For when you need professional help

Subject: General Tech | May 8, 2008 - 01:41 PM |

Razer's Destructor Professional Gaming Mat claims some rather impressive improvements in mouse movement when you use it.  Think Computers concurs, they found that when they used to mat, they actually had to reduce their mouse's sensitivity.  Check out the pad it's self, it's carrying case, and ponder over their warning; "excessive rubbing of the mousepad will result in numbing in the fingers."

Full function HTPC remote and display

Subject: Systems | May 8, 2008 - 01:16 PM |

The VL System M-Play Blast is a combo LCD display and remote control perfect for an HTPC system that doesn't have either set up in it's case.  It gives you a lot more freedom to choose an HTPC case, as you are no longer limited to picking up a case that has them already included.  Check out the software suite and hardware over at Tweaknews

Source: Tweaknews

Crossover cables are teh lame

Subject: General Tech | May 8, 2008 - 01:03 PM |

Crossover cables and the simple bit of networking setup you need to seems to have become too much work.  The USB Fever USB 2.0 Computer Copy Cable makes it much easier.  Drop by OCIA and see if you want to add this $20 doohickey for your mobile repair toolbox.

Source: OCIA

They'll sign almost anything

Subject: Cases and Cooling | May 7, 2008 - 05:58 PM |

Not to say that the Antec Signature 850W is a bad PSU, in fact it is far from it.  The problem lies in it's marketing; you might expect a Signature Series to be the best a company can provide.  Instead, with an MSRP of $299 this Antec PSU is not certified for either SLI or Crossfire and it's voltage varies almost all the way to the edges of the ATX specs.  It is good, but not as good others AnandTech has reviewed.

Source: AnandTech

As you are going to soon have heard on the podcast

Subject: Motherboards | May 7, 2008 - 04:17 PM |

Ryan has polished off his review of the new nVIDIA chipset for AMD processors, the 780a, specifically the ASUS M3N-HT.   Go read the full review, so that when the PC Perspective Podcast is posted, you can follow along with our discussion of hybrid SLI and onboard graphics turning off discrete graphics cards completely, and taking over for the less 3D intensive applications, such as anything that is not gaming.  That way you will have some great questions to leave for us on the podcast voicemail; which we can play and answer duri

Thermaltake goes bargain basement

Subject: Cases and Cooling | May 7, 2008 - 01:14 PM |

Thermaltake's M9 has a lot to attract users, from it's low price to well done air cooling and tool-less installation.  It would be nice to see a removable motherboard tray as well as the ability to add more fans, but if you need more serious cooling, you can always fit on a pair of more powerful 120mm fans.  See how this case looks, empty and full, over at Overcloc

Network speed is anything but academic

Subject: General Tech | May 7, 2008 - 11:52 AM |

Looking to see what the next generation of the internet's backbone might look like?  Try checking out the Large Hadron Collider, which
"requires large data flows between specific sites - 2-hour periods with 8 gig flow across the network".  Academic and institutional networks have always been at the forefront of speed and the average enthusiast may start to see the benefits of the work they have pioneered.  Read what Ars Technica thinks we could be seeing soon, and just how the universitie

Source: Ars Technica

Sprint and Clearwire to Combine WiMAX Businesses, Creating a New Mobile Broadband Company

Subject: Mobile | May 7, 2008 - 11:25 AM |

KIRKLAND, Wash. and OVERLAND PARK, Kan. - May 7, 2008 - Clearwire Corporation (NASDAQ: CLWR) and Sprint Nextel Corporation (NYSE: S) today announced that they have entered into a definitive agreement to combine their next generation wireless broadband businesses to form a new wireless communications company.

You can't keep a XFi down

Subject: General Tech | May 6, 2008 - 04:20 PM |

Even with the controversy surrounding Creative, their products are still popular.  The Auzentech X-Fi Prelude 7.1
is one such product, and it is up for review on TweakTown.  Auzentech has licensed the technology from Creative, so this card is not going to cause the uproar that the ASUS card recently has. 

Source: TweakTown

Sometimes it's the warranty that does it

Subject: Storage | May 6, 2008 - 01:58 PM |

Phoronix compared a pair of 4GB Secure Digital High Capacity cards, one from OCZ and one from Crucial.  They used hdparm to compare performance, and each clocked in around 13MB/s, with the OCZ being a tiny bit faster.  Since they both cost the same, and the performance difference is unnoticeable,
the lifetime warranty on the on the Crucial SDHC really stands out.

Source: 3DCenter

A work in progress

Subject: Motherboards | May 6, 2008 - 11:53 AM |

[H]ard|OCP's take on the 780a based ASUS M3N-HT is that it needs a bit more work before it's ready for Prime Time.  That is not to say this chipset and board do not show promise; they certainly do, but a bit more work needs to be done before this board can show off what it is capable of.  As [H] will be getting a new BIOS later today, you can be guaranteed the ASUS BIOS team is hard at work trying to solve some of the issues mentioned in their article.

Source: [H]ard|OCP

Even more motherboards

Subject: General Tech | May 6, 2008 - 11:38 AM |

Well, not so good for those vendors who are stuck with plenty of P35 and X38 boards, Intel will be introducing the 4 series at Computex.  Even worse news is that the Q45 and Q43 will be targeted directly at enterprise level customers, so resellers won't be able to sell them P35 boards as a way to try and recoup loses.  On the other hand, what DigiTimes says is great news for the enthusiast; the PCI Express bug has been fixed and these boards should offer some nice performance.

Source: Digitimes

Intel, Samsung Electronics, TSMC Reach Agreement for 450mm Wafer Manufacturing Transition

Subject: Processors | May 5, 2008 - 06:37 PM |

May 5, 2008 - Intel Corporation, Samsung Electronics and TSMC today announced they have reached agreement on the need for industry-wide collaboration to target a transition to larger, 450mm-sized wafers starting in 2012. The transition to larger wafers will enable continued growth of the semiconductor industry and helps maintain a reasonable cost structure for future integrated circuit manufacturing and applications.

I think you forgot something there

Subject: Cases and Cooling | May 5, 2008 - 06:25 PM |

The Cooler Master Real Power M850 850W PSU has a lot going for it.  It has six 12V lines, a power efficiency above 80% and produces just over 20dB of noise.  You can also got your hands on it for less that $200, which belies the quality of power it supples; which is good, and the amount of modular cabling you get.  techPowerUp has no problems recommending it, but they are confused by the same thing I am ...

Source: techPowerUp!

The year of incremental upgrades

Subject: Motherboards | May 5, 2008 - 02:57 PM |

The motherboard market has gone through some big changes in the last few quarters.  We have seen entire chipsets appear and hit end of life (officially or unofficially) for both AMD and Intel processors.  The newer chipsets do offer some new features, but the releases just haven't been as awe inspiring as even a few years ago when chipsets lived a lot longer, and the next installment had huge benefits.  The latest nVIDIA chipset is up for a preview at HEXUS, the 780a and they even have a board to show

Source: Hexus

External graphics done well

Subject: Graphics Cards | May 5, 2008 - 01:16 PM |

Ryan just finished reviewing the EVGA UV Plus+, an external graphics adaptor with a nice look and size.  It is a little box that acts as a virtual GPU, even to the point of having DDR memory on board.  It can't really handle Crysis, but it has no problems display the Vista Aero interface, so it does have at least some power inside it.  It will also support up to seven displays, making it far more handy for those users who need to have enormous amounts of screen real estate.

Weight conscious cooling

Subject: Cases and Cooling | May 5, 2008 - 12:00 PM |

Not everyone wants or needs a heatsink that stands 8" tall, or weighs two pounds.  In some systems, it is absolutely overkill, and in others there is no way a large performance heatsink could fit.  Overclocker's Club reviewed the Thermolab Micro Silencer, aimed at smaller systems or for those builders that want a cooler that can beat the Intel stock fan in performance, and do it quietly.  There isn't really any room for overclocking, but that isn't everyones first plan when they get a

Harness the power of The Fonz

Subject: General Tech | May 5, 2008 - 11:42 AM |

Wii style motion sensing may be the next big thing and an Israeli company called Prime Sense may be the ones to help push it out.  The Inquirer looks at the technology behind this, a motion sensor that can sense human motion without the need to attach anything to that human, or having them wave a stick around.  Gaming is certainly one application for this, but the company is also talking about replacing remote controls as well as getting into surveillance and

Source: The Inquirer

Do not meddle in the affairs of geeks ...

Subject: General Tech | May 2, 2008 - 05:58 PM |

One of the loudest discussions going on right now in the PC community and in our forums is about Creative.  The volume of posts caused by Creative's reaction to Daniel_K's driver mod that managed to get XiFi cards working in Vista is large, and similar.  The tone is one of indignation and a resolve to not buy Creative products, a decision made easier considering the frustration caused by the XiFi series.