Lucky winners choice; an i7-8086k or a Threadripper 1950X

Subject: General Tech | June 19, 2018 - 02:37 PM |
Tagged: Intel, amd, i7-8086k, 1950x, funny

If you are so lucky as to be one of the 8086 people who won an Intel i7-8086K, live in the US and can be one of the first 40 to respond to AMD you can trade in your Anniversary Edition for a Threadripper 1950X.  AMD have offered this limited, tongue in cheek deal for those who prefer a higher PCIe lane count to a higher frequency, at least as long as you are a US resident.   The i7-8086K does offer better overall performance, though it can be finicky as Ken and others have discovered.  The Intel contest is closed, but they do state it may take up to two weeks for the winners to receive a confirmation email, hopefully they arrive in time for those who would like to swap.  The Inquirer has a link to Intel's Twitter response to this move, if you are interested.

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"AMD HAS PICKED UP A STICK and decided to give Intel a damn-good prod, as it's offering people who've won the Core i7-8086K the option to trade it in for its own Threadripper 1950X."

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Source: The Inquirer

Feel that Hyper Pulsefire Surge in the palm of your hand

Subject: General Tech | June 15, 2018 - 03:01 PM |
Tagged: Pulsefire Surge, PMW3389, NGenuity, kingston, input, hyperx

There are two things that stand out about this new mouse from Kingston HyperX, the moniker they hung on it and the RGB programmability.  The Pulsefire Surge may sound like a special attack you need to charge up but The Tech Report found it to be fairly generic, from the shape of the body to the Pixart PMW3389 IR LED sensor.  However, for those who love to put on a lightshow, the HyperX NGenuity software offers a unique trick.  You can program the 33 RGB LED clusters individually, offering a chance for a truly enlightened mouse, if you are willing to pay the $70 MSRP.

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"HyperX's Pulsefire Surge starts with a proven design and rings it with an array of configurable RGB LEDs to let gamers enjoy both form and function. We put the Pulsefire Surge to the mat to see whether it games as well as it glows."

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Intel's 8 Cores meal; comes with a Coffee Refresh

Subject: General Tech | June 15, 2018 - 02:38 PM |
Tagged: Intel, rumour, coffee lake refresh

Kudos to Intel for choosing to name their Coffee Lake Refresh exactly that, instead of adding an 'S' to the end of the name.   The refresh is rumoured to include an 8-core mainstream model, which will somewhat narrow AMD's current lead.  The rumours The Inquirer heard also suggest a 22-core high end model is a possibility, certainly an interesting count if nothing else.  This would come at a cost however, a run of Coffee Lake Refresh suggests that Cannon Lake may need a little work before it can be fired off.

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"The schedule states that Intel will launch the 8-core chip as an extension of the existing Coffee Lake family of processors in a few months' time, but it will be named the Coffee Lake Refresh, not the Coffee Lake S as previously speculated."

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Source: The Inquirer

Podcast #503 - Intel i7-8086K, Corsair Void Pro headset, and more!

Subject: General Tech | June 14, 2018 - 03:24 PM |
Tagged: video, zotac, VOID PRO, toshiba, Optane, noctua, logitech, Intel, i7-8086k, G512, corsair, coolermaster, amd, podcast

PC Perspective Podcast #503 - 06/14/18

Join us this week for discussion on Intel i7-8086K, Corsair Void Pro headset, 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, Ken Addison

Peanut Gallery: Alex Lustenberg

Program length: 1:18:14

Podcast topics of discussion:
  1. Week in Review:
  2. News items of interest:
  3. Picks of the Week:
    1. 1:10:55 Ryan: Transcend USB 3.0 Card Reader for $8!
      1. Can get it in pink for $.01 less!
    2. 1:12:10 Jeremy: Go for the Gold with Corsair’s Crystal Series 460X
    3. 1:13:15 Josh: Whoa...
  4. Closing/outro
 
Source:

BlackBerry Launches Security-Focused KEY2 Smartphone with Physical Keyboard

Subject: General Tech | June 14, 2018 - 03:05 AM |
Tagged: Oreo, encryption, dtek, blackberry, android 8.1, Android

BlackBerry’s upcoming KEY2 smartphone is a refreshed successor to last year’s KEYone that addresses most of the issues of its predecessor. At 151.4 x 71.8 x 8.5mm and 168 grams the KEY2 is slightly taller, but skinnier, thinner, and lighter than the KEYone with less rounded edges and no camera bump. The KEY2 comes in silver or black and features an aluminum alloy frame, soft touch non-slip back, and a 4.5” display and 35-key backlit physical keyboard around front. The smartphone runs the Android 8.1 Oreo operating system along with BlackBerry security features like a hardened kernel, secure boot, full disk encryption, DTEK security suite, Locker, and the privacy focused Firefox Focus browser.

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The 4.5” IPS display remains the same as the KEYone featuring a 3:2 aspect ratio and 1620 x 1080 resolution, but the BlackBerry KEY2 does feature an updated camera system and a tweaked keyboard. The dual rear 12MP cameras work with a dual tone LED flash and laser and phase detection auto focus (one camera supports a 2X zoom and supports portrait mode) to offer up high-resolution HDR images and 4K30 or 1080p60 videos. Around front, BlackBerry includes an 8MP camera for video conferencing or “selfies”. The keyboard has been updated with 20% taller keys and a matte finish while the right shift key has been swapped out for what BlacKBerry calls the Speed Key which allows users to hold in combination with any other key to open applications of their choice. The keyboard can be used as a trackpad with gesture support and hosts a fingerprint sensor in the space bar. According to YouTube vloggers at a BlackBerry event the keyboard feels more like the BlackBerry Bold keyboards of old which is a good thing. The keys are reportedly more clicky and less mushy as well.

The KEY2 features a headphone jack up top, power, volume, and convenience keys along the right edge, and a single speaker and USB-C port on the bottom edge.

Internally, BlackBerry has slightly updated the specifications to a Qualcomm Snapdragon 660, 6GB of RAM, 64GB or 128GB of flash storage, and a 3500 mAh batter. While the Snapdragon 660 is still a solidly midrange part, it is at least a good bit faster than the SD620 used in the KEYone thanks to the move to Kryo 260 CPU cores. Specifically, the Snapdragon 660 has four Kryo 260 CPU cores at 2.2 GHz and four cores at 1.8 GHz along with an Adreno 512 GPU, Hexagon 680 DSP, and X12 LTE modem. Wireless I/O includes 802.11ac Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 5.0, LTE, NFC, GPS, and FM radios. BlackBerry claims that the KEY2’s battery is good for up to two days of mixed usage and it supports USB Power Delivery 2.0 v1.2 and 9V2A 18W along with Qualcomm’s Quick Charge 3.0 for charging.

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This secure Android experience with physical key goodness comes at a cost, however. TCL’s BlackBerry KEY2 will be available later this month starting at $649 for the 64GB version (there is no word on the 128GB version’s price).

From my understanding the KEYone was a successful product for the company, and the improved KEY2 is sure to find a market among physical keyboard enthusiasts and security conscious business users even at the premium price.

Source: Blackberry

Steam Is Going Windows 7 and Up

Subject: General Tech | June 13, 2018 - 08:08 PM |
Tagged: windows xp, windows vista, valve, steam, pc gaming

Valve has just announced that the Steam Client has deprecated Windows XP and Windows Vista. On January 1st, the Steam Client will stop playing video games unless you upgrade to at least Windows 7. They have also announced that new features, like the updated Steam Chat, currently in Beta, will not be brought to those platforms, because why would they bother when they’re going to obsolete in about six-and-a-half months? Don’t poke it if it works, and fix what doesn’t.

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The pun writes itself...

Linux and macOS are still fine of course.

In terms of market share numbers, 32-bit Windows XP is sitting at around 0.34%; Windows Vista is unlisted. I doubt this will affect many of our viewers unless they have a “retro PC hobby”. Still, to some extent, it sucks that DRM shuts down games that could otherwise run on the target environment. It’s not like they can just make the games DRM-free for the affected OSes, though, but it’s still something to think about.

And, yes, both OSes (XP SP3 and Vista SP2) are already deprecated by Microsoft.

Subject: General Tech
Manufacturer: Corsair

Wire Free with RGB

Corsair has been on a roll lately. We’ve looked at a number of their peripherals here at PC Perspective and have consistently found them to be well-built, performance accessories for your gaming rig. Today we’re leaving the keyboards and mice behind to take a look at a different, more divisive product category: the gaming headset. Corsair’s Void Pro RGB Wireless looks great on the surface but does it have the sound and comfort to match? Let’s take a closer look and find out.

Specifications and Design

  • MSRP: $99.99 (Amazon.com)
  • Wireless: Yes
  • Wireless Range: Up to 40 feet (12m)
  • Surround Sound: Virtual 7.1 Dolby Headphone
  • Headphone Frequency Response: 20Hz - 20 kHz
  • Headphone Impedance: 32 Ohms @ 1 kHz
  • Headphone Drivers Drivers: 50mm
  • Headphone Connector: USB Dongle
  • Battery Life: Up to 16 hours
  • Microphone Type: Unidirectional noise cancelling
  • Microphone Impedance: 2.0k Ohms
  • Microphone Frequency Response: 100Hz to 10kHz
  • Microphone Sensitivity: -38dB (+/-3dB)
  • Lighting: RGB
  • Audio CUE Software: YES
  • Warranty: Two years

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As always, we begin with packaging. Corsair always does a good job here. We find the usual black and yellow trim with the shard background on the face, as well as our key feature callouts. You can’t see it well on the box since they went with a black and white aesthetic but both the “sails” logo and the trim on the microphone’s boom arm are illuminated, though only the former is RGB. Inside the box, we find the headset well packaged without any annoying tie-downs.

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Continue reading our review of the Corsair Void Pro RGB Wireless headset!

Trailer trashin'; missed an E3 trailer you wanted to see?

Subject: General Tech | June 13, 2018 - 02:34 PM |
Tagged: gaming, E3

Rock, Paper, SHOTGUN have complied all the trailers they could get their mitts on and posted them to a single, very long page.  If you missed any of the trailers or would like another peek then the chances are good you can find what you seek in that link.  They delve into details in the links added into their brief descriptions and you can also follow the links below to get even more information, such as the secret message from CD Projekt Red.

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"Not to worry though, here are all the trailers and news for you in one place. There’s a surprising amount of variety in the announced titles: from an old favourite making a return, much celebrated developers showing off their new series, to even a completely free game launching very soon. The games below aren’t in any particular order but you’re in for a long ride."

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Cortana's feeling vulnerable; that's why she's always eavesdropping on you

Subject: General Tech | June 13, 2018 - 12:39 PM |
Tagged: security, windows 10, cortana, microsoft, spectre

If your Win10 machine did not go beep in the night, you might want to get on that reboot as there are numerous security patches waiting to install.  One of them is a long standing flaw which effects those who haven't disembowelled the Cortana search assistant on their computer.  For those that have managed to subdue Cortana, rest assured she is not listening to you at all times; those who haven't should be aware that she is always listening, even in her sleep.  As creepy as that already is, it has also been a way to take advantage of long standing security flaw in the assistant.   This, as well as a patch for a Spectre variant and a variety of other patches is waiting your installation. 

You can check out information on Cortana's bad habits over at The Inquirer.

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"Lane Thames, a senior security researcher at Tripwire, spoke out about the long-standing flaw with Cortana, that meant the AI helper was always listening for commands, even when a PC is locked."

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Source: The Inquirer

Logitech's new G512 Mechanical Gaming Keyboard and GX Blue key switch

Subject: General Tech | June 12, 2018 - 02:45 PM |
Tagged: input, logitech g, GX Blue, G513, G512, mechanical keyboard

Logitech G revealed a new type of keyswitch that will be available on the G513 and new G512 mechanical keyboards as well as early access to new control software called G Hub. 

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You are likely already familiar with the G513, which Christopher recently reviewed.  That model used Romer-G linear switches with a model using tactile switches also available, adding a bump at the end of a keypress.  You will now be able to chose a model with the new GX Blue key switch, which offers an audible and tactile click at the end of your keypress, filling out the majority of the preferred mechanical switch types. 

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The new G512 keyboard is physically similar to the G513 but in a slimmed down package.  The wrist rest has been removed as well as the kit to pull off your keycaps to replace them with your own favourites.  It does retain all the LIGHTSYNC RGBs, along with the ability to program your lightshows using the Logitech Gaming Software you can grab from Logitech; unless you are feeling adventurous. 

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Depending on your location, you can try out the pre-release version of Logitech's new G Hub software which will replace LGS in the near future. The new software will offer all the functionality of LGS but with an improved interface to let you be even more creative with your shiny, shiny lights. 

 

Source: Logitech