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Subject: General Tech | May 28, 2013 - 06:43 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Whether you are looking for a professional level display with 99% Adobe colour gamut or a large 1440p display (sorry not quite 4k) to game on, at $850 the Dell UltraSharp U2713H 27" IPS display is a great deal. The USB 3.0 connectors are a nice touch but they do add to the size of the bezel for those with enough lucre to consider running more than one of these displays.
Dell UltraSharp U2713H 27" 2560 x 1440 IPS-panel LCD Monitor (Flagship 2013 Model)
Dell Home is offering 27-inch UltraSharp U2713H 27" 2560 x 1440 IPS-panel, LED-backlit LCD Monitor for $849.99 with FREE shipping. Use $150 instant savings to get final price.
Subject: Systems | May 28, 2013 - 06:22 PM | Tim Verry
Tagged: SFF case, SFF, passive cooling, nimbus, heastink, fanless, cpu cooler, cirrus7
German PC manufacturer Cirrus7 has launched a new small form factor (SFF) PC called the Nimbus that uses slices of aluminum that do double duty as both a case and a passive CPU cooler (heatsink).
The Nimbus PC features an Intel DQ77KB motherboard and low-power Intel processor along with configurable DDR3 and mSATA storage options. The base model will come with 4GB of DDR3 and a 60GB mSATA SSD. CPU options include the Intel G1610T, G2020T, Core i3-3220T, i3-3470T, i5-3570T, and i7-3770T. From there you can add up to two 7mm 2.5” hard drives (or SSDs) and increase the amount of RAM (for a higher price, of course).
The Intel DQ77KB board supports vPro and KVM over IP on systems with the Core i5 or higher processor. It has the following external IO options:
- 4 x USB 3.0
- 4 x USB 2.0
- 2 x Intel Gigabit LAN
- 2 x Audio jacks (green jack is dual purpose, mini-TOSLink compatible)
- 1 x HDMI
- 1 x DisplayPort
The SFF PC comes preloaded with either Ubuntu 13.04, Ubuntu 12.04, or Windows 8 (depending on your choice at checkout).
Check out more photos of the Nimbus at FanlessTech.
In order to keep the hardware cool, Cirrus7 has opted for an all-aluminum enclosure that is built around and over the motherboard in a fin-spacer-fin pattern. Each aluminum fin is 12mm high and the height of the system can be varied by adding or reducing the number of fins used. For example, using all fins allows Cirrus7 to support higher TDPs like the Core i7 3770T. Alternatively, if you are just using an i3-3220T, you could get by with a smaller (and lighter) case/heatsink. Notably, judging by the hands-on photos over at FanlessTech, the Nimbus does not use a copper CPU block which may have reduce the heatsink's effectiveness. That, or maybe Cirrus7 expects that they have slapped enough aluminum fins on the system that it doesn't matter much (heh). Also note that the case is not completely sealed, so although it is passively cooled, it is definitely not water or dust proof. Beyond that though, the case looks nice and the system would make a nice silent backup server, router, or HTPC!
The Nimbus will be available towards the end of June in Germany and Europe, with worldwide shipping available upon request. The system starts at €499 for the base model which is approximately $640 USD (before shipping). That price includes the case, processor, motherboard, RAM, and mSATA drive. Cirrus 7 has stated that Haswell-based models of the Nimbus will be available at some point, but are not expected until around the end of 2013 at the earliest.
Subject: Networking | May 28, 2013 - 03:21 PM | Tim Verry
Tagged: wi-fi, quantenna, qsr1000, mu-mimo, 802.11ac
Quantenna, has announced a new 802.11ac QSR1000 chip that is capable of delivering up to 1.7Gbps throughput. The new chip achieves the wireless throughput by supporting a combination of Multi-User MIMO, four spatial streams, 256-QAM modulation, and beamforming technology. More information on 802.11ac and the related technologies can be found here.
The Quantenna chip is a competitor to Broadcom's offerings and it is intended for use in wireless routers, access points, Set Top Boxes (STB), and other consumer electronics gear. It is the first "wave 2" (second iteration of the 802.11ac specification) 802.11ac chip, and is the fastest so far. Quantenna was able to get a theoretical max of 435.2Mbps of throughput per spatial stream, which is pretty impressive. Unfortunately, client devices (computers, smartphones, tablets, et al) will also have to support the MU-MIMO technology and have the hardware to transmit and receive multiple streams to take full advantage of the 1.7Gbps max throughput.
There is no word on which upcoming wireless devices the Quantenna chip will be used in, but the company is making the new QSR1000 chip available to manufacturers as early as Q3 of this year. Actual routers and other gear using the chip and widely available to consumers will likely not hit the market until early next year, however.
Subject: General Tech, Motherboards | May 28, 2013 - 02:58 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: Z87-GD65 GAMING, msi, z87
[May 28th, 2013/ City of Industry, California] In its 33rd year and as Asia’s largest B2B (Business to Business) computer exhibition, COMPUTEX TAIPEI 2013 is kicking off on June 4. Today, the winning list of Best Choice Award, the official award of COMPUTEX TAIPEI, is unveiled. MSI’s Z87-GD65 GAMING motherboard and Funtoro HD MOD (Media on Demand) vehicle infotainment system have proudly stood out from over 400 competitions. The only Golden Award winner in the IC & Components category, the Z87-GD65 GAMING motherboard literally sparkles in every way and proves MSI to be a true pioneer of mid-range/high-end motherboards.
The Best Choice Award has always focused on Functionality, Innovation and Market Potential as the main judging guideline. Bringing the Z87-GD65 GAMING to global gaming enthusiasts’ attention, the Best Choice Golden Award also highlights the industrial and official affirmation toward MSI’s technical innovation and design capabilities. Specifically designed for operators and passengers of long-distance coaches and high-end tour buses, the HD MOD System integrates infotainment and telematics in one pack and is clearly the top choice for multimedia entertainment on mass transportation.
Z87-GD65 GAMING, the No. 1 and Only Best Choice Golden Awarded Motherboard
The Z87-GD65 GAMING motherboard is the latest joint effort of MSI and FNATIC, the world-renowned gaming champion team. Consolidating the cutting-edge Intel 8 series chipset and Killer E2205 Game Networking, the Z87-GD65 GAMING effectively eliminates latency-induced errors and automatically prioritizes game traffic. Gamers will experience smooth gameplay even in heavily loaded networks. As for sound, the innovative Audio Boost technology significantly enhances sound clarity. To give gamers the edge in speed, the OC Genie 4 one-second overclocking technology boosts the system performance in no time.
Subject: Mobile | May 28, 2013 - 02:21 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: battery charger, Luxa2 P1 7000mAh
At just 112 x 73 x 17.1mm, the LUXA2 charger is relatively compact and is certainly easier to carry around than a collection of batteries, especially if you are an Apple user and don't have the luxury of swappable batteries. There are some drawbacks to the charger that Overclockers Club found, the 1A maximum leads to long charging times but also likely avoids any possible heat problems. The two USB charge ports mean that you can charge two devices simultaneously, something lacking in many similar chargers. If you often find yourself on the road with dead devices, this might be worth adding to your laptop bag.
”The LUXA2 P1 7000mAh High Capacity Battery & Charger is a sleek looking and solidly built piece of hardware. The silver unit I reviewed delivered exactly what it claimed, with the only casualty being the carrying pouch that did not survive normal usage. Equipped with a 7000mAh battery and two USB charging ports, it will provide multiple full charges for smaller portable devices (such as iPhones) and a decent percentage of on-screen time for more power-demanding tablets. The shape and weight of the LUXA2 P1 7000mAh High Capacity Battery & Charger makes it fit easily into any regular laptop bag without much fuss.”
Here are some more Mobile articles from around the web:
- SevenTeam X6 Power Bank @ Kitguru
- HP Pavilion Chromebook @ The Inquirer
- Mythlogic Callisto 1512 @ AnandTech
- ASUS Taichi 31 review: two sides of the story @ Hardware.info
- HP EliteBook Revolve 810 Review @ TechReviewSource
- Acer Aspire V5-431P @ Hardware.info
- AMD Kabini Mainstream APU Notebook Platform Preview @ Legit Reviews
- HP Envy TouchSmart 4 Touchscreen Ultrabook @ Tweaktown
- Sony VAIO T Series 15 Review @ TechReviewSource
- Samsung Series 3 NP300E5E-A05CA Review @ TechReviewSource
- Lenovo IdeaPad Z400 Touch Review @ TechReviewSource
- Cooler Master NotePal U2 Plus Cooling Pad Review @ Neoseeker
- Dell Latitude 10 Tablet @ FunkyKit
- Blackberry Z10 Smartphone @ FunkyKit
- BlackBerry Live 2013: BlackBerry changes course @ Hardware.info
- Our Top Android App Picks Of The Week @ eTeknix
- Kingston MobileLite Wireless: wireless card reader and more @ Hardware.info
Subject: Storage | May 28, 2013 - 01:47 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: ssd, crucial m500, mlc, marvell 9187, RAIN
Before discussing the impressive price point of Crucial's M500 drive their are two features worth mentioning about this drive, RAIN and the Marvell 9187 controller. RAIN is Redundant Array of Independent NAND which offers data parity which will allow you to successfully recreate data after an uncorrectable error, something which might put the minds of those still leery of SSDs to rest. The new Marvell controller is the secret to the pricing of this drive, it allows the usage of 128Gbit (16GB) NAND dies as opposed to the more common 64GBit dies and is produced at a lower cost than other controllers. [H]ard|OCP tested the 512GB drive and does warn that the specifications of the two smaller capacity drives are different enough to require individual testing. However as you can pick up the 512GB drive for $400 you might simply opt for the largest drive which offers competitive performance at an amazing $0.78/GB.
"Crucial's M500 offers the lowest price per gigabyte for an MLC SSD with enterprise-class features not seen on typical consumer SSD data drives. With new 128Gbit MLC NAND paired with the Marvell 9187 controller the M500 should deliver great performance at a historically low price point. Is the Crucial M500's performance up to par?"
Here are some more Storage reviews from around the web:
- 240GB OCZ Vertex 3.20 Solid State Drive @ Benchmark Reviews
- OCZ Vertex 3.20 120GB SSD Review @ Techgage
- Solidata K8 1920E SSD Review - SandForce Driven and an Amazing 2TB Capacity @ SSD Review
- OCZ Vertex 3.20 Solid State Drive @ X-bit Labs
- OCZ Vertex 3.20 240GB SATA III 2.5'' SSD Review @ Madshrimps
- OCZ Vertex 450 256GB SSD Review @ Legit Reviews
- OCZ Vertex 450 SSD @ Techspot
- OCZ Vertex 450 @ Hardware.info
- OCZ Vertex 450 SSD @ SSD Review
- OCZ Vertex 450 256GB @ Tweaktown
- SanDisk Ultra Plus 256GB SSD @ eTekinx
- Samsung SSD 840 comparison @ Hardwareoverclock
- Seagate 600 Pro SSD @ SSD Review
- Crucial M500 480GB SSD @ eTeknix
- Bang for Your Buck: Best 256GB Class SSD's under $200 @ Tweaktown
- OCZ Vertex 3.20 240GB Solid State Drive Review @ OCIA.net
- Kingston SSDNow E100 Enterprise SSD @ Tweaktown
- Mushkin Chronos GO Deluxe 1.8″ SATA 3 SSD Review ? Lightning Speeds Ultrathin Design @ SSD Review
- HGST Travelstar 7K1000 1TB 2.5" Hard Drive @ Tweaktown
- 4TB Seagate Desktop HDD ST4000DM000 @ Benchmark Reviews
- WD Se 4TB Enterprise Hard Drive Review @ Techgage
- Western Digital Scorpio Blue (WD5000LPVT) 500GB HDD @ Tweaktown
- Seagate Laptop Thin SSHD 500GB review: 2.5-inch hard disk with SSD cache @ Hardware.info
- Seagate Desktop HDD.15 4TB Hard Drive Review @ Hardware Canucks
- ADATA DashDrive Elite UE700 USB 3.0 Flash Drive @ Tweaktown
- Kingston DT Workspace 64GB 'Windows To Go' USB 3.0 Flash Drive @ Tweaktown
- Adata DashDrive Elite UE700 32GB Flash Drive Review @ Ninjalane
- Kingston HyperX Predator 512GB @ Hardware.info
- 32 32/64GB USB 3.0 memory stick test: lots of differences @ Hardware.info
- Patriot Supersonic Magnum Flash Drive @ Benchmark Reviews
- Lexar Professional 128GB Compact Flash Memory Card @ Tweaktown
- Transcend 32GB Wi-Fi SDHC @ Tweaktown
- Kingston 64GB microSDXC SDCX10/64GB @ Bjorn3D
- WD My Passport Ultra 1TB Portable Storage Drive Review @ Legit Reviews
- ADATA DashDrive Air AE400 Wireless Storage Reader and Power Bank Review @ Madshrimps
- Rosewill RDEE-12002 USB 3.0 Hard Drive Enclosure @ techPowerUp
- Corsair Voyager Air 500GB Wireless Storage Device @ Tweaktown
- Transcend StoreJet Cloud 32GB Wireless Storage Device @ Tweaktown
- Kingston MobileLite Wireless Review @ Pro-Clockers
- Synology DS213j review: deluxe entry-level NAS @ Hardware.info
- Icy Dock FlexCage MB975SP-B 5x3.5" in 3x5.25" HDD Cage Review @ Hi Tech Legion
- Shuttle OMNINAS KD20 @ techPowerUp
- iStarUSA BPU-340SATA Military Grade Drive Enclosure @ NikKTech
- LaCie CloudBox 1TB Personal NAS @ Tweaktown
Subject: General Tech | May 28, 2013 - 01:13 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: linux, mageia
If you've been looking around for a different OS for a laptop or PC that doesn't spend all of its time gaming you have probably taken a look at some of the more famous Linux distros but one may have escaped your attention. Mageia 3 has just arrived, the successor to the Mandriva project and as it offers both Gnome and KDE desktop versions you can chose the interface which you are most comfortable with. As it comes as a Live DVD you can boot to it on a current machine without having to go through the process of a full install and can leave your current OS intact. Perhaps you have a family member or friend that spends their time browsing that you support and are looking for an alternative to Microsoft or are even just looking to avoid the cost of a new license on an inexpensive mobile device; if so drop by The Inquirer for the links to download Mageia 3.
"LINUX DISTRIBUTION Mageia launched its third and latest release Mageia 3 a few days ago, and that's now available to download directly from the Mageia website and many of the well known mirrors like kernel.org and many university supported mirrors via either Bittorrent, http or ftp."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- The TR Podcast 134: Xbone, Kabini, and not quite a Titan
- Redefining the ampere with the help of graphene? @ Nanotechweb
- Investor Icahn needs a loan of $7bn to tick off Mike Dell @ The Register
- Fedora 19 Beta Released: Alive, Dead, or Neither? @ Slashdot
- ARM releases dual-core Cortex A15 hard macro for TSMC's 28nm HPM process node @ The Inquirer
- Whatever happened to Comodo Time Machine? @ Tweaktown
- MSI Gaming Notebook Event Interview With Steve Clark @ eTeknix
- Migrating to Apache 2.4 @ Hardware Secrets
- Xbox One and Playstation 4: Which Promises Will be Broken? @ hardCOREware
- Seiko SNE093P1 Solar Watch @ NikKTech
- A Stroll Down Memory Lane: Best 3dfx Glide Games @ Techspot
Subject: Storage | May 28, 2013 - 08:15 AM | Allyn Malventano
Tagged: Xe, western digital, wdc, se, RE, hdd
Today Western Digital did a slight rearranging of their enterprise product lineup:
Starting from the top down, the Xe series is essentially a SAS version of their 2.5" 10k RPM VelociRaptor form factor, available in 300GB, 600GB, and 900GB capacities. The Re series is the same 'RE' we are all familiar with, and is now available in both SAS and SATA. That bottom block, however, is something new:
The Se series is Western Digital's attempt at a lower cost Re series drive, and will be available in capacities up to 4TB.
So the Se is an Advanced Format version of the Re, designed for reduced workloads. Throughput is slightly reduced due to differences in track geometry, though WD let me know they expect final shipping Se's may be closer to the Re spec than the slide indicates. The Se carries the same RPM as well as StableTrac (where the spindle is supported at both ends), RAFF (where accelerometers compensate for chassis vibration), and TLER (where IO request timeouts are adjusted to play nicely with hardware RAID).
The key to the success of the Se will be just what sort of reduced cost Western Digital is able to price the drive at. That information, as well as a full review of an Se, will be coming later today, just as soon as our next batch of samples arrives.
Subject: Editorial | May 27, 2013 - 05:08 PM | PCPer Staff
The Dell Inspiron 15R is a good choice for anyone looking for a reasonably powerful and lightweight laptop. It is powered by a 1.8GHz Core i5-3537U, has 8GB RAM, a 1TB HDD and integral DVD burner, with a 15.6" 1366 x 768 LED-backlit LCD powered by the HD4000 on the i5. Not exactly a gaming PC but at 4.9lbs it is an easy way to bring your work with you wherever you go and have more processing power than a tablet will offer.
Dell Home is offering 3rd generation 15.6" Inspiron 15R 5521 Core i7 Ivy Bridge Laptop with 8GB RAM, 1TB Hard Drive & Touchscreen for $799.99 with FREE shipping. Use $289 instant savings and extra $100 coupon code: JS3KG6045QZ2BR to get final price.
Subject: Editorial, General Tech, Systems | May 27, 2013 - 03:08 AM | Scott Michaud
Tagged: xbox one, ps4, consolitis, consoles
So, as Wired editorial states it: hardcore console gamers don't want much, just the impossible. They want a "super-powered box" tethered to their TV; they want the blockbuster epics and innovative indie titles; they want it to "just work" for what they do. The author, Chris Kohler, wrote his column to demonstrate how this is, and has for quite some time been, highly unprofitable.
I think the bigger problem is that the console manufacturers want the impossible.
Console manufacturers have one goal: get their platform in your house and require their hand be in the pocket of everything you do with it. They need to make an attractive device for that to be true, so they give it enough power to legitimately impress the potential buyer and price it low enough to catch the purchasing impulse. Chances are this involves selling the box under cost at launch and for quite some time after.
But, if all of this juicy control locks the user into overspending in the long run, then it is worth it...
But Microsoft should be thankful that I cost them money to be acquired as a customer.
Well, looking at the Wired article, not only are console gamers ultimately overspending: it is still not enough! Consoles truly benefit no-one! The console manufacturers are not doing any more than maybe breaking even, at some point, eventually, down the line, they hope. Microsoft and Sony throw obnoxious amounts of money against one another in research, development, and marketing. Redundant technologies are formed to pit against their counterparts with billions spent in marketing to try to prove why either choice is better.
All of this money is spent to corral users into a more expensive experience where they can pocket the excess.
Going back to the editorial's claims: with all of this money bleeding out, Microsoft wants to appeal more broadly and compensate the loss with more cash flowing in. Sure, Microsoft has wanted a foothold in the living room for decades at this point, but the Xbox Division bounces between profitability and huge losses; thus, they want to be an entertainment hub if just for the cash alone.
But think back to the start, these troubles are not because it is impossible to satisfy hardcore gamers. These troubles are because Microsoft and Sony cannot generate revenue from their acquired control quicker than they can bleed capital away trying to acquire that control, or at least generate it more than just barely fast enough.
The other solution, which I have felt for quite some time is the real answer (hence why I am a PC gamer), has a large group of companies create an industry body who governs an open standard. Each company can make a substantial profit by focusing on a single chunk of the platform -- selling graphics processors, maintaining a marketplace, or what-have-you -- by leveraging the success of every other chunk.
This model does work, and it is the basis for one of humanity's most successful technology products: the internet.
As a side note: this is also why PC gaming was so successful... Microsoft, developers, Steam/GoG/other marketplaces, and hardware vendors were another version of this... albeit Microsoft had the ability to override them and go in whatever direction they wanted. They didn't, until Windows RT.
And the internet might even be the solution. The web browser is capable, today, of providing amazing gaming experiences and it does not even require a plugin. It is getting more powerful, even faster than the rate at which underlying hardware has evolved.
To end on an ironic note, that makes a web browser more capable of offline play than our current understanding of the Xbox One (and Sony has said nothing either way, for that matter).
I guess the takeaway message is: love the web browser, it "just works".
Subject: Motherboards | May 25, 2013 - 12:15 AM | Morry Teitelman
Tagged: Z87 MPOWER MAX, Z87 MPOWER, z87, msi, mpower, Intel Z87
MSI unveiled their plans for the next revision of their award winning MPOWER motherboard series. With the Z87 series of boards, MSI decided to release two different versions of the MPOWER motherboard - the Z87 MPOWER and the Z87 MPOWER MAX.
MSI Z87 MPOWER motherboard
Courtesy of MSI
MSI Z87 MPOWER MAX motherboard
Courtesy of MSI
Subject: Graphics Cards | May 24, 2013 - 06:10 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: nvidia, gtx 780, gk110, geforce
With 768 more CUDA Cores than the 680 but 384 less than the TITAN the 780 offers improvements over the previous generation and will be available for about $350 less than the TITAN. As you can see in [H]ard|OCP's testing it does outperform the 680 and 7970 but not by a huge margin which hurts the price to performance ratio and makes it more attractive for 680 owners to pick up a second card for SLI. AMD owners with previous generation cards and deep pockets might be tempted to pick up a pair of these cards as they show very good frame rating results in Ryan's review.
"NVIDIA's new GeForce GTX 780 video card has finally been unveiled. We review the GTX 780 with real world gaming with the most intense 3D games, including Metro: Last Light. If the GTX TITAN had you excited but was a bit out of your price range, the GTX 780 should hold your excitement while being a lot less expensive."
Here are some more Graphics Card articles from around the web:
- Nvidia's GeForce GTX 780 @ The Tech Report
- EVGA GTX 780 Superclocked w/ ACX Cooler 3 GB @ techPowerUp
- NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780 3GB Overclocked - Closing the gap on the GTX TITAN @ Tweaktown
- Zotac GeForce GTX 780 @ Bjorn3D
- Nvidia GeForce GTX 780 @ Bjorn3D
- The Almost Titan: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780 Review @ Techgage
- The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780 @ TechARP
- Nvidia GeForce GTX 780 3GB @ eTeknix
- GeForce GTX 780 Review: The Titan Descendant @ TechSpot
- NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780 SLI @ techPowerUp
- Gigabyte GTX 780 WindForce OC 3 GB @ techPowerUp
- Nvidia GTX 780 @ LanOC Reviews
- NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780 3 GB @ techPowerUp
- NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780 Video Card Review @Hi Tech Legion
- Nvidia GeForce GTX 780 review: Titan Light @ Hardware.info
- NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780 Review @ OCC
- NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780 3GB @ Tweaktown
- NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780 @ Hardware Canucks
- NVIDIA GEFORCE GTX 780 @ Overclockers.com
- NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780 Graphics Card @ Benchmark Reviews
- ZOTAC GeForce GTX TITAN AMP! Edition 6144 MB @ techPowerUp
- How to Install NVIDIA Drivers @ OCC
- NVIDIA GeForce Chips Comparison Table @ Hardware Secrets
- How to Install AMD Drivers Guide @ OCC
- Gallium3D Continues Improving OpenGL For Older Radeon GPUs @ Phoronix
- Sapphire HD7990 QuadFireX @ Kitguru
- MSI Radeon HD 7790 1GB OC Overclocked @ Tweaktown
- HIS 7790 iCooler Turbo 1GB GDDR5 Video Card Review @ Madshrimps
Subject: General Tech | May 24, 2013 - 05:53 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: cell phone, security, wifi, PNL
A security expert recently reminded people that the Preferred Networks List Bug which was identified in 2004 has only ever been addressed by Microsoft. All other mobile OSes, from Apple to BlackBerry can accidentally expose their PNL to an eavesdropper who can then spoof it. If you like setting up autoconnect on your devices you might want to double check the name of your active connections occasionally; if you are connected to your home WiFi while you are out you might have a problem. Catch more at The Register.
"Security expert Raul Siles has warned that years after it was first identified, the Preferred Networks List (PNL) Wi-Fi bug remains unaddressed on many an iPhone, Android phone, and Windows or BlackBerry handset."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- IT bloke publishes comprehensive maps of CALL CENTRE menu HELL @ The Register
- AMD Launches Its 2013 Mobile APU Products @ Kitguru
- AMD Temash, Kabini, Richland: new chance? @ Hardware.info
- Spam and the Byzantine Empire: How Bitcoin tech REALLY works @ The Register
- Canadian regulators welcome US Bitcoin refugees with open arms @ The Register
- Mac malware found with valid developer ID at freedom conference @ The Register
- The Best Activity Trackers for Fitness @ TechReviewSource
- Sumo Lounge Emperor @ Phoronix
- Beginners Guides: Crash Recovery & The Blue Screen of Death @ PCSTATS
- Sitecom Wi-Fi Router X6 N900 (WLR-6100) Review @ Madshrimps
- Netgear XWNB5201 500Mbps Powerline WiFi Access Point @ eTeknix
- SlimPort Summit 2013 Coverage - What is SlimPort? @ Tweaktown
- Sandberg iConheli Bluetooth Helicopter @ NikKTech
- Google Play Music Review @ TechReviewSource
- Jabra Drive Bluetooth In-Car Speakerphone Review @ ModSynergy
- Understanding Email Bounce Messages @ Hardware Secrets
- Intel Linux OpenGL Driver Leading Over Apple OS X @ Phoronix
- HGST packs 1.5TB into 9.5-mm, three-platter Travelstar 5K1500 notebook drive
- A year later: Transformer Prime @ LanOC Reviews
- Balder BD-1P T6 LED Flashlight @ 3DVelocity
- SuperSpeed RamDisk Plus 11 Software @ Tweaktown
- Removing and Wiping Drivers Guide @ OCC
- Gigabyte Shows Off Upcoming Intel Z87 Motherboards @ Legit Reviews
- Xbox One: Entertainment Hub First, Gaming Console Second -- But Could It Disrupt TV? @ TechSpot
- Xbox One - Just what is Microsoft thinking?! @ Tweaktown
- Oregon Scientific ATC9K Action Camera @ NikKTech
- SteelSeries Joint Giveaway - Three 6Gv2 Mechanical Gaming Keyboards Up For Grabs @ NikKTech
Subject: Editorial, General Tech, Graphics Cards, Systems | May 23, 2013 - 06:40 PM | Scott Michaud
Tagged: xbox one, xbox, unreal engine, ps4, playstation 4, epic games
Unreal Engine 4 was presented at the PlayStation 4 announcement conference through a new Elemental Demo. We noted how the quality seemed to have dropped in the eight months following E3 while the demo was being ported to the console hardware. The most noticeable differences were in the severely reduced particle counts and the non-existent fine lighting details; of course, Epic pumped the contrast in the PS4 version which masked the lack of complexity as if it were a stylistic choice.
Still, the demo was clearly weakened. The immediate reaction was to assume that Epic Games simply did not have enough time to optimize the demo for the hardware. That is true to some extent, but there are theoretical limits on how much performance you can push out of hardware at 100% perfect utilization.
Now that we know both the PS4 and, recently, the Xbox One: it is time to dissect more carefully.
A recent LinkedIn post from EA Executive VP and CTO, Rajat Taneja, claims that the Xbox One and PS4 are a generation ahead of highest-end PC on the market. While there are many ways to interpret that statement, in terms of raw performance that statement is not valid.
As of our current knowledge, the PlayStation 4 contains an eight core AMD "Jaguar" CPU with an AMD GPU containing 18 GCN compute units, consisting of a total of 1152 shader units. Without knowing driving frequencies, this chip should be slightly faster than the Xbox One's 768 shader units within 12 GCN compute units. The PS4 claims their system has a total theoretical 2 teraFLOPs of performance and the Xbox One would almost definitely be slightly behind that.
Back in 2011, the Samaritan Demo was created by Epic Games to persuade console manufacturers. This demo was how Epic considered the next generation of consoles to perform. They said, back in 2011, that this demo would theoretically require 2.5 teraFLOPs of performance for 30FPS at true 1080p; ultimately their demo ran on the PC with a single GTX 680, approximately 3.09 teraFLOPs.
This required performance, (again) approximately 2.5 teraFLOPs, is higher than what is theoretically possible for the consoles, which is less than 2 teraFLOPs. The PC may have more overhead than consoles, but the PS4 and Xbox One would be too slow even with zero overhead.
Now, of course, this does not account for reducing quality where it will be the least noticeable and other cheats. Developers are able to reduce particle counts and texture resolutions in barely-noticeable places; they are also able to render below 1080p or even below 720p, as was the norm for our current console generation, to save performance for more important things. Perhaps developers might even use different algorithms which achieve the same, or better, quality for less computation at the expense of more sensitivity to RAM, bandwidth, or what-have-you.
But, in the end, Epic Games did not get the ~2.5 teraFLOPs they originally hoped for when they created the Samaritan Demo. This likely explains, at least in part, why the Elemental Demo looked a little sad at Sony's press conference: it was a little FLOP.
Update, 5/24/2013: Mark Rein of Epic Games responds to the statement made by Rajat Taneja of EA. While we do not know his opinion on consoles... we know his opinion on EA's opinion:
— Mark Rein (@MarkRein) May 23, 2013
Subject: General Tech | May 23, 2013 - 01:00 PM | Ken Addison
Tagged: z87, Y500, xbox one, xbox, video, Temash, Richland, podcast, pcper, msi, Lenovo, Kaveri, Kabini, Jaguar, Intel, hgst, gtx 650m, Giagbyte, ECS, asus, APU, amd
PC Perspective Podcast #252 - 05/23/2013
Join us this week as we discuss Z87 Motherboards, Xbox One, Lenovo Y500 Gaming notebook 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, Josh Walrath, Allyn Malventano, and Morry Teitelman
Program length: 1:17:01
Week in Review:
News items of interest:
1:04:30 Hardware/Software Picks of the Week:
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Subject: Editorial, Graphics Cards | May 23, 2013 - 12:08 PM | Ryan Shrout
Tagged: video, live, gtx 780, gk110
Missed the LIVE stream? You can catch the video reply of it below!
Hopefully by now you have read over our review of the new NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780 graphics card that launched this morning. Taking the GK110 GPU, cutting off some more cores, and setting a price point of $650 will definitely create some interesting discussion.
Join me today at 2pm ET / 11am PT as we discuss the GTX 780, our review and take your questions. You can leave them in the comments below, no registration required.
Subject: General Tech | May 23, 2013 - 12:03 PM | PCPer Staff
SSD deals just keep getting better and today's is no exception. You can pick up a 500GB version of the Samsung 840 series SSD, powered by TLC NAND memory, for just $277.49!
You can read over Allyn's original review of this product if you'd like or just click the link below to get the offer before it runs out!
Subject: Displays | May 23, 2013 - 01:08 AM | Tim Verry
Tagged: quad hd, philips, epi, 2560x1440, 2560x1080, 21:9
Envision Peripherals Inc. (EPI), a company that sells Philips monitors in North America recently announced three new high resolution IPS desktop monitors. The company is releasing one 29” 21:9 monitor for consumers and two high resolution displays for professionals.
Philips Brilliance 29” UltraWide Monitor
This Philips monitor is of the 21:9 variety and offers up a resolution of 2560 x 1080 on its AH IPS display. The monitor features a narrow bezel, built-in speakers, and comes bundled with SmartControl software to adjest settings via a PC software application.
It has DL-DVI, DisplayPort, HDMI, and (optional) Thunderbolt video inputs. It supports MultiView technology, which allows the monitor to accept multiple video inputs and display them simultaneously on the screen.
The Philips Brilliance 29” UltraWide display is available now at online retailers like Amazon. While it has an MSRP of $599 according to the press release, Amazon is actually charging $667.90 for the monitor currently.
While the Brilliance 29” UltraWide is aimed at consumers, the following two monitors are intended for professionals doing CAD, finance, and art/design work.
P-Line 29” UltraWide Monitor
The P-Line 29” UltraWide is a 21:9 monitor for professionals. It features a 2560 x 1080 resolution AH IPS display with MultiView technology and a “ultra narrow” bezel. EPI claims that the display has both a 178-degree vertical and horizontal viewing angles. There are four USB 3.0 port as well as a height-adjustable stand.
Video inputs include DisplayPort 1.2a ports that allow daisy chaining monitors. The MultiView technology also allows the display to show two display inputs simultaneously.
The monitor is available now to business customers from resellers like CDW for $699.
P-Line 27” Quad HD Monitor
Finally, the P-line 27” Quad HD monitor is the final new professional series display. It has the highest resolution at 2560 x 1440 (109 PPI). This IPS display supports 8-bit color and has a professional price to match. The monitor itself has a height-adjustable stand, built-in speakers, a 2MP webcam with microphone, USB 3.0 ports, and a PowerSensor which detects when the user leaves the computer and automatically dims the display. EPI claims that the PowerSensor results in up to 80% power savings. It would be useful for businesses, though less crucial for home users.
Like the P-line 29” UltraWide, this monitor can daisy chain other monitors to the PC video output via DisplayPort connectors. Video inputs include DL-DVI, DisplayPort, HDMI, and Thunderbolt.
It is available now from resellers with an MSRP of $799.
You can find the full press release below.
Subject: General Tech | May 22, 2013 - 10:33 PM | Tim Verry
Tagged: xbox one, semi-custom business unit, ps4, microsoft, amd
Microsoft took the wraps off of its upcoming Xbox One console earlier this week, and it is now possible to compare Microsoft and Sony's next-generation hardware.
Prior to the Xbox One launch, Forbes contributor Paul Tassi postulated that Microsoft would be going a different route than Sony with its next Xbox. Specifically, that Microsoft would focus more on media playback and applications rather than purely gaming (unlike Sony, which is doing the opposite). At the time, I found myself agreeing with his sentiment, and now that the console as launched I believe Mr. Tassi was absolutely correct. Microsoft wants the Xbox One to be the center of your living room and the device you use for all of your media (and gaming) needs. The new console integrates the Windows kernel and can do multitasking of applications and media in a Metro-UI like fashion (2/3, 1/3 split screen).
On the other hand, Sony is positioning its console as the best gaming device for the living room, and is focusing on integrating all things gaming with media as more of an afterthought. Like previous PlayStation consoles, it will likely play back media files and Blu-ray movies just fine, but it is a gaming box at its core.
Interestingly, the hardware that both companies have chosen seems to line up nicely with those goals. Both the Xbox One and PS4 are based around a semi-custom AMD APU with eight Jaguar CPU cores, but they have gone in different directions from there.
PlayStation 4 hardware:
As a refresher, Sony's PS4 has the following hardware specifications.
- CPU: Eight core AMD “Jaguar” CPU
- GPU: AMD GCN GPU with 1152 shader units (in 18 CUs)
- Memory: 8GB of GDDR5 clocked at 5500MHz
- HDD: At least a spindle hard drive
- Bandwidth: 176 GB/s
Sony has changed directions from the PS3 by going with a simpler design that provides more graphical horsepower and higher system memory bandwidth versus the Xbox One. The PS4 uses a semi-custom AMD chip that has saved Sony a great deal of R&D money while also being easier for developers as it is that much closer to a traditional PC with its x86-64 APU (GDDR5 memory is unusual though). The PS4 is aimed at gamers and Sony's choice of hardware and memory reflects that.
Xbox One hardware:
Microsoft was not as forthcoming as Sony as far as touting specific hardware specifications, but based on the announcement and additional information acquired by AnandTech, the Xbox One features the following hardware:
- CPU: Eight core AMD “Jaguar” CPU
- GPU: AMD GCN GPU with 768 shader cores (within 12 Compute Units)
- Memory: 8GB of DDR3 system memory at 2133MHz as well as 32MB of on-chip eSRAM
- HDD: 500GB
- DDR3 Memory Bandwidth: 68.3 GB/s
- eSRAM Memory Bandwidth: 102GB/s
Microsoft took a different approach with the Xbox One. Instead of going for DDR5 like Sony did, Microsoft opted for a hybrid approach that uses a small but high-bandwidth and low latency embedded SRAM on the same chip as the CPU and GPU paired with a larger 8GB of traditional PC DDR3 system memory. This approach is interesting because it gives Microsoft a system that has access to low latency memory at the expense of the higher bandwidth that the PS4 enjoys with its single pool of DDR5 memory. Developers will need to become familiar with the embedded RAM to take full advantage of the latency benefits, however.
These hardware choices work out such that the PS4 has a distinct advantage when it comes to gaming performance. It has more GPU horsepower and high-bandwidth memory for feeding the processor high resolution textures. On the other hand, while Microsoft's console still has a respectable GPU (for a console), it seems to be optimized for lower latency memory access and just enough graphics oomph to enable the company to have a multimedia and home entertainment machine that can run multiple applications simultaneously while also satisfying gamers by giving them a decent graphical upgrade over the Xbox 360 for games.
This next generation of consoles should be interesting, as will the ensuing "flame wars" between fans. Both Microsoft and Sony have learned from the past (current) generation of consoles and are focusing on what they are good at to differentiate themselves. Microsoft is tapping into its Windows ecosystem of PCs and mobile devices and providing an app machine that the company hopes will be the hub of your living room entertainment needs. Sony, who does not have that expertise or existing infrastructure is also focusing in on what it excels at and that is gaming.
I'm looking forward to seeing how the consoles co-exist and how the market shakes out over 2014 and into the future as the hardware stays the same but software changes. Sony definitely has the hardware advantage to stay in the game longer when it comes to games and graphics, but Microsoft has a box that can do more than games and can find purchase in your media rack even after it is surpassed in gaming graphics quality by PCs and the competition.
What do you think about the split between the Xbox One and PS4's hardware?
Subject: Mobile | May 22, 2013 - 07:46 PM | Tim Verry
Tagged: Tegra 4i, software defined radio, SoC, nvidia, i500, 4g lte
NVIDIA's Tegra 4i System on a Chip includes a software defined radio that works as a LTE modem. This i500 LTE modem uses general purpose deep execution processors (DXP) and is as much as 40% smaller than a hardware LTE modem according to the company.
At Mobile World Congress earlier this year, the modem was able to reach 100Mbps throughput. After a recent software update, the Tegra 4i SoC in NVIDIA's Pheonix reference platform achieved 150Mbps throughput in a demo at CITA 2013 in Los Angeles this week.
The reference phone was connected to a test network during the demo rather than a live cellular network. The cellular network test equiptment showed the Pheonix platform was connected at the full 150Mbps link speed. In addition to this, NVIDIA showed the Tegra 4i-powered Pheonix phone connected to a live AT&T LTE network streaming video and making voice calls.
The interesting bit about the i500 modem in the Tegra 4i is its software defined nature. NVIDIA was able to upgrade the modem's capabilites through software rather than needing to redesign the hardware. This would be a big plus to consumers as they would be able to take advantage of the faster network speeds as they become available without needing to replace their phones. NVIDIA did note that in addition to the LTE Cat 4 support, the i500 is also backwards compatible with LTE Cat 3, 3G, and 2G networks. I'm interested to see what the power consumption of thei500 is like compared to LTE modems implemented in specialized hardware. The i500 is smaller and more flexible, but SDR can use more power due to its general purpose hardware units.
Read more about NVIDIA's Tegra 4i SoC at PC Perspective!