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Subject: Motherboards | February 9, 2009 - 03:09 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
The top of the line X58 motherboard from Gigabyte is the GA-EX58-UD5, and the lower end is the P45 based GigaByte GA-EP45-UD3P. Now their is a middle brother in the series, the new EX58-UD4 which has almost all the extras that the UD4P model has except support for multiple nVIDIA graphics cards, basic Crossfire will work just
Subject: Graphics Cards | February 9, 2009 - 02:31 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
LeadTek's WinFast GTX 285 runs at the reference clock speeds, 648MHz GPU and 1GB of 2484MHz GDDR3. You can expect to see it sucking down about 380W under full load, and a temperature of 80C with the fan at 40%. If you are OK with the extra noise it creates, cranking the fan up to full power will drop your temperatures to 67C, still fairly warm but certainly reasonable for the fastest single GPU card going. You will need that extra cooling if you want to overclock the card as much as Bjorn3D did in their
Subject: Processors | February 9, 2009 - 12:43 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Before you start off on Josh's detailed review of the new Phenom II processors, consider the good side of this release; the 2.8GHz X3 720 BE should sell for a bit over $150, the 2.6GHz X4 810 (not unlocked BE) will be under $200. That puts them in competition with the Intel E8500 and similarly priced chips, it is not a Corei7 killer, the cheapest Core i7 920 is still almost $300 and that doesn't include the price of the motherboard. Any AM3 chip will fit in any AM3 or AM2+ socket, making this an incredibly painless upgrade. Now that you are armed with the knowledge of what AM
Subject: General Tech | February 9, 2009 - 12:14 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
It has been rumoured for a while now that nVIDIA will be developing an x86 processor, backed up by their recent headhunting activities. PC Authority has gathered a couple of links on the history as well as a theory on how they will try to develop the chip.
Subject: General Tech | February 6, 2009 - 06:01 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
The middle child always has it rough and the Corei7 family is no different. Those who can afford it buy the 965, while every one else chooses the 920. One member wonders why exactly it is that no one buys the 940. Even if you know the answer it is worth a drop by to compare your clock speeds to others. The faster CPU can help out when you are gaming, as it does take a lot to keep a GTX 295 fully fed, which is why a membe
Subject: Cases and Cooling | February 6, 2009 - 03:19 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Until you actually look inside the Silverstone Raven, it looks like a normal case with some nice detailing on it and an interestingly placed power and reset button. When you see a motherboard installed you realize there is more to this case than is obvious at first glance; the motherboard is rotated 90 degrees clockwise. This places your expansion cards at the very top of the case, very handy for graphics cards with an air outlet, as the hot air is headed up and away from the case from the get go. The PSU is placed in the bottom, along with the intake fans, the exhaust is at
Subject: Memory | February 6, 2009 - 02:04 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
The new Kingston HyperX Triple Channel 6GB DDR3 kit runs with timings of 8-8-8-24 at 2GHz. Bjorn3D tried a slew of different timings and speeds in order to see how the performance scales, and boy does it ever scale. Sporting blue heat spreaders as tall as the DIMM it's self, some motherboard layouts may prove problematic, but the performance will make this a very popular kit. You can see their numbers, and new records here.
Subject: General Tech | February 6, 2009 - 12:13 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
When last we heard of Hercules, they were a partner of ATI, building their own take on the 9xxx series. They've not gone out of business, they merely refocused on other components such as the audio subsystem. Their Hercules XPS 2.1 50 speakers won't compete with 7.1 systems, but as far as other 2.1 speaker kits go Hercules has done an incredible job. The look is a far cry from the off white boxes that one would usually think of as
Subject: General Tech | February 6, 2009 - 11:49 AM | Jeremy Hellstrom
The Better Business Bureau has been a longstanding proponent of consumer protection. Almost everyone has heard of them at one point or another and some people may have even used their complaint process, except perhaps for PC parts. NGOHQ was idly searching through the BBB website and happened to search for nVIDIA, who as it turns out is rated an "F". As you might think, the "F" rating implies some rather dirty pool being played on nVIDIA's part. Amuse yourse
Subject: Systems | February 5, 2009 - 06:13 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
By now you are likely used to system build recommendations on hardware review sites, like our own Hardware Leaderboard, with several suggested builds at various price points. bit-tech has put together a guide that is similar, with one significant difference, the three builds they recommend are all intended to be used as HTPCs. They range from a design meant to take up as little space as possible, to an affordable system to an HTPC that can handle gaming.
Subject: Processors | February 5, 2009 - 02:16 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
You still have some time to pick up the QX9650 and QX9770, but not much longer. Whether the discontinuation will help the sales of Intel's new Core i7 processors is something we won't know for a while, nor if we will see steep price cuts soon. Thanks to TG Daily for breaking the news to us gently.
Subject: Memory | February 5, 2009 - 02:08 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Fremont, CA, February 5th, 2009 - Corsair, a worldwide leader in high-performance computer and flash memory products, today announced the launch of the new Dominator GT line of ultra high-performance DDR3 memory modules for Intel Core i7-based systems.
Sporting a new racing red color scheme and the next-generation of Corsair's patent-pending Dual-path Heat eXchange (DHX) technology, the new Dominator GT comes in 3-up 6GB kit, running at 2000MHz with latencies of 7-8-7.
Subject: Storage | February 5, 2009 - 01:57 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
If you are looking for a way to hot swap SATA drives and provide both a cooling fan and a security lock, you could consider the Icy Dock MB671SK Internal SATA HDD Enclosure. For under $50 you can pick up this internal enclosure that will handle terabyte drives and
keep them nice and cool, with absolutely no read or write speed penalties. If you are a swapper, or you would just like to be you should
Subject: Graphics Cards | February 5, 2009 - 12:09 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
New from BFG is the GeForce GTX 285 OCX, a factory overclocked GTX285
with a core of 648MHz, the shader is 1.476GHz and GDDR3 of 2.484GHz. All the other specs remain the same, which may be why the only benefit [H]ard|OCP saw was a handfull of extra frames, but not much more. It is up to you whether the small gains they
Subject: Cases and Cooling | February 5, 2009 - 11:44 AM | Jeremy Hellstrom
A company called Danger was picked up by Microsoft last year, sparking talk of a Zune phone and other speculations as people tried to figure out why Microsoft would purchase the company that made the Sidekick. Now it seems that not only is Microsoft working on the Sidekick 2.0, it will utilize NetBSD an open source OS. This move seems contrary to the basic philosophy that Microsoft has had since the inception of the OSS movement, though it certainly doesn't preclude Microsoft from closing the phone once the code has been developed.
Subject: Mobile | February 4, 2009 - 02:46 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
If you need a laptop that can handle media, but won't break your bank account, the Acer Extensa 5630G is worth a peek. The C2D T5800 @ 2GHz is nowhere near top of the line now, but certainly offers enough power to do what you would need and the ATI Radeon HD3470 will help ensure your graphical experience is not distressing. InsideHW did wish it had Bluetooth functionality, but
Subject: General Tech | February 4, 2009 - 12:33 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
While Gamepyre may not remember the name Jagged Alliance, the game had enough impact to give a sense of deja vu when confronted with Hired Guns - The Jagged Edge. For those that are familiar with that ageing series and the successful mods like Urban Chaos, Hired Guns offers an end to a very long wait for Strategy First to work on Jagged Alliance 3. If you have no idea what these games are, you may not be a fan of turn based tactical squad combat and are probably happy to see Fallout turn into an FPS. On the other hand, if you enjoy micromanaging a squad or sqauds into taking
Subject: General Tech | February 4, 2009 - 12:07 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
There is a handy little trick that Windows 7 beta testers have been using fairly reliably that makes beta testing the new OS a lot more interesting. If you are installing a driver for a system component and 7 presents you with compatibility errors, simply right click on the .exe file and choose "Troubleshoot Compatibility".
That brings up a wizard that you can go through to tell 7 to install the driver in Vista compatibility mode
and you are ready to go. You can see picture