Author:
Manufacturer: Corsair

Introduction, Features, Technical Specifications

Introduction

corsairh100.jpg

Courtesy of Corsair

Corsair expanded their product line exponentially in 2011 by adding a variety of PC components like mechanical keyboards, gaming mice, performance CPU coolers, desktop and headset sound systems, solid state drives, and their trademark system memory modules. One of the truest innovations we saw from Corsair this year was their self-contained watercooling units. Corsair developed the H100 to be their flagship CPU cooler that uses a dual-radiator configuration to bring enthusiasts an efficient and responsive cooling solution.

 

h100_fanconnectors.png

Courtesy of Corsair

The Corsair H100 debuted in June 2011 and is the only self-contained watercooling unit on the market that sports a massive 240mm radiator and digital fan control buttons to adjust the CPU cooler for quiet, performance, and balanced modes. This CPU cooler retails for around $119 before shipping at most vendors, but many enthusiasts wonder how it stacks up against other comparable options from Corsair, Antec, and Thermaltake. Personally, I would also like to see what performance differences I will see using the H100 against a few of the top air-cooled heatsinks I have in our office.

Continue reading our review of the Corsair Hydro Series H100 CPU Cooler!!

Author:
Manufacturer: Corsair

Corsair Carbide Series

Corsair's successful entry into the case world has taken quite a few people by surprise including consumers and many competitors in the case market.  With the first Corsair Obsidian series, the 800D, Corsair standardized many features that were only seen in much more niche products like cable routing openings on the motherboard tray and fan filters.  Since that release in September of 2009 we have seen the 600T in the Graphite series as well as the 700D and 650D added to the Obsidian. 

When Corsair showed us the first versions of the Carbide series in Taiwan during Computex 2011, it was finally addressing the primary complaint that many had about its cases: price.  The Carbide 500R can be found today for about $139 and the 400R for under $100.  

both.jpg

The Corsair Carbide 400R (left) and 500R White (right)

Check out our video review of the pair of Carbide cases below!

You can find the Corsair Carbide cases for sale directly on the Corsair.com website or at Newegg.com:

My preference would be to get the 400R model with the noticeable price difference (relatively speaking) as it offers nearly identical performance and features, minus the larger side fan, very basic fan controller and removable drive cages.  Both are top notch designs for the low-cost gamer though and earn our PC Perspective Gold Award!

PCPerGoldPNG-300.png

Manufacturer: Seasonic

Introduction and Features

Seasonic has a well earned reputation for producing some of the best PC power supplies on the planet. Over the years, Seasonic has been the OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) of choice for companies like Corsair, PC Power & Cooling, and XFX to name just a few. But Seasonic also markets power supplies under their own brand name. The new Platinum-860 and Platinum-1000 are Seasonic's newest and most advanced PSUs to date and the Platinum-1000 is their first 1kW unit. Both power supplies are based on Seasonic's X Series line, which has brought several major advancements to the standard PC power supply platform since its introduction two years ago.

• Proprietary circuit design delivers High efficiency (80Plus Gold or Platinum certified)
• Full modular DC Connector Module features integrated VRMs (3.3V and 5V)
• Hybrid Silent Fan Control (3 modes of operation: Fanless, Silent and Cooling)
• High-quality Sanyo Denki San Ace dual ball bearing fan with PWM
• High-reliability 105°C grade A capacitors and solid polymer capacitors

2-Pt-1000-1.jpg

Continue reading our review of the Seasonic Platinum 80 Plus 1000W Power Supply!!

Manufacturer: Corsair

Introduction and Features

Corsair Memory continues to expand their PC power supply offering with the introduction of four new modular power supplies in their Enthusiast Series; the TX550M, TX650M, TX750M and TX850M. Corsair designed all of the new modular power supplies to deliver clean, stable, continuous power at an affordable price for PC gamers and performance enthusiasts. All of the Enthusiast Series TX Modular power supplies feature an energy-efficient design (80Plus Bronze certified), quiet operation and are backed by a 5-year warranty with lifetime access to Corsair's comprehensive technical support and customer service.

2-TX-ModularPSUs.jpg

Here is what Corsair has to say about their new Enthusiast Series TX Modular PSUs:
"Corsair Enthusiast Series power supply units are designed for hardcore PC gamers, performance enthusiasts, and anybody who appreciates a combination of high performance standards and affordability. Enthusiast Series PSUs are 80 Plus Bronze certified, and are available in both modular and non-modular configurations.

Based on the award-winning Enthusiast Series TX V2 line, Enthusiast Series Modular PSUs add a modular cabling system for improved installation flexibility. It provides a great combination of exacting performance standards and affordability. "

Continue reading our review of the Corsair TX550M and TX750M Power Supply!!

Author:
Manufacturer: Antec

The Eleven Hundred Case from Antec

Antec has been making a fairly strong push back into the enthusiast market as of late by sponsoring specific gaming events like Blizzcon and by preparing and releasing new products in the company's very popular lines of chassis.  We have already taken a look at the Antec P280 case and in truth the Eleven Hundred we are looking at today is VERY similar to it.  It is constructed on the same base chassis but has some interesting changes on the doors, the front panel and cooling options.

Even more than just new products, Antec as a company is moving in the right direction internally, addressing customer complaints and re-focusing the company to its core demographics.  Company representative Jessie Lawrence actually sat down with me for an interview (our first edition of The Inside Perspective) last month where talked about new products and how Antec could improve its product line to gain the attention of the enthusiast crowd again.  Based on that discussion it would seem that Antec is aiming to be one of the leaders in cases again.

Today we are looking the beginnings of this promise, the Antec Eleven Hundred.  While the P280 was built towards a user that wants a particularly quiet computing experience, the Eleven Hundred finds itself targeted at performance users; those of us that want more fans, more cooling.  With a retail price of about $120, the Eleven Hundred should find its way into quite a few gaming PCs. 

Look below for our video review of the new case and keep reading for a collection of photos and more input on the design!!

I think the new Antec Eleven Hundred will be exactly the case that a lot of our readers want to see.  While not officially a full tower case, with support for 13-in graphics cards and XL-ATX motherboards, there won't be many people that don't find enough room in this design.  The inclusion of the grommetted routing openings and the HUGE CPU back plane hole are definitely great features to find their way to the Antec lineup.  Things like USB 3.0 front panel connections, dedicated 2.5-in drive bays and the eight (8!!) available 120mm fan location really round out the Eleven Hundred.  

Personally, I still find the mix of performance and quiet design features on the P280 more appealing, though that will depend on your system goals and individual preferences. 

PCPerSilverPNG-300.png

Continue reading our review of the Antec Eleven Hundred gaming case!!

Manufacturer: OCZ Technology

Introduction and Features

OCZ recently introduced the ZS Series power supplies, which are targeted towards value-oriented gaming systems. The ZS Series complements OCZ's High Performance and Max Performance power supplies and provides an affordable entry point for PC enthusiasts on a budget who still want good efficiency along with NVIDIA SLI or ATI CrossFire support.

2-PSU-Selector-table.jpg

 The new ZS-Series currently includes three different power supplies ranging in output capacity from 550W up to 750W. The ZS-750 we have up for review today features 750W of continuous output power, is 80 Plus Bronze certified and incorporates all hard-wired cables with four PCI-E connectors. The OCZ ZS Series 750W PSU is currently selling for $84.99 USD (October 2011).

3-zs_box.jpg

Continue reading our review of the OCZ ZS Series 750 watt power supply!

Author:
Manufacturer: Thermaltake

Introduction, Features, Technical Specifications

Introduction

icon1.jpg

Courtesy of Thermaltake

Performance CPU coolers have been saturating the market in bunches this year, and Thermaltake added the FrioOCK to the fray to compete against other high-end heatsinks geared toward overclockers and power PC users. We wasted no time installing the FrioOCK in our LGA 1155 teset bench to see how it stacks up against other extreme air-cooled CPU coolers!

icon2.jpg

Courtesy of Thermaltake

The FrioOCK is a universal CPU cooler that supports a variety of socket types from Intel (LGA1366, LGA1155, LGA1156, and LGA775) and AMD (AM3, AM2+, AM2). This heatsink uses a dual-tower design with six copper heatpipes to dissipate heat from the processor. The unit also sports two 130mm fans in a push-pull configuration to wisk heat away from the CPU.

Read the entire review of the Thermaltake FrioOCK Universal CPU Cooler!

Author:
Manufacturer: Antec

Welcome to The Inside Perspective

Welcome!  The Inside Perspective is a new series on PC Perspective that will take you further behind the scenes of the industry than we typically go, with interviews of industry personnel.  I hope you find these discussions to be both informative as well as eye opening into the world behind the reviews, behind the press releases and the marketing speak that everyone sees on a daily basis.  http://pcper.com/tip

 

The Inside Perspective 001 - Antec's Jessie Lawrence

Antec was at one time the leader in enthusiast and gamer case design and much of what the company built years ago, like the P180 series, has endured years of modifications to remain relevant and these chassis remain some of the favorites of our staff.  However, in the past several years, the case world has seen new entrants, new designs and new feature sets that Antec has been slow to adopt and as such they have fallen out of the leaders position in the mind-set of enthusiasts, even if they haven't in sales in revenue.

tip_antec.png

With the release of the new P280 and Eleven Hundred cases though (the former of which we have already reviewed) Antec is hoping to make a resurgence into the enthusiast market.  And while I definitely was impressed with the P280 there is still some work to do and, luckily, Antec knows it and is moving forward in the right direction. 

Recently, Antec's Communications Manager Jessie Lawrence stopped by the office and we sat down for a small interview to ask him about the new case designs, what he likes about working in this cut throat industry and how Antec plans to stem the tides against the competition.

 

While we are getting The Inside Perspective started, we are including it in our PC Perspective Podcast RSS feed.  Also, the video version which we would encourage you to check out can be seen below, embedded via YouTube.  You can be sure to find all of our episodes of The Inside Perspective at http://pcper.com/tip

  • iTunes - Subscribe to the podcast directly through the iTunes Store
  • RSS - Subscribe through your regular RSS reader
  • MP3 - Direct download link to the MP3 file
  • Video - See YouTube embed below (RSS to come soon!)

Host: Ryan Shrout

Guest: Jessie Lawrence, Antec

Program Length: 13:49

Program Schedule:

  1. 01:08 Introduction
  2. 02:15 Questions about new P280 and Eleven Hundred Cases
  3. 04:40 Target audience for each new case
  4. 05:50 Background with Jessie Lawrence
  5. 09:20 Memorable moments in the industry
  6. 11:20 How can Antec return to enthusiast roots?
  7. 13:45 Conclusion

Author:
Manufacturer: Antec

Antec pushes forward

Sometimes, when you right something correctly the first time, it still fits:

Antec is one of the most storied brands when it comes to enthusiast class components like cases and power supplies.  Unfortunately, the whims of the gamer change on a breeze as most will swap between company allegiances whenever the performance or features dictate.  Antec has fallen into this trap over the last few years as many in the community moved on from the likes of the ever-present P180 to newer and more innovative designs from other companies.  Having realized this internally and making moves to take care of that slide, Antec is going to start producing some modern cases with improved specifications.

I wrote those words as the introduction to our Antec SOLO II review and they still stand true.  The SOLO II was a good case for its small size but the new Antec P280 attempts to reenergize the excitement around the Performance One series of cases, well known for the P180/190 lineage.  The P280 continues with specific features like the 270 degree swinging door and sound dampening material but does it offer up enough additional features to catch the competition that has passed Antec? 

Check out our video review below and continue reading if you want to see a collection of still photos and our final thoughts!

Overall, I think the new Antec P280 is a great case for the price, coming in at $139 (and likely lower) at launch.  The case offers what I would now call "staple" features like the grommeted cable routing openings around the motherboard and a large CPU cooler installation opening while keeping what made the Performance One series of cases great including sound dampening material on the front door and side panels and the classic swinging door.  Extras like the dedicated 2.5-in drive bays, rubber feet for the standard 3.5-in HDDs, 9 expansion slots and the side access fan filter for the power supply really show that Antec is moving in the right direction again. 

PCPerGoldPNG-300.png

Continue reading our Antec P280 review for photos and commentary!!

Manufacturer: Thermaltake

Introduction and Features

It's been awhile since we reviewed our last Thermaltake power supply so we were excited to see a new Toughpower Grand unit show up on our doorstep recently. Thermatake's new Grand series includes five models ranging from 650W up to 1200W. All of the Toughpower Grand series power supplies feature advanced circuitry design, high efficiency (80 Plus Gold certified), smart cable management, and come backed by Thermaltake's 7-year warranty.

2-TTG-1200-diag.jpg

Here is what Thermaltake has to say about their new Toughpower Grand Series: "Designed to meet the highest expectations and standards of today's extreme PC enthusiasts and system builders while pushing the limit of clean and reliable power delivery system utilizing advanced circuitry design that can only be found on Toughpower Grand series of high-efficiency power supplies. Smart cable management not only enables professional-looking system builds, but also accelerates airflow through the computer case for highly efficient heat dissipation. All of the above are achieved while enabling the Toughpower Grand power supply to deliver continuous power output even when operating in 50C environment, making it the Toughest power supply on the block."

Continue reading our review of the Thermaltake Toughpower Grand 1200 watt PSU!!

Introduction and Features

SilverStone has a well earned reputation among PC enthusiasts for providing a full line of high quality enclosures, power supplies, cooling components, and accessories. Their Strider Gold series, which includes four models ranging from 750W up to 1,200W, was designed to meet the needs of professional users and enthusiasts alike. The Strider Gold ST1200-G that we have up for review today is rated for 1200W DC output and is 80 Plus Gold certified. It comes with a full compliment of all modular cables, including dual EPS connectors and eight PCI-E connectors for multiple high-end graphics adapter support. High efficiency also means less waste heat, which should result in lower operating temperatures and less fan noise.

1-Banner.jpg

Here is what SilverStone has to say about their new Strider Gold 1200W power supply:

To meet the ever higher requirements imbued by professional users and enthusiasts alike, SilverStone created the Strider Gold series power supplies. The Strider Gold models are built on a similar platform as the award-winning Strider Plus series but with even higher efficiency ratings.

The Strider Gold series will encompass wattage range from 750W to 1200W for a great variety of applications. In addition to 80 Plus Gold level efficiency, all models are built to meet very high standards in electrical performance so they have ±3% voltage regulation, low ripple and noise and high amperage single +12V rail. Other notable features also included are 24/7 40°C continuous output capacity, Japanese capacitors, low-noise 135mm fan, and multiple sets of PCI-E cables. For users looking for a power supply with a faultless combination of performance, efficiency, and quality, there is no need to look beyond the Strider Gold series.

2-ST1200-G.jpg

Continue reading our review of the SilverStone Strider Gold 1200W Power Supply!!

Manufacturer: Corsair

Introduction and Features

It's always an exciting day when a new Corsair power supply shows up at the PCPerspective test lab and today we have a brand new HX1050 PSU to test out. Corsair continues to bring a full line of high quality power supplies, memory components, cases, cooling components, SSDs and accessories to market for the PC enthusiast and professional alike. Corsair's Professional Series power supplies now include four models; the HX650, HX750, HX850 and HX1050. All of the power supplies in the Professional Series feature premium quality components, an energy-efficient design (80 Plus Silver certified) and quiet operation; and they are backed by a 7-year warranty and lifetime access to Corsair's comprehensive technical support and customer service.

2-HX1050.jpg

Here is what Corsair has to say about their Professional Series PSUs:
"Corsair Professional Series power supplies are designed for enthusiasts and gamers who demand high performance, high efficiency, the flexibility of modular cables, and unflinching reliability. Designed and engineered using cutting-edge technology, each Corsair Professional Series power supply is built to the highest quality standards and delivers the features and performance that technology enthusiasts demand.

Corsair Professional Series power supplies are built using Industrial Grade electrical components, ensuring the stable, clean and reliable voltages that are essential for high-end gaming PCs and workstations. Professional Series PSUs are rigorously tested at 100% load and an ambient temperature of 50°C, guaranteeing stability and reliability even in the most demanding multi-core, multi-graphics card systems.

The Corsair Professional Series HX1050 PSU utilizes advanced DC-to-DC circuitry, and exceeds the requirements for 80 Plus Silver certification standards, for up to 88% energy-efficiency. This reduces wasted energy, reducing energy bills, and lowers the amount of excess heat generated, allowing the cooling fan to spin more slowly and quietly.

Corsair Professional Series power supplies boast an innovative semi-modular cabling configuration that uses low-profile, flat modular cables, which reduce air friction to help maximize airflow through the computer chassis. The modular design also simplifies installation as it allows unprecedented flexibility in utilizing only those cables which are needed. Corsair Professional Series is backed by and industry-leading 7-year warranty and comprehensive customer support. "

Continue reading our review of the Corsair HX1050 power supply!!

Author:
Manufacturer: PC Perspective

The Basics

Introduction

If you have been visiting PC Perspective at all over the last week there is no doubt you have seen a lot of discussion about the currently running Battlefield 3 beta.  We posted an article looking at performance of several different GPUs in the game and then followed it up with a look at older cards like the GeForce 9800 GT.  We did a live stream of some PC Perspective staff playing BF3 with readers and fans, showed off and tested the locked Caspian Border map and even looked at multi-GPU scaling performance.  It was a lot of testing and a lot of time, but now that we have completed it, we are ready to summarize our findings in a piece that many have been clamoring for - a Battlefield 3 system build guide.

05.jpg

The purpose of this article is simple: gather our many hours or testing and research and present the results in a way that simply says "here is the hardware we recommend."  It is a the exact same philosophy that makes our PC Perspective Hardware Leaderboard so successful as it gives the reader all the information they need, all in one place.

Continue reading our guide for building a system for Battlefield 3!!

Author:
Manufacturer: Antec

Antec SOLO II Chassis Review

Antec is one of the most storied brands when it comes to enthusiast class components like cases and power supplies.  Unfortunately, the whims of the gamer change on a breeze as most will swap between company allegiances whenever the performance or features dictate.  Antec has fallen into this trap over the last few years as many in the community moved on from the likes of the ever-present P180 to newer and more innovative designs from other companies.  Having realized this internally and making moves to take care of that slide, Antec is going to start producing some modern cases with improved specifications.

First up on the list is the SOLO II, part of the Antec Sonata line of "Quiet Computing" products.  The original SOLO was released in early 2006 and since then much has changed in the world of chassis for gamers and those more interested in noise reduction.  Antec is hoping that the SOLO II will actually address a large portion of BOTH crowds with its small footprint, many noise-deleting features and several enthusiast-class nods included.

Check out our video review of the SOLO II and keep reading for some images of the newest Antec chassis!

Manufacturer: Kingwin

Introduction and Features

Kingwin just released their first fanless power supply, the Stryker Fanless 500W, which is rated for 500W and can be easily overclocked to 600W output with only a slight drop in efficiency. That makes the Stryker STR-500 one of the highest output fanless power supplies on the market today. And the Kingwin Stryker 500W Fanless power supply is certified 80 Plus Platinum with up to 92% efficiency. High efficiency is always good but it is critical for a fanless power supply to help minimize waste heat. Combine that with a good combination of fixed and modular cables and a 5-year warranty and we have a very interesting new product to review!

1-Stryker-Banner-500W.jpg

Kingwin has impressed us recently with several of their new power supplies, most notably the LZP-550W that we reviewed earlier this year, which won an Editor's Choice award. In addition to the new Stryker fanless PSU, Kingwin offers a complete lineup of PC power supplies ranging across seven categories along with PC chassis, external enclosures, docking stations, cooling systems, and accessories.

Continue reading the Kingwin Stryker 500W Fanless Power Supply Review!!

Author:
Manufacturer: NZXT

Introduction and Features

Introduction

tempest1.jpg

Courtesy of NZXT

NZXT added two mid-tower case offerings to its Tempest series today that feature custom solutions for dual-radiator watercooling systems and dual "touch-powered" 120mm front fans with removable filters. The Tempest 410 and Tempest 410 Elite are available for $79.99 and $89.99. Today, we are kicking the tires on the Tempest 410 Elite to ensure enthusiasts and overclockers get the most bang for their buck for their next mid-tower case upgrade.

tempest2.jpg

Courtesy of NZXT

Both Tempest 410 and Tempest 410 Elite cases incorporate a honeycomb mesh design to the front, top, and back panels and advanced cable management systems for concealing loose wires and power cords. The Tempest 410 Elite ups the ante with an acrylic side panel to see all the hardware inside the chassis.

Continue reading our review of the NZXT Tempest 410 Elite Mid-Tower Case!!

Manufacturer: Antec

Introduction and Features

Are you looking to put gaming-class power into your next build while working within a specific budget? Antec developed the High Current Gamer line for people who play games, for people who love games and spend countless hours gaming. The HCG series was designed to deliver the right balance between performance and high reliability at an affordable price.

Antec has one of the largest selections of PC power supplies on the market today and their High Current Gamer series offers five different power supply units ranging in output capacity from 400W up to 900W. The HCG-750 features 750W of continuous output power, is 80 Plus Bronze certified and incorporates all hard-wired cables with four PCI-E connectors, NVIDIA SLI-Ready and ATI CrossFire certification and typically sells for $100 USD.

1-HCG750_Q.jpg

Continue reading our full review of the Antec High Current Gamer 750 watt PSU!

Author:
Manufacturer: Corsair

The Obsidian Series gets a little brother

Corsair has had a good run as of late with a host of new products that fall WELL outside the original memory vendor stereotype.  I mean, seriously?  We have had cases like the Obsidian 800D, power supplies like the HX1000W, headphones and speakers like the HS1A and the SP2500 and of course the water coolers in the vein of the H50.  The list goes on but Corsair has obviously done a tremendous job of expanding a roadmap to stay relevant and among the most cutting edge enthusiast companies on the map.

650d-1.png
 

Images from Newegg.com

Today we are going to take a look at the Corsair Obsidian Series 650D chassis, a case that follows in the footsteps of the popular (but expensive) 800D and 700D options but lowers the price, and the height, quite a bit.  

Read on for the full video review...

Manufacturer: Kingwin
Tagged: PSU, Kingwin

Introduction and Features

The Kingwin LZP-550 PSU is one of the first 80PLUS Platinum certified power supplies to hit the market. And high efficiency isn't the LZP-550's only claim to fame. Check out our review to see why it earned an Editor's Choice award.Introduction
        

           
Kingwin has just released their first Lazer Platinum Series power supply, the LZP-550, which is one of the first 80PLUS Platinum certified PC power supplies on the market.  The LZP-550 PSU is rated for 550W output and can be easily overclocked to 650W output with only a slight drop in efficiency.  Kingwin's new power supply comes with a full compliment of fixed and modular cables, a quiet 140mm fan that doesn't even turn on until the load heats up, and includes universal AC input with Active PFC.  It is designed to support the latest Intel and AMD processors along with multiple high-end graphic adapters.  And last but not least, Kingwin has extended their traditional 3-year warranty to five years; now we're talking.

Manufacturer: Corsair Components
Tagged:

Introduction and Features

Today we have a double-header for you: two new PSUs in Corsair's Enthusiast lineup, the TX750 V2 and TX850 V2. Check out our review to see if these new contenders are destined for the PSU hall of fame and your next build!

Introduction

Corsair Memory continues to expand their PC power supply offering with the introduction of three new units in their Enthusiast Series; the TX650 V2, TX750 V2 and TX850 V2.  All three new Version 2 power supplies have been designed to deliver clean, stable, continuous power at an affordable price for your high-end gaming rig or workstation.  Along with the TX650 V2, the TX750 V2 and TX850 V2 that we are reviewing today feature premium quality components, an energy-efficient design (80Plus Bronze certified) and quiet operation.  All of the Enthusiast Series power supplies are backed by a 5-year warranty and lifetime access to Corsair's comprehensive technical support and customer service.