All | Editorial | General Tech | Graphics Cards | Networking | Motherboards | Cases and Cooling | Processors | Chipsets | Memory | Displays | Systems | Storage | Mobile | Shows and Expos
Subject: General Tech, Graphics Cards, Mobile | February 11, 2015 - 08:00 AM | Scott Michaud
Tagged: shieldtuesday, shield, nvidia, gridtuesday, grid, graphics drivers, geforce, drivers
Update: Whoops! The title originally said "374.52", when it should be "347.52". My mistake. Thanks "Suddenly" in the comments!
Two things from NVIDIA this week, a new driver and a new game for the NVIDIA GRID. The new driver aligns with the release of Evolve, which came out on Tuesday from the original creators of Left4Dead. The graphics vendor also claims that it will help Assassin's Creed: Unity, Battlefield 4, Dragon Age: Inquisition, The Crew, and War Thunder. Several SLi profiles were also added for Alone in the Dark: Illumination, Black Desert, Dying Light, H1Z1, Heroes of the Storm, Saint's Row: Gat out of Hell, Total War: Attila, and Triad Wars.
On the same day, NVIDIA released Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons on GRID, bringing the number of available games up to 37. This game came out in August 2013 and received a lot of critical praise. Its control style is unique, using dual-thumbstick gamepads to simultaneously control both characters. More importantly, despite being short, the game is said to have an excellent story, even achieving Game of the Year (2013) for TotalBiscuit based on its narrative, which is not something that he praises often.
I'd comment on the game, but I've yet to get the time to play it. Apparently it is only a couple hours long, so maybe I can fit it in somewhere.
Also, they apparently are now calling this “#SHIELDTuesday” rather than “#GRIDTuesday”. I assume this rebranding is because people may not know that GRID exists, but they would certainly know if they purchased an Android-based gaming device for a couple hundred dollars or more. We could read into this and make some assumptions about GRID adoption rates versus SHIELD purchases, or even purchases of the hardware itself versus their projections, but it would be pure speculation.
Both announcements were made available on Tuesday, for their respective products.
Subject: Cases and Cooling | February 10, 2015 - 03:49 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: mATX, thermaltake, Core X2
mATX is becoming more popular as it becomes possible to fit high end components into a smaller case than was previously possible. This has also lead companies to start producing a wide variety of these cases for users to choose from. [H]ard|OCP recently reviewed one of these cases designed by Thermaltake, the Core X2. The case is 18.3"H x 12.6"W x 21.3"L (465x320x541mm) and all of the intakes have removable filters as well as numerous other features including the ability to be stacked in multiples for better cooling. The side panels can be swapped as can the location of the housing for the USB 3.0, microphone, power and reset buttons giving you a lot of flexibility on how you set up your system. Check out the full review to see what else Thermaltake's chassis can do.
"While you may or may not be in the market for a mATX sized computer case, the Thermaltake Core X2 mATX Cube Chassis has some interesting features for those looking to do custom water cooling and wanting to have some easy ways to show it off. All that aside, just how good of an mATX case is it?"
Here are some more Cases & Cooling reviews from around the web:
- Lian Li DK-02X @ techPowerUp
- Sentey Optimus Plus @ Benchmark Reviews
- Xigmatek Aquila Micro-ATX @ eTeknix
- BitFenix Pandora @ Kitguru
- Aerocool Strike-X Cube Micro-ATX @ eTeknix
- ID-Cooling T60-SFX @ techPowerUp
- Silverstone Kublai KL05 @ Legion Hardware
- Corsair Hydro H110i GT CPU Cooler Review @ Madshrimps
- Corsair H110i GT Cooler @ HardwareHeaven
- Corsair H110i GT @ Kitguru
- Deepcool Gamer Storm Captain 360 @ techPowerUp
- Noctua NH-D9L Low Profile Tower Cooler Review @ Neoseeker
- Noctua NH-D9L CPU Cooler Review: The Mini NH-D15 @ Modders-Inc
Subject: General Tech | February 10, 2015 - 02:11 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: microsoft, windows 10, rumour
We may see Windows 10 RTM as early as June of this year on new machines and likely as an upgrade option to those running Windows 7 or 8, with the trademarking of Windows 365 lending credence to this rumour. The Register had a chance to try and parse the most mysterious part of this new OS, the Windows-as-a-service model and what that will mean for users. Microsoft has explained that when a user buys a device with Windows 10 they will "continue to keep it current for the supported lifetime of the device – at no additional charge." Unfortunately it is not clear what is meant by the 'supported lifetime' nor what happens when that time expires; it is likely that a subscription will need to be renewed or that you will have to get a new device. It is also unclear how this model will work for serial upgraders, in the past you could simply re-license your installation of Windows a finite time before needing to contact Microsoft to ask them to activate your license again.
What we do know for sure for the Enterprise version is that will be several Long Term Servicing contracts, which provide security and critical updates for a 5 year mainstream contract followed by a 5 year extended support contract. There will also be a Current Branch for Business which will receive updates via Windows Update or WSUS after patches have been distributed to consumers and fully tested. To be able to use Windows 10 a company must maintain a subscription for Software Assurance as opposed to being limited to the nebulous "supported lifetime" of their machines.
"Windows chief Terry Myerson proclaimed the advent of Windows-as-a-service at an event last month. But what does that mean? A more recent post from Enterprise and Security Directory Jim Alkove offers some clues."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- 8K display standard renders all your new technology obsolete @ The Inquirer
- Faster Raspberry Pi 2 Says Yes to Ubuntu and Windows, But Where's Android? @ Linux.com
- Helium HDD prices rise way above air-filled spinning rust @ The Register
- Quantum-dot TVs seed a bright future @ Nanotechweb
- Android Patent Dispute: Microsoft, Samsung hug it out @ The Register
- This optical disc will keep your gumble safe for 2,000 YEARS @ The Register
- Tech ARP 2015 Mega Giveaway @ TechARP
Subject: Cases and Cooling | February 10, 2015 - 12:05 PM | Sebastian Peak
Tagged: liquid cooler, H80i GT, H100i GTX, cpu cooler, corsair, All-in-One cooler, AIO
In the automotive world "GT" stands for Gran Turismo (or Grand Tourer), though it often connotes that a model will have more power and speed. Thus, in the parlance of PC components it makes sense that this would represent the fast version of a part - or in this case, a cooler version.
The Corsair H100i GTX
We haven’t reviewing one of the new "GT" all-in-one liquid cooler revisions from Corsair just yet (stay tuned, we will soon!) but we reported on the new H110i GT cooler during CES 2015, which is a large 280mm design. The two new coolers being announced will be the smaller 240mm and 120mm entries in the Hydro series of AIO coolers, and they presumably replace the venerable “i” versions of the well-known H100 and H80 liquid coolers in the lineup.
The Corsair H80i GT
Extending the same new colorful (and customizable) design options from the previously mentioned H110i cooler, the new H100i GTX and H80i GT share these features:
- Improved coldplate and pump design
- Dual SP120L PWM static pressure fans
- Modular, tool-free mounting bracket for faster installation
- Built-in Corsair Link support for configuring fan and pump speeds
- Use Corsair Link to customize the RGB LED lighting and monitor multiple system temps
- Support for Intel LGA 115x, 1366, 2011 and AMD AM2, AM3, FM1, FM2 coolers
- 5-year limited warranty
The new H100i GTX water block design
There are a couple of important distinctions separating these new models (other than the obvious size difference). With the H80i GT this is the radiator thickness, which is a whopping 49mm thick, making its potential for heavy-duty cooling in smaller spaces a very interesting prospect. The H100i GTX on the other hand offers user-replaceable pump and radiator caps.
The H80i GT's 49mm thick radiator
The MSRP for the H100i GTX will be $119.99, with the H80i GT priced at $99.99. These will be available from the usual retail locations beginning this month.
Microsoft Filed for "Windows 365" Trademark in Late January. Jeremy Prepares to File for Windows 340 through 364?
Subject: General Tech, Systems | February 10, 2015 - 12:55 AM | Scott Michaud
Tagged: windows 365, windows 10, windows, office 365, microsoft
While it is trivial for a large corporation to file for a trademark, there are fairly strict guidelines with how they are used (or, more accurately, not-used). Because trademarks can be forever, the law outlines numerous procedures that can classify them as abandoned, which lets Coca Cola be a known, legitimate source of Coca Cola for as long as Coca Cola makes Coca Cola, while preventing businesses from being created that do nothing but license names.
Patents! I'm looking at you!
So the news is that Microsoft filed for the trademark, “Windows 365”. Knowing their trademark on Office 365, people are assuming that this will lead to a subscription version of Windows. The trademark filing is then compared to the statements made by Terry Myerson about Windows as a Service and the free upgrade from Windows 7 and Windows 8.x for a year. You can see where this is headed.
But I have another idea. Perhaps this is intended to lead into their not-yet-disclosed enterprise licensing arrangement for Windows 10 (and related services)? Despite its consumer sound, Office 365 seems to have a fairly large adoption rate with business and education customers. As an example, which is not statistically relevant but is still interesting, the local public school board where I live has licensed a non-commercial, 5-PC license for every staff and student in their organization. This concept has a lot of potential for those customers.
If, of course, they give us a per-device and system builder license option, too.
Subject: General Tech | February 7, 2015 - 11:44 PM | Tim Verry
Tagged: folder sync, file syncing, bittorrent sync, bittorrent, backup
The team at BitTorrent Labs has released a new Sync beta build that incorporates all of the planned Sync Pro features and allows users to update from the stable Sync 1.4 build while importing all of their folders. The latest build, version 2.0.51, is available for Windows, Mac, and Linux PCs as well as Android (Sync 2.0.34) and Kindle Fire mobile devices. Users can grab the download from this Sync forum thread.
Sync 2.0.51 was deployed to test the upgrade and folder import path from 1.4. Unfortunately, the new build is not compatible with any previous Sync 2.0 (alpha) builds so users that are already testing will have to start from scratch whereas if you are just now jumping in as a tester you can keep your folders set up as is.
The latest Sync beta turns on all of the Sync Pro features (image from Sync blog).
I was able to successfully update to the new build on my main PC and Android smartphone. Unfortunately, I can not go into many details regarding my experience as testers have been asked to not talk publicly about the builds until further along in development. You are welcome to try it out for yourself though.
Sync 1.4 (left) users can upgrade to the new Sync 2.0.51 beta (right) and import their folders.
The public forum thread does mention that the new build includes a trial of Sync Pro features including a private identity that allows you to easily link all of your devices together and a selective syncronization feature that uses placeholder files and allows you to choose which files you want to download for offline access on a per device basis (a feature that caused controversy for Microsoft over OneDrive removing placeholder files in Windows 10). A new permissions engine is also in effect and you are able to change permissions after the fact now without generating a new link.
In all, Sync is still in development and they have some neat features in the works that will make it more competitive with other file syncing services.
Subject: Graphics Cards | February 7, 2015 - 06:03 PM | Scott Michaud
Tagged: amd, R9, r9 300, r9 390x, radeon
According to WCCFTech, AMD commented on Facebook that they are “putting the finishing touches on the 300 series to make sure they live up to expectation”. I tried look through AMD's “Posts to Page” for February 3rd and I did not see it listed, so a grain of salt is necessary (either with WCCF or with my lack of Facebook skills).
Image Credit: WCCFTech
The current rumors claim that Fiji XT will have 4096 graphics cores that are fed by a high-bandwidth, stacked memory architecture, which is supposedly rated at 640 GB/s (versus 224 GB/s of the GeForce GTX 980). When you're dealing with data sets at the scale that GPUs are, bandwidth is a precious resource. That said, they also have cache and other methods to reduce this dependency, but let's just say that, if you offer a graphics vendor a free, order-of-magnitude speed-up in memory bandwidth -- you will have friend, and possibly one for life. Need a couch moved? No problem!
The R9 Series is expected to be launched next quarter, which could be as early as about a month.
Subject: Memory | February 6, 2015 - 08:40 PM | Tim Verry
Tagged: overclocking, kingston hyper x, kingston, ddr4, ces 20156, CES
Overclocker "Toppc" from MSI was able to crank a single stick of DDR4 memory to a world record 4,351 MHz at the International CES 2015 competition. Toppc paired the Kingston Predator DDR4 DIMM with an Intel Haswell-E Core i7-5960X processor and a MSI X99S Xpower AC motherboard. After disabling all but one CPU core and adding in copious amounts of liquid nitrogen, the 4GB memory module was overclocked to 4,351 MHz which was measured using CPU-Z (CPU-Z Validation) and verified with an oscilloscope (shown in the embedded video below).
This overclock is quite impressive even if it is not something you can run at home especially for DDR4 which is designed to use less power than DDR3. Out of the box the DIMMs are rated at up to 3,333 MHz which means they achieved an impressive 30.54% overclock (an increase of 1,018 MHz).
This kind of overclock will only result in marginal performance gains (at best) in everyday applications, but is still cool to see. Also, it surely won't hurt benchmark runs!
Subject: Displays | February 6, 2015 - 03:49 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: XL2420G, NVIDA, g-sync, benq, 24
On Amazon the BenQ XL2420G is $540, or $529 from B&H Photo, not inexpensive but within the grasp of more people than some of the larger and more expensive G-SYNC monitors. It has a maximum refresh rate of 144Hz as you expect from this style of monitor and it does indeed support Nvidia's 3D Vision, although some may be deterred by the 1080p resolution and the fact that it is a TN panel. Some features do need to be sacrificed to bring the price down and the simple fact is that there are no IPS G-SYNC monitors currently for sale and TN is the faster type of monitor and this display is all about speed. The Tech Report tried it out and were very impressed, check the full review to see why.
"Today, we're turning our attention to BenQ's XL2420G, a 24" G-Sync monitor that's currently selling for about $580 at Newegg. This display is a little smaller and more affordable than some of the other G-Sync offerings we've looked at, but it's not lacking in functionality or connectivity. Quite the opposite."
Here are some more Display articles from around the web:
- BenQ XL2420G G-SYNC Monitor Review @ Hardware Canucks
- Nvidia G-SYNC: A New gaming experience seen on the ASUS SWIFT PG278Q Display @ Bjorn3d
- ASUS PB279Q 4K Monitor @ Kitguru
Subject: Systems | February 6, 2015 - 02:04 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: linux, nuc, Broadwell
After the great experience Phoronix had setting up the X1 Carbon with both Fedora and Ubuntu, they purchased a new Broadwell based NUC to experiment with. This model uses the Core i3 5010U with an onboard 900MHz HD Graphics 5500, support for 2 DIMMs of up to 64GB of DDR3-1866, an M.2 SSD card and a 2.5" HDD or SSD. Intel has stated that Ubuntu, Linux Mint, Fedora, and openSUSE will all be compatible so Phoronix has a bit of testing ahead of them. There are no benchmarks as of yet but you can see their teardown of this new NUC here.
"With wrapping up my Core i7 5600U Broadwell Linux tests using the new ThinkPad X1 Carbon in the next few days, fortunately the Intel BOXNUC5I3RYH just arrived as the first available NUC Kit shipping with a Broadwell processor. The NUC5i3RYH features a Broadwell Core i3 processor, HD Graphics 5500, and support for a M.2 SSD card and 2.5-inch HDD/SSD."
Here are some more Systems articles from around the web:
- ECS Liva X Mini PC @ Kitguru
- CyberpowerPC SYBER GAMING VAPOR A @ Bjorn3d
- ChillBlast Fusion Nano Custom System @ Kitguru
- Shuttle Barebone XH97V Review @ Madshrimps
Subject: General Tech | February 6, 2015 - 01:03 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: usb 3.1, usb type-c
The speed difference between USB 3.1 and 3.0 is not quite as significant as the difference between 2.0 and 3.0, it only doubles the speed to 10Gbps but it offers other advantages as well. For instance no longer will you need to flip your device three times to plug it in, the backwards compatible Type C connector will fit in either orientation which is seemingly a small thing until you spend a lot of time reaching under desks trying to plug peripherals in. Kitguru tested the speed of two Intel 730 SSDs in RAID 0 on the MSI X99A Gaming 9 ACK which has USB 3.1 provided by the ASMedia ASM1142 chipset. The test results came close to the theoretical maximum, easily beating USB 3.0. Check out the full review here.
"And that's where USB 3.1 comes in. A 10Gbps link speed, up to 100W of power delivery, and upcoming widespread application of a new Type-C connector are some of the key features that the new version will usher in."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- Silicene takes on graphene as next transistor wonder-stuff @ The Register
- Windows 10 support on the Raspberry Pi 2 could shape the future of IoT @ The Inquirer
- Bankrupt RadioShack to close up to 2,900 stores, share others with Sprint @ The Register
- Farmers Struggling With High-Tech Farm Equipment @ Slashdot
- How To Activate The Samsung Galaxy Gear S Smartwatch Without A Samsung Smartphone @ Tech ARP
Subject: Storage | February 5, 2015 - 02:57 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: usb, team group, M131, Micro USB
Team Group M131 Smart Dual Drive is so named because it can plug into both full sized USB and with the additional connector it can connect to Micro USB ports as well. It's tiny size at 44 x 16.6 mm and 6.6g makes it easy to carry around, the largest size of 32GB may feel cramped for a PC but seems appropriate for use with a smartphone. It is not the fastest USB drive out there but eTeknix saw it for sale at £7.19 so you are not paying extra for the convenience of the drive. Check out their review here.
"The limited storage in mobile devices can be a real problem just as the fact that a touchscreen rarely is the optimal input device. Both these things might be a thing of the past if you invest in a Team Group M131 Smart Dual Drive with OTG support that. I’m taking a closer look at 16GB model of just this drive today."
Here are some more Storage reviews from around the web:
- Kingston DataTraveler microDuo 3.0 OTG 64GB USB Flash Drive Review @ NikKTech
- Patriot Memory Supersonic Boost XT 64GB USB 3.0 Flash Drive Review @ Madshrimps
- Kingston Class 10 UHS-I SDXC Card (256 GB) @ TechARP
- Thecus N4310 4-Bay NAS @ eTeknix
- Asustor AS5104T @ Legion Hardware
- Silverstone DS380 NAS Chassis @ eTeknix
- OCZ Challenge update: All 5 ARC 100 SSD’s hit 300TB mark @ Kitguru
Subject: General Tech | February 5, 2015 - 02:05 PM | Ken Addison
Tagged: podcast, video, g-sync, GTX 970, gigabyte, brix s, broadwell-u, Intel, nuc, arm, Cortex-A72, mediatek, amd, Godavari, Raspberry Pi, windows 10
PC Perspective Podcast #335 - 02/05/2015
Join us this week as we discuss Mobile G-Sync, GTX 970 SLI, a Broadwell Brix 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: 1:28:13
Subject: General Tech | February 5, 2015 - 12:44 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: winRT, microsoft
Microsoft has quietly smothered the last WinRT device on the market, spelling the end of the ARM powered version of Windows. The non-Pro versions of the Surface attracted sellers with a very low price but then repulsed them with the performance and lack of support for basic applications. The Lumia 2520 was perhaps a better implementation of WinRT but again was not very successful against the competition. The Surface Pro 2 will continue to be produced and sold but its red haired stepchild has been show the door. Microsoft did confirm with The Register that this does not mean the end of Windows on ARM by any means, Win10 will be found on many devices in the coming year including ARM powered ones.
"The software giant confirmed on Wednesday to The Register that it has stopped manufacturing the Nokia Lumia 2520, a 10.1-inch Windows RT tablet with a quad-core ARM processor, an HD display, and 4G LTE wireless connectivity."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- The TR Podcast 169: Windows 10, Elon's Musk, and the gimpy GTX 970
- Intel silicon photonics modules can't take the heat of the HPC kitchen @ The Register
- Title II wins America the battle for net neutrality, but the war is about to begin @ The Inquirer
- Google updates: Apple and Microsoft are developing for Android @ The Inquirer
- Google Quietly Unveils Android 5.1 Lollipop @ Slashdot
- Watch — Then Build — This Millennium Falcon Quadcopter @ MAKE:Blog
Subject: General Tech | February 4, 2015 - 04:10 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: gaming, sid meier, starships, civilization
The video posted at Rock, Paper, SHOTGUN does not show gameplay until the 30 minute mark but may still interest you before that so try not to immediately skip until the launch screen. Once you do, you will see that Starships does borrow from Beyond Earth, with the idea of Affinities granting specific bonuses based on the leader you chose but then it immediately changes. Starships of varying sizes and components become your troops, maps become dynamic with the addition of asteroids on the field which move, interfering with your weaponry as well as your movement and solar systems replace cities. The way you end your turn has also changed, instead of a limited amount of moves and attacks your ships have a crew which tires as you use the ship and let you choose to keep going with penalties due to the fatigue of your crew or send them on shore leave to end their usefulness for that turn. Check out the video to see what you think of this new face to Sid Meier.
"Meier also tackles the thorny question “how do you put maps in space?” and clarifies that people who call themselves ‘marauders’ don’t tend to be terribly friendly.
The Starships footage kicks off at around the 30 minute mark, but the more patient view can enjoy a whole 50 minutes of Sidchat."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- Death becomes it: Grim Fandango Remastered @ The Register
- Humble Bundle offers nine classic Star Wars games for $12 @ HEXUS
- How You Can Make a AAA Game Like Today's Developers @ the escapist
- For The Emperwhaaa? Warhammer 40,000: Regicide Trailer @ Rock, Paper, SHOTGUN
Subject: General Tech | February 4, 2015 - 02:04 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: patents, legal, IEEE
Ah the sweet irony in the statement from IP Watchdog which states that the decision which "reduces the possibility that a patent holder that has made an IEEE RAND Commitment could hold up implementers of a standard and obtain higher prices" somehow represents a "threat to American-led innovation". The IEEE requested this update to prevent cases such as this one which demanded $2000 per location for any business with a wireless router from ever reaching the courts. Unless you feel that the companies whose business model is to sue people based on exploiting loopholes in existing patent agreements in which case you probably do not agree this is for the best. You can read more over at The Register if the legal document from the DOJ is not up your alley.
"The US Department of Justice (DoJ) has okayed new IEEE standards licensing rules designed to end some of the seemingly-endless lawsuits over standards-essential patents - and the trolls aren't happy."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- ARM unveils Cortex-A72 CPU, Mali-T880 graphics, and more
- Watt the CHIP!? ARM pops out THE most powerful 64-bit Cortex for mobes'n'slabs @ The Register
- Alibaba Tests Drone Delivery Service In China @ Slashdot
- Samsung announces ePoP all-in-one memory for smartphones @ The Inquirer
- TP-LINK Competition – Win Faster Wireless Technology! @ Kitguru
Subject: Graphics Cards, Shows and Expos | February 4, 2015 - 03:33 AM | Scott Michaud
Tagged: OpenGL Next, opengl, glnext, gdc 2015, GDC
The first next-gen, released graphics API was Mantle, which launched a little while after Battlefield 4, but the SDK is still invite-only. The DirectX 12 API quietly launched with the recent Windows 10 Technical Preview, but no drivers, SDK, or software (that we know about) are available to the public yet. The Khronos Group has announced their project, and that's about it currently.
According to Develop Magazine, the GDC event listing, and participants, the next OpenGL (currently called “glNext initiative”) will be unveiled at GDC 2015. The talk will be presented by Valve, but it will also include Epic Games, who was closely involved in DirectX 12 with Unreal Engine, Oxide Games and EA/DICE, who were early partners with AMD on Mantle, and Unity, who recently announced support for DirectX 12 when it launches with Windows 10. Basically, this GDC talk includes almost every software developer that came out in early support of either DirectX 12 or Mantle, plus Valve. Off the top of my head, I can only think of FutureMark as unlisted. On the other hand, while they will obviously have driver support from at least one graphics vendor, none are listed. Will we see NVIDIA? Intel? AMD? All of the above? We don't know.
When I last discussed the next OpenGL initiative, it was attempting to parse the naming survey to figure out bits of the technology itself. As it turns out, the talk claims to go deep into the API, with demos, examples, and “real-world applications running on glNext drivers and hardware”. If this information makes it out (and some talks remain private unfortunately although this one looks public) then we should know more about it than what we know about any competing API today. Personally, I am hoping that they spent a lot of effort on the GPGPU side of things, sort-of building graphics atop it rather than having them be two separate entities. This would be especially good if it could be sandboxed for web applications.
This could get interesting.
Subject: General Tech, Systems, Mobile | February 3, 2015 - 05:35 PM | Scott Michaud
Tagged: razer blade, razer, nvidia, Intel, GTX 970M
When the Razer Blade launched, it took a classy design and filled it with high-end gaming components. Its competitors in the gaming space were often desktop replacements, which were powerful but not comfortable, every-day laptops. The Blade also came with a $2800 (at the time) price-tag, and that stunted a lot of reviews. It has been refreshed a few times since then, including today.
The New Razer Blade QHD+ has a 14-inch 3200x1800 display, with multi-touch and an LED backlight. The panel is IGZO, which is a competitor to IPS for screens with a high number of pixels per inch (such as the 4K PQ321Q from ASUS). This is housed in a milled aluminum chassis that is about 7/10th of an inch thick.
Its power brick is rated at 150W, which is surprisingly high for a laptop. I am wondering how much of that electricity is headroom for fast-charging (versus higher performance when not on battery). Most power adapters for common laptops that I've seen are between 60W and 95W. In a small, yet meticulously designed chassis, I would have to assume that thermal headroom of either the heatsinks or the components themselves would be the limiting factor.
On the topic of specifications, they are expectedly high-end.
The GPU was upgraded to the GeForce GTX 970M with 3GB of VRAM (up from a 3GB 870M) and the CPU is now a Core i7-4720HQ (up from a Core i7-4702HQ). The system memory also got doubled, to 16GB (up from 8GB). It also has 3 USB 3.0 ports, HDMI 1.4a out, 802.11a/b/g/n/ac, Bluetooth 4.0, and (of course) a high-end, backlit keyboard. Razer offers a choice in M.2 SSD capacity: 128GB for $2199.99, 256GB for $2399.99, or 512GB for $2699.99. This is kind-of expensive for solid state memory, $1.56/GB for the jump to 256GB and $1.17/GB to go from there to 512GB.
The New Razer Blade Gaming Laptop is available now at Razerzone.com in the US, Canada, Singapore, and Hong Kong. It will arrive at Microsoft Stores in the USA on February 16th. China, Australia, New Zealand, Malaysia, UAE, Japan, Korea, Taiwan, and Russia can purchase it on Razerzone.com in March. Prices start (as stated above) at $2199.99.
Subject: Cases and Cooling | February 3, 2015 - 04:30 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: fractal design, edison m series, PSU, 650W, 80 Plus Gold
Fractal Design's 650W EDISON M Series semi-modular PSU has a bit of an interesting mix of features for a 650W PSU which drive the price up somewhat. TechPowerUp puts it's MSRP at $105 which is a bit pricey for a 650W PSU which is not totally modular but with an 80 PLUS Gold rating and a 5 year warranty the price is somewhat justified. The single 12V rail is capable of providing up to 54A to the six 6+2 PCIe power connectors, giving you some ability to power dual GPUs. In the end, it proved to be a solid performer but the decision to sacrifice a second EPS connector for the additional PCIe plugs and the pricing prevented it from winning an award. It is still work checking out if you do not need a second EPS plug.
"Fractal Design has for the first time worked with Seasonic, and the outcome is the Edison Modular series. Today, we will take a detailed look at the Edison M with 650 W capacity, the second-strongest unit of the series. It features Gold-certified efficiency, a semi-modular cabling design, and an FDB fan."
Here are some more Cases & Cooling reviews from around the web:
- SilverStone SST-SX600-G 600W Power Supply Unit Review @ NikKTech
- Antec EDGE 750W Power Supply Unit Review @ NikKTech
- be quiet! Straight Power 10 psu with 800 Watts @ HardwareOverclock
- FSP Aurum PT 1000W @ Kitguru
Subject: Cases and Cooling | February 3, 2015 - 01:51 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: swiftech, H240-X, AIO, water cooling
The Swiftech H240-X will be released with an MSRP of $150, $10 more than the smaller H220-X which [H]ard|OCP had a chance to review previously. This model shares the same same pump and water block as the H220-X but uses a pair of 140mm fans to move heat away from the radiator. [H]ard|OCP tested the watercooler twice, once with the included fans which are designed for quiet operation as well as a second set designed for more powerful cooling which did give them slightly better performance. If you prefer peace and quiet the included fans are definitely the way to go, at maximum speed they hit about 41dBA and can operate at lower speeds and noise levels at the cost of increased CPU temperature. [H]ard|OCP does find the price to be a bit high compared to the competition but as they point out, these two Swiftech kits are the only ones on the market with enough cooling power that you could easily add a GPU into the cooling loop without needing to upgrade your pump or radiator.
"Swiftech's H240-X is not your typical All-in-One, aka "AIO," CPU cooler. It is also a bit more expensive than your usual AIO. It does however deliver to you a tremendously upgradable equipment set that allows its buyers a economical ramp into a fully custom liquid cooling system for your entire computer."
Here are some more Cases & Cooling reviews from around the web:
- Fractal Design Kelvin S24 Expandable AIO CPU @ eTeknix
- SilverStone Argon AR05 Low-Profile CPU Cooler Review @ NikKTech
- Noctua NH-D15 CPU Tower Air Cooler Review @ Madshrimps
- Phanteks PH-TC14S and PH-TC12LS High Compatibility CPU Cooler Review @HiTech Legion
- Phanteks PH-TC14S & Cryorig C1 CPU Coolers @ Silent PC Review
- Noctua NH-U9S, NH-D9L and Alpenföhn Ben Nevis @ HardwareOverclock
- BitFenix Pandora Micro-ATX Chassis With ICON Display @ eTeknix
- In Win D-Frame Mini @ techPowerUp
- Synergy of Style and Design: A Review of the Corsair Graphite 780T @ Techgage
- Corsair Carbide 330R Titanium Edition Review @ Neoseeker
- Thermaltake Core V21 Micro-ATX @ Benchmark Reviews
- Raidmax Hyperion Micro-ATX @ Benchmark Reviews
- Fractal Design Core 3500 Midi Tower @ HardwareOverclock