Buy an AMD GPU (or two) and get a free copy of DiRT 3

Subject: General Tech, Graphics Cards | May 24, 2011 - 02:29 PM |
Tagged: xfx, sapphire, powercolor, msi, his, free, dirt 3, amd

If you haven't heard of DiRT 3 by now, you've been missing one of the more technically innovative games developed recently.  Racing fans will go overboard for the choice of cars, spanning 50 years of racing history, which you can compete with in races across all terrain types and the more artistic will like the freestyle gymkhana events. 

The techies will be impressed by the depth of support for DX11 features and we're not just talking about tessellation added on as an afterthought.  The game was designed from the ground up to take advantage of the best graphics cards and to move the way light and shadows interact beyond DX10 HDR and the features other new games have been using. 

Whichever you are, picking up a new Radeon card from Sapphire, Powercolor, MSI, HIS or XFX nets you a free copy of the game! How can you go wrong with that?



No doubt you’ve heard that the newest addition to Codemasters’ racing games, DiRT 3 has launched today. The reviews are also in, and they’re great, I mean, they’re really great.

Being a Gaming Evolved title, we worked with Codemasters very closely on this one - DiRT 3 makes advances in graphics technologies, taking full advantage of the DirectX™ 11 API, first supported by AMD Radeon graphics. Here’s a glimpse of what DiRT 3 is truly capable of doing – giving players the ultimate visual experience:

  • Shader Model 5.0 Contact Hardening Shadows
  • DirectCompute Accelerated High Definition Ambient Occlusion
  • Optimized Hardware Tessellation

In addition, DiRT 3 has been validated for various Eyefinity configurations, including the brand new 5x1 setup. But the fun doesn’t stop there. You’ll see some examples of it here.

We believe DiRT 3 is such a great game, that we’ve been working with our AIB partners to make this game widely accessible to everyone who buys an AMD Radeon graphics card from our select AIBs, FOR FREE – please visit for more details.


Source: AMD

AMD FirePro V5900 & V7900: Professional Card, 3 Displays, Cheap...ish

Subject: General Tech, Graphics Cards | May 24, 2011 - 02:18 PM |
Tagged: firepro, amd

There exists a breed of video card users who want power, but not in games. They will pay thousands for the best hardware and not measure success in frames per second, but seconds per frame. There exists: professionals. AMD, NVIDIA, Matrox, and others cater to this market’s desire for top performance, features, and reliability in content production, scientific simulation, and engineering applications. AMD just recently updated their professional line with the V5900 and V7900 cards and are lauding some advantages to going red.


Professionals have standards: Be efficient. That is all.


There are four main points that AMD boasts for their latest entries into the professional market.

  • Geometry Boost: doubles the amount of geometry that can be processed per clock by the card which should make using large models a smoother experience.
  • EQAA: a new method of antialiasing which allows graphics cards to raise the level of antialiasing, but only for part of the process, and provide quality close to the higher level with a performance hit only slightly larger than the lower level. NVIDIA had CSAA, which is almost identical, for a while though.
  • PowerTune: a method of raising and lowering the clock rate of various components of the card to compensate for the differing load across the card at different times.
  • Single-card triple-monitor: the ability to connect more than two monitors to a single single-slot card allows professionals to have three (or four for the V7900) displays saving money, heat, and space. This is possibly the most compelling feature of the entire line, especially for the professional market. 
 No ATI to be seen here folks.
Obviously outside the professional market there is little use for graphics cards like these as gaming cards are cheaper and faster than their professional counterparts. For professionals, however, these cards look to be very compelling especially since performance is said to be within the same ballpark of and sometimes exceeding NVIDIA’s $4000 Quadro 6000. Troubles still exist for AMD as some professional applications such as After Effects and Premiere CS5 are partially coded in NVIDIA’s CUDA which will not be accelerated on AMD’s offering. Still, for programs not specifically written for NVIDIA, AMD’s latest offering looks to be very appetizing. Keep an eye out for our review coming very soon.
Source: Icronic

Leaking Llano and Bulldozer prices

Subject: General Tech | May 23, 2011 - 05:01 PM |
Tagged: llano, leak, bulldozer, amd

We now know what to expect from AMD's Llano, as far as pricing and initial model numbers.  None of the Llano chips top $200 which is good as the Intel models that they will be competing against are also in that price range.  Bulldozer is a little more expensive, with the lower end quad-core running $220 up to $320 for the high end octo-core, again bang on with Intel's competing Sandy Bridge parts.  It is a question of the performance gap between Intel and AMD, which unfortunately remains unanswered for now.


"AMD has started shipping its Llano APUs to notebook clients and will begin to market the APUs to channels in July 2011, according to sources from notebook makers.

AMD targets to ship one million notebook-use Llano APUs in June, 1.5 million in July, and a total of 8-9 million for the whole of 2011, revealed the sources, citing AMD's internal estimates.

If the shipment goals are realized, AMD will be able to boost its share in the notebook CPU segment to 15% by the end of the year, the sources commented."

Here is some more Tech News from around the web:

Tech Talk

Source: DigiTimes

AMD discusses "Heterogeneous Computing"

Subject: General Tech, Graphics Cards, Processors | May 22, 2011 - 11:04 PM |
Tagged: fusion, amd, AFDS

In a little over three weeks’ time AMD will host their AMD Fusion Developer Summit 2011 (AFDS): a three-day conference with the hopes of promoting heterogeneous computing amongst developers. We have increasingly seen potential applications of using the parts of your computer outside the standard x86 core over the years though much of it was through NVIDIA’s brand. Building up to the summit, AMD’s DeveloperCentral talked with Lee Howes, parallel computing expert and Member of Technical Staff for Programming Models at AMD, about his upcoming session at AFDS.


I can't get over how much AFDS looks like a diagnosis.

In the short five-question interview, Dr. Howes outlined that the goal of his session is to show developers what to expect, good and bad, from developing for a heterogeneous architecture such as that of an APU. The rest of the interview was spent discussing how heterogeneous computing is currently and will eventually look like. Topics spanned from the slow perceived uptake of parallel computing in the home to the technological limitations of traditional CPUs that APUs and other heterogeneous computing systems look to bypass.

While AFDS is (by its namesake) a developer’s conference it is very much relevant to peer at for the end-user. The support for developers of newer computing architectures will help fuel the cycle of adoption between software and hardware which ends up with a better experience for us. What tasks would you like to see accelerated by heterogeneous computing? Let us know in the comments below.

PCPer v4.0 Giveaway: ASUS GeForce GTX 570 DirectCU II Graphics Card

Subject: Editorial, General Tech, Graphics Cards | May 22, 2011 - 09:16 PM |
Tagged: gtx 570, giveaway, contest, asus

As you can no doubt tell, PC Perspective got a HUGE and much needed facelift recently to what we are internally calling "PC Perspective v4.0".  I know there are still some kinks to work out and we are actively addressing any feedback from our readers in this comment thread.  

But we want to celebrate the launch of the new site in style!!  Some of our site sponsors have very generously offered up some prizes for us to give out throughout the coming days...

The tenth (!!) prize is a wicked ASUS GeForce GTX 570 DirectCU II card that is a triple-slot design and that supports 3D Vision Surround out of the box!


What do you have to do to win this wonderful piece of hardware?

Couldn't be easier: post a comment in this post thanking ASUS for its sponsorship of PC Perspective as well as what feature in a graphics card you would most like to see in the future.  Be creative! You should probably have a registered account or at least be sure you include your email address in the appropriate field so we can contact you!

Source: ASUS

MeeGo to 1.2, YouGo to download?

Subject: General Tech, Mobile | May 20, 2011 - 02:04 AM |
Tagged: meego

For those who desire an alternative to Windows 7 in their netbooks or Android in their tablet: The Linux Foundation, Intel, Nokia, Novell, and AMD are continuously developing an alternative mobile operating system based on Linux. While there are currently large doubts about how many participants are still active members in this project there must be someone still coding away because version 1.2 was released to the public.

I’m Tuxing over! : D
This version contains improvement to the following segments of MeeGo:
  • An updated Netbook “User Experience”
  • An updated in-vehicle “User Experience”
  • Developer preview for those wishing to install MeeGo on tablets
  • And of course an updated SDK
Intel and AMD continue to pledge support towards the development of MeeGo though Nokia’s recent partnership with Microsoft puts their support for MeeGo into question. Intel recently took the opportunity to blame Nokia for Intel’s lackluster mobile performance as a whole and is currently in the process of pitching handset designs they developed with Nokia to other manufacturers. Intel is also currently playing with Google’s Android to stake the ground for a foothold on ARM turf. For the nearer future, however, MeeGo claims that they will continue on their approximately 6-month release cycle and will ship MeeGo 1.3 in the October timeframe. 
Source: MeeGo

PC Perspective Podcast #155 - MSI GT680R Notebook, Corsair 650D chassis, VIA Nano Quad Core and more!

Subject: Editorial, General Tech | May 19, 2011 - 03:24 PM |
Tagged: pcper, podcast, msi, VIA, Nano, quad core, corsair, 650d, Intel

PC Perspective Podcast #155 - 5/19/2011

This week we talk about the MSI GT680R Notebook, Corsair 650D chassis, VIA Nano Quad Core and more!

You can subscribe to us through iTunes and you can still access it directly through the RSS page HERE.

The URL for the podcast is: - Share with your friends!

  • 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

Hosts: Jeremy Hellstrom, Josh Walrath and Allyn Malventano

This Podcast is brought to you by MSI Computer, and their all new Sandy Bridge Motherboards!

Program length: 43:49

Program Schedule:


ARCTIC drops the Cooling from its name and gets into audio

Subject: General Tech | May 19, 2011 - 11:54 AM |
Tagged: arctic, audio, headset, headphone

ARCTIC Cooling is no more, they've rebranded themselves and joined the rest of the industry in providing fragmented product lines.   They'll still make heatsinks for CPUs but are also going to be pushing a line of headsets for a wide variety of uses; they are currently peddling 20 different models.  [H]ard|OCP received three to review, ear can style headphones for listening to music, a Bluetooth set for those on the go and a 5.1 surround gaming headset with mic.  Only one received a recommendation from them, head on over to find out which.


"ARCTIC is well known for its processor air coolers and its fans alike. In the last couple of years it has greatly diversified its product line to include products from remote control toy cars to computer audio headphones. Today we look at three of its headphone and headset products and let you know the value of those."

Here is some more Tech News from around the web:

Audio Corner

Source: [H]ard|OCP

NVIDIA drops $163 million in generated revenue

Subject: General Tech | May 19, 2011 - 11:35 AM |
Tagged: nvidia, quarter, income

We have been discussing the changes to the graphics market on the front page and on the Podcast, and as expected NVIDIA's income has shrunk.  Last year NVIDIA was generating $800 million but saw revenue drop bu over $100 million, in perspective SemiAccurate pegs their professional graphics division at about $200 million.  If NVIDIA is going to be able to keep their R&D team working on chips several generations ahead of the current products on the market, which they need to in order to be competitive, they had better hope that their foray into the mobile chip market is lucrative enough to pay the bills.


"Nvidia (NASDAQ:NVDA) published their results last Thursday topping analyst estimates and six days later the stock was down 10%. What happened?

The numbers were pretty good. Revenue was up and Tegra™ finally started to get traction, more than 3 times up but there are some red lights. First their revenues are down YoY. Second, their GPU business is down YoY and last, but not least, their professional business revenue is more or less flat for the last quarter."

Here is some more Tech News from around the web:

Tech Talk

Source: SemiAccurate

Intel Talks Finances And Growth At Investor Meeting 2011

Subject: General Tech | May 18, 2011 - 05:29 PM |
Tagged: revenue, Intel, cagr

Intel held its annual Investor Meeting today, where the chip maker talked software, the state of the business, as well as new hardware and leveraging microarcitecture leadership. This installment focuses on the business growth and financial aspects.

With 43,905 United States employees and a rank of 62 on the 2010 Fortune 500 list, Intel is a huge company.  And with an over $10 billion dollar Q1 2011, Intel is doing quite well.

During the investor meeting, Intel's CFO (Chief Financial Officer) Stacy Smith took the stage to talk about the company's financial performance and how the company is growing. One of the first points that he talked about was Intel's design and manufacturing advantages. Intel spends a great deal of it's capitol on R&D (research and development). and this investment in itself and the amount of research that is completed, allows the chip maker to maintain it's x86 market leadership. The company has also started acquiring other companies in an effort to differentiate itself from its competitors. For example, the recent McAfee acquisition has brought security and software engineers to Intel's portfolio, and will allow them to create security software solutions that can easily be paired with their hardware.


Intel also stated that it is growing, and expects to sell even more hardware thanks to emerging markets and the rise in "cloud computing" requiring larger and more numerous data centers.  The chart above shows Intel's CAGR (compound annual growth rate), which is a number created by taking the nth root of the total percentage growth rate with "n" being the total number of years calculated.  It is a way for companies to describe the rate of investment growth if it grew at a steady rate (which is unlikely to happen in real life due to a dynamic and constantly changing market).  Including the company's projections for 2011, Intel is looking at a 12% CAGR for revenue and a 35% CAGR in EPS or earnings per share.

Paul S. Otellini, who is the President and Chief Executive Officer for Intel reaffirmed Intel's growth by stating that 74.5 quintillion transistors shipped in 2010.  This rapid rise in growth can be attributed to cloud computing demands for more data centers, emerging markets adopting more computers, and Intel's interest in the mobile market.

The historic part of the graph above shows the rise in traditional servers from 1995 to its highesd point in 2010 as the Internet becomes further adopted and more and more applications execute server side.  The right side of the graph; however, shows Intel's projections for the future from 2010 to 2015.  They expect to see a massive increase in processor growth for data center market thanks to an influx of new cloud computing applications and networked storage.  Intel also stated that the company's latest Xenon processors are no longer second to Itanium for mission critical applications, and thus Intel expects a rise in Core processors for mission critical servers.  In 2010 alone, the company had $8.4B in revenue and $4.4B of operating profit.  In 2013, Intel forecasts a 15% growth in revenue with operating margins at ~50% for the data center group.

From the PC Client Group, which encompasses both desktops and laptops, Intel had almost $7 million dollars for Q1 2011 revenue, which is at least $1 million more than Q1 2010.  Further, their reported Q1 revenue for 2011 is the highest that it has ever been between Q1 2008 and Q1 2010.  Their operating margins have also increased compared to 2008, with a 17% CAGR.  Intel also revisited the issue of high R&D budgets, and showed that the overall cost across platform segments have declined since 2008.  As research cost for new technologies increase, the cost to make wafers decreases.  Intel forecasts that for the Performance, Mainstream, and Atom platforms, the costs will continue to decrease into 2011 and 2012 while the Value platform will see a slight increase in 2011 and remain stable into 2012.

Emerging markets are also responsible for the company's growth.  Intel stated that "you will see a rapid increase in PC penetration rates in China, Latin America, and Eastern Europe."  Both Brazil and Eastern Europe are projected to reach 80% PC penetration in 2015, for example.  China is expected to attain a 40% penetration rate, while India will have 10%.  Intel stated that this is possible thanks to falling prices in computers along with rising incomes worldwide.  Once a country's incomes reach a level where 4 to 8 weeks is enough to purchase a PC, the penetration rate sees a rapid increase.  Currently, Intel has determined 4.2 WOI (weeks of income) are necessary to purchase a PC worldwide, which is much lower than the 9.9 weeks of income necessary the previous year.  In 2014, Intel projects that only 2.3 weeks of income will be necessary.  Inside the worldwide WOI spectrum, North America has the lowest WOI each year, followed by Japan and Western Europe.  India and China have historically had the highest WOI; however, Intel projects that by 2014, the countries will have greatly reduced their WOI at 10.3 and 2.6 respectively.

While data centers, emerging markets are responsible for the majority of Intel's projected growth, Intel also has both the embedded and software and services group.  On the embedded side, Intel is expecting a 11% CAGR between 2010 and 2013.  In 2010, the embedded group saw $1.5 billion dollars in revenue, and Intel projects almost $2 billion dollars in revenue in 2011.  Intel has stated that they are "making significant investments in SoC, tablet, and smart phone R&D" and that they "expect market segment share gains and growing businesses in tablets, smart phones (application and base band processors), and connected CE (consumer electronics) devices."

The Software and Services Group also accounts for a small portion of Intel's revenue.  The company's software acquisitions include McAfee, Wind River, and Havok among others.  The group is a rapidly growing part of Intel, with a projected $3 billion dollars of revenue in 2013 compared to $330 million dollars in revenue in 2010.  The group is an "upside opportunity as we embed additional security features into hardware and software," according to Intel.

Further, Intel showed a glimpse of it's NAND Solutions Group, and indicated that it forecasts a slightly increased operating profit for 2011 which coincides with Intel lowering the Cost/GB of NAND based devices (such as SSDs) compared to the industry leader.

As a company that diversifies it's products, leads the x86 markets, and invests heavily in itself with acquisitions and R&D, Intel is a profitable company that shows no signs of slowing it's growth.

Source: Intel