Living in VIVO 24K, a unique looking PSU

Subject: Cases and Cooling | February 17, 2017 - 06:13 PM |
Tagged: modular psu, VIVO, VIVO 24K, 650W, 80 Plus Gold

VIVO is certainly not a top of mind brand name, which is part of the reason [H]ard|OCP were interested in reviewing their 24K 650W PSU.  The top, front and back of the PSU feature a honeycombed design which not only give it a unique look but also help with ventilation.  The test results from this newcomer were a pleasant surprise; it measured up to the established competition, offering good power delivery and deserving of the advertised 80 PLUS Gold rating.  It is nice to see a new product measure up straight out of the gates, it will be worth keeping an eye on VIVO in the future.

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"VIVO is likely not a brand name that you are familiar with when it comes to enthusiast-level computer power supplies. We were not familiar with the VIVO name assuredly and its single PSU offering. All the more reason to put it through our PSU testing gauntlet when VIVO asked us to. Will VIVO regret putting its value brand PSU to the test?"

Here are some more Cases & Cooling reviews from around the web:

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Source: [H]ard|OCP

Anidees AI Crystal Tempered Glass Chassis, so shiny it is hard to photograph

Subject: Cases and Cooling | February 13, 2017 - 01:14 PM |
Tagged: anidees, tempered glass, AI Crystal

Much like HDR displays and VR, it can be hard to show what a tempered glass case looks like with just a few pictures but that is exactly what eTeknix set out to do in this review.  The case is quite large, e-ATX motherboards are supported and the three fans at the front of the case are all 140mm as is the one in the back, with room for three more if you so desire.  There is also an integral fan controller, with the three modes easily accessible on the top of the case. The PSU is hidden under a shroud, SSDs are mounted on the back of the case and decent cable management ensure that your see-through system is worth looking at. 

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"There’s a big trend in the chassis market this last year or so, as more and more brands shift from plastic side panel windows, to huge chunks of tempered glass. If you really care about having a system that looks like a premium quality product, and having a great way to show off your new build and hardware, then tempered glass is the way to go."

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Source: eTeknix
Manufacturer: PC Perspective

Introduction

Mini-STX is the newest, smallest PC form-factor that accepts a socketed CPU, and in this review we'll be taking a look at a complete mini-STX build that will occupy just 1.53 liters of space. With a total size of just 6.1 x 5.98 x 2.56 inches, the SilverStone VT01 case offers a very small footprint, and the ECS H110S-2P motherboard accepts Intel desktop CPUs up to 65W (though I may have ignored this specification).

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PS3 controller for scale. (And becuase it's the best controller ever.)

The Smallest Form-Factor

The world of small form-factor PC hardware is divided between tiny kit solutions such as the Intel NUC (and the host of mini-PCs from various manufacturers), and the mini-ITX form-factor for system builders. The advantage of mini-ITX is its ability to host standard components, such as desktop-class processors and full-length graphics cards. However, mini-ITX requires a significantly larger enclosure than a mini-PC, and the "thin mini-ITX" standard has been something of a bridge between the two, essentially halving the height requirement of mini-ITX. Now, an even smaller standard has emerged, and it almost makes mini-ITX look big in comparison.

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Left: ECS H110S-2P (mini-STX) / Right: EVGA Z170 Stinger (mini-ITX)

Mini-STX had been teased for a couple of years (I wrote my first news post about it in January of 2015), and was originally an Intel concept called "5x5"; though the motherboard is actually about 5.8 x 5.5 inches (147 x 140 mm). At CES 2016 I was able to preview a SilverStone enclosure design for these systems, and ECS is one of the manufacturers producing mini-STX motherboards with an Intel H110-based board introduced this past summer. We saw some shipping products for the newest form-factor in 2016, and both companies were kind enough to send along a sample of these micro-sized components for a build. With the parts on hand it is now time to assemble my first mini-STX system, and of course I'll cover the process - and results - right here!

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Continue reading our review of a mini-STX computer build featuring ECS and SilverStone!

Noctua announces three new AM4 CPU coolers for AMD Ryzen

Subject: Cases and Cooling | February 2, 2017 - 02:34 PM |
Tagged: Socket AM4, ryzen, noctua, NH-U12S SE-AM4, NH-L9x65 SE-AM4, NH-D15 SE-AM4, amd

If you are already planning your new AMD Ryzen build and are wondering what gigantic brown and tan coolers might work then Noctua has a page that will make you smile.  They have listed all of their current coolers which can be made compatible with AM4 using a free adapter which you can order from that page.  They also list some which could be made compatible but are not eligible for the free adapter and those which will not work at all.

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Along with the compatibility list comes three brand new coolers, which you can see larger than life by clicking on their names.  The NH-D15 SE-AM4 is a contender for Morry's next favourite cooler for mATX boards, 980g of metal and that is before you add the two 140mm fans.  The NH-U12S SE-AM4 is slimmer 580g but is still 158mm tall and will use a 120mm fan.  For those who prefer their coolers in petite sizes the NH-L9x65 SE-AM4 is a svelte 340g and stands a mere 65mm while wearing its custom fit 92mm fan

You can pick them up soon, the NH-D15 SE-AM4 at $99.90, NH-U12S SE-AM4 for $64.90
and the NH-L9x65 SE-AM4 at $52.90.  PR below the fold.

Source: Noctua

EVGA's new EVGA CLC 120 and 280 Liquid Coolers

Subject: Cases and Cooling | February 1, 2017 - 03:57 PM |
Tagged: water cooler, evga, clc 280, clc 120, all in one

EVGA have just released two new All in One coolers, or Closed Loop Coolers if you prefer.  As you would expect, the CLC 120 features a single 120mm fan on its radiator while the CLC 280 uses two 140mm fans to move heat out of your cooling system.  On both models you will find a new style of fan, with Teflon Nano Bearings and a curved housing which should increase airflow although it may also increase turbulence as the air can travel out the side; testing will determine the actual effect.

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Along with the announcement of these two coolers EVGA also hinted at the coming release of their new Flow Control Software.  This software will do more than simply monitor the temperature and speeds of the cooler and fan, it will allow you to create up to ten separate cooling profiles so you can switch modes depending on what you are doing. 

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As with most recent products, it has been infected with RGB features, though this particular strain of the disease can form a symbiotic relationship with certain NVIDIA GPUs from EVGA; allowing you to synchronize their colours and effects. 

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You can purchase these two coolers as of today, the CLC 120 has an MSRP of $89.99, $129.99 for the CLC 280 and both come with a free AM4 bracket for AMD users.

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Source: EVGA

RGB disease has infected the Thermaltake Toughpower Grand

Subject: Cases and Cooling | January 31, 2017 - 01:45 PM |
Tagged: thermaltake, Toughpower Grand, 750w, RGB, modular psu, 80 Plus Gold

Coloured LEDs are continuing to spread throughout PC components, the latest being the Thermaltake Toughpower Grand RGB 750W Modular PSU which can glow in 256 different colours.  The LEDs are not the only thing which has been added to the newest member of the Grand family, indeed [H]ard|OCP found significant improvements in this PSU's DC output quality when compared to previous three Grand models they have tested.  Even if you will never use the LEDs this is a PSU worthy of your consideration, from the 10 year warranty and proper 80 Plus Gold rating right through to the pricing of $100.

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"Thermaltake over the years has built some extremely good computer power supply units and along with that, it has also charged a premium for those which sometimes put it at a severe disadvantage in the value department. That changes today, in a very good way. It has flashy spinny LEDs, which you can turn off easily. And a 10 year warranty."

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Source: [H]ard|OCP
Author:
Manufacturer: FSP Technology Inc.

Introduction and Features

Introduction
                    
In this review we are going to take a detailed look at FSP Technology Inc.’s new Twins 500W redundant power supply. It’s been quite a while since we reviewed a redundant power supply in the ATX form factor. This should be interesting! (Actually, it turned out to be very interesting, along with a few surprises we didn’t expect).

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The FSP Twins 500W redundant power supply is targeted towards use in home and small businesses for mail or web server systems that require maximum up time. The Twins 500W PSU incorporates two 520W modular power supplies inside one standard ATX housing. Under normal operation the two power supplies operate in parallel, sharing the load. If one of the power supply modules should fail, the other one automatically takes over with no down time. And since the power supply modules are hot-swappable, a faulty unit can be replaced without having to turn off the system.

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FSP claims the Twins 500W is a server-grade power supply designed to deliver stable power and is certified 80 Plus Gold for high efficiency. The ATX chassis measures 190mm (7.4”) deep and is fitted with fixed, ribbon-style cables. Each modular power supply uses a 40mm fan for cooling and the Twins 500W comes backed by a 5-year warranty. Users can also download and install FSP’s Guardian software to monitor power input, power output, and efficiency, along with other parameters in real time if desired.

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FSP Twins 500W Redundant PSU Key Features:

•    ATX PS2 redundant size ideal for mail, web and home server
•    Server-grade design provides stable power
•    Hot-swappable modules design
•    80 Plus 230V Internal Gold certification
•    Digital-controlled power supply supports FSP Guardian monitoring software
•    Smart power supply supports Alarm Guard and status LED indicators
•    Flat ribbon-style cables with two 4+4 pin CPU connectors
•    Complies with ATX 12V and EPS 12V standards
•    Protections: OCP, OVP, SCP, FFP (Fan Failure Protection)
•    5-Year Manufacturer’s warranty
•    MSRP: $399.00 USD

Please continue reading our review of the FSP Twins 500W PSU!!!

What, no Cheez Whiz? Still, it is thermal paste round up

Subject: Cases and Cooling | January 26, 2017 - 04:02 PM |
Tagged: thermal paste, Arctic Silver, Arctic MX, cooler master, MasterGel Pro, CRYORIG, EKWB, thermal grizzly

Kitguru just tested seven thermal pastes; Arctic Silver 5 and Céramique 2, Cooler Master's MasterGel Pro, Cryorig CP15, EKWB Ectotherm and Thermal Grizzly Kryonaut.  They wanted to see what performance difference, if any, existed between them for no matter how effective your cooler is, it can't dissipate heat that is not transferred to it from your CPU.  Their test was conducted with a i7-4790K CPU and Cooler Master Hyper 212 LED CPU Cooler and the results show that the incumbent is not necessarily your best choice.

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"Following on from our previous articles about fan configuration and static pressure vs airflow fans, today we are looking at thermal paste. Specifically, we are hoping to find out whether or not choosing different types of thermal paste actually makes any difference. To do this, we test 7 products from 6 companies to see how much difference thermal paste really makes."

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Source: Kitguru

Das Keyboard Gaming Announces X50 Gaming Keyboard

Subject: Cases and Cooling | January 24, 2017 - 07:01 AM |
Tagged: Omron, das keyboard

According to post-CES coverage from Tom’s Hardware, Das Keyboard is in the process of rebranding their gaming line from “Division Zero” to Das Keyboard Gaming. Das Keyboard is known for their productivity-focused keyboards, including their famous models with unlabeled keycaps. I’m guessing they realized that more gamers know of Das Keyboard than Division Zero, which this news is the first I’ve heard of it, although it’s possible that they changed their branding for a completely different reason.

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Image Credit: Tom's Hardware.
(Das Keyboard hasn't updated their website yet...)

They are also announcing a new keyboard, the Das Keyboard X50 Gaming Mechanical Keyboard, which uses switches from Omron. If this company name rings a bell, they are the provider of switches for several of Logitech’s mechanical keyboards as well as mechanical switches for several mice, including a few models from Logitech, Razer, Steelseries, and others. This keyboard’s brand of switches is called “Gamma Zulu” and Das Keyboard claims that they are manufactured on a production line that is entirely separate from Logitech's Romer-G. There will be two models, one with a bump and another with a click, both of which will apparently be called “Gamma Zulu”.

As for the keyboard itself, it has three macro keys up in the top right, by the volume knob. Tom’s Hardware points out how odd these two decisions are, and I agree. Still, it might be very good for a left-handed gamer that still uses the arrow keys, despite pressure from game developers to pretend to be a Tyrannosaurus rex / Thriller zombie with our hands crushed up to the left, right elbow in our chest. (Thankfully, I have a big desk, so I can just slide my keyboard to the right.)

Yes, I used to look kind-of stupid playing Battlefield 2.

Especially when I bunny-hopped.

Yes, I bunny-hopped. Stop complaining and use a shotgun or something.

If you were a fan of the Das Keyboard X40 Gaming, formerly called the Division Zero X40 Pro, then you can still buy another one. Das Keyboard expects to produce both models in parallel, targeting the lower-end gaming market with the lower-numbered version and its Alpha-Zulu switches, its lack of a volume knob, and its left-side macro keys.

Tom’s Hardware claims that the X50 will sell for $180 MSRP when it launches in Q2.

In Win's 301 Case Is a Micro ATX Version of the 303

Subject: Cases and Cooling | January 20, 2017 - 04:16 PM |
Tagged: in win, enclosure, CES 2017, CES, case, 303, 301

For those of you who haven't frequented the site in the past three years, you may not know that I have reviewed SEVERAL computer cases in my time. And while I could not make it to CES this year to pay my respects to all of the enclosure makers I love so much, I still followed the enclosure news from my hidden, case-lined fortress. Among the new designs was this beautiful looking case from In Win, and it is a smaller version of their 303 case design.

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There is no official product page up, with just this image on their overview page, but Hardware Canucks posted video from their In Win booth visit on the show floor, which I have embedded below. The case certainly looks very good, and if it sells for less than the 303's $99 MSRP as speculated in the video below, it will be a very attractive option for a smaller - and very stylish, of course - system build.

(Video via Hardware Canucks)

If you watched the video you'll see that this is a very polished product, and I'm very impressed by the quality of the 300-series from In Win - especially considering its cost. Rest assured, I will be asking for a sample to review!