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Subject: General Tech | February 8, 2013 - 01:42 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: audio, steelseries, Flux Luxury Edition, gaming headset
Apart from the questionable slogan and unique cord colour, the Flux does have quite a few positive features, such as 40mm drivers which have a frequency range of 18 – 28000 Hz. The FluidFIT headband is also well designed, MadShrimps found them comfortable even after long usage while wearing glasses, something not all headsets can claim and while you will get warm under the leather ear cups they are not going to pinch or become uncomfortable. One drawback was the inline microphone, if they did not place it carefully the rubbing of the microphone over clothing is transmitted and can muffle your voice.
"The new Flux Luxury Edition Gaming Headset from SteelSeries was built for mobility in mind, comes with two separate connectivity cables, a carry pouch and interchangeable covers. The Flux is easy to adjust thanks to the FluidFIT headband and produces a high quality sound even in movies or games, even if it is marketed mainly for gaming purposes."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- Razer Chimaera 5.1 Surround sound gaming headset @ Rbmods
- Steelseries Mobile Gaming & Headphone @ eTeknix
- Creative Sound Blaster Z Sound Card @ Kitguru
- a.m.p SP1 Portable Wireless Bluetooth Speaker & Speakerphone Review @ NikKTech
- Jabra Solemate review: super Bluetooth speaker @ Hardware.info
- Novatron Cocktail Audio X10 review: ripping CDs and much more @ Hardware.info
- Logitech UE Boombox review: better than the Mobile Boombox @ Hardware.info
- RHA SA950i Portable Headphones @ Benchmark Reviews
- Sound Blaster Axx SBX20 Bluetooth Portable Speaker @ Tweaktown
- Apple EarPods review: more than good enough @ Hardware.info
Subject: General Tech | February 8, 2013 - 01:17 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: asus, gigabyte
Together the two companies accounted for just over half of the motherboards shipped in 2012, with ASRock and MSI following and leaving ECS trailing. With Intel backing out of the motherboard business this year, the 5 million boards they shipped last year might help prop up ECS' numbers though they will be competing with Asustek, Gigabyte and ASRock who are also licensed to take up Intel's customers. With 80 million boards shipped in total it seems disingenuous to refer to the PC market as dying, as this years numbers are very similar to 2011's total shipments.
"Asustek Computer and Gigabyte Technology shipped 22 million and 19 million motherboards respectively for own-brand sale in the global DIY market in 2012, together occupying 51.3% of the total global shipments of 80 million units, according to Taiwan-based motherboard makers."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- Intel Network Card (82574L) Packet of Death @ ISC
- Seagate squeezes out 4TB desktop monster @ The Register
- Raspberry Pi is right at home inside of a Game Boy @ Hack a Day
- Make Dry Ice at Home with a Fire Extinguisher and a Pillowcase @ MAKE:Blog
- Android dropped to 70 percent smartphone share in Q4 2012 @ The Inquirer
- BlackBerry Q10: This quirky QWERTY will keep loyalists perky @ The Register
- Intel’s Anna Cheng showcases touch screen gaming @ Kitguru
Subject: General Tech | February 7, 2013 - 04:10 PM | Ken Addison
Tagged: podcast, pcper, 3dmark, ice storm, fire strike, titan, evga, 750w, seasonic, never settle, Crysis 3, amd, nvidia, Intel, adata
PC Perspective Podcast #237 - 02/07/2013
Join us this week as we discuss two 750W Power Supply Reviews, the new 3DMark, AMD's Newest Game Bundles and more!
The URL for the podcast is: http://pcper.com/podcast - Share with your friends!
- iTunes - Subscribe to the podcast directly through the 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 Malventano
Program length: 1:10:21
Podcast topics of discussion:
- Week in Reviews:
- 0:28:20 This Podcast is brought to you by MSI!
News items of interest:
- 0:29:45 Win Free Stuff from Seasonic!
- 0:31:30 Newegg saves the shopping cart
- 0:35:10 Never Settle Reloaded Bundle from AMD is pretty awesome
- 0:39:55 Lenovo has record breaking results
- 0:42:25 Fanless Mintbox PC
- 0:43:45 Dell is going private with help from Microsoft
- 0:48:00 Hard Drive Industry may see declines
- 0:56:00 Far Cry 3 with your SSD?
- 1-888-38-PCPER or firstname.lastname@example.org
- http://twitter.com/ryanshrout and http://twitter.com/pcper
Subject: General Tech | February 7, 2013 - 01:34 PM | PCPer Staff
Dell Vostro 270 Core i5 Desktop w/ 6GB RAM for $499.00 with Free Shipping (normally $900 - use coupon code: W9D06J14FX10WM).
Dell UltraSharp U2413 1920 x 1200 24" IPS Monitor (2013 model) for $509.99 with Free Shipping (normally $600 - use coupon code: 6DBNK$ZJLR$L4J).
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Audio-Technica Professional DJ Turntable (ATLP1240USB) for $359.99 with Free Shipping(normally $100 - use coupon code: LovetoSave10).
Subject: General Tech | February 7, 2013 - 12:43 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: carmack, linux, gaming, wine
John Carmack has been stirring the pot recently, from the questionable launch of the PC version of Rage, to poking at consoles remaining capped at 30fps to his disappointment in iD abandoning mobile game development. More recently he has gone on record stating that there is little to no money to be made developing games for Linux. His company has tried, Quake Arena and Quake Live both proved to be difficult to create and to have limited adoption as a test for the amount of possible sales. This does not mean he has given up on Linux users completely, instead as he told The Inquirer he sees a different solution to the difficulties involved in designing games for Linux; improve WINE. With a faster and more stable Windows (not an) Emulator for Linux iD and other companies wouldn't have to worry about parallel development, it would come closer to compile once and run anywhere. Even better for game developers, there is already a dedicated group of programmers improving WINE so they would not lose man-hours better spent designing games. You can also catch his comments about Steam appearing on Linux.
"LEGENDARY GAMES DEVELOPER John Carmack has questioned the business model of porting Windows games to Linux, saying that using Windows emulation might be a better approach."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- Microsoft involvement in Dell privatization may not benefit the PC vendor, says Acer founder @ DigiTimes
- One in three PCs are infected with malware @ The Inquirer
- Rosewill RPLC-500KIT Powerline Ethernet Adapter Review @ Hi Tech Legion
- Bug kills Intel gig-E controllers @ The Register
- IBM Power7+ Rollout Includes New Linux Servers, Apps @ Linux.com
- LibreOffice 4 Released @ Slashdot
- Antivirus update broke our interwebs, howl Win XP users @ The Register
- Windows Phone 8 hasn't slowed Microsoft's mobile freefall @ The Register
Subject: General Tech | February 6, 2013 - 05:38 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: blackberry, blackberry z10, nokia, Lumia 920, qualcomm, snapdragon s4
The hardware found in the new Blackberry Z10 and Nokia's Lumia 920 are almost exactly the same, with both based off of the dual core Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 at 1.5GHz. That makes this video from The Inquirer all about the performance of the operating system and the user interface. They pit these two smartphones against each other in numerous head to head competitions, ranging from a boot time test that shows you should never turn off your Z10 to email testing which Blackberry was smart enough to focus on more than the other features. Head on over and check out the 6 minute competition.
"BOTH BLACKBERRY AND MICROSOFT are fighting to take the number three spot in the UK smartphone market with their respective flagship devices, the Blackberry Z10 and the Nokia Lumia 920."
Here are some more Mobile articles from around the web:
- BlackBerry Z10 @ Techspot
- Samsung ATIV Odyssey Smartphone Review @ Legit Reviews
- Samsung Galaxy S3 Smartphone Review @ Benchmark Reviews
- Three entry-level Samsung Galaxy smartphones reviewed: Mini 2, Pocket and Y @ Hardware.info
- Acer Iconia Tab W510-1422 Review @ TechReviewSource
- Samsung Galaxy Note 2 @ LanOC Reviews
- Arctic USB Charger PRO 4 Rev.2 @ Benchmark Reviews
- Microsoft Surface Pro @ AnandTech
- Toshiba Satellite P875-31P @ The Inquirer
- Samsung Series 7 Gamer (NP700G7C-S01) Gaming Notebook Review @ Custom PC Review
- HP Spectre XT TouchSmart Ultrabook 15t-4000 Review @ TechReviewSource
- Lenovo Thinkpad Twist review: flexible Thinkpad @ Hardware.info
- ASUS VivoBook X202E 11.6-inch Notebook Review @ Techgage
- Samsung Ativ Smart PC 500T @ The Inquirer
- Samsung Series 5 UltraTouch NP540U3C-A01UB Review @ TechReviewSource
- Dell XPS 13 (2013) Review @ TechReviewSource
- EUROCOM Monster Gaming Notebook Review @ Hardware Canucks
Subject: General Tech | February 6, 2013 - 04:49 PM | PCPer Staff
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Dell Optiplex 7010 Core i7 Quad-core Mini Tower for $632.00 (normally $900 - use coupon code: 88KSR26X$74PFT).
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SanDisk Ultra Plus 256GB Laptop SSD (SDSSDHP-256G-G25) for $169.99 with Free Shipping (normally $130 - use coupon code: EMCYTZT2901).
Subject: General Tech | February 6, 2013 - 03:46 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: gaming, surreal, antichamber
Antichamber is hard to describe, simply defining it as Portal-like misses just how strange the physics are in this game. Switching to a walk from your normal movement speed might just allow you to walk up invisible stairs which are intangible otherwise is certainly different than Portal as are the parts where looking through an object or simply looking at an object can change your position or a portion of the mazes position. Progress is mostly kept track of through the various pictures you click which will reveal clues which might or might not be useful. On the other hand the 'gun' you get which places and removes cubes is a little like Portal. Confused? Read on at Rock, Paper, SHOTGUN and be prepared to be even more baffled and head to Steam to pick it up.
"Truth be told, Antichamber felt nearly finished the first time I ever laid hands on it. That was nearly a year ago. But creator Alexander Bruce insisted that – even after multiple years of near-obsessive fine-tuning – his non-Euclidean, Escher-ish, other impressive words that start with E puzzler needed more. So now here we are. But is it actually, truly finished? And was it worth the interminable, largely radio silent wait? Here’s wot I think."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- Tomorrowind’s World: Skyrim – Dragonborn Out on PC @ Rock, Paper, SHOTGUN
- Age Of Wonders III/3/three/iii/³ Announced @ Rock, Paper, SHOTGUN
- Gunblitz @ LanOC Reviews
- Nvidia demos Project SHIELD streaming Borderlands 2 from PC @ HEXUS
- Worlds Collide: Valve And JJ Abrams Working On Movie @ Rock, Paper, SHOTGUN
- Saints Row III PC @ eTeknix
- Ni no Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch PlayStation 3 @ Tweaktown
Subject: General Tech | February 6, 2013 - 01:35 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: vector, ssd, ocz, giveaway, far cry 3
If you purchase a 256GB or 512GB OCZ Vector Series drive before July 14th of 2013 you will get a free downloadable copy of Far Cry 3, to a maximum of two copies. Allyn was more than impressed with this drive, finishing off his review with the statement that "The OCZ Vector astonished me with its throughput, sheer IOPS performance, and low latency", with the only negative comment involving the drives inability to do household chores. They are not the least expensive drives on the market but they are some of the fastest and they come with a 5 year warranty as well.
Subject: General Tech | February 6, 2013 - 01:20 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: fud, ocz, income, doom
OCZ is hours away from being delisted from the stock exchange and it will be very difficult for them to make the deadline as they have to submit a plan detailing how they will provide an accurate accounting of their quarterly profits by Feb 28th. This is a bit of a problem considering that they do not seem to have submitted an accurate profit statement since Q1 of 2012 at the most recent. In Q2 Ryan Petersen originally forecasted profits between $110-120m but after Petersen left and Ralph Schmitt took over those predicted profits dropped drastically to somewhere around $65-$85m, not accurate enough for Wells Fargo to consider it a proper financial statement. From what The Register has learned, OCZ cannot estimate Q2 or Q3 earnings at this time, nor are they quite sure what the economic impact incentive programme liabilities and inventory run-down charges will have. Things do not look good.
We heard from OCZ that they have indeed been working hard with Crowe Horwath LLP on getting their preliminary results for 2012 and Q1 of 2013 ready for the market. It was also brought to our attention that the Nasdaq is permitted to grant an extension of up to 180 days, which would be April 8th, for the Company to regain compliance with the SEC and other institutions. This lessens the danger that OCZ faces and while the stock has tumbled a bit over the past few months as of this update they are at $2.09/share, flat for the days trading, traders are exhibiting confidence in the company. According to Seeking Alpha last night it was announced that "The Company estimates that its quarterly revenue will range between $65 million to $85 million in each quarter for the second and third fiscal quarters of 2013." That is still a wide variance but you should not count OCZ out quite yet. We will continue to keep an eye on the market and OCZ's responses.
"Stifel Nicolaus analyst Aaron Rakers noted there was no announcement of a filing of the required Nasdaq update plan today. Unless that is handed in on time, OCZ is out of Nasdaq and, as a result, getting bank credit will be much more difficult. Wells Fargo could wave goodbye and consign OCZ to the scrap heap in a forced asset sale. This is about as bad as it gets, but OCZ's survival is still possible."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- Making the most of your move to Office 365 @ TechwareLabs
- Crooks, think your Trojan looks legit? This one has a DIGITAL CERTIFICATE @ The Register
- Inside the Macintosh SE @ Hardware Secrets
- Win Biostar Hi-Fi Mainboards with KitGuru
- Logitech Joint Giveaway @ Nikktech
Subject: General Tech | February 6, 2013 - 09:14 AM | Tim Verry
Tagged: storage, isuppli, Hard Drive
Analytics firm IHS recently released its iSuppli Storage Space Market Brief. According to the report, 2013 does not look good for hard drive manufacturers who may see up to a 12% decline in revenues. In 2012 the hard drive industry brought in $37.1 billion, but IHS estimates only $32.7 billion in 2013. Further, revenue in 2014 is estimated at a mere $32 billion.
In response to new hard drive technologies and pressure from solid state drives, IHS predicts hard drive selling prices will fall 7%. Thanks to this price erosion, the report suggests that hard drive manufacturers across the board will experience declines in gross and operating profit margins. The hard drive industry will have to contend with cheaper solid state drives as well as competition within the industry. Seagate and Western Digital will continue to battle it out for market dominance with new technologies and a continued price war that will see margins becoming thinner than ever as $/GB metrics continue to fall rapidly.
Reportedly, the hard drive makers will also have to contend with smartphones and tablets (that use solid state storage) making inroads into the PC market. Sales of traditional PCs are said to be somewhat cannibalized by mobile devices, and those reduced sales will affect the hard drive component manufacturers negatively.
On the other hand, it is not all bad news for the HDD makers. Hard drives still have per-drive capacity and $/GB on their side. Hard drives may be losing ground to SSDs, but for cheap consumer computers and large storage arrays used in the enterprise space hard drives are still the way to go. Consumer PC sales may no longer be growing rapidly, but big data is still a growing market so that will help the hard drive market.
All in all, 2013 will be beneficial for consumers as they will be getting cheaper and more-dense hard drives. This year is not looking good for the hard drive manufacturers, however.
Image of hard disk drive courtesy Walknboston via Flickr Creative Commons.
Subject: General Tech | February 6, 2013 - 05:53 AM | Tim Verry
Tagged: wall street, OEM, microsoft, dell
Dell, ranked third in terms of global market share, has announced that it is entertaining a buyout offer by CEO and founder Michael Dell and his associates. The $24.4 billion deal will see Dell leave wall street and return to a privately held company. Michael Dell has managed to secure funding for the buyout offer, which amounts to $13.65 per share.
Funding sources for the buyout offer includes:
- Cash and equity from Michael Dell and Dell cash on hand.
- Cash from Silver Lake
- Cash from MSD Capital
- A $2 billion loan from Microsoft
- A rollover of existing debt
New debt financing compromised of
- Bank of America Merril Lynch
- Credit Suisse
- RBC Capital Markets
The deal will leave Dell with $15 billion of new debt, but it will also allow them to go in new directions and focus on long term goals. Dell will no longer be forced to focus on short term growth and profitability over long term goals to keep stockholders/wall street content. It is an interesting move on Dell's part because traditionally companies do the opposite: transition from being privately to publicly held corporations. Michael Dell is at the forefront of the buyout offer and should it go through, Dell will remain the CEO of the now-private company. The deal is expected to close by the end of the company's second fiscal quarter (July 2013)-- though the board does have 45 days to solicit alternative offers.
According to the New York Times, Michael Dell wrote the following memo to employees.
“Dell’s transformation is well under way, but we recognize it will still take more time, investment and patience. I believe that we are better served with partners who will provide long-term support to help Dell innovate and accelerate the company’s transformation strategy.”
It is an interesting move, and hopefully Dell will be able to turn its luck around, and gain back its lost market share. Many enthusiasts are wondering whether or not the $2 billion loan from Microsoft suggests the software giant has a special interest in the OEM--and whether that means Dell will become some kind of premium partner for Windows and/or Windows Phone devices.
That is certainly one option, but it is not the only one. While I think Dell will continue to produce Windows-powered computers, there is also the growing popularity of Linux to consider. Dell could continue to produce Windows PCs without going private, but pursuing Linux in a big way might be one reason to do so. Dell has traditionally been supportive of the open source Linux operating system with initiatives like Project Sputnik. While it would not happen overnight and would require quite the effort, Dell could do for Linux what Apple has done for Unix with OS X.
It could focus on a premium line of computers running a Linux-based operating system along with quality customer support. It may be an unlikely option compared to the suggestions of a Dell and Microsoft premium partnership, but it is not completely without merit.
Why do you think Michael Dell is transitioning Dell to a privately-held company? Will Dell cozy up to Microsoft for the next Surface, is there some other grand plan in the works, or is the answer more simple?
Subject: Editorial, General Tech | February 5, 2013 - 05:44 PM | Scott Michaud
Tagged: Psychonauts, Notch, Tim Schafer
You cannot knock Tim Schafer: he abides by “Shut up and take my money”.
Last year we reported on the public negotiations between the heads of Mojang and Double Fine for a potential sequel to Psychonauts. The game was supposed to take “a couple” of million to make, which was later clarified to at least $13 million USD. This prompted the famous response from Notch, “Yeah, I can do that.”
Some time later, the deal fell by the wayside.
A storm never came that day, barely a ripple brushed against his wooden canoe.
Recently Notch was on Reddit and commented about the status of the sequel. The final budget ended up being around $18 million USD which ended up being beyond what Notch felt comfortable investing in. It was not for a lack of funds, however. Markus stated that he just did not have the time to be involved in an $18 million dollar deal.
The biggest point I would like to make is how little damage was caused by discussing this out in the open: the game fell through, at least for the moment, and no effigies were burnt. We might be approaching a time and an industry where these sorts of discussions will not need to be performed in strict secrecy.
Congratulations to Markus Persson and Tim Schafer for being brave or eccentric enough to trust the internet. We are sorry it didn't work out, but wish you luck in the future.
Subject: Editorial, General Tech, Systems, Mobile | February 5, 2013 - 05:10 PM | Scott Michaud
Dell, dude, you're getting a Dell!
So it is official that Dell is going private. Michael Dell, CEO, as well as: Silver Lake, MSD Capital, several banks, and Dell itself will buy back stocks from investors 25% above the January 11th trading price. The whole deal would be worth $24.4 billion USD.
Going private allows the company to make big shifts in their business without answering to investors on a quarterly basis. We can see how being a publicly traded company seems to hinder businesses after they grow beyond what a cash infusion can assist. Even Apple finds it necessary to keep an absolutely gigantic pile of cash to play with, only recently paying dividends to investors.
Also contributing to the buyback, as heavily reported, is a $2 billion USD loan from Microsoft. While it sounds like a lot in isolation, it is only just over 8% of the whole deal. All you really can pull is that it seems like Microsoft supports Dell in their decision and is putting their money where their intentions are.
Subject: General Tech | February 5, 2013 - 02:34 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: input, zowie, AM Mouse, ambidextrous, gaming mouse
As you can see from the picture the Zowie AM gaming mouse has a simple design, one which allows it to be used by righties and lefties without an issue. There is a thumb button located on both sides of the mouse, so even with the simple design you don't lose out on the extra functionality you expect from a gaming mouse. DPI and USB report rates are both modifiable but without bundled software you won't get the same level of control as with other mice. Drop by Red & Blackness Mods for a closer look.
"We have not reviewed so much from Zowie but today we take a look at the Zowie AM gaming mouse. This reminds me of the Steelseries Sensei and can be used by both left and right handed people since it has no special shapes at all. Enough talk, lets get on with this review!"
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- Logitech G600 MMO Gaming Mouse Review @ Madshrimps
- CM Storm QuickFire TK Mechanical Keyboard Review @ Neoseeker
- Thermaltake Level 10M Gaming Mouse Review @ Hi Tech Legion
- CM Storm Sentinel Advance II Mouse Review @ XtremeComputing
- Cooler Master Storm Power-RX Mouse Surface and Skorpion Bungee Review @ Pro-Clockers
- LEETGION El'Druin Gaming Mouse Review @ Madshrimps
- Thermaltake Level 10 Mouse Review @ OCC
- Thermaltake Level 10M Gaming Mouse @ Benchmark Reviews
- Tt eSPORTS Level 10M Gaming Mouse Review @ NikKTech
- Zowie G-CM Mouse Mat @ eTeknix
- Func Surface 1030 XL Mouse Pad @ eTeknix
- Logitech G710+ Mechanical Gaming Keyboard Review @ Legit Reviews
Subject: General Tech | February 5, 2013 - 02:16 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: Sea Islands, radeon, GCN, amd, 8970, oland, hd 8000, RadeonSI, gallium, mesa
Phoronix has good news for Linux users about the "RadeonSI" Gallium3D driver which AMD has slowly been developing for the HD 7000 series, MESA has announced the driver is being developed for the HD 8000 series. The project commit is a candidate for MESA 9.1 and the Linux 3.9 kernel which could lead to some issues as most Linux flavours are using 3.8 or earlier but should bode well for the future. This hopefully signals a greater commitment to OpenCL and other projects AMD has started but not managed to fully develop. We also have quite a few PCI IDs from the commit statement, 0x6600, 0x6601, 0x6602, 0x6603, 0x6606, 0x6607, 0x6610, 0x6611, 0x6613, 0x6620, 0x6621, 0x6623, and 0x6631 are all listed.
"While AMD has yet to officially introduce their Radeon HD 8000 series, published today was the initial open-source Linux graphics driver support for handling the Radeon HD 8800 "Oland" graphics cards."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- Dell agrees to $24.4bn buyout @ The Inquirer
- 3DMark for Windows Launches; We Test It with Various Laptops @ AnandTech
- New 3DMark Benchmark Highlights and First GPU Results @ Legit Reviews
- The next-gen 3DMark is here, we take it for a quick spin around the block @ Tweaktown
- BlackBerry 10: Good news, there's still time to fix this disaster @ The Register
- Blackberry Steelseries Free Bluetooth gamepad video demo @ The Inquirer
- BANG and the server's gone: Man gets 8 months for destroying work computers @ The Register
Subject: General Tech | February 5, 2013 - 12:26 PM | PCPer Staff
Kindle Fire HD 16GB 8.9" 1920x1200 Tablet (w/Special Offers) for $269.00 with free shipping (normally $300 - use coupon code: FIRELOVE).
Toshiba Satellite C850 15.6" Core i3 Laptop for $349.99 (normally $500 - use coupon code: LVC850S).
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Viewsonic PJD5123 DLP 3D Projector for $319.99 with Free Shipping (normally $500).
Sony Xperia Ion 4G LTE Smartphone [AT&T] for $.99 plus free shipping (normally $100).
GymForm AbStorm Kit for $79.00 plus free shipping (normally $200).
K2 Shadow 9 29er Mountain Bike for $349.99 (normally $650).
Subject: General Tech | February 5, 2013 - 07:08 AM | Tim Verry
Tagged: pavilion 14, hp, google, Chromebook
HP recently launched the Pavilion 14 Chromebok, which is a notebook running Google’s Chrome OS operating system and suite of web applications. The Pavilion 14 Chromebook is a 14” laptop measuring 0.83-inches thick and weighing 3.96 pounds.
The new Chromebook is based on one of HP’s existing Windows laptops–the Sleekbook 14-b010us. It features a 14” screen with a resolution of 1366x768, full qwerty keyboard and track pad, and a webcam.
External IO includes:
- 3 x USB 2.0
- 1 x HDMI
- 1 x Ethernet (10/100)
- 1 x Card reader
- 1 x Headphone jack
The system is powered by a dual core Intel Celeron 847 clocked at 1.1 GHz, 2GB of RAM, and a 16GB solid state drive (SSD). Dual-band 802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 3.0 radios are included, but unlike other Chromebooks there is no cellular connectivity out of the box. Further, Google is providing 100GB of Google Drive cloud storage for free (for two years). HP estimates system battery life at 4.25 hours.
The Pavilion 14 Chromebook is available now on HP’s website for $329.99. That makes it one of the most expensive Chromebooks on the market. Chrome OS has come a long way, and even includes a minimal desktop. The hardware looks nice, but I would have liked to see a higher resolution display along with cellular modem for the price, however. It will be interesting to see how well the larger 14" form factor sells.
Subject: General Tech | February 5, 2013 - 05:32 AM | Tim Verry
Tagged: Raspberry Pi, model a, cheap computer, arm
The Raspberry Pi Foundation has announced that its Model A computer is (finally) available for purchase in Europe. The Raspberry Pi Model A is the small computer that the foundation originally pitched as the low-cost $25 PC. The other computer is the Model B, which has been available for some time now. The Model A is a stripped down version of the Model B covered previously. It features a single USB port, and half of the RAM of the latest Model B at 256MB. Further, there is no Ethernet jack on the model B, so users wanting Internet access will have to grab a USB NIC.
The Model A PC. Notice the lack of Ethernet support.
The Model A is powered by the same Broadcom BCM2835 chipset as the Model B. That includes an ARM1176JZFS processor clocked at 700MHz and a Videocore 4 GPU. The GPU is capable of hardware accelerating H.264 video decodes at up to 1080p30 and 40Mbps video. The GPU is rated at 24 GLOPS general compute performance, and it supports the OpenGL ES2.0 and OpenVG libraries.
Interestingly, the Model A was originally planned to have a mere 128MB of RAM, but with the update of the Model B to 512MB RAM, the Raspberry Pi Foundation was also able to include twice the RAM in the Model A while maintaining the $25 price point.
The underside of the Raspberry Pi Model A.
The Model A reportedly uses as much as a third of the power as the Model B, which makes it ideal for projects that will run off of battery or renewable energy sources--like solar. The Raspberry Pi Foundation suggests that the Model A will be useful in robotics and networking projects, for example.
The Model A Raspberry Pi PC is currently available in Europe, but US availability is coming soon. It will cost $25, but you will also need at least an SD card for the operating system and a DC power source (like a cell phone wall charger with male micro USB connector). The promised $25 PC is finally here (at least for those on the other side of the pond). What will you be using it for?
Read more about the Raspberry Pi at PC Perspective.
Subject: General Tech, Graphics Cards, Motherboards | February 4, 2013 - 06:36 PM | Scott Michaud
Tagged: msi, 3dmark
Do you have a beastly system with MSI parts, intense overclocking knowledge, and a desire for even more high-end parts? In honor of the new 3DMark's release, the motherboard and graphics card manufacturer is letting users of their parts enter in a contest for the highest 3DMark scores.
In a partnership with the benchmarking leaderboard site, HWBot, MSI wants to see top scores for the Fire Strike test on the newly released 3DMark. The contest will run until March 3rd for entries looking to post top ranks. Beyond that, anyone with an MSI Z77 motherboard who enters before February 10th will be entered in a “Lucky Draw” for the MSI Z77A-GD55 Motherboard.
Winners of the leader contest will receive the MSI R7970 Lightning Boost Edition card for first place and an MSI Z77A-GD80 for second place. Note that we are not affiliated with this contest, we just think that our readers might like to know.