is expected to be available for download from the GIGABYTE website by the end of January, 2013. You can find more detailed information including a setup guide and component compatibility list on the GIGABYTE website here: http://www.gigabyte.com/MicroSite/323/4k.html. More pictures are available in a photo album on the GIGABYTE Motherboard Tech Column facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/GIGABYTEmotherboards/photos_albums

You can also find a short video introducing GIGABYTE 4K display support and Intel Collage display technology here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pdTMDfh0Hnk

GIGABYTE Motherboard’s Dual Thunderbolt Ports
As the first motherboards to be certified by Intel featuring dual Thunderbolt ports, GIGABYTE’s ‘TH’ models offer up to 10Gbps data transfer speeds from each port; this means you can transfer industry-leading HD graphics and data simultaneously. Each Thunderbolt port complies with the Display Port 1.1 standard (with support for 2K resolutions from each port), and therefore provide a combined throughput of up to 4K for the ultimate in display future-proofing.

For more information about GIGABYTE Thunderbolt motherboards please visit the GIGABYTE Thunderbolt website: http://www.gigabyte.us/microsite/312/images/thunderbolt.html.

GIGABYTE Dual Thunderbolt Models Dual Thunderbolt Ports are featured on the following GIGABYTE motherboard models:

4K_3.png

 

Coverage of CES 2013 is brought to you by AMD!

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Source: Gigabyte

CES 2013: Haswell Ultrabooks Have New Requirements

Subject: General Tech, Processors, Mobile, Shows and Expos | January 7, 2013 - 05:05 PM |
Tagged: CES, ces 2013, haswell, Intel

Oh certification, how I loathe thee.

At the Intel CES 2013 keynote, Intel announced a few new requirements for OEMs to manufacture Haswell-based ultrabooks. Intel clearly wants to push OEMs to utilize several of their more cherished features and as such they will not allow products to be released without these features.

IDF-McAfee.jpg

Threat detected.

A fourth-generation ultrabook must contain the following features:

  • Touch interaction support
  • Intel WiDi support
  • Installed Antivirus and Anti-Malware, Intel-owned McAfee will have an announcement soon.

These three certification requirements lead to two major points of contention with me: non-Windows 8 operating systems as well as Intel potentially strong-arming McAfee into your machine. When Intel requires touch support for Haswell-based ultrabooks, they basically declare that Windows 7 and Linux will not be around.

That requirement could seem minor depending on what Intel McAfee will soon announce after Intel’s announcement that Antivirus and Anti-Malware will be required on ultrabooks. Windows 8 already comes with Microsoft Security Essentials pre-installed and as such Intel might strong-arm vendors into using McAfee. It would not be a stretch to speculate that McAfee will have some deep attachment to the Haswell architecture. Unfortunately we will need to wait until Intel makes their announcement.

Intel also claims that ultrabooks will have touch-based products in the $599 price points very soon.

Coverage of CES 2013 is brought to you by AMD!

PC Perspective's CES 2013 coverage is sponsored by AMD.

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CES 2013 Tidbits: PaperTab Tablet

Subject: General Tech, Systems, Mobile, Shows and Expos | January 7, 2013 - 03:54 PM |
Tagged: CES, ces 2013, PaperTab, Intel, Plastic Logic, Queen's University

It is not just the big companies who have a presence at CES. Sometimes there are smaller products that are worth looking into. For that, we have CES 2013 Tidbits.

human media lab, a center at Queen’s University which I should preface is my Alma Mater, brought their thin and flexible tablet to the trade show. Input is performed by touching its screen, manipulating the flexible chassis, touching tablets together, or arranging them on the desk.

Technically speaking, the tablet is based on a 10.7” high resolution flexible touchscreen developed by Plastic Logic. The logic behind the plastic is controlled by an Intel Core i5 Sandy Bridge processor although no other technical specs have been released.

The tablet was developed as a collaborative effort between human media lab and their partners, Intel and Plastic Logic. The crux of their user interface envisions tablets as a multi-monitor experience and then imagines what forms of interactions are possible as a result.

Coverage of CES 2013 is brought to you by AMD!

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