Stop me if you've heard this one

Subject: Storage | April 14, 2009 - 12:07 PM |

Back in February, Allyn was writing his first review for PC Perspective, a review of the new Intel X-25 M SSDs.  As he tested their various speeds, he began noticing some odd behaviour from the shiny new SSDs.  At the start of the testing the drives were incredibly fast, but over time the performance degraded significantly.

Talking with the asset part of 'Asset Smart'

Subject: General Tech | April 14, 2009 - 11:39 AM |

X-bit Labs had a chance to sit down and talk with Tom Sonderman, Vice President, Manufacturing Systems and Technology at Globalfoundries.  As comes naturally to a VP at a relatively new company, there is a bit of market speak and spiel in the interview, but it also touches on the 32nm process that the Fab in Dresden is currently producing.  Read what else they touched on in the full interview.

Source: X-Bit Labs

Four ways to an AM3

Subject: Motherboards | April 13, 2009 - 05:12 PM |

The Asus M4A78T-E, Gigabyte's GA-MA790FXT-UD5P, a Jetway HA08 and MSI's 790FX-GD70 are all compared in a big motherboar

You can teach an old notebook new tricks

Subject: Mobile | April 13, 2009 - 04:37 PM |

I4U decided that an aging Thinkpad X40 could use an upgrade to an SSD for both the performance enhancements and the noise reduction it would bring.  Specifically, they picked a KingSpec SSD which will supposedly just drop in and work.  It's a 1.8" MLC SSD that claims average access times of

0.2ms, sustained read

of 65MB/S

and write

at 47MB/S.  While i4U didn't get around to benchmarking the drive, they did prove just how easy it is to get a lot more from your X40, X41 or X41T.

Source: I4U News

A chill way to use phase change cooling

Subject: Cases and Cooling | April 13, 2009 - 04:03 PM |

When you think of setting up an active phase change cooling system, you tend to be planning to get a big overclock on an high end gaming system.  [H]ard||OCP is going at it in a different way, using a Thermaltake Xaser VI case in conjunction with a Xpressar Refrigeration System to create a very quiet running system with a mild overclock.  As it turns out, while that is certainly a possibility, the Xpressar is powerful enough to handle a big overclock by

Source: [H]ard|OCP

Peeking at the new Lenovo mobile products

Subject: General Tech | April 13, 2009 - 03:43 PM |

Hardware Zone got a peek at Intel's new notebooks and desktop system at CES.  The two Ideapads will use C2D processors and DDR3, with the larger Y650 using the Intel GMA X4500MHD GPU to power its 16" screen, the smaller 14" Y450 uses both a GeForce GT series GPU and an integrated Intel GMA X4500 GPU.  Also on display was the IdeaCentre A600 All-In-One Desktop PC, which will house a C2D T6600 and up to 4GB of DDR3 in a 21.5-inch "frameless" screen/casing.  It will also sport a BluRay pl

PC Perspective on TWiT Live: Episode 20

Subject: Editorial | April 11, 2009 - 11:36 AM |

If you missed my weekly show on TWiT Live (
Leo Laporte yesterday, we have the entirety of the show now
available for you here.  In this episode we discussed the AMD Radeon HD 4890 and GeForce GTX 275, the ION-based Acer AspireRevo, AMD's Fusion Media Explorer, the netbook market hurting Intel's notebook market, SSD goodies and a bit more!

First Look at Larrabee Wafer

Subject: Graphics Cards | April 10, 2009 - 06:23 PM |

Hardware FR attended Intel's IDF in China this year and they came away with the first photographic evidence of the existence of a finished Larrabee processor.  Near the end of their article, they have a picture of Pat Gelsinger hoisting up a 12 inch (300 mm) wafer full of supposed Larrabee dies.  While the picture is somewhat grainy, we can see that each individual die is very large.  Hardware FR believes that each individual die is around 600 mm square.  After squinting at the picture I count

UW PC Gamers LANFest Change of Venue

Subject: Cases and Cooling | April 10, 2009 - 04:51 PM |

Unfortunately renting out the ice rink in Laramie was a bust, so they are moving the LANFest to the brand new Hilton Garden Inn and Conference Center.  This is located at 2229 Grand Avenue in Laramie, and should be a bit of an upgrade from the ice rink.  Apparently power issues and dealing with the City of Laramie made this a no-go at the last minute.

Not exactly the best branding

Subject: Cases and Cooling | April 9, 2009 - 03:06 PM |

Sapphire, one of the biggest and oldest ATI partners is branching out into new and unexpected areas.  They've just announced the Sapphire FirePSU 625W, a fancy looking, if poorly named PSU.  The voltage supplied is relatively stable, the noise it produces is very reasonable and there is even a nice LED light behind the fan.  The only thing Elite Bastards didn't find out about the PSU is it's pricing and availability.

Stepping around old obstacles

Subject: Processors | April 9, 2009 - 01:17 PM |

The Core i7 920 CPU has a new stepping, D0, and it promises to annihilate the old overclocking records.  AnandTech has put up a preview of it's performance and it is an impressive change from the previous C0 stepping CPUs.  They hit 4.309 GHz with memory running at 2052 @ 7-8-7-20 1T, and they did it with noticeably lower
power requirements.  Check out just how much lower they were here.

Source: AnandTech

It's a bird ... it's a plane ... it's SuperPipe!!!

Subject: Graphics Cards | April 9, 2009 - 11:55 AM |

As you can tell someone is a doctor if they have the right letters after their last name, you can tell a graphics card is not a reference model if it has a posse from Alphabet Street following it around.  For instance, the MSI N285GTX SuperPipe OC does not run at spec, but then again, it doesn't beat stock speeds by much.  The GPU is 680MHz, 32MHz higher than stock, while the memory is 2.5GHz having been pushed up half as much as the GPU, a whole 16MHz.  They didn't even touch the shader clock.  [H]ard|OCP was able to push the card beyond that point and the cooling solution

Source: [H]ard|OCP

Is it OK to stop panicking now?

Subject: General Tech | April 9, 2009 - 11:32 AM |

The Conficker worm has finally managed to something more than make people snicker at it's name; it's using P2P to transfer encrypted files.  The  chances are very good that it is doing so to update its self via the bot net it created.  As far as the infection goes, if you somehow managed to catch it and not get rid of it, then you have a keylogger or something similar on your system.  After May 3rd, the worm will go dormant and stop spreading, but infected machines will remain a problem. 

Source: The Inquirer

Highlights of the ATI Catalyst 9.4 Windows release

Subject: Graphics Cards | April 8, 2009 - 03:20 PM |

New Features

  • ATI Catalyst 9.4 - New ATI OverDrive auto-tuning application
  • ATI Catalyst 9.4 includes a new ATI Overdrive auto-tune application to estimate the over-clocked engine and memory values for ATI Overdrive supported ATI Radeon Graphics accelerators
  • Designed for the ATI Radeon HD 4000 Series

Resolved Issue Highlights

Source: AMD

It's a mixed platter of results

Subject: Storage | April 8, 2009 - 02:52 PM |

The new Seagate Barracuda 7200.12s have a few advantages over the previous generation.  There is no bad firmware to give this generation a bad name, as well they have made a move to 500GB platters for this generation.  Bjorn3D's testing showed that the move did not result in a clear improvement; speed for burst and read seems to have decreased, while the write speed has increased.  On the other hand, once in a RAID environment the drives showed improvements from the previous generation, in addition to needing

Source: Bjorn3D

A unique way to grill cheese

Subject: Cases and Cooling | April 8, 2009 - 01:42 PM |

[H]ard|OCP has assembled a thermal paste round up, including nine popular pastes from heatsink makers, one from an industrial supply company and a slice of American Cheese.  They tested the pastes over a range of time to see the performance change as they become cured, both under normal loads as well as overclocking performance.  Also included is a link to a video on how to properly apply thermal paste, so [H] tested all pastes with a center drop as well as a thin coat.  Head ov

Source: [H]ard|OCP

Get your console fix without the dirty feeling

Subject: General Tech | April 8, 2009 - 12:18 PM |

Battlefield Bad Company has been around on the console for a little while, causing a bit of frustration from the PC gamers who have supported EA's Battlefield franchise since 1942.  It's sequel will soon be arriving for the PC, this time happening on the Russian border, which is perfect to show off the new Frostbite engine.  Full deformable
terrain will also be around, hopefully in a meaningful way and not simply as decoration.  Check out a preview of the single player game at GamingHeaven


Super Talent Announces World's First Commercially Available 512GB 2.5-Inch SSD

Subject: Cases and Cooling | April 8, 2009 - 11:57 AM |

San Jose, California - April 8, 2009 - Super Talent Technology, a leading manufacturer of Flash storage solutions and DRAM memory modules, today announced that it is now shipping the MasterDrive RX family of Solid State Drives (SSDs) in capacities up to 512GB.

The MasterDrive RX features Super Talent's proprietary RAIDSSD Technology to enable extremely fast sequential read and write speeds.

Source: 3DCenter

Yes, Windows Update will still work for you

Subject: General Tech | April 8, 2009 - 11:47 AM |

Over the next two weeks you will likely see a big pile o' FUD appear because of the imminent end of free support for Windows XP and Office 2003.  First off, that applies only to the residential/consumer level, business support is to remain the same, although if your company runs Server 2003 it had better be upgraded to SP2. 
The second thing to remember is that this applies to direct support from Microsoft, such as bug reports and their incident reporting program, Windows Update will still be bringing you critical security patches until 2014. 

Source: The Register

1-Year Intel Atom Anniversary Brings New Chips, Demonstration of Next-Generation Device

Subject: Processors | April 8, 2009 - 11:11 AM |

BEIJING, April 8, 2009 - Celebrating the 1-year anniversary of Intel Corporation's introduction of its wildly popular Intel Atom processor family, Anand Chandrasekher, Intel senior vice president and general manager of the Ultra Mobility Group, introduced two new processors for Mobile Internet Devices (MIDs) and several other milestones during his keynote today at the Intel Developer Forum in Beijing.

Chandrasekher was joined by two other Intel executives, Craig Barrett and Pat Gelsinger,