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Subject: General Tech | November 30, 2007 - 12:08 PM |
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Dan, who is incapable of not asking a question once it crosses his mind and then tracking down an answer from somewhere, takes on the mystery of save games.  Why is it that some games end up with a save folder larger than the rest of the game combined, while others seem to have tiny saves that barely make a scratch on your HDD, or fit in a tiny bit of flash memory.  Why do some games load saves quicker in some areas than others, and others seem to load the same regardless.

Source: Dan's Data

February will be busy

Subject: General Tech | November 30, 2007 - 11:49 AM |
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Following yesterday's announcement that AMD's triple core processors will be available in February, nVIDIA has announced that the GeForce 9 series will also make it's appearance in the same month.  The information DigiTimes has is still pretty vague, nVIDIA is keeping this series close to their chests.

Source: Digitimes

OCZ Technology Introduces New DDR2 8GB Quad Kits for Advanced Gaming Systems and Professional Workst

Subject: Memory | November 30, 2007 - 11:15 AM |
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Sunnyvale, CA - November 29, 2007 - OCZ Technology Group, Inc., a worldwide leader in innovative ultra-high performance and high reliability memory, today announced the 8GB Platinum PC2-6400 "Quad" Kit. These high-density, optimized kits offer users the option of both high speeds and high capacities needed for their demanding gaming PC and Vista-upgraded desktops in a unique 4 x 2048MB solution.

An odd mix of features

Subject: Motherboards | November 29, 2007 - 05:13 PM |
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The Abit IX38 Quad GT has a rally strange mix of features.  It supports a 1600MHz FSB, which is fairly rare; but it partners that with DDR2, skipping any chance you have of having synchronous RAM and CPU buses.  The motherboard certainly isn't cheap, so the use of the older RAM doesn't seem to have much to do with making this the basis of a cheap system.  CPU3D put the board through

Source: CPU3D

Does this Rogue get to steal the ultimate gaming SFF title

Subject: Cases and Cooling | November 29, 2007 - 02:32 PM |
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The NZXT Rouge is supposedly the ultimate gaming SFF case, and there are some features that you might expect from a case that makes that claim that are completely missing.  The two biggest omissions would have to be the complete lack of handles, or any way of carrying the box, and the fact that even thought the case is huge for SFF, it only allows the installation of micro-ATX boards.  Nevertheless, Virtual-Hideout decided to give the case a fair trial, and found the case did have enough redeeming factors to rate a good, but not ultimate.

For those with full size cases, I recommend looking at Lee's review of the enormous Thermalright Inferno IFX-14 CPU Cooler, and it's accompanying backside cooler.

"Deciding what chassis to house your computer in these days can be an agonizing decision. The selection of computer cases on the market is simply astonishing which tells you it's a lucrative market segment and everyone wants a piece. Not to mention everybody needs some type of case for their system so just like the selection of automobiles is huge to try to fit every personality and situation, so tries the case market. However it's not every day that a product launches that simply breaks the normal segment boundaries. NZXT just launched such a product called the Rogue. It's tagline is "the ultimate gaming SFF chassis". Let's take a closer look at the specs and see just what's so different about this new case."

Here are some more Cases & Cooling reviews from around the web:

CASES & COOLING

Timing your speed just right

Subject: Memory | November 29, 2007 - 01:37 PM |
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Legit Reviews puts Corsair's TWINX Dominator Dual Channel 1800MHz DDR3 against it's self in a battle of timings.  It is rated to run with 7-7-7-20 at 1800MHz, but LR discovered that at 1333MHz, it can run at 4-4-4-12 timings.  Of course the obvious next step was to run it at those to speeds, as well as 7-7-7-20 at 1300MHz, to see what differences appear.

Revenge of the GTS

Subject: Graphics Cards | November 29, 2007 - 12:19 PM |
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The new 8800GTS, the 512MB G92 version appeared on TweakTown's doorstep, begging to be tested.  This is the second revision of the 8800GTS, released after the 8800GT that destroyed the first GTS revision in performance and especially on price.  Unfortunately you shouldn't expect this new revision to work in SLI with your original series GTS.

Source: TweakTown

Triple cores in the first half

Subject: General Tech | November 29, 2007 - 11:48 AM |
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Just in time for SAD, AMD offers another reason to isolate yourself and bathe in the glow of artificial lights, they will be releasing two Tolimans in February.  2.5GHz is a nice step up, and since it was motherboard makers that told DigiTimes the date,

Source: Digitimes

AMD Expands R&D Presence in India

Subject: General Tech | November 29, 2007 - 11:19 AM |
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BANGALORE, India - Nov. 29, 2007 - AMD (NYSE: AMD), a leading global provider of innovative processing solutions in the computing, graphics and consumer electronics markets, today announced the opening of a new silicon design and platform research and development (R&D) facility in Bangalore.

As India's role and importance in AMD's global R&D network increases, the number of employees in Bangalore continues to grow, requiring a new facility that will accommodate the current team while also providing room for future growth.

Source: AMD

Sunbeam's spreading influence

Subject: Cases and Cooling | November 28, 2007 - 02:42 PM |
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Sunbeam and Tuniq, the brand most of their PC components are sold under, is seeing it's influence grow.  With several reasonably designed cases and one of the best price/performance CPU coolers on the market, the name is become much more well know.  Now they head into the high voltage market of ultra powerful PSUs.  techPowerUp! reviews their 1200W Tuniq Ensemble, with a 140mm fan and some rather impressive claims as to it's efficiency. 

Source: techPowerUp!

AMD, uncomfortable under the spotlight

Subject: Processors | November 28, 2007 - 01:30 PM |
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You can catch Josh Walrath's take on the X2 5000+ Black Box, the last of the Athlons at PenStar Systems.  It is still a relevant chip, as desktop Phenom's aren't exactly available, and it's overclocking ability will let you build a system that you can upgrade to a Phenom when they are available, and only have to drop ~$100 on the CPU.

SuperSpeed USB 3.0 Promoter Group Enlists Contributors for First Industry-Wide Specification Review

Subject: General Tech | November 28, 2007 - 11:58 AM |
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BEAVERTON, Ore., Nov. 28, 2007 - The Universal Serial Bus (USB) 3.0 Promoter Group is looking for additional contributors to its initial draft of the group's proposed specification with a goal to have it completed by the first half of 2008.

DX10 comes to MMORPG

Subject: General Tech | November 28, 2007 - 11:56 AM |
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Hellgate London is the first MMO designed with DX10 in mind, which gives them some benefits and some problems.  While the DX9 demo showed that many cards can reach over 100+ fps in this game, we were missing out on smoke effects, motion blurring and DX10 shaders.  As [H]ard|OCP's test show, you can see the differences between the quality of DX10 and DX9, which is rather nice considering how hard you had to squint to see differences in previous titles.  On the other hand you

Source: [H]ard|OCP

Better to wish for a Red Ryder BB Gun than an 8880GT or HD3870

Subject: General Tech | November 28, 2007 - 11:42 AM |
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If you are shopping for a <$250 video card you may have found your plans frustrated.  Both the 8800GT and the HD3870 disappeared within hours of their release and there has been no sign of them at all.  The Tech Report can comment on why the AMD cards are so rare, although we still don't know what nVIDIA's problem is ... maybe retailers are snubbing them by continuing to sell GTS models?  Follow the link to see what has been holding AMD back.

X rated audio

Subject: General Tech | November 27, 2007 - 05:33 PM |
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The ASUS Xonar D2 not only sports more LEDs than your average modded case, it also handle digital and analog sounds almost totally lossless.  The Audio Station U1
will improve the quality of sound comping out of any laptop, but probably won't win the hearts of people using desktop PCs.  You can tune into Bjorn3Ds' notes to see if either of these sound like something that resonates with you.

Source: Bjorn3D

Cooling for the laptops that need it

Subject: Mobile | November 27, 2007 - 03:03 PM |
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Tiny notebooks can produce some heat with their 14.1" screens, but they are nothing compared to the larger gaming style laptops with their 17" displays and more powerful components.  Evercool's widescreen laptop cooler, called the Space Station for reasons best known to their marketers, will keep your large laptop nice and cool, although Virtual-Hideout recommends picking up Micro QuietFeet Sticky Feet to help with airflow.

ASUS Xonar Series Revolutionizes the PC Audio SoundscapeASUS Xonar Series Revolutionizes the PC Audi

Subject: General Tech | November 27, 2007 - 02:05 PM |
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FREMONT, CALIFORNIA (November 27, 2007) - Adding to the success of the company's entry into PC audio, ASUS, worldwide leader in component and notebook design and manufacturing, today extended its product offerings by introducing the world's first PCI-Express (PCI-E) interface audio card Xonar D2X; and the stylish USB based audio station Xonar U1.

Source: ASUS

The word on tera

Subject: Storage | November 27, 2007 - 01:39 PM |
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Seagate and Western Digital have both been taking enhancement products, and now they each sport a hard drive with 1000 GB of storage.  Seagate's 1TB Barracuda 7200.11 ES.2 is aimed at the desktop crowd, and sports a possibly performance enhancing 32MB cache and 4 250GB platters and will run you about 27 cents per gig.  The Western Digital takes a more responsible approach with their Green Power 1TB Caviar, the usual 16MB cache and a spin rate that varies betwe

Source: AnandTech

This midsized monitor is making it's mark

Subject: Displays | November 27, 2007 - 12:32 PM |
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LG's L204LT 20.4-inch widescreen LCD monitor seems perfect for gamers with some rather nice stats, 1680 x 1050 native resolution, 2000:1 contrast ratio and a 5ms response time.  Think Computers was rather impressed by this monitor, although they did take marks away because it doesn't come festooned with dozens of USB ports.