Subject: Graphics Cards | February 20, 2017 - 07:54 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: aorus, gtx 1080 Xtreme Edition, GTX 1080, nvidia, gigabyte
Gigabyte created their Aorus line of products to attract enthusiasts away from some of the competitions sub-brands, such as ASUS ROG. It is somewhat similar to the Gigabyte Xtreme Edition released last year but their are some differences, such as the large copper heatsink attached to the bottom of the CPU. The stated clockspeeds are the same as last years model and it also sports the two HDMI connections on the front of the card to connect to Gigabyte's VR Extended Front panel. The Tech Report manually overclocked the card and saw the Aorus reach the highest frequencies they have seen from a GP104 chip, albeit by a small margin. Check out the full review right here.
"Aorus is expanding into graphics cards today with the GeForce GTX 1080 Xtreme Edition 8G, a card that builds on the strong bones of Gigabyte's Editor's Choice-winning GTX 1080 Xtreme Gaming. We dig in to see whether Aorus' take on a GTX 1080 is good enough for a repeat."
Here are some more Graphics Card articles from around the web:
- Gigabyte GTX 1080 Aorus Xtreme Edition 8 GB @ techPowerUp
- NVIDIA’s Fastest Graphics Card Ever: A Look At The Quadro P6000 @ Techgage
- Radeon Windows 10 vs. Linux RadeonSI/RADV Gaming Performance @ Phoronix
- Windows 10 vs. Ubuntu Linux Gaming Performance With NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060/1080 @ Phoronix
Subject: Editorial | February 16, 2017 - 06:36 PM | AlexL
Tagged: Zen, Z170, webkit, webgpu, podcast, Optane, nvidia, Intel, icx, evga, ECS, crucial, Blender, anidees, amd
PC Perspective Podcast #437 - 02/16/17
Join us for EVGA iCX, Zen Architechure, Intel Optane, new NVIDIA and AMD driver releases, and more!
The URL for the podcast is: http://pcper.com/podcast - Share with your friends!
- iTunes - Subscribe to the podcast directly through the iTunes Store (audio only)
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Hosts: Allyn Malventano, Ken Addison, Josh Walrath, Jermey Hellstrom
Program length: 1:32:21
Podcast topics of discussion:
Week in Review:
News items of interest:
Hardware/Software Picks of the Week
Subject: Processors | February 21, 2017 - 03:54 PM | Sebastian Peak
Tagged: ryzen, rumor, report, R7, processor, leak, IPC, cpu, Cinebench, benchmark, amd, 1700X
The Ryzen 7 1700X is reportedly an 8-core/16-thread processor with a base clock speed of 3.40 GHz, and while overall performance from the leaked benchmarks looks very impressive, it is the single-threaded score from the Cinebench R15 run pictured which really makes this CPU look like major competition for Intel with IPC.
An overall score of 1537 is outstanding, placing the CPU almost even with the i7-6900K at 1547 based on results from AnandTech:
Image credit AnandTech
And the single-threaded performance score of the reported Ryzen 7 1700X is 154, which places it above the i7-6900K's score of 153. (It is worth noting that Cinebench R15 shows a clock speed of 3.40 GHz for this CPU, which is the base, while CPU-Z is displaying 3.50 GHz - likely indicating a boost clock, which can reportedly surpass 3.80 GHz with this CPU.)
Other results from the reported leak include 3DMark Fire Strike, with a physics score of 17,916 with Ryzen 7 1700X clocking in at ~3.90 GHz:
We will know soon enough where this and other Ryzen processors stand relative to Intel's current offerings, and if Intel will respond to the (rumored) price/performance double whammy of Ryzen. An i7-6900K retails for $1099 and currently sells for $1049 on Newegg.com, and the rumored pricing (taken from Wccftech), if correct, gives AMD a big win here. Competition is very, very good!
Chart credit Wccftech.com
Subject: General Tech | February 16, 2017 - 07:24 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: boinc, fast radio bursts
If you are not familiar with the Berkeley Open Infrastructure for Networked Computing, aka BOINC, then hopefully it is because you devote your spare processing power to Folding@Home. If you are still unfamiliar, it is a way to divvy up huge data sets and associated calculations to numerous local clients, install by volunteers who are willing to donate spare processing cycles; the most famous is SETI@Home.
The story at the The Register describes something similar, though instead of performing the calculations, you would capture the data. The idea is to utilize the radio receivers in mobile devices and software defined radio kits to capture the mysterious fast radio bursts that astronomers have detected emanating from far off galaxies. The researchers have a lot of work ahead of them as the 1GHz signals can be swamped by terrestrial sources and the periodicity of the signals is not clear. It will be interesting to watch how this project unfolds.
"Friends, take out your mobiles in the name of science! Astronomers from the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics are trying to look for fast radio bursts in the Milky Way galaxy with “low-cost radio receivers.” And by that, they mean, your smartphones."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- As Microsoft touts Windows Insider for biz, let's take a look at W10's broken 2FA logins @ The Register
- The Asus Tinker Board (Updated) @ Hack a Day
- Gabe Newell isn't really here @ Polygon
- Oracle's ongoing war with Google could bring the software industry to its knees @ The Inquirer
- Global IPv4 address drought: Seriously, we're done now. We're done @ The Register
- IBM's Watson Dons a Suit and Tie @ Hardware Secrets
Subject: General Tech | February 15, 2017 - 09:00 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: input, genius, scorpion M8-610, gaming mouse, ambidextrous
The symmetrical design of the Genius Scorpion M8-610 will ensure comfort no matter what your chirality is, something that is seemingly more uncommon in gaming mice these days. The Avago ADNS-9800 laser sensor can provide between 800 to 8200 DPI and all the buttons are Omron D2FC-F-7N, not bad for a mouse that runs less than $40. Modders Inc took a look at the mouse and the software suite which accompanies it in their latest review; take a look at what they thought right here.
"While it is easy to get lured by fancy colors and flashy design when looking for a gaming mouse, it always comes down to functional consistency above all else. Aside from the keyboard, the mouse allows users to communicate with the computer and to the wider world online."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- CORSAIR Scimitar PRO RGB MOBA/MMO Gaming Mouse Review @ NikKTech
- Gamdias Hermes E1 & Demeter E2 @ Benchmark Reviews
- Corsair K95 RGB Platinum @ Benchmark Reviews
- Corsair K95 RGB Platinum Mechanical Gaming Keyboard @ eTeknix
- Corsair K95 RGB Platinum Keyboard @ Kitguru
- ErgoDox EZ Shine Keyboard @ techPowerUp
Subject: Graphics Cards | February 14, 2017 - 10:57 PM | Scott Michaud
Tagged: amd, graphics drivers
Just in time for For Honor and Sniper Elite 4, AMD has released a new set of graphics drivers, Radeon Software Crimson ReLive 17.2.1, that target these games. The performance improvements that they quote are in the 4-5% range, when compared to their previous driver on the RX 480, which would be equivalent to saving a whole millisecond per frame at 60 FPS. (This is just for mathematical reference; I don’t know what performance users should expect with an RX 480.)
Beyond driver overhead improvements, you will now be able to utilize multiple GPUs in CrossFire (for DirectX 11) on both titles.
Also, several issues have been fixed with this version. If you have a FreeSync monitor, and some games fail to activate variable refresh mode, then this driver might solve this problem for you. Scrubbing through some videos (DXVA H.264) should no longer cause visible corruption. A couple applications, like GRID and DayZ, should no longer crash under certain situations. You get the idea.
If you have an AMD GPU on Windows, pick up these drivers from their support page.
Subject: General Tech | February 14, 2017 - 06:39 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: amazon, chime, videoconferencing
If there is one thing we are short on, it is incompatible videoconferencing applications to use and support. Obviously this is why Amazon purchased Biba and has now leaped into the fray to provide Chime, a truly unique service which will transmit your voice and video over the internet in something called a conference. Sarcasm aside, Amazon Web Services have proven that they provide a solid set of services, which will be the backbone of the new app. Those who have struggled with Adobe's offering or tried to have a meeting during many of the outage periods which plague various other providers might want to take a look.
The basic service is free, Plus allows screen sharing and access to corporate directories for $2.50 per user a month and the Pro version runs $15, allowing up to 100 people in a video call as well as the all important personalized URL. Pop by Slashdot if you so desire.
"Amazon has released new service to make voice and video calls and share screen. Called Chime, the service is aimed at business users. It directly competes with well-known players such as Skype, Google Hangouts, GoToMeeting, Zoom, and Cisco's WebEx, among others."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- Sugar helps make new sodium sulphur battery @ Nanotechweb
- Twitter rolls back anti-abuse tool after it's slammed for 'blinding the vulnerable' @ The Inquirer
- Microsoft Launches Outlook.com Premium Email Service, Costs $20 Per Year @ Slashdot
- Flash Nano: Germanane FET shows real promise for optoelectronics @ Nanotechweb
Subject: Motherboards | February 21, 2017 - 10:16 AM | Tim Verry
Tagged: ryzen, M.2, ddr4, biostar, amd, AM4
The X370GT7 is part of Biostar's racing series and features a black PCB with checkered flag artwork and LED-backlit "armor" over the rear IO edge. The motherboard surrounds the AMD AM4 socket with two large heat spreaders cooling a 8+4 Digital Power+ power phase (PowIRstage IC), four DDR4 slots (up to 64GB at 2667 MHz), and a M.2 (32 Gbps) slot with bundled SSD heat spreader that matches the racing and carbon fiber aesthetic.
The bottom half of the AM4 Motherboard houses the X370 chipset, six SATA 3 ports, two PCI-E 3.0 x16 slots (running 1 at x16 or both at x8 with Ryzen, Bristol Ridge is limited to one x8 slot), one PCI-E 2.0 x16 (electrically x4) slot, and three PCI-E 2.0 x1 slots. Biostar also highlights the inclusion of 5050 LED headers and a USB 3.1 front panel header with "Lightning Charger" which supports Quick Charge 2.0 (12V@1.5A) as well as Apple devices (5V@2.4A).
Around back, the X370GT7 has the following rear IO ports:
- 1 x USB 3.1 Type-C
- 1 x USB 3.1 Gen 2
- 4 x USB 3.1 Gen 1 (USB 3.0)
- 3 x Video Outputs:
- 1 x DisplayPort (4K@60Hz)
- 1 x HDMI 2.0 (4K@60Hz)
- 1 x DVI-D (1200p@60Hz)
- 1 x Gigabit Ethernet (Realtek RTL8118AS)
- Audio (Realtek ALC1220, 8 channel Blu Ray Audio, "Biostar Hi-FI")
- 5 x Analog out
- 1 x S/PDIF
While an Intel NIC would have been nice to see, the Biostar board looks to offer up a decent package of connections and the Realtek audio codec has been around for a while and should be fairly well developed at this point though we will have to see how well Biostar's Hi-Fi implementation fares. Further, Biostar also offers a small touch panel on the board called GT Touch that lets users switch UEFI profiles between performance and eco-friendly modes as well as power and reset buttons for testing outside of a case. For LED fans Biostar bundles software called "LED DJ" that lets you configure an LED light show that responds to music being played on the PC. (Yes, this is a thing now hehe.)
It is nice to see Biostar rising to the occasion and offering up more options for Ryzen CPUs. Unfortunately as is the case with more things there is no word on pricing or availability yet though rumors would suggest an early march release to coincide with Ryzen processors hitting store shelves.
- CES 2017: Gigabyte Teases New AM4 Platform Motherboards
- AMD Details AM4 Chipsets and Upcoming Motherboards
- Dissecting AMD Zen Architecture - Interview with David Kanter
Subject: General Tech | February 20, 2017 - 09:46 PM | Scott Michaud
Tagged: vulkan, Qt, nvidia
NVIDIA has just donated their entire DRIVE Design Studio to The Qt Company, who will form it into Qt 3D Studio. This product will be a visual editor for 3D user interfaces, where layers of 2D and 3D objects can be created, animated, and integrated into C++ applications. It will take them a little while to clean it up for public consumption, but it will eventually be available under the commercial / open-source dual-license that users of Qt are accustomed to.
If you’re not familiar with the Qt Framework, then, basically, think of a cross-platform, open-source alternative to the .NET framework, although it is based in unmanaged C++. (It also competes with GTK+. This isn’t a major point, but I would like it to be clear that it’s not a two-person race between one proprietary and one open-source player.) When AMD updated their graphics drivers to Crimson Edition, and flaunted huge speed-ups, it was mostly because they switched the control panel's UI framework from .NET to Qt.
As an aside, The Qt Company joined the Khronos Group on the day that Vulkan launched, which was almost exactly a year ago, and they are actively working on integrating the API in their framework. Combined with today’s announcement, it’s not hard to imagine how much easier it will be, some day, to create efficient and beautiful UIs.
Update: Speaking of which, The Qt Company is apparently planning to release Vulkan support with Qt 5.10.
Subject: General Tech | February 20, 2017 - 05:56 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: linux, linux 4.10
The new week brings a new Linux kernel to users, with some additions which will interest fans of low powered computing as well as those of high powered machines. The new kernel brings support for the Snapdragon 808 and 810 for those who are working with Linux on those SOCs. For the high powered crew, added support for L2 and L3 cache on Intel processors, there is now support for virtual GPUs and The Inquirer mentions that AMD cards should get a bit of a boost. So much for skipping straight to 4.11.
"On the whole, 4.10 didn't end up as small as it initially looked.After the huge release that was 4.9, I expected things to be pretty quiet, but it ended up very much a fairly average release by modern kernel standards. So we have about 13,000 commits (not counting merges - that would be another 1200+ commits if you count those)."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- 20 per cent of emails sent in 2016 were loaded with ransomware @ The Inquirer
- Microsoft Has Cancelled the Second-Gen HoloLens, Working on Third-Gen For 2019 Launch @ Slashdot
- The Complete Samsung Forum 2017 Coverage @ TechARP
- Some Recyclers Give Up On Recycling Old Monitors And TVs @ Slashdot
Subject: Mobile | February 21, 2017 - 01:19 PM | Sebastian Peak
Tagged: X20, snapdragon, qualcomm, modem, LTE, DSDV, Category 18, Carrier Aggregation, CA, 5x20 MHz
Qualcomm has announced the Snapdragon X20 LTE modem, their 2nd-generation Gigabit LTE solution built on 10nm FinFET and offering what Qualcomm says are “a number of industry firsts”, which include first to Category 18 (downlink) and first to receive up to 12 spacial LTE data streams simultaneously.
“It is the first commercially announced Gigabit LTE chipset designed to deliver fiber-like LTE Category 18 download speeds of up to 1.2 Gbps, a 20 percent improvement in download speeds over the previous generation. Additionally, it allows support for up to 5x20 MHz downlink Carrier Aggregation (CA) across licensed and unlicensed FDD and TDD radio frequencies, as well as 4x4 MIMO on up to three aggregated LTE carriers. Lastly, it supports integrated Dual SIM Dual VoLTE (DSDV) capability, a first for Snapdragon LTE modems. These leading-edge features of the Snapdragon X20 LTE modem are supported by the first commercially announced single-chip RF transceiver capable of simultaneously receiving up to 12 spatial streams of LTE data.”
Compared the the X16 modem featured in the upcoming Snapdragon 835 SoC, the Snapdragon X20 LTE modem moves from Cat 16 to Cat 18 on the downlink, with support for 5x20 MHz (vs. the X16’s 4x20 MHz) Carrier Aggregation and “can simultaneously receive 12 unique streams of data on as few as three 20 MHz carriers”, with up to 256-QAM and 100 Mbps per stream. Uplink is at the same 2x20 MHz/64-QAM as the X16 modem, for speeds of up to 150 Mbps.
The X20 LTE modem now includes VoLTE for both cards in a dual-SIM implementation:
“The Snapdragon X20 LTE modem also features more advanced dual SIM functionality and, as the first Snapdragon LTE modem to support DSDV, it provides users with the benefits of Ultra HD Voice and other IMS-based services on both SIMs inserted into the device.”
Qualcomm has begun to sample the Snapdragon X20 LTE modem to customers, with the first commercial devices expected 1H 2018.
Full press release after the break.
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