Podcast #151 - HD 6670 and 6570, Seagate and Samsung deal, 20nm Flash memory, Viewer questions and more!

Subject: Editorial, General Tech | April 21, 2011 - 03:08 PM |
Tagged: Seagate, Samsung, podcast, HD6670, HD6570

PC Perspective Podcast #151 - 4/21/2011

This week we talk about AMD's new HD 6670 and 6570, the Seagate and Samsung deal, 20nm Flash memory, 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
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  • MP3 - Direct download link to the MP3 file

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

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

Program length: 1:12:48

Program Schedule:

Source:

Just Delivered: Rii Mini wireless USB HTPC Remote

Subject: General Tech, Systems | April 21, 2011 - 02:56 PM |
Tagged: remote, htpc

Just Delivered is a new section of PC Perspective where we share some of the goodies that pass through our labs that may or may not see a review, but are pretty cool none the less.

Every once in a while I get a wild desire to buy some junk from Amazon.  Actually, it's more like every day.  This time though, the item that I got in actually seems to be somewhat reasonable in terms of price, function and quality.  

One of the biggest headaches for HTPC (home theater PC) users is that controlling the PC remotely with any kind of precision is hard to do.  There are TONS of remotes and wireless keyboard/mouse combinations on the market but I happened to come across one called the "Rii Mini" on Amazon that only cost $35 and seemed to be a perfect, yet simple solution.

rii1.jpg

Yes, it is a cheap Chinese knock-off on the Logitech coloring and branding, but that isn't our problem.  The unit combines a keyboard, touchpad and laser pointer (what??) in a small form factor with some impressive features that have made it useful in my limited testing time thus far.

More photos and details after the break!

16 core Cortex A15s coming soon?

Subject: General Tech | April 21, 2011 - 12:16 PM |
Tagged: servers, cortex, arm

We have been hearing of a little something called Project Denver that ARM has been working on, which they claim will have them selling chips to the server market.  The new Cortex A15 will be a 32bit chip with 40bit physical addressing, and multiple cores capable of reaching 2.5GHz, all while using the same amount of power as the previous Cortex A9 generation.  Maybe Intel and AMD do have something to worry about.  Drop by The Register for more.

Elreg_arm_cortex_a15.jpg

"ARM Holdings' high-performance, low-power Cortex-A15 processor design will appear in products in late 2012 or early 2013, when it will begin to muscle in on territory long dominated by Intel's x86 architecture."

Here is some more Tech News from around the web:

Tech Talk

Source: The Register

PCPer v4.0 Giveaway: Thermaltake Challenger Ultimate Gaming Keyboard

Subject: Editorial, General Tech | April 20, 2011 - 05:43 PM |
Tagged: thermaltake, giveaway, contest

As you can no doubt tell, PC Perspective got a HUGE and much needed facelift over the weekend to what we are internally calling "PC Perspective v4.0".  I know there are still some kinks to work out and we are actively addressing any feedback from our readers in this comment thread.  

But we want to celebrate the launch of the new site in style!!  Some of our site sponsors have very generously offered up some prizes for us to give out throughout the coming days...

The third set of prizes is a pair of Thermaltake esports Challenger Ultimate Gaming Keyboard!

ttakekeyboard.jpg

These babies have just about everything you want on a keyboard and probably more.  Backlight? Check.  On-board audio jacks and USB ports?  Yup.  A FAN??? Yessir.

What do you have to do to win this wonderful piece of hardware?

Couldn't be easier: post a comment in this post thanking Thermaltake for its sponsorship of PC Perspective as well as what you want to see most on your next keyboard.  I want a drink holder. 

You should probably have a registered account or at least be sure you include your email address in the appropriate field so we can contact you!

We will pick the winners tomorrow and move on to the next hardware that finds its way to PC Perspective offices.  Good luck and thanks for reading!!

Source: Thermaltake

Just Delivered: 24GB (6 x 4GB) of Corsair DDR-1333 Memory

Subject: General Tech, Memory | April 20, 2011 - 01:31 PM |
Tagged: delivered, corsair

Just Delivered is a new section of PC Perspective where we share some of the goodies that pass through our labs that may or may not see a review, but are pretty cool none the less.  

When building a video editing rig, it is important to have some incredibly powerful specifications like faster processors, lots of cores, speedy storage and of course, lots and lots of memory.

24gbcorsair.jpg

To address this issue and to help us bring more high quality video content readers faster, we just received a set of six 4GB DDR3-1333 modules for a total of 24GB of memory.  Our processor layout includes a pair of quad-core Xeon processors with HyperThreading (thus, 16 threads) with each CPU getting 12GB all their own.  

Source: Corsair

Time for a second Portal meme to spread

Subject: General Tech | April 20, 2011 - 12:27 PM |
Tagged: Portal 2

You might have heard that a popular game had a new version released over Steam and in stores.  Portal 2 has been released, though the time and effort those who picked up the Potato Sack were not rewarded with much more than a 2 hour jumpstart in North America though the Brits who participated got it 2 days earlier.  Hardware Canucks have had it long enough to cover both the single and muliplayer facets, so if you haven't had a chance to play it head over for a look.

HC_coop2-thumb.jpg

The timer is a lie!

"With the original Portal selling millions of copies, it was only natural that a sequel would be in the cards. Valve has now finally released this eagerly anticipated title and from all indications, it is even more addicting than the first."

Here is some more Tech News from around the web:

Gaming

Visiting Global Foundries Fab 8

Subject: General Tech | April 20, 2011 - 12:09 PM |
Tagged: video, global foundries, foundry, fab 8

[H]ard|OCP were gifted with a chance to visit Global Foundries Fab 8 facility which is being built in central New York state.  [H] took along a video camera to let you see some of the facilities as they stand now.  Not only is this impressive because of the size of the Fab, it is also one of the biggest construction jobs, period.

H_GloFoVisit.jpg

"GLOBALFOUNDRIES was kind enough to let HardOCP into its new Fab 8 facility in Malta, New York. While far from finished, this 28/20nm plant will be ramping to full production in 2012. Check out the video to understand the sheer scale of the largest construction project currently underway in the United States."

Here is some more Tech News from around the web:

Tech Talk

Source: [H]ard|OCP

PCPer v4.0 Giveaway: A Pair of Corsair Hydro H60 Water Coolers!

Subject: General Tech | April 19, 2011 - 02:50 PM |
Tagged: hydro, h60, giveaway, corsair, contest

As you can no doubt tell, PC Perspective got a HUGE and much needed facelift over the weekend to what we are internally calling "PC Perspective v4.0".  I know there are still some kinks to work out and we are actively addressing any feedback from our readers in this comment thread.  

But we want to celebrate the launch of the new site in style!!  Some of our site sponsors have very generously offered up some prizes for us to give out throughout the coming days...

The second prize is in fact PRIZES since Corsair is going to be handing out a Hydro H60 CPU water cooler to TWO lucky PC Perspective readers!

corsairh60.png

What do you have to do to win this wonderful piece of hardware?

Couldn't be easier: post a comment in this post thanking Corsair for its sponsorship of PC Perspective and maybe include a thought or two on the new site design (compliments, constructive criticism, hate filled monologues, whatever).  You should probably have a registered account or at least be sure you include your email address in the appropriate field so we can contact you!

We will pick the winners tomorrow and move on to the next hardware that finds its way to PC Perspective offices.  Good luck and thanks for reading!!

Source: Corsair

Seagate and Samsung, the defragmentation of the storage market continues

Subject: General Tech | April 19, 2011 - 11:51 AM |
Tagged: Seagate, Samsung, sale, partnership, hdd, 1 billion

 

While it is not a true merger or sale, it seems that the operations side of Samsung's HDD branch is being pruned off and sold to Seagate for over $1billion of cash and shares.  The reports inidicate this will be more of a partnership, with Samsung continuing to develop technologies for HDD and retaining full ownership of its flash based storage assets.  Drop by The Tech Report for more.

samsung-seagate-logo.jpg

"Seagate and Samsung have announced a "broad strategic alignment," as part of which Seagate will take over Samsung's hard-drive operations in exchange for a cool $1.375 billion (paid half in cash, half in stock). The deal also involves a NAND flash memory supply agreement as well as "expanded cooperation" on enterprise storage."

Here is some more Tech News from around the web:

Tech Talk

Wireless touch mouse roundup

Subject: General Tech | April 18, 2011 - 06:10 PM |
Tagged: input, mouse, keyboard, mouse pad, touch mouse, wireless, roundup

The touch mouse is a species very different from gaming mice, eschewing total size as well as the number of buttons to provide a very mobile but still functional mouse.  The main solution that these mice use is to incorporate the functionality of a touch pad, like those found on laptops, directly onto the mouse.  TechSpot grabbed three of the main contenders, Microsoft’s Arc Touch, Mad Catz's Eclipse, and SpeedLink’s Cue Wireless Multitouch to see how well these mice do the job.

touch-mouse-review.jpg

"When it comes to input peripherals and more specifically pointing devices, the options available to the end user are near limitless. Our most recent mouse reviews and roundups have had a heavy focus on gamers and enthusiasts, but it’s important to remember that not everyone falls into these particular demographics.

Today we'll be looking at three mice that aren’t necessarily as high-end or feature-packed as some we have previously tested. These wireless mice are smaller and simpler in what they entail, yet they all feature one distinct characteristic – touch sensitivity."

Here is some more Tech News from around the web:

Tech Talk

Source: TechSpot

Bottles are good, bottlenecks are bad. How well does your GPU and CPU match up?

Subject: General Tech | April 18, 2011 - 12:08 PM |
Tagged: overclocking, LN2, gpus, cpu, bottleneck

If you have heard the term "bottleneck" when you have been describing your dream PC on the forums and wonder why people are referring to your CPU as the weak link when your GPU is so powerful that the CPU shouldn't have to do anything?  Unfortunately it is not that simple and a powerful GPU can be held back by a CPU that can't keep up with it.  Drop by Funky Kit for a look at bottlenecking by a serious overclocker who is quite used to overpowering CPUs.

bottleneck.jpg

"In the DIY computer world a lot of people are concerned about a video card (GPU) "bottlenecking" on a given CPU, or a given CPU bottlenecking a GPU. In this article I will explain what it is that they are talking about, as well as discussing whether or not it's worth being worried about. First off is the answer to the question "What is this bottlenecking you speak of?!"

Here is some more Tech News from around the web:

Tech Talk

Source: Funky Kit

PCPer v4.0 Giveaway: OCZ Technology Vertex 2 120GB SSD!

Subject: Editorial, General Tech | April 18, 2011 - 11:11 AM |
Tagged: vertex, ssd, ocz, giveaway, contest

As you can no doubt tell, PC Perspective got a HUGE and much needed facelift over the weekend to what we are internally calling "PC Perspective v4.0".  I know there are still some kinks to work out and we are actively addressing any feedback from our readers in this comment thread.  

But we want to celebrate the launch of the new site in style!!  Some of our site sponsors have very generously offered up some prizes for us to give out throughout the coming days...

The first prize: a 120GB OCZ Technology Vertex 2 SSD!!

vertex2_new_angle_1.jpg

What do you have to do to win this wonderful piece of hardware?

Couldn't be easier: post a comment in this post thanking OCZ for its sponsorship of PC Perspective and maybe include a thought or two on the new site design (compliments, constructive criticism, hate filled monologues, whatever).  You should probably have a registered account or at least be sure you include your email address in the appropriate field so we can contact you!

We will pick a winner tomorrow and move on to the next hardware that finds its way to PC Perspective offices.  Good luck and thanks for reading!!

Android is number one in China ... at getting an infection

Subject: General Tech | April 15, 2011 - 11:56 AM |
Tagged: Virus, Malware, China, Android

"Android handsets used in China accounted for 64.1% of global virus/malware attacks in the first quarter of 2011, according to China-based mobile security solutions provider NetQin Mobile.

There were 2.53 million Android handsets infected by viruses or malware around the world during the first quarter, and most were in China due to the popularity of white-box Android handsets in the country, NetQin indicated. US ranked second with 7.6%, followed by Russia with 6.1%, India with 3.4%, Indonesia with 3.2%, Hong Kong with 2.7% and UK with 2.1%. In the first quarter, there were 1,014 new malware items and 101 new viruses, NetQin said.

Of the infected Android handsets globally, 57% were through downloading applications from Android Market, followed by using unbranded handsets with 17%, downloading applications from WAP or www. websites with 14%, using Bluetooth with 7% and using memory cards with 3%, it said.

A breakdown of the attacks by Android version shows that 1.6 and previous versions accounted for 5%, 2.1 34%, 2.2 45% and 2.3 16%."

InfectedAndroid.jpg

Here is some more Tech News from around the web:

Tech Talk

Source: DigiTimes

Windows 8 to offer OS-on-a-thumb-drive portability

Subject: General Tech | April 15, 2011 - 10:14 AM |
Tagged: windows, windows 8

This is pretty cool news that has found its way out with the first leaked released of Microsoft's Windows 8 prototype: integrated into the OS is support for "portable workspaces" that will allow a user to take a 16GB or larger USB thumb drive and build a bootable environment to take with them on the go.

win8portable.jpg

Source: Winrumors

The soundcards search for a new place in the world; external USB device?

Subject: General Tech | April 14, 2011 - 12:18 PM |
Tagged:

Soundcards have fallen hard from their mighty perch, once they were an absolute necessity to a PC user.   For a while they were simply a better choice by far than onboard sound, both in quality of sound and the efficiency of processing.  Now most people don't even look for a soundcard, modern motherboards happily provide 7.1 sound with almost no hit to the CPU for processing.  Overclockers Club investigates a new attempt by Diamond to draw people back to buying soundcards with their Diamond Xtreme External 7.1 USB Sound Card.  At $40, it turned out to have some interesting features to add to any type of system and was stellar on laptops.

 

"The main excelling point for the Diamond card is the analog music playback, which was due to its ability to up-mix 2 channel stereo, up to 8 channels, which, was 6 in my case. It did a great job at making the room offer a fuller music experience, while the onboard sound without 3rd party software can only play in 2 channels. Everything else was very similar in quality and it was difficult to tell a difference between the two options since movies and gaming are easily configured for 5.1 or 7.1 through the onboard sound."

Intel quietly cries "Me too!" about USB 3.0

Subject: General Tech | April 14, 2011 - 12:01 PM |
Tagged:

It seems that about the same time that AMD was basking in the glow of full certification for their implementation of USB 3.0 on their soon to be released Hudson platform, Intel was announcing that Ivy Bridge will also natively support USB 3.0.  The problem is that we aren't expecting to see hide nor hair of Ivy Bridge for about 12 months.  Hopefully some time before then we will see ThunderBucket or LightPeak on an Intel system, even if only a copper version.  The Inquirer has the scoop over here.

 

 

"Intel's announcement that its 2012 Ivy Bridge chipsets will support USB 3.0 came on the same day that the USB Association revealed that AMD will be incorporating USB 3.0 support into A75 and A70M Fusion chipsets. The Ivy Bridge decision means that eventually Intel mainboard vendors won't have to use third party silicon to provide USB 3.0 support."

Here is some more Tech News from around the web:

Tech Talk

 

Source: The Inquirer

PCMark 7 Release Date Announced, Preordering Begins

Subject: General Tech | April 14, 2011 - 11:22 AM |
Tagged:

HELSINKI, FINLAND – APRIL 14, 2011 – Futuremark® today confirmed that PCMark® 7, a new benchmark offering complete PC performance testing for Windows 7, will be released on May 3, 2011. PCMark 7 will be available in 3 editions: the Basic Edition, a free download offering unlimited runs of the main PCMark test, the Advanced Edition which includes all 7 PC tests and the Professional Edition which unlocks all features and is the only edition licensed for commercial use. The Advanced and Professional Editions can be pre-ordered now from http://www.pcmark.com.

PCMARK 7 BASIC EDITION – Free, available from May 3, 2011

  • Free PC test offering unlimited runs of the main PCMark test suite
  • Browse, search and compare results online
  • Store one result online

PCMARK 7 ADVANCED EDITION - $39.95 – PRE-ORDER NOW

  • Includes all 7 PC tests with more than 25 individual workloads
  • Browse, search and compare results online
  • Unlimited online results storage Hide results from public view
  • Offline result management
  • Advert-free online service

PCMARK 7 PROFESSIONAL EDITION - $995.00 – PRE-ORDER NOW

  • Licensed for commercial PC system testing
  • Includes all 7 PC tests with more than 25 individual workloads
  •  Command line automation
  • Browse, search and compare results online
  •  Unlimited online results storage
  • Hide results from public view
  • Offline result management
  • Advert-free online service
  • Priority support

PCMark 7 provides a set of 7 PC tests for measuring different aspects of PC performance with a high degree of accuracy. Overall system performance is measured by the PCMark test. The Lightweight test measures the capabilities of entry level systems and mobility platforms unable to run the full PCMark test. Common use performance is measured by the Entertainment, Creativity and Productivity tests. Component performance is measured by the Computation and Storage hardware tests. The Storage test is ideal for testing SSDs and external hard drives in addition to the system drive.

This one can test SSDs.
 

PCMark 7 will be released on May 3, 2011. PCMark 7 Advanced and Professional Editions can be pre-ordered now from http://www.pcmark.com.

Source: PCMark

A PC gamer is finally reunited with Shift 2 Unleashed

Subject: General Tech | April 13, 2011 - 02:12 PM |
Tagged:

Over at The Tech Report is a PC gamer with a bit of console envy, as they are a fan of racing games which is a genre that tends to be poorly implemented on the PC.  Spotting a copy of Shift 2 Unleashed for sale on Steam, at $10 less than the console version, he picked it up to try it out.  Unfortunately it was as graphically unimpressive as he feared, not ugly but certainly not able to push his hardware to the limit. However, once getting into the game he found a wide selection of cars and decently immersive gameplay.  If you are a fan of racing games it seems that Shift 2 Unleashed should be on your list of must play games.

"In his latest blog post, TR's Geoff Gasior digs into the PC version of Shift 2 Unleashed to see if it's a worthy challenger to dominant console driving sims like Forza Motorsport and Gran Turismo."

Here is some more Tech News from around the web:

Gaming

 

Folding@Home on AMD GPUs takes a leap forward

Subject: General Tech | April 13, 2011 - 12:01 PM |
Tagged:

The Folding@Home distributed computing program has long been able to run on GPUs, but the latest optimizations are for GPUs that support CUDA.  As CUDA is a relatively closed source architecture from NVIDIA, that leaves AMD GPU users in the cold; with long time users still using CAL/Direct3D to power their GPU Folding efforts.  According to a news story Hardware Canucks spotted, this is about to change as Stanford is working on optimizing F@H for OpenCL and the tests show almost a doubling of performance.  Do keep in mind that F@H results can change from day to day but this is definitely a good sign.

If you have not yet encountered Folding@Home or are unclear as to why people give their spare processing cycles to the project you should drop by this thread in our own Folding@Home Forum which describes many of the reasons people choose to fold.  If you feel the cause is worthy enough for you to join up, it would be a great idea to join the Folding Frogs, our own PC Perspective Folding@Home team.  You can learn all about the Folding Frogs and how to join in this thread, if you already fold and would like to jump aboard then we are Team 734.

"A few weeks ago, Stanford introduced the new Core 16 Project 11293 work units which are specifically tailored towards OpenCL-supporting AMD graphics cards. But do they bring the hoped-for increase in Folding@Home performance or is this yet another step towards disappointment?"

Here is some more Tech News from around the web:

Tech Talk

More mid-ranged 6000 family GPUs coming from AMD

Subject: General Tech | April 12, 2011 - 06:43 PM |
Tagged:

If you are in the market for a mid-range GPU and don't mind waiting a week, AMD will be releasing the 6670, 6570 and 6450 next Tuesday.  You will want to exercise some caution when purchasing the cards however as this is the level of card most popular with OEM system builders and they will be receiving DDR3 based cards not GDDR5 based cards.  If a particular model claims to have more memory that others without a change in price it will most likely be using DDR3 which will be slower, though not to a snails pace. 

Thanks to DigiTimes for the scoop.

"AMD is set launch three new graphics card under its Radeon HD 6000 series - 6670, 6570 and 6450 on April 19, targeting the entry-level and mid-range markets, according to sources from graphics card makers.

The sources pointed out that AMD's recently launched Radeon HD 6790 graphics card currently has a better market impression than Nvidia's GTX 550 Ti mainly because of its friendly price; therefore, AMD is set to launch more graphics cards with low price to gain market share.

Although AMD has already released the OEM version of the three new graphics cards, the new version will adopt GDDR5 memory, instead of DDR3 memory, which is used in the OEM versions.

With its Radeon HD 6000 series product lines fully filled, AMD is already in preparation for the next generation Radeon HD 7000 series (Southern Islands) GPUs and is set to mass produce the GPU in May this year."

Here is some more Tech News from around the web:

Tech Talk

Source: Digitimes