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Subject: General Tech | August 11, 2009 - 06:08 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
There are many times when a PC just does not need that beautiful 7.1 speaker system plugged into it, and many people who are not terribly enamoured of headphones; which is why we still have 2.0 speaker systems around. Many are absolute garbage, especially if the are made by a company you have never heard of and are handed out free with the purchase of anything. Others, like the Eagletech ET-AR302-BK 2.0 soundstage speakers
are a pleasant surprise. For only $20 you get a pair of desktop speakers that Elite Bastards describe as 'acceptable quality for office or decidedly causa
Subject: Cases and Cooling | August 11, 2009 - 05:22 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Lake Forest, IL – August 11, 2009 – BFG Technologies, a leading supplier of premium power supplies and 3D graphics cards, is excited to announce the new EX-1000, 1000 watt modular power supply. The EX Series ushers in a new approach to power supply design, utilizing BFG’s proprietary Frequency Conversion Technology. Frequency Conversion Technology drastically improves low load efficiency by emulating a lower sized power supply. This allows the EX-1000 to remain at least 80% efficient, even with loads as low as 10% of the unit’s maximum capacity.
Subject: General Tech | August 11, 2009 - 03:45 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
If you are looking for a new game mouse, or are perhaps wondering if you should try one, the $25 OCZ Behemoth might just be the answer you seek. It sports 5 buttons, two lasers, removable weights, on the fly DPI switching from 800 to 3200 with an LED that tells you which DPI you are on as well as a bit of memory so that you can have different profiles for different games. Mouse reviews are very subjective, but
Subject: Systems | August 11, 2009 - 03:17 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
nMEDIA has been making a name for themselves making HTPC cases, with their 2000B model being up for review at The Tech Report. The B in this model name denotes a black finish, there is also an S model if silver is more your thing. Standing 17" x 16.4" x 6.6" should give you enough room for cooling and components without being so large as to look awkward in a living room entertainment centre and they use drop down pan
Subject: Storage | August 11, 2009 - 01:47 PM | Allyn Malventano
The Flash Memory Summit has just begun, and to kick things off, Intel and Micron have announced something unexpected: 3 bit per cell flash memory. This is significant on many levels (pun intended). SLC (single level cell) flash is 1 bpc. The vast majority of MLC (multi level cell) flash is 2 bpc, netting a 100% capacity gain over SLC. This new flash is 3 bpc, pushing bit density to 200% over SLC and 50% over previous generation MLC flash.
Subject: Motherboards | August 11, 2009 - 12:28 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
While other sites are previewing P55 motherboards that support the currently unobtainable i5 processor series. Hardware Canucks is instead reviewing a new take on an old chipset. The Blood Iron P45-T2RS Elite
is for those still using LGA775 chips like the C2D Xeon E3110 they used to benchmark the board.
Subject: General Tech | August 11, 2009 - 11:44 AM | Jeremy Hellstrom
The newest kids on the street from AMD have arrived and promptly embedded themselves in the Atom's market. They use a ball grid array design which gives away the fact that they are designed to be embedded. The 18W power draw hints at the small size of the products you are likely to see powered by the Turion Neo X2 L625 and Athlon Neo X2 L325 and the 3W demanded by the matching M690T
chipsets back that hint up. They will both support dual channel ECC-enabled U-DIMM DDR2-667, sport 64KB L1 cache and 512KB L2 cache and have one 16-bit link supporting up to 800MHzHype
Subject: Storage | August 10, 2009 - 07:52 PM | Allyn Malventano
Kingston has informed us of a new addition to their SSDNow V series line. The new "V+" series incorporate Samsung RBB controllers and will be available in the usual Samsung sizes (64 / 128 / 256 GB). They will also sport a 3 year warranty. This will add Kingston to another section of our SSD Decoder during its next update.
Subject: Storage | August 10, 2009 - 07:39 PM | Allyn Malventano
For those who managed to sneak an early purchase of an Intel X25-M G2 series SSD, there is now a firmware update available for your downloading pleasure. Please ensure you update prior to updating or removing any BIOS HDD password you might have set since your purchase. Once updated, you are free to do whatever you wish with said password (except forget it, of course). This u
Subject: Systems | August 10, 2009 - 05:27 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
SmoothCreations is gaining a big name in the enthusiast crowd, as most systems are done just right. Quality builds with seriously powerful components are just part of the parcel, there is also the incredible paint jobs that grace the outside of their cases. New at the Guru of 3D is the LANShark, sporting a skull motif and side panel made entirely of acrylic. Inside you find an i7 965, a GTX 295 and 6GB of OCZ DDR3-1600 and a Rampage II Gene motherboard, though you can customize the parts if you plan on ordering one. The CPU is cooled via a Cool It Pure H2O
and the res
Subject: Cases and Cooling | August 10, 2009 - 03:22 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Ikonik's Ra series of cases are large sized and usually focused on water cooling. The newest, the Ikonik Ra X10 SIM does not come with a water cooling setup, it is for the air cooling control freak. This case is 20lbs of aluminum and comes with a a single 140mm, a pair of 120mm, and 10 80mm fans. The SIM part of its name denotes the software which allows you to control all of the fans in various mods, such as Silent for those loving quiet, to Performance mode for you overclockers out there. The review of this fancy white fu
Subject: Storage | August 10, 2009 - 02:38 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Allyn has been hard at work on the new OZC Vertex custom Indilinx firmware
which enables garbage collection, perhaps one of the most interesting features an SSD can have. Think of it as a way for SSDs to heal themselves from the damage of file transfers and deletions that defragmenting took care of on platter based drives. Allyn subjects the poor drive to his custom made SSD killing test and watched in amazement as the drive healed its self over time without his needing to repair it.
Subject: Displays | August 10, 2009 - 12:29 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
If you are upgrading your monitor, you might want to consider picking up one of those neat new stereoscopic 3D monitors like the Samsung SyncMaster 2233RZ.
Digital Trends tried out this 1680x1050 22", which also necessitates possession of a pair of NVIDA GeForce 3D Vision glasses plus a compatible NVDIA graphics card and Windows Vista, perhaps Win7 will work but it was not tested. The 3ms response rate as well as the abili
Subject: General Tech | August 10, 2009 - 12:04 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Some rather bright German researchers have been perfecting the printable battery and figure to be on course for a 2010 release. Using a silk screening process they impregnate paper with many hair thin layers of zinc to form an anode and manganese for the cathode.
Subject: Editorial | August 8, 2009 - 11:58 PM | Ryan Shrout
Sorry for the longer than normal delay, but I finally got this week's This Week in Computer Hardware (TWiCH) online, episode #34 with myself and Leo Laporte. Enjoy!
If you want to catch our weekly LIVE episodes, just check back here on pcper.com or at http://live.twit.tv/ every Wednesday at 6pm ET!
(Details on Quakecon and possible live streaming of that event are included as well!)
Subject: Processors | August 8, 2009 - 06:03 PM | Ryan Shrout
Now this is getting to be just plain funny. Intel still hasn't gotten us our official Lynnfield processor samples but they are apparently showing up for sale in retail form already! Not in the US mind you, but somewhere.
Subject: General Tech | August 7, 2009 - 06:56 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
The PC Perspective Hardware Leaderboard, which you should keep an eye on for updates in the near future, is a great way to look at what parts are out there that can assemble a great PC at several price levels. Some enthusiasts need a bit more detail, like which southbridge can handle which flavour of RAID; others need a bit more guidance to welcome them into the world of the DIY PC.
Subject: Cases and Cooling | August 7, 2009 - 02:59 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
At $53 the Aerocool Touch 2000 Touch Panel offers quite a bit to the enthusiast that wants a front panel both stellar looking and functional. One e-SATA and two USB plugs plus mic and headphone
jacks accompany a touch interface that lets you control four fans and monitor temperatures in four different places inside your case. If that sounds like something that would interest you,
Subject: Graphics Cards | August 7, 2009 - 12:37 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
The AMD FirePro V8750 has arrived, bringing with it the first incarnation of Crossfire Pro, the equivalent of Crossfire X for production level cards. It is not quite as flexible, allowing only a pair of cards to be used and the cards must match exactly, though you do not need a V8750, the V5700, V7750, and V8700
will also benefit from having a twin. The big question on Phoronix's mind is how this card performs under Linux, specifically Ubuntu 9.04. Their first disappointment was the lack of Crossfire Pro support; on the plus side the card was recognized immediately. <
Subject: General Tech | August 7, 2009 - 12:11 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
The version of Windows 7 available via TechNet or MSDN subscription is now missing the Release Candidate part of its name, the final code has been spit and polished and sent out the door to make its way in the world. As well, today is the day that volume licensed customers get their hands on Windows 7. They are the first to get their hands on the official version of the software and the first valid keys. Of course, those customers never tend to see a disk, so we still can't see the box art in the flesh, if you are into that type of thing.