PC Perspective Podcast #527 - Wooting One Analog Keyboard, RTX 2060 Leaks, and Our PCPer History

Subject: General Tech | January 3, 2019 - 05:50 AM |
Tagged: wooting one, video, vega APU, standing desk, rx vega, RTX 2060, podcast, OC Scanner, floppy drive, eero, dell

PC Perspective Podcast #527 - 1/2/2019

Our podcast this week looks at the analog optical Wooting One keyboard, new entry-level AMD APUs with Vega graphics, the latest RTX 2060 rumors, and a discussion of how we all found ourselves here at PCPer.

Subscribe to the PC Perspective Podcast

Check out previous podcast episodes: http://pcper.com/podcast

Today's Podcast Hosts
Sebastian Peak
Josh Walrath
Jeremy Hellstrom
Jim Tanous

Show Topics
00:03:27 - Intro: Extra Life Update
00:05:31 - Review: Wooting One Analog Optical Keyboard
00:11:31 - News: AMD Athlon Vega APUs
00:14:09 - News: MSI B450/B350 Athlon 200GE Overclocking
00:17:45 - News: Dell Goes Public (Again)
00:22:17 - News: ARM Cortex-A65AE with SMT
00:26:52 - News: NVIDIA OC Scanner for Pascal
00:29:19 - News: NVIDIA RTX 2060 Leaks
00:35:38 - Discussion: Gaming & Poor Parenting
00:40:19 - Discussion: PC Perspective History
00:56:55 - Picks of the Week
01:12:10 - Outro

Picks of the Week
Jim - FlexiSpot SanoDesk Pro
Jeremy - Not the Logitech Harmony Hub
Josh - eero Home WiFi System
Sebastian - Gotek Floppy Drive Emulator

AMD Announces Availability of Athlon Processors With Vega Graphics APUs

Subject: Processors | December 22, 2018 - 12:02 AM |
Tagged: Zen, ryzen, rx vega, athlon, APU, amd, 240GE, 220GE

Today AMD announced the availability of its budget Zen-based Athlon Processor with Vega Graphics APUs and released details about the Athlon 220GE and Athlon 240GE APUs that complement the Athlon 200GE it talked about back in September.

AMD Athlon Processor With Radeon Vega Graphics_APU.png

These Athlon 200-series processors are aimed at the budget and mainstream markets to fill the need for a basic processor for everyday tasks such as browsing the internet, checking email, and doing homework. The APUs utilize a 14nm manufacturing process and pair Zen CPU cores with a Vega-based GPU in a 35 watt power envelope, and are aimed at desktops utilizing the AM4 socket.

The Athlon 200GE, 220GE, and 240GE are all dual core, 4-thread processors with 4MB L3 cache and GPUs with 3 compute units (192 cores) clocked at 1 GHz. They all support dual channel DDR4 2667 MHz memory and have 35W TDPs. Where the Athlon APUs differ is in CPU clockspeeds with the higher numbered models having slightly higher base clock speeds.

APU Model Athlon 200GE Athlon 220GE Athlon 240GE
Cores/Threads 2 / 4 2 / 4 2 / 4
Base Freq 3.2 GHz 3.4 GHz 3.5 GHz
Graphics CUs 3 3 3
Graphics Freq 1 GHz 1 GHz 1 GHz
L3 Cache 4MB 4MB 4MB
TDP 35W 35W 35W
Pricing (SEP) $55 $65 $75

The Athlon 200GE starts at 3.2 GHz for $54.98 with an additional $10 buying you the 3.4 GHz 220GE and another $10 premium buying the $74.98 Athlon 240GE's 3.5 GHz CPU clocks. The Athlon 220GE seems to be the best value in that respect, because the extra $10 buys you an extra 200 MHz and the jump to the 240GE only gets an extra 100 MHz for the same extra cost. (Keep in mind that these chips are not unlocked.) Then again, if you are on a tight budget where every dollar counts, the 200GE may be what you end up going with so that you can buy better RAM or more storage.

The new chips are available now but it seems retailers aren't quite ready with their listings as while the 200GE is up for sale at Amazon, the 220GE and 240GE are not yet listed online at the time of writing.

The Athlon 200GE-series APUs introduce a new lower-end option that sits below Ryzen 3 at a lower price point for basic desktops doing typical office or home entertainment duties. With a 35W TDP they might also be useful in fanless home theater PCs and game streaming endpoints for gaming on the big screen.

I am also curious whether these chips will be used for by the DIY and enthusiast community as the base for budget (gaming) builds and if they might see the same popularity as the Athlon X4 860K (note: no built-in graphics). I would be interested in the comparison between the 4c/4t 860K ($57) and the 2c/4t 200GE ($55) to see how they stack up with the newer process node and core design. On the other hand, enthusiasts may well be better served with the overclockable Ryzen 3 2200G ($97) if they want a budget Zen-based part that also has its own GPU.

What are your thoughts on the new Athlon APUs?

Related reading:

Source: AMD

Buy an RX Vega, RX 590, RX 580 or an RX 570 and get free sequels

Subject: General Tech | November 15, 2018 - 02:37 PM |
Tagged: rx vega, rx 590, RX 580, RX 570, The Division 2, resident evil 2, devil may cry 5

Along with the release of the new RX 590 comes a new deal to get yourself some free games ...  eventually.  The three games, Resident Evil 2, Devil May Cry 5 and Tom Clancy’s The Division 2 are not available until early 2019 but you can get your key now. 

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If they are free, it's not really a pre-order after all.  The deal kicks off today and ends February 9, 2019 or until the keys run out.  You have until April 6, 2019 to claim your game so don't sit on it too long.

 

Source: AMD

Star Control: Origins, Strange Brigade and Assassin's Creed Odyssey FREE with Radeon RX Vega, RX 580 or RX 570

Subject: General Tech | August 7, 2018 - 02:39 PM |
Tagged: amd, gaming, rx vega, RX 580, RX 570, Assassin's Creed Odyssey, Strange Brigade, Star Control: Origins

AMD is offering three free games with the purchase of one of their new GPUs between today, August 7th, and November 3, 2018 with the game codes being redeemable until December 31, 2018.  None of the three games are yet released, Strange Brigade comes on August 28, Star Control: Origins on September 20 and Assassin's Creed Odyssey coming October 5. 

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As you do get them all for free the usual pre-order advice would not apply and you should definitely take advantage of this deal if you have any inclination of picking up an AMD GPU in the near future. 

This announcement comes at the same time as the arrival of the new MECH 2 RX 570 and 580 series from MSI, with a reasonable overclock out of the box and an updated cooler design.  Look out for more news on those two GPUs very soon.

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Today, AMD announced that gamers can get the PC versions of the highly anticipated Assassin's Creed Odyssey, Star Control: Origins and Strange Brigade for FREE when they buy an AMD Radeon RX Vega, RX 580 or RX 570 graphics card, once the titles are released.
 
Fast-forward to the year 2086 to join the galactic community and feel the thrill of ship-to-ship battle in Star Control: Origins. Stand against an ancient forgotten evil power in Strange Brigade. And forge your destiny and define your own path in war-torn Ancient Greece as you live an epic adventure in Assassin’s Creed Odyssey.
 
Strange Brigade will be available on August 28, Star Control: Origins will be available on September 20 and Assassin's Creed Odyssey will be available on October 5. The promotional period begins August 7 and expires November 3, 2018. Games can be redeemed until December 31, 2018.
 
The promotion is available worldwide with the following exceptions: China, Cuba, North Korea, Syria, Sudan and Iran

Source: AMD

Podcast #506 - HTC VIVE Pro, Ryzen V1000, and more!

Subject: General Tech | July 12, 2018 - 03:53 PM |
Tagged: podcast, vive pro, V1000, team group, Surface Go, sennheiser, seasonic, SD 7.0, sapphire, ryzen, rx vega, microsoft, m3b, hyperx, htc, gsp 600, flexispot, biostar, 5x5, video

PC Perspective Podcast #506 - 07/12/18

Join us this week for discussion on HTC VIVE Pro, Ryzen V1000, 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: http://pcper.com/podcast - Share with your friends!

Hosts: Ryan Shrout, Jeremy Hellstrom, Josh Walrath, Allyn Malventano

Peanut Gallery: Alex Lustenberg, Ken Addison

Program length: 1:17:23

Podcast topics of discussion:

  1. Week in Review:
  2. News items of interest:
  3. Picks of the Week:
    1. 0:58:15 Ryan: Mario Tennis Aces
    2. 1:00:20 Jeremy: Peak RGB, car underglow coming back next obviously
    3. 1:05:00 Allyn: Mobile Passport / Keep a spare capacitor for your HVAC (Turbo 200)
  4. Closing/outro
 
 
Source:

CES 2018: HP Spectre x360 15 Updated With Kaby Lake-G: 8th Gen Intel Core i7 CPUs Paired with Radeon RX Vega M Graphics

Subject: Mobile | January 8, 2018 - 03:01 AM |
Tagged: rx vega m, rx vega, radeon rx vega, laptop, kaby lake-g, Kaby Lake G, Intel, hp, convertible, CES 2018, CES, amd

HP today announced an update to its Spectre x360 15-inch convertible laptop, introducing a new model based on Intel's "Kaby Lake-G" platform: an 8th generation Core processor paired with integrated AMD Radeon RX Vega M graphics. For those who who need NVIDIA graphics, a model of the Spectre x360 15 with Kaby Lake-R processors and NVIDIA's GeForce MX150 is also available.

hp-spectre-x360-15-front.jpg

The new 2018 model of the Spectre x360 15 retains similar styling to its 2017 predecessor, but with a few important changes. Overall thickness is increased from 17.9mm to 19.45mm in order to accommodate the more powerful internal hardware (a change that HP advertises as "2.5X more performance for about a grain of rice thicker"), and the weight increases from 2017's 4.43lbs to 4.62lbs for the Kaby Lake-R model and 4.72lbs for Kaby Lake-G.

hp-spectre-x360-15-tablet.jpg

The 2018 model also sees a redesigned keyboard. The speaker grills that flanked the 2017 model's keyboard are gone in order to make room for a new edge-to-edge keyboard with numeric keypad. As a result, the laptop's touchpad is shifted left to remain centered with the main keyboard.

Other features include the 15.6-inch Corning Gorilla Glass touchscreen display with a 4K UHD resolution, an 84 Wh battery (good for 13.5 hours of battery life on the Kaby Lake-R model and 12 hours for Kaby Lake-G), USB 3.1 Type-A, HDMI 2.0, an SD Card Reader, and up to two Thunderbolt 3 ports depending on configuration.

hp-spectre-x360-15-side.jpg

Specs and pricing for the Spectre x360 15:

  KBL-R KBL-R KBL-G KBL-G
CPU 8th Gen Intel Core i7 8th Gen Intel Core i7 8th Gen Intel Core i7 8th Gen Intel Core i7
Memory 8GB RAM 16GB RAM 8GB RAM 16GB RAM
Graphics NVIDIA GeForce MX150 NVIDIA GeForce MX 150 Radeon RX Vega M Radeon RX Vega M
Storage 256GB SSD 512GB SSD 256GB SSD 512GB SSD
Display 15.6-inch UHD Touchscreen 15.6-inch UHD Touchscreen 15.6-inch UHD Touchscreen 15.6-inch UHD Touchscreen
Connectivity 1 x Thunderbolt 3
1 x USB Type-C 3.1
1 x USB Type-A 3.1
1 x HDMI 2.0
SD Card Reader
1 x Thunderbolt 3
1 x USB Type-C 3.1
1 x USB Type-A 3.1
1 x HDMI 2.0
SD Card Reader
2 x Thunderbolt 3
1 x USB Type-A 3.1
1 x HDMI 2.0
SD Card Reader
2 x Thunderbolt 3
1 x USB Type-A 3.1
1 x HDMI 2.0
SD Card Reader
Price $1369.99 $1599.99 $1449.99 $1699.99

Beyond the standard configurations shown above, storage upgrades up to 2TB will also be available, although upgrade pricing is not yet available. All models include the standard HP Pen, with the more advanced HP Tilt Pen available as a $90 accessory.

hp-spectre-x360-15-back.jpg

The HP Spectre x360 15 will be available starting March 18th from HP.com and Best Buy.

Source:

Podcast #480 - NVIDIA TITAN V Compute, Crucial MX500, and more!

Subject: General Tech | December 21, 2017 - 12:19 PM |
Tagged: podcast, x299, v-sync, titan v, sapphire, rx vega, optimus, nvidia, nitro+, MX500, msi, Intel, evga, crucial, CB-C55, AUKEY, ataribox, AT&T, apple, video

PC Perspective Podcast #480 - 12/21/17

Join us for discussion on NVIDIA TITAN V Compute, Crucial MX500, 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: http://pcper.com/podcast - Share with your friends!

Hosts: Ryan Shrout, Jeremy Hellstrom, Sebastion Peak, Allyn Malventano

Peanut Gallery: Ken Addison, Alex Lustenberg

Program length: 1:32:27

Podcast topics of discussion:

  1. Week in Review:
  2. News items of interest:
    1. 1:04:35 SAPPHIRE Releases NITRO+ Radeon RX Vega (64 & 56)
  3. Picks of the Week:
    1. 1:19:10 Ryan: HP Envy x360 Ryzen 5
    2. 1:24:35 Sebastian: Cooperstand Ecco-G
    3. 1:26:15 Allyn: IOT all of the tings! (16-relay Arduino)
  4. Closing/outro

Source:

ASUS Launches ROG Strix RX Vega 64 and 56 OC Edition Graphics Cards

Subject: Graphics Cards | December 4, 2017 - 10:10 PM |
Tagged: vega 64, vega 56, rx vega, ROG Strix, ASUS ROG, asus

ASUS is launching two new factory overclocked graphics cards with all of the RGB in the form of the ROG Strix RX Vega 64 and ROG Strix RX Vega 56. Measuring 11.73" x 2.58" x 2.07" these graphics cards are beastly 2.5 slot designs with large triple fan coolers. On the outside, the graphics cards have a black shroud with RGB LEDs around the fans, on the Strix side logo, and the ROG backplate logo. Asus is using a massive heatsink that is divided into two aluminum fin stacks that connect to a copper baseplate using five heatpipes each. The baseplate is reportedly 10% flatter for improved contact with the GPU. There are three fans to push air over the heatsinks that are of the dust resistant Wing-Blade variety.

ASUS ROG Strix RX Vega 64 with RGB LEDs.png

The cards have two 8-pin PCI-E power connectors feeding ASUS' Super Alloy Power II VRMs. Other connectors include hybrid fan headers for system fans and an Aurora Sync RGB LED header. Display outputs are "VR Ready" and include two HDMI, two DisplayPort, and a single DVI output.

While ASUS has not yet revealed clockspeeds on the RX Vega 56 card, eTeknix has gotten their hands on the ROG Strix RX Vega 64 graphics card and figured out the clocks for that card. Specifically, the Vega 64 card clocks its 4096 GPU cores at 1298 MHz base and 1590 MHz boost. The site further lists the memory clockspeed at 945 MHz which doesn't appear to be overclocked as it matches the referece Vega 64 HBM2 clocks of 1890 MHz. Users can use the GPU Tweak II software to push the card further on their own though.

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ASUS has not yet revealed pricing or exact availability dates but expect them to sell out fast and over MSRP when they do surface thanks to the resurgance of GPU mining! With that said it is promising that we are finally seeing factory overclocked cards being announced!

Also read:

Source: eTeknix

Forza Motorsport 7 Performance

The first full Forza Motorsport title available for the PC, Forza Motorsport 7 on Windows 10 launched simultaneously with the Xbox version earlier this month. With native 4K assets, HDR support, and new visual features like fully dynamic weather, this title is an excellent showcase of what modern PC hardware can do.

forza7-screen.png

Now that both AMD and NVIDIA have released drivers optimized for Forza 7, we've taken an opportunity to measure performance across an array of different GPUs. After some significant performance mishaps with last year's Forza Horizon 3 at launch on PC, we are excited to see if Forza Motorsport 7 brings any much-needed improvements. 

For this testing, we used our standard GPU testbed, including an 8-core Haswell-E processor and plenty of memory and storage.

  PC Perspective GPU Testbed
Processor Intel Core i7-5960X Haswell-E
Motherboard ASUS Rampage V Extreme X99
Memory G.Skill Ripjaws 16GB DDR4-3200
Storage OCZ Agility 4 256GB (OS)
Adata SP610 500GB (games)
Power Supply Corsair AX1500i 1500 watt
OS Windows 10 x64 
Drivers AMD: 17.10.1 (Beta)
NVIDIA: 387.92

As with a lot of modern console-first titles, Forza 7 defaults to "Dynamic" image quality settings. This means that the game engine is supposed to find the best image settings for your hardware automatically, and dynamically adjust them so that you hit a target frame rate (adjustable between 30 and 60fps) no matter what is going on in the current scene that is being rendered.

While this is a good strategy for consoles, and even for casual PC gamers, it poses a problem for us trying to measure equivalent performance across GPUs. Luckily the developers of Forza Motorsport 7, Turn 10 Studios, still let you disable the dynamic control and configure the image quality settings as you desire.

One quirk however though is that in order for V-Sync to be disabled, the rendering resolution within the game must match the native resolution of your monitor. This means that if you are running 2560x1440 on your 4K monitor, you must first set the resolution within windows to 2560x1440 in order to run the game in V-Sync off mode.

forza7-settings.png

We did our testing with an array of three different resolutions (1080p, 1440p, and 4K) at maximum image quality settings. We tested both AMD and NVIDIA graphics cards in similar price and performance segments. The built-in benchmark mode for this game was used, which does feature some variance due to dynamic weather patterns. However, our testing within the full game matched the results of the benchmark mode closely, so we used it for our final results.

forza7-avgfps.png

Right off the bat, I have been impressed at how well optimized Forza Motorsport 7 seems to be on the PC. Compared to the unoptimized disaster that was Forza Horizon 3 when it launched on PC last year, it's clear that Turn 10 Studios and Microsoft have come a long way.

Even gamers looking to play on a 4K display at 60Hz can seemingly get away with the cheaper, and more mainstream GPUs such as the RX 580 or the GTX 1060 with acceptable performance in most scenarios.

Games on high-refresh-rate displays don't appear to have the same luxury. If you want to game at a resolution such as 2560x1440 at a full 144Hz, neither the RX Vega 64 or GTX 1080 will do this with maximum image quality settings. Although these GPUs appear to be in the margin where you could turn down a few settings to achieve your full refresh rate.

For some reason, the RX Vega cards didn't seem to show any scaling in performance when moving from 2560x1440 to 1920x1080, unlike the Polaris-based RX 580 and the NVIDIA options. We aren't quite sure of the cause of this and have reached out to AMD for clarification.

As far as frame times are concerned, we also gathered some data with our Frame Rating capture analysis system

Forza7_2560x1440_PLOT.png

Forza7_2560x1440_STUT.png

Taking a look at the first chart, we can see while the GTX 1080 frame times are extremely consistent, the RX Vega 64 shows some additional variance.

However, the frame time variance chart shows that over 95% of the frame times of the RX Vega 64 come in at under 2ms of variance, which will still provide a smooth gameplay experience in most scenarios. This matches with our experience while playing on both AMD and NVIDIA hardware where we saw no major issues with gameplay smoothness.

forza7-screen2.png

Forza Motorsport 7 seems to be a great addition to the PC gaming world (if you don't mind using the Microsoft store exclusively) and will run great on a wide array of hardware. Whether or not you have a NVIDIA or AMD GPU, you should be able to enjoy this fantastic racing simulator. 

Podcast #464 - Vega Redux, Intel 8th Gen Core, and more!

Subject: General Tech | August 24, 2017 - 11:24 AM |
Tagged: vulkan, vlan, video, samsung galaxy note 8, rx vega, podcast, Linksys WRT32x, kaby lake, Intel, ice lake, htc vive, ECS, Core, asus zenphone 4, acer predator z271t

PC Perspective Podcast #464 - 08/17/17

Join us for continued discussion on RX Vega, Intel 8th Gen 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: http://pcper.com/podcast - Share with your friends!

Hosts: Ryan Shrout, Jeremy Hellstrom, Josh Walrath, Allyn Malventano

Peanut Gallery: Ken Addison, Alex Lustenberg

Program length: 1:34:56

Podcast topics of discussion:
  1. Week in Review:
    1. 0:07:54 Let’s talk about RX Vega!
      1. My Review
      2. Pricing concerns
      3. Availability
      4. Different die packages
      5. Locked BIOS
  2. News items of interest:
  3. Hardware/Software Picks of the Week
    1. 1:26:45 Allyn: Razer Blade
  4. Closing/outro
 

Source: