Introduction and First Impressions
The Fatal1ty by Monster FXM100 gaming headset is designed to be very lightweight for a comfortable fit, while delivering powerful sound. It uses what the company calls “fHex720 Sound Chamber Technology”, which is said to provide clear, natural sound without distortion. In this review we’ll take a look at the design, and then explore fit, comfort, and (most of all) audio performance.
We received the version of the headset currently being sold at retail, and while it's marketed for console gaming and mobile use (with a single 3.5 mm connector), an adapter for PC use is available. To evaluate PC sound I simply plugged the headset into my computer’s headphone jack, but if you need to split the headphone and microphone output (the headset’s 3.5 mm connector is a 3-conductor plug that handles both) you’ll need an adapter. We were told that the version of the headset that will be available for purchase online will include this adapter.
Monster lists these features for the FXM 100 headset:
- Designed for Long Wear and Comfortable Fit
- Built Strong and Durable to Take Anywhere
- Exclusive fHex720 Sound Chamber Technology
- Game-tuned Pure Monster Sound
- Detachable Noise Cancelling Microphone
- Exclusive Sound Chamber Technology
- Game-tuned Pure Monster Sound
- Custom Built Drivers for Maximum Detail
- Detachable Noise Canceling Microphone
- In-line Audio Controls
- Tangle-free Cable
- Comfortable Over-Ear design
(Curiously, there are no specifics - driver size, sensitivity, frequency response, etc. - listed for these.)
One of the biggest features of this headset is its weight, and at just 6 oz it's a very light pair of gaming headphones. Just how powerful can the sound be when the total weight is so low? Let's find out!
Subject: General Tech | September 14, 2016 - 02:16 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: frame rating, deus ex: mankind divided, dx12, gaming
Just as we do here at PC Perspective, The Tech Report relies on rating frame times to provide accurate benchmarks as opposed to the raw number of frames per second a card provides. This means that their look at the new DX12 patch for Deus Ex focuses on different data which does not produce the same results as FRAPs would. This shows in their results, switching to DX12 results in much longer frame times in Deus Ex, with many spikes and a significant amount of frames that take more than 50ms to refresh. Drop by to see their full look here.
"An early version of Deus Ex: Mankind Divided's DirectX 12 rendering path is available now, and many sites and AMD itself are already producing average FPS numbers using that software. We go inside the second to see what the real story is."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- Deus Ex: Mankind Divided - PC graphics performance @ Guru of 3D
- Deus Ex: Mankind Divided Review @ OCC
- Dishonored 2: Happy Hour With Corvo Attano @ Rock, Paper, SHOTGUN
- Humble Store End of Summer Sale
- Wot I Think: Master Of Orion @ Rock, Paper, SHOTGUN
- CryEngine 5.3 release to add Vulkan support this November @ HEXUS
- Quick Look: The Turing Test @ GiantBomb
- Endless Space 2 Hands On: Buying Planets As The Mafia-Like Lumeris @ Rock, Paper, SHOTGUN
- Battlefleet Gothic: Armada Opening Tau Beta Tomorrow @ Rock, Paper, SHOTGUN
Subject: General Tech | September 8, 2016 - 04:27 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: gaming, dx 12, deus ex: mankind divided, Crimson Edition 16.9.1, amd
As of today you can now try out Deus Ex: Mankind Divided with DX12 enabled if you enable beta content in the game. The fifth patch offers several bug fixes but it also allows you to try out DX12 on your system. You can see where to head on your Steam client if you have never played with beta settings before. Once you have enabled beta content and Steam has synced, you will see a DirectX 12 option in the game's Display Options, assuming your card supports it.
For AMD users this should bring performance improvements as long as you first upgrade to the newly released Crimson Edition 16.9.1 driver which you can grab right here. The release notes from Edios/Square Interactive state that 'There are no visual or gameplay differences between the two DirectX versions.' so you will not see new features in your game. The new patch also states that it does not support multiple GPUs in DX12 so ensure you are only using a single card.
We have not been able to test the new patch or driver as of yet, however Guru of 3D did post some quick results in an update to their review of the game. AMD's RX 480, R9 390X and Fury X all see some improvements in 1080p and 1440p but at 4k the card's performance is already topped out. NVIDIA's cards all showed a slight drop at lower resolutions and like AMD, 4k performance is unchanged. The new DX12 patch is not enough to unseat the TITAN X and GTX 1080 as the top performers though.
If you have any issues when playing the game simply disable DX12 and get back to your game. We should see more patches in the near future as the game developers and the two GPU providers work on improving compatibility.
Subject: General Tech | September 7, 2016 - 01:30 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: gaming, onward, VR, htc vive, Downpour Interactive
Next up in [H]ard|OCP's series of VR game testing is Downpour Interactive's Onward, currently in early access and only available on the HTC Vive. As with previous testing this is not about benchmarking the greatest GPU for the game but focuses on the experience you will have playing the game on different GPUs. Frames dropping out or lagging on a monitor is mildly annoying but can completely ruin your day when using a VR headset. This one turned out to be quite a challenge, even the GTX 1080 had significant frame reproductions.
"Downpour Interactive is the company behind the Early Access Game, Onward. It is a self-proclaimed Mil-Sim shooter title. The big thing about this is it looks to be the first VR game that has solid support for multiplayer missions. HTC Vive currently required. What video card do we need this time around for best performance?"
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- Meet Titanfall 2’s New Titans @ Rock, Paper, SHOTGUN
- Tricking Duck Hunt to See A Modern LCD TV as CRT @ Hack a Day
- Cyberpunk 2077 development team is CD Projekt's biggest yet @ HEXUS
- Cool Movement Tricks In Throwback Arena FPS Toxikk @ Rock, Paper, SHOTGUN
- Duke Nukem 3D: 20th Anniversary World Tour arrives on 11th Oct @ HEXUS
- Do It Yourself With The Humble GameMaker Bundle @ Rock, Paper, SHOTGUN
Subject: General Tech | September 5, 2016 - 07:00 AM | Sebastian Peak
Tagged: razerzone, Razer Chroma, razer, Ornata, Mecha-Membrane, keyboard, gaming
Razer has annouced a new line of gaming keyboards called Ornata, which feature the company's "Razer Mecha-Membrane" technology, which is described as a cross between membrane, and mechanical-switch keyboards.
"Designed to combine the most desirable traits of membrane rubber dome design with the merits of mechanical keyboard technology, the Razer Mecha-Membrane delivers both a soft, cushioned touch and a crisp, tactile click with each keystroke.
Traditionally, users choose membrane rubber dome keyboards for comfort, while mechanical switches are favored for fast actuations and distinct tactile feedback. The Razer Mecha-Membrane is a unique mid-height keycap hybrid that provides a comfortable and efficient typing experience unlike any key type on the market."
Two versions will be available, beginning with the Razer Ornata Chroma, which offers individually-backlit keys with Razer Chroma RGB color effects.
"Gamers can choose from 16.8 million colors and a variety of effects. Custom settings can be created using the Razer Synapse software platform and shared with millions of other Razer software users via the Razer Chroma Workshop. In-game Razer Chroma lighting profiles are also integrated into popular game titles, including “Overwatch,” "Call of Duty®: Black Ops III," "Blade and Soul" and more."
The second version is the Razer Ornata, which does not include Chroma effects, instead offering green backlighting behind the keys.
The Razer Ornata Chroma is priced at $99.99, with the Razer Ornata priced at $79.99. Both keyboards are available immediately at the company's razerzone.com store, with worldwide availablity slated for October.
Full press release after the break.
Subject: Displays | August 31, 2016 - 01:44 PM | Sebastian Peak
Tagged: Z271T, XB271HUT, XB251HQT, Tobii, Predator, montior, gaming, g-sync, eye-tracking, display, curved, acer, 240Hz, 165hz, 144hz
Acer has announced three new G-Sync gaming monitors, all of which come equipped with eye-tracking technology from Tobii. The displays announced range from 24.5" to 27" in size, with refresh rates ranging up to 240 Hz.
Acer Predator Z271T
"Each new monitor features NVIDIA G-SYNC and high refresh rates for smooth gaming experiences without lag. The new Predator gaming monitors are available in different sizes and configurations to meet the needs of a wide range of users looking to take their gaming experiences forward."
- Predator Z271T: 27”, curved screen (1800R curvature), FHD 1920 x 1080, 144 Hz)
- Predator XB251HQT: 24.5”, flat ZeroFrame screen, FHD 1920 x 1080, 240 Hz)
- Predator XB271HUT: 27”, flat ZeroFrame screen, WQHD 2560 x 1440, 165 Hz)
Acer Predator XB271HUT
The Z271T is the sole curved display option, offering an 1800 radius curve and standard 1920x1080 resolution at 144 Hz. The flat-paneled versions provide a choice between very high refresh rates (240 Hz with the 1920x1080 XB251HQT) and higher resolution (2560x1440 at 165 Hz from the XB271HUT).
Acer Predator XB251HQT back, side view
U.S. pricing and availablity have not been announced.
Subject: Systems, Mobile | August 31, 2016 - 10:33 AM | Sebastian Peak
Tagged: 2560x1080, ips, Predator 21 X, notebook, laptop, gaming, curved, acer, kaby lake, GTX 1080, sli
Acer has announced "the world's first notebook with a curved screen", and this panel happens to be attached to a very high-end gaming laptop in the Predator 21 X.
In addition to the 2560x1080 curved 21-inch display, the new machine also offers Tobii eye-tracking technology, Intel 7th Generation "Kaby Lake" processors, and (last but not least) dual NVIDIA GTX 1080 GPUs in SLI.
"The Predator 21 X takes the flagship spot in Acer’s gaming notebook series and is advanced beyond anything on the market today. It’s the world’s first notebook to offer a curved 21-inch IPS display (2560 x 1080), and when combined with wide-angle viewing, it delivers a truly immersive gaming experience.
To bring gameplay immersion to the next level, the notebook also integrates Tobii eye-tracking technology for a new method of control that’s more intuitive and natural. Built-in eye-tracking hardware (infrared sensors and software) unlocks a completely new facet in gaming. By tracking a gamer’s eye with software, the notebook introduces new interactions like aiming, identifying enemies and taking cover simply by gazing at objects on the screen. Eye tracking also enhances the experience by providing infinite views whilst navigating treacherous paths and roads in a game."
Other features of the Predator 21 X include a keyboard with Cherry MX key switches, a unique design for the numeric keypad "that allows it to be flipped over and turned into a Precision Touchpad", a 5-fan cooling system, and a 4-speaker, dual-subwoofer premium sound system.
Pricing and availability have not been revealed.
Subject: General Tech | August 24, 2016 - 03:30 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: gaming, deus ex: mankind divided
You are probably wondering what kind of performance you will see when you run the new Deus Ex after you purchase it; as obviously you did not pre-order the game. TechPowerUp has you covered as they have tested the retail version of the game with a variety of cards to give you an idea of the load your GPU will be under. They started out testing memory usage with a Titan, running Ultra settings at 4K will use up to 5.5GB of memory, so mid range cards will certainly suffer at that point. Since not many of us are sporting Titans in our cases they also tried out the GTX 1060, 980Ti and 1080 along with the RX 480 and Fury X at a variety of settings. Read through their review to garner a rough estimate of your expected performance in Mankind Divided.
"Deus Ex Mankind Divided has just been released today. We bring you a performance analysis using the most popular graphics cards, at four resolutions, including 4K, at both Ultra and High settings. We also took a closer look at VRAM usage."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- Dawn of War 3: The most promising take on Warhammer 40K yet @ Ars Technica
- Total Warhammer: Grim & The Grave DLC Announced @ Rock, Paper, SHOTGUN
- Waaagh! WH40K: Armageddon – Da Orks Released @ Rock, Paper, SHOTGUN
- AMD and Nvidia tempt customers with new game bundles @ HEXUS
- How To Skip Deus Ex: Mankind Divided Intro Videos @ Rock, Paper, SHOTGUN
- Playerkind Divided – How’s Deus Ex Running For You? @ Rock, Paper, SHOTGUN
- Ubisoft showcases Watch Dogs 2, For Honor, The Crew and more @ HEXUS
- Premature Evaluation: Rogue System @ Rock, Paper, SHOTGUN
- Divinity: Original Sin 2 Smartly Reinvents The RPG Party @ Rock, Paper, SHOTGUN
- Dishonored 2 Gamescom Trailer Shows Emily’s Skillz @ Rock, Paper, SHOTGUN
Subject: Mobile | August 19, 2016 - 03:46 PM | Sebastian Peak
Tagged: UHD, ROG, Republic of Gamers, notebook, laptop, GX800, GTX 1080, gaming, g-sync, asus, 4k
ASUS has announced perhaps the most impressively-equipped gaming laptop to date. Not only does the new ROG GX800 offer dual NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 graphics in SLI, but these cards are powering an 18-inch 4K display panel with NVIDIA G-SYNC.
Not enough? The system also offers liquid cooling (via the liquid-cooling dock) which allows for overclocking of the CPU, graphics, and memory.
"ROG GX800 is the world’s first 18-inch real 4K UHD gaming laptop to feature the latest NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 in 2-Way SLI. It gives gamers desktop-like gaming performance, silky-smooth gameplay and detailed 4K UHD gaming environments. The liquid-cooled ROG GX800 features the ROG-exclusive Hydro Overclocking System that allows for extreme overclocking of the processor, graphics card and DRAM. In 3DMark 11 and Fire Strike Ultra benchmark tests, a ROG GX800 equipped with the Hydro Overclocking System scored 76% higher than other gaming laptops in the market.
ROG GX800 comes with NVIDIA G-SYNC technology and has plug-and-play compatibility with leading VR headsets to allow gamers to enjoy truly immersive VR environments. It has the MechTAG (Mechanical Tactile Advanced Gaming) keyboard with mechanical switches and customizable RGB LED backlighting for each key."
Specifics on availability and pricing were not included in the announcement.
Subject: Systems | August 17, 2016 - 04:37 PM | Ryan Shrout
Tagged: UHD, SFF, IDF 2016, idf, gigabyte, gaming, brix
While wandering around the exhibit area at this year’s Intel Developers Forum, I ran into our friends at Gigabyte a brand new BRIX small form factor PC. The BRIX Gaming UHD takes the now-standard NUC/BRIX block shape and literally raises it up, extending the design vertically to allow for higher performance components and the added cooling capability to integrate them.
The design of the BRIX Gaming UHD combines a brushed aluminum housing with a rubber base and bordering plastic sections to create a particularly stunning design that is both simple and interesting. Up top is a fan that pulls air through the entire chassis, running over the heatsink for the CPU and GPU. This is similar in function to the Mac Pro, though this is a much more compact device with a very different price point and performance target.
Around the back you’ll find all the connections that the BRIX Gaming UHD supplies: three (!!) mini DisplayPort connections, a full size HDMI output, four USB 3.0 ports, a USB 3.1 connection, two wireless antennae ports, Gigabit Ethernet and audio input and output. That is a HUGE amount of connectivity options and is more than many consumer’s current large-scale desktops.
The internals of the system are impressive and required some very custom design for cooling and layout.
The discrete NVIDIA graphics chip (in this case the GTX 950) is on the left chamber while the Core i7-6500HQ Skylake processor is on the left side along with the memory slot and wireless card.
Gigabyte measures the size of the BRIX Gaming UHD at 2.6 liters. Because of that compact space there is no room for hard drives: you get access to two M.2 2280 slots for storage instead. There are two SO-DIMM slots for DDR4 memory up to 2133 MHz, integrated 802.11ac support and support for quad displays.
Availability and pricing are still up in the air, though early reports are that starting cost will be $1300. Gigabyte updated me and tells me that the BRIX Gaming UHD will be available in October and that an accurage MSRP has not been set. It would not surprise me if this model never actually saw the light of day and instead Gigabyte waited for NVIDIA’s next low powered Pascal based GPU, likely dubbed the GTX 1050. We’ll keep an eye on the BRIX Gaming UHD from Gigabyte to see what else transpires, but it seems the trend of small form factor PCs that sacrifice less in terms of true gaming potential continues.