HP puts the Firebird 803 on my Christmas list

Subject: Systems | December 23, 2008 - 11:50 PM |
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If you were on the look out for a tiny new computer, maybe something along the lines of the ASUS Eee Box, then perhaps you should take a gander at what HP has just announced: the Firebird 803 infused with "Voodoo DNA" or something like that.  What in fact we are seeing is a tiny replica of the HP Blackbird 002 chassis infused with a small form factor PC that is has impressive specs and is damn sexy to look at. 

Source: engadget

Why you need a dual-screen notebook computer

Subject: Mobile | December 23, 2008 - 03:01 AM |
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Okay, I really can't justify this one at all, but damn if it isn't freaking cool!  Lenovo has made official plans for the W700ds notebook that includes both a 17" primary display as well as a 10.6" secondary display that slides out of the primary monitor.  I'm not making this up:

Source: engadget

Intel starts shipping 160GB X25-M SSD - your wallet cries

Subject: Storage | December 23, 2008 - 02:48 AM |
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If you thought the idea of shelling out nearly $600 for one of the impressive-looking Intel X25-M 80GB solid state drives was a holiday wish that wouldn't be met, wait until you hear the latest news: Intel has started shipping the 160GB version as well.  No official word on pricing yet, and its not actually for sale anywhere I could find, but expect to write that check for $1000+.

AMD Phenom II sold and benchmarked early

Subject: Processors | December 23, 2008 - 02:45 AM |
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A curious thread over at HardOCP seems to indicate that at least one lucky fellow was able to buy an AMD Phenom II processor a bit earlier than he was supposed to.  Luckily for you, he has posted some specifications, benchmarks and just general impressions of the product over there as well, so check it out.

Sorry for making another thread, not sure if it is the right thing to
do but anyways, here is what I have for a system to test things on.

Cooler -OCZ vendetta 2

Source: [H]ard|OCP

iMacs and Mac Minis likely to get NVIDIA chispets next month

Subject: Systems | December 23, 2008 - 02:42 AM |
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After our correct assertion that Apple would adopt the NVIDIA GeForce 9400/9300 chipsets in the newest MacBook and MacBook Pro, it seems more and more likely that NVIDIA will dig itself further into the world of Apple.  This time around it looks like the Mac Mini and the iMacs are the most likely rumored products to transition to NVIDIA-based chipsets.

Source: Ars Technica

AMD Answers Questions on Avivo Converter Issues

Subject: Graphics Cards | December 21, 2008 - 02:37 PM |
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While NVIDIA is pushing Badaboom!

Source: AMD

Do you like free stuff? Thermaltake has some for you

Subject: Cases and Cooling | December 21, 2008 - 12:16 AM |
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Do you like free stuff?  Do you want some?  Thermaltake has some things they would like to just HAND TO YOU and all you have to do in return is run through a simple survey asking such difficult questions as "Name", "Gender" and "Age".  Can you handle THAT?

New OCZ Blade Series reaches DDR3-2000 speeds

Subject: Memory | December 19, 2008 - 12:37 PM |
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OCZ sent over word that they have launched a new series of DDR3 memory modules called "Blade" that will offer DDR3 memory speeds of 2000 MHz with timings of CL 7-8-7.  The kit will come with three modules for triple channel goodness and top performance with Intel's Core i7 processors


What's this Ion thing from NVIDIA?

Subject: Graphics Cards | December 19, 2008 - 12:18 PM |
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You might have heard about this new NVIDIA technology called "Ion" - which is interesting because I hadn't.  Apparently this is NVIDIA's answer the world of netbooks and Intel's Atom processor - NVIDIA is pushing Intel's partners to push Intel to allow third party chipsets as thus allowing NVIDIA to make a push into these systems. 

New Corsair TX850W PSU gets released, reviewed

Subject: Cases and Cooling | December 19, 2008 - 12:08 PM |
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Yesterday Corsair sent out word that a new power supply with the TX branding was being announced, the TX850W.  Try and guess how many watts its rated at?  650?  No, you're fired.

The TX850W offers 850 watts of power and a dedicated 70A on a single +12V rail.  Both CrossFire and SLI are supported with four 6+2-pin PCIe cables and the unit offers more than 80% energy efficiency.

Source: [H]ard|OCP

First tests of Intel Lynnfield creep up

Subject: Processors | December 18, 2008 - 07:19 PM |
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Intel's upcoming Lynnfield core is based on the Nehalem architecture but adds in an integrated PCI Express 2.0 hub thereby officially nixing the north bridge from the world of PCs going forward.  The PCIe configuration can be setup as a single x16 connection or a pair of x8 ports for SLI and CrossFire solutions.  Lynnfield will still feature quad-cores running with HyperThreading to support eight total threads but the memory controller will be limited to dual-channel DDR3 rather than the triple-channel control we know of on the Core i7 parts. 

Source: 3DCenter

NVIDIA answers questions about notebook driver announcement

Subject: Graphics Cards | December 18, 2008 - 06:17 PM |
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Though we already posted about NVIDIA's announcement to start supporting drivers for notebook computers, I pinged NVIDIA for some more information and they provided us with the following document that provides quite a bit more information on the topic.  Read on if you have or are thinking about buying that gaming notebook.



NVIDIA Notebook Driver Release

Q:  What are you announcing today?

Laptop dream come true: NVIDIA direct drivers

Subject: Graphics Cards | December 18, 2008 - 05:42 PM |
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Long the bane of mobile gaming's existence, NVIDIA has taken the first step in allowing all users of notebook computers that want to the best possible gaming performance access to NVIDIA updated drivers.  Why is this news?  Since the beginning of time, users that wanted an updated graphics driver for their laptop had to wait for their hardware vendor to update it on its own support site.  This happened fairly infrequently and often times not at all.

VIA Trinity Platform merges Nano, VX800 and S3 graphics

Subject: Processors | December 18, 2008 - 05:26 PM |
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Today VIA is promoting a new platform of their own design with the hope of targeting budget desktop, netbook and embedded markets with an ALL-VIA solution.  Included in the mix is the VIA Nano processor, which we have discussed a few times here, the VIA VX800 chipset and S3 on-board graphics that includes DX10.1 support, HDMI output and HD content decode acceleration. 

A fancy new logo graces the platform as well:

BFG Full System Rumors Persist

Subject: Systems | December 18, 2008 - 05:09 PM |
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Kyle over at HardOCP has posted a couple of different spy shots of what looks to be a new custom-built PC and PC brand from BFG Tech.  Today, the screenshot depicts a touch screen on the front of the machine and what appears to be the optical drive slot on the TOP of the machine. 

Source: [H]ard|OCP

NVIDIA Previews the GTX 295 dual-GPU graphics card

Subject: Graphics Cards | December 18, 2008 - 05:03 PM |
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Today NVIDIA let loose some preview information for the upcoming GTX 295 graphics card - the dual-GPU 55nm GT200-based part that takes back the performance crown from AMD's Radeon HD 4870 X2. 

You can read my preview here that includes some pictures, performance numbers and analysis.

SlingPlayer Mobile for Blackberry Coming this month!

Subject: General Tech | December 18, 2008 - 12:40 AM |
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Good news for anyone with a SlingBox and a Blackberry - a public beta of the SlingPlayer Mobile will be available for download on December 30th.  Since CES in January of 2008, SlingMedia has promised a SlingPlayer for the Blackberry "this year"; looks like they will JUST BARELY be making that deadline!

Get your transcoding engines started

Subject: Graphics Cards | December 17, 2008 - 05:24 PM |
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Ryan has spent a lot of time working with the new version of Badaboom from nVIDIA, the more expensive and higher quality video transcoder to compete with AMD's offering.  It is not professional level software and can easily be used my anyone but the depth is there in the controls to get exactly what you want.  Read on to get a feel for what may be your best choice in making your videos and DVDs play on anything.

No optimization complaints for GTA IV

Subject: General Tech | December 17, 2008 - 04:03 PM |
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Neither AMD nor nVIDIA can claim favouritism
when it comes to graphical performance in GTA IV, neither card does as well as it should.  For a DX9 game that lacks antialiasing and anisotropic filtering the performance you will get from a top of the line card may disappoint you.  You can see the performance and some of the differences in graphical settings at [H]ard|OCP, not that the quality will matter too much in a high speed pursuit.

Source: [H]ard|OCP

Patch 'em if you got 'em

Subject: General Tech | December 17, 2008 - 03:30 PM |
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Regardless of whether you are into Internet Explorer or Firefox, you have some patching to do today.  Microsoft has just pushed out an emergency patch to deal with the recent highly publicized
flaw that IE7 suffers from instead of waiting until January.  As Trend Micro has identified over 10,000 sites that are actively exploiting that flaw, you might want to apply it right now.

Source: The Inquirer